Arsenal scout Steve Rowley is set to leave the club after 35 years of service, according to latest reports.
The Daily Mail write that Rowley is fed up of being made a scapegoat for Arsenal’s poor transfer record, and has told scouting colleagues that he plans to leave. A club spokesman says the scout’s future hasn’t been finalised, however.
Arsenal are planning a revamp of the club’s recruitment system, although this makes it slightly unclear whether the Mail are saying that Rowley is planning to quit, or the Gunners are preparing for life without him.
In my opinion, the Gunners do need to step up the level of their transfer business when it comes to scouting relatively unknown players. For example, it seems Kylian Mbappé was on Arsenal’s radar before he even scored a goal for the Monaco first-team, but the Gunners didn’t make a move that January, and by the summer it was too late.
Whether the scouts didn’t do enough to detail just how good Mbappé could be, or Arsenal’s negotiators just decided it was better to wait a bit longer, we don’t know. But either way, something needs to change so young talents don’t keep slipping through the net and moving to other top clubs.