Arsene Wenger has often been criticised for his approach to the summer transfer window. However, he’s now made key deadline day signings for his team for two years in a row.
Wenger was under immense pressure to sign a striker at the back end of the window after an injury to Olivier Giroud left the Arsenal attacking cupboard looking a little bit bare.
However, he’s hinted that he knew from very early on that a deal for Welbeck would be possible, as he headed off to Rome for a rather unique and personal meeting with the Pope.
“The moment they bought Falcao they had to let somebody go and I was not aware at the start when I heard that he could be available. It was quick because it was on the last day of the transfer window and I had no hesitation to do it,” Wenger is quoted by the Mirror.
“At the start, the player (Welbeck) was only available on loan, but after he became available to buy, I agreed.”
“The advantage of that day was I had to get up at 6 in the morning and I was available the whole day.”
It’s significant considering the amount of back and forth negotiations, which happen in modern transfers and the fact that Arsenal’s deal for Welbeck seemingly change twice on the last day of the transfer window.
It also suggests that the stick Wenger received for leaving the country while his side still didn’t have an additional striker, was unwarranted as he had his finger on the pulse of the situation throughout the day.
Welbeck should make his Arsenal debut against Manchester City tomorrow and Wenger’s comments suggest he was true to his word when he said before deadline day, that he would be active throughout the entire day.
Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal has since said that Welbeck was allowed to leave United because he’d done nothing to justify being ahead of Wayne Rooney, Robin Van Persie or Radamel Falcao in the pecking order.
At Arsenal he should get a run of games up front and in Arsene Wenger, he has a boss who is well suited to taking attacking players, who are under developed and with a point to prove, and turning them into extremely important stars for his first team.