Arsenal begin January transfer clearout as Edu sanctions exit for wantaway star

Ramsdale impressed by Arsenal colleagues in big England win

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Mikel Arteta kickstarted a major rebuild at Arsenal by bringing in almost £150million of talent over the summer. The Gunners are looking to bounce back to their glory days and become competitive in all competitions, but that has come at the expense of squad players like Mohamed Elneny succumbing to being benchwarmers.

Arteta completely rejigged his squad with the purchases of Benjamin White, Takehiro Tomiyasu, Albert Sambi Lokonga, Martin Odegaard, Nuno Tavares and Aaron Ramsdale.

The fresh wave of talent added to the team, all aged 24 or under, has given the Gunners a new lease of life, and the rise of homegrown talents like Bukayo Saka and Emile-Smith Rowe means that Arteta has a squad that will improve over time.

But this means that those who used to feature regularly are now being replaced.

One player who has fallen down the pecking order at the Emirates Stadium is Elneny, who is set to leave the club.

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According to FotoMac, the Egyptian’s agent has reached an agreement with Arsenal chief Edu to let his client depart the club in January on a free transfer.

Elneny has played just 50 minutes of Premier League football so far this season and is unlikely to see a change of events any time soon.

Granit Xhaka, Thomas Partey, Lokonga and Odegaard are all more likely to play than the 29-year-old, who has been linked with a move to Turkish outfit Galatasary in recent months.

Elneny could be the first of many departures out of north London over January, especially as Arteta has shown previously that he isn’t afraid to clear out the dead wood in his squad.

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Since his appointment in 2019 after the sacking of Unai Emery, Arteta has already waved goodbye to the likes of Joe Willock, Willian, Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Emiliano Martinez and Mesut Ozil.

The loan departures of William Saliba, Reiss Nelson and Matteo Guendouzi showcase that the former Everton star already has an idea of what his ideal squad looks like, and pressure from fans, agents and pundits won’t change that.

Elneny is unlikely to be the only one leaving Arsenal in January with several departures expected.

Eddie Nketiah, Sead Kolasinac and Bernd Leno have all been linked with exits over the past few weeks due to lack of game time.

The effect of Edu and Arteta’s approach on player sales of recent already appears to be benefitting the club, they last suffered a loss back in August against Manchester City.

Ex-Gunners star Theo Walcott recently commended Arteta on helping his former club are beginning become a competitive outfit again.

“I like what he is doing Mikel, particularly with young players,” he told talkSPORT, via Metro.

“He is starting to mould into a really good manager, and I feel like his man-management skills are down to a T.

“I just feel like there’s a fear factor coming back now which is really nice to see. Highbury was the main place everyone feared going to, the Emirates was very difficult to have that same effect.

“But I’m starting to now feel like the Arsenal are coming back to where we all want to see them – an Arsenal that are challenging is always going to be better for the league.”

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