Sky Sports report that Raul Sanllehi has left Arsenal Football Club, with Mikel Arteta and technical director Edu in charge of recruitment moving forward.
Since Arsene Wenger’s departure from Arsenal in May 2018, there have been so many structural changes taking place at Arsenal Head Offices, behind the scenes at London Colney.
These structural changes have never stopped as the Board of Executives at Arsenal are always shuffling things around but due to the financial difficulties, not only Arsenal but all organisations have been going through due to the coronavirus, this has caused these structural changes to become more prevalent and more widely talked about amongst the Arsenal fanbase across the past months.
With Raul Sanllehi stepping down as the Director of Football at Arsenal Football Club in the previous week, Arsenal look to move into a brighter spell in terms of success on and off the pitch post-coronavirus. The way in which they plan to make this work, behind the scenes, is through maintaining as much of the club’s self-sustaining model as possible.
Since Ivan Gadizis’ departure, Vinai Venkatesham has become the Managing Director of Arsenal Football Club. With his time being split between operations at Arsenal’s Training Centre at London Colney and Highbury House in Islington, Vinai will take on the role of ex-Director of Football – Raul Sanllehi.
Vinai will take a greater leadership role from that of what he had before the departure of Raul Sanllehi. This means that he will be involved a lot more directly with player negotiations.
Vinai was solely responsible alongside Raul when it came to the early morning negotiations with Mikel Arteta before he became the new Head Coach of Arsenal taking the reins from Interim Head Coach and Arsenal Football Club legend, Freddie Ljungberg.
Vinai was seen posed outside Mikel Arteta’s Manchester Apartment at 2:00am the morning after Arsenal lost 3-0 to Manchester City at the Emirates Stadium.
The fact that Vinai and Raul went in their tinted Mercedes box van to chase Mikel Arteta up the M6 that same evening tells you everything you need to know about the man at the helm of our transfer negotiations now, in Vinai.
Raul was ruthless but Vinai is just next level ruthless, he does not rest until a job is completed. As a fan of a football club you cannot ask for much more from your managing director.
After stepping down from the Brazil National Team last summer, Edu has been a tenacious figure, if the first 13 months as Arsenal’s Technical Director are anything to go from. Edu Gaspar has the knowledge and experience needed to take Arsenal Football Club back to the level they once were during his playing days in the Invincible season.
Through playing for the football club, Edu knows the direction the fans need this club to go and the Brazilian understands how impatient the fans are to see Arsenal back at the top as soon as possible.
His role as Technical Director is to oversee everything from daily life in Arsenal’s Training Centre at London Colney, Highbury House in Islington, Arsenal’s Academy Centre at Hale End and match-day at the Emirates Stadium.
When Edu initially joined Raul Sanllehi was asked: “Why was Edu Gaspar the suitable man to bring in?” Raul’s response was: “Because Edu is a true Arsenal man.” Edu, still to this day coordinates with the Arsenal first-team, the academy and player scouting to oversee strengthening of our Arsenal’s squad.
Since coming in 8 months ago, Mikel Arteta has not only rejuvenated the hopes within the Arsenal fans but he has rejuvenated the dull tactics and style of play that the players relied upon under Unai Emery and Freddie Ljungberg.
In terms of enhancing the team off the pitch, Mikel Arteta has been a huge asset in that process as well. The players that Mikel and his team have brought in and are continuing to bring in are not necessarily the world-class names that fans look for but more the players that Mikel Arteta needs to fill in the gaps whilst adding quality to his side.
Mikel and his team may have only brought in Pablo Mari, Cedric Soares and Willian at the point of writing this piece but in the pipeline, he may have completely convinced Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang to sign a new contract until 2023 after a number of Zoom calls with the Gabonese international, he had already convinced Granit Xhaka to stay after he was most certainly on his way out during Unai Emery’s era and if reports are correct he is very close to convincing Dani Ceballos not to return to Madrid for pre-season training but to come and join Arsenal on a permanent contract.
It is very evident that Mikel Arteta has a lot of pulling power despite being inexperienced not only because of this but because of the fact that deals for Gabriel Magalhães and Thomas Partey are in the pipeline to getting completed as well.
Through picking up the club’s 14th FA Cup, it was just a glimpse of what is to come for Mikel Arteta on the pitch and through the structural changes we have seen off the pitch, Arsenal fans hope that these changes bring good outcomes off the pitch too.