Friday, March 1, 2024

Report: Benfica wanted Campbell, Sporting turned him down

Portuguese publication O Jogo claims Benfica did everything in their power to persuade Arsenal to sell Joel Campbell aside from offering the Gunners their €12 million asking price.

Apparently president Luis Felipe Vieira sanctioned a bid of €10 million for the Costa Rican attacker only to reach Arsene Wenger’s voicemail and a message that said, “I’m in Rome today, learning little bit how to use vanishing spray. Please try little bit Dick and little bit Ivan in the London office.”

The report includes a quote from Campbell’s representative, Joaquim Batica, who claims that Arsenal refused to let the 22-year-old leave, a stance that contradicts the notion the player had a price on his head but one that tallies with Wenger’s comments last week:

“We’ve had lots of enquiries and turned them down. There have been plenty of clubs interested, but I don’t know how many.

“Once I say to my assistant he won’t go out on loan, even if people ask about him, my assistant doesn’t even tell me. When I say no it’s no. He’s definitely a target and a player who is wanted by many clubs.”

There is another hypothesis as to why Benfica got the cold shoulder. A Bola, another Portuguese paper (not to be confused with the organ-eating virus), claim Campbell was the juicy carrot dangled as part of a player-plus-cash deal for Sporting Lisbon’s William Carvalho.

The Gunners have long been linked with the defensive midfielder and apparently offered Campbell on a season long loan plus €16 million in cash. If you happen to be by a beach, grab yourself a shell and put it to your ear…apparently you can still hear the laughter coming from the Estádio José Alvalade. Or so A Bola would have you believe.

Oh, but wait…apparently that whole story could be guff as well. As Sport Witness reveal here. 

So what do we know? Not much for sure, aside from Campbell is an Arsenal player until January at least. No doubt the fun and games surrounding his future will kick off again in a couple of weeks.

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i had wondered about campbell being used in a deal for carvalho. seems plausible (not that it happened at all).

maybe we will test sportings resolve one again in january. that would be exciting. cup tied or not he would be a fantastic addition, if wenger is even interested at all.


I can’t be the only person who actually wants to see him play in an Arsenal shirt after three years of loans… Can I? At least some fucking cup games for the kid…


I agree, I just don’t think Wenger has got to grips with just how good Joel can become. He is a naturally gifted footballer who can turn a defence inside out. Joel has the potential to be one of our very best players. TH14 I believe agrees.


I would rather have Campbell play with a broken leg than see that that other gangly sack of shite on the team sheet.


Doesnt seem to be much point in endlessly loaning him out either give him a chamce or sell him. Im glad he has been given a chance to try and force his way in


Not going to even try to guess what Arsene’s plans are for Campbell but hopefully he’ll get a chance to prove himself.

Still surprised we didn’t go all out for Carvalho. Thought we’d get Rabiot too. Glad its all over now though and we can get on with the football and fully support the team that we’ve got.


Campbell will come good for us as a LW this season

Injured Gooner

I have the same feeling about this, the goal he scored off of Bellerin’s cross in pre-season was quite tasty.


Play Joel instead of Ozil. Ozil in bad form and slow not as good as he was at Real Madrid.


He’s not setting the world on fire but to be fair if you’re giving playing in Ronaldo you’re going to get a lot of assists since he scores 40+ goals a season. Ozil just had to knock the ball towards Ronaldo and it would be blasted into the goal from the tension of Ronaldo’s freakish neck.

Ozil is plodding along quite nicely and hopefully when we start clicking things will pick up for him as well.


Go to sleep bro

Petit's Handbag

I’m really unsure about Campbell, as Arsene seems to be. Might be a bit Carlos Vela in that the Premier League doesn’t suit him.
Hope to be proved wemrong though


Sadly Wenger wasn’t bothered about Joel until the World Cup and pretty much forgot about him while he was on lone. He’s had to develop himself even though last season his visa to play in England was granted. It’s a shame he was just farmed out without a second thought as he would have had a lot of playing time last season, and of course he was the only Arsenal player to score v Man United last season.


From what I heard, he got his work permit just after a loan deal had been agreed.


This season Afobe’s upped him by getting 2! Maybe Sanogo will get 3. I would love it like Kevin Keegan would have loved it.

Glory Hunter

Clearly he’ll play in the League cup.
Arsene usually uses the league cup to blood in new strikers.
He did it with Eduardo,Vela, Giroud etc.
Its up to Campbell to fight his way into the 1st team


Sanogo has no fought or proved anything yest he starts important game, its strange really that he and rosicky don’t get a run seeing how poor the team has been playing.

Andy Mack

I think Campbell has been on the bench for every PL game this season and had a little time against everton and in the community shield. It’s a long season and he’ll get more time as the season goes on. As for being ahead of Sanogo, Campbell isn’t a CF he’s a secondary striker and although he could cover against some teams, he’s not right for the teams we’ve played against so far. He can run the channels but can’t play with his back to goal and a PL CB hacking his calves. He may learn to do that in… Read more »


Reminds me of another time Wenger let a promising youngsters potential go unfulfilled…..

Talking about me, baby.

Me So Hornsey

We should have upped our offer for carvalho if, indeed, he can also cover centre back as well.

Our need is so strong Wenger should have offered them Campbell + sanogo + ryo mayachi + abu diaby plus a massive casket of mediera wine.

How could they refuse?

Poldi's Hyper Masculine Voice

For this reason maybe wenger didn’t play him much in epl yet.

Nostalgic one

Got to be better than Wellbeck, certainly can’t be any worse. Wellbeck is a £16mil TURD you wait and see. Couldn’t hit a barn door. We’ve already got too many Wellbcks at the club. I’ll be amazed if he gets 5 goals this season.

Stuart Steele (@Stuart_Ten)

That’s the spirit!…..


Support Arsenal do you? Hell of a way to show it.


These kind of comments (and unfortunate there are plenty of them on here, and twitter) always bring to mind that quote by King Dennis: “I really like Arsenal. But you, do you really like Arsenal? Or just Arsenal with trophies?” Criticism is fine regarding performance and things in general but what’s the point in supporting any club if you don’t get behind the players who wear the shirt. Welbeck might not have been top of anyone’s list but he’s an Arsenal player now, he’s not even kicked a ball for us yet and you’re willing to write him off. Odd.… Read more »


A proven goalscoring record…you sure about that?

We just rid of some deadwood for United and paid for Falcao for a year!

Oh the sweet f*cking irony.

Blaise Hayes

Welbeck had .55 goals per 90-penalties last season. Better than Rooney (.52), Giroud (.44), and .02 worse than van Persie (.57) while playing mostly on the wing in the worst United side since the ’80s. So yeah proven goal scoring record…I’m sure about it, are you?


If they were employees at a regular office, you can be pretty sure that Joel Campbell would be pretty pissed off by now…He’ll feel like the dude who works hard and does good work but can’t get a look in/promotion because he isn’t the boss’ favourite.


Or maybe, like in any good office, you start off as a clerk and after a few years you’ve worked your way up and get promotion once you’ve proved yourself to be better than your colleagues. And if it’s anything like my office, the once’s with the most talent aren’t always the best workers.


What of Sanogo?? The excuse that campbell has to prove anything is nonsense when Sanogo is starting games


Sanogo = Diaby up front – outside of the injuries.

Wenger does like to have his favourites despite the obvious.


Blaise Hayes

Do you think maybe he has favorites for a reason? Game time, while VERY important, is a very small fraction of what the coaching staff have to evaluate players. They get to work with these guys everyday. We see them once or twice a week if that.


Give Campbell the biscuit wenger. He earnded the biscuit on lone in french and spanish and greece and now you want to save biscuit.

give him biscuit man watch him score then say oh cheyu you are so right please be my god

and cheyu says nothing because eating a lemon puff


I agree, I just don’t think Wenger has got to grips with just how good Joel can become. He is a naturally gifted footballer who can turn a defence inside out. Joel has the potential to be one of our very best players. TH14 I believe agrees.


And TH14 only had potential when he was young and was shocking when he first came to Arsenal. It took time for him to develop into a world class player.


That’s it Colin, keep posting the same comment about how you’re better able to get to grips with how good a player Joel Campbell can become than Wenger is, despite his years of experience and the fact that he sees him train every day. I’m starting to believe you


Haha spot on sir. 99.9% of the people who has this strange belief in Campbell (that they won’t share with any other player in our squad) has only seen him score that goal against United and in the world cup. Even there, he faded considerably during the tournament and as the games got harder and more important, he was pedestrian. We even bought a player who did the opposite, was world class in every game, who a lot of people don’t really believe in. Yet they have a rock hard belief in Campbell as our savior. It’s all very weird… Read more »


Still done more than Sanogo though.

Sanogo is the counter argument to anything anti-Campbell related.


Bollocks, he shone in the Emirates Cup while Sanogo’s goals were all on a plate and he still nearly f*cked one of those up!

And can you see Sanogo starring for a team in a World Cup??? That is hardly a throwaway comment. More of a supreme endorsement.

Campbell at another top club would explode.

Wenger gets as much wrong as he does right, which is why we remain in limbo. Some supporters seem oblivious to that even when it’s in front of them.


I guess given their poor record Sanogo could’ve started for England

Injured Gooner

Guys, this argument seems a bit senseless as all young players have potential. Even players like Perrez and Berkamp were benched when they first started. When their playing time ended, they often spoke of how Arsene had told them that they were going to be benched so they could get a feel of the games in England before being thrown into the mix. Their time will come, hopefully through rotation and not injury to other key players.


You can’t judge Welbeck until he has had a chance. Fergie picked him for an away game in Madrid at 21 years of age, he scored, he’s now 23 and hasn’t really kicked on under Moyes (no surprise).
If Wenger can work on his finishing he scored a few for us, he’s certainly very adept at linking in and around the box, to think wenger just signed him for convenience or without plan is ridiculous. You can’t chastise Wenger for being so tight


In fairness, Welbeck last year had his best season in the PL in terms of goals/appearances. And that despite being part of a happless ManU side and often being played on the left. Same number of goals and a better ratio than Adam Lallana for example who was playing in his natural position and costs 10 million more.

So, even under Moye he improved and he is at an age when he can become better. As a fan I’m really happy with Danny, with him and Alexis our attack has upgraded significantly vs. last year.

Injured Gooner

Interesting observation this. Danny on the left will add a bit of pace there when Giroud is back. For now then, lets hope he stayes healthy and fit. Scores a few and by the time Giroud gets back he’s in a lovely purple patch so we can rotate the three of them: Alexis, Danny and Giroud.

Please let the injury Gods be on our side this season!!!

Parisian Weetabix

In fairness to le boss the wing positions are pretty chocka. Alexis, Poldi, Ox, Santi/Özil are all looking for games right now, and Theo will be soon.

For me the best thing he can do is work hard on his game in training and obliterate in every reserve game he gets so the manager can’t overlook him.

That’s what I’d do, anyway, if I was in his position.

Gunning 4 EPL

Now Wenger for the first time stick to his rule of not letting player move out of the club at will…. Hope this lad brace up and shoulder the responsility bestow on him…

Obi wan

I’m so disappointed I thought we’d buy the attacking midfielder we so desperately need pmsl


You can’t judge Welbeck until he has had a chance. Fergie picked him for an away game in Madrid at 21 years of age, he scored, he’s now 23 and hasn’t really kicked on under Moyes or Van Gaal (no surprise). Under Wenger he could score a few for us, he’s certainly very adept at linking in and around the box, he also has pace, something Giroud lacked. To think Wenger just signed him for convenience or without plan is ridiculous. You can’t chastise Wenger for being so tight with money and then claim he randomly gambled 16 million on… Read more »


He gambled £42m last year on the last day and is struggling to get that investment back out of one of the best players in the world on past form.

That was not on the cards until Bale was going there. How do I know this? Can you see him spending £40m on Suarez and then £42m on Ozil in the same month? I take it you know the guy right?

Wellbeck at £16m is exactly that, a last minute buy because the Falcao situation made it an option.


Bale was going there since the start of the window, ffs

Alright Mate

Easy to say now, but not so at the time. Just like Falcao even thought he was going to Madrid.


I suspect the rumbling about Campbell’s future may well be drowned out the unearthly groaning from certain quarters about Welbeck to be honest. Unfortunately another player who will be victimised by some Gooners before he even kicks a ball..


I think arseblog is not happy to see Campbell stay. Most stories on Campbell on this blog are negative.There should more stories about why Campbell deserves a chance in this Arsenal side. I guess he’s not Giroud so he won’t be supported.

Andy Mack

There’s lots of support for him, Just read the article and comments!


Can’t believe we have giroud;welbeck;sanogo;Walcott;Sanchez;ox;podolski;cazorla;Campbell all competing over 3 places and only six defenders to cover 4 positions


Wenger said Campbell was adapting slowly. May be wenger’s just saving Campbell until he is ready, unlike what he did with sanogo…too bad the welbeck move didn’t happen earlier for us to loan out sanogo…


As a Portuguese Arsenal fan, and someone who follows the Portuguese closely, I can’t believe a bigger push wasn’t made for William Carvalho. From what’s being reported in the Portuguese press, we were only 3-4M off of his valuation. If it simply took removing Campbell from the deal and adding some cash, why wasn’t it done? Carvalho is Yaya Toure-esque, with more defensive responsibility. This is a player that will end up at a top-10 club in the world within a year, and probably for his full release clause, which Sporting were willing to decrease for Arsenal. Carvalho is a… Read more »


* That should say “someone who follows the Portuguese league closely” **


Overly sensible you mean… Im sure you were one of those who felt wenger was foolish for not bringing Samba and the like to the emirates…. see how that turned out.


The fact that you’re comparing the two respective players clearly demonstrates you’ve never seen William play…

Maybe you’ve seen a couple YouTube videos of William and think their similar size and skin colour makes them identical players?


or Gary Cahill, good thing we dodged that bullet

or Fabregas, obviously past it

On the other hand Wenger was wise enough to sign Park, Santos, Gervinho, …I’m bored already, take your pick.


Hey EagleCelebration, it’s insightful to hear from a Portuguese Gooner on the Carvalho situation, and i’m absolutely convinced that a young international like him would hugely improve our squad. But let’s not allow the media to convince us that we are in full command of the facts, figures and other details of the deal. You didn’t mention the part-ownership issue either! Love the guy’s potential (especially looking at our current set-up) but unless you’ve played at Barcelona or Real or another top-level European club and bring that world-class experience with you, Dick ain’t signing no cheque for 25-35million euros or… Read more »


Fair point re: co-ownership. Unfortunately, loads of our young talent in Portugal are burdened by similar issues. I disagree with your points about price tag. Pogba and Vidal are not fair comparisons. Juve took advantage of contractual issues between Pogba and Man Utd and got him on the cheap. As for Vidal, he was coming off an injury-plagued season at Leverkusen, and Juve was lucky to get him at that price (it probably helped that a few of his good Chilean mates were already in Turin…) Fair comparisons would be other young players full of potential coming out of the… Read more »


Would have loved us to get Vidal post-Leverkusen as he was absolute dynamite for Chile’s youth sides. But not for Carvalho money! Still a mystery as to why we didn’t have a punt on young post-Olympiakos Yaya after his brother became a legend here and repeatedly told anyone who’d listen that his bro would be even better than him. One for Arsene’s book i suppose. I do agree that because of our special need for a player in the role its sad we couldn’t close a deal for Carvalho. If we could afford to keep regular non-playing types like Miyaichi,… Read more »

Blaise Hayes

I really felt there was something in the William rumors and I am disappointed that it didn’t happen. The fact that it didn’t tells me that either the four parties involved couldn’t reach an agreement or Arsenal has identified a better signing down the road. I am fairly confident that we will be signing someone to fill the deeper lying midfield spot next summer. My personal theory is with the new pattern of making one large (30-40+ mil) signing every summer unless we could get William on the relative cheap we would hold out till next summer and really try… Read more »

Terry neills boxers

Dont forget we also turned down an opportunity to have Yaya Toure. There is no limit to the amount of talent that Arsenal are not prepared to pay for

The Fax Man

Seems a bit harsh to make our new signing feel like he is the last striker on earth we wanted!!! Ever stood in a line waiting for a captain to choose you as part of their team, and be the last one chosen, Horrible!!! Anyway, getting back to it, let’s all get behind him, it’s hard from his perspective, and a big step ( he was practically raised by ManUre!!), he has the skills to prove to LVG, and make him eat his shorts! As for Sanogo ?? Yes, he may come good, but we should use him as sub… Read more »

True Red

I preferred it when you said you followed the Portuguese closely.

The Fax Man

We need to take the game to our opponents like Chelski did to Everton, by half time be up by 3 or 4 goals, clean sheet, then everyone get behind the ball, and play tiki taka football and see how many times we beat the number of passes made since our last game!!!


Lets just see how joel will fare when given a chance. As for welbeck, he knows epl so will need little or no time to adapt to our system may be our sturrige in disguise


It’s an absolute joke that Campbell can’t get a run but Sanogo who is quite possibly one of the worst Arsenal strikers ever continues to get games. The kid proved in the world cup that he can play the line striker position and do it very well and still is behind a crap player like Sanogo. Yet again Arsene looking like he’s lost his marbles.

Andy Mack

In the WC he was mainly used as a winger/secondary striker (his natural role) but can play CF later in a WC game when the opposition defend with a highline, so he cann turn and run at the defenders. That rarely happens in the PL. Sanogo is much more physically suited to the CF role in the PL. If Sanogo was being used as a winger then you’d be correct but as a CF you’re wrong.


Yeah Welbeck is definitely going to surprise a lot of fans, a bit like sturridge. I for one am a huge fan.


Joel should leave because its obvious wenger doesn’t believe in him…i’d be pissed off if my club spent 16m on a player who i’m probably better than all because he is english and what not. Campbell had a better world cup than stupid welbeck and is obviously a better finisher than that numpty but no…wenger ruins the team spirit by buying a man u reject


Campbell winger, Welbeck striker. You get?


Campbell=striker for costa rica
Welbeck= winger for england



Yeah, for his clubs, Campbell almost always plays at RW. 32 league appearances for Olympiacos last season, and only two at CF. Why does he play CF for Costa Rica? Because they have no one else, obviously.

And Welbeck is a striker. We bought him to play as a striker. End of story.


base on what he is better. ist not like Joel Campbell is a proven goalscorer, he is not. he is totally umproven at PL level , stop overhyping someone who has never kick the ball in a big league. he look exciting at the world cup but that doesnt mean he is warrant a starting place at arsenal .
you probably thought jensen was a goalscoring maestro after Euro92 before he join arsenal and wait for month until he finally score one (ps:i wasnt there 🙁 )

Andy Mack

He has been on the bench in every PL game and the shield and had a bit of time in both.
That really sound like AW has no faith…. really!


Must be Arseblog thumbing down comments ridiculously that much.


you welcome


First up I wanna say I think Joel Campbell will be a big player for us in time and I can’t wait to see him get more game time too. But you shouldn’t compare him at all to sanogo… Sanogo is back to goal type of striker that clearly wenger wants us to use in our system. Campbell is not that type of player at all. He’s an explosive, front to goal type of player. Obviously his hold up play must not be great and that’s why he hasn’t been used as a striker. For us he will need to… Read more »

conner bumba peden

I for one think Welbeck is being hard done by here his obviously good enough at what he does or Ferguson wouldn’t of kept him as long as he did. His always been played out of position at utd and as always been behind shreak and rip so never really was a stand out player. But he will give us more goals then giroud any day of week and certainly won’t be hard to out do Sanogo. As for Campbell he will get chance and will take it

The Gooner Ramble

“…little bit Dick or little bit Ivan…”

Love it!


As expected no Carvalho just like no Yann MVilla, No Gustavo no Wanyama. Simply not good enough for the over inflated price bandied around by delusional Portugese reporters. Did Portugal have that great a world cup? No. Was Carvalho so outstanding to justify such a high price tag? No Are we desperately in need of a DM with Arteta/Flamini/Chambers/Coquelin/Diaby? No Do you really think we would sell Campbell after a good season in Greece and the world cup? Unless you are Portugese again the answer is No. Are Portugal any better a league than say Greece where Campbell had a… Read more »

ronererier than ever

Yes no one good ever came out of a Portuguese league. I mean Falmini is deffo much better.


Looks like we’ve bought ourselves an injured striker, it’s Kim Källström all over again ^^

Yankee Gooner

I’d love to see what Campbell can do with the first team, but I’m not ready to commission a statue because he had a great game against Uruguay.


i think Campbell needs to be given a chance in the first team on the wing over Podolski IMO


We buy Welbeck and wanted to get rid of Cambell. Being has its incentives. I would prefer them to fight for the starting spot.

Arsenal English Core : Are they just poster boys?


“Please try little bit Dick and little bit Ivan in the London office.”


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