Arsenal had high hopes when they splashed £27million on centre-back William Saliba.
Unai Emery was in charge of the Emirates and the man who pulled the trigger on a big-money move as a long-term solution to Arsenal’s defensive issues.
But, after spending last year on loan at Saint-Etienne, it has not yet worked out at the Emirates.
Emery’s successor, Mikel Arteta, is set to offload Saliba on loan to Nice with the defender travelling back to France to complete an exit.
His Arsenal career is not over with the deal not set to include a purchase option, but he is yet to make an impression in the Premier League.
Saliba was one of 12 signings made by Emery during his time in north London.
Here’s a look at how they all have fared having had mixed results, to say the least.
Unai Emery turned to the experienced Stephan Lichtsteiner on a free transfer after taking over from Arsene Wenger.
The Swiss full-back arrived from Juventus where he had played over 200 games and was expected to slot in as a quick-fix at right-back.
But Lichtsteiner had to settle for a bit-part role, making just 14 Premier League appearances before leaving for Augsburg after just one season at the club.
The 36-year-old retired at the end of last season.
Goalkeeper Bernd Leno was a big-money purchase under Emery, joining from Bayer Leverkusen in a £22.5million deal.
The German has largely proved a hit, making the No.1 spot his own and making 89 appearances and counting over the past three seasons.
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Despite an injury last season opening the door to Emiliano Martinez, Arteta gave Leno the nod and sold Martinez to Aston Villa.
He has been repaid after his clear show of faith in the 28-year-old following a string of solid displays.
Experienced centre-back Sokratis did not come cheap in a £14.4million move from Borussia Dortmund.
He was viewed as a shrewd piece of business to add strength at centre-back under Emery.
But the Greek star has flattered to deceive and fallen right down the pecking order since Emery’s departure.
He has not made an appearance this season, being left out of the Premier League and Europa League squads, and looks set to depart either in January or when his contract expires in the summer.
Arsenal appeared to have hit the jackpot with Lucas Torreira early in his Arsenal career.
The combative Uruguayan was a bright spark early in Unai Emery’s reign after a £27million move from Sampdoria.
But he fell out of favour in his second season before an ankle injury suffered in the FA Cup against Portsmouth ruled him out shortly after Mikel Arteta’s arrival.
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After being deemed surplus to requirements, he left for Atletico Madrid on loan in the summer as Thomas Partey came in the opposite direction in a big-money permanent move.
Torreira made a strong start but has struggled under Diego Simeone in recent weeks and there have been some suggestions he could be sent back to north London where his future looks bleak.
Like Lucas Torreira, Matteo Guendouzi looked a shrewd bit of business early on under Emery.
The £8million signing from Lorient won plenty of fans for his combative midfield play despite clearly being raw.
But he did not impress Arteta, who froze him out before offloading him on loan to Hertha Berlin this summer.
Guendouzi, still only 21, has started brightly in Germany but he does not look to have much future at Arsenal whilst Arteta is in charge.
Emery turned to Barcelona midfielder Denis Suarez as the loan signing he craved during his first season in charge.
There was plenty of excitement when a deal was finally done – but it could not have gone more wrong.
A lingering injury meant he made just four brief appearances, making no impact before leaving at the end of the campaign.
Suarez has since joined Celta Vigo permanently and started to rebuild his career.
Perhaps the most low-key signing of Emery’s stint may well prove to be the best.
Gabriel Martinelli was plucked from relative obscurity to join Arsenal in a £6million deal from Ituano.
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The Brazilian was expected to join the Under-23s but was soon thrown into the first-team squad by Emery.
He has continue to go from strength to strength since Emery’s exit despite a recent knee injury, becoming the first teenager since Nicolas Anelka to score double figures for the Gunners last season.
Now back from his lay-off, he’s primed for a big future under Arteta.
Unlike Martinelli, Saliba has not yet been deemed ready for the Arsenal first-team.
Arteta insists he still has a future at the club and has been making strides.
But he will need to impress back in France and continue learning if he is to come back in future and be deemed ready for the Premier League.
Unai Emery has revealed reservations over the signing of Nicolas Pepe since leaving Arsenal.
The Spaniard was keen on Wilfried Zaha, but the club instead splashed the cash to make Pepe their club record signing in a £72million move from Lille.
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So far, Emery has proved right.
Pepe has struggled for consistency and failed to nail down a regular spot in the starting line-up despite showing flashes in his first 18 months in English football.
Emery never got to see the best of Kieran Tierney after injury derailed his first few months at Arsenal.
By the time he was fully fit, Emery was gone.
But the £25m former Celtic left-back has now become a key figure under Arteta, nailing down the starting left-back role and looking primed for a big future.
David Luiz was always a controversial move in an £8m deal from Chelsea.
The Brazilian has had an error-strewn spell at the Emirates but also been viewed as a senior figure by both Emery and Arteta.
Despite some high-profile errors, he was handed a new deal in the summer and remains part of the first-team fold.
With plenty of competition at centre-back, it is unclear how many games he will add to his 57 appearances for Arsenal so far.
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