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TBR View: Betis links sign of how far Bellerin's fallen

Hector Bellerin has earned links with a move to Real Betis, and on the face of it, it’s a sign of the Arsenal defender’s fall from grace.

During the early years of his Gunners career, there was much hype around the full-back. He was credited with breaking Theo Walcott’s 40-yard sprint record. It was a sign of his blistering pace, which would prove useful during the early part of his career in the first team.

His rise to the top was completed after the 2015/2016 season when he was included in the Professional Footballers’ Association team of the year.

However, a string of injuries in recent seasons has seen him slow down over the years with the defender struggling.

The 26-year-old suffered a serious knee injury back in January 2019 during the 2-0 win over Chelsea. It would see him miss almost nine months of action with the former Barcelona man even admitting that he turned to alcohol as a result of his lay-off.

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His loss of pace has been evident for a while, however, not more so than during one-on-one scenarios. December’s defeat to Tottenham Hotspur was a huge sign of his fall from grace.

Bellerin got cooked all game long back during the loss when he was tasked with marking Heung-Min Son. The South Korean got the better of the Spain international time and time again in what proved to be a chastening experience for the £110k-p/w ace

However, another crucial part of his fall off from grace is his lack of ability on the ball. Anyone who’s watched an Arsenal game recently will know just how stuttery the ace is when he receives possession. Almost as it, he has no clue what to do.

It’s a wonder the former Catalan man has a pass accuracy of just over 83%, a display of his lack of ball-playing ability.

Links with a midtable Spanish side like Real Betis are a sign of how far Bellerin has fallen from grace. From PFA team of the year to struggling to hold down a starting place in the first team, he’s experienced it all at Arsenal.

A transfer away would benefit both the player and the club with the ace yearning for a fresh start in his career.

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