Monday, January 8, 2024

Arsenal transfer round-up: Mikel Arteta makes damning admission amid Ivan Toney blow

Arsenal’s miserable run of form has continued with a third successive defeat, this time eliminating them from the FA Cup at the third round stage.

The Gunners went in to the clash at home to Liverpool off the back of two league defeats by West Ham and Fulham respectively and were hoping to shake them off, proving they were up for the cup. Instead, a Jakub Kiwior own goal followed by a Luis Diaz strike ensured their winless run continued.

A display that was littered with a number of missed chances highlighted Arsenal’s need for attacking additions, but manager Mikel Arteta was not particularly hopeful on that topic come full-time.

Arteta makes striker admission

The Gunners boss conceded it “doesn’t look realistic” when asked if Arsenal were planning on signing a new striker before the transfer window closes at the end of this month.

Speaking to BeIN sport about the prospect of landing attacking reinforcements, Arteta admitted: “At the moment it doesn’t look realistic. My job is to improve the players we have.”

Brentford forward Ivan Toney has long been the subject of rumours linking him with a move to the Emirates, but it now appears Arsenal are being priced out of a deal for the Bees talisman. Thomas Frank’s side are rumoured to want as much as £100m for their star man, which is certainly not a fee the Gunners could meet in the middle of the season.

Jesus injury update

Gabriel Jesus missed out on the game against Liverpool due to yet another injury, in turn only ensuring the clamour for another striker to be signed grows louder from disgruntled fans.

Arteta issued an update on the forward after the game, claiming: “He had some pain in his knee. We have done a scan that shows something.” The Spaniard was also pressed for comment on whether there’s any danger that Jesus’ injury could be worse than first feared, but Arteta kept his cards close to his chest as he added: “Hopefully not.”

The lack of certainty in the Arsenal manager’s assessment will spark fears that the Gunners are left relying on Eddie Nketiah as their only recognised striker for what is a crucial part of the run-in after the winter break.

Arsenal set Nketiah price

The Arsenal academy graduate has fallen down the pecking order at the Emirates Stadium and failed to get off the bench until the 81st minute. Premier League rivals Crystal Palace have been linked with a switch, while West Ham are also believed to be keeping tabs on the situation.

According to the Daily Star, the Gunners want to receive a fee around £30m mark should they choose to cash in on Nketiah.

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