Lucas Perez looks almost certain to join the four players Arsenal released on Friday (9 June) after struggling for game time since joining from Deportivo La Coruna last summer.

The Gunners released Yaya Sanogo from the first-team and three players from the academy - Stefan O'Connor, Kristopher da Graca and Kostas Pileas – when they revealed their end of season retained and released list. The quartet will leave the club when their contract expires on 30 June.

Arsene Wenger had already indicated that he will trim his first-team squad to make room for additions going into next season, and Perez looks likely to be another casualty after the player's agent confirmed their interest in finding a new club.

The Spanish forward joined Arsenal last summer in a £17m ($21.6m) move from Deportivo, and despite impressing every time he was on the pitch, opportunities with the first-team were far and few in-between. He also struggled with minor injury problems throughout the course of the season, which aided in his lack of opportunities.

Perez made 11 appearances in the Premier League during his debut season, but only two were from the start as Arsene Wenger preferred to use him mainly in the cup competitions. He initially stated that he wishes to remain at the club and fight for his place, but his lack of inclusion in the matchday squad in the latter stages of the season has changed his mind and is now inclined to move to pastures new.

The 28-year-old's former club Deportivo have confirmed their interest in re-signing the striker, while Premier League outfits Everton and West Ham United are also reportedly monitoring the situation. There have been talks about a potential loan move, but Spanish radio station El Partidazo de COPE report that Arsenal are keen on a permanent deal and are willing to accept a loss and allow him to leave for a fee of around €14m (£12.2m).

Arsenal, meanwhile, are sweating over the future of young academy prospect Chris Willock, who will be out of contract on 30 June. The Gunners are not keen to allow him to leave and have offered him a new deal to extend his stay with the club.

According to the Sun, the 19-year-old attacker, who made his Arsenal first-team debut this season, is yet to accept an offer of an extension, which has alerted Premier League rivals Manchester City, who are said to be keen to take him to the Etihad Stadium.

Wenger rates the forward and has spoken highly about him in the past. Should Willock leave the club on a free transfer, Arsenal will be entitled to a compensation for his development thus far. The England Under-19 international has two siblings – Matty Willock, who plays for Manchester United and Joe Willock, who is part of the Arsenal Under-18 set up.

Lucas Perez
Lucas Perez could leave Arsenal after just one season with a return to the La Liga touted for the striker Getty