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Mikel Arteta has refused to rule out the possibility of Lucas Torreira returning to Arsenal early from his loan spell with Atletico Madrid.
The Uruguay international joined Atletico on loan on deadline day and immediately impressed Diego Simeone with his work rate during his debut against Celta Vigo in October.
But Torreira was sidelined in November after testing positive for coronavirus and has struggled to get in the team since returning to fitness.
The midfielder has played just 14 minutes across four games this month and was left on the bench during Atletico’s 2-0 defeat to Real Madrid on Saturday.
Reports in Italy have now linked Torreira with a move back to Arsenal but are claiming that Torino are keen on signing him having considered a move in the summer window.
‘Edu has been dealing with that situation, but again, when the market opens and we have the possibility to bring players in and get players out, whatever we have to do, we will discuss it,’ said Arteta.
Asked directly if that meant Torreira is heading back to Arsenal in January, Arteta replied: ‘I cannot comment on that at the moment.’
Arteta also insists that Arsenal’s hierarchy were well aware that the team could go through a poor run of results this season.
‘Before you look to the future, you have to look to the past and the things that have happened, how you’re going to move forward, the things that are working, that things that have to be changed.
‘We all knew the bumps were coming.
‘I think I said many times in this room, it’s how we deal with them, how strong we are to get through them and sometimes when things get ugly it’s necessary to get brighter and better.
‘Nobody likes to be in the situation that we’re in in the Premier League and it’s not good enough and it’s not acceptable.
‘It’s not a quick fix but that does not mean that we’re accepting the situation, it’s the contrary.’