From Ozil to Saliba – How every Arsenal player Arteta has exiled have fared

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It might not be going so well for Arsenal at the moment but Mikel Arteta remains dedicated to booting out the players he has deemed as not good enough.

When the Spaniard arrived, one of his main missions was to bring in his own style and signing youngsters that he could develop and suit his tactics.

And that would mean making room in the squad with many players from the Arsene Wenger and Unai Emery eras on the chopping block.

They include the likes of Mesut Ozil, Shkodran Mustafi, William Saliba and Emi Martinez – but how are they getting on now?

Matteo Guendouzi

After falling out with Arteta, Guendouzi has never played for Arsenal again and was initially sent out on loan to Hertha Berlin before joining Marseille this summer.

The midfielder just scored his first goal for the club at the weekend and is settling in well at a club renowned for maverick talents.

Kostas Mavropanos

One of the first to leave under Arteta’s watch, Mavropanos returned in the summer from a loan at Stuttgart only to rejoin.

This time, though, the deal includes an option to buy that will likely see the Greek defender leave Arsenal for good.

Sead Kolasinac

When the Bosnian returned to Schalke on loan, it was thought that this would be the end of Kolasinac at Arsenal.

So it came as a surprise to fans to see the defender lining up against Manchester City at the weekend – to disastrous results as they lost 5-0.

Sokratis Papastathopoulos

The defender’s time at Arsenal had been blighted by some bizarre moments at the back while his ability on the ball did not suit Arteta’s tactics.

He returned to Greece last year with Olympiacos where he is a mainstay in defence.

Mesut Ozil

After being completely ostracised by Arteta, Ozil was eventually allowed to leave on a free transfer to Fenerbahce.

But it has been tough a start to life in Turkey for the midfielder who has scored just once so far over 15 games.

Shkodran Mustafi

Known for his comical errors at Arsenal, it was only a matter of time before Arteta ran out of patience and he was axed in February 2021.

He retuned to Schalke where he played before Valencia but was released just three months into his contract after some miserable form.

Henrikh Mkhitaryan

Mkhitaryan was never a hit at the Emirates and was eventually allowed to leave for AS Roma, initially on loan before joining for no fee under Arteta’s watch.

Since moving to Italy, the Armenian’s form has returned and he scored 15 times last season.

William Saliba

Arteta once said he regretted leaving Saliba out of his Europa League squad but then never actually amended his mistake, instead loaning him to OGC Nice.

This summer, the Frenchman – once described as one of the best talents in France – joined Guendouzi at Marseille for the season.

Joe Willock

After demanding first-team football, Newcastle came in and signed the midfielder on loan until the end of the season in January where he was a massive hit.

A permanent transfer followed this summer where the Toon will hope he can replicate his antics from just months before.

Lucas Torreira

Despite Arsenal being short in midfield, Arteta told Torreira he was not part of his plans and he was allowed to join Atletico Madrid – where his form did not pick up.

Still in north London but with little hope of returning to the first-team fold, the Uruguay international is effectively deadwood that the club are struggling to shift.


One of the first signings under Arteta but also one of the worst in the club’s history after a miserable campaign after joining from Chelsea on a free transfer.

Willian has returned to Corinthians where he began his career after ripping up his £20m contract.

  • Arsenal FC

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