Arsenal’s transfer ambitions received a boost on Monday when the Premier League decided not to prosecute them for violating profit and sustainability rules (PSRs). The rules, which are essentially the domestic equivalent of financial fair play (FFP), have grown in importance over the last 12 months more than they have previously.
It is now possible that the Premier League will sanction a team for breaching financial rules three times in a single year, something that has never happened before. Nottingham Forest and Everton were found to have breached the rules for the most recent rolling three-year period, and now both teams are anxiously awaiting the decision of an independent panel.
Since the Toffees were punished just three months ago for their wrongdoings during the 2021–2022 season, they have already lost ten points due to their inability to meet the permitted loss threshold. Now another blow has been delivered to them.
It has arrived at a favorable time for Arsenal. In addition to avoiding potential punishment—which isn’t shocking, but the mere prospect of it has put a hold on January’s transfer plans after three years of extravagant spending and insignificant outlays—they have also increased their opportunity to take advantage of their rivals.
It occurs at a moment when there is a general lull in league activity. For a while now, the only thing that has affected the midseason is Chelsea’s extravagant spending from the previous season. The only risk-free transactions Arsenal had planned for January 2023 were for Jorginho, Jakub Kiwior, and Leandro Trossard. These deals came with the expectation that Arsenal would be making money from the Champions League later in the season.
The same is true now, but after spending an additional £200 million with little to show for it, finances are more tighter. This is a trend at all the elite teams, who are exploring loans and loopholes rather than making big purchases. However, that doesn’t mean Arsenal can’t gain from the stricter regulations.
There is still leeway even if the Premier League is strictly enforcing financial management and using penalties as much of a deterrent as possible. Although it is unclear what, if any, penalty Everton will receive for the second batch of allegations, their desire to balance the books is evident. Everton’s final appeals may very well turn things around. Selling is the simplest method to accomplish it.
Anthony Gordon left last winter for around £20 million less than they had been requesting over the summer, in part because of this. Because of this, they haven’t added many players, and players like Dominic Calvert-Lewin, Jordan Pickford, and Abdoulaye Doucore have never really been off the market.
Arsenal is intrigued by Amadou Onana, his midfield partner, though. Football.london is aware that the team is keeping an eye on him while they try to strengthen their backbone. Declan Rice needs help, since Thomas Partey is dealing with an injury and his age is making things more difficult.
Since coming, Fabio Vieira hasn’t been able to contribute much, and Kai Havertz isn’t really looking like a midfielder any more every week. Although Martin Odegaard can play as a No. 8, it is dangerous to play two against players who don’t provide much of an alternative. While Jorginho occupies the area, he does not perform the necessary defensive duties.
Onana, on the other hand, is the epitome of a dynamic defensive midfielder who can improve the team’s quality and physicality while also improving ball advancement abilities. His £50 million price tag has proven to be a roadblock thus far, particularly in the middle of the season, but given Everton’s current financial situation, things may change.
As was the case with Gordon in January and Richarlison last year, it is becoming customary to accept lower prices in order to close agreements. Should this remain the case, and it very well could, Everton could be forced to trade Onana for less than what his market value is.
It is, in a way, ideal timing for Arsenal. A transaction is quite likely if money can be raised, perhaps through the sale of academy graduates (Eddie Nketiah, Reiss Nelson, and Emile Smith Rowe have all been connected to deals). This is how the team led by Stan Kroenke is operating, with help from son Josh and Edu Gaspar.
It is the method football is done in the present era and is somewhat required to finance large transactions. It’s unclear, though, how much Everton would be ready to lower their asking price.