Arsenal close to FFP dream scenario as possible £30m Emile Smith Rowe transfer replacement found

Arsenal transfer news as the Gunners look to add to their attacking options and delve into player-trading

Arsenal midfielder Emile Smith Rowe

There is just one week left of the January transfer window but it might have a twist still to come. Despite Arsenal being quiet so far there have emerged fresh reports that Mikel Arteta is looking to add to his squad.

As with most sides this month, there is a need to sell before buying and sporting director Edu Gaspar has so far only been able to shift loan players rather than improve the first team setup. As Arteta seeks to rid himself of unwanted senior options such as Cedric Soares and get to seriously adding depth to his available options, a late surprise has cropped up.

The Athletic has reported that Arsenal are among the teams interested in Leicester attacking midfielder Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall as Brighton, Fulham and Brentford also monitor him. Having been relegated from the Premier League with the Foxes last season, he looks set to make an immediate return to the top flight but may well be on the move sooner.

Only four players in the Championship have more goal contributions than the 25-year-old this season as he thrives under Enzo Marseca. He’s the top scorer for his club after 28 games and has helped create an eight-point buffer to the play-off places.

Dewsbury-Hall was impressive last year as well though and stood out despite being part of a side that went down. His impact in the final third has shot up this season and is now leading to a valuation of more than £30million.

Brighton have not yet been willing to match that, something that puts a potential transfer this month in doubt, but with Leicester challenging not just for promotion but also the title, his price is understandably high. For Arsenal it may seem a surprising move but delve a little deeper and there is logic behind it.

As teams are now finding out, there is a financial benefit to selling academy players and buying from other sides. It is something that has already been seen in the modern market heavily influenced by the new profit and sustainability rules (PSRs) and is likely to be even more commonplace in the future.

For Arsenal, who are yet to make a high-profile sale from their squad in recent years, it is becoming increasingly important. Due to how player sales are accounted for on the books – especially homegrown ones – compared to the split of money over a contract for a new signing, the current system promotes switching between clubs in order to make money.

In the current squad under Arteta it also happens to be that the more expendable options are also Hale End graduates. Both Eddie Nketiah and Emile Smith Rowe have been linked with a move away from north London and it is the latter that is of most interest here.

Positionally there is a big overlap between Dewsbury-Hall and Smith Rowe, especially as Arteta looks to solve the left-midfield conundrum. He is more natural deeper on the field than Smith Rowe too and Arteta is yet to find a true role for the 23-year-old.

Arsenal swiftly rejected proposals from West Ham over a possible loan earlier this month, understands, but RB Leipzig – where he spent a brief period away from the Emirates Stadium as a teenager – are reportedly interested in taking him on. With an option to buy included in a loan offer it could open Arsenal up to not only banking ‘pure profit’ on the books, aiding their FFP position, but also pushing forward and challenging Brighton for Dewsbury-Hall.

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