Kagawa snubs Arsenal | Euros close off window to buy for a month | Benik Afobe can dance

by & filed under News Review, Transfer Gossip.

The Hoff knows my pain

Wednesday is here, the weather is still making the week so sweaty I had to make a mid-morning H&M pit stop yesterday to slip into something slighty fresher. 72 hour deodorant makes so much more sense now I work in London. It’s just a shame half the people on public transport haven’t seen the light in the same way I have.

Anyway… onto football. We have SO MUCH NEWS to crack on with.

Benik Afobe likes to dance. There’s a video going around of the young Arsenal forward showing off his moves. Where? In his hotel room. Who with? Well, it sounds like a guy.

Hold on. Two guys, away on ‘tour’, videoing each other practicing dance moves? Seriously. That sort of behaviour is the type of stuff that would have destroyed my father as a youngster.

There’d be no more football tours for me if he’d caught wind of such shennanigans.

As it happens, the moves were quite slick. His timing and rhythm was as impressive as his ability to slip between styles with relative ease. He’s one to watch guys. Louis Spence would marvel.

Errr… what else do we have to talk about? Oh yeah, Eduardo! He’s talking about maybe coming back to the Premier League for a career swansong. I could imagine him working in a team like Norwich. He could easily do something similar to what Kevin Phillips has been doing at Blackpool. If you’re an amazing finisher and you can adapt your game around not having much pace, you’ll still be able to score goals well into your thirties. Eduardo was a bit lost on me as a player. His overall contribution to the team was always quite low in my opininon. I said it at the time… generally, the only  time he’d chip in was with a goal. Great when he was scoring, not so great when he wasn’t. Of course, I know that sort of talk doesn’t go down well with people who like to talk about Eduardo like he died… he didn’t, he’s fine.

I guess that’s the thing with Premier League strikers these days. If they want to be elite, they have to be an everything player. The best can usually play on their own. They can drop deep, play off the last man, they have pace, power, ability in the air. I guess that’s why we’ve struggled with strikers of late. You can’t generally pick up these super players for a pittance. They’re in high demand. That’s why I fear for this summer. We don’t seem to want to go into battle with any club for any player.

Kagawa seems all set to sign for United For £17.5million. He’s a super talented player who could have given us a much needed boost in creative department. We were in for him, seems he didn’t fancy us. Eden Hazard went to Chelsea. Remember I told you about concerns about his attitude as the season wears on? It’ll take a very strong manager to work with him and I’m guessing it’ll take a lot for him to adapt to not being the biggest ego in the dressing room. That point aside, he’s another major talent we weren’t ever in the running for.

There’s the tendency to feel like we’re coasting into another close season without a strategy in the transfer market again. I’d always be the first to jump on the club if this were the case, but I’ve been told that’s not what’s going on and that we are pushing to move players on and we’re trying the bring them in. I don’t get my stories third hand through a friend who knows a friend either… so I have no doubt that this is the case. I guess it’s just a case of waiting and seeing what the club have planned. I was told by someone  a few weeks ago that the club planned to have some good news before the AST meeting with Ivan Gazidis. At the time I said I was pretty sure this was the line spun last  year… and it turned out to be nonsense.

It’s the waiting game I’m afraid. We’ll need to move pretty quick for players because once the tournament starts, it’s doubtful many players / clubs will want to talk business. We can’t head into July 11th without having next seasons squad ready again… new players will need to bed in. We can’t head into the season hoping we’ll make it out of August without needing to sign anyone new.

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Anyway… plenty to talk about. What about Afobe and those dance moves?

P.S. Apologies for the site issues we’ve been having lately. We’ve moved to a new, bigger, more powerful server. You guys smashing refresh at 0900 is an issue / summers being busier. Well, hammer away now… because we’re bullet proof (fingers crosse, touch wood, pray to the tech gods).

 

397 Responses to “Kagawa snubs Arsenal | Euros close off window to buy for a month | Benik Afobe can dance”

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  1. Zacharse

    But gambon, didnt the winners of la liga amd the epl, arguably the 2 strongest leagues, spend the most?

    Also i’m willing to wager how wrong you’ll be about the history books, especially in the current field of nonfiction. Check out a little author named niall ferguson for some clarification. Or do a little research into who is propping up the spanish banks that give barcelona unsecured loans of 150m+…

    Tired of this simplified money issue. Lets just get a starting xi who have some passion and talent and get rid of cunts like theo, ramsey and others whod rather be working out in the gym or concentrating on nutritioning or some stupid shit

  2. Gunner2301

    Pedro appreciate the post. Making me click on the Afobe link im pissed off about he’s shit :lol wasn;t worth the click.

    On the AST meeting, I’ve looked at transcripts of previous meetings and it doesn’t appear that the AST are asking the difficult questions, like they don’t want to offend anyone and keep things all cordial. In your opinion is there anyone that actually asks questions at these meetings who is prepared to tear Gazidis down with facts and I mean the kind of facts that he can’t sweet talk his way out of like a politician. Would they for instance pass on the feeling of unrest bordering on protest that is felt amongst a lot of fans?

    Away from that one and lets have a look at the Djourou situation, where do you start? Here is a figure who arrived in 2002 a year before Senderos who was shipped out because he wasn’t deemed good enough but was better than Djourou who couldn’t get a look in. Then we shipped out all our experience and he got a clear run in the team by all competition being removed. He didn’t do too badly but then reverted to type. We brought in better players and he slipped down the pecking order.

    Now his international coach has prodded him whilst he’s in his comfort zone of Arsenal.com presenter and pointed out that he actually needs to be playing (and not compiling video diaries) to get picked for the national team. Coming back down to the real world he’s thinking that maybe he should move on to get first team football if good offers come in.

    Firstly I must say I don’t even want to begin to try to understand how Djourou as a squad player can be exercising clauses in his contract that automatically extends his contract for another 3 years? WTF are we doing self-service contracts at Arsenal now? Dick Laws and IG too busy to do the contract negotiations we’ll just insert clauses and let the players negotiate with themselves.

    Then I would have to ask why should it take Djourous international coach to point out something that Arsenal should have known a long time ago i.e. Djourou will never be good enough to represent us as a first team player if our ambition is to compete and win trophies. Especially with the wages he is earning as a squad player 4/5th choice CB. We should have been actively looking to get him off the books.

    This brings me to another point which may give us an indication that Wenger has no intention of changing. There have been a lot of players who we have not good enough that we have hung onto and they have moved on of their own volition. So Wenger still hasn’t come to a conclusion that these players are not good enough because there is no benchmark of quality across the team. Every player is dealt with as an individual and a shit player can be here for years like Djourou has been without pressure to improve or move on.

    Wenger has not changed, just look for the signs they’re there if you look closely enough.

    WENGER OUT

  3. sam

    benik afobe man of the match for the under 19, he didn’t score but worked hard for the team and he tracks back to help the defence.
    gues who’s switzerland best defender,
    martin angha, another arsenal youngster.

  4. zeus

    2301

    Good points. And top marks for using PARAGRAPHS. Some of these posters gives you this huge block as if they think people want to read through that.

  5. zeus

    Sam

    I’ve given up following the reserves ‘bright stars.’

    None of them have made it. Merida, Barazite, JET, Murphy, Rui Fonte……………..and I could go on and on.

    Even Jamie Sanderson has stopped updating the young guns site. He’s now a full time journo, but still, talking up these talents that fail must’ve gotten to him too.

  6. Senderoff

    The wages of young potential were never as out of hand as they are now. Back when David Dein was around things seemed in check. Or is it because inflated wages by Chelsea mainly and now man city have made Arsenal think that they must pay over the odds on wages before they have reached their potential (I.e. potential wage)

    It’s like guessing how much a house will be worth in the future and taking out a sizeable mortgage to cover it, only to discover the prediction of increased value didn’t come true because house prices are also subject to market forces. Oh….oh yeah.

    If the architect and designer and maintainer of the house is the same, you can’t blame him for telling tight arse bank managers that you need to hold onto this one cause it has potential.

    Perhaps there is a bit of both and there is a definitely missing link between Arsene and the board. And with Arsene not having a director of football (rightly so I think), there needs to be more footballing experience on the board…

  7. gambon

    Ive given up on gushing about the kids, that said i do think Benik Afobe could be something special.

    He will need to take his finishing to the next level, but he always seems to be the best player at every age level, he just needs to make that transition.

    TBH at 19 you need to start working your way into the first team squad.

  8. gambon

    Senderoff

    Since Dein has gone Wenger has gone mental signings kids from everywhere.

    I think its pretty clear to see just how much Dein used to keep old senile in check.

  9. sam

    zeus,

    only few players from the academy make it through to the first team the majority are just there to train then move on, even barca never promote 11 barca B players to the first team. its always 3 or 4.
    the difference is other clubs shift their average and quickly while arsenal hang on to them hoping djourou will become sol campbell and bendtner will play like messi one day or ramsey will play cesc next season. even walcott should have been sold longtime ago.

  10. The BearMan

    Maybe Arsenal is no longer taken seriously as a Club with ambition?

    8 seasons of finishing in the runners up positions is no longer convincing for the heavy weights in football. But, players also feel cheapened when their asking price is 20p and we expect to pay the maximum of 5p.

    News that all our BiG players have used the exist door again has weaken the image of the Club. We also lack a buying strategy. Cheap n cheerful is an image we are finding hard to shift.

  11. sam

    to run a successful academy you have to chose the best 2 or 3 every season and buy 2,3 or 4 mature then shift few from both academy and first team to move on, they could become good one day you don’t care but you have to make firm decision, but arsenal sign you it doesn’t matter how crap you are, you gonna be around for a very longtime.
    almunia anyone, squillaci and chamakh are still here, arsene is like a father to them and loves them all so arsenal is like one big disfunctional family.

  12. BOOZY

    All these overhyped british managers.

    Brendan rogers over martinez, joke. – well thats one less rival to worry about.

  13. Draper-Corleone

    @Gambon

    When you get a second off from rabble rousing and slagging off other people, try and hear yourself speak. You are a bundle of incoherent contradictions.

    1) Football has been about money since 1900
    2) Ligue 1, Bundesliga and Serie A winners are not the biggest spenders.

    So, which one of the two is it Gambon the Great?

    I am thrilled with Montpellier and BVB’s wins. Serie A is rigged so can’t be bothered with Juventus. Can you imagine the amount of money to be made by betting on a side going undefeated over a season?

    Arsenal are the original Montpellier and BVB. The challenge for these clubs, like it was/is for Arsenal will be to keep up with the success.

    When you have high aspirations and limited means, you have to innovate and experiment. Sometimes the experiments work, sometimes they don’t.

    We all agree the Arsenal wage structure has not worked. We all agree some players have not worked out.

    But those experiments were undertaken in good faith to achieve success in ways other than competing head on with the likes of United, Chelsea and now City.

    Why? Because Arsenal CANNOT compete head on with those clubs. Wenger had to find another way.

    And by and large he has done well. A spanking new stadium. State of the art training facilities. World class medical care. A youth set-up that is bound to yield results in the long term. Top 4 and in the Champions League proper for 15, FIFTEEN years. Close to winning trophies on at least 4-5 occasions over the last so called 7 drought years. And over and above, a style of football that pleases even if the team lose. And I am not even counting the trophies.

    Arsenal is ALL of that and more. But the only thing people here see are no trophies for 7 years.

    To pummel the manager who has done so much for the club the way it is done here betrays a lack of intelligence of course but one can accept that from football fans. But it also betrays a lack of grace, a lack of pride in your own way and a shameful desire to become the bitches of another billionaire.

    People here are dying for Ali Sher the lion of Ukraine to lend us a few bobs so we can get a few mercenaries and buy a trophy or two.

    The day that happens I will be mourning for the passing of the club that is Arsenal, and the birth of another clone of Chelsea/City/PSG/Malaga/Anzhi.

  14. gnarleygeorge9

    RVP & Podolski 2gether @ the sharp end. I can feel a Title coming on :)

    Don’t worry, RVP is staying.

    And I reckon the bloke with a head like a champignon mushroom, Gervinho will have a breakout season 4 The Arsenal.

    Now go & enjoy your Summer/Olympics :cool: Your London foggy mornings are down here with me in Launceston. Bloody pea soup it is right now :(

  15. Draper-Corleone

    and @Gambon again

    Since you are such a fan of Nasri, let me tell you however much he tries to convince himself and the world that ‘he’ has ‘won’ a trophy, the truth remains that he has won zilch.

    He has just gone and joined Sheikh Mansour’s harem which now displays a trophy bought for a billion pounds.

    Won a trophy my foot.

  16. Gunner2301

    Boozy

    I actually think neither of them are the right manager for Pool. You’d think they could attract a top manager and that’s really what they need to put themselves back on the map. I believe Pools owners will probably make more money available to the new manager to get back into the top 4 the thing is many players in Europe wont even know who Rogers or Martinez are.

    They really need an Ancelotti, Van Gaal even Ranieri (the tinker man) might have been better. What must Dog leash think? A young pip squeak with little experience being chosen over him that must burn quite badly. I can’t even imagine him wanting to go near the place.

    Will the team give a young manager like him respect after the ousting of king Kenny the legend? He could go the same way of AVB. I don;t think the Pool players are that way inclined but it has that potential written all over it. Plus Rogers has zero CL experience so not sure how he’s going to manage there and with challenging in all competitions and being expected to do well. The most he’s paid for a player is like 6 mill. It’s a big risk to take.

  17. Jeff

    I’ve finally understood and can define the difference between an AKB and a non-AKB.

    A non-AKB wants to be able point to titles and trophies to show success whereas an AKB wants to tell us about the new stadium, the wonderful facilities, half a dozen “almost” finals, a good attempt to win things with limited means, doing well in spite of the competition, how good it feels ‘nearly’ winning something while experimenting with youth and fringe players etc. etc.

    If you can be satisfied with all of that, it is fully accepted that an AKB is a very happy bunny. If not, and clearly there are those who are categorically not happy with the 7 barren years, what else is there to do but find reasons, faults and shortcomings. If nothing was found wanting in any of those considerations we might wonder what all the fuss is about but clearly there are problems and one of the most notable results of that is the exodus of high profile players who want to win trophies and the reluctance of new ones to join.

    It all depends on your perspective. But here is one thought. I have never witnessed a non-AKB suddenly defect to become an AKB but lots going the other way. That should say something.

  18. Draper-Corleone

    @Arsenalone

    I am a big Wenger fan no doubt.

    But more than that I am a fan of pride, elegance, beauty and have a weird romantic streak that makes me believe passion, ideas and creativity can overcome the vulgarity of money.

    If Hleb, Flamini, Adebayor, Fabregas and Nasri believed too, by now I would have been proven right many times over.

  19. Draper-Corleone

    @Jeff

    Congratulations on your epiphany.

    ‘Lack of trophies’ is your problem, is it?
    17 of 20 PL clubs did not win a trophy this year.

    Many will not win a trophy ever.

    If the ranks of ‘non-AKB’ fans like you are swelling as you seem to have an illusion of, these clubs with no hope of ever winning a trophy should have lost all their fans ages ago.

    Will you mind if I offer an advice?
    Follow a club for what it is, not for what it wins.

  20. Gunner2301

    Jeff

    In my case trophies aren’t even the be all and end all. I’d be happy for us to be up there challenging for them and as long as the players are of the required standard to do that and are giving 100% for the shirt I’d be happy with that. We can;’t and don;t have to win everything, but not trying is not acceptable not in a professional sport where winning is the goal and players are paid tens of thousands a week.

    I’m also equally annoyed at how the club has been stripped of its traditions and identity and that to me is equally important. To others it may not matter they might say times change and we need to move with that but it does matter to me and United are an example of a club that has not lost it’s identity or traditions and it is reinforced at every level and engrained in their DNA unlike our club.

    We are a long way from where we used to be as a club. Little by little things have been eroded we have no strategic direction which is evident in our transfer window purchases. We pay top wages to executives and managers to establish such things but maybe they don’t want us to know what the strategy is because it wouldn’t be pallatable to the fans because it opposes everything we understand and would expect from a competitive ambitious club.

    So I agree with you Jeff but just as there will be degrees of AKBism there will be degrees of non AKBs who would be satisfied by slightly different things. You also forgot the AKBs undying love for Wenger believing he is the club and without him the club is nothing. Non-AKBs tend to be fans who were here before Wenger and will be here long after him.

  21. Gunner2301

    Draper

    In a way you hit the nail on the head. What exactly do you think Arsenal is now? I used to know but I don’t anymore and i think a lot of fans would be in the same position if they sat down and thought about it or like I said if they were fans previously and see where we are now. What do you think the club is?

  22. SUGA3

    DC,

    follow the club for what it is?

    hmmmm, let me think, at this moment, Arsenal is fleecing the fans, charging the highest prices in Europe and presenting a sorry excuse for a team with a bunch of juvenile cunts getting overpaid and what is the funniest thing about all this, not learning a fucking thing while they are at it…

    and we are ‘led’ (haha) by a tactically inept nearly man, ridiculously poor man manager and a pathological liar, happy to pocket 7 large ones per annum, whilst spouting bollocks about self sustainability, typical French champagne socialist, do me a favour, sunshine, will ya?

  23. SUGA3

    and seriously, if you came on here to bore the pants off everyone talking about other 17 teams that won fuck all, then I will have you know that we have heard all this before and you may wish to refer to the countless LG threads where these ‘arguments’ were taken apart…

  24. Gunner2301

    Draper

    “But more than that I am a fan of pride, elegance, beauty and have a weird romantic streak that makes me believe passion, ideas and creativity can overcome the vulgarity of money.”

    I take it you haven’t been a fan for the last 7 or 8 years then because what you wrote doesn’t resemble any reality I’ve been seeing, quite the opposite. We haven’t played “beautiful” football since the Hleb, Cesc Flamini triangle. Flamini left in 2008.

    Ideas and creativity, well we lost that with Cesc and even before that we have been a team who have run out of ideas when teams park the bus and counter attack us. The same mistakes we’ve been making for years are still there. We are still being exposed by inferior teams and Wenger has been owned numerous times by junior managers.

    Tactically Wenger is impotent. The selections the substitutions the players on the bench that offer nothing and can’t change anything, the changes on 65 minutes. No ideas there then.

    You are talking about an Arsenal from a bygone era not the Arsenal we are watching today so I don’t understand what you believe you are supporting, nostalgia?

  25. Gunner2301

    SUG

    I don’t think the other 17 teams have a wage bill larger than ours with only one star player out of 71, Yes I’m talking about the 71 amongst which not a right back could be found so we had to skip the Championship and go all the way to league 1 to find a player who had only made 8 appearances for Charlton to back up Sagna.

  26. Jeff

    Gunner, of course what you say is perfectly valid. A trophy is merely the end product of a concatenation of many things. When we fail to reach that end result naturally we look for reasons (hence my phrase about “finding reasons, faults and shortcomings”).

    There is a huge psychological problem among those who will not entertain any criticism of the manager because it has become for them so difficult to separate the manager from the club. The two seem to have fused and become one so if you’re not a fan of the manager, you are not a fan of the club.

    If you can look at those two entities (manager and club) separately, it is easy to see where we are going wrong and why but if you can’t it is difficult. Over the 16 years at Arsenal, AW has become more than a manager. To many Arsenal fans AW is the best there has been and ever will be. This “ideology” is not based on science or results because in the cold light of day, they do not reflect that sentiment.

    I think the media have contributed to the delusion as well. They keep going on about how well we’ve done even with no trophies, how beautiful our style of play is, how nice it is to watch and the majority of fans have bought into this hype and now find themselves at odds with other fans who would like to see actual results rather than ‘ideology’, however magnanimous and elegant it might seem.

  27. Charlie Nick

    Why can’t we have a happy medium where we compete within our resources a la Dortmund, Montpellier, etc? The AKB’s vs non-AKBS seem to take an extreme position at each end of the spectrum where we have a black and white choice of either selling out and becoming another Man City or Chelsea or turning up to watch a team play pretty football and never come close to competing. For me competing is the watchword and for half of the past 7 years we haven’t full stop.
    I can’t agree with Draper-Corleone on his point of looking at 17 of the 20 others in the Prem and noting they won nothing. We are The Arsenal for Cliff’s sake! We were a constant in the “Big 4″ which has now swelled to a big 6. Yes we have a nice stadium, yes we have state of the art training facilities but they are a means to an end surely and that end is to be competetive. I don’t want us to turn into a faceless franchise, I loved Highbury, the proper crest and the certain je ne sais quois that had us a cut above all the rest when it came to doing things right. However that doesn’t mean I want us to turn into the modern day equivalent of Pegasus or the Corinthian Casuals with 11 Bernard Joy’s running around extolling the virtues of amateurism! We have money but we do not spend it wisely. Buying the disappointing Gervinho at the start of the off season then doing nothing until the 11th hour post Old Trafford was not good business. It reeked of complacency then panic. Arteta is the one nugget to come out of that debacle. We need to strengthen to keep RVP and attract new talent. No one wants to hear that Cole, Nasri and Fabregas left to win trophies and we prefer to close our eyes and ears and scream about money. We can compete for 80%+ plus of the players in the market but don’t or won’t. This has to change or we will become a selling club in the eyes of other clubs, our fans and also potential signings. Players want to play with good players. Charlie Nicholas stated that we were going to get Liam Brady back and Gordon Strachan was lined up too. Ambition breeds ambition and I fear we don’t show enough on or off the field.
    COYR

  28. Alex James

    Draper. Even in the dark days of te 1950s, when I first went to Highbury, and the 1960s did I ever see such bad defending as shown by this side. This is nothing to do with investment; it is all down to shocking tactics. And the person who is responsible for this is Wenger. It is this sort of issue that drives fans mad, together with really bad signings, that has harmed his reputation. Everyone knows that competing with City and Chelsea at present is financially not possible but fans who week in and week out spend a lot of money supporting the club want to see players trying hard and a defence that is properly organised. In my younger days, Real Madrid used to defend like us. The difference is that they had Di Stefano and Puskas to outscore the oppostion. We have had Chamakh and Bentner!

  29. Cesc Appeal

    incesc

    Oh he’s one of those is he (Ice) can’t stand attention seeking imbeciles like that who have ‘inside knowledge’. or the one son here who basically make up numbers and pass them off as fact.

    It’s Wesley Sneijder for me now, I think anywhere int he region of £25-30 Million would get him. He wants/needs UCL football as well.

    We need to start acting like Bayern Munich….can we offer the same wages as City/Chelsea? No of course not, not as high as them but we can give a handful exceptional wages by getting shot of the dross.

    Almunia – Already gone, Squillaci – 60k a week, Djourou – 55k a week, Denilson – 50k a week, Chamakh – 75k a week, Bendtner – 52k a week, Vela – 40k a week, Park – 40k a week…..as well as a host of youngsters who will never make it.

    With the accumulated saves in wages you could have 4-5 players at the club or seriously good wages. The only who warrants it at Arsenal right now is Robin Van Persie. That’s how Bayern do it.

    We need a Chief Exec who can do commercial deals, we’re currently 13th or 15th in Europe on commercial on 50 Million a year where Bayern are on 170 Million a year from commercial income….stupid gap

    We could comfortably have 4 superstars at the club on 100k+ a week salaries as long as we get shot of the dross and start paying people what they worth e.g Aaron Ramsey should be on 15-20k a week not 50k!!

  30. Jeff

    Absolutely Cesc, well said. That is how it works in other hierarchical organisations, so why should AFC be the exception. It keeps the top players working hard to keep proving they are worth the money and the lesser players also work hard to prove they can rise to higher wages. A win-win situation is created. Unfortunately the converse is also true where a lose-lose situation is created and that is what we have been experiencing.

  31. incesc

    was thinking sniedjer last year when cesc was leaving.

    thought we’d get 50m for cesc and spend it on a replacement considering how important he was to us.

    :roll: what a fool i was haha

    really have no expectations of arsenal now, its made me much more positive

  32. incesc

    i must say tho, its all very well saying sell a few players and give their wages to 1 or 2 stars but we do need a squad to deal with all our jnjuries.

    id keep djourou out of the ones mentioned. he was better at cb the season before last and is 4th choice essentially

  33. Cesc Appeal

    The pain is we could be an awesome club.

    You get rid of the dross, you sign your superstar in Sneijder, bring in M’Vila, Giroud on that £6 Million plus Chamakh deal and Ben Arfa as well as a good strong CB and Jaaska on a Free as GK.

    We’d instantly look twice the team. Sneijder and RVP are your big earners on 100+ a week. But you’d have a great collection of players there, if Walcott wants that kind of money I’d sell him this summer, you could replace him with Hoilett for Free and we’d have a much better player without even spending money.

    You’d have a middle three of Sneijder, M’Vila and Wilshere with RVP, Giroud and Ben Arfa up top.

    The outlay wouldn’t be huge either, after you take off our own sales you’re looking at £30-40 Million spend and probably a REDUCTION in the wage bill still.

    The club would watch it’s commercial viability and profit rocket after a summer like that, one of the greatest midfielders in Europe, one of the the greatest young midfielders in Europe, one of the greatest strikers in Europe and one of the most exciting prospects in the Ox for a while. Brands would be tripping over themselves to get to us.

    Sure it’s not City or Chelsea but I tell you what I’d have utter faith that squad would win something….would have faith it could under the current manager? Different question….but no

  34. Cesc Appeal

    Incesc

    would you keep Djourou? Or would you rather see Koscielny, Vermaelen, Vertonghen and Mert as your CB options?

    If Juventus want Djourou for £8-10 Million I’d bite their Italian arm’s off!

  35. incesc

    i just think we have 3 decent cb’s and could do with spending money on a left back, a striker, a winger a dm and a cesc replacement first.

    Hes not that bad but hopefully wont play too many games either

  36. sam

    usa brazil is on, i am scouting for arsenal
    of course neymar and lucas are in the team, casemiro possibly on the team i hope he gets some minutes.

  37. SalparadiseNYC

    Cesc Appeal,

    Well said regarding Wesley Sneidjer, worth the money.

    Wilshire would learn so much from him, not to mention message it would sent to our skipper, the Dutch alliance would be a good one.
    Now can you make it happen?

  38. sam

    you forgot they are both dutch
    sneijder and van persie don’t get along, it will make things worse.
    maybe arjen robben

  39. Moray

    sorry to burst the bubble but Sneider nd VP hate each other. Also, if he was available, he would not come to Arsenal. He is above our level, unfortunately, so long as Wenger and the Board remain in place.

    On a similar note, look at this from the Bleacher report (I have edited). I suppose it is our own fault that we are always talked about like paupers these days. Fans and pundits always talk about our bank balance first and our football second:

    Arsenal Transfer Rumors: Arsene Wenger Wise to Back off from Yann M’Vila

    Arsenal Transfer Rumors: Arsene Wenger Wise to Back off from Yann M’Vila
    By Ben Chodos (Featured Columnist) on May 30, 2012 1,182 reads 2
    Use your ← → (arrow) keys to browse more storiesNext
    Alex Livesey/Getty Images
    Arsenal are toning down their pursuit of Rennes midfielder Yann M’Vila, and as usual, Arsene Wenger is making the right move.

    According to Mirror Football, the French club is asking for £17 million for the midfielder, causing Wenger to abandon talks and switch his focus to Manchester City’s Nigel De Jong.

    Wegner’s strategy of not paying high prices in the transfer market has kept Arsenal competitive throughout the Frenchman’s tenure, but has not led to trophies in recent years. The Gunners have not won the Premier league since the 2003-04 season, and they have made the semifinals of the Champions League just once since losing to Barcelona in the 2006 final.

    Arsenal have been stuck in limbo, remaining in the top four every season, but never threatening to win the league. They need a player who will push the team over the top and make a big impact immediately upon arrival, and M’Vila is not that player.

    M’Vila is young, athletic and plays the holding midfielder position very well. But adding him to the squad would not make enough of a difference to help the Gunners improve their third-place finish in the Premiership.

    Admittedly, De Jong is not that type of impact player, either, but he can be bought for much cheaper than M’Vila. He plays the exact same role and can play the position very effectively.

    At 27 years old, De Jong is older than a typical Wenger transfer target. He started just 11 games for City last season, struggling to break into the lineup after an influx of expensive transfers. But in De Jong’s limited playing time, 92.3 percent of his passes were successful, compared to the 83.2 percent mark that M’Vila set, according to Whoscored.com.

    Should Arsene Wenger spend £17 million on Yann M’Vila?
    Yes, Arsenal badly need his help in the midfield.
    No, that’s far too expensive.
    Submit Vote vote to see results
    He is now expendable, and Wenger will likely be able to buy him for much less than the £17million price tag that has been placed on M’Vila.

    Wenger is much better off saving his money and letting another team splurge on M’Vila.

  40. Moray

    Is it next year that our commercial deals come up for renewal, or the year after?

    It is typical Arsenal if we drop out of the CL JUST at the point we are due to negotiate with our sponsors.

  41. Gunner2301

    Incesc 00:41

    The thing is Wenger doesn’t rotate because he hasn’t assembled the quality to match the first 11. We have seen over the years the players coming in are nowhere near adequate. I’d be surprised if Wenger has used more than 17 players all season for the first team.

    That is one of his failings. The backup quality is poor, he doesn’t or can’t rotate because he can’t trust others to come in and do a job so hell flog the first 11 to death giving rise to more injuries through being overplayed.

  42. zacharse

    anybody see the little blurb on arsenal.com about the 9 gunners featuring in euro ’12?

    ya? two of em were arshavin and bendtner…

  43. Gunner2301

    Moray

    I believe it’s 2014/15. I was thinking this Summer is the last real opportunity we have to buy quality to allow us to attempt to win something for when this is due.

    We are in the worst possible position now making our bargaining position weak. 1 star player who might leave, nobody of commercial value coming in, no beautiful football anymore, year on year your best players leaving.

    Commercial partners want to be associated with success and winners not losers, a shiny new stadium or a self sustainable model that sees the club sitting on 210mill as on the field it slides into decline.

    We’ll be lucky if those sponsors either want the deals to remain the same or reduce them based on how we have declined as a force.

    We should be investing now so we look like a team that can achieve success. If we spend 100mill and by virtue of that we improve the teams prospects thereby growing the commercials by 50mill isn’t that worth doing?

  44. Draper-Corleone

    True to form gambon?

    Can’t debate? Call someone a retard.

    The only one who comes across as a retard is you.

  45. gambon

    Draper Cunteone

    This is an Arsenal blog, find yourself an Arsene blog.

    I can debate just fine, just not with idiots who havent got a clue like you and your gay uncle Tony.

  46. Draper-Corleone

    @Alex James

    Everyone is aware of Arsenal’s defensive frailty, none more so than the manager who trains them day in day and out and has to sit through the agony of seeing them make mistakes every other game.

    He is trying to fix it – he has bought more defenders over the last few seasons than attacking players – Vermaelen, Koscielny, Per, Squillaci, Jenkinson and Santos.

    But that does not mean giving up on the football Arsenal want to play. His total football mission stays intact. It is just far more difficult to defend in that system than the George Graham style or Jose Mourinho style.

    Playing that style means drilling year in year out with the same set of players. He has not lucked in on that as the players he trusted to stick around and get the team to the level he envisions deserted him at absolutely the wrong times.

    First Hleb and Flamini went when the team was on the verge of peaking.
    Then last year he lost his entire first choice midfield – Cesc and Nasri defected, and Diaby and Wilshere remained injured the whole season.

    On top of that, we did not have a single fullback for a whole month.

    And people here believe he doesn’t know football, he doesn’t know tactics. Ha.

  47. Thomas, it's up for grabs now..

    Draper Cunteone
    This is an Arsenal blog, find yourself an Arsene blog.
    I can debate just fine, just not with idiots who havent got a clue like you and your gay uncle Tony.
    ———————–

    a bit OTT there Gambon I’m afraid..

    C’mon… you’ve no proof that Tony is his actual Uncle!

  48. Draper-Corleone

    @gambon, you can call me as many names as you want to.

    By using the gutter language that is your style, you tell the world what you are, not what I am.

  49. gambon

    “He is trying to fix it ”

    Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha

    31
    37
    41
    43
    49

    Yep, trying is the key word in that sentence.

  50. Draper-Corleone

    @gambon

    Arsene has had a HUGE role in making Arsenal the club it is today.

    So to disrespect the man by hiding under the guise of being an Arsenal, not an Arsene fan, comes across as a tad ingenuous and facetious to anyone who has slightly more intelligence than you.

  51. Draper-Corleone

    @gambon, care to enlighten what the overall trend in goals conceded in the PL is?

    As in total goals conceded by ALL teams? Or the average number of goals conceded?

    Or the number of goals conceded by the top 3 teams?

    Those numbers will make sense only when looked at in relative terms.

    Better surfaces, better boots, balls that swerve more, regulations that prevent defenders from murdering attacking players – all of them would have something to contribute I suppose?

    You are the archetypal exposition of the adage “Statistics, statistics and damned lies.’

    And you don’t even get your facts right all the time. 6 months ago on this forum you were arguing that the Arsenal cash reserve ‘must’ be 200 million.

  52. Arse&Nose©

    What is this about Djourou having his mega contract auto-renewed last year because of a clause that counted how many games he played. Surely management should have seen that and stopped playing him!!

  53. Draper-Corleone

    @arse&nose – stopped him playing? We had no full backs for more than a month last season! And the year before he was one of the standout performers early in the season.

  54. Arse&Nose©

    draper, we should have had backups. Our lack of investment to begin with cost us a lot of money long term by having to shell out for the renewal with pay increase of a 4th choice cb!

    even bolton were smart about a similar situation they had with salgado, they dropped him and he was a first teamer!

  55. Ricky

    DC,

    What heck are you on about?!

    We had One of the worst defences out of all the top ten teams.

    What world are you living in?

    If you want to be taken seriously you gotta come better then that.

  56. gambon

    No draper cunteone

    I said by end of FY 2012 we would have £200m, following the trend of increased cash balances yearly.

  57. Draper-Corleone

    Ricky, I am not trying to say our defence does not need improvement. And I am sure if you and I are aware, surely Arsene is aware.

    I have argued earlier that this year we conceded a lot more for a variety of reasons, not least because we were worse than Arsenal teams of recent years in keeping the ball.

    But, if we have to throw numbers around, at least lets look at the overall trend. Last year, the Premier League record of goals scored was breached once again.

  58. Viveora

    The most pitiful and horrible thing I’ve seen an AKB tweet is “all that matters is improvement. Who cares about trophies as long as you improve”

    Ummm first off we haven’t improved, we are 3rd because the other teams have regressed, secondly re are regressing since 05, and in that time wenger hasn’t bothered to change it

    We will see what arsenal can do in the transfer, one would hope that they will solve the glaring problems, so we can compete and win, but then again this arsenal.

  59. Ricky

    & who’s to blame for not having any full backs for those games last season. You make it sound as if we had no control over the situation..

    Wenger knew we were short for cover. He sold traore & bought another left back who cannot defend to save he’s life.

    Jenkinson is clearly not good enough & Gibbs is prone to injury.

    Mark my words, the same thing will happen again next season if we don’t strenghthen in those areas.

  60. PnP

    ONE fucking spend of 50 Mill pounds, and we could be at the top again. for years. 20-odd for the attacking, creative midfielder. the balance for a out and out right-footed striker.

    Get M’villa and Cavanni. Then get up and get going with practice sessions, mates!

  61. gambon

    Total goals scored last 5 years in PL

    2007/8 – 1002
    2008/9 – 942
    2009/10 – 1053
    2010/11 – 1063
    2011/12 – 1066

    So the total number of goals conceded has risen by 6% in the last 5 years, and 1.2% in the last 2 seasons.

    Yet Arsenals goals conceded has risen by 58% in the last 5 years, and 16% in the last 2 seasons.

    So Draper, your argument is fucking pathetic.

    We are regressing hugely defensively in a laegue that is largely remaining flat from a goals scored point of view.

    Swerving balls? What a cunt!

  62. gambon

    “And I am sure if you and I are aware, surely Arsene is aware.”

    Erm my response to that…..

    ‘ We are 2% away from winning trophies’

    ‘Almunia is world class’

    ‘Diaby is like a new signing’

  63. Moray

    @ Draper: “Playing that style means drilling year in year out with the same set of players. He has not lucked in on that as the players he trusted to stick around and get the team to the level he envisions deserted him at absolutely the wrong times.First Hleb and Flamini went when the team was on the verge of peaking.
    Then last year he lost his entire first choice midfield – Cesc and Nasri defected, and Diaby and Wilshere remained injured the whole season.On top of that, we did not have a single fullback for a whole month.”

    If the rats are fleeing the ship then it’s because it’s on fire. Wenger forced the Fabregas sale through at favourable rates to Barca. They spent months laughing at us in the press, remember?

    And the rash of injuries happen to us year after year. It is to do with overplaying and overtraining.

    These are no terrible accidents that happen to Arsenal every year – the cause is clear. And our covers were far from good enough. One a cheapo buy and the other a panic buy. And Gibbs is a clear injury case anyway.

  64. The Poldi Prince

    Where the fuck is my post?

    As entertaining as the current to and fro is, I’m getting bored.

    Gambon is a fair cunt, but I agree with the football related comments completely.

    AW, for all his pre 2008 greatness, is losing his proverbial marbles.

    Has lost so many first team players in that time, rarely replacing like for like.

    Now, I get that we can’t buy ronaldo or messi. But fuck, replace what you sell. Don’t horde the fucking cash like a bunch of cunts!

  65. Draper-Corleone

    Two things Ricky…

    1) When your aspirations are hugely bigger than your means, like in the case of Arsenal, then you have no option but innovate and experiment.

    When you are up against the longest sword in the world, having the second longest sword will make no difference.

    Having a sling, however, is a different matter. Wenger has been trying to find the sling.

    When you experiment, some of them work, some of them don’t.
    As with some players, wage structure, goals conceded etc. etc.

    But with resources a twentieth of the big guys when we first went into the stadium loan, we still have remained in the top 4. There was a time when we could not afford to pay Feyenoord 2.75 million for RVP in one go.

    So there are many things that have worked.

    2) It is foolish to say Wenger knows less about defending than Gambon, you and me.

    I am hoping the coming two seasons will see some success. Let’s see.

  66. Moray

    if the intern at work was paid the same salary as me for sitting round on Facebook all day or sending “clever” Twitter comments, I would fuck off too…

  67. TheBayingMob

    “1) When your aspirations are hugely bigger than your means, like in the case of Arsenal, then you have no option but innovate and experiment.”

    If you consider we have sh1t commercial deals that need sorting and fall way behind Bayern, United, etc., we are (when I last looked) 5th in the Deloitter money list with a turnover of 250m Euro … Only Bayern, United, Real and Barca were above us.

  68. Arse&Nose©

    haha , with Bankia in big trouble we could see C.Ronaldo used as collateral along with other Real Madrid stars.

    Real’s dodge system that has funded their galactico buying spree’s is about to go bust! :D

  69. gambon

    “It is foolish to say Wenger knows less about defending than Gambon”

    I said buy Kompany, Wenger bought Koscielny

    I said buy Cahill, Wenger bought Mertesacker

    I said keep Cole, Wenger sold Cole

    I said replace Clichy, Wenger didnt

    I said Jenkinson was shit, Wenger didnt

    I said we needed a keeper (for the last 5 years)….Wenger knows best

  70. gambon

    A&N

    Dont think it can be called a dodgy system.

    Real have huge borrowing power cos they have huge revenues. They leverage themselves heavily to bring players in that push that revenue up yearly.

    Although it would be funny if Bankia were in £80m debt to Port Vale and the only solution was for Ronaldo to transfer there against his will.

  71. Draper-Corleone

    @TBM,

    If you factor in the stadium debt and billionaire benefactors there are at least 20 clubs in Europe who have bigger spending firepower than Arsenal.

    Commercial deals are the effect of having long term contracts because of the stadium debt. But that is an area that hugely needs improvement.

    If we max out on commercials (MAYBE ANOTHER 30-40 MILLION), we will still be about 100 million behind United and Bayern, 200 behind Barca and Real.

    That’s a 100-200 million year in, year out. Can you even imagine the financial handicap, EVEN WITH THE FFP?

  72. gambon

    “there are at least 20 clubs in Europe who have bigger spending firepower than Arsenal.”

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA

  73. Draper-Corleone

    @gambon

    Just from the top of my head…

    City, Chelsea, United, Liverpool, Spurs in the PL
    The last two have less income than us, but don’t have debt, and benefit from external investments.

    Real, Barca, Malaga in the La Liga
    PSG in Ligue 1
    Milan and Inter in Serie A
    Bayern in Bundesliga
    Anzhi in the Russian league

    That’s 15 without having to look up the detailed financials of all teams. Still want to laugh?

  74. jlp

    Two sperms are swimming along. One of them says to the other,
    “Geez, I’m getting tired! Are we almost to the uterus?”
    And the other one says, “Hell if I know, help me move this
    shit out of the way and I’ll take a look.”