Tuesday, June 6, 2023

Sanllehi: Ramsey decision not taken lightly

Arsenal’s Head of Football Raul Sanllehi says that the decision to withdraw new deal offered to Aaron Ramsey was not taken lightly, but has once again admitted that the club need to improve when it comes to contract renewals.

In recent years, the Gunners have seen Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Mesut Ozil, Jack Wilshere and Alexis Sanchez all reach the final 12 months of their current deals, and only in the case of the former did the club bring in any money after he was sold to Liverpool for £40m.

Ozil renewed for a club record £350,000 a week; Sanchez went to Manchester United with Henrikh Mkhitaryan coming the other way; while Wilshere joined West Ham for free.

This season, as well as Ramsey, Danny Welbeck, Petr Cech and Nacho Monreal are all into the final months of their contracts, but it’s the Welshman’s situation that has dominated the headlines.

Speaking about the decision to retract a contract offer, the former Barcelona man said, “It is more of a gathering of strategies and what our ideas are.

What I can assure you is that any decision we take at the club of any kind, whether it concerns players or any other thing, it is very thoroughly thought through, analysed and discussed by different people.

“We are very responsible for every decision we take so we do not take these decisions lightly. We really try to analyse and decide the best thing for the club.

“That is our ultimate aim – to find what is best for the club.”

With Ramsey their hands might have been tied a little, and it does take two to tango over any new contract, but whichever way you dress it up, letting a player go for free who could have brought in tens of millions in a transfer fee last summer is not a great way to operate when you’re a club which is run in a famously self-sustaining way.

It’s why Sanllehi has once more reiterated the need for Arsenal to do better in that regard.

“The idea is not to go to the last year of contracts,” he said. “We are going to try to avoid that.

“It is no secret that the sooner you leave out the uncertainty of the length of the contract, the better. You should try to avoid always going into the last year of a contract for all reasons – from the club’s side and also for the player.

“We’ll try to get clarity earlier, yes. As a normal rule all clubs in the world try not to go into the last year of a contract.

“Then you have clarity over whether you want to sell, renew, send out on loan – all the options over that period.”

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It’s the flip flopping that bothers me. Clearly the decision was not to sell in the summer. You can agree or disagree on that, but if that was the decision, stick to it. Sign him. What happened was the worst of both worlds: lose the player and lose the money.


Maybe Ramsey did not want to be sold? In the end he held all the cards, not that much the club can do about it.


Maybe Unai wanted to have a better idea of him before making a decision. It is clear now: NOT GOOD ENOUGH. I like the person but average player.

A Different George

But if he is really just an average player, then we did not lose much by not selling him earlier. If he really is not good enough for us, then he is not good enough for any of the big clubs who pay real transfer fees. Will he be playing at a West Ham or even an Everton next year–or at Bayern?


I wonder too. But overall, wherever he goes, his performances will speak for themselves. My money is on Everton, however, I may add that if Sir Arsene takes one of those big clubs and call on Ramsey, it does not give us a real indication regarding his value or how he is regarded by those big clubs.


After working with players like Modric, Veratti over the years (the list goes on) i can imagine why he wasnt that impressed.


We will know how successful the new team are in doing so by whether they manage to extend with those who currently have two years left on their contracts. According to transfermarkt the following will be out of contract during 2020:
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang
Mesut Özil
Henrikh Mkhitaryan
Shkodran Mustafi
Sokratis Sokratis

While Jenkinson and Koschielny will be out of contract during 2019. While clearly we should not be extending everyone of these contracts. it will be interesting whether we manage to extend some and sell others before their contract runs out


The 5 players you list as having contracts until 2020 all have contracts ending in the summer of 2021

Olivije Žirod

You meant they will be out of contract in the 2021.


Sorry about the mistake! yes, there contracts run out during 2021. It will be interresting to see whether we are serious about not allowing people to enter the last year of their contract. If so the sign a contract or be sold for these players are the summer of 2020 and negotiations should take place during next season

Andy Mack

Some of those players will be well into their 30s, so probably won’t be offered new multi-year contracts. The important part is the contracts for players that will still be in their 20s then…

Parlour's Paypacket

I don’t understand why they didn’t renew and then sell later if that’s the decision. At least then we would get a fee. If you look at the clubs he’s being linked with, its clear we wouldn’t struggle to shift him (injury permitting).


renew at £££/week that other clubs wouldn’t pay, making him unsellable i think?


I wouldn’t want us to end up with an Adebayor at City situation where his wages will prove a stumbling block to shifting him later. Its better to bite the bullet now, and give his wages to the sort of 1st teamer Emery needs to execute his match plan


Jenkinson at Arsenal lol

Faisal Narrage

There’s a reason we struggled to shift loads of players like Jenkinsons (rumoured to be on £70k weekly) and even Nicky B (was on £52k….almost a decade ago); because nobody wants to buy players on massive wages.

Nobody would be buying Ramsey for crazy fees let alone match his £250k wages. To put it into context, even Hazard doesn’t make £250k.


Ramsey doesn’t make £250k.. that’s what he wanted and then some

Faisal Narrage

Erm, my comment was a response to someone asking why didn’t we sign him up for the 250k contract and then sell him later.


There are no great excuses for not renewing at the right time if the club wants to. The length of the contract isn’t a mystery.

Hopefully the new regime will do much better.


Its a balancing act with the contracts. We have been poor at it for years. Giving players who arent good enough large and long contracts then unable to shift them off the books. Coupled with allowing first teamers to run theirs down. There is extenuating circumstances in each individual case but it needs resolving.

Andy Mack

Also if they give a player a great contract but then he gets the injury virus or even one major injury, and they’re impossible to sell on for more than the salary the club is already committed to paying them…


This having to defend the Ramsey decision is getting boring; We won’t renew his contract, end of. The player may bleat all he wants but the fact is, he and his agent tried to string us along while waiting to see what else might turn up but then for once, we stood firm and instead pulled the rug from under them. It doesn’t take months to sign a document if there’s a willingness to do so by all parties. Ramsey should concentrate on showcasing the skills he feels are worth the amount he was insisting on. As it stands, he… Read more »

La Defense

Mic drop your majesty!


Very well said King Henry. It seems to me as if you pulled those words from my tongue.


Clearly the Club is trying to amend the mistakes left behind by the previous administration. Ramsey’s run-down is a result of the previous one and not the current which is why his contract situation is what it is.

Hopefully the Club can assure that renewed players dont fall into the same situation and it seems they are trying their best to remedy previous mistakes


It’s hard because the club can’t afford to renew everyone’s contract, without the signing fees impacting hard.
I’d anticipate a lot of outgoings over the next 18 months


Players get paid many times what they were being paid 15 years ago. Fifa should enforce players to being paid a lump sum at the end of the contract, with a basic wage paid weekly. The interest on that amount would go well towards paying for grass roots football.

This would kill off agents only interested in making a quick buck and stirring up trouble. And more importantly show the youngsters that their worth is ensuring that they complete a contract fully rather than how much they can renegotiate for in 1.5 years time.


Tax management of that would be a nightmare. They exploit enough loopholes already


Would result in more players running out their contracts. Puts the club in a bad spot.

Kartik Iyer

@BW9 Agreed. Plus the players get the double bonus of a contract completion bonus and a signing on fee + hefty wages from the new club. All the more reason for them to run contracts out.


Just shows poorly we’ve been run and how much better things could have been done.


Well we have 3 players that can fulfill similar function in Ozil, Ramsey and Mhki. There is also Smith-Rowe up and coming. Ozil just renegotiated. Mhki IMO was a mistake. We panicked and hedged our bets with him by selling on Alexis to United instead of taking nominally less from City and not get hamstrung by Raiolla and United’s dictate. We should have bought Mahrez then imo before City came in and jacked up his price. It would have been easier to renegotiate on Ramsey had we done so. The club now wants to draw a line in the sand… Read more »


The issue if we sign Ramsey to a massive contract is it seems pretty obvious that he and Ozil can’t really co-exist as it forces Ozil out to the wing. His contract would be large enough then that it would likely to be difficult to sell him to a mid- lower club & if you look at this objectively he wouldn’t get into Liverpool, Citeh, Spuds (if he would go there) or Chelsea’s first teams. We would run a pretty major risk of ending up with an Abadeyor or Nasri situation – having a player on the books that we… Read more »


Mkhitaryan was certainly not a mistake. He was excellent last season with goals and assists. Hasn’t been at his best this season with his finishing but still makes s major contribution

Kartik Iyer

Had we taken the 30-35 mil for Sanchez, it wouldn’t have bought us a top tier player. Losing him for free would have been stupid. Given our limited options, I’d say that in mkhi we got the best deal possible. Don’t forget that at Dortmund mkhi was amazing. At his peak he is a player similar to ozil in stature. We got the better end of the swap deal anyway.


Sanchez chose United over City. It wasn’t our decision where he went, he had to agree personal terms. So the only option was get Miki in return and even getting that was better than the other option which was nothing.

La Defense

Very encouraging to see the club’s courageous stand despite the populist uproar surrounding the Ramsey contract saga. Emery has deemed him not good enough, and that should be that. In years past the club would have capitulated to a mediocre player’s unreasonable demands, but they are now standing firm. Emery’s judgement has been vindicated already with Jack Wilshere, and Ramsey’s case will prove similar when he’s struggling for playtime at Everton or Newcastle. The new management is proving to be a breath of fresh air, and not just more of the same.

Bai Blagoi

Oh come on, Raul… What are you trying to convince? That Ramsey’s wage demands are too high? Then offer him what you believe is right and then the ball is in his court.. What your action means is that Ramsey is a player that you don’t want anymore at the club, and this has nothing to do with the ‘unfortunate’ situation that his contract hasn’t been resolved earlier. You obviously don’t like the guy, for whatever reason, and kicking him out was the first thing on your agenda after you saw Ivan’s back. “The idea is not to go to… Read more »

La Defense

“What your action means is that Ramsey is a player that you don’t want anymore at the club…”, That’s exactly what Raul is trying to say with the corporate speak.

I also agree with him.

Bai Blagoi

Which is plain stupid. Ramsey is a world-class player that will have no problems to continue a successful career in another top club (hopefully not in England).
Even if not, he is still a valuable asset that you can’t just let go. We got 40 million for Ox, and the value of Ramsey would have been double, if he had resigned.

La Defense

“Ramsey is a world class player…”

He’s not even world class on FIFA mate.


The reason that he isn’t wanted at the club any more is that Ramsey is not a very good football player. The reason he wasn’t sold in the summer, when he should have been, is probably because of Wenger and Gazidis, who both seemed to think he’s worth keeping. After looking at him, the new management team have agreed that we can do better than waste a fortune on an injury prone super-sub, who has no position in the team and doesn’t seem capable of playing well with other team members. I wholeheartedly agree with their decision, and whoever ends… Read more »


Ramsey no longer fits into our first team. We cannot renew him on a massive long term contract and play him 10 minutes a game. Regardless of the previous bad management of the contracts, this is the right decision now. His recent performances for Wales have been mediocre too.

Faisal Narrage

“In recent years, the Gunners have seen Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Mesut Ozil, Jack Wilshere and Alexis Sanchez all reach the final 12 months of their current deals” Goes back further and it’s even worse. We’re talking – Nasri – Van Persie – Clichy (I think) – Sagna (left on a free) – Ox – Gnabry – Nelson (almost lost him) – Sanchez – Ozil – Jack – Ramsey -Welbeck – Cech (though this seems more normal) -Nacho Then even in the academy, we had; – Bannacer (now worked his way up to Serie A) – Chris Willock – Virginia – McGuane… Read more »

Don’t Forget

I’m tired of this. He’s leaving. That’s fine. Was it handled in the best way? No. But we were in the middle of changing our manager and director and if this is the worst to come of it, that we miss out on the sale of a player who hasn’t been at his best for us in a long time then oh well. Time to move on, I say.


Blogs, just wondering if you know this article has been used on the ‘all football’ app, and doesn’t appear to accredit Arseblog?

Thierry bergkamp

We all know the club need to change how it deals with contracts. Whatever happens, the 5mil spent on Ramsey has been excellent value for money.

Kartik Iyer

Leaving aside the Ramsey matter for a sec, what about Monreal? Surely we have to sign him up on a 2-3 year deal, our most consistent player. We also need to sign up Petr Cech. He’s still one of the best in the league.


I read A lot of Maybees, another one would be that the principles they want to establish and change around contract management would be much dented, by this action, it is clear that the club means business. Özil is a one off, not a trend setter.

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