I was shocked enough last week when I found out that Francis Coquelin’s Arsenal contract was set to expire this summer, which means that he is now free to discuss new deals with clubs outside the Premier League.
I seem to remember, back in the day, when a young Mathieu Flamini was inadvertently allowed to run his contract down and moved to AC Milan on a free transfer, that Arsene Wenger vowed that he would never allow this situation to happen ever again. He broke that vow in the Theo Walcott ‘sign dat ting’ saga, but thankfully that one turned out okay, but the exact same thing has happened with Coquelin. Why did he send him out on loan without a new contract?
Anyway, I digress. The latest news from the Telegraph and the Star is that the extremely promising Chuba Akpom is ALSO out of contract this summer, and it seems that he is being sounded out by teams such as Liverpool and Everton amongst others, and apparently already has been offered pre-contract deals by Borussia Dortmund, FC Twente and Feyenoord.
I can fully understand why Akpom would be looking at other options to gain first team action, as it is obvious that with Giroud, Welbeck, Sanogo (?), Alexis, Campbell and Walcott competing for places in the future he is unlikely to get a look in. What I CANNOT understand is why Wenger didn’t give both Coquelin AND Akpom an ultimatum last summer that they had to sign an extension or be sold out of hand. Even if we only got 1 million for each of them it would be better than giving them the chance to leave for free this coming summer.
Am I right or am I missing something?