Joel Campbell wants to quit Arsenal at the end of the season and hopes to make his loan to Real Betis permanent. The Costa Rica player who plays as a winger but can also operate as a forward was signed by Wenger back in 2011.
Campbell is into his eighth year as a Gunner but has spent six of those eight years out on loan. He has only made 40 appearances for Arsenal over the entire period and scored four goals creating another six. He had to wait till the 2014 FA Cup to actually make his Arsenal debut and the winger now wants out.
This is his second loan at Betis and he clearly enjoys Spain more. He got to play 28 La Liga games for the club back during his first loan spell in the 2012/13 season and will hope to better that this season with the World Cup coming up next year.
He made no secret of his desire to leave Arsenal by saying that he hopes to impress his bosses at Betis so that they would gamble on him next year and make the move permanent. Campbell will be free to negotiate a pre-contract come January.
As for Wenger, it is now a tricky situation. As the Alexis Sanchez saga seems to have no end, Wenger will soon need replacements in his squad. If Mesut Ozil who operates on the other wing in Wenger’s 3-4-3 were also to leave on a free transfer that would leave the Frenchman desperately short on wingers. Having already lost Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain his only recognized wingers are Theo Walcott and Alex Iwobi if Sanchez and Ozil leave.
In a heavily inflated market, it would prove impossible for the cost-cribbing Frenchman to get two direct replacements and he would then rue losing out on Campbell, a good squad player.
As for Campbell himself, he would have to cut down on game time should he return to The Emirates, something he would not be keen on doing.
But again, if Wenger is able to sell Sanchez for a decent price in January and keep Ozil in the club, Campbell would be redundant to him. He would be stuck with a player on a wage without any reason.
It would be a tricky gamble for Wenger to take but with Sanchez looking extremely likely to head for the exit door, Wenger should play it safe and offer Campbell a way back into the club, at least till he can find another suitable replacement.