A mystery Reddit user has come out of the woodwork, claiming to shed light on the recent Kostas Manolas to Arsenal saga.
The gist, as reported by pretty much all English media outlets, is that Arsenal had a £35m (€40m) bid for Roma centreback, Kostas Manolas, turned down in the summer. We then obviously spent the same amount on Shkodran Mustafi from Valencia and the rest is history.
— Pete O'Rourke (@SportsPeteO) January 11, 2017
Back in summer, when Arsenal decided to loan Jack Wilshere out, Roma were one of the clubs interested in taking him. However, we asked the Serie A club for a comparatively high loan fee, which they refused, and we sent Jack to Bournemouth.
At the time, David Orstein from the BBC suggested that we’d made life difficult for Roma because we were still harbouring a grudge following the Manolas palava.
— David Ornstein (@bbcsport_david) August 31, 2016
Well, if this mystery Reddit user is right, then it looks like this is true.
They claim that Manolas’ people confirmed that the defender could indeed move to Arsenal for €35m – less than they originally claimed, which was closer to €50m – before suddenly pulling the plug without any explanation.
Roma and Arsenal’s working relationship has apparently been tense for a couple of years, since organising Wojciech Szczesny’s two loan spells, as the Italian team apparently messed us around regarding how much of the goalkeeper’s wages they were supposed to pay. But this fiasco over Manolas, a player we desperately needed at the time, was the last straw.
It all sounds plausible, although, as another Reddit user pointed out, Roma would have had to pay Manolas’ former club, Olympiacos, a fee if they had sold him., insinuating that they would have asked for even more money from us, if the story is true.
Is this really what happened? We’ll leave you to make your own judgement.