Arsenal are set to kick off pre-season training with questions over the future of captain Cesc Fabregas and contract rebel Samir Nasri still unanswered, while full-back Gael Clichy is on the verge of a £7million move to Manchester City.
Gunners boss Arsene Wenger has been linked with a string of new acquisitions as he looks to rebuild a squad which again failed to last the distance.
However, Bolton manager Owen Coyle today maintained there had been "nothing concrete" in Arsenal's reported interest over £17m-rated England centre-back Gary Cahill and as yet there has been no confirmation of a an £11m deal for Ivory Coast forward Gervinho being signed and sealed.
While both Fabregas and Nasri are set to begin their work in the London Colney gym before the whole group gets together in preparation for Sunday's departure on a short Far East tour, just who will be on the plane remains to be seen.
Clichy, who had been the only surviving member of Wenger's Invincibles squad from their last Premier League championship squad, is in Manchester and expected to soon agree personal terms as Arsenal cash in now rather than allowing the 25-year-old France international to leave on a free transfer at the end of next season.
Nasri is another player who has yet to commit his long-term future to the Gunners - and hardly pledged his allegiance to the badge in an interview at the weekend, claiming his motivation was winning titles rather than just an inflated wage packet.
Fabregas, meanwhile, seems set to return to his boyhood club Barcelona, although as yet there has been no agreement on price, with the European champions expected to push through an improved £30m-plus package before Arsenal head off to Malaysia, where the London club would look to utilise their skipper's presence on a much-needed commercial drive.
While Wenger may well be playing his own game of poker in the transfer market, with so far young defender Carl Jenkinson the only confirmed new arrival, many of his reported transfer targets head elsewhere.
Bosnian centre-back Emir Spahic is to join Sevilla from Montpellier, while Argentina youngster Ricky Alvarez is said to have spurned Arsenal for Inter Milan.
France midfielder Mathieu Valbuena has also been linked with a move to Emirates Stadium.
However, Marseille coach Didier Deschamps was another rival manager to insist the Gunners had not made any formal approach, telling La Provence newspaper: "Mathieu has developed into a full international here and is a player with a lot of quality. However, I have been here for two years now and we have not received a single concrete offer.
"If an interesting offer comes in, we will certainly consider it, but this is not the case as of now."Reuse content