June 30 is a very important date in the football calendar with a number of players leaving clubs following the expiration of their contracts and those who have been released are then free to sign elsewhere or commence a new chapter in their career starting on July 1.
Earlier in the month, Arsenal confirmed their released list and the most high-profile name featured to officially be departing the Emirates Stadium today is striker Alexandre Lacazette who has already agreed to rejoin former club Lyon after five years in north London.
On June 3, 2022, a statement read: “Alex Lacazette will be leaving us at the end of his current contract, which runs until June 30. Since joining us from Lyon in July 2017, Laca made 206 appearances in all competitions, scoring 71 goals. Thank you, Laca, we wish you all the best for the next chapter in your career.”
Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta and technical director Edu then thanked the Frenchman for his contributions: “Laca has been a fantastic player for us,” said the former. “He’s been a real leader on and off the pitch and has been a very important influence to our younger players. His commitment with us has been exceptional and we wish him and his family success and happiness.”
“A big thank you to Laca from everyone at Arsenal,” Edu added with the Gunners set to confirm the signing of Gabriel Jesus as a replacement for Lacazette. “He’s been really important for us. He will always be part of the Arsenal family and we wish him well for everything in the future.”
With that said, the 31-year-old isn’t the only player leaving Arsenal today. Women’s trio Lisa Evans, Tobin Heath and Viktoria Schnaderbeck have already departed due to their contracts expiring at the end of May, while Lydia Williams remains in talks over an extension to her deal.
When the Gunners communicated their retained and free transfer list on June 10, Williams and Eddie Nketiah had ‘ongoing discussions’ and ‘contract offered, ongoing discussions’ listed by their names. Of course, the latter has since committed his future to the club, but as recently as last Thursday, the Women’s goalkeeper said: “We are still going through contract negotiations at the moment so we will see.”
Therefore, including Lacazette and three academy prospects, it means there are as many as four players across the Arsenal men’s teams who will be leaving the club today.
Men’s and Women’s first-team squads:
Men’s Under-18s and Under-23s squads