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Mikel Arteta can fast-track new signings with Arsenal on course to complete £200m triple deal



These are exciting times for Arsenal, particularly with regard to the summer transfer window.

After seeing two bids rejected for Declan Rice, who understands has always been Mikel Arteta’s priority in midfield, it would appear that the saga is nearing a conclusion as offer number three which is worth £105million – thus making the England international the club’s record signing – has been accepted by West Ham United.


This coupled with Kai Havertz’s £65million move from Chelsea being officially confirmed on Wednesday evening and confidence that the Gunners will reach an agreement with Dutch giants Ajax to sign versatile defender Jurrien Timber, that’s three deals – in terms of incomings – that are in the pipeline.


Of course, with the transfer window open for another two months there’s plenty of time for Arteta and the club’s sporting director Edu Gaspar to get more deals done with Romeo Lavia and Moises Caicedo among the names being tipped to arrive at the Emirates Stadium before 11pm on September 1.

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But just focusing on the aforementioned trio who look closest to joining Arsenal, as things currently stand, they all possess a leadership quality despite still being relatively young. For example, Havertz captained former club Bayer Leverkusen during the 2019/20 season and Manchester United boss Erik ten Hag has previously earmarked Timber as a future skipper.

“He is another great leader that was trained at Ajax,” the Dutchman said in his final interview with the club a year ago. “Besides his football skills he has the personality to become a captain.”

With Martin Odegaard flourishing as permanent Arsenal captain, Arteta needn’t be in any rush to name a replacement. Although, as Granit Xhaka is expected to join Leverkusen in a £13million deal, the Spaniard will soon find himself one player short with regards to his core group.


The midfielder, who is also the captain of the Switzerland national team, was the understudy to Odegaard in the season just gone as Gabriel Jesus completed three-man leadership group, whilst Rob Holding had also worn the armband on occasions due to this seniority within the squad.

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Should Xhaka leave, then if Arteta’s decision in the 3-0 home loss against Brighton & Hove Albion back in May is anything to go by, then his replacement in the leadership group will be Gabriel Magalhaes as the Brazilian ended up finishing the game in possession of the Arsenal captain’s armband.

Alternatively, Rice could be fast-tracked into the group as soon as his £105million transfer is completed. Having been named permanent West Ham captain following Mark Noble’s retirement in May 2022, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see him wearing the armband for the Gunners at some point if he joined.

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Interestingly Arteta has quietly built an impressive young leadership group at the club with nine of the last 14 players he’s signed all aged 23 or younger at the time of their arrival in N5 with the Spaniard seeing a leader in Odegaard long before appointing the Norwegian as captain.



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