Good morning Grovers!
Well, it's not a good morning. It's a horrible morning. It's quite possibly the most miserable start to a June I can rememeber. And that's forgetting the weather...
Just jokes people.
It's all deadly quiet on the transfer front. Arsenal and their master plan of waiting for the rest of the league to get worse seems to be in full swing. Ivan Gazidis knows that you've got to do your business early, which either means he just knows that's what you're supposed to do and he's not doing it. Or we've done all our business already.
I thought it was telling that he said in his press release that the signing of Podolski was pivotal. Why was it pivotal? Nice. Yes. But pivotal we signed a wide man? I'm not sure that would ever be pivotal unless of course you're selling Robin Van Perise.
Which I hope we're not. There's no noise around Manchester City and there's none of the usual rumblings and fanfare you associate with a Spanish club wanting one of your players. It doesn't feel like it's cut and shut with this deal. I still think there's a chance he might stay and from the people I speak to around the Emirates tea rooms... no one knows.
England play France on Monday. I remember back in the day when we were all calling for Arsenal to go out and sign Karim Benzema. You'd be amazed at how many people from around the web shot that suggestion down at the time. Now look at him... absolutely flying as one of the best strikers in the business.
Is it me, or do Arsenal have one of the only fan bases in the world who detest the thought of spending big money on a player? Now, I'm not saying everyone. But the amount of times I read people slagging off a club for paying big money for a player, or having a pop at a players wages.
Take Kagawa for instance. That guy in two seasons has landed two Bundasliga titles, scored 38 goals and helped out with a further 12 goals. He's 23 years old. One of the best attacking midfielders plying their trade in Europe... and people were sniffing at a price tag of £14million up front moving to possibly £17million.
What's that all about?
Gazidis has a part to play in this. He said the other night that he doesn't feel a club shows ambition by signing a £30million player. He also said ten years ago £10million was a massive transfer fee. Let's go through a bit of transfer history for Ivan.
- Dennis Bergkamp - £7.5million - 1995 (A club with £14 a year commercial revenues back then)
- Alan Shearer - £15million - 1996
- Nic Anelka - £22.5million - 1999
- Veron - £28.1million - 2001
- Ferdinand - £29.8million - 2002
- Crespo - £35.5million- 2000
- Denilson - £21.5million - 1998
- Zidane - £53million - 2001
As you can see, 10 years ago, a £10million transfer was just as paltry as it is now. Man up Ivan. Spending £30million on a player doesn't necessarily show ambition. Bottling out of signing a player because they cost more than £15million shows that you have no ambition to compete at the top level of football.It shows your best players that you're not serious about becoming the best and it shows that you're cash hoarders.
It's not like we're Everton here. We know there's a £50million slush fund available. We know we're spending £50million more a season on player wages than Spurs, yet they seem to have more 'superstars' than us.
Again, I know I'm bagging on Ivan here when we all know the real problem is the only man who can sanction deals.
You don't give a manager total trust and then tell him he can't spend £17million on Yann M'Vila. Wenger is stuck in 1998, not Ivan Gazidis. Well, that's my opinion anyway.
Also, a little snippet I heard... the reason we might not be so double keen for the French defensive midfielder is because we've got our sights set on Javier Martinez of Athletic Bilbao. He fits the bill. Super star Spaniard. Fast, technically amazing, can play centre half if called upon to do so. The move feels a bit out of our league, but we're looking at him. Which excites me. I can't see us paying the reported £30mill for him... and if I'm honest, we'll probably end up with Biglia (sounds like something you'd buy off a weed counter in Amsterdam), but rest assured people, we've definitly lodged a £4.5million bid for the best defensive midfielder in Europe.
Right, that's all I have for you today.
P.S. Did you see all that Harry Redknapp stuff? I told you he was unhappy at Spurs on the 21st. Isn't it funny... Daniel Levy won't offer him more than a 1 year deal. Have that 'Arry!
[twitter-follow screen_name='LeGrove' show_count='yes']