Unai Emery has reaffirmed that Arsenal are working to sign new players this month but, unsurprisingly, he was unwilling to talk specifics when quizzed in today’s press conference ahead of Friday’s FA Cup fourth round tie with Manchester United.
With a week to go until the transfer window closes, the Gunners are yet to get a deal over the line. Unlike last year when we heralded the arrival of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Henrikh Mkhitaryan, the club has made it clear we’re only looking to recruit players on loan.
Barcelona’s Denis Suarez has been the subject of many back page headlines, although if you believe last night’s twist, that deal could be dead.
“The club continues to work on that,” said Emery when asked about the club’s ambitions on the transfer front.
“It’s difficult, you know, but I am working with our players and I think we need – and we can – sign some players to help after our injuries like Rob Holding, like Welbeck, like Hector Bellerin.
“But we can play with the players we have now and the same message is to you and every supporter, we only want to sign one or two players who can really help us with good performances.
“The club is working. They know our intentions, our possibilities for signing players that can help us, but they work and also with communication to us.”
Asked specifically about Suarez, he went on: “I don’t want to speak about each player. I know the club is working with different players.”
Whilst Emery stopped short of using the classic Wengerism “like a new signing”, the boss did suggest that Dinos Mavropanos, who got some minutes at the back end of last season, may feature in the coming games.
“The idea is firstly to find the quality and this quality can help us,” he said.
“We need, if he can come here, a winger for the right or left or some players also at centre back. But now, Dinos Mavropanos is coming back after his injuries and I think I can use him in the next matches.”
One rumoured late move was an apparent loan bid for out-of-favour Manchester United centre back Eric Bailly. This always seemed ambitious, as even though the Mourinho-Wenger feud no longer affects the two clubs, it’s unlikely United would simply loan us anyone, and it appears that Manchester United rejected the bid.
It’s possible that any potential January moves may be hampered by the recent announcement that head of recruitment Sven Mislintat will be leaving the club in February.
You know what it’s like when you’re set to leave your job, you basically just sit around eating biscuits, don’t you?