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Thomas Vermaelen's sale to Barcelona was clever stuff from Arsene Wenger and Arsenal

Why Vermaelen's sale to Barcelona was a stroke of genius from Arsenal and Wenger

Feature 15 May 2015, 12:00 IST
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Thomas Vermaelen Arsenal Barcelona
Arsenal sold Thomas Vermaelen to Barcelona for £15 million

Last summer Arsène Wenger said he would replace Thomas Vermaelen if he sold him and many Arsenal fans were left feeling perplexed when the transfer window shut without a clear replacement for their ex-captain who had moved to the Camp Nou in a £15million deal, agreeing a five-year deal with the Catalan club.

Wenger did bring in Gabriel in the winter window but whilst appreciating the calibre of the player he had recruited many felt it was too little too late and the damage had been done in the summer. Arsène’s staunchest defenders, aka the AKB crew, justify Wenger’s lack of summer reinforcements at the back by pointing to a dearth of available talent for all clubs and how Barcelona, themselves in desperate need of a defender, put their eggs in a crocked basket.

It can also be noted that Vermaelen has been unavailable for Barcelona so Wenger saved 6 months of player wages and rehabilitation costs as well as bringing in enough money to purchase what he hopes will turn out to be a superior player, but it doesn’t stop there.

Arsenal insert clause in Thomas Vermaelen deal

According to reports, Arsenal managed to negotiate a clever clause that could pocket them a bonus should Barcelona win the Champions League. Arsenal are rumoured to have inserted a clause into Thomas Vermaelen’s sale agreement ensuring they will receive extra payments based on the success of Barcelona rather than the player. If this is true then the Arsenal delegation sent to hammer out this deal are absolute geniuses.

Vermaelen is yet to play competitively for Barcelona but that will not prevent Arsenal receiving a fee in the region of €4million (£2.8m) if the Catalans win the final against Juventus.

Wenger has always been lauded for his eye for a bargain but in recent years he has had to loosen the purse strings to catch up with the rest of the market but it seems between him, the Arsenal board and the contract reps the increase in expenditure for squad improvements is being slightly offset by an increase in secondary transfer fees by way of clever clauses with Vermaelen joining Carlos Vela in positively contributing to the financial success of Arsenal PLC.

Nice work.

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