Sven Mislintat defended his Arsenal transfers back in 2021. Here’s what he said as he’s linked with a role at Liverpool.
There’s a sensible reason behind it. Mislintat made his name at Borussia Dortmund, working with Jurgen Klopp during a very successful period for the club. Their relationship remains ‘brilliant’, says Plettenberg.
However, Mislintat’s time with Arsenal wasn’t anywhere near as successful. He spent two years there, from 2017 to 2019, and his departure was met with praise by fans.
Sven Mislintat on his Arsenal transfers
In particular, Mislintat defended signing many players he’d brought to Dortmund. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Henrich Mkhitaryan and Sokratis were the three – two of which didn’t work out.
“‘He only knows Dortmund players’, that was the take, I know,” said Mislintat. “But that can’t influence your decisions.
“You have to free yourself from opinions and politics as best as possible and be convinced that you’re doing the right thing. You can get it wrong. But those have to be honest mistakes, not mistakes you make because you felt you needed to make certain moves for appearances’ sake.”
“No need to talk about it,” he said on Aubameyang. “His statistics since he joined the Premier League stands for itself.”
“Miki was more than a good deal for the squad and for the accounts,” he said on swapping Alexis Sanchez for Mkhitaryan.
“To be quite clear: I don’t feel ashamed of any of those transfers, on the contrary, I will always defend these guys,” he said of his overall record. “Not because they were my players but because they were Arsenal players and capable ones.
“They turned up. The team went unbeaten in 22 games in all competitions, made it to the Europa League final and finished fifth with 70 points. You can say that’s not good enough.”
Mislintat doesn’t believe he did too badly, then. No, the overall signings didn’t work out but he sees quality in all of them individually. Arsenal fans may disagree with that, though.
We’re not sure that his record is anywhere near good enough, really. Perhaps some of that was down to change at Arsenal – Mislintat arrived with Arsene Wenger in charge and saw Unai Emery quickly take over.
Maybe we should cut him some slack, then. His efforts with Stuttgart have seen them return to the Bundesliga, so he is currently enjoying success. Throw in his work with Dortmund and Arsenal may have just been an unfortunate blip.