One of the secondary stories to yesterday’s transfer deadline day, aside from the signing of Thomas Partey, was that Arsenal were looking to send William Saliba out on loan.
He had been linked with Fulham, a move which would have given him Premier League experience and allowed him to stay in London, close to the club.
However, it has emerged that an agreement was found between Arsenal and Saint-Etienne to send him back to his former club for the duration of the 2020-21 campaign, but it fell through at the end because the paperwork could not be completed in time.
On their official website, Les Verts said, “Long before the transfer window closed, AS Saint-Etienne had reached an agreement with William Saliba and accepted Arsenal’s offer for a one-season loan.
“Unfortunately, all the administrative conditions could not be met in time, in England, for the finalisation of the deal.
The disappointment is great for ASSE and William Saliba, who particularly determined to return to the club where he had flourished.”
Quite what is going to happen now remains to be seen. The Gunners are obviously keen for him to play, but the fact we’re willing to loan him suggests we think he’s some way from being ready to play for us.
There is the possibility that he could go to a Championship side as the window remains open until October 16th between Premier League and EFL clubs.
Saliba joined Arsenal in the summer of 2019 when we paid Saint-Etienne a fee of £28m before loaning him back there for the season.