- Joel Campbell has joined Sporting Lisbon on loan for the season
- Campbell impressed at times last season, scoring four times in 30 games
- But there is no room for him in Arsene Wenger’s first-team squad
- Arsenal want him to gain more Champions League experience in Portugal
Jonny Singer for MailOnline
Arsenal winger Joel Campbell has joined Sporting Lisbon on a season-long loan after failing to find a place in Arsene Wenger’s first-team plans.
The 24-year-old was at the club last season after four previous loan deals in four years, and impressed in patches, but has not done enough to earn a first-team place.
And he has now joined the Portuguese side, who finished second in the top-flight last season, in the hope of firing them back to a first title since 2002.
Arsenal winger Joel Campbell has joined Sporting Lisbon on a season-long loan
Campbell poses with Sporting president Bruno de Carvalho after joining the club
JOEL CAMPBELL’S CAREER
2011- Arsenal 40 games (4 goals)
2011-12 Lorient (loan) 25 (3)
2012-13 Real Betis (loan) 28 (2)
2013-14 Olympiacos (loan) 37 (9)
2015 Villarreall (loan) 22 (1)
The player revealed the deal on Twitter on Sunday morning, tweeting ‘you should sign Joel Campbell!! @Sporting_CP’, before the club replied ‘challenge accepted’ with a picture of him in their kit.
Campbell scored four times last season in 30 games, starting 11 times in the Premier League as Arsenal finished second behind Leicester.
But the emergence of Alex Iwobi, as well as a return to fitness for Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Theo Walcott and Santi Cazorla mean his playing time was likely to be limited at The Emirates.
And the club hope that the Costa Rican forward will benefit from another loan spell, playing Champions League football and fighting for a league title.
He has previously spent time on loan at Lorient, Real Betis, Olympiacos and Villarreal since joining the north London club in 2011.
Despite an impressive showing for the Gunners last season, Wenger is yet to be convinced by the Costa Rica international and another season away from the club could suit all three parties.
Campbell should play regular football for Sporting and he will also be re-united with his national team-mate – former Fulham midfielder Bryan Ruiz.
The 24-year-old’s departure could mean that German starlet Serge Gnabry will now be given the opportunity to fight for a first team place in north London after his impressive showing at the Rio Olympics.
Campbell impressed at times last season, but is not part of Arsenal’s first-team set-up
The Costa Rican scored four times in his 30 games, but has fallen down the pecking order
Campbell has been in pre-season training with Arsenal, but is not in Arsene Wenger’s plans
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