Arsenal are gearing up for a busy summer transfer window.
Despite bolstering his first-team squad last summer with several shrewd additions, Gunners boss Mikel Arteta is expected to do more business after a disappointing 2020/21 season that ended with failure to qualify for Europe for the first time in 25 years.
One of several names being linked with a move to the Emirates Stadium is that of Norwich City attacking midfielder Emiliano Buendia.
football.london had previously reported Arsenal’s interest in Buendia last December, but the club never made a formal approach for the midfielder and switched their focus to Martin Odegaard, who joined on loan from Real Madrid in January.
It’s understood that if Gunners technical director Edu fails in his attempts to bring Odegaard back to north London, then it will be Buendia who becomes the prime target.
If Buendia was to join the club, supporters will be looking forward to seeing the 24-year-old holding the Arsenal shirt at his unveiling – but what squad number could the midfielder take in N5?
Well, it would appear that Buendia has one favoured option.
He’s worn no.17 for Norwich ever since joining from Getafe in the summer of 2018 and that was his shirt number during a season-long loan spell at Cultural Leonesa.
At Arsenal, the incumbent no.17 is Cedric Soares, who has not made an appearance since the Europa League quarter-final second-leg win over Slavia Prague last month.
Unless the Portugal international is sold or is willing to vacate his shirt number, then Buendia would have to look elsewhere if he was to become the defender’s teammate at some point this summer.
With that said, what other squad numbers would be available to the midfielder if he does sign for Arsenal in the summer transfer window?
Below, we take a look to see what numbers are currently free at Arsenal.
Sokratis vacated the iconic No.5 upon leaving the Gunners in the January transfer window. Although it may not be vacant for too much longer if Partey gets his way this summer.
Dani Ceballos took over the No.8 shirt after it was vacated by Aaron Ramsey and used it during his two-year loan spell.
However, he has already bid farewell to Arsenal and that means the shirt number will be up for grabs once again next season.
Worn by the likes of Dennis Bergkamp, Jack Wilshere, and Robin van Persie, the No.10 became vacant in January when Mesut Ozil joined Fenerbahce on a free transfer.
Shkodran Mustafi was another high-profile exit in January and that means his No.20 shirt is up for grabs.
David Luiz will leave Arsenal when his contract expires at the end of next month and the No.23 will soon become vacant.
Emiliano Martinez’s £20m move to Aston Villa last summer meant he vacated the no.26 shirt.
There are several more shirt numbers available at Arsenal right now, but that may not be the case in the summer when their loan stars return to the club.
William Saliba, Ainsley Maitland-Niles, Konstantinos Mavropanos, Joe Willock, Matteo Guendouzi, and Sead Kolasinac all spent time out on loan this season and it meant the No.4 , No.15 , No.27 , No.28 , No.29 , and No.31 had been up for grabs.
Interestingly, Arsenal did give Lucas Torreira’s No.11 to Odegaard in January, despite the fact that the midfielder was only on loan at Atletico Madrid for one season.
Source by Football London