Costa Rican forward Joel Campbell has revealed that Arsenal’s decision to ship him out on loan to Sporting Lisbon was on his own request.
Campbell, who made only 19 league appearances for Arsenal last term, said he would have remained at Arsenal, as the Gunners boss Arséne Wenger wanted him to stay put.
The 24-year old has had four loan stints at Lorient, Real Betis, Olympiakos and Villareal since his move from Deportivo Saprissa in 2011 and, the transfer to Sporting will be his fifth. Campbell claims his decision to leave was in order to gain ample game time which he could not get at the Emirates.
The left-footed forward is behind the likes Alexis Sanchez, Theo Walcott and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain in the pecking order under Wenger and, Campbell was not even named in the matchday squad that faced Leicester last weekend.
Campbell told Nacion: “”I made that decision because I’m at an important stage in my football life, an ideal age to grow.”
“When I realised I was not going to play as much as I wanted I thought it would be better to go on loan. In reality going on loan has been my request.
On his different loan stints, the 24-year old added: “I have ambition. I want to play, and I love football. Truth is I don’t feel comfortable not playing every Sunday. I don’t want to settle for less.
“The coach told me he would have liked me to stay, but playing is my priority and if I’m not 100% on his plans, then I prefer to go on loan and play football.”
Arsenal have agreed deals for striker, Lucas Perez and centre-back, Shkodran Mustafi, with the transfers of both players to be announced imminently.