Arsenal have made their first significant sale of the summer with the departure of Joe Willock to Newcastle, for a fee believed to be £20m, rising as high as £25m with various clauses.

The 21-year-old spent the second half of last season at St James’ Park, and was crowned Premier League Player of the Month in May after a remarkable goalscoring streak that saw him hit the net in seven successive games.

Joe joined the Gunners as a kid and came up through the Hale End academy to make his first team debut on September 20th 2017 in an EFL Cup win over Doncaster.

In total, he made 78 appearances, playing under three different managers and one caretaker manager, scoring 11 goals in red and white.

Arsenal have struggled to sell players during this transfer window, and there may have been others we’d have preferred to move on ahead of Willock, but given there was a substantive offer from Newcastle, including a six-year deal for the midfielder, there wasn’t much choice but to accept.

Reflecting on the deal, Steve Bruce said: “We had to be patient but it was worth the wait. 

“Where else can you find a 21-year-old who scored seven on the trot [on loan last season] and plays like him? Fair play to everyone to get it done.”

Best of luck Joe, keep up that scoring – especially against Sp*rs – but not against us if you wouldn’t mind. Thanks!

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Tucker

All the best of luck for 36 games a season fella

Walter White

No sell-on clause?

Mesut O’Neill

Hopefully & also a buy back clause, but knowing Arsenal doubtful.

Goonerink

Technically illegal in the prem I think

Sancheezy

I forgot what podcast but I think there’s a sell-on clause inserted in his contract but it’s only applicable to leagues outside the league I believe.

Salah

Bad Business. I think Arteta and Edu will be sacked for this before the end of the year.

Kostas

For the Arsenal bad business means: Letting stars run down contracts.
Offering Chelsea pensionists long term contracts.
Giving playing minutes to proven flops instead of talents.

Hence this was Not So Bad Business.

If we were about to buy an ex loanee that scored for us 7 EPL in a row and is homegrown, the price would have been 3 times more.

Daveo

So it’s just below average business then (although technically it definitely falls under your 3rd point)? I guess it’s an improvement… Well done Edu, you only partially cocked this one up.

Kostas

Well compared to Nelson and Nketiah who rot on the abyss yeah at least we sold him for some actual money.

Not been able to generate market for the above is laughable and depressing at the same time.

truj

Are we loosers?

Kostas

We are not winners – at the time being at least

cannon and ball and arse'n'all

The nuances of this sale are similar to the sale of Emi Martinez vs keeping Leno. We could sell Martinez, a player who would not sign a new contract unless he was guaranteed games, but we could not sell Leno due to his high wages. So we could have kept Martinez on the books and not played him and lost him for nothing when his contract ran out, or we could sell him after a good run of performances when his stock was high. Same deal with Willock. He would not have played this season and his value would have… Read more »

Little bit sharpness

Feels a little cheap, one we might regret again

Daveo

*will

Bleeding gums murphy

Wish the not so young lad well. Very much doubt we will regret it. 25 million is fantastic business. First time we ain’t been on receiving end of a mugging for years.

Rob

We sold him low… It’s covid, prices are cheap. He’s home grown academy and English. This will be a mistake when Man City buy him in 2 years for 60+ million.

goonerrah

If he stays healthy, I bet he scores 12+ goals this season.

Pat Fried Rice with Egg

I wouldn’t put money on that considering he scored 11 in 78 for us.

That’s doubling his total tally in a single season.

Peter Story Teller

Seems a pity! Joe has something about him but Arteta doesn’t appear to see it and would rather buy crap goalkeepers than keep young homegrown talent to nuture!

Teta's cult of personality

A project manager who isn’t interested in projects. Even Josep in his early Barca years was more appreciative of the standout academy talents.

The madman actually went with Pique, Busquets and Pedro over established veterans

A kealy

If the money helps us buy Ødegaard it’s a good deal. Best of luck to Joe and hope he has a good career

Thierry Bergkamp (non negotiable)

There’s more important positions to think about before Ødegaard

Daveo

Disagree. We’re desperate for another technical attacking option particularly now Willock is gone too. More important than a CM or RB IMO. Without that I don’t see us as having much chance at getting into Europe. A ESR injury would mean a complete disaster – basically Willian would be our AM…[gulp…]

Dave

Willock is not technical. That’s why he’s gone.

Daveo

I see you focussed on the least important part of my comment. But I’ll go there. Sure he isn’t a super technical player, but he provides many other things we just don’t have in this squad. No one makes runs like him. No one gets into his spaces. No one scores his goals from midfield. The fact we cannot utilise that is squarely on the coach.

Fatgooner

A good deal for the player and the club.

Willock had been given enough chances at Arsenal but had never established himself. He was only ever going to be a bit-part player at the club. The move to Newcastle gives him a chance to build a proper Premier-League career. And this money allows us to invest in the players we need before the window shuts.

Sadly, it looks like we’ll be stuck with some of the really awful players for the coming season.

Kostas

I am not sure that he was given enough chances. He was played at the wings under MA.
He is a hard working, fast strong and dynamic midfielder who can score goals.

He could be a plan b if we played counter attacking football. Given our current status we should deploy this tactic more frequently

Daveo

100%.

Fatgooner

He played 40 games (most as substitute, fair enough). He had his chances. The quality counterattacking player needs to be bought.

Daveo

Wait what?! We need a quality counter attacking football, but we just let an impressive one that bleeds red-and-white go and that has proven himself in the EPL. Yeah, that sounds like the Arsenal way…lol.

Canadagoon

*78 games

Simon

Do remember he’s going to Newcastle. So if he was as good as people are making out and saying the club are idiots, consider that fact. I’m sure a bigger club than Newcastle would have come in for him at that price if they thought he was worth it. Clubs scout other clubs so closely and given his impressive scoring run last year there must be a reason it’s odd we didn’t want him and neither did another ‘big’ club.

Toure Motors

Less goals and creativity in our squad after he’s left. More pressure on ESR and Saka to continuously play and perform to a high level. Wish him well but I think we might regret this decision

A Different George

This is a good deal for everyone. Joe will have, I think, a good career as an important player for Newcastle or similar clubs. He would be fine as a squad player for Arsenal, but no one can really believe he would start in a team contending for a Champions League place.

pound4pound

Good deal imo. Before Joe went on his scoring rampage, I think most fans would’ve been happy with the thought of getting 20-25M for a young player who fits Newcastle’s style of play better than ours. Especially in this down market. I think he’s a capable scorer, but last year was a 2-month aberration.

If you want to sell players for good money, it’s going to be from players that everyone values – including Arsenal. It’s painful but necessary, and I’m glad we might finally be getting better at it.

Pete Plum

I would have been happy to be fair, but thats because I didn’t know how much better he would play in the 8 position. Some players do go on never to be releated hot streaks its true, but I think he’s written off too lightly because a) his run of form was only stopped by the season ending b) we never tried him that way in the prem c) hes a home grown player.

Rocky07

I understand this is not a popular sale, never nice to see a good academy player sold but as was pointed out in a post a few weeks ago, Joe just doesn’t fit Arteta’ game plan. £20 mill towards a creative midfielder will be good. You can’t ignore Joe was not promised regular game time, while with us he might not make the match day squad on a regular basis. Newcastle is a great fit for him on a personal level. All the best Joe and a big thanks for that screamer against Liverpool last year.

Chakravo

Think it’s a good bit of business. Good luck, Joe (except against us, of course)!

Interested to hear if I am the only one who felt really uncomfortable with the title. I realize “The right to negotiate for Joe Willock’s services sold to Newcastle” doesn’t flow, but it makes me really, REALLY uncomfortable to read a sentence that says a human being was sold.

Totally possible it’s just me, in which case, I will just continue being uncomfortable. After all, cheering for the Arsenal hasn’t been an exercise in comfort the past several years!

Zenithreptile

Calm your farm

Chakravo

Eh, calm farms are no fun. I’ll keep a rowdy agricultural concern and just make sure the chickens don’t wake the neighbours too early and the cattle don’t Partey too late

Canadagoon

You could try hockey, in that sport we trade players instead of selling them 😉

Medium Mozart

Good luck, Joe Go become a bobby-dazzler!

BringBackSeaman

All good Money towards Odegaard purchase 🙂

Hurensohn

He’ll do well and by next season people will be trying to defend the transfer fee we received because “At the time that’s what he was worth”… same as Emi last season.

I’m not bothered that we’ve sold him, that was the preferred outcome for me but we’ve had our trousers pulled down again on the price. I the same people who criticise the club for Ramsey and Welbeck etc leaving for free will say what choice did we have but it’s the same mismanagement.

Hakuna Matata

There seemed 2 have been careful consideration in sending him 2 newcastle on loan. I think it worked out well 4 all those involved

Torterrier

I guess at least we no longer need to have discussions on whether he should be given a chance or not. Best of luck to him at Newcastle, he’ll be missed.

Prakhar

He should go where he will thrive.

Now to converting this Joe Willock money and some more into a transformational attacking midfielder. Come on Arsenal!

Virginia Gooner

This whole, he scored for Newcastle that means he’ll score for Arsenal is boring. He played 40 times in the PL for Arsenal scoring 1 goal. Not all players fit a club or a certain style of play and sometimes they do better when they take a step down. Good luck to him. For a great price, now over to Edu to use the money to improve the starting 11. Or spend 30million for a backup goalkeeper and further not strengthen the starting 11. You know, whatever.

Teta's cult of personality

He played 1241 mins for Arsenal in the Premier across 3 seasons between ages 18-21. 1241 minutes is equivalent to ~13.8 football matches. Most of you guys know he didn’t have much game Time(especially under Arteta) but you overlook it amyway. 1 goal and 1 Assists from CM in 13 is not that bad.

His form in Europe and the cup competitions was indicating that his shooting technique was improving.

Joe Butler-Biggs

If we didn’t attach a buy back first option or similar and/or a healthy percentage of the fee Newcastle get for him then I just will cry for a few days 😂😭

Baichung Bhutia

I think one thing this puts to rest is that we have a plan to build a core of young homegrown players.

Granit(e) hard!

Top management as usual, the squad is of course brimming with talent, goals coming from everywhere, why not sell off our goal scoring younger prospects to recoup losses on geriatrics handed over generous retirement plans in colossal cock up deals, what is there not to admire?

PEA14

I felt that Willock was not given enough chances to impress. And even if he did, he will go back straight to the bench. Remember when he went on a scoring streak when he was playing for the europa Cup, and would then be thrown straight back to the bench. For a player like him who was deemed unsuitable to the team setup , he still contribute to his fair share of goals when called upon, and he will have that type of impact when the team play to his strength like during his Newcastle loan The only consolidation is… Read more »

rugrat

don’t worry gooners… I’ve heard that Willian is the new Willock

Bryan

Azeez incoming

Francesc

Xhaka stays but willock leaves. Sad stuff

Merlin's Panini

Well, potentially we’re getting more for him than we did for Henry. If you ignore the 14 years in between it’s fantastic money.
But, seriously, I think he’ll do well there again and it happened just in time for me to slip him into my Fantasy team. It points to us bringing in an attacking midfielder because now we have no one after Smith Rowe.
We’ll only regret selling him if we have a shit season.

Magneto

Thanks for your contribution to The Arsenal, Joe, and all the best for your future.

Pete Plum

I’m really disappointed by this as hes a home grown lad and we never played him in position, and he’s shown what he can do as an 8. He never played alongside ESR or Ozil only ever replacing them. Sure we’d concede more but fucking hell we might have scored a few. “Where else can you find a 21-year-old who scored seven on the trot” says it all for me. Hope it works out for him

shokim

Good luck & all the best to you on Tyneside, Joe.

Sancheezy

May he score 2 hat tricks against the scum, United, City, Leicester and Chelski!!!

Kunz

All the best to Joe but totally gutted. Sold for 20 – 25M for a scoring midfielder in this current market? We just don’t know how to do business as a club. Can’t help feeling we have let another one slip away.

Tankard Gooner

Oh well Joe.. Most of us would have probably liked you to hang around more than a few others. Damned shame we had to make the major bucks out of you considering there’s so many more we would love to see the back of. But…could have, would have, should have is textbook hindsight material.

All the best at Newcastle Joe. You were immense for them last season, no reason you can’t carry on now. You’re a good good lad and I do wish you the best in life. Keep smashing bruv!

leon

He is much better of at Newcastle than Arsenal.
There is fuck all going on at Arsenal except a steady decline..

Teryima Adi

Congrats, Son. Continue to soar to greater heights.

Mikel’s lottery ticket

So many comments about this “dream creative midfielder” that is going to solve all our woes. Really? That to me sounds the sort of mentality of lottery players, or worse still, heavy gamblers “just one big win and everything will be solved”. In truth we are ignoring the real, foundational issues we need to address, in favour of wistfully pontificating about said dream signing as a silver bullet. Look around the actual top sides – they deliver consistent creativity, pressure and finishing even through the absence of key players … and especially in the absence of “dream creative midfielders” who… Read more »