After a successful summer transfer window, Arsenal’s thoughts have already begun to turn to what they might do in January.
The Gunners spent more than any club in Europe in the last window on bringing in Aaron Ramsdale, Albert Sambi Lokonga, Ben White, Martin Odegaard, Nuno Tavares and Takehiro Tomiyasu, but we understands that there is an acceptance from Josh Kroenke and Edu that more additions will need to be made if Mikel Arteta is to have a squad capable of challenging for major trophies.
This could see them look to acquire some new players when the window reopens in around six weeks’ time, with Donny van de Beek, Dusan Vlahovic and Dejan Kulusevski among those to have been linked.
However, it is far more likely that outgoings will be the main focus come January.
With no European football this season, the Gunners have several players on the fringes of the first team who appear to no longer be in Arteta’s first team plans.
In the space of a month Bernd Leno went from undisputed number one at Arsenal to being consigned almost exclusively to the bench.
The main factor behind this has been the form of Aaron Ramsdale who has been tremendous between the sticks for the Gunners.
While the German has shown an exemplary attitude in training, contrary to some reports, he has admitted that he will have to reassess his situation in north London if he’s not back in the first team by January.
Any departure would most likely see Arsenal looking to bring in an emergency loan back up in a manner similar to what they did with Mat Ryan last season though, with neither Karl Hein nor Arthur Okonkwo ready yet to take up the mantle of number two keeper.
The club are keen to avoid this kind of desperate measure if they can avoid it, but with just 18 months remaining on Leno’s deal at the turn of the year, they could be persuaded by the right offer.
Runar Alex Runarsson
One of the strangest signings in Arsenal’s history Runar Alex Runarsson almost certainly has no future at the Emirates.
His performances for the Gunners last season were so bad that he was omitted from the Europa League squad for the second half of the campaign despite initially being bought almost specifically to play in that competition.
The Icelandic stopper is currently on loan at OH Leuven where he has played just once so far. The Belgian side have the option to buy him on a permanent basis at the end of this season, and will hopefully take it up.
After nearly a decade in north London, Hector Bellerin was finally able to secure an exit with a move to Real Betis on transfer deadline day.
While, Arsenal would have preferred for any deal to be permanent, the Spaniard only ended up leaving on loan.
He has been regularly in the team at the La Liga outfit starting all but three of their league matches this season, and this could be enough to perk the interest of potential suitors around Europe.
Any official exit from the Emirates is likely to come in the summer where the then 27-year-old will have just one year remaining on his contract with Arsenal.
The Greek international was never really given much of a chance to prove himself at the Emirates but has really shone during loan spells in the Bundesliga.
It’s could be a bargain from former Arsenal head of recruitment Sven Mislintat who is huge admirer of the 23-year-old.
Reports have suggested that Marseille would like to secure a permanent transfer for Saliba once his loan there expires and that they want to start talks as soon as possible.
As things stand it would seem that Arsenal are unlikely to be too open to that idea.
Although the Frenchman would be behind Gabriel and Ben White in the event of a return to the Emirates, the Gunners are still hopeful he can come back and contribute to their squad next season, and would reportedly like to extend his contract to ensure his value is protected.
This would certainly rule out any permanent move in January, but come the summer the situation could well be revisited.
After starting the season as first choice right back, Calum Chambers is now struggling to get into the Carabao Cup team at Arsenal.
It’s a harsh and rapid fall for the England international who actually played pretty well on his return from an ACL injury last season.
He will be 27 by the time the January transfer window comes around, and is undoubtedly capable of securing himself regular Premier League football if he gets a move then.
Alternatively Jose Mourinho’s Roma side have reportedly looked at Chambers, whose seven year stay in north London will eventually come to an end with the best wishes of everyone at the club.
Sead Kolasinac seemed to be on his way to Fenerbahce towards the end of the summer transfer window, only to bizarrely find himself in the Premier League team that lost to Manchester City as part of a back three.
Since that moment though he has not even played a minute in the league and is firmly out of the picture at the Emirates with Nuno Tavares and Kieran Tierney ahead of him in the pecking order.
Despite his predicament the Bosnian has still been a positive presence around London Colney though and is respected by Arteta as a result.
That is unlikely to change the fact that Edu will look to secure some sort of fee for him while he can during the January window before his contract expires in the summer. An injury sustained while on international duty could be a spanner in the works for that though.
After publicly stating his desire to leave the club on deadline day, Ainsley Maitland-Niles has ended up playing quite an important role for Arsenal this season.
The England international has finally got his wish of playing in central midfield and when Thomas Partey and Mohamed Elneny head off for the AFCON in January he will get a chance to do so on a more regular basis.
This will be as a reward for the improved attitude he’s showing in training that has again impressed Mikel Arteta who has publicly praised the 24-year-old.
That would appear to rule out the possibility of an exit in January. Come the summer though, it could be a different story.
Where last year Elneny was the first option after Thomas Partey and Granit Xhaka in the midfield pecking order, new signing Albert Sambi Lokonga and the resurgent Ainsley Maitland-Niles have seen his minutes fall dramatically.
We understands that preliminary contract talks between Arsenal and the Egyptian did begin towards the end of last season, but after going cold they were never resumed.
It now seems likely that he will leave north London when his current deal expires in the summer as a result.
This is unless someone comes in for him in January, where Edu will be looking to recoup a fee if possible for the 29-year-old. Galatasaray and Watford reportedly showed interest during the last window, but his presence with Egypt at the AFCON for what could be the whole month may well scupper this.
After a difficult loan spell at Atletico Madrid last season, we understands that Lucas Torreira came back to north London in the summer and informed Arsenal of his desire to stay and play for them.
After being informed that he was not a part of the Gunners’ plans though the Uruguayan was sent out on loan to Fiorentina where he is likely to stay.
Reports in Italy suggest that La Viola’s management had a meeting with the 25-year-old’s agent Pablo Bentancur with a positive outcome.
The Serie A club have an option to buy Torreira at the end of this season for a fee believed to be in the region of €15 million.
It’s hardly a well kept secret but Mikel Arteta is not exactly the biggest fan of Matteo Guendouzi.
While the Spaniard refused to rule out a potential return for the Frenchman who is still contracted at the club, it seems highly unlikely Guendouzi will ever wear an Arsenal shirt again.
We understands that Marseille have the option buy the 22-year-old permanently in the summer for around £9.5 million when his loan spell at the Stade Velodrome ends on the proviso that they do not get relegated from Ligue 1.
Big things were expected of Reiss Nelson when he returned from his loan at Hoffenheim in 2019, but it never quite materialised for the youngster.
After falling behind Willian, Bukayo Saka, Nicolas Pepe, Gabriel Martinelli and Emile Smith Rowe in the wing positions it was decided that the Hale Ender would leave the club again this summer on loan, this time to Feyenoord after signing a one year contract extension to ensure his value was protected.
He is yet to start a match for the Eredivisie side although injuries are the main reason for that.
Upon his return from Holland it is likely that Nelson will leave Arsenal permanently next summer.
After failing to secure a late move to Crystal Palace due to complications over his wages many thought Eddie Nketiah would be lucky to get much game time at the Emirates at all this season.
But due to his impressive attitude in training the England under-21 international has been rewarded with Carabao Cup appearances by Mikel Arteta who publicly expressed his desire to see the 22-year-old stay.
This hasn’t been enough to convince Nketiah though, who has reportedly informed the club of his desire to leave.
Crystal Palace, Watford and Borussia Monchengladbach are among those to have been linked as Edu tries to secure a fee for him in January. Interestingly from the turn of the year onwards the Bundesliga club will be able to sort a pre-contract agreement with the striker that could give them the edge in the race for his signature.
We can pretty much say for certain that Flo Balogun will not be leaving Arsenal on a permanent basis any time soon, but a loan move is a whole different matter.
The 20-year-old has been encouraged to go out and get some senior minutes by England under-21 boss Lee Carsley, and he has admitted that he would be open to the idea of a new challenge in the second half of the season.
Championship sides Sheffield United and Middlesbrough have reportedly both shown interest in the forward who will be hoping to prove himself at senior level.
However, he has also stated that he completely trusts in his manager Mikel Arteta to make the right decisions for his career progression. The Spaniard has insisted that he does not want Balogun to skip any steps in his development, and if it’s decided that staying will be better for him then you would assume that is what will happen.
Despite seemingly being out of the door at the Emirates, Alexandre Lacazette has unexpectedly forced his way into Mikel Arteta’s first team plans this season with a string of fine displays.
He has also been a positive influence on Arsenal’s young squad around the training ground at London Colney.
With his contract set to expire at the end of the season though, this leaves the Gunners with a decision to make.
The club would reportedly be open to Lacazette signing a short term deal that would enable them to keep the 30-year-old around for another season while their younger strikers develop.
However, the Frenchman would unsurprisingly like more security at this late stage in his career, and wants a longer-term offer.
If he were to stay this would also likely make it difficult for Arsenal to go out and sign the striker that would perfectly fit Arteta’s style of play next summer.
Regardless of what the outcome ends up being it is safe to say that, with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Nicolas Pepe heading off to AFCON in January, Lacazette will be staying for the rest of this campaign at the very least.