Unai Emery has suggested Arsenal‘s transfer dealings for the summer are complete as he prepares for his first season in charge at the Emirates Stadium.
The Gunners have been busy in recruiting the players identified by Emery, as well as head of football relations Raul Sanllehi and head of recruitment Sven Mislintat.
France Under-20 international Matteo Guendouzi is the latest acquisition following moves for Stephan Lichtsteiner, Bernd Leno, Sokratis Papastathopoulos and Lucas Torreira.
While the club continue to be linked with a new winger, Emery believes Arsenal’s transfer business may already be concluded
“Normally, in my career the big clubs don’t close the (door) or the moment to sign a new player,” he said.
“Today, we are okay. Maybe we can bring in one if there’s a very good possibility for them to help us, but the club has done a great job of signing new players and I am happy.
“We signed the players who we needed and only if one player is a big opportunity for us will we sign them. We will only sign a player in the next month if he’s a big opportunity.”
Emery also revealed he intends on naming a quintet of captains, with current skipper Laurent Koscielny set to keep the armband even though he is set to miss the start of the season with an Achilles injury.
Who will lead the Gunners on the pitch is just one of many questions Emery faced as he met the media at the club’s training ground on Thursday afternoon.
Emery, 46, was appointed as head coach following Arsene Wenger’s departure at the end of last season and – while he admits he needs to get to know his players better – he wants to have a host of players ready to step in as captain.
“We’ve spoken about that,” he said.
“My idea is to know every player and to know, also, the personality of the players. And then, I think my first idea is to have five captains in the team. But at the moment, I don’t know the names.
“I need to know more and also, firstly, Koscielny is the first captain now and for me, I have respect for that. Then, we are looking at, looking for, who are the players whose personality is the best in the dressing room.
“We want to keep the respect for these players and to find the captain and choose very well the best player for that.
“The first two weeks for us is to start knowing the club, knowing the players, knowing all the people who are working with us.”
Emery won the domestic treble at Paris Saint-Germain last season and believes he does not feel he needs to pick the brains of Wenger to find out more about his squad.
“Each coach needs to know the players,” he added.
“Not all the coaches have the same relationship with a player and I have my personality. I want to know with my direct opinion, with my direct conversations with the player.
“I have information on the players for the club, from the people around me. The information with Arsene is also important for me but the best is my direct relationship and conversations with the players.”
The club are yet to make an official announcement, and it is thought they are waiting until they can confirm Maurizio Sarri as Conte’s replacement, along with the signing of Napoli midfielder Jorginho.
Conte won the 2016-17 Premier League title in his first season with Chelsea after installing his revolutionary 3-5-2 formation.
However, things began to unravel last season as a poor transfer window saw the relationship between club and manager strained, and their title defence never quite got going.
Though he won the FA Cup in May, his fate seemed to have been sealed long before then as his exacting style began to frustrate both his players and the club hierarchy.
However, his departure has been delayed by Chelsea’s struggles to name a replacement, as Napoli have played hardball over Sarri, demanding that the Blues pay the £7million buyout that is part of the Italian’s contract with the Serie A club.
Conte was still in place as Chelsea’s pre-season began this week, and he took charge of the initial training sessions.
Cesc Fabregas ‘liked’ a message welcoming Conte’s departure on Twitter, later apologising and suggesting he had pressed the button in error.
He then wrote on Twitter: “Thank you Mister for another Premier League title and FA Cup. It wasn’t easy for me to convince you in the beginning but in the end I hope I did you proud! Good luck for the future.”
The Algeria forward completed a club-record £60million switch to the Etihad Stadium earlier this week.
City set a host of records as they powered to Premier League title glory last season and transferring that success to the European stage is now one of the club’s next aims.
Speaking at his formal unveiling at the City Football Academy, Mahrez said: “It’s a club who wants to win this type of trophy. The Champions League is for big clubs and Manchester City are a big club.
“They have everything to try to win the Champions League. It is a goal. Last season they lost in the quarter-final and I know they have the ambition to go further the next season.
“That’s why I’m here, why I made the decision to come here, because I want to be part of this.”
Mahrez, 27, temporarily stopped training with Leicester after a move from the Foxes to City failed to materialise in January.
City had enquired about the 2016 PFA player of year in the closing days of the transfer window but refused to meet Leicester’s asking price.
Mahrez was keen to steer discussion away from that issue as he took questions from media.
He said: “They (City) offered and Leicester rejected the offers, but it’s the past. Now I’m here now and I’m happy. This is the past and we are looking forward now.
“The most important thing is I’m here. I’m starting a new challenge and a new life. It’s a good thing.”
Mahrez did thank City for reigniting their interest in him this summer.
He said: “That means a lot for me. I’m very happy and will give my best to this club.”
The final fee represents a considerable reduction on the £95million Leicester were reportedly asking for in January but it is still a sizeable outlay, eclipsing the £57million City paid for Aymeric Laporte last season.
Mahrez said: “The prices have been very big in every country so it doesn’t affect me.”
Mahrez has been in demand since Leicester’s run to Premier League glory in 2015-16 but he hopes the move has come at the right time in his career.
Asked if he should have left the King Power Stadium sooner, he said: “Maybe, but it is the destiny. It happened like this. If I’d moved sooner maybe I wouldn’t have been happy, I don’t know.”
Mahrez is now looking forward to working with manager Pep Guardiola and the rest of the squad, who won the title with a record 100 points and 106 goals.
He said: “He’s a big manager, he’s won a lot of things, made history with this club. I wanted to work under him and to play in this club. I didn’t hesitate at all.
“What they did was amazing work. They broke all the records in the Premier League, which is unbelievable. I’m very confident about myself and I hope to help this team to improve.”