Arsenal’s potential AFCON departures revealed – Should Arteta make January signings?

Arsenal is one of many Premier League clubs that will lose players for a month during the African Cup of Nations in January.

The Gunners have been in fine form recently, and most of their African players have made important contributions to the team.

Sky Sports reveals that Thomas Partey (Ghana), Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Gabon), Nicolas Pepe (Ivory Coast) and Mohamed Elneny (Egypt) are likely to be called up by their country for the competition.

Any of these players could miss these matches: Jan 1: Man City (H); Jan 16: Tottenham (A); Jan 22: Burnley (H); Feb 8: Wolves (A).

Just Arsenal Opinion

Losing players to international duty isn’t a new thing, and it would be tough for Arsenal to play without these stars.

However, the club should have learnt how to deal with problems like this by now.

With the competition kick-starting in January, that month is a good time for Arteta to add a few players to his squad.

But Arsenal can still do well if the other alternatives step up and fill the roles left behind by these stars.

Aubameyang’s departure could open up the chance for Alexandre Lacazette to score some goals, while Ainsley Maitland-Niles might take his chance when Partey and Elneny are gone.

Tags AFCON Mohamed Elneny Nicolas Pepe Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang Thomas Partey


  1. Elneny and Pepe rarely feature anymore so can’t count that as much of a loss, more a loss of backup players.

    I’m not too worried about Auba going either, he may contribute goal but he adds massive strain on our midfield and defence by being a passenger.

    We signed Partey over a year ago(and the rest before) knowing they play in this tournament so should have been planned for long ago.

    This is where the problem lies with MA giving Martinelli/Balogun/Eddie such a little game time even when we are cruising to victory….now when we need them they are inexperienced and possibly not match fit + definitely not match sharp.

    1. @ PJ, you have said it all.
      We should play Martinelli as a CF while Lacazette plays behind him. AMN, Xhaka and Lokonga in the midfield. I also wish we should bid for Sterling in January. Maybe offer Aubameyang to Barcelona and sign Sterling.

    2. If you say Auba is a passenger in that team I’m sorry I can’t take you serious.. in fact I do believe that you are clueless.. always check the stats mans pressing is up there with the very best mans goal scoring record is up there with the best.. just shut it.. it is irritating all this ignorant attacks on Auba.

  2. In general I am not keen on buying new players in January, loans in maybe but they would have to be clearly better than what we have in the remaining squad players

    The concern for me is more the possibility of other Clubs coming in for what they might see as our potentially “surplus” players, hard to resist any good solid offers but it would further deplete the squad at the wrong time

    Newcastle for example are more likely to be January predators than us, bottom of the League, poor defence they need to do something so will they come after Kola, Holding, Chambers, Cedric or Mari for example, could another Club come sniffing around Eddie, AMN or others, that’s more of a concern for me than who we might bring in to be honest

    That said, with the COVID News today will AFCON still go ahead anyway?

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