Arsenal technical director Edu has said there is ‘still a lot to do’ for the club in the transfer market.
The Gunners have splashed out over £100million on new signings this summer, but it appears they are not done there yet – while a host of players could be set to leave.
Oleksandr Zinchenko is the latest player to arrive at the Emirates Stadium, the club’s fifth this summer, with the £32m signing from Man City joining Gabriel Jesus, Fabio Vieira, Matt Turner and Brazilian teenager Marquinhos in north London.
Reports claim Mikel Arteta is still on the hunt for a new winger, having missed out on a deal for Raphinha with the Leeds star joining Barcelona, while the Gunners are linked with an interest in Youri Tielemans as the Spanish boss looks to shore up his midfield.
That search for further reinforcements hints at possible exits, but Edu has now revealed the club’s next task will be to thin out their squad and offload a number of players deemed surplus to requirements.
Among those, the Arsenal chief’s toughest challenge may be to find a club for record signing Nicolas Pepe, whose £72m arrival from Lille in 2019 just hasn’t worked out.
Hector Bellerin, Lucas Torreira, Ainsley Maitland-Niles, Folarin Balogun and Pablo Mari were all loaned out last season and are expected to depart either on loan again or in permanent deals.
Goalkeeper Bernd Leno is also set to leave having lost his No.1 spot to Aaron Ramsdale, while the places of Nuno Tavares and forgotten man Reiss Nelson are also unclear.
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Arteta has spoken already this summer of wanting to whittle his first-team squad down to 22 players, and Edu says outgoings are next on the agenda.
“We have a plan for every single player in the squad and that’s why I said there’s still a lot to do in this transfer window because we have to balance the squad in the best way possible,” the transfer chief said.
“For the players who probably aren’t going to have a lot of minutes here, we have to expose the players to have minutes in another place to keep developing the player, keep the player’s valuation etc, so that’s the way we plan it.”
Asked about Arsenal’s business so far this summer, Edu added: “I’m pleased, but to say how close is difficult because there’s still a lot to do, we are in the middle of the transfer window and things can happen.
“What we have to be is really focused and be prepared for every single situation, opportunities maybe can happen, clubs can sometimes come to us to see if there is a possibility to get players on loan or buy players.
“We just have to be prepared and I think we are very much prepared for almost everything.”
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