Raul Sanllehi hints at very different Arsenal transfer window due to coronavirus crisis

Arsenal Head of Football Raul Sanllehi on transfer window
Arsenal’s Head of Football does not anticipate any clubs spending big this summer (Picture: Getty)

Arsenal chief Raul Sanllehi has suggested the coronavirus crisis will change the transfer market landscape significantly and create a ‘new normal’, with very few big-money deals.

The Gunners have already announced that the majority of the first-team squad and manager Mikel Arteta have agreed to take pay cuts to help with the financial impact of the pandemic.

Premier League clubs collectively stand to lose £750million from broadcasting deals if the season cannot be restarted, though there is optimism that players can begin training again as lockdown restrictions ease.

Arsenal spent big last summer, breaking their transfer record to sign £72m man Nicolas Pepe, but Head of Football Sanllehi does not expect a repeat of that and believes few clubs will be active.

Speaking at the Arsenal Supporters’ Forum via Zoom, Sanllehi said: ‘The next transfer window, overall, we don’t know.

‘I don’t think there will be a lot of movement. The feeling is that this crisis is going to bring a new normality.’

Arsenal will publish the full minutes of the meeting at a later date, though did provide a summary of what was discussed with both Sanllehi and Managing Director Vinai Venkatesham hammering home the financial impact.

‘Turning to the economic impact the pandemic is having on football, they explained it has been significant and concerning across all countries and leagues,’ read the report on Arsenal’s website.

‘Revenues from matchday, broadcasting and commercial are all under threat, for all clubs no matter their size.

‘They stressed that even the biggest clubs in the world are certainly not immune from the economic effects of COVID-19.

‘They outlined the numerous measures taken so far at Arsenal to help contain costs. Vinai and Raul said they were particularly proud of our players for stepping forward to support their club.’

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta
Arsenal’s players could be allowed to train in small groups in the coming weeks (Picture: Getty)

Arsenal’s players are currently going to London Colney to train on an individual basis though there is an expectation that group training will resume soon, with the Gunners keen to try and complete the season.

‘They closed by restating the club’s commitment to finish the Premier League season, if and when it is safe and appropriate to do so,’ Arsenal’s summary explained.

‘It is our belief that the sporting outcomes for this season are best finalised on the pitch by players, even if in not in the way originally planned, if that is at all possible.’

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