Former Arsenal captain Tony Adams has revealed that club chief Edu messed up a deal for Jude Bellingham while he was at Birmingham City.
Club scouts had identified Bellingham as an outstanding prospect, and it’s fair to say they were right in their assessment as he’s gone on to establish himself as one of the finest talents in Europe.
Bellingham’s form at Birmingham also saw him linked with Manchester United and Liverpool before he ended up at Borussia Dortmund instead, and he’s shone in the Bundesliga and the Champions League as well as becoming a regular in Gareth Southgate’s England squad.
Adams spoke about Bellingham last year, however, and says the teenage sensation could’ve been an Arsenal player, only for the recommendation from club scouts getting lost in the transition of Edu taking over as technical director.
“I think it got lost this one in the transition of the chief scout,” Adams said.
“He was spotted very early on, not by me but by the Arsenal recruitment office. The chief scout was absolutely bowled over by him and the great prospect that he is.
“New sports director Edu came in from Brazil and had no European experience and no UK experience and I think it got lost in the transition.
“Unfortunately the chief scout had the deal kind of done but we missed that one. He’s a great talent but unfortunately he’s not joined the right club.”
Adams added: “They are the type of players we need to get hold of at the Arsenal if we’re ever going to develop and go forward.
“These kind of players we need to tie up, get them to the Arsenal and build a phenomenal league team. He’s a great talent but unfortunately he’s not joined the right club.”