Arsenal right-back Hector Bellerin remains insistent that he wants to return to Real Betis this summer after spending time on loan with them last season.
Playing in your home country does bring a bit of comfort and it is one of the factors that is not letting Bellerin give up on Betis. He made 32 first-team appearances last season (stats via Transfermarkt) for Manuel Pellegrini’s side across all competitions.
Bellerin was part of the team that won the Spanish Cup this year and Betis want him to return for the upcoming campaign. His last few years at Arsenal have been a nightmare and a change of environment will certainly prolong his career.
Although the Spaniard’s contributions were not enough for Real Betis to secure a top-4 finish in La Liga last season, he is desperate to extend his stay and make himself at home with the Andalusian side. His first year with the Spanish club can certainly be considered as successful.
The Spaniard progressed through FC Barcelona’s youth system before joining the North London side in 2011. He had also served as the captain of the senior team during his time at Arsenal.
The Spanish international made a total of 239 appearances for the Gunners, providing 9 goals and 29 assists (stats via Transfermarkt) across all competitions. Once regarded as one of the most promising full-backs and a fantastic asset for the team, Bellerin’s form declined in recent years. Injuries reduced his game time quite a bit.
Why Bellerin Leaving Is Good For Arsenal?
Hector Bellerin was one of the first names on the Arsenal teamsheet before Mikel Arteta took over as manager. The Spanish right-back does not exactly fit the player profile that the manager wants and also has had a few disastrous performances at Arsenal in the recent past. The Spaniard fell down the pecking order at the Emirates Stadium, making him choose a loan move to his home country to get valuable game time.
He might even be having concerns about returning to Arsenal now. There is a possibility that he could fail again at Arsenal. That is one outcome that Bellerin will be trying to avoid. Not only Hector Bellerin – the feeling from Arsenal’s side is also mutual. They have definitely moved on from the Spaniard.
Mikel Arteta is now working wonders at the club and experimenting by bringing Bellerin back might disturb the flow. Moreover, if the player himself is not willing to play for the club then the pursuit there itself is over. Arsenal should now focus on their high-priority signings before replacing Hector Bellerin at the club.
Arsenal currently have Takehiro Tomiyasu who has been a gift to them so far. The Gunners signed the 23-year-old Japanese on a permanent deal last summer from Bologna. Both the clubs agreed on a fee of £16 million-plus bonuses while allowing Bellerin to join Betis on loan so that he could clear his mind and find his form back.
Tomiyasu is now Arsenal’s first-choice right-back and has impressed in most of the matches he has played. However, due to calf injuries, he has also missed several matches. This is when Cedric Soares stepped up and he has filled the void very competently. Soares has not let the absence of Tomiyasu affect the gameplay on the pitch.
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Betis president Angel Haro confirmed that Bellerin would return to the Emirates, but hinted that the Los Verdiblancos are tempted to sign him on a permanent basis:
‘Hector is a fantastic player and a very good person. It was a loan that we had from Arsenal, now he returns to Arsenal and from then on, we’ll see.
It is true that he has been very caught up in everything about Betis because, in addition, his parents are Betis fans. Hopefully we cross paths again.’
The Seville club reportedly asked Arsenal to cancel their contract with Hector Bellerin, facilitating his free transfer to Real Betis. The Gunners turned down the request to terminate the Spaniard’s contract. Teammate Borja Iglesias even suggested crowdfunding to sign the defender permanently.
Selling Hector Bellerin to Betis will give Arsenal some funds to make one more signing. They could possibly get a suitable right-back by selling a right-back who is now out-of-favour at Arsenal. It is very important for a manager to get what he wants during the rebuilding phase and Arteta has so far been getting that support from the Arsenal board.
On the other hand, Bellerin will finally get a fresh start elsewhere which will help him to return to his best self. The 27-year-old still has a few years of top-flight football left in him and should capitalise on the opportunity while he still has it. Both Arsenal and Hector Bellerin should move forward with the transfer which will profit both parties in the end.
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