Well, one thing is for sure, Arsenal aren’t messing around this summer.
They know what they want and it’s French, French, French.
The Times reported we’re looking good for Thomas Lemar of Monaco. I think it’s a very good signing, 14 goals and 14 assists is pretty mean going for a 21 year old. He has a great frame, he has pace, great first time touch / pass, promising vision, and he’s very strong. He also had a poster of Samir Nasri in his room as a kid, which I can forgive.
Then there’s the striker story. We’re in for Kylian M’Bappe. I think this is totally true, and it’s a very weird throw of the dice, but exciting all the same. I don’t think we’ll sign him, but look, Arsenal are a big club and Arsene is a big manager for French players who play for Monaco.
Seems like it’ll rest on whether the young Frenchman fancies all the first team action at Arsenal, or whether he fancies moving to play under Zidane at Madrid. Seems like a no-brainer for me, Champions League is overrated anyway.
The whole ‘GO BIG ARSENE’ is absurd to me. Arsenal finally dropping mega money when we’re out of the Champions League and a mile off being title contenders. This all feels a little bit like Theresa May telling disabled people they can’t have benefits, then dropping £1b to keep her job when the DUP come asking. Where was this ambition last summer when we had a platform of 2nd to build from? Where was it the year before when we added just one player? This cash mountain didn’t just appear. It’s been building steadily for years.
The reality is we’re likely going to end up with Lacazette and Lemar. For me, the Kante of this summer is Naby Keita. He powerhoused RB Leipzig to 2nd in the Bundesliga.
For those wondering why Liverpool may shell out €80 million for Naby Keita…
— EiF (@EiF_Highlights) June 26, 2017
He’s basically everything you’d want from Chamberlain. Strong tackler, great range of passing, can score goals, and he breaks the lines with his pace. Would look very sexy next to Ramsey and Xhaka. £80m is a cool bit of business, but if landed him with Lacazette and Lemar… you’ve given the team a boost in my opinion. My gut says Klopp is looking at £80m for a player who is all but there (Naby), or Chamberlain who’d cost him less than half of that… and could prove to be a gem if coached right. You really can’t argue with Liverpool’s game plan this summer, it’s very exciting.
Back to Arsenal, you’d have to sign Keita, Lemar and Lacazette… then keep Ozil or Sanchez to genuinely call the summer progress. The club might argue that’s not possible with £200m outlay, but as we’ve highlighted with some basic maths, there’s a huge amount of dross we could move on for a very good price.
I’m concerned we’re keeping Giroud on the books for another year. I’m concerned the only players we seem to be losing are those we want to keep. I wonder why the club isn’t moving mountains to shift on players who are paid too much. Cut them a deal on their contracts and ship them on if they won’t go. Remove those who are here because they earn too much and reset the culture.
This should be the summer of the machete. I’m watching other clubs make bold move. I’m watching us make moves that don’t seem likely, or don’t feel like they’re addressing fundamental flaws we have in the squad. My fear is we just end up with a young, less experienced version of what we had this season. That’s not progress.
Anyway, we’re recording The AO this evening.
> Three players you’d like to see at The Arsenal next year. Leave a voicemail you hilarious bastards. 30 seconds. THOSE IN THE COMMENTS PULL YOUR FINGER OUT AND GET DIALLING.