Football

Guendouzi and Arteta’s plans differ, as Arsenal loanee speaks out


Matteo Guendouzi’s future at Arsenal is far from over, according to the midfielder, who is on loan at Hertha Berlin.

The 21-year-old fell out with with Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta last season and was loaned to the Bundesliga side in October.

Guendouzi was hoping to use his time in the Bundesliga to put himself back into Arteta’s thinking at Arsenal.

The 21-year-old has gone on the make 19 league appearances for the Bundesliga side, scoring twice. He has been a regular for Pal Dardai, but the Berlin boss has been critical of the youngster.

“He is a young player,” he said. “It’s like he’s in puberty sometimes, rebellious. You have to know where the limit is. He has to learn, learn like a beast.”

Guendouzi though remains keen to return to London and restart his Gunners career.

Asked by France Football if his Arsenal career was over, Guendouzi said: “Not at all. I am focused on my season at Hertha Berlin.

“Then, we will have a meeting with my entourage and the people of the club to ask and discuss the future. I am still an Arsenal player. This summer will be decisive.”

 

 

Guendouzi’s feelings seem out of line with Arteta’s thoughts in London though.

Arteta is apparently planning on life without the Frenchman long-term at Arsenal.

As per Football Insider, Guendouzi is “not expected to play for Arsenal again as the club prepare to offload him for £25million this summer”.

A source told the website recently that “Arteta has made it clear Guendouzi is not part of his plans for next season” and that is “regardless of how he performs” on loan this season.

The club are even reported to have knocked £5m off their asking price with it “slashed to £25m” if Hertha want to make the move permanent in the summer.

The Frenchman will enter the final 12 months of his contract in July.


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Rio hails Arsenal starlet

Meanwhile, Rio Ferdinand admits he “loves” to watch Emile Smith Rowe play football.

Smith Rowe has been in fine form since breaking into the Arsenal first team late last year. He’s earned plenty of plaudits for his style and ability in and around the penalty area.

The 20-year-old was labelled a “huge breath of fresh air” for the Gunners by Gareth Southgate during an interview late last month. That has led to calls from Mikel Arteta for the youngster to secure a call-up to the England squad.

However, he is instead been named in the Under-21s – fitting reward for his progress.

With two goals and six assists to his name from 22 appearances, Smith Rowe has certainly caught the eye.

Indeed, Ferdinand claims the player is really pleasing on the eye and reckons he’ll enjoy a long and successful career with Arsenal.

He told his YouTube channel: “I love him. I have to say, I love him; I love the way he plays. When [Martin] Odegaard came in, I was a little worried.

“Would the manager play him in the same team? But he’s come in, and the way he’s played this season, there’s sometimes even that cheekiness about the way he plays.

“I said this a while ago that he could have played in the era of Wenger, the way he plays football.

“He’s been a breath of fresh air and a big positive under Arteta. I think [Bukayo] Saka’s obviously been the standout young gun that’s come in, but he’s not far behind. And for the future, I think it’s very, very bright for him.”

READ MORE: Aubameyang ‘angered’ by Arteta punishment, but squad supports boss

 





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