Arsenal’s potential collaboration deal with Betis – A look at the benefits of the deal in-depth

Posted: April 17, 2013 in Arsenal, La Liga, Premier League
Joel's come on leaps & bounds at Betis. Could other Arsenal youngsters follow in his footsteps?

Joel’s come on leaps & bounds at Betis. Could other Arsenal youngsters follow in his footsteps?

With the news that Arsenal would be signing a collaborative agreement with Betis, or a link-up with the Spanish club in other words, I thought it’d be appropriate to write about what this deal could have in store for both parties. I’ll be looking at who we may be interested in from their squad, which of our players could be moving there next season and why Betis are a very good club to get this deal done with.

It’s been widely reported in the last couple of weeks that Pepe Mel (Betis’ manager) and Miguel Guillén (Betis’ club president) will be travelling to London in the near future to put pen to paper on this deal. Arsene Wenger has already shortlisted a few of his players, youth & fringe players struggling to get first-team football, so it’s incredibly likely that we’ll see this deal concluded sometime this season with more details to be unveiled in due time.

The deal, essentially, sees us loan players to Betis for further development or, as mentioned previously, offer game time for those who can’t get into the team. It gives us an easy route to loan out some who we can’t offload just yet because of high wages; so, hypothetically speaking, someone like Bendtner, Chamakh, Mannone etc. could be the prime candidates for moves to the Andalusian outfit. In terms of youngsters, many sources have tipped the following bright youngsters with loan moves to Betis: Ryo Miyaichi, Thomas Eisfeld, Francis Coquelin, Serge Gnabry and an outside chance of Hector Bellerin, assuming that Wenger thinks he’s close to breaking in to the first-team quite soon.

Now, there’s more in it for Arsenal than just the careful, yet productive, nature of the development of our future starlets. It’s strongly believed that Arsenal will get first pick at the top talents in the Betis team, and there’s quite a few to choose from. The main candidate will be the Spanish box-to-box midfielder whose made waves in La Liga this season, Beñat. Beñat is, predominantly, a defensive-midfielder who plays in a pivot with another potential Arsenal target in Cañas. Beñat has started to build a lot of hype around him since flourishing in a box-to-box role; his quick feet, vision and set-piece taking have seen him earn many plaudits, and deservedly so. He plays very much like Mikel Arteta does, but he’s more defensive-minded if needs be. He’s only 26, so he could dispossess Mikel Arteta from that defensive-midfield role, which’d allow our Spaniard more leeway to roam forward. Beñat has amassed four goals and seven assists this season, the latter seeing him top the assists table for Betis.

Benat passing

This shows how positive his passing is when playing in a box-to-box role. He’s very incisive with his passing and hardly plays backward passes, which’d see him suit our midfield. Via (Squawka Sports)

The next player is one who hasn’t featured much this season, but has caught the eye whenever making a substitute appearance: Álvaro Vadillo. Vadillo is the brightest prospect in the Betis team by a country mile. The 18-year old Spaniard has only made eight appearances this season, with six of them being off the bench. In these cameos, he’s picked up two assists and has made a good case for Pepe Mel to ponder whether the bright, young winger is ready to start for Betis. It’d be interesting to see where he’d fit in to an Arsenal side with an already up and coming winger in Oxlade-Chamberlain, although if Wenger decides to give Chamberlain some chances down the middle, the addition of Vadillo would make sense.

In six sub appearances, Vadillo has created ten goal scoring chances; two of them culminating in assists. Via (Squawka Sports)

In six sub appearances, Vadillo has created ten goal scoring chances; two of them culminating in assists. Via (Squawka Sports)

The final two who we could also have some sort of interest in are: Adrián and the aforementioned Cañas. Adrián has kept ten clean sheets in 24 league starts this season. He’s a very good shot-stopper and a great distributor of the ball. Should Fabianski fail to renew his contract, I could see Arsenal exploiting this link-up to bring Adrián in as someone who can provide Szczesny with some competition. The final player, and the unlikeliest for Arsenal to show interest in, is Cañas. Cañas is Beñat’s partner in the midfield; the two play in a pivot which, later in the game, turns into a 1-2 system where Cañas sits deeper and allows Beñat to roam forward in order to try and create chances. There are two reasons why I think Cañas is unlikely to join, or gain interest from Wenger: He’s available on a free in the summer, and Swansea have, supposedly, agreed a deal with Betis in January to bring him in for free in the summer transfer window, the other reason is the fact he’s very ill-disciplined; he commits some unnecessary challenges off the ball, but makes up for it with the way he reads the game, breaks up the play, intercepts many opposition passes in the ‘danger zones’ and is a very prolific winner of the ball.

This shows how successful he is in the tackle, but also his ugly side with the fouls hie commits.

This shows how successful he is in the tackle, but also his ugly side with the fouls hie commits. Via (Squawka Sports)

In conclusion to the potential signings of those players, Beñat would be the best signing and the dearest too, with many Spanish sources reporting that he’d cost circa £18M.

I believe this deal with Betis could work very well for both parties. We’ve seen the way Joel Campbell has adapted to life in Spain and Betis. He’s matured as a player, has developed a whole new skill-set from playing in various positions and has won the heart of many Betis fans with his positive attitude and incredibly high work-rate and fitness levels. This would be a good sign for our youngsters as they’d potentially talk to Joel, he’d speak incredibly highly of his time at Betis and the fans would give said youngsters the time and belief having seen how Joel came in and improved the side. On the topic of Joel Campbell, the rumoured clause in this deal is that Betis get the Costa Rican for another season-long loan. What with Joel getting his work permit this coming summer (fingers crossed), it makes next-to-no sense that he’s being sent back to Betis, considering he’d be eligible for a loan move to a Premier League side in order to get a taste of English football. Personally, I don’t think we’ll ever see Joel in an Arsenal shirt again if he returns on loan next season to Betis – I say this because, by the time the second loan would’ve ended, he’d have built a very strong bond with his team-mates, Pepe Mel, the fans and the club as a whole. He’s really enjoying himself in Spain, and could be playing European football next season with Betis.

As a whole, this will see us build a very positive link with the Andalusian club. It wouldn’t surprise me if this led to us playing them in a friendly every season, or maybe them taking part in the Emirates cup. Overall, this is a very beneficial deal for both clubs.

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