Arteta confident he can reshape squad before transfer window closes


Mikel Arteta says Arsenal’s plans for the transfer window are clear and that the club remains hopeful of delivering on its aims by the time it closes on 6 October.

The Gunners were quick to snap up free agent Willian when he left from Chelsea and are very close to announcing a deal for Brazilian centre-back William Saliba Gabriel but other business, both ins and outs, is yet to progress that far.

Judging by recently speculation, reinforcing the midfield with mettle and creativity looks to be a high priority although to fund such deals, buyers will need to be found for those on the fringes of the first team squad.

In recent weeks, Sead Kolasinac, Hector Bellerin, Calum Chambers, Rob Holding, Sokratis, Lucas Torreira, Matteo Guendouzi and Ainsley Maitland-Niles have all been linked with other clubs.

“I’m confident we’re going to do everything we can together to achieve the target that we have before 6 October,” Arteta told the press ahead of Saturday’s Community Shield match with Liverpool.

“If we’re not able to do that or reach that level it’s because somebody beat us with our planning.

“It’s clear what we have to do, we’re aiming for that and hopefully we can achieve it or get close to achieving it.”

The timing of our trip to Wembley is far from ideal given most of first team will have had just a couple of training sessions since returning from holiday. While a few players got the chance to blow off the cobwebs in Tuesday’s run out against MK Dons, it’s probable that several others will have to wait until next week, when they join up with the countries, to get minutes under their belt before the new Premier League campaign starts.

“I think all managers wanted more time with them to prepare,” admitted Arteta.

“Having that short a period in pre-season and having to send them back on international duty [is not ideal].

“As well, we have to understand that all the countries had the Euros taken away which was a massive thing for them and they have been waiting many, many months to have the players back in.

“We have to adapt. It’s a really difficult context to keep everybody happy. We all know that it’s not ideal. Even for me, I didn’t even have a pre-season with them before I joined. We’re going to have to adapt and to make the most of it.”

With travel restrictions changing all the time and the Covid-19 situation teetering on a knife-edge in most countries, the upcoming Interlull is fraught with potential difficulties. It wouldn’t be surprising if matches are postponed due to positive tests in training camps and it’s possible early-season team selections will be dictated by who is and isn’t in quarantine on their return.

Arteta is bracing himself for the upheaval. “We’re going to have many more cases [of Covid-19] in the future, unfortunately,” he said.

“You’re just planning to do something and then that player tested positive but then that positive, it was a false-positive.

“We are trying to get used to it, to get around it and try to manage the situation as well as we can. There’s not much we can do, there are some uncertainties we can’t control at the moment.”

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“very close to announcing a deal for Brazilian centre-back William Saliba” — Do we have to announce William Saliba again?


As soon as he gets his Brazilian passport we have to announce him again


He remains French until he becomes Brazilian, that’s how it works.

Laca new signing

Obviously he meant Gabriel Magalhaes but it being a Friday today, one can’t rule out the possibility of Alen having drowned a few pints already so we’ll let it pass. I’m not sober myself ?

Johnny 4 Hats

Anyone else getting a bit fidgety about the Gabriel deal? Never a good sign when everyone is reporting that he’ll sign on Monday and it’s Friday and everything is eerily quiet…


There’s been a frenzy of press speculation about several “deals” but money is a problem and the prospective fee (the installment schedule) and/or personal terms are likely sticking points. There’s always a risk that one of the few clubs around with “robust” resources will come in a snatch our target(s). A plus though is Arteta, I think. He appears to be very driven (in a good way), positive and persuasive. We’ll see.

Johnny 4 Hats

He’s definitely a scholar of the Wenger school of persuasion. I still love that Rambo story when he was set to join United until Wenger parachuted in at the eleventh hour and persuaded him otherwise.

There are no people I’d sooner be in a hotel room in the 90’s with than David Dein and Arsene Wenger.


A big blow, I think, was Dein’s departure from Arsenal. Things were never the same “behind the scenes” after he went. Press reports said that he disagreed with Wenger over the plans to move to The Emirates, although that wasn’t the reason he left. Dein was an excellent foil for Wenger and he was never satisfactorily replaced – and the club suffered because of it.

Sac, Lac & Crack

I can think of quite a few I’d rather have been in a hotel room in the 90’s with….

Big bird for one. I was a massive fan. Oh, and Donatello from the TMNT too.

Johnny 4 Hats

Neil Buchanan and Timmy Mallet for me. Bet those boys went hard…


I have it on good accounts that he will be announced once , we manage to get him a French passport.

Johnny 4 Hats

Well, from my experience of renewing mine, that can take between 6 and 8 weeks.


Especially seeing that Napoli had gone back with a higher bid.


Just announce the signings..

Thiago Silva just signed for Chelsea, and they sent the papers from Milan to London. Why can’t Arsenal do that with Gabriel? He doesn’t have to self-isolate to sign a paper.. Or is it that they’re having problems with making the announcement-video??


And what an amazing deal they have in sarr. Even if he never becomes a top class defender he will still be sold for handsome profit since he has being brought for free at the age of 21 and not 33.


Yeah rightly or wrongly Chelsea treat player transfers as a business in itself


Rightly or wrongly they have bought some top quality players and all we have is a chelsea reject coming to the end of his career. Who are the smart ones here?

A. Williams

A world class reject?

Drogheda Gunner

They didn’t reject him, he rejected them. There’s a big difference.


“Like a new signing”


Sorry that was meant to be below the comment about reannouncing Saliba…


Seems we have a bit of a Andre Marriner, Kieran Gibbs and Oxlade-Chamberlain mistaken identity scenario going on here.

Ordnance Dave

Oh shut up Walcott!


Well, there’s about 5 weeks before the window closes so there’s time. That said, there are a reported dozen players Arteta would like to offload (staggering, if true) and we’ve not exactly set the revolving doors at The Emirates spinning so far. There’s a huge amount of work still to do on that front then. Also, it’s a depressed, buyers, market, and it will take a superhuman effort to shift some of those players and many will remain I fear. Anyway, on the buying side, it’s still very quiet despite all the press speculation. We must have been near signing… Read more »

Dave cee

Really? I think you made a typo lol. Maybe edit for Gabriel?

Dave cee

Seems Pogba and another French player tested positive. This is going to go on for a good while yet. Only when there is a tested vaccine available can we really start to look at things returning to how they were. For now disruption and upheaval are the new norm. It’s amazing that anyone is doing anything in the transfer market truthfully. Frustrating as anything, but that is life right now.
Stay well everyone and don’t let it get you too down


Luckily for Moan U, De Gea will be OK as he can’t catch owt….:-)

Tierney Turner

Worryingly it was the footballers that started testing positive first before the 1st lockdown, I have a bad feeling it’s all about to go tits up again


I’m sure they aren’t but I wish the club were making moves to sell Xhaka. If this midfield rebuild goes as planned/dreamed he is going to be the biggest casualty in terms of playing time. The biggest point of rebuilding the midfield is transitioning away from players as limited as him to more individuals who are more secure technically and competitive athletically so we can revert to 3 man midfield setups and 2 man CB pairings. He’s only going to lose value over the next year and this may be as close as they get to recouping what was paid… Read more »

Sac, Lac & Crack

With Torreira and Guendouzi heading for the exit and Ceballos not an Arsenal player until he is, selling Xhaka this season would be a bit too much churn.

He’ll play most games next season and seems to have a good understanding of what Arteta want him to do for the team.

Not time to move him on yet.


I understand your points but I don’t agree. I don’t think a team that just barely finished 8th and wants to prove it’s committed to getting back into the CL has such thing as “too much” churn. Maybe only if the churn includes your only standout performers. And even then it’s debateable. If anything for me, Xhaka starting the majority of games next season would be exactly not enough churn. I know I say this a lot but the marginal upsides to setting up your team to hide/accommodate Xhakas weaknesses doesn’t come close to the marginal downsides. If he’s still… Read more »


While Chelsea has already spent over 150 million getting the players they want, we are still fucking around. I know we are skint but atleast the ones we thought would happen like auba and Gabriel should have happened by now.


Arteta stating he is confident he can reshape the squad tells me that he has doubts about being able to reshape the squad. Frank Lampard didn’t go out and tell the world he was confident he could change his squad – he just went out and signed the players he wanted.
Arsenal are not fooling anyone.
They are broke. Simple as that.
You don’t lay staff off then be expected to go out and spend £200 million on new players do you?


Frank Lampard also wasn’t giving an interview where he was asked about transfer plans either was he?


There is still time to bring new players in. My concern is more about outgoings because I sense our outgoings will determine our incomings. Also, I wasn’t too pleased about the Guendouzi comments. I just hope he wanted to drum up interest.


We are notoriously poor at selling just saying…getting hopes us believing that we will earn a good amount to pay for what we want in market is a fool’s errant.

This market is also impacted by covid. Apart from top top players, mthe rejects will likely not fetch their asking price.

Which is why I mentioned it makes better sense for us to sell Auba now with a demand for him and at 31yrs. Retain Lacazette for a season, rebuild attack next season, concentrate on rebuilding midfield now which is full of holes and question marks.


I wonder if Auba is delaying because he doesnt see any ambition in signing exceptional talent. We have no money, struggling to sell all the flops and have a mishapened team, full of below average defenders and young players being shoe horned into any position with a vacancy. Depressed market or not the Premier league is still the most lucrative and you can bet all the top clubs will spend heavily. Right now we’re being fooled by click bait columnists who have us linked to everyone who has a hole in his arse.


Delaying bc in principal he will agree to the Arsenal offer (covering his base), but waiting in reality to see which CL top clubs come in for him. Which is why I think we are foolish and naive. Attempting to sell Lacazette complicates things potentially for us if should Auba not commit. Now we are left with two strikers going out…Sure we can attempt then to add someone but the market for top proven strikers is very tight (Suarez and Cavani otherwise…and they may be snapped up by then) Then we may be left with risky choice plus inexperience in… Read more »

And really bad eggs...

Why is there even international football at all at this time. I know club football has been well managed so far, meaning the cases have not gone out of control, but international football? Seems unnecessary, also it’s not like anybody is looking forward to the matches


What Chelsea are doing with Thiago Silva makes more sense from business point of view than what we have done with Willian and are attmepting to do with Auba. As mentioned nothing wrong with experience but IMO 1) 1 year (Plus 1 year option) should be what we were negotiating for not 3 years on 220K per week. Frankly as much as Pepe has not been consistent this season, prefer to let him try and step up this season and have Nelson compete. Willian is not that versatile, I’ve only ever seen him from right of Chelsea’s attack so he… Read more »


If I were to think of a balance squad (One option each position) : ……………………………….Laca/Nketiah…………………………………… Saka/Martinelli…………………………………………………Pepe/Nelson ………………Aoaur/Smith-Rowe……Ceballos/Willock………………. Tierney/Kola………………Granit/Banega……………….Bellerin/Cedric ………………Mari/Manghales………..Saliba/Chambers……………….. ………………………………..Leno/Martinez…………………………………. Aoaur for 65m Manghales for 27m Ceballos say 11m (plus installment to 22m (next summer) Total 103m (Maybe one more who can play in as striker and on left side who is older and can be moved on in a year – say Atalanta’s Ilicic on loan 7m) Sell : Auba – 40m Sokratis -15m Mustafi -10m Holding -15m AMN – 15m Torreira – 15m Total 110m (Price to move) (Get rid of Mhkitryan and Elneny for free, don’t bother… Read more »


Blogs, I can’t believe how many read this and thought you actually made a mistake with Saliba. Appreciate your style.


AMN and Bellerin cannot be sold.

Simple as that.

And if they are, this board deserves dog’s abuse.