Edu given three January loan alternatives for Arsenal’s £18m transfer target – Tom Canton


Arsenal look to be under threat of their squad thinning significantly in January with the African Cup of Nations set to take place this winter.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Thomas Partey, Mohamed Elneny and Nicolas Pepe are all expected to depart leaving Mikel Arteta with a tough task to manage their period of absence. The defence may remain unaffected but with three senior figures out, the youthful side will drop even lower in average age.

The winter transfer widow therefore could be an opportunity for the club to address the AFCON issues in addition to any injuries Arsenal may face before then.

There have already been links to former Arsenal loanee Dani Ceballos. The Spaniard is yet to play for Real Madrid this season due to an ankle problem, but the Gunners are said to be monitoring his situation.

However, Arsenal technical director Edu would be wise to look elsewhere than a player who would come into the club completely cold from the first portion of the season.

Were he even to regain fitness, earning minutes over the likes of Casemiro, Toni Kroos, Luka Modric, Federico Valverde and Eduardo Camavinga seems exceptionally unlikely.

Therefore, The Arsenal Way have suggested three other loan options for central midfield the Gunners could choose to cover the departing Partey and Elneny. Note the options take into account the departed experience of players and aim to target individuals who can add some much-needed quality and maturity.

The players selected also take into account what their motivation would be to play during the loan spell, a crucial part of identifying a temporary option for the team.

Aaron Ramsey

The former Arsenal midfielder has been linked with a move back to the Premier League for some time with both Everton and Crystal Palace credited with interest.

However, there is little denying the Welshman’s affiliation at Arsenal having been at the club for so many years prior to his departure to Juventus. Aaron Ramsey has, however, failed to establish himself in Turin and his exorbitant wages rule out a more permanent move as does his age profile.

Despite this, a six-month loan move on reduced terms could be beneficial for Arsenal and present a simple opportunity to get a quality player through the door with motivation to succeed at the Emirates. Arsenal could look to Aaron Ramsey as a short-term option this winter after the Welshman has struggled to establish himself at Juventus.



Arsenal could look to Aaron Ramsey as a short-term option this winter after the Welshman has struggled to establish himself at Juventus.
Arsenal could look to Aaron Ramsey as a short-term option this winter after the Welshman has struggled to establish himself at Juventus.

Hector Herrera

Another experienced figure and a former favourite of Atletico Madrid coach Diego Simeone. The 31-year-old central midfielder has gradually been ousted from the Rojiblancos midfield by new signing Rodrigo De Paul.

Herrera can provide plenty of versatile cover to the Arsenal midfield in both a number six and number eight position on the field.

He too sees his deal with his parent club expire at the end of the 2022 season and will be motivated to earn a move in the summer with strong performances for the remainder of the campaign.



Hector Herrera has been an experienced servant for Diego Simeone but his lack of game time could tempt him to try six months in the Premier League with Arsenal.
Hector Herrera has been an experienced servant for Diego Simeone but his lack of game time could tempt him to try six months in the Premier League with Arsenal.

Marc Roca

Marc Roca represents the youngest option of the three at just 24 years old. Turning 25 this month, Roca has endured a difficult period at Bayern Munich since making the move from Espanyol.

Bayern pounced on the Spaniard to be the long-term replacement of Javi Martinez. However, Roca’s shift from the standout performer in Catalunya to bottom of the pile in Bavaria did not mix well.



Marc Roca's time at Bayern Munich so far has been tough but still only 24-years-old, Arsenal could get him for both the short and long-term.
Marc Roca’s time at Bayern Munich so far has been tough but still only 24-years-old, Arsenal could get him for both the short and long-term.

He is reportedly unhappy with his situation and a loan spell away from the German club could be exactly what he needs. Considering his age, Arsenal could even look to negotiate a possible purchase option for the player.

With the futures of Elneny and Ainsley Maitland-Niles uncertain, adding more than the much-needed marquee midfielder in the summer could be a necessity.

Roca’s quality is evidenced during his time with Espanyol and his time with Bayern shouldn’t represent the level he is capable of. The Spaniard can still prove a worthy top-flight competitor. Arsenal could take advantage of his drive to succeed and gain ample cover in the process.

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