Former West Brom manager Tony Pulis believes Arsene Wenger is to blame for Serge Gnabry’s premature Arsenal exit.
The Bayern Munich winger endured a difficult spell at The Hawthorns early on in his career. He joined the Midlands side ahead of the 2015/16 campaign but made just three appearances for the club before being recalled from loan.
The 27-year-old rejuvenated his career in the Bundesliga, excelling at Werder Bremen and Hoffenheim before getting his big-money move to Bayern Munich.
He has been an important part of their success down the years, scoring 74 goals in just under 200 matches for the German giants.
Gunners fans have often lamented Wenger’s decision to allow him to leave the Emirates, questioning both his and Pulis’ failure to recognise Gnabry’s talent.
However, the former Stoke City manager has claimed that the blame should lie with the former Arsenal boss.
Pulis blames Wenger for Gnabry exit
Speaking to the Under the Cosh podcast, Pulis said: “I always get this thrown at me, but what people forget is that we had him [Gnabry] on loan, Arsenal were his mother club, and Arsene Wenger was his manager and he sold him to Werder Bremen for £7 million.
“He had him right from 14 all the way through, I only had him for a couple of months.”
Pulis can now acknowledge Gnabry’s ability, but remains in complete disbelief of the forward’s drastic turnaround, revealing that his staff joked that the Germany international ‘must be his twin brother’.
He recalls one particular game where he failed to have an impact, stating: “He has done fantastically well now, you have to hold your hands up, but at the time he was nowhere near it.
“He was brought off in a reserve game. I wasn’t there but they played Aston Villa on a Monday night and the reserve coach, who is at Sheffield Wednesday with Darren [Moore] now, brought him off.
“He said he never tried a leg, he stood out wide, he flicked it up a few times and that was it.
“He has gone on to great things and done fantastically well. I remember ringing Kempy (Dave Kemp, former West Brom assistant manager) and saying he has gone to Bayern Munich, and Kempy said it must be his twin brother, it can’t be the player we had.
“Ask any Albion players at the time if they thought he would have gone on to what he has done, not a chance, but supporters can’t work that out.
“He has done brilliant, and it was most probably the best thing that happened to him. He probably went back thinking if I can’t make an impression at West Brom, and Arsenal have sold me, I better pick myself up and have a go.”