Arsenal are buying players, but who should leave to make room?

Who will leave if Arsenal get all their targets? by Neil Watson

From the get go I am not writing this article as an enforced opinion but more to understand and be enlightened from reaction to it..

We appear to be in for a large amount of players and, unlike the last twenty pre-seasons, this is unprecedented. We have a keeper, two new defenders, we are allegedly in for two midfielders and now a winger. I also anticipate more rumours and/or acquisitions….

We already have a relatively large squad and so there must surely be a plan as to who is leaving, aside from Jack. I do understand the concept of owning players, loaning them out with the prospect of them improving or their value increasing but I’m wondering, if all the acquisitions happen, how our X1 will line up come August.

We know that lack of opportunities can demotivate senior players as well as stunt the growth of youth players, which can have a negative impact on them personally as well as affect squad moral.

I know many of you are able to demonstrate a starting XI from our growing group of Merry men but who does that leave sitting on the bench. I’ve seen a couple of line ups on here where Ozil doesn’t even make the starting X1. Does that mean that those of you suggesting he is not good enough feel he should be sold? (I would be surprised if any club in the world can have a £350k a week player warming the bench).

We know KOS is out until Xmas so I understand the need to replace him but he is one player. If we acquire more than one replacement who should be shipped out to make way for our increased defensive cover? We can’t keep everyone…

That principle applies to every area of the pitch…

Does Unai have a clear idea of how we will line up in August, has he already seen enough of the entire squad to know who he sees as starters, who he sees as squad players and who is on their way out? If he has then that’s impressive given not all the squad have started training.

I personally think certain players don’t deserve any more chances, whereas others haven’t been played in their strongest positions, and so need to be moved on.

My personal preferences would be to lose Cech, Xhaka, Wilshere, Iwobi, Mustafi And either Chambers or Holding (we don’t need two apprentices).

Players like Perez I believe haven’t been given a chance or a run in a full strength team and so evaluating based on the opportunities he has been given is harsh.

Losing all of the above allows us space but are they the right sales or should there be less?….. or more?

There are no guarantees players coming in will work within our team: You can put a Cheryl Cole mask on a fat bird but…. you get my point!

Neil Watson


  1. Phelyx says:

    We need a marquee signing. Enough of average and old signings

    1. kev says:

      Imo the signings are good but I’m worried about some of the average players being offered new contracts.I can see Wenger being vindicated this season with respect to some players.As for potential I think Bellerin actually has potential to be far better but for the rest no comments.I like how people like to think that Unai Emery is a magician and can even teach talent.Hopefully this season the suspect ones will be found out.Tired of seeing players being overrated.
      We have problems at LB,CB,CM and LW if you ask me.

      1. gotanidea says:

        Hey man, you said Wilshere is going to Fenerbache?

        Should check your sources again coz apparently he is moving to West Ham

        1. kev says:

          Yeah I was wrong on that one but it was close though.However, the Ospina one will happen as I said long ago even though Boca are interested.

          1. snowden says:

            You were close. Since when has Fenerbache of Istanbul been close to wet spam at the tax payers stadium. East London been close, they are about 3000 kilometers from each other.

  2. RSH says:

    If anyone follows Sokratis on Instagram, he’s already hanging out with Mavropanos, haha! I love it

    1. Sue says:

      Sokratis is a big unit

  3. kev says:

    Who remembers when I said Ospina to Fenebarche is a done deal and he will join after the World Cup?Just watch this space.

    Also as I said weeks back Kelechi Nwakali to Porto is a done deal and Aaron Ramsey will sign a new contract making him the 2nd highest earner and has been offered the captaincy.Ive already brought you the terms of the deal so no need for that again.

    Lucas Torreira is in London and he should complete the move.Details of Lucas Torreira’s deal. 5 years €3m (£2.6m) PA. €62k (£55k) PW

    We have received an offer of £15m for Mustafi from Juve and due to the number of CB’s we have the Soyuncu deal hinges on Mustafi being sold.He should come once we sell him.

    1. gotanidea says:

      15M is too low for Mustafi, because Arsenal got him with 35M. Should only sell him at 30M, due to the current transfer market

      Or use him as DM. I believe he would be a very good DM, because his ball control is pretty good, his stamina is high and he is very aggressive

      1. kev says:

        We are not getting that for him.If Arsenal think they’d be getting that they might as well stick with him this season.I’d sell him for £25m and I think there are even terms you can include in the deal that can help you get some more cash when he signs and keeps playing for them.

        1. Ozziegunner says:

          It is hard to believe that Mustafi was good enough to start for Germany, but yet played so poorly (albeit after his injury) for Arsenal.
          I agree with gotanidea, that he should be retained at least for this season to see how he performs under Emery’s coaching and with Torreira in front of him. Selling at this stage would be taking too big a hit on his initial transfer fee.
          I also like the option of trialing him as a back up DM.

  4. jon fox says:

    Neil, We have already lost Wilshere, so why are you asking whether we should lose him? Do keep up!

    1. Neil says:

      No I know that. I was including him in the group of outs to show potential total collective spaces. I’ve now had to type more detail in response to you that I was hoping to avoid. I’m sitting on a beach typing to you boys and telling my wife I’m not on just arsenal but responding to a business client!!! I’ll get rumbled if I keep typing!!

      1. jon fox says:

        I would hate to be the cause of a divorce, or even a spoiled holiday so am rather sorry Wilshere ever appeared on your original comment. He had no need to!

  5. gotanidea says:

    Yes, Ozil should have left before his massive new contract and his apathy at the Atletico Madrid match. But now it would be difficult to sell him with his gigantic wage, since no big clubs had real interest in him in the previous transfer window

    Ozil, Xhaka, Mustafi, Koscielny and Ospina should leave, but we all know most of them would stay

    About the Cheryl Cole mask thing, Arsenal have bought very experienced players so far, hence I expect no problem in their adaptability

    1. kev says:

      Arsenal fans said they will rather not lose Sanchez and Ozil in the same window.I wish Wenger was brave enough to sell Sanchez before the start of the season to City.The “know it alls” said we didn’t need the money.The refused to look at the bigger picture citing Van Persie case as an example.
      Imagine Real allowing Ronaldo to leave for free to Barcelona assuming Ronaldo said he’d 100% be going there once his contracts ends and noone should stop him.Do you think they wouldn’t have sold?Even Real would be sold.

      1. Phil says:

        @gotanidea- I must have watched a completely different game to you v Athletico Madrid as far as Ozil was concerned.”Apathy” issuggersting He was completely disinterested with the games.At the Emirates He was too wide right for most of the game and struggled to make an impression.Bit being played out of position against a team drilled to defend does not mean he put in a performance that was Apathetic.In Madrid it was pretty much the same.A very well drilled defence who were COACHED to DEFEND.
        If Kos had not committed football suicide in the first leg then the game in Madrid would have been completely different.But was it Ozils fault Belleron was out of position when Costa scored?Was Ozil to blame that Ospina went to ground far to early when Costa was through?
        FFS let’s not blame everything on Ozil.There were 10 other players in that team home and away that contributed to us losing.Plus a Manager with ZERO tactical nous.

        1. Mobella says:

          You are wasting your valuable time responding to getnoidea.

          1. GunnerJack says:

            I agree – gotnoidea inhabits a different world to all rational people. He’s away with the fairies most of the time.

  6. GoonUTH says:

    Mustafi out – Minolas in
    Iwobi Loan
    Sell Ramsey, Xhaka – Kovacic and Rabiot in
    Loan Dybala with an option to make it permanent

    Aubameyang Ozil Dybala
    Rabiot Kovacic

    Monreal Sokratis Minolas Bellerin

    1. Heisenberg says:

      Stop playing FIFA 19

    2. Felix says:

      This team will definitely get us back to the top and with a couple fortifications next season we will be competing for the title. I however rate Soyuncu over Minolas.

  7. Auba Arsenal of Lagos says:

    Dear writer have you seen the man city squad?if you have then you should probably ask why they are going for mahrez & jorghinno even though they have that squad that just won the league? Look it’s about time we fans begin to realise that to challenge & win you must have a large squad with considerable numbers of talent and class.if my darling club goes on to get more world class players and talents why not?!! Go back to the invisible era and look ,@ the bench (Wiltord,KANU,ljunberg,palour, )that’s how you compete at the highest level and win.

  8. RSH says:

    in terms of players leaving I think it will just be Ospina, Campbell. And Mustafi if we get a good offer. Holding, I would be surprised if he’s not loaned out.

  9. Scarra says:

    The amount Juve supposedly offered for Mustafi is way too small, i hope Gazidis proposes an exchange and its Rugani i have in mind

  10. GoonUTH says:

    Your comment is awaiting moderation? Y so long?

    1. Admin says:

      EVERYBODY’s first comment MUST be moderated, and I’m afraid I can’t (or would even want to) be on the computer 24 hours a day. Your impatience doesn’t augur well for you to become a regular contributor…

      1. says:

        nice one ref., sorry, i mean mr.admin . nice touch. and it is such an easy word and all to pronounce and write .please , see , i can even do it .more manners would be such a lovely thing.

  11. GoonUTH says:

    Your comment is awaiting moderation? Post my comment

    1. Admin says:

      I don’t see no “please”……

  12. Lance says:

    @Neil Watson. Your question, Who should leave to make room for new arrivals is very apt given that we can only register 17 foreign players.
    As things stand, we have 17 non-home grown players namely Cech, Leno, Koscielny. Lichtsteiner, Sokratis, Mustafi, Montreal, , Kolasenic, Mavropanos, Xhaka, Elneny, Ozil, Mhkitaryan, Perez, Auba, Lacazette and Campbell. The likely arrival of Torreira would make that 18. And with the rumoured negotiations for Nzonzi, Lazano and Soyuncu, the figure could rise to 21.
    Who will leave? If the trio of Nzonzi, Lazano and Soyuncu come in then I see Elneny, Campbell and Mustafi being sold. That will still leave leave us with 18 foreign players. We may not register Koscielny for the first half of the season since he is injured. The problem will arise when he regains full fitness in January.

  13. Sue says:

    Just saw an article on News now saying Emery might just win the league next season….. omg could you imagine it?? ???

  14. T2T says:

    As pr – the current Arsenal squad 2018/19 has 30 players of which (28) are over 21 and counts against the max 25 players rule. Of those over 21, I believe 9 are considered Home Grown. Goalkeepers – 4 / 1 HG; Defenders – 11 / 4 HG; Midfielders – 7 (5) / 1 HG; Strikers – 8 / 3 HG. This is before Torreira and Guendouzi – if they’re coming. Guendouzi will not count against the 25 players rule as he’s only 19. OK, this is the current situation. If we assume that Torreira is coming and Koscielny is out until 2019, we have to let 3 players leave and 1 more in January. Ospina will probably leave. I cannot see him accepting being 3rd choice GK. We have 11 defenders. Assuming Unai wants 2 in each position and possibly 1 extra CB because of Koscielny, that means Jenkinson and Holding will leave. I kind of like both, English and Jenkinson is an Arsenal fan. I’d keep Holding over Chambers but he recently signed an extension… We’re a little light I n midfield and will likely keep all. Up front I’d say let Akpom leave, Lucas I like but he’ll like go as well. The two strikers currently without jersey numbers, Campbell and Asano, will either leave or go out on loan. That leaves us with 3 GK – 1 HG; 9 defenders of which 2 are HG; 7 MF of which 2 are youth (both HG) and Ramsey is also HG; and 4 strikers of which 2 are HG. I’d like us to let Lucas have a shot. Anyway, this gives us some room to maneuver. 21 “over age” of which 6 are HG and 2 youth who both are HG. 2 from Torreira, N’Zonzi, Banega gets us to 17 over age and not HG.

  15. GoonUTH says:

    Admin I’m really sorry a bit over excited. Forgive me!!!

  16. Nnamdi says:

    I personally think the competition is good for the squad. I like bellerin but i feel he gets complacent atimes and thus might need competition to keep him focused.. I think unai would want to implement a new system and as such would try out players in different positions as well as fielding a different supporting cast ( new acquisitions). I can also imagine giving ozil less defending to worry about if he featured with torreira and xhaka. Not a personal favorite of xhaka but hey, he has his strengths… All I’m saying is even if they stay, thats not a bad problem to have

  17. Ozziegunner says:

    RSH, I’m with you; Arsenal can’t afford to lose too many more players without replacement, because a full squad will be required to allow rotation, flexibility for given opposition and player injury. Arsenal has a full program for the coming season and I look forward to watching Emery’s development and utilization of the squad.

  18. Shinoda says:

    I think some players deserve a chance because they have the talent.. However, we have some players who just don’t have the talent, are very injury prone, are rarely committed or are just plain useless.. Therefore, these are the players I would ship out ASAP:
    1. GRANIT XHAKA- I’m yet to understand his role at AFC
    2. JOEL CAMPBELL- Simply not good enough.
    3. ALEX IWOBI – He suffocates me with his performances
    4. LAURENT KOSCIELNY – Injury prone & old age is catching up.
    5. JACK WILSHERE – He’s already out.
    6. PETR CECH OR DAVID OSPINA – We just bought Leno.
    I have left out Bellerin, Chambers and Mustafi because I think they would improve with better coaching.
    I would also sell Ozil coz of his sickly antics and rarely turning up in big matches but we don’t have a number 10 with his quality & he is also on 350k per week.
    We need more leaders and warriors at AFC, therefore I wish all the best to the new coaching staff and all the Arsenal players & fans.

    1. Spartan says:

      why they offer xhaka a new contract when they are planning to sell him?

      Imo the players to make way are Ospina/Cech, Welbeck, Iwobi Loan, Asano, Joel Campbell

  19. Jeremy says:

    Whatever is the case, I certainly hope we never see the Dinosaur-styled make shift this and make shift that.

    I’m sympathetic for Iwobi and would give him one more chance to show us that it was the idiotic make shift thing which made him in such s way. But if he still can’t make good, will be glad to see him go in Dec/Jan.

    Anyway, back to transfer front, we need another CD and proper winger, preferably someone both footed.

    Previously, we had too many one footed player who were so god damn predicateble when comes to shooting.

    Hope we managed to cure that as well.

    1. Jeremy says:


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