Arsenal set to lose money on midfielder after agreeing Sevilla loan

  • Albert Sambi Lokonga is heading to Sevilla on loan
  • Two clubs negotiating buy clause at end of loan
  • Sevilla hoping to negotiate £8m permanent fee - Arsenal signed midfielder for £18m three years ago
Albert Sambi Lokonga is heading to Sevilla on loan
Albert Sambi Lokonga is heading to Sevilla on loan / Richard Pelham/GettyImages

Arsenal are set to lose a big chunk of money on Albert Sambi Lokonga, just three years after the club signed him from Anderlecht for £18m.

Lokonga is heading to Sevilla on loan for the 2024/25 season having impressed at Luton Town last term.

The Belgian arrived at the Emirates as a relatively unknown 21-year-old in 2021 having broken through at Anderlecht. The club knew they weren't signing the finished article, but they backed Mikel Arteta to make it work.

""We’re confident Albert’s ready for the next stage in his development and we’re looking forward to welcoming a new member to our squad with his quality and presence.”"

Arteta after Lokonga signed in 2021

But while Lokonga showed promise, the Belgian never looked comfortable at the highest level. He remains a fine passer and is generally a classy operator in possession, but his positional flaws rendered him surplus to requirements for a side with lofty ambitions.

Albert Sambi Lokonga set to join Sevilla on loan with view to make deal permanent

Lokonga was primarily used as an alternative to Thomas Partey at the base of Arsenal's midfield, but it quickly became clear that the Belgian was no #6. The midfielder had success under Rob Edwards in a physical Luton side last season while operating more as an #8, and there's no doubt Lokonga, now 24, has considerable talent.

A technically proficient Sevilla side clearly value his ability in possession, and Lokonga should have success in the more serene environment that is La Liga.

Fabrizio Romano reports that the club have given the 'green light' to the 24-year-old's sale this summer, with the player accepting an offer from the Spanish club. The two clubs are now negotiating the permanent buy clause in Lokonga's loan. There were talks of an initial option to buy, but the clause could be made mandatory.

Arsenal are holding out for a £10m fee, but Sevilla don't want to go any higher than £8m. Either way, the Gunners are set to lose a considerable chunk of cash on Lokonga. While we can accept that the midfielder may no longer have a future in north London, to garner such a minute fee for a player of Lokonga's talent would further depict just how poor Arsenal are at selling their assets. Sevilla are getting a steal at £10m, let alone £8m.