Albert Sambi Lokonga has returned to first team training with Arsenal.
Reporter Jeorge Bird has stated that Albert Sambi Lokonga, along with Folarin Balogun, is back in training with the Arsenal first team.
There has been plenty of speculation about Lokonga’s future this summer. The player spent the second half of last season on loan with Crystal Palace, having fallen down the pecking order at the Emirates Stadium.
The midfielder certainly seems unsettled at the north London club, having earlier this summer said that he would be open to a move in order to ensure regular game time. He is unlikely to get regular football with Arsenal this season should he stay at the club, as he no longer seems to be a part of Mikel Arteta’s plans.
Lokonga has been heavily linked with a switch to Burnley, where he could reunite with Vincent Kompany, who he worked with during his time at Anderlecht.
However, Lokonga’s presence in training does raise question marks about his future. He hasn’t been sent to train alone or with the reserves, as he might if his exit were guaranteed. This will also give him the opportunity to impress Arteta, and perhaps change the Spanish coach’s opinion of him.
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What next for Albert Sambi Lokonga?
The most likely outcome, though, is still that Lokonga leaves Arsenal in this transfer window. The Gunners need to sell where they can to help offset a summer of heavy spending, which has seen Declan Rice, Kai Havertz, Jurrien Timber, and David Raya join the club, and make room for potential further arrivals.
Arsenal spent around £17.2 million to sign Lokonga in 2021, and will now be hoping to attract a decent fee for the 23-year-old Belgium international.
In any case, Arsenal fans and Arteta will want the matter of Lokonga’s future wrapped up as quickly as possible.