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Arsenal to give up on star Thierry Henry loved and Jurgen Klopp found 'interesting'

Arsenal reportedly consider Albert Sambi Lokonga surplus to requirements and could sell the midfielder this summer to help fund another big-spending transfer window. Lokonga will return to the Emirates Stadium after impressing during a loan spell at Luton – but could be headed for a permanent exit.

The Belgian was signed from Anderlecht to much fanfare in 2021. However, he has made only 25 Premier League appearances for Arsenal in the three years since and has spent the last 18 months on loan at Crystal Palace and then Luton.

According to London World, Lokonga held talks with sporting director Edu and it was decided that the parties should go their separate ways. There is likely to be plenty of interest in the 24-year-old, who impressed with Luton despite their relegation.

Jurgen Klopp was a notable admirer when Liverpool played the Hatters earlier in the season. The German described Lokonga as ‘interesting’

He said: “When you see him playing and you think, oh…He’s an Arsenal player and they loaned him? Interesting.”

Reports at the time of Lokonga’s arrival suggested that then-Belgium coach Thierry Henry persuaded the player to join Arsenal. Lokonga later confirmed that to be the case.

He told Arsenal.com shortly after arriving in London of the Gunners icon’s input: “Not before I joined because I was with him for only two days and then I left the camp with the national team.

“He gave me some advice about Arsenal, the way the people are, the mentality I need to have. Some little things like that.”

Lokonga was a hit at Luton, although seems unlikely to rejoin the club after their return to the Championship. Premier League and European clubs will line up for the one-cap Belgium international.

“The love I have received has been amazing, it’s been unbelievable and I’ve never seen this kind of support,” Lokonga told BBC Three Counties Radio of his spell with Luton.

He then appeared to confirm his impending exit from Arsenal, saying: “For me, I had a discussion with Arsenal and the conclusion was the best thing for me was to leave the club.

“Now it’s up to my agent and the club to find something. I still have a contract there, one year plus a one-year option so let’s see what happens.”

Arsenal are expected to enjoy a busy summer transfer window, although the size of their budget may depend on shifting fringe players.


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