The boos that rang out upon the announcement that Arsene Wenger was taking off Joel Campbell against Swansea were deafening.
Joel Campbell had been our only bright spark against the Swans, scoring the first goal and continuing to threaten until he was taken off. Therefore, when the boss decided to sub him and not the struggling Alexis Sanchez in favour of Danny Welbeck, the choice was met with anger and confusion.
Speaking after the match, Wenger tried to explain why he’d taken the forward off.
“Campbell hasn’t played for a while and he started to tire,” he said.
“He played against a very young left back and I thought Welbeck could give him some problems with his runs in behind. These kinds of decisions don’t mean that Campbell did badly. I think he did quite well tonight. I also think that there was room on that flank to be very dangerous.”
Although Wenger claims Campbell was tired, the look on the 23-year-old’s face reflected how the fans were feeling. He seemed confused and a little put-out. It seemed like an odd decision considering how poorly Alexis was doing. If we’d had Campbell, Giroud and Welbeck at the front, we might have had more of a chance of scoring again and not losing all three points.
This, along with Wenger subbing Coquelin in favour of Flamini against Barcelona has to be up there with one of the boss’ strangest decisions.