• Premier League

Arsenal's Campbell caught up in bizarre agent row

ESPN staff
July 5, 2014
Joel Campbell is thought to be keen on a return to London © Getty Images

Arsenal striker Joel Campbell has been angered by an Italian agent who reportedly claimed to represent him.

Campbell, who has impressed for Costa Rica at this summer's World Cup, had been touted for a £16 million move to Italy by agent Ruggero Lacerenza.

Arsenal and Spurs face tussle over Veltman

  • North London rivals Arsenal and Tottenham face a summer battle to sign Netherlands centre-back Joel Veltman, according to the Mirror.
  • The newspaper reports Veltman, who is part of Louis Van Gaal's Dutch squad vying for a World Cup semi-final spot in Brazil, has long been a target for Tottenham, but Thomas Vermaelen's uncertain future at the Emirates has since put Arsenal on high alert.
  • Vermaelen has been sounded out as a possible replacement for Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic at Manchester United and the Mirror claims the club are closing in on a £10 million deal.
  • Vermaelen has fallen behind Laurent Koscielny and Per Mertesacker in the Arsenal pecking order and will be out of contract next season. United want to tie up a deal as soon as Belgium's World Cup is over; they face Argentina in Saturday's quarter-final.

However, Campbell's real agent Joaquim Batica has dismissed Lacerenza's claims and told SunSport his client has no plans on leaving Arsenal.

"Joel has never met this man and doesn't have a clue who he is," Batica is quoted by the newspaper. "He does not represent his interests. I do. In fact, while here in Brazil, not once has Joel thought about going anywhere. He's been purely focused on helping Costa Rica at this tournament.

"The last thing on his mind at the moment is leaving Arsenal. He's living his dream of playing at a World Cup in Brazil and cannot wait to take on the Dutch [in Saturday's quarter-final].

"There are lots of people who have been in contact with me trying to engineer moves to different clubs, but none of them have authorisation from Joel or his family.

"So everybody should be wary of anyone claiming to be representing him. This man is misleading people, he has nothing to do with us.

"These third-party people really do muddy the waters as far as we're concerned. Arsenal know who they are dealing with but other clubs don't."

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger recently hinted he is prepared to give Campbell his chance this season, with the 21-year-old having shown fine form last season at loan-club Olympiakos.

Campbell has continued to turn heads in Brazil this summer and, having resolved a work permit issue, is keen to return to London.

Batica said: "Once this amazing adventure here is over, Joel is heading to London.He has always wanted to play in the Premier League and Arsenal is his club."

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