Monday, May 23, 2022

Report: Saliba appearance bonus to cause Arsenal legal headache?

According to L’Equipe, Saint-Etienne will be due a €2.5 million bonus payment from Arsenal if William Saliba features in the delayed Coupe de France final versus PSG.

While the Ligue 1 season was cancelled at the end of April and the title subsequently awarded to PSG, it sounds as though there’s a determination to play the cup final behind closed doors before the Parc des Princes giants resume their Champions League campaign in August.

The problem for the Ligue 1 club is that Arsenal have to agree to the defender extending his loan agreement to that date and it seems very unlikely we’ll do that given the bonus clause will be triggered by the centre-back making a 17th start of the season. As things stand, he’s made 16 starts and one appearance as a sub.

Yes, 17 starts does sound like a random number of games.

As relayed by Get France Football News, alongside a Champions League qualification clause (also worth €2.5 million), it was Arsenal who stipulated an appearance-based incentive during negotiations last summer because they wanted assurances their new big-money signing would get game minutes this season. Apparently we said we’d pay up if he hit 30 starts but reserved a right to veto the player featuring twice a week.

Saint-Etienne thought that was daft and bartered us down to agreeing to pay the bonus if he started a third of their games. Had the season reached it’s originally intended conclusion, that would have totalled 52 games. Hence the target being 17 games for Saliba.

As things stand, Saliba has started a higher proportion of Saint-Étienne’s games than needed (39% of 41 games), but as you can imagine, Arsenal will likely look to weasel out on a technicality. L’Equipe predicts legal teams could get involved.

Quite what Saliba makes of the situation is anyone’s guess.

The 19-year-old stands to miss out on a cup final with his boyhood club if recalled by us on 1 July and, worse still, under FIFA rules he won’t be able to feature for Arsenal until the new season. Presumably, we’ll either send him off on his holidays or ask him to start a pre-season training programme.

It’s possible we’ll take the bonus on the chin (LOL) and let him play, but can you imagine what would happen if he got injured?

Anyway, it all seems unnecessarily complicated, but there we go, it’s Arsenal. This is how we roll these days.

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These deals are dubious to say the least. Don Raul is a scam. He can’t even do his job properly and no one to question his decisions. My beloved team is in disarray. Come rain or sunshine. I still love the Arsenal.


fuck that. bring him back.

Arsene's Zip

What, and have him play his first game for us full of resentment at missing a cup final for his boyhood club?


Chelsea are blocking Timo Werner from playing in the CL for Leipzig. Reason being they don’t want to risk him getting injured. Our players get injured in training. Why risk them playing for another team


LOL! The hits just keep on coming at the moment. I do miss the days when we weren’t constantly in the media over the mismanagement of our club. People used to refer to Arsenal as a prime example of how a top football club should function.

Niall Shannon

Is it not possible to extend the loan but remove the bonus clause as it wasn’t met within the initial time of the loan?

John C

Don’t start making sensible suggestions, they’re no longer welcome here

Niall Shannon

I understand… I shall stay away from now on haha


Is the right answer provided he’s match fit.

Arsene's Coat

Really seems like a non-issue. Should both parties seek an agreement to extend the loan, Saint Etienne will probably have to agree to scrap that clause. Otherwise it’s like going to the shop, grabbing a Snickers and asking the cashier to pay you for it.

Gezzy Boy

I would guess that St. Etienne care more about the 2.5m than having him for one more game, so in any extension negotiations they’ll argue that the spirit of the original clause was met and so it should stand. They have no leverage though, unless the player really, really wants to play (but that could also work against them if they prevent that by insisting on the $).

Unsung Davis

Because of a global pandemic that affected us too. Not the Arsenal way my friend, it may be the Kroenke way but not the Arsenal way


Don’t want to see him get injured and it seems like we could sure use defensive options right now. But not being allowed to play a final with your boyhood club? That’d be a rough start with a new club. Really rough.
I’d have a conversation with Saliba, and if he really wants this one try a talk with S-E to forgive the payment in exchange for letting him stay on for it.


You’d think logic will prevail. We’ll let him play if the bonus isn’t triggered. Can’t take a cup final away from the lad. We have about 50 CB’s in the squad these days too, so it’s not like we couldn’t handle an injury…


Or you know, the two clubs could make an agreement whereby Arsenal don’t have to pay the bonus money and Saliba can play for Saint Etienne in the cup final? Everybody wins then.

Mark Thompson

Surely the fee to extend the loan should just cost 2.5mil (i.e. nothing). The issue of injuries not withstanding that would be fair to both clubs and the lad I’d say.
(edit typo if admin wanna just approve this that is cool!)


More mess and confusion, then. Today’s article by Andrew (“Good news, bad news…”) was the best I’ve ever read on this website. If you want to know just why this club is in such a god-awful mess then just read it. At Arsenal it looks like it’s a case of “When the cat’s away the mice will play”. With Stan and his son absent and uninterested our friends in senior management are carving up the pie to suit themselves. The tragic thing is, of course, the losers are use fans. This selfish and incompetent club business management translates into underachievement… Read more »

Cygans Parting

Sorry to be pedantic Mr. Allen but PSG play at Le Parc Des Princes not the Stade de France.


Is 17 games half a season in France? It would make sense if the league has 18 clubs
and no, I couldn’t be bothered to look it up


The article literally explains the number.

Couldn’t have been bothered to read the whole thing I guess.


He may be a talented young player but given a few months at Arsenal he will become an overpaid, underachieving drain on resources like everyone else at the club..

Naked Cygan

Arsenal is on a self destructive mission. Next we will hear that our keeper Martinez was attacked by squirrels outside his house. His left had is infected, and he will only be out for 5 weeks. In other news, Guendouzie was arrested for shoplifting in poundland wearing a Brighton shirt, and Mustafi got in a fight we the owner of the local kebab shop.


Wow life is so complicated supporting our beloved club.


As far as I can see Raul’s impact has been to hire Emery and force Mislintat out, while organising ridiculously complicated and expensive deals with either personal-friend agents or expensive 3rd parties. Not a great start buddy.

Me from Here

How can Arsenal become so dysfunctional? We tried to become a modern club but we have only regressed since Wenger left. Arsenal needs a complete reset starting at the top but I don’t know how realistic it is to achieve this. All these quick fixes to get to UCL will not work. Even if we somehow get lucky, I don’t think this hierarchy will take Arsenal to the next level.

The Spoon

Torn, with our injury luck last thing we want is the one shining hope to break his leg and be out for a season! Plus be nice to have him settle in with the squad for as long as possible. However the only arsenal player to get a potentially get a medal this season, and probably for the next few seasons!


Let him play, we might actually get a winner come into the club. Those worried about injury, the riskiest place to be is at Arsenal anyway, he’s safer in France


It’s truly amazing just how badly this club is administered. What a clusterfuck we’ve become.

Giuseppe Hovno

We are all worried about arsenal’s contract situations, but let’s pick our battles – this one ain’t it. This was not an unreasonable contract to agree to and it’s just now become complicated as a result of a pandemic. Nothing to see here, move along.

Bai Blagoi

Saint-Etienne have to appoint Kia Joorabchain as their agent, then we will surely pay.


this sounds like the emi martinez april fools story hahah!

Thierry Bergkamp (non negotiable)

If the boy doesn’t get to play, that would be fucked up


“If” he gets injured? Of course you meant to say “when” he gets injured, right?


If they want him to play the final, they have to agree to waive the bonus. Otherwise we won’t agree to extend the loan. Simples?


This is so easy, SE can agree to waive counting this game towards the bonus and we can agree to extend the loan on that basis. If SE isn’t willing to do that and wants us to let him play *and* pay them 2.5 million quid for it, they can fuck right off, and if he’s upset he can take it up with them, not us.


Wait, so we loaned him to them but WE are paying them if they play him more?
Surely they should be paying us?

I can’t even with this team.


Does seem odd with this one. Sure we’ve been burned loaning players out that sat and rotted on the bench, but it was pretty guaranteed he was going to play there anyway.


Isn’t S E being greedy in this whole case?
Simplified= cancel the payment and have him for your cup final. Everyone goes home happy.

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