Mikel Arteta says Arsenal will wait until after Sunday’s match with Burnley to decide whether Miguel Azeez and Tyreece John-Jules will head out for a second loan spell or not.
Both youngsters were due to stay at their loan clubs until the end of the season but like Nikolaj Moller, Jordi Osei-Tutu, Jonathan Dinzeyi and Harry Clarke, summer agreements with those trusted with their development have been ended prematurely.
Given the personnel problems, he’s been working through, Arteta was asked if Azeez and John-Jules might bolster the first team squad.
“Miguel Azeez had Covid so he has not been involved at all,” said the boss.
“Tyreece John-Jules, we brought him back for different reasons. The loan spells and the things that we wanted to achieve with him weren’t happening, so we decided to call them back, sit down, think and now talk and discuss what the best plan is, going forwards.
“Within the context we are in now as well, they can help with some numbers, which is good.”
On whether they might play their football somewhere else in the second half of the season, the boss added: “It’s a possibility we are going to explore now when we have some normality after the Burnley game – where we have a break, and the transfer window starts to shut – what the best options are for these individuals.”
On the subject of players returning to the club, the Gunners are set to see Thomas Partey land back in the UK in the next 24 hours following Ghana’s unexpected AFCON exit.
The four-time winners came bottom of their group (they only had to come third out of four to qualify) following a disastrous couple of weeks in Cameroon that saw them draw with Gabon and lose to Morocco and minnows Comoros.
“It was a huge disappointment for Thomas obviously because he was representing his country and in this period he had big aims towards the competition,” said Arteta.
“He’s out now so he will be fully focused and involved with Arsenal as soon as possible.”
Tomorrow’s clash with Liverpool is likely to come too soon but Sunday’s game with Burnley – if it goes ahead – seems like a reasonable target. If that happens, he won’t actually have missed a league game, which is incredible.