Charlie Nicholas has identified Mesut Ozil, Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Lucas Torreira as three players Arsenal should sacrifice to help bolster Unai Emery’s squad.
The Gunners are coming off the back of a bitterly disappointing campaign in which they failed to break back into the top four in the Premier League and suffered defeat in the Europa League final.
In turn, they will be absent from the Champions League for a third consecutive year, and so Emery will face an important summer as he looks to continue to stamp his mark on the squad and improve it.
One of the glaring weaknesses in the Arsenal squad is the defence, as the backline shipped 51 goals in 38 league games last season, giving them the second worst defensive record of the top nine sides in the standings.
With that in mind, Nicholas believes that his former club should sacrifice three players in order to help fund the £60m+ rebuild that he believes is necessary to bring in three defenders.
“We need three defenders to come in which will cost £60-£70m,” he told Sky Sports, as quoted by The Sun. “Who can they get out of the door? If you can get the right offer for Mesut Ozil you’d sell.
“Mkhitaryan can go and you want to keep Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette.
“Torreira seems to be interested in going back to Italy. If you can get the right money: take it.”
Time will tell if such exits can materialise, as although Ozil and Mkhitaryan disappointed last year, Arsenal fans would perhaps like to see Torreira stay on given he formed a fundamental part of Emery’s plans having made 50 appearances last season.
However, as noted by the Evening Standard, he has been linked with a return to Italy to reunite with former boss Marco Giampaolo, who was officially announced as AC Milan coach on Wednesday.
Having signed him for £26m last summer, as per BBC Sport, the Uruguayan would surely be able to bring in a significant financial boost if he were to be sold, but time will tell if he’s a player Emery feels like he could do without.