This summer is undoubtedly going to be one of the most crucial in Mikel Arteta’s time at Arsenal.
Depending on where the Gunners finish and how they get on in the Europa League they could be spending to try and strengthen their squad for Champions League football or looking to push to get back into Europe via the Premier League.
However, after announcing losses of £47.8 million for the financial year 2019/20 and having not had fans in the Emirates Stadium for pretty much a full season, finances are going to be tight.
With this in mind they could well look to use their players currently out on loan either as a way of generating funds for summer transfers or as a way of saving millions on buying new players in the market.
Here football.london has taken a look at their army of 17 loanees to examine what their fates could be come the end of the season.
Having joined Arsenal from Reading’s academy in 2015 versatile right back Osei-Tutu was very highly rated at the club and was even on the bench for a Europa League match during Unai Emery’s first season in charge.
However, a run of unfortunate injuries have seen his game time at senior level, and at the age of 22 it may be time to move him on.
He is currently on loan at Cardiff, where despite having hardly played due to a hamstring problem this season, he is thought high of and there is a suggestion that come the end of the season, the Bluebirds could be interested in taking him permanently. Sell.
Coventry manager Mark Robins has already revealed that the Sky Blues have something verging on an obligation to buy Ben Sheaf when his loan spell there comes to an end this season.
Reports suggest Arsenal will receive £750,000 for the 23-year-old defensive midfielder. Sell.
Joseph Olowu will not be offered an extension when his contract with Arsenal expires at the end of this season football.london understands.
The centre back will end his 13-year association with the Gunners when his loan spell at Wealdstone ends in the summer. Release
McGuinness has been a regular during his time on loan Ipswich under Paul Lambert, but has found game time hard to come by since Paul Cook took over.
The Irish centre back toldfootball.london that he is fully focused on playing first team football either with Arsenal or elsewhere next season, meaning another loan spell elsewhere could be on the cards. Loan.
Midfielder James Olayinka impressed so much during the first part of loan spell at Southend that the Shrimpers opted to extend his loan spell in January despite a long-term injury layoff.
He is set to return to Arsenal at the end of the season, but at 21-years-of-age it may be time for him to look for first team opportunities elsewhere. Sell.
The 20-year-old who was on the bench for the Community Shield triumph over Liverpool is still highly thought of though and will probably be sent back out on loan next season with the hope of getting more first team minutes under his belt. Loan.
Clarke has done well during his loan spell at Oldham this season becoming a big part of the Latics defence.
Arsenal will need players for their under-23s team in central defence next season but after tasting first team football that might be a tough sell for the 20-year-old who might look to leave Arsenal on loam again with competition ahead of him so fierce. Loan.
The supremely talented Matt Smith is well known to Arsenal fans after appearing on the bench in their FA Cup final triumph in 2020.
With the Gunners set to potentially be light in central midfield next season, keeping the 20-year-old around for some first team opportunities in the Carabao Cup might a smart move to save money in the transfer market. Keep.
Daniel Ballard has done well during his loan spell at Blackpool, but with competition at centre half so fierce, it’s difficult to see how he will get into the first team next season.
The 21-year-old is a full international with Northern Ireland which makes him more valuable than others on this list, so if Arsenal can find a willing buyer, selling might be the best policy here. Sell.
Left-footed centre back Zech Medley has managed to get more minutes under his belt with Kilmarnock after struggling to get into the side towards the end of his loan spell with Gillingham earlier this season.
The 20-year-old’s contract is due to expire at the end of this season although football.london understands that Arsenal are likely to take up their option to extend it another year.
With Mikel Arteta keen of having left-footed centre backs within his defence, keeping Medley around in case something happens to Pablo Mari or Gabriel might be a smart decision next season. Keep.
Despite some positive showings during his loan spell at Hertha Berlin, Matteo Guendouzi has not done enough to overcome his status as persona non grata in Mikel Arteta’s squad.
If Arsenal are able to find a buyer at the right price the French under-21 international will leave in the summer.
However, this may not be as easy as it seems as the fact that Guendouzi is going into the final year of his contract combined with the Gunners’ obvious desire to sell him means that potential suitors may be tempted to wait year to get him on a free.
Regardless though Arsenal’s intention is to sell the youngster despite his claims that he expects to return to North London this summer. Sell.
It wasn’t for a lack of trying or a disciplinary issues, but Lucas Torreira‘s first stint with Arsenal didn’t work out despite some initial promise.
That pattern has continued in his loan spell with Ateltico Madrid where the Uruguayan has found it tough to get in to Diego Simeone’s La Liga-leading side.
With potential suitors in Italy reportedly looking to sign the 25-year-old this summer, the decision would seem to point in the direction of sell.
The Uruguayan may not exactly be happy to play second fiddle, but with money tight, keeping him around could be a good stop gap until Arsenal go out and sign a long-term midfield option the following season. Keep.
After expecting to break into the Arsenal first team this season following the end of this loan spell with St. Etienne William Saliba has instead found himself back temporarily away from his parent club again.
He has impressed with Nice and led many Gunners supporters to question why minutes in the Europa League group stages and Carabao Cup matches were given to Shkodran Mustafi who ended up leaving the club for Schalke in January.
Regardless of that though it seems that the 20-year-old Frenchman will be returning to the Emirates to finally get a run at the first team next year two seasons after initially signing.
With David Luiz‘s contract up there seems to be a pathway into the side for him, and he will surely be involved with Mikel Arteta’s squad next campaign. Keep.
Despite being something of a forgotten man at Arsenal Dinos Mavropanos is someone who continues to impress in his loan spell with Stuttgart.
football.london understands that he will be given a chance to impress Mikel Arteta in pre-season when he comes back from Germany where he is highly rates.
However, with Saliba set to stay and Rob Holding, Gabriel and Pablo Mari all nailed on to be part of the Gunners squad next season it’s difficult to see where he will get too much guaranteed playing time.
At the age of 23 this is something he desperately needs to fulfil his incredible potential.
The Greek defender has two years remaining on his contract at the end of this season so sending him back out on loan to the Bundesliga or maybe even finding him a club in the Premier League might be the smartest move to ensure that his value is protected. Loan.
After showing promise in the Europa League for the early part of this season, Joe Willock‘s development started to falter towards the end of 2020.
As a result he has been sent out on loan to Newcastle where he has done OK, but it has not exactly been enough to suggest he is ready to be a regular starter in Mikel Arteta’s team.
With Emile Smith Rowe and Martin Odegaard ahead of him in the pecking order at number 10 and Thomas Partey, Mohamed Elneny and Granit Xhaka all preferred options in central midfield it’s difficult to see where he gets in.
The potential return to Real Madrid of Dani Ceballos may mean that Arsenal look to keep him for the sake of numbers in that area of the squad.
But if they are looking to raise money through player sales then they will be hard-pressed to find a player likely to fetch a higher price than Willock who at the age of 21 has plenty of Premier League experience under his belt already. Sell.
Maitland-Niles‘ situation at Arsenal is a great shame as it seems there is a pathway into the first team for him at right back.
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Unfortunately though it seems as though he doesn’t want to play there which is why he chose to move to West Brom on loan in January despite what was a more enticing offer on paper from Southampton who wanted him as a full back.
He has not done enough so far at the Hawthorns to suggest he is of the quality required to start regularly for Mikel Arteta’s side in the middle of the park and looks set to be relegated with the Baggies.
With two years remaining on his contract at the end of this season now may be the time for the England international to move on permanently as fans are left to question what might have been. Sell.