As many as seven senior Arsenal players want to leave the club this summer, according to multiple reports after last week’s Europa League exit.
The Guardian also name five senior players who could leave this summer, including four of the same names: Luiz, Leno, Xhaka, and Bellerin. The only name they differ in is excluding Willian and including Alexandre Lacazette.
Fabrizio Romano reports that Bellerin has ‘huge chances’ to leave the club in the summer, and Arsenal will look to bring in a new right-back to replace him. He adds that Lucas Torreira is also expected to leave, with The Guardian also listing Torreira as an option to sell.
Between the three outlets, that’s seven senior players in the frame to leave.
Publicly, Leno claims he’s not pushing for a move and he doesn’t know of other players who are either.
“I am still happy at Arsenal. Arsenal is still a big club, a big name in the world and in the Premier League,” Leno said on Tuesday. “There is nobody in the dressing room who says ‘I want to leave the club, I am not happy here anymore’.
“We still have a good environment at the club and in the dressing room. Of course, at times it was not easy this season, but this is part of football.”
But given this conflicts with all the reports in the English media at the moment, it’s very possible Leno is simply being diplomatic.
Whether it’s true that so many senior players are pushing for an exit or not, you’d expect at least a few to leave. As The Athletic point out, there’s an economic imperative to trim the wage bill – particularly with the prospect of no European football.