The players that should leave Arsenal this summer, and the reasons why…

Players That Should Leave Arsenal This Summer by Goonerboy

Hello wonderful family! Right now, I can’t wait for this season to be over, I just have to be very sincere. Apart from the 2008 season where we should have won the league (If only Eduardo was not injured) I have never seen Arsenal Football club so unlucky in recent years.

The more we try to show ambition and improve, the more it seems we are sabotaging ourselves. We have lost a lot of points by small margins, terrible officiating and bad judgment from the manager but ultimately, we have been let down by players we depend on. We have cleared some of the players that are not good enough in the winter window, but we have to continue this clear out in the summer, not only because of balancing the books or trimming the squad but to have a balanced and competitive team.

Without further ado, here are the players I think we should cut ties with this summer:

Hector Bellerin:
Bellerin is now our longest serving player and vice-captain. His rise to stardom was a thing of joy amongst our fanbase. We were thrilled by his lightning pace and attacking plays. But the honest truth is that Bellerin has never been a complete player. His only skillset is pace and he has failed to improve the other aspects of his game. He is not by any means a good defender, completely useless aerially, he can’t cross and in recent seasons he has lost all agility and aggressiveness needed in this league. To make it worse, the pace that used to be his only quality is no longer there. If you are not sure, try to compare him with the other fullbacks in the league and see for yourself. He should not even be starting ahead of Cedric in my opinion, he has declined and we can do better than him.

SOUTHAMPTON, ENGLAND – JANUARY 26: Hector Bellerin of Arsenal looks on during the Premier League match between Southampton and Arsenal at St Mary’s Stadium on January 26, 2021. (Photo by Naomi Baker/Getty Images)

Mohammed Elneny:
Just one question, what is he good at? He can’t tackle, can’t defend, can’t control a game, he is so ordinary and should not even be anywhere near our first team, he showed glimpses of improvement after his loan spell but you can’t give what you don’t have. He is so bad we don’t have to replace him in the squad, just recall Guendouzi and give him another chance. At least he pushes the attack and shows courage.

I am not sure he would make the bench for Villa, Everton, Leedso r Wolves to mention a few, it is time we let him go for good.

Eddie Nketiah:
No need to mince words, he can’t make it at Arsenal or maybe even the Premier League. He will surely follow the paths of Chuba Akpom and Benik Afobe. The major problem is his physique, he is not robust enough for this league. Add to that the fact that he lacks any sort of special quality, if I wanna be fair, I would say he is good at pressing and he seems like a good poacher but that is about it for him. Let’s hope we can get a decent cash from his sale.

Calum Chambers:
Some players are just so unlucky and that is the case with Chambers. He goes out on loan and wins the player of the season twice but he is always injured for us. He has shown he is not dependable fitness-wise. We have clearly moved on from him and it is hard to see him get a look in the team now. Left centre back is complete with Gabriel, Mari, with Holding and Luiz for the right, and don’t forget we have Saliba coming back in the summer. Chambers is 26 and should be playing regularly. Even if he was fit, I am not sure he is the quality we need to be honest. He was signed in 2014 and after 7 years he is still not a solid member of the team, we can get a good reasonable amount if we sold him.

Willian Borges:
What a huge disappointment he has been! We terminated Mkhitaryan’s contract only to sign Willian – this is part of why I said we seem to be sabotaging ourselves whenever we try to show ambition.

I can understand the logic behind his signing, but how unlucky can you get when you sign an experienced player from your rival just because you want an immediate impact, and he turns out to be worst than a new signing from another league. It will be difficult to shift him but if we can, we have to do this summer.

Alexandre Lacazette:
He is on this list not because of his quality per se but his age and contract situation. He must regret coming to Arsenal. He was never really trusted by Wenger to begin with. The signing of Aubameyang did not favour him in any way either. He is not consistent enough and has had only one good season with us. He is 29 and he will have one more year on his contract this summer. There is no doubt he will want at least 3 years extension which I don’t think he deserves. We have to sell him this summer so as not to lose him for free AGAIN.


Nicholas Pepe
This could be a bit controversial because he is starting to look like a decent player in recent weeks but if I received an offer for him, I would sell him. His body language and work rate has improved recently but we would have at least scored a goal against Villa if he had a better end product and football intelligence. Now, you can coach the final product, but not basic football intelligence. He only looks decent on the left and we have better options there. If he has to stay, I think he should play as the CF, he is tall and has the strength to hold the ball up and link pla,y but as a winger he is simply not good enough at this level. If he can’t be sold, the FA Cup and Carabao should be his level.

Alex Runarsson:
Don’t be fooled by his stature, he is not a young player at 25. He was definitely a panic buy. I can’t even trust him as third choice. If Leno struggles with aerial balls, who is Runarsson? I won’t waste time on this, he just has to go.

Reiss Nelson:
When Arteta just came in, he obviously wanted to work closely with him, but he didn’t take time for him to realize that he is not good enough for where we want to be. At 21 years old, he should be showing that potential but other than running with the ball, I don’t know what he does best. Saka and Martinelli at 19 are head and shoulders above him in footballing ability. He is a rotation player at best.

Ainsley Maitland Niles
He wants to be a midfielder, fair. But he can’t be that at Arsenal because he is not good enough for the level we want to attain. We have to stop these sentiments if we truly want to be at the top again.

Joe Willock:
I like the fact that he has a unique skill set in the entire squad but he still very much lacks a football brain, I hope Newcastle retain him in the summer. He has a lot of opportunities and from what I have seen, he is not ready to make that step up.

David Luiz:
I love Luiz, I really do. Believe it or not, he is our best defender and it is good to have him in the dressing room. But his errors are not usually ignorable as it is always very costly. My heart really wants to keep him but I think it is better for him to leave too.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang:
Yes I agree I am deluded. Remember I said at the beginning that purpose of the clear out is to have a balanced squad, Well, Aubameyang is one of the reasons why we have an unbalanced team.
I was silently hoping he he didn’t sign the contract in the summer not because I know he is going to lose form but because I wanna see a more balanced team. Last season, If he was not scoring, Arsenal is not scoring. I kept wondering how he managed to do that since he was not always in games. He offers nothing in the middle and limits us on the left due to his lack of skills. He wanted a new bumper contract, so he was more hardworking and was always running, now that he has it, he has dropped massively. His body language is terrible and it pains me to see that Lacazette and Martinelli are often sacrificed for him. He is best suited for a counter attacking team.

Out of all the players above, I would only give a lifeline to Lacazette, the rest just have to go! We have 13 players on my list and only FOUR of them are in the first team, that shows we can do without majority of them.

The squad is over-bloated. We still have Mavropanos, Lucas, Saliba and Guendouzi out on loan. If we can sell some of them and invest in the right players, we can start making more progress.

What do you think?


READ MORE: More bad news for Arsenal regarding Thomas Partey


  1. Except Pepe the rest should go. I still have little hope on Pepe because of his last 2 game. Arteta should work on Pepe’s talent.

    1. This is the problem tho. Someone plays two good (they were above average) games and now everyone thinks they are good enough. They are not. Pepe has to go if a good offer comes.

    1. Yes, I for one , would definitely add tortoise thinking and acting Xhaka to that correct list of others we should lose. I have always said that for WHATEVER reasons, if a player cannot be relied on to be productive at least the majority of his time, then he is no use to us. The balance of effectiveness to the team versus his wages and taking a place better filled by someone else, should ALWAYS be paramount in our thinking. Otherwise they become coasters, no use to us at all. Simple as that.

  2. There are many things that Arsenal “should” have done over the last 15 years and although I would readily agree with every player on your list and your reasons to sell…Im afraid the Arsenal Management will not.
    Many fall into “Ateta’s Favourites” category (Bellerin,Elneny,Aubamayang,Neketiah and Willian.So..unless the Club works out that Arteta is a case of “The Emperor’s New Clothes 2.0” then they will all be staying and continuing to largely underachieve…Of course we can hope that Willian decides that he needs to start afresh and in so doing take a massive dip in pay…and that Neketiah continues to believe that he’s Premiership standard and pushes for a transfer.Otherwise most of the others you mention are too comfortable.It is,however,likely that both Willock and Nelson could move on if any suitable Club is found that has a need for their perceived attributes.

    1. Bellerin lived with Arteta and his family, when he first came from Spain. The only way Bellerin will leave, while Arteta is manager, is if he requests a transfer back to Spain.

      1. Maybe Bellerin gets picked because he’s been a mainstay in one of the best defences in the league this season ,he also homegrown and as been nothing but loyal since joining us ,to suggest he gets picked because he lived with Arteta is beyond silly .
        Like someone said before it’s not the manager who as favourites it’s the fans and they can’t help themselves to have a pop at his picks because he does not pick their favourites.

          1. But Cedric as been playing LB and by form do you mean the mistake he cost us last match
            The last few games he played RB he was slaughtered by fans for his performances in the EL .

  3. Bellerin, Ceballos, Willian, Runarsson, Niles, Chambers, Luiz, Nelson, Elneny, Willock, Nketiah, Xhaka.

    This 12 players would be my clear out list for the summer.

    Then we can bring in 6 players.

    I still believe in Aubameyang and Lacazette, with quality wingers and midfielders around them they will not have any excuse not to score goals.

    To get any striker better than them would cost huge money which we all know Kroenke would not want to bring out.

    1. Laca must go. He won’t improve with age and he’s actually on form now, which might boost his price a bit. There won’t be a better time to shift the Frenchman.

    2. I agree with all the players mentioned in original comment apart from Pepe and I don’t fee we can afford to offload both Lacazette and Aubameyang by all means sell one of them but not both I would also say there is no way we should try and retain as or buyCeballos Like Elneny I can’t see what he actually adds to the team Arteta working on the right track with players he’s shipped out on loan their futures lay elsehere and that includes Torreira Guendouzi and Saliba as well as others, already mentioned.

  4. I just wouldn’t sell Pepe. I think he can actually find his feet soon and start being awesome next season. And maybe then sell him. It’s ridiculous to let go of a player who is half his worth now.

    As for Willian, unless he gets frozen out the same way Ozil and Papa were, he won’t leave. He might not leave even in that case but it’s the only shot the club has to shift this overpriced chelsea souvenir.

    I hope we’re finished with buying second-hand goods from CSKA London. It obviously doesn’t work.

  5. pepe should be kept, but others are supposed to go, aubameyang also can be kept he’s a good player remember somedays back he carried the whole teams results!

  6. – Bellerin: Keep him, because he’s a homegrown, still fast and good in attacking despite not as pacey as before
    – Elneny: Sell him, because he’s not a homegrown and we’ve got too many right-footed DMs already
    – Nketiah: Keep him, because he’s a homegrown, a hardworker, in Saka’s/ Smith-Rowe’s clique and could be good on the left wing
    – Chambers: Keep him, because he’s a homegrown and he did great before his injury
    – Willian: Keep him, because he’s not saleable due to his big wage/ contract length and he played good as CAM
    – Lacazette: Sell him, because he’ll just have one year left, he’s not getting any younger and we need bigger CF to hold the opposition’s CBs off
    – Pepe: Sell him, because he’s highly inconsistent, too one-legged to be Saka’s competitor and I don’t think he’s willing to be an LB
    – Runarsson: Sell this Ospina 2.0, because he can’t handle the opposition’s crosses and bad in set-pieces as well
    – Nelson: Keep him, because he’s a homegrown, skillful and could still be good in LW or CAM position
    – Maitland-Niles: Keep him, because he’s a homegrown, skillful, versatile and has the potential to be better than all our DMs/ RBs
    – Willock: Keep him, because he’s a homegrown, skillful and could be Partey’s competitor
    – Luiz: Offer him a coaching job, to be Arteta’s replacement when the time comes
    – Aubameyang: Keep him, because he’s not saleable due to his big wage and his shots were great when he had enough space to cut inside/ run

    1. gai So you would keep more than half these non productive players and sabotage our hopes of real improvement . Good job you are not in charge, say I.

        1. Very stupid and lame reason using homegrown.. you can buy young players from the league and within the country to replace someone like bellerin for example.
          Man utd did it by buying Wan bissaka.
          Get Lamptey or Max Aarons.

          So we should continue to suffer the ineffectiveness of Bellerin and the likes because they are homegrown?

          1. Wan bissaka cost man Utd 45-50 milllion pounds ,not sure Arsenal would spend that on a world class player let alone a homegrown youngster .
            There is lvls mate unfortunately we are mid lvl in terms of spending

          2. Dan, check how many players Arsenal pays £100,000 or more in comparison to other clubs. Champions League wages for mid table mediocrity. The budget has been mismanaged.
            There are 3 young RB’s in the U23’s, plus excellent LB prospect Joel Lopez.

  7. Apart from Pepe, Laca and Willock, the others should go. Laca is on top of his game and Pepe has started to show why Arsenal Splashed the cash on him. Willock is young and can only get better. If all the others can be off-loaded in the summer, Arsenal would be better and more balance so long as reinforcements are brought in.This season has been nothing but scandalous for us.

    1. “Pepe has started to show why Arsenal Splashed the cash on him”
      What Pepe has shown or is showing is nothing near 72mil worth of talent.
      He hasn’t been anywhere half as good and effective as Bertrand traore or even Raphina have been for their teams. And they didn’t cost that much. That shows how bad Pep’s business is. I doubt we’d get 20mil for him at this stage.

      1. Many fans want Pepe to be good so badly. But he’s just not. His form will decline very soon and we’ll all be back with the same frustrations. He’s not the only player to do this. Xhaka and Bellerin are also frequent (play 2-3 decent games then go back to being poor) type of players. THey’ve got to go.

  8. If we all know the obvious limitations of all these player what fool club would pay any thing approaching the fee Arsenal would charge for their transfer.
    All these players have seen how Sanchez Ramsey Ozil Mustafi Socritis and Mustafi ran down their contracts to win large retirement packages. Clubs would offer 15 mill for Auba and expect him to take a 200 k p/w pay cut. Clubs would pay a max of 20 m for Lacazette and expect him to take a 100k p/w pay cut. So Auba and Lacazette are going nowhere unless the club cut the selling price by 75 % that is a massive loss. Everyone else will also apply the Ramsey Sanchez Ozil run down your contract receive a top salary formula. Worked for these greed merchants and because they all have these ridiculous over valued contract under rock solid guarantee there is f##c all the club can do about it.Arteta like Emery befoe him is stuck with a slew of underperforming overpaid pros crusing toward thei big retirement package. Ozil Sanchez Ramsey and Ozil will be having a chuckle in their palatial mansions and thanking AFC for making it so easy to be paid so much for doing so little.
    Like Emery before Arteta will have to carry this diseased burden for another 3 -4 years at least.

  9. I don’t wanna talk, I don’t have something to say, other than love them or leave them alone. Yall don’t know what it’s like for them I love all my gunners!

  10. I Agree. But here is what most Gooners don’t understand. Moving on those players would take time. Just look at that list you mentioned Gooner. That is why it would take time to rebuild this team. For a long time players were too comfortable with their mediocre performances. A shake up is desperately needed. But patience is more needed from our side. I think we can judge Pepe at the end of the season. He seems to be coming on nicely. Let’s see if he is consistent and improves.

  11. If anyone believes that we will sell 12 players and buy six good luck with that. It also assumes that the players will want to go. Maybe one or two will see their future elsewhere but certainly not the majority on the wish list. Have we so easily forgotten the biggest contract saga in our history. What is certain is that some of the wish list will stick very hard to their contracts and not move till they decide to. The other wish list of six new signings. Lets assume fans want quality players say at the level of Thomas Partey. Well at £40 million and £250k/week it just ain’t going to happen. Arsenal is a business and like all other businesses it has been hard hit by the covid pandemic. It will take years to get the finances of the club back to where they were, so any thoughts of doing what the article suggests is just a dream.

    1. Very realistic comment and I fully agree with you. This rebuild will take some years and I think we have to accept the fact that some players are going to be kept as squadplayers. You can’t have 25 star players in your squad. People like Chambers and Elneny are perfect squadplayers as they don’t ask for much money and accept their role.

  12. You’ll not get an argument out of me about your list.
    Unfortunately I think you’re not far off the mark.

  13. I think people are forgetting how important Homegrown players are. If we sell Bellerin, Chambers, Nketiah, AMN, Nelson and Willock, that’s 6 Homegrown players we are losing. We’ve seen this year that Homegrown players are important. I agree that most of these players are not good enough to start, but we need benchplayers too.

    I can understand most of your reasoning of selling these players. I myself would keep Chambers as a backup to the backup, as he can play CB, RB and DM. He has been unlucky with injuries, but when fit still one of our better defenders. I would also keep AMN, because he can play RB and CM. If he really wants to leave, then we might have no choice. I would love to see Nelson being given the chances that are now going to Willian. I still think Nelson is a great talent, but he needs to play more. I would put him behind Saka and Pepe on the right, and Auba and Martinelli on the left.

    Bellerin I would sell too. I agree fully with what you say about him and I also want to add that in the build-up, he is our weak link. He is terrible under pressure and almost always loses the ball. Willock and Nketiah are simply not good enough (yet). I think we should loan them out and give them the last chance to show in 1 full season they have what it takes, but otherwise sell.

    On the others, I would keep Elneny as I think he is a decent backup, I would sell Willian even though I think nobody will sign him and he will happily stay on these wages. I would keep Laca, Auba and Pepe, as I think he is growing and there is still some potential.

    I would however sell Runarsson, Xhaka, Willian and get a Homegrown GK (Woodman, Raya), cover LB (Betrand), replacement for Xhaka (Locatelli) and a backup for ESR (extend Odegaard/Brandt).

  14. It would be great to have a mass clear out but who the hell would sign for us especially as we definitely wont have cl football and properly not el either so we will have to put up with what we have for a while I’m afraid

  15. Frightening isn’t it. A long list and I can’t argue with the reasonong behind every one. Unfortunately it can’t and won’t happen in the near future. No way you can totally gut a squad that quickly for many reasons (I assume youre treating Torreira and Guendouzi as gone already?). We won’t make much on sales. It’s a buyers market on overage players. Only the top players are retaining close to value. It wont even be a fire sale – we’d have to give some of them away, but they will Ozil us and refuse because few can match what we are paying mediocre players. We won’t get many of the players we want even if we sell all on the list. We would probably even struggle to fill the squad – 12 out and 2 in means no depth. Even if the Krankies chipped in for more, you can’t cobble together a team half full of new players and expect them to gel. It doesnt work like that.

  16. this list is ridiculously long and unrealistic…we need to worry primarily about finally developing a Best 11, which functionally hasn’t occurred for more than a decade…with this in mind the key departures should be Laca, Xhaka, Luiz and if properly replaced, Bellerin…the only reason I didn’t say the most obvious, Willian, is because who would be foolish enough to take him with those ludicrous wages

  17. @Goonerboy
    Funny dat you skipped Xhaka who for me should b number one on the ‘Shipping out’ List!!
    Mine is..
    Granit Xhaka- Sell
    Willian- Sell
    Chambers- Sell


    Eddie Nketiah- Keep
    Reiss Nelson- Keep
    Joe Willock- keep
    AMN- Keep
    Bellerin- Keep
    Elneny-Keep( For me, he’s our perfect Dm in our team.. Aggressive, Hard-working n positive!!
    Pepe- keep Maybe..
    Those so called ‘senior players needs to be Sold ASAP as they have been on dis team for years but done nothing exciting, spectacular or Memorable like Alexis Sanchez, Mesut Ozil or RVP in their Heydays!!
    AMN, Reiss Nelson n Willock have got lots of potentials but Arteta hasn’t given them d opportunities he gives to Nketiah!!..

  18. Sounds great. The problem is, based upon our past recruitment performances, we will just end up with another bunch of average players. Note: two of our most successful recent transfers, Kierney and Partey, spend an awful lot of time out injured. I think Kierney, since he joined, has missed a lot more games than he has actually played. Would any of you actually trust Edu and Arteta to bring in some really top quality players? I am not sure I would! I would feel better if at least Edu was on the this list too!!

  19. I won’t keep Willock, AMN, Nelson and Nketiah.
    Lacazette- Sell
    Luiz- no contract extension
    Willian- terminate contract or sell
    Pepe- Sell
    Runnarson- Sell
    Bellerin- Sell
    Chambers- Sell

  20. As long as we don’t get rid of Xhaka in midfield, we won’t be able to get into the CL places either. Since he came to the club in 2016, we haven’t had a top 4 placement. Before that it was 20 in a row. No player has been on the field longer than he since he was here, and yet I can’t remember a game where he really made his mark on the game. This central position should be upgraded far above all other positions. For me this is the key to even being able to think about the top 4. We have to make our game faster in midfield. Xhaka cannot do that. He’s mediocre and with him, unfortunately, Arsenal too.

  21. Sell Elneny
    Sell Lacazetta,
    Sell Chambers,
    Sell Willian,
    Sell Ainsley Maitland Niles,
    Sell Bellerin,
    Release David Luiz.
    End loan on Ceballos.

    Give chance to Nelson, Nketiah, Pepe, Runnarson and Willock for next season. Nelson, Nketiah and Willock lack chance of play in first team this season. Nelson, Nketiah and Willock should make bodybuilding to make their bodies stronger in aerial and control ball.

  22. Hi gunnerboy,
    I think your article lacks logic or insight.
    Do you still think we should sell Auba after this weekend? If so, that strange. If not you’ve proven the whole knee-jerk reaction that pervades this article.

Comments are closed

Top Blog Sponsors
JustArsenal Top Ten UK Blogs