EXCLUSIVE: The four Arsenal stars Arteta doesn’t want to sell

Steve Kay
Steve Kay
  • Updated:
  • 3 min read
Folarin Balogun, Reims, Arsenal, 2022/23
© ProShots

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta is reluctant to sell Emile Smith Rowe, Kieran Tierney, Rob Holding or Folarin Balogun in the upcoming summer transfer window, FootballTransfers understands.

The futures of all four stars have been called into question in recent weeks due to their current playing status.

Smith Rowe has not made a single start all season, having also suffered from injury problems. Tierney lost his place to Oleksandr Zinchenko and has also had numerous injuries. Meanwhile, Holding has made two Premier League starts and is a backup defender.

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As for Balogun, he has enjoyed a brilliant season on loan in Ligue 1 with Stade de Reims, but has been consistently linked with a transfer away.

But FootballTransfers has learned that Arteta would like to keep all four of these players.

Tierney has suffered with injuries
© ProShots - Tierney has suffered with injuries

Holding is considered as one of the leaders in the Arsenal dressing room, while Tierney is important as Arteta does not believe Takehiro Tomiyasu or Nuno Tavares are viable alternatives to Zinchenko at left back.

Indeed, Arteta considers all four of the quartet as very important members of the squad going forward into the 2023/24 season.

Arteta would not stand in the way of an exit if anyone requested to leave, as he believes it is futile to keep a player against their will. This is something he learned from working with Pep Guardiola at Man City.

Two Arsenal players available for sale

The only two players that Arsenal are willing to listen to offers for right now are Cedric Soares and Nuno Tavares, both out on loan at Fulham and Marseille respectively.

Nuno Tavares is for sale
© ProShots - Nuno Tavares is for sale

Arteta and Arsenal are enjoying a fantastic 2022-23 season and are on track to win the club’s first Premier League title in 19 years.

The Gunners are eight points clear of champions Manchester City with nine games remaining, although Guardiola’s team have a game in hand.