Arsenal remain intent on signing players before the transfer deadline as the club look to bolster two positions.
Improved form and youngsters taking their opportunities has been the overarching theme of 2021 for Arsenal and Mikel Arteta this month.
Since the 3-1 win over Chelsea on Boxing Day the Gunners have kept five consecutive clean sheets and progressed into the FA Cup fourth round, just a month after some critics suggested they were in danger of relegation.
The January transfer window can sometimes be viewed as a welcome distraction but with finances tight for clubs across Europe, there has yet to be any major deals other than the imminent free transfer of Mesut Ozil to Fenerbahce.
But how will Arsenal’s squad look when the window finally closes at the start of February? Will they end up getting any players in? And can they bolster the required positions this month?
football london takes a look at the possible ins and outs and how the Gunners’ squad could look in a couple of weeks time.
Mikel Arteta has confirmed that Arsenal are in the market for a new goalkeeper this month with Alex Runarsson available for a loan move away from the club.
Runarsson has looked shaky in his few appearances for Arsenal so far, making a high-profile error in the recent Carabao Cup quarter-final defeat to Manchester City.
“We are assessing the situation with the three positions on the goalkeeping area and we will find a different solution, probably in this window,” Arteta said.
Matt Macey has also joined Hibernian which means Arsenal’s only back-ups to Bernd Leno are youngsters Arthur Okonkwo and James Hillson, the latter of whom recently signed a new contract with the club.
Barcelona shot stopper Neto has been heavily linked but manager Ronald Koeman has blocked a potential exit due because they want to keep him.
football london revealed that Arsenal have longstanding interest in Newcastle goalkeeper Freddie Woodman, who is currently on loan at Swansea.
The Gunners are ideally searching for a goalkeeper who wouldn’t need an acclimatisation period to the Premier League and remain in the market to find Leno’s ideal back-up.
Sokratis Papastathopoulos is expected to leave the club this month and remains locked in talks with a number of European clubs.
Genoa and Real Betis have both shown concrete interest, while the option of Olympiacos remains, although it’s understood that the Greek centre back would prefer a move to Italy or Spain.
The 32-year-old wasn’t included in the Premier League and Europa League squads this season and was close to joining Napoli in the previous transfer window.
Meanwhile, Shkodran Mustafi looks set to stay despite interest from teams in Germany and Italy.
The former Valencia centre back wants to leave the club but Arteta is keen on keeping him as a back-up defender due to Arsenal’s busy schedule over the coming months.
Calum Chambers remains available for a loan move and will leave if an acceptable offer is received.
The key area in which Arsenal are looking to strengthen in is midfield. Technical director Edu remains in the market for a creative midfielder to help share the burden on the likes of Emile Smith Rowe this season.
A possible short-term loan option is being explored, with reports previously linking Christian Eriksen with a return to the Premier League.
Norwich midfielder Emi Buendia remains the top target and Arsenal have yet to test the Canaries’ resolve with a formal offer this month.
Emi Buendia is admired by Arsenal but the Gunners have to make a formal offer for the Norwich midfielder.
Interestingly, Norwich boss Daniel Farke came out yesterday to suggest that a January exit won’t happen, with football.london speaking to those close to the player on Tuesday who agreed that they ‘can’t see it happening’ this month.
There have also been murmurs of a potential move for Real Madrid midfielder Martin Odegaard, although it’s understood that Real Sociedad remain the likely option for the Dane this month.
Arsenal are fully stocked in the striking department with both Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang back among the goals.
Eddie Nketiah is reportedly wanted by West Ham to replace Sebastien Haller
Eddie Nketiah was linked with a possible move away but Arteta affirmed in a recent press conference that he wants to keep the England striker at the club.
Nketiah’s fellow Hale End academy graduate Reiss Nelson has attracted interest from Bundesliga sides but looks set unless an acceptable offer comes in before deadline day.
Possible Arsenal 25 man squad:
Bernd Leno, Freddie Woodman, Arthur Okonkwo, Hector Bellerin*, Kieran Tierney, Gabriel, Rob Holding*, Cedric, Shkodran Mustafi, Calum Chambers*, Pablo Mari, David Luiz, Bukayo Saka*, Dani Ceballos, Ainsley Maitland-Niles*, Thomas Partey, Mohamed Elneny, Joe Willock*, Emile Smith Rowe*, Granit Xhaka, Alexandre Lacazette, Willian, Emi Buendia, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Nicolas Pepe, Reiss Nelson*, Eddie Nketiah*, Gabriel Martinelli*.
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