Four Arsenal Players Who Could Benefit From A January Loan Move
Stuart MacFarlane / Contributor

As the January transfer window opened, a section of disgruntled players at Arsenal have been made available for transfer with the likes of Sead Kolasinac joining FC Schalke and outcasts such as Mesut Ozil and Sokratis Papastathopoulos being linked with moves to Fenerbahce and Genoa respectively.

Skhodran Mustafi is amongst those being ousted from the club, it is evident that their long-term futures reside elsewhere. 

Moreover, with the emergence of exceptionally talented Hale End youngsters coming through in recent years, most notably Bukayo Saka and Emile Smith Rowe, competition for places is fierce.

Naturally, there have been a handful of players who have succumbed to this generational talent and would thus profit from a six-month loan move in order to gain playing time with the view of competing for a starting berth upon their return in summer. 

With that said, here are four players who would benefit from a January loan move away from the Emirates.

Joe Willock

21-year-old Joe Willock has been at the club since the age of four and burst onto the scene in September 2017, making his senior debut in the EFL Cup in a 1-0 victory over League One outfit Doncaster Rovers.

It has not been plain sailing for the England U21international, who has since struggled to cement his place in Arsenal's midfield, competing against the likes of regular fixtures Granit Xhaka, Dani Ceballos and Mohammed Elneny.

Additionally, with the return of Thomas Partey and the emergence of Smith Rowe, Willock's chances at first-team action may become even more few and far between.

Therefore a six-month loan move in order to establish himself as a permanent first-team midfielder makes sense as he would be able to illustrate to Mikel Arteta exactly what he is capable of, whilst Arsenal will save money on wages and free up a spot for any additional incomings. 

Reiss Nelson

Another Hale End academy prospect who came through the academy alongside Willock is Reiss Nelson. The tricky and pacy winger made his debut under former boss Arsene Wenger in September 2017 in a 3-1 victory over FC Koln in the Europa League after replacing Theo Walcott in the 83rd minute.  

Nelson's potential was recognised from an early age, although his raw ability needed fine tuning. A subsequent loan to Bundesliga side Hoffenheim in the 2018/19 season proved successful, notching seven goals in 29 appearances for Die Kraichgauer. 

Since his return to the club, Nelson has found consistent first-team appearances hard to come by, with the likes of Saka and Nicolas Pepe preferred to the 21-year-old on the right wing. 

A loan move could therefore benefit the Englishman, with a return to form potentially forcing himself into starting contention, or at least increasing his value if the club look to move Nelson on in the summer transfer window.

Eddie Nketiah

Former Chelsea academy prospect Eddie Nketiah had been making headlines at U23 level before his promotion to the first team in the 2019/20 season, and it is clear to see why.

His natural goalscoring ability is matched by his prowess in the penalty area, reinforcing his reputation as a fox-in-the-box. The 21-year-old made his senior Arsenal debut against BATE Borisov in September 2017, coming on for Willock in the 89th minute.

England's all-time record goalscorer for the U21s had continued to impress, and a loan move to Leeds United in the 2019/20 season had gifted the striker much needed game time. His opportunities started to diminish as Leeds pushed for promotion and was subsequently recalled. 

With the return to form of Alexandre Lacazette and emergence of fellow Hale End graduate Folarin Balogun, it appears Nketiah's time for another loan move has come.

A possible loan move to a league that suits his playing style, notably the German Bundesliga or Italian Serie A would almost certainly assist Nketiah's transition from a bench warmer to a first-team starter in the coming years.

Calum Chambers

While the aforementioned Balogun was a contender to feature in this article, his contract is expiring in the summer and thus far there have been no solid voices regarding an extension, hence why he misses out to Calum Chambers

The former Southampton defender proved to be an integral member of Arsenal's squad in the 2015/16 season, consistently featuring at either centre back, right back or centre midfield, illustrating his versatility.

However, a cruciate ligament injury in December 2019 halted his progression and has only just come back to full fitness a year later. 

Whilst Chambers has competition coming in the form of England compatriot Rob Holding and summer signing Gabriel Magalhaes, his quality in a number of positions proves he can be useful for squad depth and would thus benefit from a loan move to increase his fitness, ready for him to join back up with the squad in the summer.

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