Park Chu-Young is a proven goal scorer. However, he needs a hell of a long leg to score from the bench, which is where he’s been wasting away all season long for Arsenal. Chu-Young is getting fed up of watching games instead of participating in them and according to his agent he’s ready to leave Emirates Stadium in the summer.
It’s hard to blame the 26-year old. He’s the captain of South Korea with 23 goals in 57 games for his country and has proven everywhere he’s played that he can put the ball in the net. He scored 18 goals in 26 games for his nation’s Under-20 team and then added eight more in 21 Under-23 matches. In 69 games with FC Seoul he scored 23 more times before adding another 25 in 91 matches with Monaco in French Ligue 1.
He hasn’t been given the chance by manager Arsene Wenger to show what he can do in England and has only played about eight minutes of Premier League football all season, coming on as a late sub in the 2-1 home loss to Manchester United. He’s played in one Champions League match as well as three Carling Cup games and scored the winner in a 2-1 victory over Bolton.
Wenger has chosen to use Robin van Persie, Thierry, Henry, and the ineffective Marouane Chamakh up front this season while the South Korean has been glued to the bench. Chu-Young said previously that he’d stay with the Gunners and fight for his spot, but has apparently changed his mind somewhat. His agent told a Seoul newspaper that if things don’t change then his client’s going to have to leave in the summer transfer window to find first-team football.
Rumours spread during the January transfer window that Fulham put in a bid for the striker as they wanted him on loan until the end of the season. Chu-Young’s agent said these weren’t true though and nobody put in an official bid for his services. He said that the British media reported that an offer was made, but the club told him it wasn’t the case.
Arsenal signed the striker in August from Monaco for about two million pounds, which can be considered a pretty good bargain these days. But it’s hard to understand why Wenger bought him if he has no faith in the player. It’s obvious somebody is to blame for the situation and that’s either Chu-Young, Wenger, or Arsenal’s scouting staff.
It’s amazing to followers of professional sports in places such as North America that players can be bought for relatively high prices and never be used. The lack of serious scouting in football is harming the game since numerous mediocre players are being bought after playing a couple of good games or having a good showing at a World Cup or European Championship.
Just looking at the long list of Arsenal players that are out on loan at the moment should trigger off the alarm bells. These include Emmanuel Frimpong, Ryo Miyaichi, Henri Lansbury, Nicklas Bendtner, Daniel Boateng, Carlos Vela, Joel Campbell, and Denilson. In fact, there’s 18 Gunners out on loan this season. Some of them are young and could make it with the big team in the future, but what about the likes of Vela, Bendtner, and Denilson?
There’s definitely something wrong with the system when players are bought only to be deemed not good enough without really being given a chance. Many of these players often flourish once they move elsewhere are and given the minutes needed to properly assess them.
It would be unfair to rate Chu-Young as an Arsenal player with so little to go on. We don’t really know how good he is after just eight minutes of league football under his belt and 298 minutes in total. But looking at his goal scoring record throughout his career it makes you wonder why he hasn’t been given the opportunity to prove himself in England.