Arsenal’s giant wage bill is restricting Unai Emery in the transfer market according to The Daily Telegraph.
New Arsenal boss Emery managed to bring in five new faces to the Emirates this summer at a total cost of £71million, while he managed to raise over £5million from moving on Lucas Perez and Chuba Akpom, according to Transfermarkt.
This made Arsenal the eight biggest spenders of the summer in the Premier League, behind rivals Liverpool, Manchester United and Chelsea.
However, the new signings appear to have impacted the wage bill, as well as new contracts for Granit Xhaka and Ainsley Maitland-Niles, and the annual bill is now well in excess of £200million, according to the report.
The impact of this spending means Arsenal will be unable to bring in any new signings in January without offloading players, although the new commercial deals next summer should help alleviate any difficulty.
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It was always going to be a difficult task for Unai Emery to overhaul a squad so rooted in over two decades of Arsene Wenger’s ideas.
He has managed to bring in some signings but with Lucas Torriera the most expensive outlay at £27million, it’s a long distance from the sort of money Arsenal’s rivals are splashing on players at the moment.
That’s not to say the signings won’t prove to be better than more expensive purchases, but it’s telling that Emery’s total summer budget was about what Chelsea spent on a new goalkeeper.
It will take time and money to change the squad after such a long reign under Wenger, but it appears Arsenal aren’t prepared to throw money at the Emery project just yet.
They’ll have to make do with the current squad at least until next summer and maybe that’s when the real overhaul will begin to take shape.