Mikel Arteta is a beloved figure at Arsenal. However, that might be tested given the recent transfer rumors.
While the Gunners and bitter Premier League rivals Chelsea have done business before, the two clubs typically don't sell key players to one another willingly. However, the North London giants could buck that trend this summer.
As revealed by the Daily Mail, the Blues are plotting a late move for Hale End graduate Emile Smith Rowe, the highly-rated Englishman who is exceptionally talented and beloved at the Emirates Stadium irrespective of his lack of minutes on the pitch.
While the 23-year-old is not the only player being targetted by the club, Pochettino remains adamant on adding another attacking midfielder after missing out on Mohammed Kudus to West Ham.
Fast forward to today and according to the Times, the Gunners are open to selling the Englishman to Chelsea. Smith Rowe has fallen down the pecking order and while the midfielder was given opportunities to impress during the pre-season, which he did, he has had barely any minutes on the pitch since the season started.
Emile was a late sub in the Community Shield, getting roughly three minutes in that victory over Manchester City. However, the academy graduate has not played since and has been on the bench for all three Premier League outings so far, watching teammate Martin Odegaard start all three times while Fabio Vieira enjoyed a brilliant cameo off the bench against Fulham.
As a result, Arsenal's no.10 is not happy at the Emirates Stadium. No price tag has been set but the player has reportedly been offered to other Premier League clubs as well. Another important factor, probably even the driving factor, is the Gunners' need to raise funds after another spending spree.
While Folarin Balogun and Kieran Tierney have left the club, the American striker did not raise the fee Arsenal were hoping for while the Scottish left-back left on loan to Real Sociedad. In fact, this is the same reason why Gabriel Magalhães could depart as the Brazilian center-back is garnering interest from the mega-rich Saudi Pro League.
This update has not gone down well among Arsenal fans but only time will tell how this will unfold between now and Deadline Day. As for Mikel Arteta and his players, their focus will be on Sunday's upcoming clash against Manchester United live on Peacock as the North London giants aim to bounce back from their 2-2 draw at home to 10-man Fulham.