Tag Archives: joel campbell

Goodbye Joel Campbell

7 years after joining the club, and 5 years after obtaining a work permit enabling him to play in England, Joel Campbell is finally set to leave the club.

The Costa Rican international is set to join Italian side Frosinone Calcio on a 3-year-deal.

Campbell has always divided fans – something which I have never understood.

On one side you have the fans who would defend him, say how talented he was, that he was never given a chance by Arsene Wenger and was essentially ruined. It was agenda driven.

The other side – the majority of Arsenal fans – saw a player who was not really good enough to wear the shirt, and regards of their position on the manager, felt he probably should have been sold in 2014 after a couple of decent World Cup games.

The reality is, those that “rated” him, and still do, only do that to attack Wenger, not because they think he is any good.

Even over the summer, I have people claiming that he had a lot of potential and was still good enough for Arsenal.

Campbell is now 26, so we really should stop talking about him like he is a bright young talent. In 40 appearances for Arsenal, he scored just 4 goals. So those saying he “always impressed for Arsenal” are clearly seeing him through biased glasses.

On loan at Villarreal, Sporting and Betis, he also struggled to break through into the first team.

In the 3 seasons he spent on loan, he started just 25 league games. If he was not good enough for those teams, he is certainly not good enough for The Arsenal.

As I said, the support of him by some fans will always baffle me. It seems they rated him purely because the old manager did not. And at the same time they called Theo Walcott “dead wood”.

Campbell follows Chuba Akpom, Lucas Perez & Jeff Reine-Adélaïde out of the club, continuing the process of removing those players who are simply not good enough from the squad.

Still plenty to go…


Arsenal set to sell 5 this week

At the time of writing, Arsenal have made money on just a single player. Jeff Reine-Adélaïde joining Angers in France for just £1million. That is against ~£67,400,000 spent on 5 senior professionals.

With a little over a week until the transfer window shuts, this will be the week that Arsenal start shipping out players that are no longer required.

The first out of the door will likely be Chuba Akpom. A deal in the region of £2,000,000 has been agreed with PAOK in Greece. Expect this one to be done within 24 hours 9it might even be completed before I hit “publish”).

Talk is also starting to increase about Lucas Perez. Early indications were that Unai Emery was going to give him a second chance, however he failed to impress during the pre-season tour in Singapore and has been interesting Lazio.

With Emile Smith Rowe and Reiss Nelson looking good in pre-season, Emery seems to have decided to give them more chances in the first team squad at the sacrifice of 29-year-old Perez.

The development of Smith Rowe, Nelson and a good showing from Eddie Nketiah could also mean the end for Danny Welbeck.

Arsenal set to sell 5 this week

With a year left on his contract, Welbeck is unlikely to sign a new deal with the club considering the array of young attacking talent we have come through. This leaves Emery with a decision.

Take a risk and sell Welbeck, promoting Nketiah to 3rd choice striker. Or keep Welbeck for one more year, giving 19-year-old Nketiah another year to develop.

My money is on Welbeck staying for another year, with his younger teammate getting a loan deal to a top end Championship club. Welbeck will then be allowed to leave on a free transfer in 2019, with the club knowing his replacement is also costing nothing.

Everything could change however if Arsenal were to end up with a bid northwards of £20,000,000.

Reports in Turkey are that David Ospina will finally join Besiktas.

He has been linked with a move to Turkey every since his second season with Arsenal; and it seems this year will be when it finally happens, with Arsenal having signed German keeper Bernd Leno and Petr Cech having done a full pre-season.

Some outlets are reporting it is a loan deal, others a permanent deal. £2,000,000 the mooted feed.

Joel Campbell was omitted from Unai Emery’s first team squad for the pre-season tour of Singapore. It is clear that his future lies away from North London, and the likelihood if he was told last week that he was to stay at home to find a new club.

The only problem is who would actually want him?

Now 26-years-old, he has done nothing with Arsenal and not much more with 6 loan spells at 5 different clubs throughout Europe. Another side would be reluctant to offer him the £30,000 he is currently on at Arsenal, and he would surely not take a permanent transfer elsewhere for less money with a year left on his contract.

It would not surprise me if Arsenal let him join another side on a free transfer.

Welbeck aside, we are unlikely to get much from selling Akpom, Perez, Ospina and Campbell, but the quartet take up nearly £7,000,000 a year in annual salary.

If Arsenal do thin the squad out by selling on the fringe players, expect them to explore bringing in one more at the beginning of next week before the transfer window slams shut.


3 loanees compete for second chance at Arsenal

Lucas Perez

There has already been plenty of talk that Unai Emery fancies a bit of Lucas Perez.

The squad that finished the season last year was one attacker short. A wide man. We need someone to fill the talent gap between Alex Iwobi and Henrik Mkhitaryan. We need a winger who is also comfortable inside.

A budget solution will be Lucas Perez returning to the squad.

The 30-year-old Spaniard joined Arsenal in 2016 for £17.1 million from Deportivo, but struggled for game time.

7 goals in 21 games was not the worst, but 5 of those goals came in two games – against Nottingham Forest and FC Basel.

Last year, he was shipped back to Deportivo where he struggled to find the form that led to his big transfer to Arsenal.

His struggles back in Spain have been well document, with Deportivo writing “Get out of our club” on his former house in the Spanish city.

Despite struggling, he still contributed 8 goals and 6 assists in La Liga last season.

I would not be entirely happy if he returned, but we should not sell him until we get in that extra attacker.

Joel Campbell

Despite being told many years ago to “get out whilst you can Joel”, the Costa Rican forward is some how still on the books at Arsenal.

He created a lot of debate whilst at the club, with many claiming he should have got more game time.

Having struggled to get a work permit after agreeing to join the club in 2011, Campbell played 40 games in the two seasons he was part of the first team squad – scoring just 4 goals.

Since then, he has struggled on loan deals in Spain (for Villarreal & Real Betis) and Portugal (for sporting) – perhaps showing that he does not quite have it for the top level.

At all 3 clubs, he struggled to become a first team regular, scoring just 6 goals in 59 games. His career is pretty much 1 in 10.

For the same reason as we might keep hold of Lucas Perez, Joel Campbell might get a second life at Arsenal if we do not recruit the forward that we need.

It would take Arsenal to not sign anyone, and cash in on Lucas Perez, but there is an outside chance that he might still be at Arsenal when the transfer window shuts in early August.

No longer a youngster – he recently turned 25 – Campbell played 90 minutes against Switzerland (his first start of this World Cup). He looked quite impressive. Assisted the first goal and won the penalty for the second.

There is confusion as to whether his contract runs out in 2018 or 2019.

If it is 2018, today will be the last day he is at arsenal making these 281 word pointless.

Jeff Reine-Adélaïde

It is 3 summers since Frenchman Jeff Reine-Adelaide had an impressive pre season that got a lot of Arsenal fans exicted. He has since shown how hard it is to go from talented teenager to established senior pro.

Now 20, he spent the second half of last season on loan to Angers in the French Ligue 1, where he failed to score or assist in 443 minutes of football; his light being a man of the Match performance against Bordeaux.

In 2017 he looked on the verge of breaking into the first team squad, but an injury in January ruled him out for nearly 12 months.

Arsenal might decide that rather than spend big on a talented youngster to provide the width and competition, to give one of their own a chance.

Personally, I would like us to still sign someone between Iwobi and Mkhitaryan (Jeff is not as good as Iwobi) and then keep Jeff in the squad for the Europa League – at 20-years-old he does not take up a first team squad place.