Arsenal news: Barcelona midfielder Denis Suarez admits he was ‘not even 50 per cent’ fit during Emirates loan spell

14 Jun

Denis Suarez has opened up about his terrible loan spell with Arsenal and how the last year has been one ‘to forget’.

Suarez played just two Premier League games after joining in January from Barcelona.

Denis Suárez played just two Premier League games for Arsenal
Getty

The 25-year-old admitted he was never fully fit at the Gunners and did not live up to his billing.

Unai Emery worked with the midfielder at Sevilla and brought him to the Emirates, but a groin injury held him back.

Suarez told Spanish Radio station Cadena SER: “I’m still recovering from the injury, I’m practically fully recovered.

Denis Suarez joined Arsenal on loan from Barcelona in January
Getty

“On the 16th day of arriving at Arsenal I was not even 50 per cent, it was a year to forget but also to learn.

“I have been in Barcelona for two months recovering from the injury and nobody from Barca has told me anything.”

Suarez signed a new contract with Barcelona before heading to Arsenal in a temporary switch.

The LaLiga club did not want him to leave on loan and then come back in the summer with just a year left on his deal as it would drop his market value.

His current deal does not end until June 2021, but he wants to go somewhere where he can play.

Suarez added: “I have two years left at Barcelona. I renewed my contact before I left. What I want is to play.

 

“At Barcelona I think I’m not going to have the opportunity to participate regularly and what I want is to leave and to play.

“Where? I don’t know. Wherever is best for me. I have to look at everything. My idea is to stay in the Spanish League, to be near home and compete in La Liga.

“The experience of the Premier League, which is a league I love, didn’t go well because of the injury and I prefer to continue my career in Spain if I can.”

Wilfried Zaha: How wantaway Crystal Palace star could look at Arsenal, Tottenham Hotspur, Liverpool and Borussia Dortmund

16 May

Wilfried Zaha’s apparent desire to leave Crystal Palace to play Champions League is likely to attract plenty of potential suitors.

Like a shark and blood, the Ivorian’s admission is likely to lure some of the biggest clubs in Europe to the bidding table this summer.

Zaha has reportedly told Crystal Palace he wants to leave this summer

According to the Daily Mail, Zaha met with Palace chairman Steve Parish this week and reaffirmed his desire to leave the club this summer.

Having scored ten goals and registered five assists in the English top-flight, clubs may perhaps be a tad reluctant to splash the cash on the 26-year-old.

Especially considering the south Londoners have slapped an £80million price tag on their star man, who came through the academy system.

After a disastrous 18-month spell at Manchester United, the winger returned to Selhurst Park in 2015 on a permanent deal.

Roy Hodgson has admitted he is powerless to stop Wilfried Zaha joining a bigger club

His desire to play Champions League football almost certainly rules out a return to Old Trafford, but there are no shortage of domestic destinations for Zaha.

North London rivals Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal are reportedly keen on Zaha, while Bundesliga giants Borussia Dortmund also want to prise the forward away from Palace.

So how could Zaha look at his potential new clubs, should he get his lucrative move this summer?

Scroll down to see the potential XI’s.

Arsenal

Although Champions League qualification depends on winning the Europa League Final for the Gunners, Unai Emery’s record in the competition speaks volumes.

Throughout last season, the Spaniard spoke of signing wingers for his side but ended up finding success with a 3-4-1-2 formation which relied on wing backs.

Zaha has added goals and assists to his game and has the trickery and pace to play in a No.10 role behind the lethal duo of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette.

Could Zaha thrive behind Aubameyang and Lacazette?
BuildLineup.com

Tottenham Hotspur

As mentioned previously, Tottenham have a long-standing interest in Zaha which stretches back to the summer of 2016.

Spurs have not dipped into the transfer market since signing Lucas Moura in January 2018. Given how much game time and how successful the Brazilian has been, Zaha must surely be salivating at the possibility of working with Mauricio Pochettino.

Regardless of what happens in the Champions League Final, the Argentine will want to continue his development in north London and a marquee signing like the Crystal Palace star could be the way forward.

Zaha could inject more pace a trickery into Spurs’ frontline

Liverpool

Although fans may be surprised to see the Reds linked with Zaha, whispers have developed into a gradual crescendo given the speculation surrounding Sadio Mane.

The Senegal striker is a target for Real Madrid and could be tempted after five years in England. His role on the left-hand side of Liverpool’s attack has allowed him to develop his game in a way Zaha will surely be envious of.

In order to develop, the Ivory Coast international must become more consistent and develop his game in the way Mane has in order to make this move work.

Is Zaha the perfect replacement for Mane?

Borussia Dortmund

Under Lucien Favre, Dortmund have pushed Bayern Munich in the race to be crowned Bundesliga champions and their style of play is a huge factor in that.

With Axel Witsel and Thomas Delaney anchoring the midfield, Dortmund attack through Marco Reus and have unleashed Jadon Sancho to great effect.

With Zaha swapping wings and potentially even playing up front at times, Dortmund could be a serious threat in the Champions League next season.

Sancho and Zaha on the wings is an exciting prospect

Arsenal news: Fans mock UEFA as flop Denis Suarez is used to promote Europa League final in Baku

16 May

UEFA have been mocked by Arsenal fans for including Denis Suarez in their Europa League final promotional posters in Baku.

The Barcelona midfielder has endured a frustrating loan spell at the Emirates, making just six substitute appearances before a groin injury ended his season.

Denis Suarez made it on to UEFA’s Europa League final posters in Baku, despite barely featuring for Arsenal
Getty

And despite making just two cameos in the Gunners’ road to the final, which takes place against Chelsea on May 29, he is front and centre on posters with Mesut Ozil and Alexandre Lacazette.

After missing out on a top four spot in the Premier League, Arsenal will qualify for next season’s Champions League if they beat the Blues.

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Controversy has surrounded the location of the Europa League final with Arsenal and Chelsea fans, who have been allocated just 6,000 tickets each, warned of terror attacks in Azerbaijan by the Foreign Office.

The Gunners also plan to leave Armenia captain Henrikh Mkhitaryan at home if UEFA fail to provide assurances over his safety.

The fears of Mkhitaryan’s safety are down to ongoing political tensions between Azerbaijan and Armenia.

And Arsenal fans have been further angered by seeing Suarez’s face on UEFA posters leading up to the game.

Here is how some fans reacted on Twitter…

How Arsenal flop Denis Suarez can win FIVE trophies this season, including the Champions League and Europa League

6 May

Denis Suarez could end the season with FIVE trophies, despite his disastrous spell at Arsenal.

The Barcelona midfielder joined the Gunners on loan in north London with a view to getting a permanent deal in the summer.

With Aaron Ramsey joining Juventus in the summer, manager Unai Emery knew he had to replace the Wales international’s creative talents.

Denis Suarez proved to be a costly mistake for Arsenal

However, injury prevented the 25-year-old Suarez from living up to the lofty expectations surrounding him and ended up costing the Gunners roughly £28,105 per minute.

Yet Spanish news outlet Sport claim Suarez can still end the season with an incredible five trophies for his exploits in Spain and England this season.

The midfielder featured in Barcelona’s triumphant Supercopa de Espana campaign at the start of the season, as well as making appearances in LaLiga for the newly-crowned champions.

Should Barcelona prevail in the Champions League, Suarez will also get a winners medal for making appearances in the group stage against Tottenham Hotspur and PSV Eindhoven.

The midfielder in Copa del Rey action for Barcelona earlier in the season

Before his move to Arsenal, Suarez also made four appearances in the Copa del Rey – a trophy Ernesto Valverde will hope to lift when they face Valencia later this month.

And Suarez also made appearances for the Gunners in the Europa League, with the Premier League side on course to reach the final in Baku after a 3-1 win over Valencia last week.

Despite his potentially trophy-laden season, he made the announcement on Twitter that he would not be playing again this season.

“Today [Monday], I want you to know that I will not play again this season,” Suarez wrote.

“Some problems in the pubis have complicated my work since the game against BATE Borisov in [the] Europa League in February and now they force me to stop.

“The conclusion is that I cannot continue to force more and I have started a treatment that is incompatible with the competition.

“I feel that all the effort and sacrifice that I made to come to Arsenal has not had the expected result and you cannot imagine the anger I feel, but health comes first.

“I want to thank again such a great club for trusting me, although things have not gone as the two parties dreamed.”

‘Who was more pointless? Kim Kallstrom or Denis Suarez?’ Arsenal fans compare two flops as Spaniard announces his season is over

29 Apr

Denis Suarez’s spell at Arsenal appears to have gone down with a whimper after it was announced he will miss the rest of the season with a groin injury.

The midfielder joined the Gunners on loan in January to help them make a push for the Champions League spots.

Suarez’s time at Arsenal has been a disaster


Arsenal are two points off fourth with two games left but Suarez’s contribution has been limited to say the least.

He has made just six substitute appearances for Unai Emery’s side, scoring no goals and providing no assists.

In an emotional statement on Twitter, Suarez said: “I want you all to know that I will not be able to play again this season.

“Some issues with my groin have made things tough since the game against BATE Boris [sic] in the Europa League in February and now they have forced me to stop training altogether.

“After various medical consultations, the conclusion has been reached that I cannot keep on pushing it and I have started a period of treatment that cannot be done alongside competitive football.

“I am sorry that all the effort and sacrifice made to come to Arsenal hasn’t come to fruition as hoped and you can’t even imagine how angry I am about it, but health comes first.

“I want to give my thanks again to such a big club for trusting in me although things haven’t gone as we pictured they would.

“I am stepping aside but I am grateful for the messages of care and support that you all have sent to me every day.

“This will be where I take my strength from in order to return strong[er] than ever and even more determined.”

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Where he will return is not clear but it’s unlikely Arsenal will pay his £20million release clause from Barcelona as they don’t know what they’re buying to some extent.

Suarez’s injury got many Gooners thinking though – does this make him worse than Kim Kallstrom?

Kallstrom was brought to the club in the second half of the 2013/14 campaign but picked up an injury the day after he signed on loan, making just three appearances for them.

Arsenal fans couldn’t help but compare Suarez to Kallstrom

He did score in the penalty shootout FA Cup semi-finals on route to Arsenal winning their first trophy in nine years, so quite a few Gunners supporters argue that the Swede made more of an impact than Suarez.

Below you can see the best tweets comparing Suarez and Kallstrom from these Arsenal fans.

Denis Suarez: How much Arsenal have paid January loan signing for every minute he has played since joining Gunners

2 Apr

Denis Suarez’s January move to Arsenal has not turned out as expected.

It was always something of a surprise the Gunners opted to sign another creative attacking midfielder given their squad already includes the likes of Mesut Ozil, Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Alex Iwobi, but clearly Unai Emery, the manager, thought highly of a player he worked with while in charge of Sevilla.

Arsenal spent a long time chasing Suarez, but it’s all been for nothing really

Arsenal agreed a deal with Barcelona to sign Suarez on loan for the remainder of the season, with the north London club able to sign him permanently this summer.

Given how Suarez’s spell at the Emirates has gone, Arsenal are reportedly unwilling to trigger the buy option for the Spain international.

But even without signing Suarez permanently, Arsenal will have splashed some serious cash on him by the time his loan deal in north London comes to an end.

According to The Times, Arsenal spent a loan fee of £2.17million to sign Suarez, and are also paying the player around £55,000-per-week.

This means he has so far cost the club £2.67million – or £28,105 per minute played!

Suarez has still not started a single match for Arsenal – aside from a friendly against Al-Nasr in Dubai – with all six of his appearances for the Gunners coming from the bench.

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He hasn’t even made it off the bench in five of the 11 fixtures in which he has been selected by Emery.

In total, Suarez has played 28 minutes of Europa League football and 67 minutes of Premier League football since joining Arsenal – coming in at a lowly 95 minutes play time across all competitions.

Given Arsenal are in a fierce fight to finish inside the top four, it’s unlikely Emery will risk playing Suarez throughout the final weeks of the season as he has shown little to suggest he is ready for Premier League football.

Emery has previously claimed Suarez has not adapted to English football

Incredibly, it is quite realistic that Suarez will get sent back to Barcelona at the end of the season having not started a single match for his loan club, raising the question again of just why Arsenal decided to sign him earlier this year.

Al-Nasr vs Arsenal team news: Confirmed Gunners line-up for mid-season friendly as Denis Suarez makes first start

26 Mar

Unai Emery has selected a strong team for Arsenal’s mid-season friendly in Dubai.

The Gunners take on Al-Nasr this afternoon as part of a warm-weather training camp, as the north Londoners enjoy a break from domestic action with international football in full swing.

Arsenal left for Dubai last week, with Emery’s squad made up of both senior and youth players

A number of Arsenal’s senior players travelled to Dubai as part of the training squad, and Bernd Leno, Shkodran Mustafi, Mesut Ozil and Alexandre Lacazette have all been selected to start against Al-Nasr.

There is also a first start for Denis Suarez following his January loan move from Barcelona.

Suarez has not enjoyed his time at Arsenal so far

Suarez has struggled to adapt to English football since penning a temporary deal with the Gunners, and there are even suggestions they may cancel his loan and send him back to Camp Nou.

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Fellow senior players Petr Cech, Laurent Koscielny and Ainsley Maitland-Niles have been named among the substitutes.

Confirmed Al-Nasr vs Arsenal line-ups

Al-Nasr: To follow

Subs: To follow

Arsenal: Leno; Jenkinson, Mustafi, Mavropanos, Medley; Gilmour, Sheaf, Amaechi, Ozil, Suarez; Lacazette

Subs: Cech, Koscielny, Maitland-Niles, Pleguezuelo, Osei-Tutu, Thompson, Olayinka, John-Jules

Arsenal loan flop Denis Suarez hits back at critics on Twitter – ‘Don’t talk about my workouts if you have no idea’

23 Mar

Arsenal’s flopped loan signing Denis Suarez has hit back at his critics on social media.

The Barcelona midfielder has failed to hit the ground running since joining Arsenal on loan in January, making just six substitute appearances.

Denis Suarez is yet to start a game for Arsenal

Gunners boss Unai Emery, who worked with Suarez at Sevilla during the 2014/15 season, has been reluctant to start the 25-year-old over fears he can’t cope with the ‘physical demands of English football’.

And the club are reportedly set to send the Spaniard back to Barcelona at the end of the season, opting not to take up an £18million option to buy him.

Instead, Emery could target Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Christopher Nkunku.

Suarez’s struggling loan spell has led to claims he has failed to impress his manager in training, but he appeared to deny those suggestions in a social media post.

In a video clip uploaded on Twitter, it shows the Spain international scoring a fine goal past Petr Cech in a training session in Dubai.

The caption reads: “Working hard, learning and improving. PD: dont (sic) talk about my workouts if you have no idea.”

Suarez is behind Lucas Torreira, Matteo Guendouzi and Granit Xhaka in the midfield pecking order.

Denis Suarez: Arsenal midfielder still not ready to play 90 minutes, Gunners boss Unai Emery reveals

26 Feb

Unai Emery has revealed midfielder Denis Suarez is still not ready to play 90 minutes following his January move to Arsenal.

Suarez, 25, moved to the Emirates Stadium on deadline day on a loan deal until the end of the season.

Denis Suarez has found game time hard to come by since joining Arsenal

However, he has played just 66 minutes of football since penning terms with the Gunners on a deal that also includes an option for the north Londoners to buy him outright this summer.

He has not just been afforded a first start for his new club, though Suarez’s full debut could come on Wednesday night with Bournemouth’s visit to the Emirates.

But, even if he does start against the Cherries, Emery doubts he will be able to see out the entire match.

“I am very demanding of myself to find the best performance with the players,” the Spanish coach said.

Emery (middle row, second right) and Suarez (bottom row, second right) previously worked together at Sevilla

“I think Denis Suarez is improving first with the adaptation every day and then his quality can give us a lot.

“I think it’s not OK today to play 90 minutes because he needs rhythm, but one possibility is to start tomorrow knowing that. Or, stay on the bench and after he can help us.”

Emery would not be drawn on whether he wants to activate the option to bring Suarez in permanently in the summer, insisting plenty can change for the player before a decision has to be made.

“For me, it’s so far away,” he said when asked about Suarez joining on a permanent basis.

“The football, each match, each week, can change a lot. We are in every match, we are doing a test on everybody.

“My test like a coach is tomorrow and the players are the same. Our demands are very big demands.

“To work hard, to be with focus for each match to show us and show you, the players, the coaches, that we can improve and we can be better every day. For me, the summer is so far away.

Emery’s side can move four points clear of fifth place with a win on Wednesday

“He is working every day, improving and knowing us. My philosophy is that adaptation needs time and after, little by little he will grow confidence and know his team-mates in training and after playing matches.

“For him, all the minutes he can get to help us are very important. On Sunday, for example, my idea was to give him some minutes, but after recent injuries, I cannot give him these minutes. But tomorrow is another opportunity.”

Denis Suarez: Arsenal manager Unai Emery’s response when asked if January signing will start vs Huddersfield

7 Feb

Unai Emery has refused to confirm whether Denis Suarez will start Arsenal’s next Premier League match, also revealing the deadline day signing trained alone on Monday.

Arsenal confirmed the loan capture of Barcelona midfielder Suarez on the final day of the January transfer window, and he debuted three days later as a second half substitute in the Gunners’ defeat by Manchester City.

Suarez featured as a substitute against Manchester City

Having now trained for a full week with his new team, many believe Suarez was in the frame for his first start on Saturday, when Emery takes his side to bottom team Huddersfield hoping to secure a win that could move Arsenal back into the Premier League’s top four.

However, Emery refused to confirm whether Suarez will be named in the starting line-up on Saturday, appearing to suggest the 25-year-old was not up to scratch upon his arrival at the Emirates.

Emery also revealed Suarez trained by himself on Monday as he works to reach the required level to be a part of this Arsenal squad.

Speaking in a press conference, Emery said: “His [Suarez’s] adaptation to us and also on Sunday in 25 minutes, in the first days with us, is not with good performance.

“This week he worked Monday alone here with our coaches and also yesterday and today he’s working with a different adaptation, better than last week. I hope he’s continuing to improve every day.

“Then he can show in the next matches how he can help us, better than in the first match against Manchester City.”

Huddersfield are without a win since November and have lost 12 of their previous 13 matches.

Given the Terriers’ woeful form, Emery admits Saturday’s match is a must-win for his team.

“Yes [it is a must win],” the Spaniard continued.

Emery’s side have struggled for consistency over the past month

“We started very well away, changing our mentality, but now we need to recover this confidence, to recover this performance and the next opportunity is Saturday against Huddersfield.

“But it is difficult. These matches are difficult and they are playing for the possibility to continue in the Premier League.

“Their last results have not been good but with their new coach [Jan Siewert], I am sure that they are going to play with a big ambition and a big performance on Saturday.”