Arsenal wanted €20m for Matteo Guendouzi but they have settled for just €12m, most of which they won’t get until next summer.

Matteo Guendouzi Hertha BSC, 06 05 2021, Copyright: Matthias Koch
Matteo Guendouzi Hertha BSC, 06 05 2021, Copyright: Matthias Koch

After Arsenal came to an agreement to send William Saliba on loan to Marseille for the season, Matteo Guendouzi’s move suddenly came unstuck after weeks of wrangling.

The midfielder, who cost Arsenal £7.2m and was worth £40.5m when Mikel Arteta arrived, will now leave for £10.3m when he’s worth £18m.

Great business, as always, by Arsenal.

According to claims from France, Marseille will pay €1m to loan Guendouzi for the 2021/22 season. The deal also includes an obligation to buy the 22-year-old for €11m at the end of that campaign.

Other clubs were interested in Guendouzi, but the player only wanted to move to Marseille. He was so enamoured by the proposal they put in front of him not even Borussia Dortmund nor Unai Emery, the man who made him a first-team starter at Arsenal, could turn his head. Arsenal even tried to include him in a swap deal for Nuno Tavares, who has arrived in London, but Guendouzi wasn’t moved.

Whatever really happened between Mikel Arteta and Matteo Guendouzi, for a club desperate for both good players and more money, it’s just awful management all around.

Guendouzi is expected in Marseille on Monday to complete his move.