Ramsey's departure leaves a big hole in Arsenal's midfield
Aaron Ramsey's Curse Leaves the Premier League
On Monday evening one of the worst kept secrets in football was finally confirmed, with Aaron Ramsey's impending move to Italian giants Juventus announced on social media. In moving to Turin the Welshmen ends an 11 year spell at the Emirates Stadium where he's enjoyed a lot of success, developing into one of the finest box-to-box midfielders in Europe.
His contract in North London expires at the end of the season meaning that he moves on a free transfer, which looks like a fantastic piece of business by Massimiliano Allegri as he bids to strengthen his midfield.
Arsenal on the other hand have lost one of their best players and they're getting no transfer fee in return. Losing someone of that calibre would hurt any club but to lose them on a free looks like some very poor mismanagement and planning by the Arsenal hierarchy.
Bringing someone in to replace Ramsey won't be cheap and it's going to be interesting to see how this pans out. But one thing for sure is that there's a lot of questions surrounding his departure - was it a decision made by Emery to let him go? Are Arsenal just skint and can't compete with Europe's big clubs? Or are Arsenal FC just lacking ambition? Read below for more...
Arsenal lose another key player
It's now fifteen years since Arsenal last lifted the Premier League trophy and the wait could go on for sometime. In the late 90's and early 00's the Gunners were one of the most feared teams not just in England but Europe as a whole under Arsene Wenger. But now fast forward to 2019 the club are very much going through a transitional period and it looks like their supporters are going to need a lot of patience for them to start challenging again. Over the last few they've lost a number key personnel and that trend has continued with Aaron Ramsey.
The Gunners have seen players such as Thierry Henry, Patrick Vieira, Cesc Fabregas, Emmanuel Adebayor, Samir Nasri, Robin van Persie and of course Alexis Sanchez all depart North London over the last 14 years so the question has to be asked - are they now a selling club? Arsenal always have and will be an attractive option for any footballer. They have rich history, a fantastic stadium and being based in London is a huge draw for any player - but no PL title success in 15 years shows that it's not the place to go if you want to be the very best. Even Arsenal Fan TV will admit that..
The majority of the players who've departed the Emirates have all gone on to achieve fantastic success elsewhere, so it's no surprise to see Aaron Ramsey end his 11 year stay at the club. He's been a very good player for the club and he had a close affiliation with the supporters - which was shown by his heartfelt statement surrounding his exit. He will be missed and after seeing the news of his mega money deal he's signed with Juventus - it's very easy to see why he's decided to move onto pastures new.
In moving to the Allianz Stadium the 28 year-old will reportedly pocket a jaw dropping £19.2m a year - which over the course of his 4 year contract equates to £76.8m - outrageous figures. He would've been on a lucrative contract at Arsenal but there's no way they can compete with Juventus on that front, with Mesut Ozil reportedly the clubs top earner by some distance on a massive £300k a week - this is despite the fact he struggles to get into Unai Emery's team.
Yet more mismanagement from The Gunners?
No fan ever wants to see their best players depart and unfortunately as previously mentioned, it appears to be a common theme with Arsenal. The Gunners have seen a wealth of stars depart over the last few years which really asks the question - is the mismanagement at the club really that bad? Well it appears that the answer is yes. Not just losing players of the ilk of Ramsey is shambles but allowing them to run their contract down to that stage is criminal. The Gunners knew full well that there'd be plenty of interest in his services and they've ended up losing one of their biggest assets for nothing.
It was a harsh lesson that everyone thought they had learned after the whole Alexis Sanchez saga but it appears not - instead they've lost two of their best players at cut prices. They did manage to hang onto Ozil however, but in doing so they've given him a mega contract which still has 2-and-a-half years left to run - not good when the current boss clearly doesn't fancy him. There have been some promising signs in the new Arsenal era under Unai Emery but some of the same problems remain - particularly defensively - where they've been found out time & time again.
But what won't help him is the lack of funds made available to him by the controversial Arsenal board. The relationship between the clubs hierarchy and the supporters is frosty at best, with the Gunners unable to compete with fellow big clubs both domestically and continentally on the transfer front. This January for example, Emery was only able to bring in Denis Suarez on loan from Barcelona with no money being made available for permanent transfers which is very worrying and it evidently played a major part in them losing Ramsey too.
This summer is going to be vital for the club as they bid to return not just to the Champions League (which is still possible this season) and start to challenge for the Premier League title again. They're evidently some way off in terms of quality and consistency but they do possess some top players who can make the difference, with their front two of Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang up there with the best in England. But they still have a very, very long way to go before they're capable of challenging for the league title so we could soon see more big names choose to move on from the Emirates.