Over the next few weeks I am looking at each Premier League teams rosters, who should go and potential arrivals.
I start the series with Arsenal.
Arsenal’s season and continual participation within European competitions abruptly ended last Thursday. The decline of Arsenal has snowballed for years, papering over the cracks with FA Cup wins, the reboot starts now.
Arteta’s reign has been underwhelming so far, he has spells where you think a culture and pattern seems apparent. Then he enters a spell when you seriously question what he is doing, even to the extent of how’s he in charge at the Emirates. Learning on the job is difficult, if the owners are willing to support him then at least another season in charge beckons. As he finishes his first full season a glaring factor is understanding he is not coaching the talent at Man City, the Pepism of over thinking formation and personnel shines consistently from Mikel.
The recruitment over the next 2 windows will determine the clubs future for the next 5 years. To aid funds for incomings players those leaving will help possible dealings, the transfer budget is obviously not at levels like Man U or Chelsea. Instalment plan transfers, freebies and high profile loans have dominated Edu’s incomings. Four players will surely be leaving due to their contract situation:
Chambers (1 year left on his deal) granted he has played well lately but injuries have blighted his Arsenal career. A moderate fee could be received or even being used as a makeweight within a swap plus cash?
Lacazette (1 year left on his deal) does not warrant a new deal so it’s either he leaves for free next year or some funds can be received?
Nketiah (1 year left on his deal) never impresses me when he plays, if he’d scored or performed better when giving the chance a new deal and the chance to succeed Lacazette could have been a option, instead optimising as much of a fee as possible should occur.
Reiss Nelson (2 years left on his deal) surely is not rated by Arteta he is barely used despite a season of so many games within small periods. The opportunity to cash in before his reputation and value plummets any further should be considered.
Elneny’s contract also runs out next summer but I would not be surprised if he gets a new one. It would make sense as he is a player who thrives in the DM role, keeps it simple and allows his team mates to perform the attacking duties.
David Luiz’s contract runs out this summer and if they are not planning to cash in on any of the other central defenders at the club surely he will be let go. Holding, Mari & Gabriel have performed ok at times, with Saliba to figure next season one more competitive body coming in would make sense.
Many others at Arsenal surely are going to be maneuvered out of the club due to their dire form over the last year or so, namely Leno & Bellerin. Pepe and Partey will probably be given another season but the scrutiny on them will be intense with fans back in the stadium next season. Joe Willock has never been good enough, it makes more sense to cash in on him now. Maitland-Niles could have a future but they nearly sold him last year to Wolves and his value will still be at a good cash out level.
Neither of their Real Madrid loanees will stay which will leave a massive hole to fill within the midfield. This is where the rebuild should start, ensuring the new players are owned by the club. To compliment the young talent already at the club, the new 8 and 10 should also be English to create a culture the fans can get behind. 2 lads at Chelsea could be available at reasonable prices, namely Conor Gallagher and Ruben Loftus Cheek. Both are out on loan and it’s hard to see what future they have when the club is always bringing in expensive foreign talent.
Without European competition the talent pool will be limited or they are relying on players buying into the project, gambling on the fact Champions League or Europa League qualification is earned ASAP. Fan favourite Aaron Ramsey could return if he had his way but Juve would want a fee and his wages will surely be too much. Smart signings from teams at top of the Championship or bottom half of the Premier League have to be considered, they are hungry and potentially ready to make the step up to playing week in and week out at the Emirates. Talent like the following may not be cheap but like I mentioned earlier current players could be used in exchange:
Positive aggressiveness in the market has to occur or fan protests against the owners will continue. The longer the club stagnates on the field the likelihood they will never compete like the Invincibles 20 years ago firmly becomes the reality.