Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has revealed that he wanted to sign Danny Welbeck only on-loan from Manchester United.
The England international left his boyhood club and completed the switch to the Emirates on the final day of the summer transfer window.
“If I had not been away on deadline day, Welbeck would not have signed. That’s the truth,” Wenger said, as quoted in The Guardian.
“It was quick because it was the last day of the transfer window but I had no hesitation to do it.”
The 23-year-old was informed by Louis van Gaal that his services are not required at Old Trafford. Welbeck wanted to get regular playing time at United and with just two competitions this season – after the Capital One Cup exit – the striker knew it would be hard to be in the starting XI.
If the reports are to be believed, United were looking to allow Welbeck leave only on-loan. However, the English striker’s agent admitted during the transfer window that the player wanted to leave his former club only on a permanent transfer.
“There have been a few clubs in for Danny and they’re looking for loan deals with a view to buying, but Danny doesn’t want to go on loan. He wants a straight transfer and he has every right to say that,” Welbeck’s agent Jonathan Hope told Talksport.
“In the last half an hour I have received some interest in a straight transfer which I’m going to speak to Manchester United about.”
Prior to Welbeck’s signing, Arsenal had only Olivier Giroud and Yaya Sanogo as the recognised strikers in the squad. However, Giroud picked up an injury and is set to be on the sidelines for several months.
With a long-term injury to the French international, Wenger had to bring in a striker before the window closes as Arsenal are competing in all four competitions this season. The Emirates club were keen on bringing in a player as a similar injury to Sanogo would have seen Wenger and the Gunners struggle in their bid to win silverwares.
The North London club were aware of Welbeck’s situation at United and were considering a loan move for him. Also, Wenger was looking for other options in the transfer market.
However, Welbeck wanted to leave Old Trafford only on a permanent transfer, which forced Wenger to pay £16m to United for the services of the English striker.
Apart from Arsenal, several clubs including Tottenham Hotspur, Hull City and Sunderland were interested in loan moves for Welbeck. If not for Giroud’s injury, there could have been a possibility that the striker could have been on-loan at some other Premier League club and still remained as United player.