Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has admitted that the Gunners need to trim their squad before the start of the Premier League season.
Wenger’s side go into the new campaign with a 33-man squad - one of the largest in the English top flight - and a host of fringe players remain stuck on the wage bill even though they’re unlikely to feature for Arsenal in 2017-18.
Goal takes a look at the players Wenger is prepared to let go this summer in order to free up space in his squad and cut down the ever-increasing wage bill.
The defender signed from Newcastle United in 2014 at which time he was France’s first choice right-back.
A mixture of injuries and Hector Bellerin’s rise to the first team saw Debuchy demoted to the substitutes bench where he has struggled for game time since. His hefty salary means that potential suitors have a hurdle to cross before agreeing personal terms with the 32-year-old, although Marseille and Besiktas are currently in talks with the player’s representative over a potential permanent move away from Emirates Stadium.
Gibbs has been at Arsenal since the age of 14 but a series of injury problems and Nacho Monreal’s rise to first choice left-back have seen him fall down the pecking order.
The summer arrival of Sead Kolasinac and first team promotion for youngster Cohen Bramall means Gibbs will almost certainly leave the club whether it’s in the coming weeks or in January. His significantly high salary is another sticking point where negotiations with Premier League sides including Watford and West Brom interested.
As exclusively revealed by Goal in Feburary, the 28-year-old set his sights on a summer exit from Arsenal just 18 months after joining from Spanish outfit Deportivo La Coruna. Perez wants to be included in the Spain squad for the 2018 World Cup in Russia and found game time difficult to come by last season despite a handful of impressive goalscoring performances.
Interested clubs have been unable to reach the Gunners’ asking price so far but following his agent’s meeting with Arsene Wenger and transfer negotiator Dick Law, it’s understood that a loan move to Spain could be on the cards if a permanent transfer doesn’t come to fruition.
The 25-year-old was close to joining Crystal Palace in January only to reject the deal which included a 40 per cent pay cut if the team were relegated. Serie A clubs including Hellas Verona and Sassuolo have made tentative enquiries while Premier League newboys Brighton remain another side to have lodged their interest in Jenkinson.
However, after not being included in the squad for the opening game of the season against Leicester – where Wenger’s men were short of centre back options – it looks likely that another move away from north London appears imminent. Shkodran Mustafi, Rob Holding and Nacho Monreal are all above him in the defensive pecking order and Crystal Palace are another club interested in signing the highly-rated Englishman.
The youngster played a bit-part role in Brighton's promotion to the Premier League last season after joining Chris Hughton's side on loan in January.
Akpom, now 21, is an Arsenal academy product who shot to stardom with his goalscoring performances for the youth teams, but he has struggled to replicate that form while on loan at Brentford, Hull and Nottingham Forest.