Arsenal have loan offers from Italy for Sokratis Papastathopoulos and Shkodran Mustafi, even though their contracts expire in a year.
The two players each have contracts lasting only until 2021, which would make the loan moves seem a bit strange. However, if it’s the only way to make space in the non-homegrown quota at Arsenal, the club might accept it to allow room for any incomings.
It would also get both players’ wages off the books, of course, and potentially bring in a loan fee. The only difference with a permanent deal would be that the clubs bringing them in wouldn’t be under any contractual obligation to keep them after this season.
We know it’s not impossible to loan a player until the end of their contract. We saw Arsenal do it with Cedric Soares in January. It’s just not very common, as you usually want to sell by that point.
In the current market, I wouldn’t rule either move out. But we’re really getting close to the deadline now, so things have to move fast.