Arsene Wenger has claimed that he “loves” Joel Campbell – but could not rule out a January loan move for the out-of-favour Arsenal striker.
The Costa Rican is reportedly frustrated over a lack of playing time in his maiden season with the first team and speculation is rife that he could be set for a winter exit.
Although Wenger insists that the 22-year-old – who has played just 108 minutes in all competitions this season – does feature in his long-term plans, the Frenchman did little to play down reports of a temporary switch away.
“Yes, of course [Campbell is in my long-term plans],” Le Prof told a press conference on Friday.
“But I cannot guarantee the happiness of every player. I try to make everybody happy.
“I personally love Joel Campbell and have a big respect for him and I wish every day that he is happy from morning till evening. We have all got to deal with our problems.”
Campbell, who starred for Costa Rica in the World Cup, will understandably be disappointed over his lack of first-team football this season – but it is worth pointing out that Wenger knows what he is doing.
He is not the first prodigious talent that the 65-year-old manager has nurtured. He need only glance at the calibre of names that have developed into world-class players under Wenger’s guidance to realise that it might be in his best interests to stick around.
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