The curious case of Bournemouth's Benik Afobe

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When Benik Afobe departed Arsenal to seek pastures new with Championship side Wolves, very few fans batted an eye lid.

The 22-year-old made little impact at the Emirates due to various injuries and a series of loan spells, scoring twice against Manchester United during a 4-0 victory for MK Dons in 2014.

As a result, in January 2015, Afobe completed a move to Molineux and impressed during his year-long stay under manager Kenny Jackett.


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A transfer to the Premier League followed last month, joining Eddie Howe's Bournemouth for a fee of £10 million and proving a sound acquisition after scoring three goals in his first four league games for the Cherries.

Questions have since been raised of Arsene Wenger's judgement, the Frenchman allowing Afobe to leave for just £2 million. Arsenal's manager appeared to favour the likes of Yaya Sanogo and Chuba Akpom over the Englishman, who failed to make a single competitive appearance for the Gunners.

Understandably, there were concerns over Afobe's fitness levels after the spate of injuries he suffered earlier in his career, shedding some light on perhaps why he fell out of favour under Wenger.

And after multiple hit-and-miss loan spells, the 66-year-old's decision to sell was perhaps justified, with Danny Welbeck's arrival only but lessening Afobe's chances of eventually breaking into the first team set up.

History suggests Arsenal might have missed a trick with the striker, though. Manchester United legend Andy Cole endured a similar experience at the Gunners, making just one appearance before moving to Bristol City in 1992.

Cole went on to become one of the Premier League's finest and was very much a case of one that got away from Arsenal. Wenger can only hope Afobe doesn't follow the same path.

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