Joel Campbell has joined Sporting Lisbon on a season-long loan deal which will come as a surprise to some Arsenal fans, but could it be part of a bigger picture?
The winger had impressed last season, and had appeared to have earned his place in the Gunners playing squad, but following the emergence of Alex Iwobi, the Costa Rican was limited to only three substitute outings in the league.
Campbell has now agreed to move to Sporting Lisbon for the season, but the deal comes within a week of their striker Islam Slimani reportedly handing in a transfer request.
Arsenal were linked with the Algerian back in June, but the rumours have slowed in recent months, while Alexandre Lacazette and others have appeared to be more strongly of interest to the club.
But following the forward’s supposed transfer request having been handed in, and with Joel Campbell seemingly having joined to replace the forward, It leads me to believe we may have had an ulterior motive in the deal.
Slimani scored a huge 27 goals in 33 Primeira Liga outings last season, and at 28 years-old, should be coming into his prime.
With Lacazette’s price-tag seemingly rising having scored five goals in his two Ligue 1 matches already this term, which appears to reduce the likelihood that Arsene Wenger will be able to striker a deal to bring the French forward in.
We have started the season with Alexis Sanchez filling the void up front, but he has not got himself on the scoresheet, and the tactics employed have not filled our side with confidence, nor has it returned us with a win from our opening two matches.
Could Slimani be the answer to our problems? Do you think he could challenge Giroud for a first-team role?