William Saliba could still leave Arsenal on loan

Highly-rated Arsenal defender William Saliba could still depart Arsenal this month having seen a loan move back to AS Saint-Etienne fall through on Deadline Day. 

According to reports, the 19-year-old faces an uncertain future in North London with the domestic window not closing until October 16. 

It is widely claimed that the player could be offloaded to a Championship side on a season-long loan. Reports claim that Mikel Arteta is strongly considering whether to allow the young Frenchman to leave to further his development. 

Saliba is yet to make his debut for the Gunners, and has failed to be named in a Premier League matchday squad. Mikel Arteta has preferred the likes of David Luiz, Gabriel, Rob Holding, and even Kieran Tierney at centre-back over Saliba. 

Former employers St Etienne were keen to bring the teenager back to Ligue 1 with Arteta keen for the centre-back to play regular first-team football. 

Saliba was involved in 17 games for Claude Puel's side the last term in an injury-hit and coronavirus-hit season. However, the French club hit out at Arsenal for scuppering the deal as they failed to submit the relevant paperwork in time. 

Image credits - Sky Sports

A statement from St Etienne read: “Long before the transfer window closed, AS Saint-Etienne had reached an agreement with William Saliba and accepted Arsenal's offer for a one-season loan. Unfortunately, all the administrative conditions could not be met in time, in England, for the completion of the deal. 

“The disappointment is great for ASSE and William Saliba, who was particularly determined to return to a club where he has flourished," he further added.

Fulham were also linked with a move for Saliba, but they instead opted to bring in Joachim Andersen from Lyon. However, Arsenal have distanced themselves from the claims and believe they did everything they were required to do, and in good time. 

The north London club believe the deal was ready to be finalized, and as the receiving club, St Etienne were required to submit registration details first - but never did. 

Mikel Arteta's side went on to secure the signing of Thomas Partey on a four-year deal after triggering the £45m release clause of the former Atletico Madrid midfielder on Monday.

Featured image credits - talkSPORT

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