With the January transfer window officially open, what are our plans in the market?
Mikel Arteta faced the media at London Colney on Thursday, and said he is keen to make some additions over the coming weeks.
“We're going to try to be in the market to see options that can strengthen the team,” our head coach said. “That's for sure and that's our obligation, and we're going to be working on that. My obligation is to give my opinion on the things we can improve.
“Obviously we have some bad injuries, like Calum a few days ago. That's obviously going to change our plans at the back, but the reality at the moment is that we're not going to be able to do much.
“I’m more concerned at the moment about getting people back from injuries than I am the signings. I want to improve the players I have here, get everybody on board and understanding what we're trying to do. If something extra comes up and we think it's the right opportunity to improve what we have, let's do it.”
Granit Xhaka has been linked with a move away in January, but Arteta stressed that he sees the Swiss international as a key member of his squad.
“I had a conversation with him and I wanted to understand his feelings,” our head coach added. “That's first, and his reasoning why he was thinking it probably wasn't the right place for him to continue his career.
“I gave him my opinion, my perspective, and I told him that I was ready to support him from the club perspective, and I wanted his team-mates to have his back to help him to change his mind. We need him.
“I believe that if we're able to do that, the fans will respond in a positive way. I've seen him act every day, how he trains and how he lives his profession, as well as the quality of the player. I think he could be a really important player for the club. From my perspective, I don't want him to leave. I said no to the club and I said no to him! After, in life, I cannot control what happens.”
Arteta was also asked about Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, and he had a clear message on our club captain’s future too.
“I don’t even think about that possibility [of him leaving] with Auba. I want him here,” he said.
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