The prospect of Thomas Partey’s Arsenal exit has sparked a discussion of further incoming at Arsenal with the pressure on Edu to deliver as many as three midfielders not including Kai Havertz.

Arsenal are reportedly open to allowing Thomas Partey to leave the club this summer. The Gunners are already set to see Granit Xhaka leave after a deal with Bayer Leverkusen is expected at €15million (£13million) understands.

These absences were previously discussed as being something of a potential concern this summer if allowed to happen. Arsenal go into the new season needing to add strength in depth to their squad, however, the loss of these two starters creates an even greater need in the market.

Although Jorginho somewhat overtook Partey in the pecking order at the end of the season, the Ghanaian remains one of the best players in his position in the league. Arsenal have had a bid rejected for Declan Rice, upwards of £90million including add-ons, understands and hold an interest in Moises Caicedo, and Romeo Lavia and have made an offer to sign Ilkay Gundogan on a free transfer.

There’s also concrete interest in Kai Havertz who played in midfield for Bayer Leverkusen prior to his Chelsea switch and could offer more offensive threat in Mikel Arteta’s system. However, the facts remain few expected a midfield overhaul this summer but were Partey and Xhaka both to leave this would be the reality.

Two midfielders have always been on the agenda for the club this summer, not including the potential to add an attacking midfield option like Havertz or the previously linked Mason Mount, but with Partey potentially out the door too, it suggests another player would be required.

If Arsenal can bring in three midfielders of this ilk then great, however, there are some question marks regarding if this level of turnover his healthy for the group. In short, the potential to see both Rice and Caicedo come in this summer was theorised by many and surely it was to see both start meaning Partey would miss out in Arsenal’s best XI.

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Therefore, perhaps this entire time the idea Arsenal’s two starting positions with Martin Odegaard would be entirely different has been the plan since the start and Mikel Arteta is confident this is the pathway forward. The Spaniard has changed systems throughout his relatively short tenure of three-and-a-half seasons as the club has evolved and it’s taken them from 11th to a title race in that time.

Yet the concern remains regarding rotation. If the two players who replace Xhaka and Partey aren’t there for whatever reason, will the depth be enough for a campaign back in the Champions League?

That is where Edu Gaspar needs to secure more than just replacements, and the likes of Romeo Lavia need to be added in addition to two potential starts like Rice, Caicedo and/or Caicedo. Mikel Arteta cannot go into the new season with needs identified as feasible options before the summer window to be left unfilled, period.

Arteta needs to be given the tools to take the club forwards again and into a European campaign at the elite level. If he isn’t it will be one of the worst failures in the club’s modern history.

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