Arsene Wenger may have found himself in hot water with Danny Welbeck after admitting he would have rather taken the striker on loan from Manchester United.
The striker joined the Gunners in a controversial £16 million deal on the final day of the summer transfer window. Since then, Welbeck has scored two goals for England and a number of Manchester United legends have questioned Louis van Gaal's decision.
A week of silence
Strangely, it took a week for Wenger to say anything about his new addition. The Arsenal boss faced the media for the first time on Thursday morning and questions naturally centred around Welbeck rather than their upcoming game against Manchester City.
His continued silence had inspired rumours that Wenger did not commission the deal, but Ivan Gazidis took advantage of his absence to secure the 23-year-old's signature. Arsenal fans hoping to have such rumours cleared up were left disappointed.
Confusingly, Wenger revealed that if he had stayed in London rather than flying to Rome for a charity game, Welbeck would not be an Arsenal player.
Wenger said: "If I'd stayed at home he wouldn't be here now."
Thanks for clearing that one up then Wenger. But you will be surprised to hear that his cryptic revelations were not the most controversial of the press conference.
Asked if he would have preferred Welbeck on loan, Wenger admitted: "With an option to buy yes. In the end, when it was a permanent transfer or loan with an option to buy, I was happy to buy permanently."
Those familiar with the Football Manager game series would have shrieked. Time and again they've clicked the wrong button in a virtual press conference, only to find their new star is unhappy with the manager's comments. As a result, the player's morale goes down.
Football Manager gets things right, and there is a chance this scenario has just played out at London Colney.
Welbeck arrived at Arsenal with damaged confidence. He had reportedly been told by Van Gaal that he had not impressed him sufficiently and that youngster James Wilson would be prioritised.
Despite the fact Arsenal could be considered a good career move, the local boy would have hated to leave Old Trafford. Being told he was no longer good enough would have hit him hard.
Hit him when he's down
Wenger's vote of no confidence would have done Welbeck no favours. The striker would have been on a high after his performance against Switzerland, but the Arsenal boss's admission would have knocked him back down to earth.
It is obvious that any football club would like to loan a player with an option to buy. Who else wouldn't like to sample a product for a small fee for a year before deciding whether to buy? Imagine if Apple offered their enormous iPhone 6 on loan for £50 for a year. If you like it, pay the rest of the billion pound price tag. If you don't, give it back.
There was simply no need for Wenger to let the cat out of the bag. Why ruin the illusion that Arsenal are not executing a flawless five-year plan, with Welbeck being scouted 100 times before a move was finally made at the perfect time. That's what fans want to hear and, more importantly, so do the players.
Welbeck needs a club that wants him. He needs to feel valued and to be given that key role. His two goals against Switzerland was not his arrival as a world-class finisher but a sign of things to come if he is allowed to flourish.
Wenger's comments would not have helped. Whether it is foot in mouth syndrome or a touch of tough love, it threatens to wreck what should have been an excellent week for the young Englishman.
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