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Rich pickings for Arsenal from the Premier League bargain basement, as Arteta decides who stays and who goes!

Arsenal currently sit 8th in the Premier League. After a slow start after the restart with two defeats out of two. The defeat to Man City was somewhat expected but the outing vs relegation threatened Brighton, the performance coupled with Leno’s injury and conceding in the last minute was most concerning.

Arsenals fortune have seemed to change with Arsenal winning the next 4 matches and a draw. 3 away wins in the last 4 matches (Southampton, Sheffield United and Wolves).

On one hand if Arsenal don’t make European football, it might not be all bad. It would force Arsenal to have a massive clear out of any players that doesn’t want to play for the club and rebuild with project youth and focus on challenging for domestic cups for a few seasons.

On the other, the financial repercussions of failing to achieve European football will be far from ideal. How many times have we read that Arsenal are a club with a Champions League wage bill. Playing Europa League was far from ideal but it was valuable income nonetheless. No European football will have tremendous strain on the way the club is ran from day to day.

With FFP eased this season because of the global pandemic, this Summer should, in theory be a massive one for Arsenal and one of the biggest in our modern history. According to some reports Arsenal have roughly £30 million to spend before generating some extra cash through player sales.

Tuesdays draw with Leicester along with other results moved Arsenal to 8th in the Premier League, 8 points off 5th placed Man United which will need a miracle for The Arsenal to secure a much coveted Champions League place, depending on if Man City throw enough money at UEFA to get their appeal overturned.

Mikel Arteta has previously said that Arsenal’s run in will have a major impact on how the club operates in the transfer window.

“What we do today or in the next five weeks will have a big impact on what we have to do in the summer,” said Arteta.

Mikel Arteta

Mikel Arteta

“We have to put a plan [in place] to improve our squad, that’s first, fulfil the ambitions that we have, have the right players to support the talented young players that we have.

“They are still in the very early stages of their development and we have to know that, but we don’t have time. The demands of this football club are huge and we cannot stay still. We have to change things, we have to improve them.

“The most important thing is not about keeping [the players], it is about improving them, convince them of what we are trying to do and get them performing and winning football matches.”

Arteta added: “There is a lot of uncertainty in how the transfer market is going to look. You hear very different things and people are going to go all in, clubs are already spending a lot of money and others may be much more conservative and wait to assess the situation before they move.

“Our position at the moment is that we have to see and be cautious. Our ambition is still intact and I know from the owners that their ambition is still intact as well. We will try and do our best to improve the squad, maintain the players we want to maintain and move forward.”

Arsenal fans will be delighted that Arsenal have tied down two of our most promising talents – Saka and Martinelli, you could even throw in Willock who signed a long term contract last season. There is also positive whispers in the media regarding Aubameyang signing a new contract.

The cost of replacing Aubameyang and his goals would cost far more than getting Auba to sign a new contract.

“He needs to feel valued, he needs to feel he belongs to us and that we want him.”

“I think at the moment I am extremely happy with how he’s been performing and behaving.

Arteta giving instruction to Aubameyang

Arteta giving instruction to Aubameyang

“I have a really good relationship with him and we can discuss face to face a lot of things. So far as I’m aware I think he’s very happy at the club,” said Arteta.

I’m going to go through some of the players most in danger of being sold to generate much needed funds.

Outgoings

Matteo Guendouzi

One way Arsenal can raise funds is by selling some of their more valuable players. It looks as though Matteo Guendouzi is primed to be one player who will be shown the door. He has been left out of the Arsenal squad for the previous 4 match days. Arsenal have won the last 4 games that Guendouzi wasnt part of the squad… coincidence?

Another player who Arsenal would love to sell is Mesut Ozil. Unfortunately for Arsenal, there are no takers because of his massive 350k per week wages. Arsenal did however manage to get Mkhitaryan off the books and reportedly managed to save £10 million in wages – which went towards new deals for David Luiz, Saka and Martinelli along with the permanent signings off Pablo Mari and Cedric Soares.

 

Alexandre Lacazette

Alexander Lacazette could be sold to boost Arteta’s transfer kitty or could be used in a swap deal. Reportedly, Atletico Madrid and Juventus are his biggest admirers.

Lacazette agreed to join Atletico Madrid in 2017 only for it to break down because of a transfer ban, allowing the French striker to join Arsenal instead. It is no secret of Arteta’s admiration of Eddie Nketiah, so this one seems plausible.

Looks as though Diego Simeone still wants his man and with Arsenal wanting Thomas Partey, this is definitely one too watch.

 

Sokratis Papastathopoulos

The Greek defender has only featured once since the restart, as a 93rd minute substitute vs Sheffield United in the FA Cup.

The sometime erratic center back will surely be moved on as Arsenal have an abundance of players in that position, as well as Saliba coming in.

 

 

Konstantinos Mavropanos

The young greek center back looked the real deal when he made his debut vs Manchester United at Old Trafford. Injuries have curtailed his development somewhat and was subsequently sent on loan.

At 22, he has only managed to make 7 appearances for Arsenal and looks likely that he will be sold to generate funds.    

 

Calum Chambers

This was a tricky one. He is back in training after rupturing his anterior cruciate ligament. Maybe clubs will be put off trying to sign him as they want to see how he progresses when he eventually returns to full fitness.

Who knows how Arteta sees him! Will he allow Chambers the time to see if he can return to the form that he was at before he got injured? What we do know is that if he is for sale, we should be able to squeeze a few more million because of his English passport and the fact that he can play CB, RB and has even played CDM in the past.  

 

Sead Kolasinac

The Bosnian Hulk could be another casualty of the Arteta clear-out. With Tierney cementing his place at left back and seems to be improving with every game, Kolasinac could fetch a decent fee.

With Bukayo Saka able to play left back and even Cedric Soares, now might be the time he leaves Arsenal after 3 years with the Gunners.    

 

Incomings

Pablo Mari

Currently sidelined with an ankle injury he picked up at the Etihad, he underwent surgery and is set to be out for around 3 months, which will see him miss the start of next season.

He obviously impressed Mikel and his coaching staff enough for Arsenal to sign him for a total of around £14 million. Being the only left footed center back at Arsenal, he has a decent range of passing, good in the air and what he lacks in pace he makes up for with good reading of the game/positioning.  

 

Cedric Soares

The right back officially became an Arsenal player when The Gunners made his loan deal permanent from Southampton on a free transfer.

Having arrived at Arsenal with a knee injury, he was unable to take part, making his debut vs Norwich last week, scoring a left footed 25 yard rocket. Hopefully he can come in and give much needed competition to Bellerin.

 

 

William Saliba

The Messiah! Our Saviour! The Golden Boy! The GOAT!

William Saliba arrives at Arsenal with a colossal reputation as one of the brightest young prospects in world football. He can play anywhere across the back 3 and has played at right back showing how versatile he is for an 19 year old.

He is confident in possession allowing him to draw players to him before passing to midfield. He also has an eye for an incisive pass.

Again for someone so young, his ability to read the game is one of his strongest traits. Obviously still a little raw he has the all the ability to become one of the best.

 

With money tight, Mikel Arteta could look to sign players from teams who have been relegated.

 

Below is a list of players that Arsenal could sign for relatively less should their respective team gets relegated:  

 

Lukas Fabianski

Probably not a need for Fabianski with the emergence of Emi Martinez following Bernd Leno’s injury at Brighton.

Nonetheless, i’m sure he will be one of the first to be picked up should West Ham get relegated.

 

 

Issa Diop

Issa Diop turned 23 in January and would be more of a squad player/backup.

Reportedly the ‘top’ teams have shown an interest in the past and has stood out in a team that is fighting to stay in the Premiership.

 

 

Nathan Ake

The Dutch defender is entering his peak years and would definitely improve our squad. Ake has a tremendous record of staying injury free.

He is not the best in the air – winning only 47.5% of his aerial duels however, he is quick and can play the ‘sweeper’ role and would create a decent partnership with a ‘big’ (good in the air) center back.

 

 

Max Aarons

With Cedric Soares recently putting pen on a 4 year contract, the only way Arsenal would go for Max Aarons would be if Hector Bellerin is sold.

Aarons has been one of the few shining lights for Norwich this season with his marauding runs up and down the flank offering Norwich a constant attacking threat.

 

 

Ben Godfrey

Having only signed a new long term contract last year Norwich could still demand a hefty fee for the 22 year old defender.

Godfrey has been a regular under Farke only missing 5 matches around December with a knee ligament injury.

According to reports, many of Godfreys team mates, Godfrey included, will take a wage cut should the club get relegated which is looking increasingly likely.

 

 

Tyrone Mings

Having arrived from Bournemouth last Summer for £20 million, Aston Villa might want to recoup that money if they relegated.

The 27 year old should be in/entering his peak years and may not want to waste a year of it playing in the Championship. The 6ft 5in CB would be a decent squad player should Arsenal sell a few of their CB’s first.

 

 

Declan Rice

David Moyes described him as West Ham’s best defender and their best midfielder.

This could be a non-starter if Arsenals interest in Thomas Partey is genuine. There’s no smoke without fire and all that but whoever signs Rice will be getting a tremendous talent for the next 10 years or so.

 

 

Emi Buendia

The little Argentine has assisted nearly 30% of Norwich’ league goals. He has also created the 4th most chances (73) in the league this season so far.

Emi is criminally underrated who is producing excellent numbers playing for the worst team in the league. What would he do in a decent team?

 

 

 

Douglas Luiz

The Brazilian joined from Man City last Summer failing to make a single first team appearance under Pep Guardiola because of work permit issues.

He helped Brazil u21 win the Toulon tournament last Summer being named player of the tournament in the process. At 22 the sky is the limit for Luiz and has only impressed more since the restart. A bit like Buendia, he is performing exceptionally well in a bad team.

 

 

Felipe Anderson



Another Brazilian on the list, he can do everything. He can shoot, pass dribble and is not afraid to show his flair .

News of him signing from Lazio raised a few eyebrows but hasn’t really worked out for him so far. Maybe a change in scenery will kick start his career again because the talent is definitely there.

 

 

Jack Grealish

The Aston Villa captain is widely tipped to leave in the Summer with a host of top clubs fighting for his signature.

He is the most fouled player in the Premier League this season and has his best years ahead of him. He has an aura about him and seems destined to reach the very top.

 

 

 

Todd Cantwell

Having just turned 22, Cantwell plays with no fear, evident by the penalty he took vs Spurs in the FA Cup last 16. He walked up to the spot doing keepy ups, placed the ball on the spot, stuck it top corner to knock out Spurs in front of a packed Tottenham Hotspur stadium.

With 7 goals and 3 assists this season he will be looking to kick on from a decent season.

I have a hunch we might see him join Liverpool in the not so distant future.

 

Big game Sunday. 3 points would be lovely. Come on you Gunners.

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