Football Season Guide



Ben White (def) Brighton; Albert Sambi Lokonga (mid) RSC Anderlecht; Nuno Tavares (def) Benfica; Lucas Torreira (mid) Atletico Madrid – end of loan; Sead Kolasinac (def) Schalke – end of loan


Mattéo Guendouzi (mid) Marseille – on loan; William Saliba (def) Marseille – on loan; Dejan Iliev (gk) SKF Sered – on loan; David Luiz (def) – released; Dani Ceballos (mid) Real Madrid – end of loan; Mathew Ryan (gk) Brighton – end of loan; Martin Ødegaard (mid) Real Madrid – end of loan

Following a below-par 2020/21 campaign, Arsenal finished eighth for the second consecutive season and they failed to qualify for European football for the first time in 26 years. The Gunners got off to a great start last summer, when they won the Community Shield against Liverpool, but didn’t manage to build on their momentum. After parting ways with experienced centre-back David Luiz, Arsenal broke their defensive transfer record by signing promising centre-back Ben White from Brighton. Mikel Arteta’s side also brought in Albert Sambi Lokonga to strengthen their midfield and Nuno Tavares to provide Kieran Tierney with some healthy competition at left-back. Following the departure of Martin Ødegaard, who returned to his parent club Real Madrid, Arsenal are expected to sign a couple of midfielders, as well as a goalkeeper and a right-back to add depth to the squad. White’s signing is expected to improve Arsenal’s building from the back and further strengthen a defence that conceded fewer goals than any other Premier League club bar Manchester City and Chelsea last season. Meanwhile, academy graduates Bukayo Saka and Emile Smith Rowe have both shined under Arteta and demonstrated in 2020/21 that they have what it takes to be considered as two of the most promising youngsters in the league. In order to be more competitive in the Premier League and secure European qualification next season, the Gunners should improve their scoring output, as they netted fewer goals than all seven teams who finished above them last term.


Securing a European position and competing for a domestic cup. The fact that Arsenal will not play in Europe next season has its pros and cons. It’s a hard blow dealt to the team’s prestige, but the Gunners can focus on domestic competitions and pursue a top-6 spot.