Arsenal midfielder Mattéo Guendouzi has poured more fuel to the fire on his strained relationship with Arsenal and club boss Mikel Arteta, or so some think.
The French U21 international, who spent the entirety of the 2020-21 season on loan with Bundesliga outfit Hertha Berlin, tweeted out his unwavering support for former manager Unai Emery after the Basque headmaster guided Villarreal to their first piece of major silverware when they bested Manchester United on penalties in the Europa League final.
I am honored and proud to have had the opportunity to evolve by your side. Words will never be strong enough to qualify your personality, your benevolence and your authenticity in human relationships.
— Matteo Guendouzi (@MatteoGuendouzi) May 27, 2021
There are some that have seen no issue with Guendouzi being public in his support and admiration of Emery, who gave the French youngster his breakout season at Arsenal to the tune of 33-appearances in his first year in north London. Guendouzi credits Emery as the man that helped him evolve as a young player under his stewardship, but that progress was halted after the appointment of Mikel Arteta after Emery’s sacking when the pair clashed over the Frenchman’s actions – and subsequent failure to hold himself accountable – for his actions against Brighton’s Neal Maupay during the 2019-20 Premier League season.
After remaining at loggerheads, Guendouzi was shipped out on loan to Hertha Berlin, and though he made 23-appearances for the Bundesliga outfit that saw Die Alte Dame struggle mightily in a season where so much more was expected with a project looking to get off the ground, there was much criticism of his lack of maturity. Such criticism’s mirrored the sentiment at Arsenal, and little progression on that front can certainly be viewed as a red flag.
Described as “volcanic” in a recent article by the Athletic, Guendouzi’s public display of support for Emery’s success and failure to show similar when Arsenal lifted the FA Cup last season or drove to the semi-finals of the Europa League this season has been taken as a shot across the Gunners bow.
In a summer where many expect Arsenal to institute a considerable squad overhaul, particularly through the spine, there may be no better time for the club to part ways with a talented young player that just has not worked out for various reasons. With the rumored interest from Ligue 1 outfit Olympique de Marseille, Guendouzi could be playing his trade elsewhere on a full-time basis sooner rather than later.