In the pre-match press conference ahead of Arsenal’s Premier League tie against West Brom, Mikel Arteta has confirmed that the club’s ‘priority’ for January is to trim down the ‘large squad’.
Goal’s Charles Watts asked if there would be a ‘focus’ on offloading players before potentially recruiting any, a notion that the Spaniard duly agreed with.
Arteta confirmed that there were a ‘lot of things’ – referencing transfer deals, that should’ve happened in the summer, but the Gunners couldn’t ‘accomplish’ these for ‘different reasons’.
The former Arsenal captain turned boss then stated that there are ‘some players’ that will leave on loan in January and some that will do so permanently.
Arteta was also brutally honest in his pre-match media duties, adding that the club simply cannot ‘sustain’ the number of players they have in ‘certain positions’.
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Mikel Arteta stressed that the ‘priority’ for Arsenal in the January transfer window is to offload some players with the side having a squad that is simply too ‘large’ to sustain… pic.twitter.com/Rr1WgIzxnk
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“Well, we have a large squad, we knew that and a lot of things that should have happened in the summer, we couldn’t accomplish for different reasons.”
“There are some players that are going to go on loan, going to leave, and that’s the priority at the moment because we cannot sustain the numbers that we have in certain positions.”
“We are looking to do that and and then we’ll see if we have the right opportunities in the positions that we need some more help, we are working with the club to try and address them.”
After back-to-back wins over rivals Chelsea and lower-end side Brighton over the festive period, the threat of a relegation battle for the Gunners has dropped a little.
The upcoming encounter against West Brom, who have recently appointed Sam Allardyce as boss, is a massively crucial one, Arsenal have to be comfortably beating nailed-on relegation candidates like this.
This process is firmly underway it seems, with Sead Kolasinac agreeing the terms of a contract as part of a loan transfer to former club Schalke.