Arsenal told dream transfer that can alleviate Bukayo Saka concerns after latest injury scare


Mikel Arteta is very intent on making sure at least two quality players are available to him in each position, although there is one obvious gap that still remains in his squad that could be brutally exposed in the coming weeks. In the Champions League defeat to RC Lens on Tuesday evening, Arteta chose to not rotate the majority of his regular starting XI with Bukayo Saka, Declan Rice and David Raya all starting.

The decision to start Saka came as a slightly surprising one, given he hobbled off in the weekend victory over Bournemouth. In the late stages of the North London Derby the previous week, Saka also limped off with an issue but it was soon made clear that both were impact injuries, however his latest problem is certainly not.

In the 33rd minute of the game in France, just moments after signalling to Arteta he was feeling an injury, Saka went down off the ball and looked in some discomfort before the decision was made to take him off. After the game, Arteta said: "He tried to backheel a ball in the first half and he felt something. It was something muscular. He wasn’t able to carry on and we had to take him off." Arteta also told broadcasters that the injury "doesn't look good".

In the summer, after welcoming Declan Rice, Jurrien Timber and Kai Havertz, rumours began circulating that the Gunners were looking for a new right-sided attacker. Ajax's Mohammed Kudus was the strongest player linked with Chelsea and Brighton also interested, but he ended up joining West Ham.

With Arteta clearly feeling Saka needs to play every minute, a back-up option that Arteta trusts is clearly a priority if the worst-case injury scenario occurs. The Gunners have been mooted as an eventual destination for Kaoru Mitoma, who is said to have just signed a new five-year contract at Brighton, and while also suggesting him, former Premier League midfielder Jermaine Pennant has clearly told Arteta and Edu another player who would be a "great" option to sign.

"I know Mitoma plays on the left, but I'm sure they could make him work on the right," Pennant told Lucky Block. "I'd love to see him in the side if they get the right price. He could play on either wing, and he'd light up the Emirates. You've got to be looking at a £60million starting bid. Mitoma is the only one that comes to mind as Arsenal already have good backups, like Trossard.

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"But Jarrod Bowen would be a good one too. I was excited to see him linked with Liverpool. Bowen or Mitoma would do a great job. Two solid replacements for Saka, if he’s rested." With Mitoma aged 26 and predominantly a left winger, Bowen could certainly be the better option, despite also being the same age, his versatility to also play as a false 9 will be seen as a great attribute to Arteta.

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