Arsenal’s big-money flops were ‘killing’ the club, says Edu

    Arsenal were forced to pay off Mesut Ozil (right) and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Picture: Getty)
    Arsenal were forced to pay off Mesut Ozil (right) and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Picture: Getty)

    Arsenal’s technical director Edu has hit out at the club’s former big-money flops for ‘killing’ the Gunners.

    Arsenal were forced to pay off the likes of Mesut Ozil and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who were on long contacts with massive wages.

    Both exits were controversial with Ozil’s agent slamming Mikel Arteta and Aubameyang taking a dig at the north London club after his move to Barcelona.

    Other players Arsenal had to pay off include Shkodran Mustafi, Sead Kolasinac and Sokratis Papastathopoulos.

    Arsenal have failed to land a Premier League top four spot for the last six seasons in a row, securing fifth last term after back-to-back eighth-place finishes.

    Speaking about their recent failures, Edu told The Sun: ‘When a player’s 26 or older, has a big salary and is not performing, he’s killing you.

    ‘In the past, 80 per cent of the squad had those characteristics and there was no chance anyone would buy them.’

    Arsenal unveil new signing Oleksandr Zinchenko
    Edu (right) has been Arsenal’s technical director since 2019 (Picture: Getty)

    Edu, who became Arsenal’s technical director in 2019, added: ‘They don’t have a transfer value and are comfortable on a long contract living in London.

    ‘So we needed to clean the squad and if we had to pay some to go, I considered it an investment.

    ‘It’s better than having them blocking the path of another player. It’s not a problem if a player has a big salary and performs.

    ‘I know it’s strange to go to the board and tell them, ‘Sometimes it’s better to pay a player to leave than to keep them’.

    ‘I realise that hurts and some people say that it’s expensive — but you have to take the problem out.’

    Arsenal have been active in the summer transfer window, brining in striker Gabriel Jesus and defender Oleksandr Zinchenko from Manchester City for £45m and £32m each.

    They have also signed Fabio Vieira from Porto for £34m as well as goalkeeper Matt Turner from New England Revolution and Marquinhos from Sao Paulo for undisclosed fees.

    Arsenal’s Premier League season gets started on August 5 when they travel to face Crystal Palace.

    MORE : Edu makes new Arsenal transfer strategy promise to Mikel Arteta

    MORE : Edu hints at more Arsenal signings after Oleksandr Zinchenko transfer

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