Arsenal are expected to do more transfer business this summer after a number of successful additions – but the reported form of one Gunners player out on loan could affect Mikel Arteta’s plans.
Arsenal defender Nuno Tavares sealed a move away from the Emirates Stadium at the beginning of the season, joining Ligue 1 side Marseille for the entire 2022/23 campaign.
French outlet L’Equipe (via talkSPORT) recently claimed that Arteta and his staff were ‘often annoyed with his [Tavares’] behaviour’, and the Portuguese left-back struggled for form in the second half of last season.
But he started the current campaign strongly, and has netted six goals playing in a more attacking wing-back role.
Tavares was praised for his performances at that stage – but reports since suggest there may be an upcoming spanner in the works when it comes to the player’s future.
Tavares described as ‘seriously infuriating’
France-based football writer Matt Spiro took to Twitter on Monday to give an update on Tavares’ progress at OM – and despite a promising start, he has been seen to struggle in recent weeks.
He explained: “Nuno Tavares driving Marseille fans nuts at moment. Going through one of those periods where he can’t put one foot in front of the other.
“Stray passes, woeful decision-making, lazy defending… He’s quick, powerful, more or less two-footed… but a seriously infuriating player!”
Spiro did, however, counter that with Tavares’ excellent form in the first half of the season, and added that there is ‘a good player in there’.
Speaking to RMC Sport (via Daily Mirror) shortly after his move to OM, Tavares claimed that he and his agents wanted Arsenal to include a buy option in his loan to Marseille. However, the club elected not to.
Regardless, his form earlier in the season may have convinced Marseille to splash out a transfer fee to acquire him permanently.
Another option remains for Tavares to return to Arsenal and play a part in the first team next season, although The Sun claimed last month that he ‘will probably be sold this summer’.
But an apparent loss of form may make it more difficult for the Gunners to sell the left-back, if that is the avenue they decide to go down, which may in turn affect the potential funds at Arteta’s disposal to bring in new players.
Tavares will now hope to regain his early season form and help Marseille seal an automatic Champions League qualification spot for next season before any decisions on his future are made.