Arsenal made a late enquiry over 24-year-old Barcelona left-back Junior Firpo, according to reports in Spain.
Gerard Romero reports that Arsenal called up Barcelona on deadline day to ask about the availability of Junior Firpo. The assumption is that the Gunners wanted Firpo to act as their alternative to the currently-injured Kieran Tierney.
Personally, I find the claims a little difficult to believe. By deadline day, Arsenal would have been well aware that they weren’t going to move on any of their non-homegrown players after Shkodran Mustafi. As a result, they didn’t have squad space for Firpo.
Signing the Barcelona defender would have left them overstocked in the Premier League squad and forced to leave someone out. Even worse, they wouldn’t even have had the option to include all their new signings in the Europa League squad.
You can only make three additions to the squad in January, and Arsenal would’ve had Mat Ryan, Martin Odegaard, Junior Firpo, and Gabriel Martinelli to add. Martinelli wasn’t in the squad for the first half of the campaign due to his injury problems.
It’s very hard to imagine Arsenal leaving Odegaard or Martinelli out, and the club would probably rather gamble on Cedric at left-back (by excluding Firpo) than Runarsson in goal (by excluding Ryan).
As a result, Firpo could only have played in the Premier League, and even that would come with the added drawback of needing to exclude someone else.
Perhaps Arsenal were just placing an initial call to register their interest ahead of a summer move. That seems like a more likely possibility, though it would still be better for the Gunners to look at homegrown players for backup roles in the summer.
Either way, this apparent call from Arsenal didn’t lead to anything on deadline day.