This is a transfer story that will not just include Arsenal. As the summer transfer window draws near, clubs are looking at the long term, at a future without fan revenue and the prospect of a possible second wave of COVID -19. The way transfers take place is about to change as a direct result of the global pandemic.
As the Gunners prepare to sell to support their summer spending, other clubs are rumoured to be looking at doing something similar including neighbours Chelsea. It’s said that Chelsea could offload up to six players (The Express) including Marcos Alonso, Michy Batshuayi, Tiemoue Bakayoko, Kenedy, and Danny Drinkwater.
You could include Spurs in the growing list of sellers because of the huge debts from their stadium build and Mourinho may be forced into sacrificing some promising academy players and at least, one big name from the first team.
Manchester United will be looking to trim their squad to offset a spend up to £150m and Jessie Lingard is thought to be one of the big-name casualties that will be sacrificed to make way for reinforcements in the summer transfer window.
Apart from Manchester City and Liverpool, who hardly need the money, most clubs will be looking to lighten their load in the summer, but there’s even a suggestion that Manchester City might part company with John Stones and a few peripheral players. Liverpool are looking to offload James Milner and Xherdan Shaqiri to make way for their emerging academy prospects plus possibly, one or two additions.
Arsenal are going to trim the fat on a dearth of central defenders and players that aren’t in Arteta’s long term plans. Add to that list, underachievers, and the odd ill-disciplined player, and that list could be as high as 8 or 10. Choose your candidates for the chop at this point!
Özil, Mavropanos, Chambers, Kolasinac, Torreira, Xhaka, Mustafi, Guendouzi, Lacazette, Sokratis, and Bellerin could all make way as Arteta tries to freshen up the first team. I suspect that Xhaka and Mustafi will stay for at least another season, having turned a corner with their form since Arteta’s arrival.
Some fans won’t like this news but the truth is, Arsenal needs more players than they can currently ship out. This summer transfer window is the first in two or three where the team will be dissected and reinvented, but the Spaniard will simply be unable to do what he needs in a single window.
Next season will also see the graduation of at least three more academy players into the first-team squad, probably as bit-part players and subs as Arteta tries to mix youth and experience.
Contrary to popular belief, plans are in place to buy up to three players in key areas and if Aubameyang fails to sign a contract extension, they will also be looking at a proven goal scorer around 27 or 28 years of age who can guarantee them a minimum of 20 goals per season.
Intriguing and uncertain times ahead, but in the light of what recently happened to Wigan, perhaps, fans should be grateful that they are not in the same position, and perhaps, their expectations are realistic under the circumstances.