Monday, April 22, 2024

Arteta: January deals ‘not possible’ despite ‘thin’ squad

Mikel Arteta says it wasn’t possible for Arsenal to do any January transfer business, suggesting it was more about the difficult of finding the right players than an unwillingness or inability to spend money.

Although there are some documented issues around FFP restrictions, the Arsenal boss seemed to imply that it was about keeping their powder dry for the summer. The January market has been very quiet in the Premier League in particular, with barely £50m spent in total, compared to over £700m in the same month in 2023.

That means fewer players are available, the snowball effect of almost no transfers taking place means less chance of an opportunistic deal, and beyond something very unexpected happening between now and Thursday’s deadline, it’ll be a case of what we have, we hold between now and may.

Speaking to TNT Sports about January transfers, Arteta said, “It wasn’t possible . Now we didn’t have the capacity to improve the team in the way that we think we want to improve it. So we decided not to do something yet.

“We have one of the thinnest squads in the league, that’s for sure. And when you talk about the numbers, especially in certain areas, we are really thin.”

Ensuring player availability is clearly key, and that’s something the Arsenal boss was clear about as he prepares his team for a trip to Nottingham Forest this evening.

“You need your best players in the team available,” he said. “When it comes to March, April, and you are fighting for everything, you need your best players and the squad, everybody fit and available to push.

“Because the margins are so small. And the difference that the big players can make in those moments are huge. And we missed that last year.”

Last season the twin blow of losing both William Saliba and Takehiro Tomiyasu in the same game more or less scuppered our title chances, and ahead of tonight’s game at the City Ground, Arteta has to make fitness decisions over Declan Rice and Gabriel who will both be needed when we face Liverpool at the weekend.

We may see him err on the side of caution if there’s any risk, but we’ll find out later on when the team news drops an hour before kick-off.

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We have a great first team when all fit but if injuries happen then we fall off. We would have won the league last season if everyone was fit. Let’s hope we don’t have any/many problems from now.


It is a risk with Rice and Gabriel, but every game is difficult and these are the best players in their positions. If we lose at Forest and Liverpool win and City win both of their games we’re looking at being 8 and 6 points behind teams that don’t drop points. If we then lose against Liverpool it’s practically all over. It’s a hard decision, but even if they are not 100% surely they must start.

Old Bloke.

If their not 100% then put them on the bench and bring them on later in the game if its not going our way?


50 million spent this year compared to the 700 million last year means the FFP rules are in everyone’s head and not this right player bullshit.

Santi’s Phonebox

Everton and NF would like a word.


Difficult to believe there isn’t a Trossard-type deal to be done – some rotation for Saka would be overdue. Last summer’s transfer business is looking even more ordinary in hindsight, and it looked pretty ordinary at the time (Timber excluded).

He really has no real choice but to use ESR more, but I have a feeling we’re going to hear more about the ‘thin’ squad.


The squad is thin because 25% is injury prone and can’t be trusted or relied upon. We lose too many players and are forced to pick teams based on who is available. Can’t carry zinchenko, Tomi, partey, ESR and Jesus. A couple have to be moved on and replaced with players that are available. Timber loss was bad luck and his return will help.


If we are so thin in certain positions start rotating and give squad players meaningful minutes as opposed to scraps. This will hopefully avoid us from running our key forward players into the ground come the business end of the season where our form under Arteta has been suspect for the past 2 seasons.

Heavenly Chapecoense

Even with all those players AFTV said we wanted to buy? Arteta really needs to talk to Fabrizio Romano to know the latest about Arsenal.

A Different George

I think he relies on Ornstein.

Bossman Bill

They’re going to have to sack off this FFP shit real soon, people need to accept that speculating about transfers (osimhen), celebrating transfers (rice), commiserating both about transfers you missed out on (Suarez) and the shit transfers which did happen (Cedric), is literally now the lifeblood of football fan experience. Like, Hatem Trabelsi never actually played for Arsenal but in my mind he’s as much part of this football club as, idk, denilson. FFP would have denied us this. No one cares about the football anymore, people only want transfer gossip and reaction, and the sooner those FA and UEFA… Read more »


Request name change to Bosman Bill. Thank you.

Bosman Bill

Consider it done

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