Arsenal have officially confirmed the exit of Krystian Bielik. The 21-year-old has joined Derby County, with the Gunners receiving an initial £7.5 million, which could rise to £10 million, as reported by Sky Sports.
Bielik is an exciting signing for the Rams. The Polish defender impressed on loan with Charlton Athletic last season. He has huge potential and a lot of technical quality.
Bielik clearly was not part of Unai Emery’s future plans for Arsenal. However, given how highly rated he is, Bielik was for a long time thought to represent the future of the Gunners’ rearguard. It is somewhat surprising that he hasn’t been kept at the Emirates Stadium, for at least this season, to provide some back up to the first choice defenders.
Emery’s defensive contingent already lacks strength in depth, so Bielik’s presence may have been useful this summer. However, with him now out of the picture, the Spanish coach will look to other youngsters to step up and take his place.
Konstantinos Mavropanos has already made a number of appearances for the Arsenal first team. The 21-year-old Greek already has seven Premier League outings under his belt. However, his development was hampered by injury last season. He will be hoping for more game time this time around, and with Bielik out of the picture he is likely to get it.
Zech Medley is yet to be officially promoted to the first team at the Emirates Stadium. Despite this, Emery still handed him his senior first team debut last season. The 19-year-old is powerful, technically gifted and confident on the ball. It could well be that he has already been earmarked for more game time this season.
With Bielik now out of the way, both Medley and Mavropanos can hope for even more opportunities in north London.