Arsenal announce release of four players following end of contracts
Arsenal have released four players on a free transfer following the conclusion of their deals at the club, which include Yaya Sanogo, Stefan O’Connor, Kristopher da Graca and Kostas Pileas. None of the players were deemed an important part of the Gunners’ campaign and will now be able to search for a different club where they can play on a regular basis.
Sanogo made 20 competitive appearances for the club, which included a brilliant cameo in the 2013/14 FA Cup final where his contribution led to Aaron Ramsey’s winner in extra time. He has been in and out of the squad at Arsenal, while going out on multiple loan spells following his arrival from Auxerre in 2013.
Crystal Palace was Sanogo’s first loan club for the final six months during the 2014/15 season. He was then loaned out to Ajax at the start of the following season, but returned midway after failing to impress, and secured a loan to Charlton Athletic for the remainder of the campaign where he suffered a major injury and was ruled out indefinitely.
Defender O’Connor was the only other player to have secured at least one senior outing with the club – against Galatasaray in the Champions League in 2014. However, both DaGraca and Pileas represented the under-23s last season but could never take the next step up.
Meanwhile, the Gunners are well on their way to promote a few youth players to the first team next season, with Arsene Wenger confirming that Reiss Nelson and AinsleyMaitland-Niles will be given a chance to prove their worth next season. The north London club have been noted for their policy to encourage youth, with Hector Bellerin, Francis Coquelin, Jack Wilshere among others making the grade from the youth system.
The Gunners have already completed the transfer of Sead Kolasinac from FC Schalke and are looking to add a few more players to the squad to challenge for the title next season. Also, there has been no update on the transfer situation of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil, whose deals expire next year.