Arsenal are prepared to let academy striker Folarin Balogun leave the club on loan in January in search of senior football.
The 20-year-old, who penned a new contract back in April, has been tearing up the Premier League 2 all season, bagging 14 goals in ten games, but he has not even made Mikel Arteta’s senior squad since the second game of the season.
Balogun recently confessed that he wanted to test himself at a higher level soon, and David Ornstein of The Athletic states that the decision has been made to send the striker away on loan once the January transfer window opens.
Arsenal have incredibly high hopes for Balogun and accept that he has outgrown the PL2, and they are now fielding countless offers from teams across Europe keen to give him his first real taste of senior football.
No decision on which club he joins has been made, with Arsenal keen to evaluate all their options and select the best one for Balogun.
The only complication for Arsenal is the short-term futures of the rest of Arsenal’s strikers. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will depart for the African Cup of Nations soon, while Eddie Nketiah is keen to be sold before he walks away for free in the summer.
Losing all three would leave just Alexandre Lacazette, but even he is facing an unsure future as the Frenchman is also approaching the final six months of his contract. Lacazette recently revealed that his agents are already exploring all his options for the January transfer window.
Lacazette and Nketiah could both be sold, and with Aubameyang set to be absent for a few weeks, Arteta may choose to keep Balogun around as cover for the senior side.
Arsenal remain keen to send Balogun out on loan, but that will rest on whether Arteta believes his squad can survive without the 20-year-old for the second half of the season.