Joel Campbell is seemingly close to completing his return to Arsenal following a starring display at the World Cup with Costa Rica. The young forward has yet to make an appearance for the Gunners, but may be afforded the chance to do so during pre-season.
Back in London
Campbell tweeted on Tuesday night that he was in the UK following his post-World Cup holiday and would now appear set to begin training with his Arsenal colleagues, three years after he was signed by Arsene Wenger.
The 22-year-old has spent each of the last three seasons on loan, with Lorient, Real Betis and Olympiacos, and was able to perform most notably during his spell in Greece in the most recent campaign.
A haul of eight goals, including one memorable strike against Manchester United in the Champions League, ensured he arrived at the World Cup high on confidence, and was able to surpass expectations as Costa Rica reached the quarter-final.
World Cup star
Campbell’s displays raised hopes that he may yet have a career at Arsenal, although his future at the Emirates Stadium still appears far from certain given the wealth of attacking talent at the disposal of Wenger.
Arsenal already have numerous players able to operate to distinction in Campbell’s preferred positions, and the acquisition of Alexis Sanchez from Barcelona further damages his long-term prospects.
Campbell should, however, at least be afforded an opportunity to prove his worth to the Arsenal manager at close quarters for the first time before a decision is made on his future with the club.
It may be that Wenger chooses to loan Campbell out for another season, this time to a Premier League club, although there may be the temptation to sell given the player’s supposed £16 million valuation.
Watch: The latest Arsenal transfer news
Trip to the USA
But for now Campbell will have a maiden chance to play in Arsenal colours, and would seem set to join up with the club as they head for a pre-season trip to the USA later on Wednesday.
The Gunners will face New York Red Bulls, the team of club legend Thierry Henry, on Saturday before making a return to England for the Emirates Cup which begins the following weekend.