8 Arsenal Players Who Could Be Sold as Unai Emery Starts to Rebuild at the Emirates

7 min


Arsenal manager Unai Emery was appointed as Arsene Wenger’s replacement in May – and he has already begun to stamp his mark on his new club.

As well as implementing dramatic changes behind the scenes – including a new approach to training – the Gunners boss has shown a ruthless streak towards players whom he deems surplus to requirements.

Consequently, several of the players who failed to make an impact in the latter years of Wenger’s 22-year reign will most likely leave the Emirates before the start of the 2018/19 season.

Here are eight Arsenal players who could be sold this summer as Emery seeks to revitalise the underperforming Gunners, who finished in a disappointing sixth place in the Premier League last season.

1. David Ospina

Possible suitors: Besiktas, Sevilla, Napoli

Predicted price tag: £5m

The Colombia goalkeeper has endured a frustrating four-year spell at the Emirates, in which he has made just 29 league appearances and has never established himself as Arsenal’s first choice goalkeeper.

When German keeper Bernd Leno joined the Gunners in June, Ospina must have realised that the writing was on the wall for his Arsenal career.

He is expected to join Turkish giants Besiktas imminently, having impressed for Colombia at this summer’s FIFA World Cup. La Liga side Sevilla and Serie A side Napoli are reportedly also interested in the Colombian.

2. Danny Welbeck

Possible suitors: Everton

Predicted price tag: £15m

England striker Welbeck has had a rather odd career in at least one respect – he has been far more prolific for his country than for his clubs, netting 16 goals in 40 international appearances. That’s two strikes in every five games.

In contrast, he has found the net just 15 times in 80 Premier League appearances since joining the Gunners in September 2014.

However, Welbeck has never been an out and out goalscorer, and he frequently troubles defenders with his marauding runs. This explains why Everton are reportedly interested in signing him.

3. Chuba Akpom

Potential suitors: Sint-Truidense V.V.

Predicted price tag: £2m

Like Welbeck, Akpom has been more prolific in international matches than for his clubs – he has scored 20 goals for England, albeit only at youth level, but only nine at club level.

The 22-year-old has spent most of his short Arsenal career on loan to various clubs, featuring just four times for the Gunners in the Premier League.

Akpom impressed last season on loan to Belgian side Sint-Truidense V.V., scoring six goals in 16 league appearances. He is reportedly on the brink of making his loan move permanent.

4. Joel Campbell

Possible suitors: Lazio, Fenerbahce, Galatasaray

Predicted price tag: £3m

Surprisingly, the Costa Rica star is still (technically) a Gunner. He joined Arsenal in 2011 but had to be loaned abroad, as he couldn’t initially obtain a work permit to play in England.

Since that inauspicious start, Campbell has scored just three goals in 23 Premier League appearances for the Gunners, and has endured several frustrating loan spells at other European clubs.

He wasn’t included in Emery’s squad for a pre-season tour of Singapore, and has been linked with Serie A side Lazio, as well as Turkish sides Fenerbahce and Galatasaray.

5. Carl Jenkinson

Possible suitors: Unknown

Predicted price tag: £3m

The right back has represented England and Finland at youth level, as well as winning one senior cap for the Three Lions.

Sadly, like too many talented young players, Jenkinson has failed to live up to his early promise. He excelled in a loan spell at West Ham, before suffering a serious knee injury in January 2016.

The 26-year-old’s career has never recovered, and he spent last season on loan at Birmingham City, where he was once again sidelined with injury for several months.

Like Campbell, Jenkinson was omitted from Emery’s touring squad.

6. Jeff Reine-Adelaide

Potential suitors: Unknown

Predicted price tag: Loan fee

The France youth international joined Ligue 1 side Angers on loan last season, where he gave a highly impressive account of himself, helping Angers to avoid relegation from the French top division.

Nevertheless, Emery seems to believe that the 20-year-old still needs more experience elsewhere before he is ready to feature for the Gunners in the Premier League. At least, this would explain Reine-Adelaide’s omission from the touring squad.

Another season on loan beckons for the promising young midfielder.

7. Krystian Bielik

Possible suitors: Unknown

Predicted price tag: Loan fee

Another potential star of the future, the Polish defender has featured just twice for Arsenal’s senior side, with both appearances coming in the EFL Cup.

The 20-year-old was loaned to Birmingham City in the 2016/17 season, featuring in ten Championship matches, before suffering a serious shoulder injury in 2017.

Bielik was also loaned to Walsall in January 2018, but his persistent struggles with injury meant that he didn’t play at all for the League One side last season.

Like Reine-Adelaide, the promising young defender seems likely to spend another season on loan.

8. Lucas Perez

Possible suitors: Lazio

Predicted price tag: £9m

The Spanish forward scored 17 goals in 36 La Liga appearances for Deportivo La Coruna in the 2015/16 season. However, he flopped in the Premier League after his £17.1m move to Arsenal in August 2016, scoring just once in 11 league appearances.

Perez returned to his previous club on loan last season but scored just six goals in 32 league games – and Deportivo were relegated.

Lazio are reportedly interested in the striker, although Emery’s decision to include him in Arsenal’s touring squad may mean that Perez has a future at the Emirates.

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