Arsenal letting Willock go to Benfica OK as long as……

Let us be Gooners, not too many of us Arsenal fans even knew much about the young Gunner Chris Willock but it still feels a bit galling to see this talented youngster leave Arsenal and sign for another club, as reported by The Mirror.

He may never have played a single game in the English Premier League, but Willock was one of the young Gunners spoken about often as having a lot of potential. The fact that it is Benfica, one of the big hitters in Portugal, that he has given up on the Gunners to sign for says a lot.

Apparently the main reason behind this move by Willock, who joined the Arsenal youth system at the incredible age of five and whose younger brother Joe is still with us, was having a growing sense of frustration at his lack of playing opportunities.

I can understand that in a way, even though he did play two games in the EFL cup last season. The report claims that he will not be playing in the Benfica first team to begin with either but you have to assume that he will get more first team chances there soon and so it makes sense in the interests of his career and I for one wish him well.

The report does not say, however, if Arsenal have put any sort of clause into the transfer, such as a first refusal should Willock blossom and prove to be a bit a of a star. Surely we would have at least tried to do this after seeing Man United forced to break the world transfer record to sign one of their former academy players Paul Pogba back from Juventus.

Does anyone out there know if there is any clause involved in the Willock transfer? And if not, why not?



  1. Just thinking that a clause cannot exist as he has finished his contract and is simply leaving? There has been no sale.

    1. Well done mate ?
      And here’s your ” I’m wide awake & Paying attention” trophy ??

      Yup, Arsenal let his contract run down and he wasn’t offered a new one until the final weeks. He has been at the club since he was 5 years old. City and Dortmund were interested in him but he chose to join Benfica instead. Good luck to him.

  2. There isnt any news if a clause was negotiated but very likely. Barcelona are apparently ready to trigger Gerard Deolelfu clause to resign him. After the C Vela case, Im quiet sure Arsenal has a clause for both Gnabry and Willock.

    1. no i don’t think so – difference with deulofeu is that willock is out of contract – he is free to do as he see fit, and arsenal get nothing except a pittance for developing the player – i suppose much like fabregas and barca!!

    2. Barca already triggered clause, Friday was the last date for them to do so and they did. Arsenal are not Barca, we dont come in same weight category, and no one will buy from us if we insert release clause with 34 players on payroll, 9 to get rid of and 11 expiring contracts next year

  3. Gnabry? Very unlikely as we got to know, albeit too late, that the initial move to Weder Bremen was a smokescreen to prevent direct negotiation by Bayern, who may have had to pay more. A clause was inserted by his people, which clause was activated by Bayern to buy him. The point is, if we had a buy back clause, we would have moved in, instead of Bayern. To be honest, I don’t think we would rule selling Gnabry.

    As for Willock, that’s the player I worry about. Unfortunately, since he ran out his contract, his last club can have no say in his negotiations with a new side. He was a free agent. We can only count on his love for Arsenal to bring him back at some later date.

  4. As far as I’m aware but not 100% sure, it’s not possible to insert a clause when someone leaves out of contract. Once your contract is up you are free to go wherever you want and Arsenal have no rights over the player.

    1. If it were so, don’t we imagine Barca would have inserted one for Bulletin or Fabregas when they left as youngsters? I believe if a player has fond memories of his time at the a club but has to leave for practical reasons, like seeking better playing time, there’s always a chance he’ll be back if and when the situation permits,not always but it happens. Zizou contemplated returning to Olympique Marseille to end his playing career, wouldn’t be unheard of for cristiano to head back to Man. U before retiring, Pogba is another case in point, Fabregas would have been back if he wasn’t dishonest in the way he left. When a player feels the love from the fans and the club as a whole, it’s bigger than any buy back clause.

      1. Bellerin not Bulletin lol. Oh and I forgot about Suarez, I doubt we’d be surprised if he went back to Liverpool in a couple of years.

  5. There is no clause in regard to Willock transfer, purely because he move on a “FREE TRANSFER”. unlike Vela or even perhaps Gnarbry.

  6. Willock contract ran out on the 1st, Benfica signed him as an out of contract player.
    AFC tried to get Willock to sign a new deal but Willock wanted more than AFC was willing, Willock is a bit of a drama queen at times and that (from what I have read) is the reason he wasn’t given more chances in the 1st team.

    As we didn’t sell the player I find it hard to imagine we had any influence in there being clauses in the contract which favor us.

    1. Drama Queen? ?? he’s got to go some, before he catches you up mate!… Boi, your nickers are in a twist 24/7 ??

      When we see that most of our senior players Contract renewals got neglected, it comes as no surprise that Arsenal left it until the final weeks to try and convince Willock to renew. The kid wants more playing time and if City and Dortmund were after his signature then that speaks volumes of this youngsters potential.
      Good luck to him.

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