Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has revealed that lack of opportunities at the Emirates saw him allow Isaac Hayden leave the club in the summer transfer window. He left the Gunners and joined Championship side Newcastle United on a permanent transfer on a five-year deal.
The 21-year-old came up through the ranks of the north London club's youth system and broke into their first team in 2013. However, failure to impress for the first team saw him join Hull City on a season-long loan deal last summer.
On his return to Arsenal, Hayden found out that he is not included in Wenger's plans for the 2016/17 season and the Frenchman sanctioned the player's sale. He is a versatile player, who can play as a centre-back or in the defensive midfield position.
Wenger admitted that he did not want Hayden to waste his career and thus sanctioned his sale to Newacastle this summer.
"He couldn't get the chance here and I decided to let him go and have an opportunity. At 21 years of age, you need to play or you stand still — and if you stand still you waste your career," Wenger told Arsenal's official website.
Wenger hailed Hayden as a "very intelligent" player and even confirmed that Hull were looking at the option of buying him on a permanent transfer. However, he snubbed advances from the Tigers to join Rafael Benitez at St James' Park.
"He's very intelligent and very good physically as well, he has good strength. I remember some games he played, like at West Brom in the League Cup where he did extremely well, and I gave him a chance to go up to Hull," the Gunners manager explained.
"It went quite well, they liked him and they wanted to buy him as well. I think Newcastle is a good opportunity for him."