Arsenal transfer blow as midfielder ruled out for THREE months

Robin Bairner
Robin Bairner
  • Updated: 11 May 2023 14:14 BST
  • 3 min read
Mikel Arteta, Arsenal, 2022/23
© ProShots

Arsenal have seen their midfield summer transfer options reduced with the news that one of the players they had earmarked as a potential target will miss the next three months due to injury.

FootballTransfers exclusively revealed that Moises Caicedo of Brighton is Mikel Arteta’s primary goal for the summer, with West Ham midfielder Declan Rice another alternative.

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EXCLUSIVE: Arsenal eye Bennacer as Caicedo alternative but face Man City

But the Gunners have more than just this pair in their sights. Wary that they could be priced out of a bid for both Caicedo and, especially, Rice, they had been viewing other potential options.

AC Milan’s Algeria international was one of those players who was regarded as a player who might have arrived by Arteta and his recruitment staff, yet the former Gunners academy star’s prospects of a return to the Emirates have likely been ruined by injury.

MORE: Arsenal fear Mudryk repeat with £80m target

Ismael Bennacer celebrates with Brahim Diaz
© ProShots - Ismael Bennacer celebrates with Brahim Diaz

Bennacer faces months out

Bennacer was playing Wednesday’s Champions League semi-final first leg against Inter when he suffered a knee injury in the early stages of the match.

According to a report from Sky Italia, Bennacer will undergo knee surgery that will end his season. Indeed, early estimates suggest that he will be out for at least three months, meaning that not only will he miss the whole pre-season period, but could also be absent for the opening weeks of competitive action in 2023/24.

Although this does not rule out Arsenal making a move, it means that it is highly unlikely that Arteta will follow up any interest at this juncture. Ideally, he will want a player who is able to hit the ground running at the Emirates, and that means playing a full part in pre-season to get fit and familiar with the team’s style of play.

Arsenal will continue their hunt for central midfield reinforcements, but with Bennacer’s injury, they have been deprived of one potentially attractive option.

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