Is Arsenal really going to bring Lucas Perez back into the first team?

By Tony Attwood

The first time I heard the story that Lucas Perez could be brought back from his series of loans to be part of the first team squad for 2018/9 I really couldn’t believe it.   But that tale has started popping up all over the place – which either means an awful lot of writers and editors are doing cut and paste jobs, or a bit of simplistic reasoning is going on which makes the story look plausible, or unlikely though it seems, it really is a plausible scenario. One of those three.

In this case there is a good reason to be cautious for not only is there only one source to the story, but that source itself doesn’t really suggest that Arsenal are taking Perez back.

All the publications that run the story in English quote El Desmarque as their source.  That “source” has published La “hoja de ruta de Lucas  Pérez” (The Lucas  Pérez road map).   No one else seems to be running the story – except to repeat what they have said.

So here is what they say, translated (obviously) from the Spanish.

“The summer of Lucas Pérez begins to take shape. Arsenal has already told the forward from Coruña when he will have to join the preseason: it will be on Monday, July 2. That is the date on which the North London team will start preparing the 2018-19 season, and will do so with Unai Emery as the new head of the first team.

“The signing by Arsenal of the new coach from Hondarribia [Emery’s home town]…  is seen as “good news” by the player’s entourage. In fact when Emery was coach of Paris Saint-Germain, he expressed a firm interest in Lucas during the summer of 2016.

“Both the attacker and Rodrigo Fernández Lovelle, his agent, were waiting to know who would be the occupant of the Arsenal manager’s office before beginning to assess what Pérez’ next destination will be. After confirming the arrival of Emery, and with the attacker on holiday after completing a disappointing season both personally and for the team, (as he himself has acknowledged on more than one occasion), Lovelle is waiting for a message from London to set a meeting at which the parties will address the future of the player.  The expectation is that the meeting in London will occur during the first half of June.”

So not exactly a “I want Lucas in my team” from the new manager.   But more a “what are we going to do with him?”   Lucas signed a four-year contract with Arsenal at the end of August 2016, on a salary around £2m a year plus bonuses.  And I can find little in the commentary from Spain to suggest they really do want him back.

On 27 August 2016 and he played his first game in a 2–1 home win over Southampton in a game in which he chalked up one assist.  He got two goals in a League cup match against Nottingham Forest the following month and three against Basel in the Champions League 4-1 win.  His first league goal came the following January as part of the come back from being 3-0 down against Bournemouth. 

Here’s the record…

Club Season Lge games Lge goals Cup games Cup goals Euro games Euro goals Total games Total goals
Deportivo 2015–16 36 17 1 0 0 0 37 17
2016–17 1 1 0 0 0 0 1 1
Arsenal 2016–17 11 1 7 3 3 3 21 7
Deportivo 2017–18 32 6 2 1 0 0 34 7

So, he got a fair number of games for Deportivo, but the question remains if he did come back, where would he play, or perhaps to put it another way round, when would he play.

We have in terms of players who can play in the forward line or in a line behind the one centre forward the likes of Aubamayang, Lacazette, Iwobi, Welbeck, Mkhitaryan, Ozil.   That is six players before we even consider any youngsters such as Eddie who might step up and get a few more games in Cup matches.   Would we really want one more?   Would we sell one of those players to make room for one more?

I really can’t see that happening.   And that, in one example, is what we find over and over.  There is talk about a possibility of a player being brought in or returning, but a little look at the detail suggests that the option seems not just unlikely but also unnecessary.

So what we have is that the Arsenal manager once enquired about Lucas when he was at PSG, that the Arsenal manager is Spanish and that the player whose loan has ended has been told of the date when all players are expected to report back for training.   Not really that much of an indication that Arsenal want to keep him.

17 Replies to “Is Arsenal really going to bring Lucas Perez back into the first team?”

  1. He is contracted to the club and therefor has a clean sheet as far as the new man is concerned .I thought he showed himself to be a capable player in the few opportunities he was handed , so pre season he has the chance to state his case.

  2. Only Arsene and his staff know why he didn’t become a first team regular.

    I think it is always sad when a player comes to a new club and it doesn’t happen for him. It looks as if he will leave but who knows.

    If he does leave lets hope he finds a good football home soon. I don’t know him but I wish him well.

    Instead of the noting the unending claims of transfers by the bubble gum minds of the media, why not more reviews of this kind?

    Info like this piece on other players on the fringe of the first team would be helpful.

  3. i liked the lad, i think AW was a bit harsh on him, but knowing the way the great man used to – sadly, we’ll have to get used to that verb form – function, there was no way he was going to mess up with his picking order, and alexis, theo, the ox, giroud, danny when fit … were far ahead of him, obviously
    having said that, when you take a good look at the current squad, no player is really fitted to play the role of a left-footed guy playing on the right wing – the most famous example of which being robben, of course (watch out! for all the esteem i have for him, i am not saying lucas is on a par with the flying dutchman).
    anyway … lucas’s quick, very talented (his volley against bournemouth was pure class, i think even AW said so). my father used to tell me that when you start realising a man on the pitch looks as though he has not lost one ball ever since the match began, the chap’s a special kind of player – to me, from the little we have seen of him, lucas is that kind of player; eventually he is a hard worker, has nothing against running deep back into midfield country, and be very good at it (giroud’s scorpion kick originated in a successful tackle by lucas). actually, the only youngster we have in store with that profile is the wondrous kid amaechi, but he probably needs a year or two before making it to the first team – once he’ll be there, he’ll be like a barnacle on a rock: the lad’s amazing.
    well, i confess … footballistically speaking, and arsenalistically speaking, i am a die-hard conservative; i get attached to a lad as son he puts on the shirt, and i feel sorry when he leaves …

  4. Is iwobi or welbeck better than lucas perez, meen don’t be judgemental, lucas might come good for arsenal this season, and might even perform better than inconsistent mesut ozil.

  5. That’s always the chance David, and that reminds me to start thinking about the list of 25 players just to see how much space there is.

  6. Whether Lucas Perez comes back or not is not really the point, the manager has to play with what`s available
    Apparently, we want success at Arsenal, but we are not prepared to pay for it
    Whoopee, the transfer budget has now gone up from £50 million to £70 million
    L`pool paid £75 million just for one centre half !!

    The new manager is having to cut his coat according to the cloth
    If our competitors spend money like water to get into the top 4, how are we going to do it on bus fare money

    I think it really illustrates just what a good job Wenger did on a miniscule budget
    Board members have confirmed he was given a restricted budget, but got on with it and still managed to make the top 4 apart from the last two years
    AND, he didn`t throw a wobbly
    Yes of course he probably was past his best (aint we all)
    Football is big business, the sport element has gone, we want the top 4 c`os that`s where the money is
    That is reality and we all want the goodies without having to cough up for it
    But let`s get real, with all due regard to Emery he is being handed a poisoned chalice

  7. He certainly won’t be higher in the pecking order than Auba and Laca, so is he prepared to fight for the last pure attacking position (excluding Ozil of course).
    He spent a large amount of time with us whinging about not playing and if he stays with us then I can’t see him playing more than 50% of the games at most.
    He’ll be 30 in September.
    I think it’s more a case of his agent trying to get his name to the forefront so his next move can be sorted asap.
    He’ll think that after a weak season at Coruna his value will have dropped and the club will be much more helpful in getting him off the books.

  8. I can’t see Perez wanting to be a bench warmer, so I suspect he will want to leave especially with rumors that Lazio and Genoa want him.

  9. The truth to the matter as I see it is, Lucas Perez is an injury prone player kind. The injury kind player that he is that saw him got sidelined at Arsenal more often than not for at least up 15 PL games in a 38 League games per PL season when he last played at Arsenal. This is bad for any PL Title that is challenging to win the Title of which Arsenal team is one. More so if the player is integral to the regular 18 match day squad. One other big issue which I think has mitigated against Lucas Perez in the PL when he was playing for Arsenal before Monsieur Wenger, the former Gunners boss forced him out on loan was his low output goals returns for Arsenal in the PL. Will he be brought back to remain in the Gunners 25 for next season’s campaign? Not likely in my own view.

    If what I opined in my last comment posting does make any sense to the new Gunners boss, Unai Emeritus, Ivan Gazidis, the Arsenal CEO, Sven Mislintat, the AFC’s head of recruitment and Raul Sanllehi, the AFC’s Director of football relations. I think they should all work in one accord to sign 2 top quality players of a centreback and a midfield playmaker as replacements for the departed Per Metersacker and Santi Cazorla and announce the signings before the World Cup kicks off in Jume. This will be in keeping up with the recent trend of concluding 1 – 2 top new deals early by Arsenal before or a new summer window or just into it during Monsieur Wenger’s Arsenal regime era as manager. I believe Unai Emeritus, the AFC CEO and the 2 senior backroom staff at the club know the reason behind my this my suggestion.

    If fact, if I have it in my own ways, I prefer to see Arsenal conclude all the 3 new incoming new deals that I am asking the club to conclude before the start of the World Cup. But since only 2 player positions are available for filling now in the current Gunners 25 team squad which Monsieur Wenger has left behind for Unai Emeri to inherit, Arsenal have to sell at least one Gunner this summer preferably a striker who is not only an injury prone player, but has turned out to be a lackluster goals scoring player for Arsenal ever since he joined the club from Man Utd before Arsenal can do the striker signing.

    In their current post 2017/18 season’s team Arsenal FC who will operate on a limited transfer budget kitty rumoured to be in the region of £50-70m will have to sell to fund the 3rd player striker signing this summer who should be a top grade striker for option and cover capable of scoring at least 15 PL goals and also gives at least 10 assists all during next season’s PL campaign.

    Jack Wilshere who went major injury free last season’s campaign for the first time in as many seasons but for the niggling ones which he had which almost every player in the PL does have should sign the deal that has been lying on the table at Arsenal for him to sign as soon as he can put pen to papers to sign it. Even if the Arsenal hierarchy refused to improve his pay to the amount he asked for, let him sign the deal on the table for now to remain at the Gunners where his heart is. I believe with an improved performance by him on his last season performance next season, he’ll get an improved deal likely during the January window next season.

  10. Off topic:

    Sergio Ramos should be banned from playing football, his use of the dark art is a pure disgrace. Deliberately injure his opponent or fake injury to get his opponent sent off to win a match is just plain wrong. It’s a shame that a talented and excellent player has to do this to win a game.

  11. @polo, that is just Hw the game is played now….dirty football wins, anti football wins…I guess arsenal should start adapting a bit to ensure we win big games…remember d tackle on mkhitaryan that took him out of the uel or vrsalko tackle on lacazette against atletico…. they were all intentional targeting key players……I guess if kocielny had done the same to griezmann in the first leg rather than concede a goal, we would be uel champions

  12. I really hope this apparent £50m budget we’ll have to spend in the market is nothing but a media invented fantasy. If that’s true then that really is absolutely pitiful from the board, only allowing such a (comparatively) small amount. Do we not get more than £50m from the TV rights in the PL alone? If so, I’d love to find out where all of the other money is going.

  13. Considering the talent in the squad. There does not need to be much spending.

  14. Manu Petit seems to agree the spending limit is pitiful (he says £60 million)
    Then what would he know

    Gareth Bale is being touted at £200 million
    We may be able to buy a pair of boots for him !
    Dream on sunshine

  15. Manu Petit seems to agree the spending limit is pitiful (he says £60 million)
    Then what would he know

    Gareth Bale is being touted at £200 million
    We may be able to buy a pair of boots for him !
    Dream on sunshine

  16. On Topic:
    Lucas certainly looked like he could handle himself in the box. However with our current attackers, wedging him in would be difficult. He is an experienced player who should get more games than Arsenal appear to be able to offer him

    Solution: Work out move to a decent club.

    Off Topic:
    @polo, some retired ex-premiership defenders seem to think what Ramos did was “excellent defending”. Salah would do well to add some self-preservation evasive maneuvers to his game. That’s how Messi has avoided been crippled by Ramos while also getting him red carded on a number of occassions

  17. None of you know anything about AFC’s budget this coming transfer window……all guesswork and idle speculation.

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