London (AFP) – Under-fire Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has been dealt a blow with news that key ally and transfer negotiator Dick Law is to leave the troubled Premier League giants.
Law — who has along with Wenger been severely criticised for the club’s transfer policy over the past few years — had surprised many when he remained in his post in the close season as back in May it had been stated he would leave.
However, Press Association Sport now claims Law is indeed leaving, after eight years dealing with transfers, to return to the United States for family reasons.
The club appointed Huss Fahmy, formerly of cycling outfit Team Sky, in June to work alongside Law — chiefly on player contracts although it is not clear whether he will now assume the role on his own.
Wenger has borne the brunt of the criticism over his refusal to enter bidding wars with his major domestic rivals.
Instead in years gone by he has left it to the last minute to make late signings which have looked like panic buys. This year, however, he acted relatively fast by snapping up French striker Alexandre Lacazette for a club record fee of £52 million ($68m, 58m euros), but the only other new face was Bosnian defender Sead Kolasinac on a free transfer.
A seemingly constant haemorrhaging of talent — Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain being the latest example opting to move to Liverpool — has also agitated the Gunners fans although the club refused to allow star Chilean Alexis Sanchez to leave for Manchester City on the final day of the transfer window.
They face, though, letting the 28-year-old go for free at then end of this season when his contract is up — something with which Wenger said he was comfortable.
However, the fans, according to the London Evening Standard, are far from happy and plan to stage a protest regarding the transfer policy during Saturday’s Premier League game with Bournemouth.
On that note chief executive Ivan Gazidis is going to meet with some of them ahead of the game.
The Gunners go into the game, against a side yet to register a point, having lost two of their three league games so far.