Who is imminent Arsenal signing Jakub Kiwior & why are they bringing him in?

Comments (0)
Kiwior 2022-23
Arsenal are in advanced talks to sign Polish centre-back Jakub Kiwior from Italian side Spezia, but who is he and why do Arsenal want him?

Mikel Arteta's Arsenal side are sitting pretty at the top of the Premier League table, five points clear of holders Manchester City with a game in hand. The starting eleven has not let the manager down all season, having won 15 of their 18 matches and conceded just 14 goals.

Despite their success in 2022-23, though, Arsenal have thus far struggled to secure any new signings in the January window. They lost out to Ukrainian starlet and reported long-time Gooner Mykhailo Mydryk to rivals Chelsea, who are sitting comfortably mid-table in comparison.

That may be all be about to change though, with the club closing in on a £20m ($25m) deal for 22-year-old Spezia defender Jakub Kiwior. But with William Saliba and Gabriel forming a formidable partnership already this term, why do Arsenal need to bring him in?

From his playing style to why the Gunners are interested, GOAL runs you through everything you need to know.

  1. Kiwior's club career to date
    Getty Images

    Kiwior's club career to date

    Kiwior started out in Poland with Fortuna 1 Liga side GKS Tychy, and it took just three months before he would be snapped up by Belgian outfit Anderlecht, where he would represent the club solely at youth level.

    Without breaking into the first team, Kiwior joined Slovakian side Podbrezova, before making the short trip north to MSK Zilina after just six months.

    In August 2021, the centre-back completed his breakout move to Italian side Spezia for €2.2m, where he has made 61 appearances and started 17 of the club's 18 competitive matches in 2022-23.

  2. Kiwior's style of play
    Getty Images

    Kiwior's style of play

    The Pole is left-footed and therefore plays predominantly as a left-sided centre-back, although he is also comfortable playing on the right-hand side of a back two.

    As we have seen with previous Arteta signings - such as former Man City man Oleksandr Zinchenko - Kiwior is a very versatile player. The 22-year-old has been known to play at left-back, and at times even adopt a defensive midfield role.

    Kiwior's performances in a variety of roles for Spezia not only caught the eye of Arsenal but also Serie A giants AC Milan and Juventus, as Arsenal look to plug gaps in a number of different positions.

  3. Why do Arsenal want Kiwior?
    Getty Images

    Why do Arsenal want Kiwior?

    The main reason for his signing, however, is to provide defensive cover in that left centre-back role, particularly for Gabriel Magalhaes.

    The Brazilian has barely put a foot wrong this campaign and has even popped up with two league goals. However, he has started all but one of Arsenal's 21 matches across all competitions this term, and Arteta possesses very little cover in that position should Gabriel face a stretch on the sidelines.

    Ben White would be an obvious choice but the England international has excelled at right-back for the Gunners so far this campaign, while Rob Holding is probably too much of a downgrade for a long-term spell in the first team.

    Kiwior's versatility will help, though, and should provide Arteta with sufficient depth for any injuries suffered at left-back or central midfield.

  4. Is Kiwior an international?
    Getty Images

    Is Kiwior an international?

    Not only does Kiwior boast experience in Italy's top flight, but the 22-year-old has already made nine appearances for his country.

    The centre-back made 35 appearances for Poland at youth level, before eventually making his senior debut in June 2022.

    Kiwior most recently featured for his national team at the 2022 World Cup, starting all four of their matches in Qatar before their last-16 exit to eventual finalists France.