Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s largely unfulfilled six years at Arsenal appear to be ending if Sky Sports are to be believed, as they are reporting a fee - undisclosed, as of now - has been reached between Arsenal and fellow London club Chelsea before Thursday’s transfer window closure.
BREAKING: @ChelseaFC agree fee with @Arsenal for Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, according to Sky sources #SSN pic.twitter.com/1D6ayeIluV— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) August 28, 2017
Arsenal, as a whole, were dreadful yesterday at Liverpool but it took an extraordinary effort to stand out from the rest of the awful performances, and Oxlade-Chamberlain managed to do just that. One of the worst things fans and pundits can do is judge body language and subjective interpretations of effort as binding, objective conclusions, yet it was apparent to almost every observer of the match that Ox had little interest in the affair, whether it was heading up the pitch to attack a goal when the rest of his teammates were defending Liverpool’s possession that led to their first goal, or his lackadaisical tracking back in the middle of the pitch - the one area he’s long pined for - which led to Sadio Mane exposing a hapless Rob Holding for his goal.
With a move to Chelsea, Ox may very well hit the heights that Arsenal fans had long hoped for when he moved to the club from Southampton in 2011. After all, he’s going to a club that has a working system, structure, and coach in place. But it’s hard not to see his departure as one of the first cancerous growths needing excised from the squad.