Mikel Arteta offers lifeline to Arsenal players facing uncertain futures - ‘This is a clean sheet’

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 (Arsenal FC via Getty Images)
(Arsenal FC via Getty Images)

Mikel Arteta says Arsenal’s preseason tour of America is a “clean sheet” for a number of players facing an uncertain future.

The club took a 33-man squad on their games in Baltimore and Florida, many of whom could yet leave this summer.

Bernd Leno is a target for London rivals Fulham while Pablo Mari, Hector Bellerin, Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Lucas Torreira are all up for sale.

Arsenal have already signed four players this summer and are closing in on a deal to land Manchester City’s Oleksandr Zinchenko while Arteta has also hinted the club will continue to try and improve the squad “until the end of the market”.

A lack of squad depth was cited as one of the major reasons their Champions League challenge collapsed towards the end of the season and finding willing buyers for the players they do actively want to sell could prove difficult.

With that in mind, Arteta has offered something of a lifeline to certain members of his squad.

“Every player that is contracted by the club is treated in the same way, and everybody said on day one that this is a clean sheet to start to build what they want to build at this football club,” he said ahead of Arsenal’s meeting with Orlando City during the early hours of Thursday morning.

“Then we have to make decisions in relation to their needs and the levels that they show.”

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