Despite not hitting top form in the 2023/24 season, Arsenal maintains its position in the top four of the Premier League table. They are also set to compete in the Champions League knockouts in the coming year, unless there is a significant downturn in performance.
In the midst of Mikel Arteta’s pivotal 2018 season and his strategic vision, following a substantial summer investment, expectations are high after the promising 2022/23 season. Fans anticipate the Gunners to elevate their performance this season as they navigate multiple competitions.
Last January, the additions of Leandro Trossard and, to a lesser extent, Jorginho, played a crucial role in sustaining Arsenal’s title challenge. To continue meeting Arteta’s objectives in the second half of the 2023/24 season, the club may need to bring in one or two new faces during the winter transfer window. However, financial constraints due to Financial Fair Play issues mean that Arsenal must sell players before making new acquisitions.
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1. Aaron Ramsdale
Despite initial expectations that Ramsdale would be a cornerstone of Arteta’s project, the summer acquisition of David Raya has altered his prospects significantly. Raya has become the preferred choice, starting in every Premier League and Champions League match since September 17. Ramsdale has been sparingly used, making only two appearances in the Carabao Cup. While the club may be hesitant to part ways with Ramsdale mid-season, a substantial offer, around £50 million, might tempt them.
2. Emile Smith Rowe
Smith Rowe, on the verge of establishing himself, suffered another injury that kept him out of Arsenal’s last four games before the November international break. With Xhaka leaving and Havertz attempting to fill the void, Smith Rowe has an opportunity to reclaim his spot. However, Arteta has concerns about his defensive abilities in the 4-4-2 scheme. After a challenging 2022/23 season, Smith Rowe’s injury troubles may make him a disposable asset in the upcoming winter window.
3. Thomas Partey
Arsenal’s decision not to transfer Partey in the summer may have had financial repercussions. Although a formidable player when fit, Partey’s recurring fitness issues, culminating in thigh surgery, are expected to keep him out for the rest of the season. His struggles have prompted the club to seek another midfielder in the January transfer window. While European suitors may wait until summer due to his injury, it’s likely that Saudi clubs will express interest if Arsenal puts him up for sale.