Monday, July 15, 2024

The great Arsenal clearout – where do we stand?

With just over a week of the transfer window remaining, Arsenal have their work cut out trimming down a squad replete with fringe players. Much like putting the bins out, it’s not a fun task and little wonder we’re leaving it to the last minute.

Having sold Matt Turner, Pablo Mari, Granit Xhaka and Auston Trusty, we’ve received in the region of £40 million so far this summer. Given we’ve spent around £200 million on Declan Rice, Kai Havertz and Jurrien Timber, the club will be hoping to raise a significant chunk before 1st September.

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🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 ARTHUR OKONKWO 

Contract runs out: 2024
Last year: Started on loan at Crewe Alexandra, excelled and earned a move to Austrian side Sturm Graz. He made 18 appearances and even won the Austrian Cup.
Linked: Sturm Graz wanted him back, clubs in Germany were said to be interested but nothing has materialised. It’s actually been very quiet.
What could happen: We still expect Arthur to seal a permanent move away from the club as he’s behind Karl Hein, David Raya and Aaron Ramsdale in the keeper pecking order.
Target asking price: £2 million
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🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 ROB HOLDING 

Contract runs out: 2024
Last year: Made 24 appearances for Arsenal in all competitions with most of those minutes coming in the Europa League. Stepped in for William Saliba during the run-in, struggled and was replaced by Jakub Kiwior.
Linked: There were suggestions that Besiktas came in with a low-ball offer a few weeks ago and that Arsenal told them to get serious. There’s not been much else in the media aside from spurious early-summer talk of Celtic interest.
What could happen: We wouldn’t be surprised if Holding left and we wouldn’t be surprised if he stayed. He could potentially get some game time in the domestic cup matches (especially now Timber is injured) but unless there’s an injury crisis, he’ll be feeding off scraps. We know he’s an important voice in the dressing room but at 27, does he want to spend the year playing cheerleader or getting on with his career?
Target asking price: £5-10 million
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🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿 KIERAN TIERNEY

Contract runs out: 2026
Last year: Kieran made 36 appearances in all competitions but only started six games in the Premier League. Having been a regular prior to that, falling behind Oleksandr Zinchenko came as something of a shock. Mikel Arteta says the Scotland international is still in his plans, as evidenced by his use off the bench against Manchester City in the Community Shield, but he’s not been in the squad for the first two league games.
Linked: Celtic would love to have him back, but realistically, can’t afford to match his Arsenal wages. Newcastle United were hot for him but have since signed Chelsea youngster Lewis Hall on a season-long loan deal with an obligation to buy. Spanish side Real Sociedad have also been tipped to make a move.
What could happen: While the club may view Tierney as a cash cow in the way some others on this list are not, we wouldn’t be surprised if he stays in light of Jurrien Timber’s injury. Ultimately, we suspect the decision lies with the player and whether he’s tempted by any offers in the coming days.
Target asking price: £25-30 million
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🇵🇹 NUNO TAVARES 

Contract runs out: 2025
Last year: Spent the season on loan at Marseille and played regularly, racking up six goals in 39 appearances. All the same, the Stade Velodrome outfit seemed happy to part ways by the end of the season in which the player’s efforts were questioned in the media.
Linked: Wolfsburg and and Werder Bremen were linked earlier this month. Nottingham Forest held talks more recently but those broke down and there’s since been suggestions of a move to Aston Villa.
What could happen: We firmly expect Nuno to depart in some form or other.
Target asking price: £8-10 million
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🇵🇹 CEDRIC SOARES 

Contract runs out: 2024
Last year: After 119 minutes of football at Arsenal in the first half of the season, he moved to Fulham to link up with former coach Marco Silva. He made eight appearances for the Cottagers but spent most of his time on the bench.
Linked: Not sure there’s been anything creditable at all this summer.
What could happen: It’s clear he’s surplus to requirements, the only question is whether someone offers him a move or if we take the decision to terminate his deal. We’ve been moving away from the latter as a policy, so the onus looks to be on his reps to sort something ASAP.
Target asking price: Wishful thinking
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🇧🇪 ALBERT SAMBI LOKONGA

Contract runs out: 2026
Last year: There was lots of game time in the Europa League for Arsenal but he flattered to deceive. Didn’t help that he was in midfield the day we lost at Old Trafford; the only league defeat suffered by the Gunners before Christmas. A move to Crystal Palace in January looked good on paper but he barely featured after Patrick Vieira, who drove the deal, was sacked and replaced by Roy Hodgson.
Linked: There was talk of a reunion with Vincent Kompany at Burnley but those seem to have collapsed. Brighton have also been mentioned as an option. Surprisingly, there’s been little interest from abroad.
What could happen: Sambi is on record as saying he wants to go somewhere and play, so a departure seems certain. Given he’s under contract for a couple of years, a loan deal is possible.
Target asking price: £8-10 million
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🇺🇸 FOLARIN BALOGUN

Contract runs out: 2025
Last year: Having moved to France off the back of recommendations from Alex Lacazette and Nicolas Pepe, Flo hit 22 goals in all competitions for Stade de Reims to alert clubs around Europe to his talent. Having also switched international allegiance and bagged his first goal for the USA, he’s a player with plenty of suitors.
Linked: Reims wanted to keep Balogun but knew he was going to be out of their reach. Inter Milan have had him on a list of replacements for Romelu Lukaku and Monaco have actually tabled an offer that was rejected. Given Arsenal want to raise as much as £50 million from his sale, it’s a bonus that Chelsea, West Ham and Fulham have made contact with his reps. Even Sp*rs asked after him, apparently.
What could happen: Given the player hasn’t been anywhere near Arteta’s squad for the first two games, it’s clear we want to sell. Rumours suggest Monaco are going to return with an improved bid which could press other clubs into action. We’ll see.
Target asking price: £40-50 million
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🇨🇮 NICOLAS PEPE

Contract runs out: 2024
Last year: Pepe scored six goals for Nice up to mid-January but the second half of the season was wrecked by knee issues. He missed a big chunk of games from the end of January through until mid-March, made a brief return, and then sat out the rest of the season. In the end, he only made 28 appearances. His injury issues also seem to have scuppered involvement with Arsenal’s pre-season and while he indicated he was back at London Colney this week, there’s nothing to suggest he’ll be reintegrated into the first team squad.
Linked: Besiktas opened talks with Pepe but couldn’t agree personal terms and clubs in Saudi Arabia have also expressed an interest.
What could happen: While he’s well within his rights to stick around at the Emirates for the final year of his contract, it’s hard to imagine him wanting to do that. There’s still a player in there somewhere and more than enough time to reach a high level, so you hope he finds a deal that’s acceptable to all parties. Unlike other examples, a stint in Saudi away from the limelight might actually do him some good. 
Target asking price:
£5-10 million

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Johnny 4 Hats

I genuinely forgot Matthew Upson is still at Arsenal.

Funsho Patrick

Lol…..but seriously,no arsenal player has ever been sold for 40m …in a world flush with Saudi Arabian cash? It’s a cultural thing now and we’re finding it hard to shake it off! Put Brighton,chelsea or spurs jerseys on this lot and clubs will be scared to low ball us(all these teams have sold players for our club record multiple times)..it’s a conversation the board should have….perception is everything!

Hurensohn

Heads up Andrew but the players names aren’t appearing in the app.

Dr Zebra

I think it’s to encourage them to leave..

Ebo

It’s because Edu’s new strategy is to ride the Delorian back to when we haven’t bought these players yet and convince previous Arsenal executives and his younger self to just say no. Soon you will them, Pepe, Lokonga and co. slowly disappearing from the photos… except Cedric. Even time itself can’t get Cedric out of the photos.

Gooner7190

Getting rid of Cedric might be a job for Thanos

Ebo

Cedric is inevitable

loose_cannon

With Timber’s injury, we’re down to our original complement of defenders from last season. So I don’t see us selling Tierney or Holding without replacement, and replacing them would defeat the point of selling them, to raise funds.

Dave

We have Timber to come back for the end of the season at least.

No foot Norbert

It’s likely they won’t take the risk and slowly integrate him back during next year’s pre season

Chuck Felsea

Bit surprised now about Arthur and the statements of Sturm Graz. He was really good for them and it seemed they really wanted him back, but at least to local media they made it look like he had some absurd asking price and they could only afford him in case he prolonged his Arsenal contract and then was loaned to them again. Seeing here that his asking price is 2 million I am really wondering, because they have sold Hojlund (meanwhile at ManUre) to some Italians for more than 15 million last year and this summer striker Emegha (sic?) for… Read more »

Philip Visser

That’s about (minimum) £100m if all of these players are sold close to the values as indicated. Plus a big chunk of salaries off the books. If only….

ealing

salaries of the books, but apart from KT and Balogun there is not a lot of money there.

😇🚗☀️

IIRC Cedric is on some stupid package which is why we can’t do much better than loan him to recoup some wages. Thanks Raul and your Panamanian Ponzi scheme/trust fund/personal cheque account/brown envelope/back pocket (delete/select your preferrence).

Stan Adams

What about Elneny ?????
He’s always been average at best,i seriously dont get how he has survived this long,ok he is popular but doesnt actually being good on the pitch count ?
I bet the other popular but average on the pitch player Rob Holding survives too i can only assume these two run down the canteen and get the brekkie and lunch for Arteta and the boys or just keep them entertained with a few pranks and jokes.

Dave

He’s pretty much always 7/10 performer. Good squad player.

Onenil

Elneny is 31 he has no resale value. He cost 6 mill played 155 times.
He remains as solid cover for an injury crisis in midfield, but mostly as a coach/role model professional for the younger players. I expect him to stay beyond his playing days at Arsenal as a coach maybe u18 or u21 after others move on.

Big L HoP

Wow some of the takes are shocking. Arsenal fan’s memories are short af

Badaab

Nothing wrong with mo.

Heavenly Chapecoense

Tierney has to go and Elneny the solid squad player and future legend has to stay. Devotees of guru Arteta have spoken. I am with them every time we win games.

AusGunner

Setting aside this lame post, was the exact nature of Elneny’s knee injury ever actually confirmed?

truth teller

people want elneny who was below par to stay yet they want tierney who is 10 times the player elneny is to be sold, yet at the end of season they will moan why we didn’t win the league, well the reason is this mentality right here

Blueberry

Tierney is reaching his peak and Elneny is way past it. Tierney wants to play while Elneny is happy to be a support member.

More than good reasons they are.

Nzini

Inter Miami could do with Pepe

Daveo

He might not get inter the Miami team…

Heavenly Chapecoense

Please, Inter Miami was losing every games few weeks ago.

spinner

Whoosh!

SuperSubTrossard

I’m glad I’m not Gabriel name up there.

Master Floda

We’ll probably end up accepting 35m for Balogun. We’ll probably extended Okonkwo and loan him out, same as Sambi and Nuno. And we’ll buy out Pepe and Cedric, while KT and Holding will stay. I know that doesn’t sound very optimistic, but I haven’t seen anything in the last few windows that would encourage me to think differently.

ealing

I agree, with regard to Balogun, with a sell on, we could eventually achieve close to 50m. I don’t see need to extend before loaning out. i am more inclined to cut losses going forward. Apart from KT and Balogun, the others will achieve v little money and we are not in a position to drive a hard bargain. not even in respect of loans out. We have 32 players. Hein does not have to be registered in our players’ list. I don’t think we will register Timber for the next two windows. So unless we present two different lists… Read more »

OdalGooner

Reports that Pepe may be going to the Saudis. Anyone hear anything even remotely credible?

Blueberry

You put anything with Saudis these days. Their footballing policy is quite versatile, unlike the citizenship one.

Determination Cultured

The saudis should set up a new club and buy this whole lot apart from balogun for 150 mil.

jod

Its a general problem with premier league clubs, they pay more than the rest of Europe so its harder to move players on. You could have written a very similar piece about Spurs and no doubt several other clubs. In a sense it solves itself in that if all the players whose contracts run out in 2024 stay then at the end of the season they will walk away for free and disappear from the books. Of course that isn’t a great outcome from the clubs point of view. But if Arsenal are committed to getting more for the players… Read more »

Determination Cultured

Given edu’s poor sales record, i doubt we can move anyone for any significant money. Even balogun will probably end up leaving for maybe slightly less than 40 mil pounds

Arsenio

Can’t really get a good sales record if you’re selling crap that nobody wants…

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