Joel Campbell has revealed that Arsenal's decision to send him on loan was on his own request and that Arsene Wenger wanted him to stay for the rest of the season. The Costa Rican forward has moved to Sporting Clube de Portugal for the campaign, which is his fifth loan move since joining the Emirates.
Campbell has previously been sent to Lorient, Real Betis, Olympiacos and Villarreal, where he has gained some valuable experience, but says that his insistence on leaving was down to the fact that he may not be getting enough game time. The 24-year-old made only 19 appearances in the league last season and was left out of the matchday squad against Leicester City last weekend.
The Gunners are likely to strengthen this summer with a deal for Lucas Perez on the horizon and Serge Gnabry coming back after a productive Olympics campaign with Germany. The 21-year-old was the joint top scorer in the competition and led Germany to the finals, where they were defeated by Brazil in a penalty shoot-out. Campbell, therefore, stated that he pushed for a transfer for guaranteed time on the pitch, which was not available with the Gunners.
"I have taken the decision because I'm at an important stage in my football life. I think I'm in an ideal age to grow. When I realised I was not going to play as much as I wanted I thought it would be better to go on loan. Going on loan has been on my request," Campbell told Nacion.
On the multiple loans at Arsenal, he added: "This situation very positive because the truth is that the loans were given not because they have sent me, it is because I have asked, I am an ambitious person I want to play and love football. I do not really feel comfortable not playing Sunday to Sunday, I'm not a conformist.
"Another person could be at Arsenal, have their good salary in a good city without playing, but I prefer to leave the comfort aside and fight for my dreams. I want to prove my worth by playing regularly.''