Arsenal has a mess of issues facing them on a daily basis, so it’s not even close to the right time to start thinking about selling Matteo Guendouzi.
For the second time this year, Matteo Guendouzi has gone completely off the Arsenal grid for “internal issues.” The first time around, he’d reportedly had a training ground bust-up with Mikel Arteta, and this time around, we can assume that chokehold/slamming Neal Maupay didn’t help his fortunes.
After thriving under Unai Emery, Guendouzi was quickly pushed to the side by Mikel Arteta. The same seems to be happening now. Following a tremendous individual performance against Brighton, Guendouzi went after Maupay for the Brighton man’s inadvertent tackle of Bernd Leno.
It ended up with Guendouzi choking Maupay and Maupay landing on his backside. Not a good look, by any means, but Guendouzi was frustrated. I honestly don’t hold it against him all that much.
But Mikel Arteta does, and despite Guendouzi’s performances in the first two matches back, he was left completely out against Southampton as Granit Xhaka return to the team to hold it all together.
In the meantime, rumors of Guendouzi being sold have kicked back up again, no doubt in response to his absence against the Saints.
However, this is not the right time to start talking about a sale. Mostly because no time is a good time to start talking about a sale. We shouldn’t be selling him at all. But in this particular moment, it’s worse than ever. The midfield is battered and uncertain. Ceballos is leaving, Lucas Torreira probably is too, and while Thomas Partey could be joining, a whole bunch of coulda’s didn’t help anyone.
We need midfielders to finish this season and we need midfielders for the long-term. We can’t afford to start isolating talented young midfielders who could define the future, let alone this season. If we do want to sell him, I strongly disagree and would be livid if we did, but worry about that when the transfer window opens. Don’t remove him from the team and start shopping him around. No one wins if you do that. Certainly not us.
I understand the desire to teach. Guendouzi proved incredibly teachable in his return from the first “internal” issues. If that’s all this is, great. And that probably is all this is. I just don’t want to see the kid sold for being a kid. That’s not right.