OFFICIAL: Arsenal's Carlos Vela To Join Valencia In 2011/2012
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has already made two defying transfer decisions despite the January Transfer Window not opening for another few days.
After allowing highly-touted youngster Havard Nordtveit to depart to German outfit Borussia Mönchengladbach for an undisclosed fee, Wenger's negligence is now set to see talented striker Carlos Vela sold to Spanish giants Valencia for around £6 million.
This may come as no surprise for Arsenal fans, as Vela was a ticking time bomb whilst at the Emirates.
Despite showing great potential and superb skill, Wenger simply refused to grant the Mexican sharpshooter opportunities in the first team, with the 21-year-old's predominant playing time coming in the League Cup.
After impressing greatly in the 2005 U-17 World Cup, where the Mexico star won the Golden Boot award, a number of big-name clubs began to take an interest but it was Arsenal who won out, snatching Vela from Mexican giants C.D. Guadalajara for £125,000.
Due to work permit havoc, Vela was loaned to Spanish Segunda side U.D. Salamanca for the whole of 2006/2007.
During his stay with the Charros, the young forward impressed greatly, showing great speed and skill, notching eight goals and assisting 15 in 31 appearances, in what was a successful stint.
To continue Vela's rapid growth, Wenger offloaded the Mexican to La Liga outfit Osasuna for the entire 2007/2008 campaign. The versatile striker continued to impress, appearing 33 times, predominantly as a winger, and scoring four goals.
Upon his return to North London, fans alongside Wenger were eager to witness this talented North American.
It didn't take long for Vela to prove his worth, in his full debut, a match against Sheffield United in the League Cup, the Mexican dynamo scored a brilliant hat trick, as the Gunners thrashed the Blades 6-0.
In the following round of the Cup, Vela starred again, this time against Wigan Athletic. The Mexican capped of a fine performance with a superb goal in which Vela chipped a hapless Chris Kirkland. But despite Vela's promise, Wenger seemed disinclined to utilize such a glistening talent.
Vela would go on to only feature here and there for the rest of 2008/2009, with the odd appearance off the bench in the Premier League. 2009/2010 was no different. Despite fans eager to see an experienced, matured Vela given opportunities in the first team, Wenger had other ideas.
The Frenchman refused to grant the Mexican international a loan spell despite a number of Premier League clubs showing great interest.
Is Wenger Making A Mistake By Selling Carlos Vela?
Arsenal endured another horror spell of injuries in the first half of the campaign, particularly to forwards, yet Wenger refused to gift Vela chances.
Once again, most of the young guns opportunities came in the League or FA Cup, or at the season's end, when the Gunners' title end had diminished. But come the start of the current season, fans were keen, surely Wenger would now use his Mexican striker.
Vela was given the No. 11 shirt, previously owned by star striker Robin van Persie, who switched to No. 10. Fans felt this act signified Vela's arrival as a definite first-team player.
Sadly, it has not been the case, despite being among goals, Vela has only mustered 11 appearances this term, eight of which have come from the bench. The three starts have been in the League Cup.
The former Osasuna loanee hasn't disappointed, either. Vela has looked calm and dangerous on the ball, as well as showing great speed and versatility. In Arsenal's most recent match, the Gunners took on Wigan, in a hectic December period.
Wenger made nine changes to the team that beat rivals Chelsea 3-0. Vela was just able to make the bench but was refused a chance to make an impact as Wigan managed to steal a point with a late equalizer to make it 2-2.
None can argue Vela's impatience and his hunger to depart the Emirates, and all hope the Mexican has a stellar career in the La Liga.
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