According to David Ornstein, Eddie Nketiah will spend next season out on loan with Leeds United and Bristol City leading the chase for his signature.
The England under-21 international came close to going on loan in January to Bundesliga side Augsburg but had the opportunity vetoed by Unai Emery who wanted to retain the striker as back-up to Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alex Lacazette.
Nketiah, who was promoted to Arsenal’s first team and given a new squad number this summer, impressed on the recent tour of the US with goals against Bayern Munich and Fiorentina but still hinted at a desire to garner more experience elsewhere.
Highly-rated 20yo striker Eddie Nketiah set to leave Arsenal on season-long loan. Bristol City among a number of clubs in talks to sign England youth int’l. Currently no firm offers for defender Shkodran Mustafi & he wants to stay – but foreign teams have longer to do a deal #AFC
— David Ornstein (@bbcsport_david) August 6, 2019
Having initially asked the youngster to focus on Arsenal it now looks as though Emery will sanction the 20-year-old’s departure. A host of Championship sides, including Swansea City and Cardiff City, have expressed an interest.
Another possibility emerging for Leeds United – 20-year-old prospect Eddie Nketiah at Arsenal. Understand he's being considered if the club opt to take an out-and-out forward over Ryan Kent. #lufc
— Phil Hay (@PhilHay_) August 6, 2019
It’s now up to loan manager Ben Knapper and the player’s representatives to decide where he might best fit.
Obviously, it leaves Arsenal a little light up front, particularly when you look ahead to the early rounds of the Europa League and League Cup, but with Tyreece John-Jules penning a new contract yesterday, perhaps we’re looking at the Academy to provide answers.
There’s also new boy Gabriel Martinelli who will be hoping to make an early impression.