Arsene Wenger is preparing for the start of the new season and talk of Alexis Sanchez joining Arsenal is growing increasingly likely. With Olivier Giroud carrying the majority of the team last season, the Frenchman became burdened with expectation and pressure as he led the line for most of the campaign.
However, the arrival of Sanchez could well change that and with Joel Campbell returning to the club, it seems Wenger may have some more firepower at his disposal.
There are suggestions that Campbell may be offloaded on loan once again, as Wenger aims to nurture the Costa Rica international in the right way – ensuring he does not rush the talented forward too quickly.
While there is not much wrong with the Frenchman doing that, he may be better suited to utilising the youngster in his plans for next season.
Off the back of a remarkable World Cup, Campbell took the tournament by storm as Costa Rica shook the world with their resilient performances and passionate displays – something Campbell was a huge contributor to.
He made five appearances in South America this summer, helping Costa Rica reach the quarter-final where they were out done by the Netherlands.
He completed the full ninety-minutes twice – evidence of his fitness and ability to play in blistering conditions. Giroud struggled to feature for the full game much last season and it is credit to the young 22-year-old that he can maintain himself.
Despite scoring just one goal during the tournament, a classy finish against Uruguay, Campbell was also a creator and it is quite clear he could compliment the colossal stature of Giroud in his lone role.
He created nine chances during the tournament and while Giroud is lambasted for being less than mobile in the penalty box, Campbell is the complete opposite with his flexible movement key.
He registered those chances in various areas of the pitch and that bodes well for the rapid transitional phases in play Wenger tries to adopt a system suited to Campbell’s electric pace and intelligent movement.
His neat foot-work allowed him to complete 12/21 take-ons during the tournament and his low centre of gravity more than compliments Giroud’s underrated hold-up play. For a youngster he is also very good at holding on to the ball and that was key for Costa Rica as they were under the cosh for the majority of the time in Brazil.
He was fouled ten times during his five appearances, while he committed just three in South America.
With a number of games to be played next season for the Gunners, Olivier Giroud will be an unhappy customer if he is too lead the line by himself again. In Joel Campbell, Arsene Wenger has an exciting, promising and technically brilliant striker – something the Gunners have lacked for a long time.
While a loan will hugely benefit the youngster, staying in north London will be even more beneficiary – for the club and the player.