Arsenal are reportedly about to sell Joe Willock to Newcastle United, and former Everton and Crystal Palace star Yannick Bolasie has delivered his verdict on the Englishman.
The 21-year-old Hale End graduate has always impressed at youth level. Coaches in the academy were convinced he would become a regular at Arsenal one day, but sadly, his time at the Emirates seems to have come to an end.
The Athletic revealed yesterday that Newcastle have agreed a fee in excess of £20 million with Arsenal for Willock, while Football London claimed that the Gunners are set to earn £25 million subject to add-ons.
Bolasie reacts as Arsenal reportedly agree to sell Joe Willock
Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta left Willock out of his squad against Tottenham yesterday and that was the first big hint about the midfielder leaving. Soon after the derby, reports emerged that he’s on his way out, and a deal looks imminent at this point.
Newcastle were desperate to sign Willock even before the end of last season. He almost singlehandedly kept them up and it is no surprise to anyone that he was their number one target this summer.
Steve Bruce has finally got his man and Magpies fans will be delighted. If any of them need any more convincing, Bolasie’s two-word verdict on Willock yesterday should do the trick.
Why are Arsenal selling him?
After a season as incredible as the last one, some fans are baffled as to why Arsenal would even consider selling Willock. David Ornstein has shed some light on the situation in his latest piece on The Athletic.
The report claims that Arteta was open to reintegrating Willock into Arsenal’s first team. However, the Gunners had decided that if an offer in excess of £20 million was put on the table, they would let him leave.
The reported £25 million fee really does look like a small one considering how good Willock was at the end of last season. However, that’s the most we could get out of Newcastle, and Edu and Arteta decided that it was a fair price for a squad player who has less than two years left on his contract.