With the transfer window slamming shut on Monday evening, Arsenal’s squad for the rest of the season is now finalised, and this time there shouldn’t be anyone left out.
Edu and Mikel Arteta managed to bring in two players on loan, Maty Ryan from Brighton and Martin Odegaard, a highly rated attacking midfielder, from Real Madrid. However, whilst no permanent signings were made, there were plenty of deals in the sales department.
In total, Arsenal sold 9 players this January, including Mesut Ozil, Sokratis and Shkodran Mustafi on free transfers and William Saliba, Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Joe Willock on loans. With all things considered, have Arsenal had a successful transfer window?
You would struggle to count on your hands the number of problems Arsenal had coming into the window, however many would argue the main problems were to get rid of deadwood, bring in an attacking midfielder and buy a back-up goalkeeper.
Impressively, Arsenal managed all of these things, even if many of the permanent departures were through contract terminations. The loan purchase of Maty Ryan was a welcome shock to everyone, with not even a rumour being mentioned of a deal until its announcement, and the signing of Martin Odegaard was very well received, especially given the limited options available in the market.
On the other hand, Arsenal failed to bring in a back-up left back, an issue that became very apparent when seeing how the injury of Kieran Tierney affected the Gunners’ displays down the left-hand side. However, the performances of Cedric in that position have certainly given a good boost of confidence to supporters that it won’t be too great an issue in the short-term.
Arsenal managed to loan out Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Joe Willock to Premier League sides and found William Saliba a short-term home in Ligue 1, however the failure to loan Reiss Nelson and Runar Alex Runarsson are small faults in what was a good window for getting rid of players.
Nelson has had limited game time this season, with injuries playing a part in that, so a loan for the second half of the season would’ve been very beneficial to him. However, given the competition for places out wide, this almost feels like a wasted season for the Englishman in terms of his development.
With that being said though, it should be considered a very good window from Arsenal, especially given the financial circumstances in regards to Covid-19. While there are certain things that Mikel Arteta and Edu will be disappointed in, few would be able to say that the Gunners haven’t had a productive January transfer window.