‘I tried to rebuild him’ – ex Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger blames West Brom for ‘destroying’ Serge Gnabry’s confidence
Former Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has accused West Bromwich Albion of destroying Serge Gnabry’s confidence during his season-long loan spell at the Hawthorns.
But the German sensation wasn’t always a world beater and was described in 2016 by then Baggies boss Tony Pulis as a player not “at the level to play games” in the Premier League.
And now Wenger has put the boot in on Pulis, criticising him for destroying his young star’s confidence and kick-starting a spiral that saw the wide man depart the Emirates on a free transfer.
“We tried to extend his contract for a very long time and I think that Bayern manipulated behind the scenes, that if he went to Bremen he would join Bayern after,” Wenger told BeinSports when asked why he let the talented 20-year-old go in 2016.
“He was always a very talented boy who lacked confidence in some stages, but we always thought we had a player who could achieve a lot.
“He came back from a very bad experience on loan at West Brom where his confidence was destroyed.
He added: “I tried to rebuild him because I believed in him.”
But Wenger failed and Gnabry joined Werder Bremen in his native Germany in search of a fresh start before his impressive performances saw him join the Bundesliga champions for just eight million euros.