Arsenal promote football analyst Ben Knapper to loans manager – but only from February

Arsenal promote football analyst Ben Knapper to loans manager – but only from February

January 8, 2019

The Gunners are following  a rising trend in the Premier League of appointing a supremo to oversee the rising number of players out on loan.

England Under-21 striker Nelson. 19, is Arsenal's finest example – shining for Hoffenheim and hitting six Bundesliga goals this season.

The Gunners have six other players out on loan: Colombian keeper David Ospina (Napoli), Nigerian midfielder Kelechi Nwakali (Porto B), versatile England defender Calum Chambers (Fulham), 24-year-old keeper Matt Macey (Plymouth), Japan striker Takuma Asano (Hannover 96) and Krystian Bielik (Charlton).

Knapper is being promoted from bis role as lead analyst after joining the Gunners from sports data and technology company Prozone in 2010

His main roles will be to decide which players to loan out and where.


Nelson has show how it can be done best, adjusting so quickly to the German top-flight that he has reportedly been itching to return early to the Emirates for a shot at the Premier League this term.

Chelsea famously have at least 39 players out on loan, so it is not surprising they have TWO loan managers, their former international stars Tore Andre Flo and Paulo Ferreira.

Mason Mount, 19, seems to have been the Blues' youngster to profit most from a loan spell so far this season.

The stylish England Under-21 creator is a major reason why Derby are thriving in the Championship in their first campaign under Chelsea legend Frank Lampard.

Generally, though, the Blues and and Manchester City underline the dilemmas of stockpiling youngsters – who can become disoriented or detached, believing they have little chance of breaking into senior squads packed with expensive imports.

Such worries appear to be why Jadon Sancho quit City for Borussia Dortmund.

And it is certainly why Bayern Munich are persisting with their hunt for fellow 18-year-old wideman Callum Hudson-Odoi, despite Stamford Bridge chief Maurizio Sarri trying to reassure the Londoner he has a "great future" in England.

Meanwhile, Bournemouth have also just appointed their own loan boss, ex-Wales star Carl Fletcher, 38, who spent seven years in the Cherries' midfield.

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