Arsenal clear-out needed: Seven players the Gunners should sell to fund a summer splurge on signings

15 Feb

Arsenal’s humiliating defeat to BATE Borisov in the Europa League on Thursday night was another reality check for their manager Unai Emery.

The Spaniard, who replaced Arsene Wenger last summer, has a tough task on his hands trying to get the Gunners competing with the likes of Liverpool and Manchester City once again.

Arsenal manager Unai Emery has had a tough debut season

In the Premier League, they’re only fifth, ahead of Chelsea, on goals scored and are ten points behind third-placed Tottenham Hotspur, their local rivals.

It’s not good enough and supporters may well be worried given it’s been reported the club only have £45million to fund a summer overhaul.

They could get some extra cash, though, if they sell some of their current squad.

And as shown by the loss to their Belarusian opponents on Thursday night, there is some deadwood they should be selling.

But who could they put up for sale? talkSPORT.com takes a look.

Shkodran Mustafi

The German defender just isn’t cutting it if the Gunners really want to challenge the Premier League’s top sides any time soon.

Clumsy when one-on-one and poor with his positioning there is only so long Arsenal can go on with him as a regular at the back.

Signed from Valencia for around £35million, he’s now in his third season and it might be wise to cash in before his stock falls further.

Mustafi could be shifted in the summer

Henrikh Mkhitaryan

The Armenian just hasn’t done the business in the Premier League.

He struggled at Old Trafford, despite winning the Europa League and scoring in the final, and it looked like he might find a home at the Emirates, especially with ex-Borussia Dortmund team-mate Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang joining at the same time.

However, he’s not lived up to the billing and at 30 years old there isn’t too much scope for radical improvement.

A poor showing against BATE Borisov saw fans frustrated and could be a nail in his coffin.

Mkhitaryan failed to impose himself on the game against BATE Borisov

Sead Kolasinac

For all his attacking output on the left, he’s a calamity in defence.

The Bosnian barely fought Stanislav Dragun in the air for BATE Borisov’s winning goal in the Europa League and against tougher opposition is always likely to suffer.

At the highest level a more reliable left-back is needed but given they signed Kolasinac on a free transfer they should be happy to get a but of extra cash in.

The wing-back isn’t balanced enough to be a regular starter.

Mesut Ozil

Seemingly fit to train but then struck by ailments when it comes to game day, the German is now just a drain on the club’s, currently low, resources.

It will be tough to shift the attacking midfielder given the extraordinary £350,000 a week pay packet he gets but they really need to try.

At worst, they need to loan him out and get the club he joins to stump up some of the cash.

He was once the assist king but now the crown has fully slipped under Unai Emery.

Ozil has been a bit-part player for Arsenal so far this season

Takuma Asano

Who? Well, he’s the Japanese forward Arsene Wenger described as ‘one for the future’ in 2016 but since then he’s managed two-and-a-half years in German with Stuttgart and Hannover.

This season he’s played 476 Bundesliga minutes and failed to get a goal or an assist, so it’s safe to say he won’t be in Unai Emery’s plans.

Asano celebrates joining Arsenal.

David Ospina

He could be on his way to Napoli if they activate his purchase option in the loan deal they agreed in the summer.

If the Italians don’t take it up then the Gunners really should look to move him on, even with Petr Cech retiring at the end of the season.

The Colombian never really excelled and would be nothing more than a backup to Bernd Leno.

David Ospina won two FA Cups with Arsenal

Calum Chambers

A versatile defender, the ex-Southampton man is now playing in midfield for a seriously troubled Fulham side.

Now 24, he’s no longer the hot prospect he once was but he is at least putting in some creditable showings in a slightly unfamiliar position.

The fact he’s a homegrown player will make him that little bit more valuable too.

Chambers could leave permanently in the summer