Arsenal Set To Face Multiple Player Exits In January
The players that Arsenal have brought in over the past two summer transfer windows have been such a contrast to plenty of years prior. 2020 did see the arrival of Thomas Partey and Gabriel Magalhaes but the signings of Willian and Alex Runarsson showed the mistakes were not yet over.
However, despite the positivity of recruitment for Arsenal, the flip side of the coin has continued to falter and disappoint. This is, of course, the sales department of the club.
In the past three years, 19 players have left the club from the senior side on permanent deals. 13 of those players left without the club getting anything for them regarding a transfer fee.
Either this has been a result of contracts expiring like the case of Alexandre Lacazette or David Luiz. Or players have had their contracts terminated, or free transfers simply agreed with other clubs.
Hector Bellerin was the example this summer following a similar move from Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang less than nine months prior with both joining Barcelona. The striker now has ironically returned to the Premier League with London rivals Chelsea.
This needs to change, and technical director Edu will come under pressure in 2023 to secure some significant fees for players. With the arrival of Oleksandr Zinchenko, both Kieran Tierney and Nuno Tavares’ minutes are expected to diminish.
The latter has left for Marseille and even spoke out recently of wanting a permanent buy option inserted into the deal. An indication that his future is likely to lie away from the Emirates.
“I came to Marseille to finally be able to play in my position,” he told RMC Sport. “When signing with OM, I wanted to have an option to buy, but Arsenal refused. With my agents, we always wanted this purchase option, but Arsenal didn’t.
“Now I’m at OM, and with or without an option, I’m happy. At Arsenal, I would have probably only played in the [FA Cup and EFL Cup].”
Another player who has moved to France on loan is Folarin Balogun. Whilst Tavares’ goalscoring has been impressive, the England youth striker has five goals and two assists in five games, making him one of the most lethal forwards on the continent.
With Eddie Nketiah signing a new deal and the £45 million acquisition of Gabriel Jesus at the club, seeing a route into the first team for Balogun looks slim. This becomes a delicate topic because Balogun is a Hale End product.
Saying goodbye to Tavares carries far less weight than the striker. However, can Arsenal afford to have a multi-million asset running down his deal on loans, not getting senior minutes due to Jesus and Nketiah?
The answer now is likely no. Unless Nketiah has a poor year and Balogun returns in the summer looking a better option than the new number 14, a serious sale should be considered.
Liverpool made a name for getting good fees for players, and so have Chelsea. Both sold English strikers Dominic Solanke and Tammy Abraham for good fees, £19m and £34m, respectively.
If Arsenal can receive a fee in this ballpark for a backup striker, it represents improved transfer business. Manchester City sold Angelino, a surplus left-back, for £16.3m. Take the fees for Angelino and Solanke and a combined £35.3m made from two players of similar standing in their respective clubs to Tavares and Balogun; there is an opportunity if the pathway does not materialise.
Both Tavares and Balogun could represent serious money next summer for the club as they try to turn their reputation in the market around. The likes of Nicolas Pepe, Alex Runarsson, Pablo Mari and Ainsley Maitland-Niles also need to be part of an improved sales record too.
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