A report in L’Equipe this morning (via GFFN) suggests that Matteo Guendouzi took the opportunity during an internal meeting to let it be known he wouldn’t be against leaving Arsenal this summer.

The midfielder was let off the hook by the FA for grabbing the throat of compatriot Neal Maupay during the Gunners 2-1 defeat to Brighton last weekend. It was fully expected the reprieve would see him play some part in the 2-0 win over Southampton last night, but didn’t make the squad for what Mikel Arteta called ‘squad management’.

The Arsenal boss also hinted at some internal conflict when he denied Guendouzi’s absence was a consequence of his behaviour against Brighton.

“Whatever issue we have internally, I will resolve it in a private way,” said the Spaniard. “I explained that I cannot explain and that’s it.”

The report says that the 21 year old feels he’s not fully trusted by Arteta, and the time he’s spent on the bench is a ‘regression’ in his career.

He’s started just four of the twelve Premier League games under the new manager, and reportedly has an eye on Euro 2020 (taking place in 2021).

Arsenal, for their part, would be willing to sanction a departure if the price were right, and the contractual situation is interesting too. His current deal runs out in 2022, and it’s the exact scenario Head of Football Raul Sanllehi said Arsenal had to improve on.

“I do believe that a player’s contract should never go to the last year, as a policy,” he said in 2018.

“Normally the contracts of the players are for five years. You need to have a clear idea of what you want to do with that player when he is in the third year, at the latest.”

Guendouzi signed a four deal, which means that two year point comes into play this summer. If he’s not going to sign new terms, or if the club don’t want to offer him a new contract, then a departure becomes a serious option.

Sanllehi has failed thus far to seriously improve contract management – as it stands there are still five senior players going into the final 12 months of their deals – so this will be a big test for the former Barcelona executive.

This is the second time that the Frenchman has fallen foul of Arteta from a disciplinary point of view. Earlier this season he was dropped for what was described as an ‘angry exchange’ with the boss and other coaching staff during the warm weather training trip to Dubai. Arsenal won the game he missed 4-0 against Newcastle.

Obviously stories like this can take on a life of their own, and things can get sorted as quickly as they flare up, but it does seem clear that the relationship between Guendouzi and Arteta isn’t quite 100%.

Let’s see what happens.

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Let him go.
Running around alot and not showing tactical awareness (assuming his instructions aren’t to do that) isn’t good enough. I know he’s young but he’s not changed from the day he arrived under 2 (3?) coaches.


I think letting Matteo go now would be a huge mistake.   Some of his pass metrics are right up there with some of the best players in the league. They’re fairly astonishing when you actually consider how shit this Arsenal side is, and his age. He is still so young.   He looks a bit all over the place at times, sure, but that’s largely in part to our midfield being hugely dysfunctional.   I think he’s only ever going to bet better, and IF we actually bought a very good central midfielder to sit alongside him, I think… Read more »

Olivije Žirod

He is 21 and if he wanted to grow up he already would. Let’s not forget that Lorient was happy to see his back. If we can get a good deal then we should sell. Maybe he will succeed in other clubs but I don’t believe he will with us.


No, L’orient saw his back because a lot of huge clubs were in for him and that’s what happens when super-talented youngster’s develop at smaller club.


Lorient was happy to see his back’
Get over yourself. A club like Lorient will always let players go to a big club when they get a decent fee. Unbelievably daft comment.

Olivije Žirod

He had a dispute with Lorient manager and was frozen from the team.


21 is still extremely young to write him off completely, given some of the performances he’s put in since we signed him.
Everyone was petulant at that age. Now times that by a million when you’re dealing with someone who is starting central midfield for Arsenal.
He just needs the manager to put his feet back on the ground. Some tough love will do him lots of good. Selling him wont. I dont think.


Is 21 up grown up now? ?

Artetas Assistant

Don’t just say buy a very good central midfielder, there are over 6 types of central midfielder, what kind do you want to make Matteo become a star?

In my view, he could be good as a chaotic attacking midfielder for a chaotic team, Or for Arsenal against chaotic teams. Like playing David Luiz in Attacking mid. But he might need to go to Stoke or West Ham to find his heart and level. Build a team around his heart. Or curb his exuberance and become a disciplined, masterful player and become worldclass


Great comment.
Incredibly well said.
That there is any debate about this is a head-scratcher.
Its as if Fabregas’ or Cazorlas grow on fecking trees!
Raul – not Creepy Stan – is killing this club.


He’d have better tactical awareness if he cut that hair; his peripheral vision is curly, at best.

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

Why are we even discussing news that came from L’Équipe? Most of the things they said about their national team in South Africa were utterly invented.


100% sell him. He’s good but he’s not as special as some are making out. If his stats are that good then we shouldn’t have any problem getting good money for him, use that to buy Partey or another midfielder who is going to bring something we lack in the side.


£40m+ and I’d be very happy to let him go. Likely even a little less. I can see him becoming the new Denilson; can do lots of things okay, but nothing exceptionally. And though maybe not all these stories are true, there’s never this much smoke without fire- his attitude seems awful.

Micky Tayrian

If you think guendozi can fetch over 40 mill especially in the current climate I’m obviously missing something


Just don’t think there’s going to be this Great Resetting that everyone seems to expect. Short term, sure, but I envisage the ‘bounce back’ being pretty immediate. Naive perhaps but just my opinion! I can absolutely see PSG looking at him for £30m or so.

Maul Person

Why would you think anyone would come in for Guendouzi for £40m?!


Wow so many casual fans on this site.


The most important thing here for Matteo is to ensure that the door does not slam against his slender buttocks on the way out.

Artetas Assistant

I think we need dogs like Matteo. They could bite you when young and insecure , but if you keep them, they’ll kill for you.

Artetas Assistant

He could be the new Ray Parlour ?

Artetas Assistant

He just barks, he doesn’t actually bite


We should sell him if we could get 40millions for him with all the clauses. He has the potential limit from yaya toure to elneny.


Wow! I’ll be shocked if a club paid more than £20 million for Guendozi. He’s an okay player that likes to run amok. Nothing else.

Reality check

I like him, he’s got character but he’s one of those players that we got at the wrong age. He’s not a Balotelli but It’s very much like RVP situation, troubled early on but calmed down as he grew up. A fully developed 28 year old Guendouzi will be a best if he continues to develop to his full potential. Question is, is someone willing to be patient enough to put up with him?

Artetas Assistant

Exactly. I think Mikel is handling it right and we can get a Mastered Matteo soon if he persists. If your wild young Rottweiler barks at you, toss him in the ice. Then tell him what you will and won’t accept. End of the day you still need loyal Rotts in your Dog pack

Artetas Assistant

Loyal rotts Royar lotts

Mentally Drained Gooner

Arsenal need to be patient with him. He is a proper prospect. Rather take a risk on him than his doppelganger

Maul Person

What’s his best position? And is he playing it?
What are his strengths?

santi's thigh grab

Great questions. No one knows. I trust Arteta’s judgement in these matters.


I’d say his strenghts are ball recovery, pace, aggression and range of passing. Weaknesses are lack of experience, temperament, tackles too wildly and a propensity to act like a twat. Most of the strengths are what we need in midfield and most of the weaknesses can be resolved with experience and patience. Apart from the twat bit, that’s down to him. Personally I’d like him to stay, but I think it will be determined as much by the contract situation as anything else. If he doesn’t re-sign and a good offer comes in, it’ll be goodbye.

Artetas Assistant

Maybe as a Pirlo in attacking midfield ? He’ll be tasked only with turning and shooting or playing sideways passes into the wings. Could work against the Burnley’s of this world


Sad to hear. There’s a player in there. And I for one don’t mind Matteo’s saltiness. He just needs to learn to channel it. If he leaked this out then it’s petulant of him. I hope Arteta can sort it out and get him onside.

Artetas Assistant

Exactly’Petulant’. Initially (around the Dubai trip)He came in with anger to take stuff and Mikel banged him a gavel on his head. Now he just needs his strengths appreciated and his head petted by his master.


Matteo is a character.
Competitive and passionate and maybe a bit of a j*ck*as.
We need more of that.


How many jackasses are there at Liverpool and Man City?


About 25 each.


Both sides have about 30 players. Who have you excluded?


A lot but hidden behind subtlety

Reality check

Jackass would be being polite, Robertson at pool and fernandino are proper c**ts. Van dijk is dirty as phuk and also a bit of a c**t.

Artetas Assistant

Juergen Klopp is Jackass No 1
His mad Brazilian keeper

Pep is a more professional looking crazeman


He’s a lot more jackass than he is competitive or compassionate. Don’t know how many competitive midfielders go a 90min game without making a single tackle, I don’t know how many compassionate people brag to their colleagues that they make more money than them.


That kind of talk goes on on the pitch all the time. Wives, mums, sister’s, salaries, looks, ability…you name it. Part of the game.


You think football games are actually little Guy Ritchie movies?


He was misquoted. He was saying “Maupay” not “More Pay”.


Excellent, sir!

Arsenal’s Defense

You know who this kid reminds me of? Roy Keane. He is still very young and very raw as a footballer. There is a top player in there if properly managed. There is a leader in there if his saltiness is properly channeled. He needs the right environment to meet his potential. Is Arsenal the right environment for him? That, I don’t know

Dave cee

Seriously? Arsenal is a huge club and this a kid with no left foot and an attitude.
I like him, don’t get me wrong, but if he isn’t buying into what Arteta is selling them he ain’t worth the bother.


Is it just me or does that seem to be a lot of smoke around this kid’s behaviour and general attitude? Anyone would think we’re talking about someone who’s actually proved how talented he is e.g. Pogba. But no, this is about a KID who has so far in his Arsenal career produced 2 assists and 0 goals. I’ll say that one more time for those at the back, 2 assists and ZERO goals. Let him go as he’s clearly not buying into Arteta’s vision

The Spoon

He’s young and French, he’s all attitude! If Arteta can work with him and turn his attitude into something positive he can be a great player I think. Like all kids, just needs some guidance and I think Arteta can provide that. The big question will he learn from this, take it on the chin and move on, or will he sulk and feel bullied. That’ll make the decision on whether he stays or goes I imagine.

Timorous Me

It’s felt to me for some time that Guendouzi was relied on too much, too soon by Emery. Some of that was necessity, some of it was Emery’s negative tactics. And it’s not like Guendouzi was bad–at times he was quite impressive for a player of his age. But I’ve worried that he grew too content and didn’t develop as he could have despite all the opportunities he got under Emery.   Now Arteta has different, more ambitious plans tactically and sees that Guendouzi is actually kind of limited as a player–and it does seem like the team has been… Read more »

santi's thigh grab

The rap on Guendouzi when he was leaving Lorient was he was super confident about his abilities and in his mind he was going to be a top football player. If you disagreed with that or challenged that assumption by pointing out areas of improvement, he was done with you as a coach, this was from his coach at Lorient. He lacks maturity, he’s over confident and his erratic positioning doesn’t build stability in the squad. Manager wants one thing and he wants another. Let him go for whatever we can get, it’s about team not about sideshow Bob.


I believe the call up to the French national team did more harm than good. He needs to mature and that will only come with playing time, but his performances have to back that up. The kid obviously has skills. The way he protects the ball and lets it run across his body is very Pirloesque. His range of passing is not great, but he does have an eye for a pass. I would love to see him play further up to alleviate his defensive duties.   I wonder if a loan deal can work for both parties. He’ll get… Read more »



Lady Gooner

Mmmh i feel like there is a player there. He has a big personality, lots of fight and resolve, something that I feel lacks in a lot of Arsenal players. Too many of our players are “soft”. I think Arteta should have or still try to channel that energy he has and use it for good, sometimes it will go wrong as it tends to with that type of player but its worth all the other times it comes through. I think he will be another in one of the few young players at Arsenal that seemed like they had… Read more »


A world beater?! Calm down. Have you see anything from him thus far in his career that would suggest that? Because I haven’t. Does he control our midfield and dictate the tempo – no. Is he contributing with goals – no. Assists galore – no. Someone tell me what he’s bringing to the table apart from drama


The things you’re asking of him are more associated with 8s than 6s, and that’s part of Guendouzi’s issue, he’s neither fish nor fowl. If you were talking about attributes for defensive midfielders (tackles, intercepts, aerial duels, pressing actions) you’d get a similar result. He’s got good passing accuracy, can keep the ball and can get around the pitch, but that’s not enough at this level. Long term, he needs more either going forwards or backwards.

Ya gooner

He takes way too long to pass the ball. Good dribbler and can burst but that’s useless if he overplays it and passes sideways/backwards or loses the ball


He needs to work on lots of elements of his game. He has time on his side, but the club does not. Given that we have a lot of young players already, selling him to make way for the real deal makes sense.


When we signed Guendouzi I’m sure selling him early on for a big profit was one of the scenarios we envisioned and in pre-COVID times I think this could suit everyone perfectly. He’s a talented if inconsistent player but issues on and off the pitch (his premature signage to the Watford fans, anyone?) have made his position tenuous. He clearly has ability but hasn’t really convinced as a 6 or as an 8 yet for different reasons. The result is a highly saleable asset, potentially valuable to others but disposable for us.

Cygans Parting

Well well. Raul trying to offload a player that we can make a healthy profit on or Matteo really agitating for a move or a much improved contract???….. negotiation is always a tricky thing.

Eddie Hoyte

Keep massive error prone Xhaka for four years, awarded a new contract to error maestro David Luiz, but planning on let our youngest brightest midfielder go because of attitude problem. I mean not all of us can be royalty. You can’t really expect every young player to be perfect. Matteo has a lot ahead of him, he’s the only aggressive, bull headed player we have who doesn’t take shit, while also being the most gentlest player if he chooses to be, (As he showed by crying when Danny Welbeck got that horrific injury in the Europa league, and how much… Read more »


Guendo is not any less error prone than Xhaka only you’re wearing guendo-colloured spectacles. “Our youngest, brightest midfielder…” if that is the case then we’re in deep shit. The Boy has a lot of potential that is not being realized and largely due to him thinking he’s a world best young midfielder already which he is not. And part of the problem are Arsenal fans which are way to quick to make star out of a young player without at least waiting for a second season to see what he’ll turn into.   FFS, Bellerin is deemed divine player by… Read more »

Eddie Hoyte

What were you expecting when he constantly plays with deep shit players?? He’s a kid FFS!!
Where will the growth come from? Who’s there for him to follow?
You really talk as though the players you have alongside you doesn’t influence your growth. SMH


I am not expecting anything rather saying that he’s got attitude problem which prevents him to grow.
It is one thing having none to look up to and completely other is thinking that you don’t need to learn anything since you’ve acomplished already.
BTW “Massive error prone” Xhaka at the moment is indispensable in our midfield if we are to win any points. Just have a look at our points tally with and without him since Arteta took over.

Dr. kNOw

And since Xhaka joined, which at the time was to resolve the Cazorla Absence and General Midfield Conundrum, Arsenal’s midfield has imploded, resulting in a Europa League Team.

Xhaka is the best we’ve got, but he’s at the centre of the squad-level problem. He provides the structure, but is – crucially – utterly flawed, and – worse – without the right partner to get the best out of him or the unit.

The truth is, even he won’t survive the midfield overhaul.


Xhaka and Guendouzi are different characters therefore they are managed differently.

Matteo looks like a guy who wants it rough in order to grow. He has to react positively under this pressure and channel his rage into developing more.

Same approach with AMN.

Artetas Assistant

Very good point. Matteo needs breaking-in


I don’t think that running around boasting about his wages when the team were being outplayed by Brighton would have endeared himself to Arteta. I wouldn’t shed tears if we let him go.

Artetas Assistant

I’m not sure the intention behind it is bad. He was riling up the other guys, he needs to become grown at it .


I like him and have great faith in him becoming a really useful player but if he wants to go then let him go. I hope we get a good price for him.


We should get that money. Then get the kind of profile player which we all want on FIFA game.

Get strong and tall inteceptor and tackler who makes simple passes and covers defense. No more elaborate playmaker at cost of very positional basics at the DM.


Mediocre. Simply not at the required level – take £10-15M and let him play at somewhere like West Ham.
We need players that can influence/run games. I haven’t seen that at all from him.

Mark richardson

I just remember the character and passion he showed, during one of his first few matches. Slamming his fists on the turf at halfway line, we’ve missed it, but needs to back it up with a product on the pitch. He has huge potential.


Petulant Child, Good Riddance


Guys just give him a break. He’s exactly the type of bastard we need in our team. He’s come from Ligue 2 and just 21. Only way is up for him


There are only a few teams in the world that’s “up” from the Arsenal. So no, he has a good chance of falling way down, unless he improves his attitude.


If thats true, then he needs to wake up to himself and realise how far he’s come.

Honestly wish we had Coquelin around still. That guys blood was pouring with Arsenal DNA and something we haven’t seen in a long time. Kicking advertising boards and celebrating every single goal like he’d scored it himself. He knew it was a privilege to play for Arsenals midfield.


This is a pretty good comparison actually.


Coquelin was miles better than Torreira to be honest


Did he not bust his contract in his previous club to come here? Seems the same is happening now as someone predicted back then. That thing at the end of last game was probably pre-planned.


Don’t remember hearing anything about that at all. Like any player from Lorient who is approached by a big club, he gets sold Loriwnt get a decent fee.


If you allow a player to undermine the manager then you’re finished, I like Matteo even if some of his antics grate, but if by selling him it meant we had the finance to get Partey and Upamencano then I’d sign up for that.

Artetas Assistant

Sounds more like The player is begging the manager to rub his head


Jesus fucking Christ this fanbase.
He’s 21. He’s not supposed to “be at the required level” or “control the midfield”.
Most kids his age get an appearance here and there – he’s s been a first team regular for two years.
He’s got an edge and he’s a character, sure.
There are things he should improve, sure.
But I’ll never understand “fans” who give up on a 21-year old.


The fact that he’s been a first team regular even though he’s not “at the required level” and can’t “control the midfield” is more of a damning indictment of the club than an endorsement of the player. He can definitely improve technically and mentality and I actually expect he will improve. But cashing in now and putting those funds towards a midfielder that is all those things already makes a lot of sense given where the squad is at.


Yeah I can see the logic in a sale too (although I’d rather lose Torreira than Guendouzi). It’s just… some of the reactionary stuff you read on here is disappointing.
These youngsters, especially the ones who’ve left their home countries to play for The Arsenal, need a lot of patience.
There’s definitely an elite player in there: https://twitter.com/SemperFiArsenal/status/1275806152949809153

Drogheda gunner

Totally agree mate, he’s 21 and raw with a bit of bite which I like. I think he has a good future and he’d be the last centre mid that I’d get rid of. The chap gets ridiculed for snapping at an opponent who intentionally injured a team mate. I applaud the passion.

Arsene's Coat

I like the lad. He has drive and at times feels like he’s the only one trying to break the dysfunctional rhythm we fall into so often. It does seem like Arsenal are too polite a team for him or he’s too rude for Arsenal and I’m not sure who should change to accomodate whom. Either way, he’s a promising young player and given the current contracts situation (the Arsenal way, it seems) we should perhaps do our best not to disrupt the team any further and guide Matteo towards channeling his aggressiveness in the sole interest of kicking ass… Read more »

Olivije Žirod

I will say just this. If any other current Arsenal youngster who plays in the first team got 82 games in their best position, do you think they would do better or worse? I think every single one of them would progress much more than Guendouzi did in the last 2 years.


Or alternatively, you could ask why none of our other youngsters his age have got the same amount of games as him? I mean the obvious answer is he’s better than them but why look for the obvious answer when you want to make a point about a player you don’t like.

Olivije Žirod

Most of the chances he got were under Emery. I think he only started 6 league games since Emery left.


We have to learn who and how to sell well again. If we can get decent fee for him, we should do it, even if he developes to worlbeater later in a better team. I don’t have a clue how good of a player he can be in future or would be at moment in a better team with functioning midfield. I just know that at moment our midfield is not working, is made out of parts that don’t fit at all, he is one of those misfit parts, and he is the one we can get some money for.… Read more »

John C

Exactly, if the money’s right and helps us improve the team then sell.
It’s perfectly plausible to sell your best player and get better threw shrewd team building, look at Liverpool after they sold Coutinho.
Conversely Aubameyang is our best player and it’s arguable that we’re worse now than before we got him

John C

through not threw*


It’s a shame because it looked like there was real potential after the North London Derby. However, get a decent price for him and bring in someone of quality.

Est Ldn

I’m curious how much of this fan dislike for Guendouzi comes from the fact Arteta is having issues with him and not the reality of his performances at Arsenal. As people have said, there is high quality player in him which needs management. The talk on here that he doesn’t do anything is weird and Arteta trumpeting in my opinion.   Last season and the early part of this season, he was the only one making an effort, he changed the game against Spurs and Villa i seem to recall; both matches where we were passengers and was our best… Read more »


Great post.

MG needs to be properly managed to enable us to get the best out of him. He’s still a kid and will mature in time. We should get rid of Sideshow Bob instead: he IS a waste of time.


I am trying to think what do Guendouzi do well and the answer is running around a lot. But it’s pointless when he is poor at everything else. His passing isn’t great with poor passing range overall, his tackles are average, he lingers on the ball too much for very little gain. He tries to draw foul but in EPL that doesn’t get him much and he end up getting run over. He is not that strong to hold off opponents. For a runner he is not that quick nor can he dribble much. He just doesn’t have talent to… Read more »


He’s only 21 m8. I believe he still has time to improve as a footballer?

Uba Ngenegbo

At this time, Gwen is probably at 85% of his ceiling. I will take £20 million for him in a heartbeat.


Guendouzi is so talented. I think it could be a huge mistake if we let him go. If it was upwards of $50 mil, and we re-invested well, it could make sense, but it’s a risky move.


He should be retained. At least he has bottle / fire in him unlike most of the team. Viera was equally volatile and see how he developed. It’s all about Arteta and his management skills plus the young man working hard. To sell is defeatist especially given only Torreira is worth a midfield place.


Losing Matteo Guendouzi would be a catastrophe. I know some fans are ambivalent and that he has divided opinion. I think you have to look at the context . It’s a sorry indictment of the club that we can’t handle him. Winners have personality. Brady had Alan Ball to put an arm round him, Vieira had Adams, Platt et al , Fabregas had the Invincibles. Who has Matteo had?Given his age, the level he came from and the turbulent times at Arsenal he has been a revelation. It can’t be easy being a winner and a personality in a winner/personality… Read more »

Liam Rhys

We don’t need jackass’s in central midfield. We need players who track the opposition when we don’t have the ball and score or create goals when we do. Guendouzi does neither


A big time Charlie. Runs around a lot and delivers very. Take whatever we can and bin him off.


Sell him and insert both a buy back clause and a sell on clause. If he became more mature, we buy him back, if he doesnt, at least we still make a future sales profit


Good riddance. Never understood the hype around him. People see character in him I see a petulant weakling who brings nothing to the table. Wow he’s so tidy with his passing! There are maybe 200 players you could slot in and do the same job. He does nothing going forward, weak on the ball, crying on the pitch all game. He’s basically a younger El Neny. Says a lot aabout this club that there’s immense hype around an average player

Olivije Žirod

Elneny is technically much more limited but in the same time he is twice as smarter as Guendouzi if we are honest.


He should be loaned out next year. Guendouzi doesn’t have the (footballing) maturity to play for Arsenal yet.


Guendouzi has talent and enthusiasm. He also has some worrying characteristics. Which side takes over is the question.