Matteo Guendouzi of Arsenal signs for Marseille, Junior Firpo of Barca joins Leeds

Arsenal's French midfielder Matteo Guendouzi gestures to supporters as he leaves after the English Premier League football match between Burnley and Arsenal at Turf Moor in Burnley, north west England on February 2, 2020. - The game finished 0-0. (Photo by Oli SCARFF / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or 'live' services. Online in-match use limited to 120 images. An additional 40 images may be used in extra time. No video emulation. Social media in-match use limited to 120 images. An additional 40 images may be used in extra time. No use in betting publications, games or single club/league/player publications. / (Photo by OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images)

Matteo Guendouzi has returned to France to play for Marseille on a season-long loan deal from Arsenal where he has not been able to establish himself, especially under coach Mikel Arteta.

Before Arteta became the coach of Arsenal in the summer of 2019, Matteo Guendouzi was one of the most promising talents at the club. He was enjoying his game under Unai Emery but when Arteta came, things became different for the 22-year-old French midfielder.

He got so frustrated that he had to go on loan at Hertha BSC in German Bundesliga on October 5, 2020. Guendouzi spent the entire season at the German side and expected that he would be accepted when he returns to Arsenal ahead of the 2021-2022 season.

Matteo Guendouzi of Arsenal signs for Marseille,  Junior Firpo of Barca joins Leeds
File photo of Matteo Guendouzi.

Unfortunately for him, Mikel Arteta did not deem him fit to be a part of his plans for the coming season, hence, he had to join the French Ligue 1 side, Marseille for the rest of the 2021-2022 season.

A Marseille statement confirming the loan move read: “Guendouzi is a modern midfielder, technically strong and with good passing quality.

“A player of character, he has a good vision of the game. These qualities he will undoubtedly be able to share with the Olympic Marseille team.”

Before things got so bad for Matteo Guendouzi at Arsenal, the 22-year-old midfielder who joined Arsenal from FC Lorient on July 11, 2018, made 82 appearances for Arsenal in which he scored a goal.

He still has over two seasons left on his contract with Arsenal which means that immediately after his loan move to Marseille expires on June 30, 2022, he might return to Arsenal to see out his current contract.

However, Matteo Guendouzi would wish not to return to Arsenal since he was not given the chance to develop as much as he wanted. Hence, he might use his loan spell at Marseille to convince the French side to offer him a permanent deal.

Meanwhile, Junior Firpo has left FC Barcelona to join Premier League side, Leeds United for a transfer fee worth ยฃ12.8 million.

Junior Firpo.

The 24-year-old Spanish full-back signed a four-year deal with Leeds United after he failed to establish himself at Barcelona.

He became one of the players that the club decided to sell to generate funds to execute Lionel Messi’s contract extension.

Messi is currently without a deal with Barcelona and the Spanish side have been working round the clock to ensure that they retain the 34-year-old football icon. They can only do that if they can cut down on their wage bill which they are trying to do by selling off unneeded players.

Aside from Junior Firpo, Barcelona are trying to get rid of Samuel Umtiti and Miralem Pjanic, and loan out Philippe Coutinho in an attempt to cut down on their wage bill for Messi.


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