Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has said that he is in discussions with technical director Edu Gaspar and the club as they put their plan together ahead of the January transfer window, according to James Olley of ESPN.
The January transfer window is known to be a challenging one as clubs prefer not to lose their star players in the middle of the season. The Gunners boss has hinted that the club might need to sell players before they can make new signings as they are restricted by the size of their squad.
The North London side were unable to sell a number of their fringe players like Shkodran Mustafi, Sead Kolasinac, Sokratis and Mesut Ozil in the summer. Sokratis and Ozil were left out of the club’s Premier League and Europa League squads and could leave next month if an offer that satisfies all parties is received.
Mikel Arteta is understood to be targeting a creative midfielder and a central defender. Red Bull Salzburg’s Dominik Szoboszlai, Lyon’s Houssem Aouar and Inter Milan’s Christian Eriksen have been linked with moves to the Emirates. The Gunners were keen on signing Aouar in the summer but were unable to agree on a fee with the French side. It will be interesting to see if they go back in for the player in January or decide to pursue other options.
On the January transfer window, Arteta said:
“We are planning, talking with [technical director] Edu and with the club about the things we can do in January.”
“But at the moment it’s pretty difficult, unpredictable as well. In terms of places, we are very restricted in the moment. We’ll see what happens, I think things will move in the market, we will be prepared, we will need to do something knowing the limitations of that market in January and the limitations we have as well to sign players.”
It is crucial that the North London club support their manager and help him bring in reinforcements next month. Arsenal have made their worst start to a season in Premier League history. They rank above just three sides in the league for shots taken in the 2020/21 campaign and have scored ten goals in their first ten games.
Arteta is at the start of his project but poor results so far this season are starting to increase the pressure on him. Anybody who watches football will be able to tell that this team needs a creative player in the middle of the park who can provide defence-splitting passes and help the likes of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexander Lacazette find the back of the net.
If the Gunners fail to plug this gap, it is difficult to envisage their young manager changing their fortunes drastically between now and the end of the season and if that is the case, many more questions will be asked of him. The club must back him now.