Paris St. Germain have been offered Arsenal right back Hector Bellerin, according to reports out of France. We say “have been offered” because the report does not make it clear whether Arsenal have done the offering or whether his agent has. PSG are in the market for a new right back this summer, and apparently it’s right back rumor day at Arsenal, with Ainsley Maitland-Niles seemingly headed to Wolves.
Like the Maitland-Niles rumor, this Bellerin one comes out of nowhere. It’s a head-scratcher. Selling both AMN and Bellerin would leave just Cedric Soares on the right back depth chart, which is no way to begin a season. Should Arsenal move both, I’d have to assume that the club has a replacement lined up. But other than rumors about interest in Norwich’s Max Aarons a few months ago, the Gunners have not been linked with any right backs.
Every player has a price, and if PSG are willing to pony up a significant amount of cash, say €40M+, I’ve got no problem with selling Bellerin. I’d be sad to see Hector go, but there is no room for sentimentality in running a football club, especially one on a close to shoestring budget like Arsenal reportedly have.
That said, the timing of the rumor feels a bit convenient for me. PSG right back Thilo Kehrer just had a nightmare of a match in a Champions League Final, and the next day his club is linked with a right back who has scarcely been amidst the transfer whispers? Seems fishy.
I’d like to see Arsenal give Bellerin another season to recapture his pre-ACL injury form. For some players, it’s an 18-month recovery, and we’ve just hit that mark with Bellerin. But hanging on to Bellerin could prove a double-edged sword. It’s fantastic if he returns to being a top right back, but if he can’t get back to where he was, his sell-on value takes a significant hit.
Fortunately, this rumor doesn’t pass the smell-test for me, so I’m not overly concerned about a Bellerin sale quite yet. It’s more of a “keep an eye on it” thing.