How Arsenal Defied The Odds To Sign Kieran Tierney
Arsenal have confirmed the deadline day signing of Kieran Tierney after rejuvenating their interest in the final hours of the transfer window.
The Gunners have defied the football betting odds by eventually landing Celtic’s Tierney with just 12 minutes to spare ahead of the summer transfer deadline.
Celtic accepted Arsenal’s bid – thought to be worth around £25m – late on Wednesday, August 7, 2019.
The defender travelled to London to complete his medical and signed a long-term contract the following day.
And it puts an end to a transfer saga that had many Arsenal fans worried would never get done.
Arsenal defy transfer odds
Arsenal finally landed Tierney after months of speculation, with William Hill offering odds of 1/7 (-700) on a deal being done just hours before Celtic accepted the Gunners’ offer. Those odds then plummeted to 1/100 (-10000).
But that is a long way off what Arsenal were initially priced at to sign the Scotland international.
Back in April the north London club were 5/1 (+500) to snap up Tierney, as links to Leicester surfaced.
Brendan Rodgers – Tierney’s former boss at Celtic – was thought to be plotting a big-money move to bring the Douglas-born star to the King Power.
Leicester were 3/1 (+300) favourites to get a deal done but Arsenal have persisted in their pursuit.
How Arsenal got the deal done
Indeed, it was this persistence – coupled with a dose of desperation – that eventually earned Arsenal the rights to the player.
The Gunners are notorious for not paying over the odds for players and Tierney, even at a relatively cheap fee of £25m, was viewed as a target worth negotiating for.
Celtic initially held up strong resistance around the £18m mark but in reality the Scottish champions were always going to sell.
Laurent Koscienly’s forced exit to Bordeaux on August 6 was likely the final straw for the Gunners.
Manager Unai Emery had so far failed to adequately strengthen a defence that was left wanting on a regular basis last season.
Adding Tierney to his Arsenal back line – all while offloading another defender in Carl Jenkinson – makes complete sense.
They needed reinforcements and the groundwork already put into assessing Tierney’s suitability made him their only realistic option this close to the deadline, without them taking a massive gamble on an unknown prospect.
All they needed to do was agree to Celtic’s demands.
And punters who backed Arsenal when Tierney looked set for a move to Leicester will no doubt be delighted with the price they received.