Arsenal forward reveals manager let him down last term

Joel Campbell has claimed that Arsene Wenger did not use him enough last season, despite impressing for Arsenal.

The Costa Rican forward has spent a number of seasons out on loan from the club, but following an eye-catching loan deal with Olympiacos, followed by an equally impressive World Cup campaign in 2014, many believed he deserved his shot within our first-team.

He stayed with Arsenal for the following season, but after only 37 minutes of league football in the first half of the campaign, opted to leave on another loan to join Villareal until the end of the term.

Last season he stayed with the Gunners first-team, and was finally given a run of fixtures worth talking about, and he was receiving praise for impressing on a number of occasions, and seemed comfortable within our team.

Despite his performances, from March 2 he was only given less than 20 match minutes split over four substitute appearances in the league, while Alex Iwobi was fast-tracked into the starting XI.

The 24 year-old is now said to have made his own decision to leave on loan, and is happy to have joined Sporting this summer.

He said: ‘I feel good, I’m happy, it’s a new experience.

‘I think I deserved to play more after what I did last year, but now I have a new stage in my career.’

Campbell was one of our better performers last season, and although I’m extremely happy with Iwobi’s progression, the Costa Rican is right in his assessment that he deserved more.

Walcott was chosen ahead of him for game time while Joel sat on the bench, and the England international was in woeful form at the time.

Should we have convinced Campbell to stay this year? Is his Arsenal career now over?

Tags Arsenal Joel Campbell Sporting


  1. Tas says:

    Campbell is a great player but he just don’t fit the Arsenal way of play

    1. josh37 says:

      I disagree.. I think he’s a pretty average player with a massive work-rate and heart while rarely making a mistake which is why he’s gained so many fans.
      But we need goals and assists from the wings, but he really doesn’t chip in enough of either and has a fairly predictable, reserved game which is why he makes so few errors.
      And i know i’ll be thumbed down to oblivion here but there’s a reason he’s gone to the lower leagues when made available for loan… If he was half as good as people say he is why didn’t a bigger club or even a prem club jump at the opportunity to snap him up when he was available??

      1. Admin says:

        Sporting are the third most successful Portuguese football club, with 46 titles in Portuguese competitions and one international title, the 1963–64 European Cup Winners’ Cup. Domestically, they have won 18 Primeira Liga titles, 16 Portuguese Cups (Taça de Portugal), four Championships of Portugal (a record tied with Porto) and eight Portuguese SuperCup titles.
        They came second last year and won the Cup the year before after a 7 year drought. Why does that sound familiar….
        They have won their first three games this season (including beating Porto) and will be aiming for the title. They have drawn Real Madrid, Dortmund and Legia Warsaw in the Champions League Group so I think this willall be good experience for Joel….

        1. josh37 says:

          I’m not disputing the experience or history of sporting…
          But the Portuguese league isn’t the most competitive of leagues. Also Joel’s 24 now.

          1. NY_Gunner says:

            How old is Jack, Alex and Aaron?

          2. Liang says:

            Even with the injury record of Jack, when he is available for loan 22 clubs came in with offers, including some elite clubs like AC M and Roma.

            If we were to put OX, Wilshere and Ramsey on the transfer market each and ever one of them could be sold for 30+M, Campbell is worth around 10M. The difference in potential is obvious for everyone to see.

      2. Carbon-12 says:

        I like Campbell very much but I agree with you 100%. I am disappointed by his statement. The loan move is the right thing to do considering our current squad but his statement is rather unfortunate. I wish him well

  2. Krish says:

    campbell is a solid player, who can do his job but wont surprise and decide a game, so he’s not a big loss imo, i prefer a ramsey to campbell one RW, i like both of them but ramsey brings the same stability plus the surprise factor

    1. bran99 says:

      yes the surprise factor of cutting inside instead of sticking to the wing and doing the basics.. that will always surprise you

      1. NY_Gunner says:

        You must be referring Jack and Aaron, who always manage to try their best to occupy Ozil’s space when they play on the wing…Besides him having a better engine than all 3, he’s also better at dribbling past and taking on defenders, link up play and never avoids the defensive part of his game…

        1. bran99 says:

          Yes was referring to those Wenger spoilt brats.

    2. josh37 says:

      There was a great article (i forget where and CB’s’d looking for it now) on how dire our production was from whatever wing Sanchez wasn’t on last season.
      While I do like Ramsey on the wing, I think we need to put a real goal threat out there. Hopefully Theo or Perez will step up, playing that sort of secondary forward playing off Giroud’s shoulder with Sanchez preferring to gather the ball from deep.
      We were far too tame last season, but if Xhaka can make a habit of those scything, splitting passes from deep we could really use a bit of pace on the wings to get the most from it or at the very least keep defenses honest.
      Far out i hate the international break!!!!! GRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!!!!!! I want our midfield on show now :'(

  3. Fatboy Gooney says:

    It’s funny how Wenger actually phoned the scout who found Campbell and congratulated him on his find and then Wenger ends up neglecting the kid, when his performance was better than most… That is Strange!

    I voted for ?
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    1. G-Rude says:

      I’ve voted! This is the best site for banter between AOBs and AKBs!
      JustArsenal Rules!

      1. Fatboy Gooney says:

        Well done mate! ?
        All jokes aside, I really do hope that this Blog wins an award,
        Admin and everyone else involved deserves it for all the hard work put into this forum, which goes unnoticed.

  4. josh37 says:

    Campbell is over-rated…
    Yes there’s merits to his performances warranting a first-team place when the other options were out of form returning from injury. And he works hard and is a very likable player.. But truth be told he doesn’t really have the capabilities to be a starting winger or wide forward for us in the long run..
    Sanchez, Ox, Iwobi, Theo, Jeff, Ramsey, Perez. We have a lot of options on the wings, Campbell was never going to be anything more than a squad player this season.
    The popular thing was/is to hate on Theo and Ox, but Theo is a lot more dangerous and Ox’s power and directness has a higher ceiling.

  5. Wayne Barker says:

    so now because cambell has left he is suddenly overrated and was never good enough to play for Arsenal.

    Typical arenal fans

    1. josh37 says:

      Haha sorry man but I’ve never really rated him… Always thought a squad player at best with a big heart. I like him, but attacking wise, he’s pretty tame.
      He’ll be forgotten all too quickly when someone makes that RW their own.

    2. Krish says:

      me too.. i never rated him he was only solid because of his defensive display lets be honest theo is the one who on form is the best RW we have, one reason a lot of people hate on him is because they know he can do better, whereas from campbell one cant really expect much more he will get an occasional assist and goal not more and not less (this being the reason why a lot like him, hes a safety option)

      1. Fatboy Gooney says:

        @ Contradictive Krish.
        Hahaha ?
        quote ” I never rated him he was only ‘SOLID’ because of his defencive display”

        I rest my case

        1. josh37 says:

          Not the strongest of cases… Defense really isn’t the biggest priority for a winger/inside forward.

          1. Fatboy Gooney says:

            As per usual… My point flew way over your head Josh.

  6. Arsenal_Girl says:

    This article reminds me to get some soup when i go to Morrissons later

  7. Compton says:

    With Campbell and Sanchez in the same XI, we were pretty predictable. We can’t have two inverted wingers and a target man playing in the same team (Joel, Alexis and Giroud). This neutralizes the aerial threat as both the wingers would cut inside into the box than cross from the touchline. We can have one inverted winger (Alexis), the other guy must cross so that Giroud can utilize his strength. Joel is a hard working, solid player and yes, he can win matches on his own. He has done it many times for Costa Rica and once for Arsenal (1 goal and 1 assist vs Swansea away last season). We can have him as a backup but it seems he wants more game time. Good luck to him, he needs to be a more consistent and when he comes back, he can challenge for the RW spot. COYG!!

  8. Iceman10 says:

    I don’t think he’s complaining about not playing. He’s more complaining about who is playing before him. Yeah, Iwobi came in and was very effective. As well as Campbell did, we couldn’t argue about Iwobi staying in the XI. But this term we have Walcott starting, while Iwobi is playing for the kids again, and Campbell is loaned out. That’s probably why he’s so upset.

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