Football agent Kia Joorabchian extraordinarily hit out at Jamie Carragher live on TV after the pundit criticised his transfer dealings with Arsenal, telling the Liverpool legend to ‘check his facts before he speaks’.
Carragher had laid into Arsenal’s recruitment while speaking on Monday Night Football on Sky Sports and described some of their signings, including Willian, Cedric Soares and David Luiz, as a ‘joke’, and questioned whether Joorabchian – who represents all three – was responsible.
And the agent lashed out at his comments while speaking to Jim White on Sky Sports News on Tuesday night, insisting he had ‘nothing to do’ with the signings he mentioned. He also referenced an incident involving Carragher in 2018 where he spat towards the direction of a 14-year-old girl after a confrontation with a fan.
Agent Kia Joorabchian has furiously hit back at Jamie Carragher after he questioned whether he was involved with Arsenal’s ‘joke’ transfers this season
The pundit criticised the Gunners’ buys of Willian and Cedric Soares on Monday Night Football
The 42-year-old was initially suspended by Sky Sports before being brought back to the team after five months after his fellow pundit Neville made a plea for the broadcaster to keep him in the role.
Joorabchian said: ‘First and foremost, I understand Jamie’s job was saved by Gary Neville when he had that very bad incident and I understand he wants to protect this brand by making comments that are not correct.
‘I’m very surprised because Jamie is one of the people that monopolises Sky Sports commentary. Sky Sports producers pay a lot of money to him – hundreds of thousands, so I can’t understand why he doesn’t check his facts before he speaks.
He defended the performances of Willian but insisted he had nothing to do with his signing
Joorabchian also questioned Carragher’s criticism of David Luiz and claimed he was ‘jealous’ of the Brazilian centre-back
‘The fact is I had nothing to do with the signing of Willian. If Jamie had bothered to check with Mikel [Arteta] or [technical director] Edu, they would have said Mikel presented three different times to convince Willian to be his number one signing at Arsenal. He had an opportunity to stay at Chelsea and to go to two other Premier League clubs. [Inter] Miami made him a very nice offer. Mikel convinced him to stay.
‘Furthermore, David Luiz was in the same situation. Mikel spent a lot of time in lockdown to speak to him and persuade him to stay. Gabriel was on the list of at least three other clubs.
‘But the main point is – why do Sky pay Jamie Carragher so much money to talk rubbish? Surely he has the contacts through Sky or himself to make a phone call to Edu or even Sky to put a question in through the press department. Why make an assumption that is going to create an atmosphere that is very bad throughout the club?’
Willian is yet to score since joining from Chelsea on a free transfer this summer and has been singled out for criticism after failing to spark Arsenal into life during a season of struggles that has seen them plummet into mid-table.
Luiz, meanwhile, joined at the start of the last campaign but has come under fire for some glaring errors in defence.
Carragher tore into Arsenal on Monday night football but brought Joorabchian into the debate
Joorabchian also went to war with Gary Neville this summer after he criticised Carlos Tevez
Neville had accused Joorabchian’s client of ‘downing tools’ during his two years at Man United
Joorabchian has previously butted heads with Carragher’s fellow pundit Neville, who questioned his client Carlos Tevez’s attitude at Manchester United during his two-year spell. During a tense exchange in May, the agent confronted him about his comments, with Carragher making light of the situation by eating popcorn while the pair continued their feud.
But on this occasion he had Carragher in his sights and accused him of being ‘jealous’ of Willian and David Luiz, questioning his inconsistent analysis of players.
‘Obviously he’s a little bit jealous because he hasn’t won as many trophies as David [Luiz] has in his hallway, nor Willian. They’ve won everything and he hasn’t. He feels aggrieved to them. He criticised David very badly last year when he had one bad game against Man City but never complimented him when he was man of the match in the FA Cup Final against Chelsea.
‘One of the thing everyone misses – when you put people on TV like Jamie Carragher… the producers have to have that sense of saying “hey, this is not a personal vendetta”. I have so much information on Jamie Carragher – if I tried to spit it out on TV…’
He insisted players like Cedric needed time to adapt and told Carragher to ‘do his homeowork’
He was then cut off by host White, who attempted to refocus the debate on the poor form of players such as Willian and Luiz, and Joorabchian leapt to their defence and told Carragher to ‘do his homework’.
‘David [Luiz] has had the impact. He delivered the FA Cup, one of the key members. Everyone knows the way he plays – with his heart.
‘I think with new players coming into the team such as Cedric, he’s had a little time to get into the team and needs to have his chances. He hasn’t had those chances and until he does we cannot criticise. Willian is neither ten games into the season and he has nothing to prove whatsoever.
Joorabchian has had a growing influence at Arsenal and is close with technical director Edu
‘If Jamie had done a bit of homework he may have said, “Ok who signed [William] Saliba for £30m that we’ve never seen?” You cannot talk about players that are trying to adapt.’
Joorabchian has been heavily involved with Arsenal in the last few years and is said to be a close associate of technical director Edu.
Speaking on Monday Night Football, Carragher had defended Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta, instead taking aim at the club’s transfer business and ‘nonsense’ around the Emirates, singling out Joorabchian.
‘I really like Mikel Arteta,’ he said. ‘There’s a lot of nonsense around the club – bringing players, buying players.
‘I think some signings were a joke. In terms or bringing Willian in, Luiz in, Cedric in.
‘Is Kia Joorabchian making signings at the club?’