Raul, Edu and Unai have about three and a half days to strengthen Arsenal’s squad before the window for Premier League incomings closes at 5pm on Thursday.
After that, we have just under a month to sell any players we don’t need to clubs around Europe. The window for buying players in Italy closes on 23 August, while in Spain, France and Scotland it’s 2 September.
It’s no secret that Arsenal’s main priority lies in strengthening the defence. The acquisition of William Saliba is a boon for next year but having been loaned back to Saint-Etienne it’s clear we need to find another centre-back, especially if Laurent Koscielny gets the move he wants.
The 25-year-old made 20 appearances for the Old Lady last season but has his work cut out making the team sheet ahead of old boys Chiellini and Bonucci and new arrival Matthijs de Light. Apparently, we’ve been trying to nail down a two-year loan deal for the Juventus defender but Goal.com says the Serie A champions aren’t interested. Rugani is under contract in Turin until 2023.
Reports at the weekend suggest the 22-year-old Scotland international may not be fit for another eight weeks. Is that enough to put us off from making a third bid? Maybe not. It sounds as though we’ll need to cough up the full £25 million asking price and will have to structure the deal so that a significant chunk of that cash is paid upfront. It’s something of a conundrum given we’re arguably stronger at left-back than we are in the centre of defence.
Unai Emery has said he wants the youngster to focus on playing for Arsenal this season but even after bagging a couple of goals against Bayern Munich and Fiorentina, the striker was still weighing up whether a loan move might be best for his development. It sounds as though he’s not short of suitors with Championship sides Bristol City, Cardiff City and Swansea both tipped to take him for the year. If he does go, perhaps Tyreece John-Jules can fill his boots for a bit?
Emile Smith Rowe
Still out injured, still be tipped to moved to Germany. It sounds as though it’s a two-horse race for his signature with both Wolfsburg and Leipzig, with whom he spent six months earlier this year, said to be interested.
It sounds as though he’ll be heading to Rennes or Bordeaux if Emery can’t persuade him to stay. Both have said they want him.