Ex-Watford standout, Troy Deeney, has alleged that Arsenal expressed an interest in acquiring him in 2020. However, he suggests that the fallout from his previous cojones remark prevented this unexpected transition from happening.
Deeney’s Missed Opportunity at Arsenal
Deeney has stated that he was given an opportunity to transition to the Gunners following Watford’s demotion from the Premier League in 2020. Previously, Deeney had made waves by criticising Arsenal‘s spirit, using the term “cojones”, after a 2-1 defeat to Watford during Arsene Wenger’s final stint as coach. As a condition of the proposed transfer to the Emirates Stadium, the then 34-year-old was asked to express regret for his previous comments to the Arsenal fans. Deeney decided against apologising, resulting in the transfer negotiations falling through.
Deeney’s Revelation on Filthy Fellas Podcast
During an appearance on the Filthy Fellas podcast, Deeney recounted the circumstances surrounding his near-move to Arsenal. He reminded listeners of the relegation year when he and his teammate, Danny Welbeck, both scored against Arsenal in a 3-2 loss. Despite the defeat, he believed they could have emerged victorious. It was this relegation day, at the Arsenal home ground, that his controversial “cojones” comment resurfaced, causing a stir.
Following the game, while nursing a knee injury in training, Deeney received a call from an Arsenal representative. The representative inquired if Deeney would consider moving to Arsenal, provided he apologised for his earlier comment. However, Deeney made it clear he wasn’t prepared to retract his words.
Interest from Other Clubs
In 2020, clubs other than Arsenal reportedly expressed interest in Deeney, including Tottenham. However, he opted to extend his tenure at Watford for an additional season before making the switch to his home town team, Birmingham City.
Early Career and Rise of Troy Deeney
Troy Deeney began his football career in earnest at Walsall, where he displayed an initial spark of talent. He scored a notable 27 goals in 136 appearances, showing promise as a forward. His knack for finding the back of the net didn’t go unnoticed and eventually attracted Watford’s attention.
Deeney’s Stint at Watford
Watford was where Deeney truly blossomed. His time there, from 2010 to 2020, was marked by his impressive performance and scoring ability. Deeney was a dominant force in the Championship league, where he registered 77 goals in 220 appearances.
Moreover, Deeney played an instrumental role in Watford’s promotion to the Premier League during the 2014-2015 season. His incredible last-minute goal against Leicester in the playoffs was a standout moment that Watford fans still cherish. His consistent performances and leadership skills earned him the captain’s armband, a testament to his influence on and off the pitch.
In the Premier League, Deeney maintained his scoring prowess, netting 47 goals in 163 appearances. He proved his ability to compete at the highest level of English football, often standing out in crucial matches.
Controversial Comments and Subsequent Fallout
Despite his impressive statistics, Deeney was perhaps most infamously known for his outspoken comments. After a 2-1 victory against Arsenal, Deeney criticised the Gunners for their lack of “cojones”. This comment generated a significant amount of controversy and even affected a potential move to Arsenal in 2020.
Final Season at Watford and Move to Birmingham City
After Watford’s relegation in 2020, Deeney spent one more season at Vicarage Road. He then opted for a sentimental move to his hometown club, Birmingham City. Here, he brought a wealth of experience and leadership, traits that were welcomed by the Championship side.
Looking back, Troy Deeney’s journey in football was marked by his scoring ability, leadership, and occasionally, his contentious remarks. His contributions to Watford, in particular, will remain a significant part of the club’s history.