Arsenal technical director Edu has revealed why he refused to sign an unnamed Borussia Dortmund player. He stated that he tried selling the club's project to the player, however, the latter seemed motivated only by the financial aspects of the deal.
Speaking to The Athletic (via Caught Offside), the Gunners' football director revealed how he follows a particular system in order to sign only the right kind of players for the club. He said:
“Face to face — I go there, I meet the player, if I have to travel to Germany, anywhere. I want to see the player, the agent, the family, put everyone together and say, ‘Guys, listen to me and what I want to say’.”
“And then I sell what we are doing, our project. Because it works both ways, doesn’t it? I want to show them, but I want to see as well if they want to enjoy because if I smell something wrong (then) thank you very much, I go (and don’t sign them).
The Arsenal chief went on to explain how an experience with a Borussia Dortmund player made him decide against signing the player:
“I faced an experience like this, for a player in Dortmund. I started to talk to them, engage the player, talk to the family, but always, ‘Yeah, but what about my contract?’."
“I said, ‘Listen, I want to understand first if you engage with this, if you like this. If you like it, I can talk, but not the opposite side’. ‘Ah no, let’s talk about the money…’ No, no, no, no. And one day, I said to the agent: ‘Guys, thank you very much, it’s not what I want to do’. Boom.”
With players like Gabriel Jesus and Oleksandr Zinchenko recently joining the Gunners, it is clear that Edu's approach is bringing in the right kind of players. He will perhaps hope to strengthen the side further this summer, having already made five signings.
Borussia Dortmund star chooses Manchester United over Arsenal: Reports
According to a report by Gazzetta dello Sport (via Express), Arsenal have been linked with a move for Manuel Akanji, but the defender reportedly prefers a move to Old Trafford.
Arsenal also missed out on signing Lisandro Martinez earlier in the window, with the Argentine defender picking United over the Gunners.
Arsenal are tipped to sign one more defender before the season starts, and have been approached by Dortmund, who value Akanji around £21 million.
The 27-year-old was not included in the club's pre-season friendlies and was told by manager Edin Terzic that he would not be a part of his future plans.
Arsenal will hope that they can convince the Borussia Dortmund defender to sign for them. However, he has openly stated that he supports Manchester United, who are also tipped to sign a central defender before the season starts.