Monday, 16 March 2020

Why hasn't Iwobi's Everton career got off the ground after Arsenal exit?

The Nigeria international moved to Merseyside last summer, but is little more than a squad player under Carlo Ancelotti
The ideal transfer, as a concept, would see all three parties involved – player (representative included), selling club, buying club – perfectly satisfied with their lot at the end of negotiations.

In the strictest terms, this scenario is almost impossible to come by; the very nature of economic activity makes that apparent. However, two out of three is an acceptable enough compromise. One out of three though, and one begins to wonder…

Take Alex Iwobi, for instance.

The 23-year-old, who came through the ranks at Arsenal and had been a valuable squad player for four seasons, joined Everton in the summer for a fee rising to £35 million. It was immediately a transfer that sent alarm bells ringing.

Of the three parties involved, only the North London club could be said to be have been pleased with the business they had been able to do. Having made a number of purchases: a club-record acquisition of Nicolas Pepe from Lille and Kieran Tierney from Celtic among others, the Gunners were eager to recoup some money to offset their splurge, and so considered a player of Iwobi’s status expendable.

Iwobi himself, a player who joined Arsenal at the age of eight, admitted to Soccer Saturday he had been “very comfortable” at the Emirates and “didn’t think about any move” before receiving the call from his agent while on break following the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations.

For their part, Everton had been in the market for a left-winger, and had specifically targeted Crystal Palace’s Wilfried Zaha, who was keen to move to Goodison Park.

Only on transfer deadline day, when it became clear the Eagles would rebuff any further approaches, did they explore the possibility to signing Iwobi instead.

So, from the outset, it was clear there was going to have to be some making do.

While Iwobi is a conscientious enough professional that he would be willing to fit within the ethos of a nominally smaller club, there is a significant difference in direct goal-threat and output between him and a player like Zaha, similarities in their ball-carrying aside.


No comments:

Post a Comment