Gunners release five
By Paul Higham
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Arsenal have released five youngsters who are not in Arsene Wenger's plans.Arsenal have released five youngsters who are not in Arsene Wenger's plans, but the club have insisted that Jose Antonio Reyes will not be following them out of Highbury.
Iceland international Olafur-Ingi Skulason (pictured) has known for some time that he was likely to be released and he has now been told he can go.
Adam Birchall, Jordan Fowler, Danny Karbassiyoon and Frankie Simek are the four other youngsters leaving North London.
American Karbassiyoon came the closest to getting into the first team picture, scoring in the Carling Cup against Manchester City.
Six games on loan at Ipswich gave the 20-year-old some regular action but he was not able to force his way into Wenger's thinking.
Fellow American Simek also had loan spells, with QPR and Bournemouth, to help get some first team experience, but will now have to look for a new club.
Wales Under-21 striker Birchall could not even get into the reserve side, while Fowler's season ended early with a knee injury.
The five departures are the only ones scheduled and Gunners vice chairman David Dein has insisted that Reyes will not be following them out of Highbury.
Reyes had well-documented problems throughout the season, with homesickness affecting his form, and a move to Real Madrid was expected.
Despite all the talk of Real, Dein insists that Reyes is now settled again at Arsenal and will not be leaving.
"He's fine, absolutely fine and he won't be leaving," said Dein.
Meanwhile, Brazilian midfielder Gilberto Silva is due to sign a new deal with Arsenal once he returns from holiday.