Believe it or not, Arsenal have done a lot of business in the lead up to this transfer window, be it recalling loan players or sending out some on loan. Some permanent deals have been agreed too, and similar to the case of Kris Olsson is 21-year old England Under-21 striker, Benik Afobe, who is reportedly undergoing a medical at a Championship club in view of joining them on a permanent switch.
Is it same Afobe who’s been on stunning form for MK Dons this season, his goal tally way into double figures, including those two that sent United packing from the League Cup? Surprised? Well, so am I.
The Dons have had quite an impressive season in League 1 and Saturday’s comeback 2 – 2 draw and Crawley Town has lifted them to third place and within three points of second place, with one game yet to be played, and to say Afobe has played a huge significant role in their strong challenge for promotion to the Championship is to state the obvious.
He was not involved at all, even on the bench, in the draw at Crawley and Dons’ manager, Karl Robinson, subsequently confirmed that he would most likely be making a move from the Stadium MK.
“BREAKING: Karl Robinson has confirmed that striker Benik Afobe is in talks with an unnamed club regarding a potential permanent move” according to a tweet after the game via @MKDonsFC, the MK Dons FC official twitter account.
“We can’t say who that’s to, but he’s having a medical somewhere and he is maybe moving onto other things. We wish him good luck” Robinson said.
Some sources have it that Huddersfield Town and Wolves could be the likeliest destinations.
This would come as a shock to many a Gooner as Afobe’s good performances over the past 6 months had looked enough to earn him an opportunity to prove himself at the Emirates when his loan at the MK runs out in June. The big strong lad has drawn some comparison with Ian Wright in the past but has not been given extended runs in the Arsenal first team, so a loan this season to a place where he could play regularly was inevitable.
Afobe has been part of the Arsenal academy since he was 8, making his first team bow in 2010. Several loan spells have followed since, the first being at Huddersfield Town that year and this season’s being his sixth. Some say when a manager really wants a player, he tends to stick with him at the club, perhaps a sign that Benik’s long term future has not always on Wenger’s mind.
His goal returns have been brilliant, even for a League One player, and one may ask why Arsenal have chosen to let him go permanently? Can he really not challenge some of our current strikers – Welbeck and Giroud – when he returns? It may be a little too hasty and presumptuous to suggest he could instantly replicate those in the Premier League as the demands are decidedly more rigorous up here.
Maybe there is really some truth in the whole Cavani-Dybala-etc rumours, eh?
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