Arsenal academy manager Per Mertesacker has hinted that Reiss Nelson and Ainsley Maitland-Niles may have to leave the club in the near future. Both players had spells out on loan last season and could be exiting permanently in this window.
Nelson spent the entirety of the campaign at Dutch side Feyenoord. He made 31 appearances in all competitions, scoring four goals.
He was part of the Feyenoord side that lost to Roma in the Europa Conference League final in May. Maitland-Niles was an unused substitute for their Italian opponents after moving on loan in January.
The 24-year-old was unable to establish himself as a regular under Jose Mourinho in Rome. Mertesacker was happy to see the duo playing abroad but admits it will be down to manager Mikel Arteta and technical director Edu on whether their development continues at the Emirates.
He said of Pepe: “I have seen when I was coaching there that he has major potential. Hopefully we can see that at Arsenal.”
Arsenal have been active in the transfer market, with Gabriel Jesus the latest acquisition at £45million. Mertesacker has been impressed by the work done by Arteta and Edu, especially for Jesus.
He commented: “We convinced him to come fairly early in the transfer window, not wait too long. I think we are proactive.
“We’re making our points clear to the player, families, agent and by the looks of it we’ve got the right arguments and players are willing to come to us to bring us back to the Champions League and where we belong.”