Arsenal's Joel Campbell singled out by Spanish press as 'destined for greatness'

Barcelona V Betis

Arsenal loanee Joel Campbell has long been a player fans of the Gunners are excited about, now they have even more reason to be.

Joel Campbell was signed by Arsenal a couple of summers ago but is yet to get a chance in their colours to show his talent due to work permit issues.

So last season he was loaned out to French side Lorient in Ligue One, but it was a tough education for him - scoring just three times in 25 appearances.

It was in the international arena where he made the biggest impression, scoring for Costa Rica in a friendly against World champions Spain, which he followed up by netting against Aaron Ramsey's Wales.

This season he has been loaned to La Liga side Real Betis, who occupy an impressive eighth in the table upon their return to the top flight.

It took Campbell a little while to force his way into the first team reckoning, but the striker has started every game for his club in 2013.

The problem for him at present is he is going through a goal drought, he has only bagged two, and hasn't netted since January 13 in a 2-0 home win over Levante.

The flip side of the coin is that his overall performances have been impressive enough to see him lauded by top Spanish newspaper Marca.

The publication has singled him out along with six others as one of their 'seven young guns destined for greatness'. Among those also listed are Real Madrid centre-half Raphael Varane, Isco, and Chelsea's loan goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois.

Marca surmises that Campbell has 'shone' for Betis this season, adding that Arsene Wenger is more than likely to bring him back to Arsenal next season.

Among the attributes of Campbell's game which mark him out is his willingness to shoot - he has the third most shots per game of the whole Betis squad (which of course asks why he isn't converting more - but this is clearly for him to work on.)

Of players who have played more than five games for Betis; Campbell is the squad's most prolific dribbler, completing more successful runs with the ball than any of his teammates.

This has also counted against him because he has been fouled more times than any other Betis player because of the danger he poses with his willingness to take players on.

The coming months between now and the end of the season will tell Arsenal a lot about Campbell's character and whether he is ready to be a factor next season or not. In the middle of a goal drought, the striker needs to pull through and come out the other side on fine form.

Hopefully for his sake, this little confidence booster will help, rather than simply piling on more pressure.

What do you think of Joel Campbell's prospects?

image: © cedric_ramirez

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