Mikel Arteta has given a bit more background on the decision making around the deadline day loan moves for Joe Willock and Ainsley Maitland-Niles.
The former will spend the rest of the season with Newcastle, while the latter is hoping for midfield playing time with West Brom.
The Arsenal boss revealed he had spoken to Willock about a development loan during the summer, but felt he gained from being a solid performer in the Europa League – scoring three goals and providing three assists.
“We talked in the summer about a possible loan,” said Arteta.
“I said to him that I wasn’t comfortable with that because I wanted to give him minutes. He was going to play different competitions and in my opinion it was the right thing to do for his development.
“I think he’s played 17 or 18 games in this period which is a lot. He’s played to a big level.
“Now we have less competitions and I thought he was going to have less time and I thought maybe the best thing was to give him another 14, 15, 16 games in the Premier League to have 30 to 32 games in one season.
“For his age and what he’s done in the last few years, that will be a really positive thing.
“He can completely agreed. We found the right club, the right manager and coaching staff to do that.
“Hopefully it’s going to be a really successful period for him.”
However, with Maitland-Niles, it’s a slightly more complicated situation.
“Ainsley is in a different phase of his development,” continued the Spaniard.
“He’s 24 [not until August], he’s an English international, he’s played more games and he just wanted to start football games and he wanted that guaranteed.
In my position, it was really difficult to do that. He was willing to experience something else, he’s never been on loan like Joe, [he actually spent the 2015-16 season on loan with Ipswich] and I decided to allow him to do that.
“He can play in different positions. He might have the possibility to play in midfield which for him is important.
“When a player’s main will is not financial, it’s just to play football, it’s difficult to stand in his way when you don’t feel he’s going to start that many games.”
Arteta is expecting both players to return in the summer, at which point decisions will be made about what happens next.
Both will have two years left on their contracts, and depending on how their loan spells go, they could be offered new terms, or put up for sale to raise funds for incoming transfers.
Arsenal fans will be keeping an eye on Newcastle and West Brom between now and May, and let’s hope the young Gunners do well.