One of Arsenal's most vexing problems the past few seasons has been an embarrassing stockpile of not-quite-good-enough players.
On the one hand, there is a steady stream of young, as yet unformed talent coming out of the academy.
On the other, there are the notorious signings that didn't quite work out. The fact that they tend to be on inflated wages and have lacked game time has made a clear-out difficult.
Loan deals can be a handy solution in both cases.
A good example last year was Andrey Arshavin's loan back to his old club, Zenit St. Petersburg, where he regained form and confidence.
And though Arshavin struggled to bring either back from Russia, Arsenal will hope last year's loan success will facilitate a transfer this January.
Here are five players that manager Arsène Wenger may want to send out on loan this January.
The Moroccan international tops the list of signigs that just haven't quite worked out.
In fact, that's a bit of an understatement. Chamakh has been a disaster.
Quite apart from the fact that Chamakh has contributed so little at Arsenal, the deeper problem is that his disappointing spell there has devalued the striker to such an extent that it is proving difficult to get rid of him.
If Arsenal can't sell Chamakh in January, hopefully they can pull off a loan deal that will offer him the chance to regain form and, with any luck, make the man once seen as such a promising talent marketable again.
While Wenger may be tempted to keep versatile defender Martin Angha for cover in case of the kind of injury spates the Arsenal defence has suffered in recent seasons, the 18-year-old could benefit immensely from a loan spell.
Angha was handed his first senior appearance in Arsenal's 6-1 mauling of Coventry City in the League Cup in September.
It was a blameless, if occasionally nervous looking performance that suggested the Swiss Under-19 international needs more higher-level experience.
One of several promising academy midfielders, 19-year-old Chuks Aneke is an obvious loan candidate.
Aneke has already completed short-term loans at Stevenage and Preston North End, and is currently on a one-month loan at Crewe Alexandra.
Wenger will want to give the player, whom he has likened to Yaya Touré, longer-term loan experience come January.
Bitter experience during the Almunia years has taught Arsenal that the more goalkeeping talent at your disposal, the better.
19-year-old reserve keeper Damian Martinez, who made his senior debut against Coventry in the League Cup, has the talent to eventually target the No. 1 shirt.
A January loan spell will help build the experience to edge the Argentinian closer to the Gunners' first team squad.
Last December, Wenger sent Emmanuel Frimpong on loan to Wolves after a start to the season that saw the Ghanaian midfielder getting first-team chances.
Unfortunately, a cruciate ligament tear ended his involvement early in the loan.
Now recovering with the reserves, it seems likely that another loan deal will be put in place for January.
With competition in central midfield tight—particularly with Jack Wilshere's return—a loan spell will be essential for Frimpong to get regular league starts.