Arsenal’s capture of Mohamed Elneny will result in three current members of their midfield options leaving the club at the end of the season.
The Gunners completed the £5million signing of Elneny on Thursday afternoon, with the former Basle player signing a four-and-a-half year contract with the Emirates Stadium club. The 23-year-old has been handed the number 35 shirt by Arsene Wenger, who is hoping to have received clearance to include his new signing in his plans for the trip to Stoke City on Sunday.
But the acquisition of the Egypt international will signal the end of the road for three senior players at Arsenal, claims the Daily Mail. Mikel Arteta, Mathieu Flamini and Tomas Rosicky are all out of contract at the end of the current campaign, and the tabloid understands none of the experienced trio will be offered the chance to extend their stay with the reigning FA Cup holders.
Club captain Arteta, 33, has been with the Gunners since Wenger lured him from Everton in a £10million deal back in 2011, but he has endured an injury-ravaged couple of years. Likewise Rosicky, 35, who is in his tenth year at the club but has only made 170 league appearances. Flamini, 31, is in his second spell but has never been considered an integral player.
Instead, Wenger will look to reshape his midfield and the arrival of Elneny is the beginning of this process. His next possible target, who will be on the agenda during the summer transfer window, is former Celtic star Victor Wanyama. Now of Southampton, it is understood that the Gunners will scout him for the remainder of the season before deciding whether to make a bid.
Meanwhile, Elneny sees no reason why Arsenal can’t repeat Manchester United’s famous treble success of 1999. The Gunners currently top the Premier League table after 21 rounds of fixtures, are in the fourth round of the FA Cup where they host Burnley, and are also in the last 16 of the UEFA Champions League in which they face the daunting force of Barcelona.
“I am hoping that we win the Premier League and cup this season, and the Champions League as well,” Elneny told Arsenal Player. “Arsenal is one of the world’s greatest teams, and I am very keen to participate positively with my new team and to give my best for the team and for myself. Mr Wenger is one of the world’s best managers; it is my honour to be trained under him.”