An early wake-up call, a meeting with the Pope and Manchester United’s low valuation led to Danny Welbeck becoming an Arsenal player.
It was back in the summer of 2014 that an injury to Olivier Giroud left Arsenal scrambling for a new centre forward.
Their only alternative at the time, as much as he could be called one, was Yaya Sanogo.
Deadline day came about, and Arsenal were no closer to getting a striker.
In fact, Arsene Wenger seemed to be doing everything but look for one, as he jetted off to Italy to coach a team in a charity match and meet with the Pope.
Eventually, the club signed Welbeck from Manchester United, in a deal worth £16m.
“If I had not travelled that day, Welbeck would not be here,” Wenger said at the time.
The Evening Standard provided more details about how the move happened.
While Wenger didn’t explain how him being in Italy helped with the deal, beyond saying his early wake-up calk ensured he had more time in the day.
The report also states that Wenger initially wanted the forward on loan with an option to buy, as he had doubts about him.
However, United’s relatively low valuation convinced him to sign him permanently.
It’s safe to say that Welbeck has never caught fire at Arsenal, but now has a chance, his last, perhaps, to prove his quality.