The Gunners boss had maintained he would not allow the versatile attacker to depart this summer especially with the long term injury to Olivier Giroud depleting Arsenal’s options up front.
Campbell has seemed to have grown frustrated at his lack of game time this season, managing just 16 minutes of Premier League action so far, and his party appeared to be pushing for a last gasp move away to Portugal in order to secure regular football.
It was thought much depended on whether the Gunners could sign a striker on Monday before the 11pm closure of the window. However the proposed transfer of Danny Welbeck took longer than expected due to Manchester United’s reluctance to sign off the deal, meanwhile the Portuguese window slammed shut leaving Campbell at Arsenal for the season ahead.
Campbell’s agent Joaquim Batica has struggled to understand Wenger’s reasoning for keeping the talented 22-year-old when he has so far seemed reluctant to play him, confirming that Benfica pushed hard for a move.
He is quoted as saying by O Jogo:
Benfica fought until the last minute to sign Campbell but the move didn’t happen because, in the last hour, Arsenal decided to keep him.
Wenger says he did not want to sell him. But if he is not in his plans, then why not allow him to leave?
Wenger obviously does see something in Campbell and he will play games for the Gunners this season. The Frenchman was right to stand his ground and keep the Costa Rican.
If the Arsenal boss had lost faith in Campbell he would have cashed in as with Ignasi Miquel who failed to make the grade in north London despite our lack of depth at the back. That said, there was a contrasting report that emerged yesterday that suggested the young forward was offered as a makeweight for Sporting Lisborn’s William Carvalho. But must take that with a pinch of salt.
Campbell is still adjusting to English football and will certainly be a part of the Cup matches in the early stages. If he can impress and build upon a promising pre-season then he does have a shot at some top level football especially with the Gunners fighting on all four fronts. There is a lot of competition in the squad however.
A wise decision from Wenger, one of the limited he made on deadline day (still fuming at the lack of depth at the back) but Campbell needs to step up and prove he is good enough for Arsenal football club.