Danny Welbeck is expected to be given the chance for one more Arsenal appearance before he leaves the club on a free and will be included in the squad travelling to Baku for the Champions League final.
Arsenal announced that Danny Welbeck would be leaving when they presented him with a commemorative plate after the final home game of the season. Well, they didn’t really announce it, they just called him up along with Petr Cech and Aaron Ramsey.
The message was clear.
But it seems as if he could have one final swansong in him.
According to Sam Mokbel in the Daily Mail he “is in line to make his Arsenal comeback and farewell in the Europa League final. The England international hasn’t played since breaking an ankle in November, an injury that required two operations. But he has returned to full training and it is understood the club are planning to take the forward to Baku. Welbeck — who will be leaving when his contract expires at the end of the season — is hopeful of being named on the bench.”
Welbeck only played 604 minutes this season before breaking his ankle against Sporting CP in November when he landed awkwardly.
Welbeck has suffered three serious injuries since he joined Arsenal and has missed 124 games. He’s only played a total of 126 since he arrived in 2014 for £18m.
A number of clubs have been linked with a move for Welbeck this summer. Everton, West Ham, Valencia and Newcastle have all been mentioned however the Magpies don’t seem that interested in him.
According to Chronicle Live, “Toon sources are cool on the name of the 42-times Three Lions international.”
It will be a hard sell for Welbeck this summer, no matter what happens. He will have to prove that his ankle can stand up to the rigours of life in the Premier League and, with no minutes under his belt to do that, he’s going to have to rely on somebody somewhere taking a leap of faith in him.
An appearance in Baku would certainly go some way to alleviating the fears of any club considering purchasing him and he could offer backup in case Henrikh Mkhitaryan doesn’t make the trip. An argument could be made, however, that Welbeck’s slot should go to a youngster who will be at the club next season.
Under Unai Emery, Welbeck has played just 14 times and while there is no doubt he would have seen more game time if his ankle hadn’t snapped like it was made of Jack Wilshere DNA, his return of 32 goals and 15 assists from 126 games since his transfer from Manchester United in 2014 has hardly spoken of restrained striker just waiting for a run of fitness.