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Arsenal confirm head of recruitment Sven Mislintat is leaving the club

Mislintat joined Arsenal from Borussia Dortmund in November 2017 and will depart on 8 February, after less than 14 months in north London

Luke Brown
Monday 21 January 2019 15:06 GMT
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Arsenal: A look back at 2018

Arsenal have confirmed that head of recruitment Sven Mislintat is leaving the club next month.

Mislintat joined Arsenal from Borussia Dortmund in November 2017 and will depart on 8 February, after less than 14 months in north London.

In a short statement on their website, Arsenal praised Mislintat for “a truly outstanding job in helping us recruit players who are making a big impact now and will do so even more in the future”.

Mislintat played a key role in the transfer of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang from Dortmund to Arsenal last January, while also leading the club’s successful bids for Lucas Torreira from Sampdoria and Matteo Guendouzi from Lorient.

“It's been an amazing experience to work at a great club like Arsenal in what has been a big time of change,” Mislintat said.

“I am excited about what the future holds for the club and am looking forward to new challenges for myself.”

Mislintat was appointed as Arsenal’s head of recruitment by former chief executive Ivan Gazidis, with the club declaring they had signed “one of Europe’s most respected player recruitment experts”.

He hit the ground running in helping the club to sign Aubameyang, but Gazidis’ surprise decision to quit the club for AC Milan left Mislintat increasingly marginalised.

Sources close to the Arsenal set-up say that the relationship between Mislintat and the new regime – headed by head of football Raul Sanllehi, promoted after Gazidis’ departure – had not gone as smoothly as anticipated.

Mislintat put forward some strong recommendations for players that were been followed up, and was surprised with the active role new head coach Unai Emery played in identifying transfer targets.

The Spaniard is said to have taken a more active role regarding transfer targets than Mislintat had anticipated, especially in a structure that was designed to dilute the influence of any head coach in that regard, after the all-encompassing power of Arsene Wenger.

Other players to join Arsenal during Mislintat’s time at the club include defender Sokratis Papastathopoulos and goalkeeper Bernd Leno, both of whom have become first-team regulars.

Sven Mislintat has decided to quit his role with the club (Arsenal)

21-year-old defender Konstantinos Mavropanos was signed from Greek side PAS Giannina and is highly-rated by the club, while Henrikh Mykhitarayan was recruited from Borussia Dortmund as part of the deal taking Alexis Sanchez to Old Trafford.

Arsenal are currently in the process of attempting to recruit a technical director, which will take recruitment into its remit.

The Independent understands that contact was made with former midfielder Edu, who has since commented in the Brazilian press that he is content with his role with the national team.

Another former Arsenal midfielder, Marc Overmars, is also under consideration although will need to be convinced to leave his role as director of football at Ajax.

For the full story of Mislintat’s shock exit, click here.

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