Arsene Wenger has admitted in his pre-Emirate Cup press conference that club captain Thomas Vermaelen remains a possibility to depart the club this summer.
The Belgian lost his place 18 months ago in the side, and has failed to reclaim it, such has been the form of Laurent Koscielny and Per Mertesacker.
On Vermaelen’s situation, Wenger said: “Vermaelen is injured. It is a possibility that he goes.”
Manchester United and Barcelona have been credited with a strong interest in him in recent weeks, and Vermaelen is thought to be keen to head for the exit.
Niggling injuries have stymied his progression at the club where he was once seen as one of the key players in the side. He will remain sidelined for the festivities at the Emirates this weekend with a knee injury picked up during the World Cup.
Wenger is still known to be in the market for a defender, and with Calum Chambers touted as a possible backup centre-half, the club appears to be preparing itself for Vermaelen’s impending departure.