Analysis of the catalyst for change: How will new names impact performance?

by & filed under News Review.


So the machinations of progress continue to power on. The club hired Per Mertesacker to manage the academy. The big German retiring from football to make some magic happen with the kids.

This is a sound move. Per is very smart, very well respected at the club and I’m pretty sure he has a deep knowledge about the game. He’s won league titles, he’s won World Cups and he’s played consistently in the Champions League. I think he’s also very good for the culture at club. He’s a natural leader and a good communicator.

Hard to see any downsides to an appointment like this. I love Thierry Henry, but can’t help but think the Frenchman will have to work very hard to be a great manager. Per has all the attributes needed already, he doesn’t need to work on his personality, he just needs to fuel himself with knowledge and rack up those coaching badges.

I do wonder how much control Wenger imposes on the managers in the lower teams. How much autonomy will the German have? How many of his own ideas will he be able to implement?

The club looks like it’s moving in the right direction, but I do disagree with the people messaging me stating that the catalyst for change is being enacted, thinking that somehow the structure of the club is changing.

We are adding bodies. Not removing them. When a new alpha lion takes over a pride, he doesn’t keep the cubs there and he doesn’t keep the previous leader of the pack in the back office.

He starts a fresh. He brings in a new Director of Lions, and he sorts out his backroom team accordingly.

Jokes aside, it’s difficult to call the current movement at Arsenal anything outside shuffling of the deck.

Darren Burgess comes in to oversee Shad Forsythe who is doing a great job already. Tony Colbert still remains. He’s Wenger’s go to. He’s grossly underqualified. But he’s still there. People can bleat on about how great Burgess is, but my question is this: What problem is he solving? If there is one, it’s minimal. Also worth noting he’s not here for basically the whole of preseason and he’s a shared resource with AUSTRAILIA. How many points did we lose to a lack of fitness last season? I don’t have an answer, but this sort of hire makes little sense considering how much progress we’ve made with injuries (with the context that Wenger still loves to overplay his stars).

Huss Fahmy is coming in to take care of the backend of contract negotiations. He’s an administrator that works off Wenger instructions. I really don’t see where the value is here, or why it’s a story. Dick Law remains.

Per Mertesacker takes over the Academy and fills a vacancy. This is his first job.

Jens Lehmann comes in as a first team coach. This is his first job.

Sal Bibbo isn’t a new signing.

I think these signings are positive. None are damaging. But be real with yourself here. These signings are either political, or they’re additive. They’re not trailblazing signings that are going to impact what happens on the pitch. None of these names impact the biggest problem we have at the club, Arsene Wenger’s power grip.

If anything, we are more dependent on him than ever.

What would I like to have seen?

Firstly, we should have hired a strong Director of Football. That person should have hired in January, and been allowed to conduct a thorough investigation into the club, and report back into the CEO with a plan of action.

From there, a list of positions that needed to be filled should have been drawn up but an external recruitment agency that specialises in that sort of thing.

Then a rigorous interview process should have taken place, the candidates should have presented their vision for taking their specific department forward and a decision should have been made by a group of stakeholders including the manager.

That is how a professional outfit operates.

Not going along with the whims of a failing manager.

The path to success under Wenger has landed us in 5th place and as a laughing stock of Europe. Our solve is give the architect the power to hire someone off a recco from a friend, and to entrench his position of power further. We’re topping up a broken vision, when we should be either hiring a new manager, or redirecting the path with someone who has implemented a successful vision elsewhere.

It is what it is. Fans have severe amnesia and a blindness to the past when it comes to our summers.

Lacazette is exciting. Bringing old players back is the right thing to do. Hunting down Thomas Lemar has us all whooping for more.

… but if the foundations are rotten. It doesn’t matter who you switch in and out. The house will eventually collapse.

That’s my two pennies.

The changes are not strong enough and the structure of power is the same.

Rinse and repeat. Same as ever.

Also, happy Pride!


495 Responses to “Analysis of the catalyst for change: How will new names impact performance?”

Jump to comment form ↓

  1. Jim Lahey

    @CA –

    “hold on then Walcott, so you are not a ST anymore then despite about five years of telling us you were?”

    Wasn’t he threatening to leave at one point if he wasn’t giving a role as a ST?? Then that role wasn’t given to him and he has remained quite ever since…

    I actually just saw an article where he is “determined to fight for his place”. How many seasons have we seen articles like this?? I am sick to death of it, he doesn’t want to fight for his place, he wants his £120k a week.

  2. steve


    “And Emirates, calling winning the FAC twice winning “the double” is pretty lame. If this is a long-standing practice in England, fine, but my understanding is “the double” refers to what you accomplish in a single season, e.g., winning the league and the league cup or FAC. You are, IMO, trying to make our FACs sound more important or glamorous than they were.”


    He’s not even talking about winning the FA-cup consecutively. He meant that we beat Leicester twice. He’s celebrating the “we beat the Champions twice-trophy”.

  3. Emiratesstroller

    Jim Lahey

    You analyse perfectly my feelings about Walcott. He can and does score occasionally good goals, but his performance level does not merit playing for Arsenal and being paid £140 K pw.

    He should have been offloaded years ago and now sadly he is part of the furniture with very little resale value. How many clubs will pay a transfer fee of
    £20 million plus his wages?

    The case for Wilshire and Gibbs is slightly different, because both were players who came through our Academy. Neither merits a place in our squad, but
    knowing Wenger I agree with some of comments that he may well hold
    onto Wilshire.

  4. Cesc Appeal


    Fight for his role?

    Walcott could not fight his way out of a wet paper bag.

    When I think of a player who completely lacks fight, character and a spine I think of Walcott. Gibbs too.

    That is exactly it, he wants to fight for his premium seat pitch side where he earns a ridiculous sum a week for f**k all.

  5. Emiratesstroller


    the point I made was that Leicester lost only three games all season when they
    won the Title. Two of those defeats were against us.

    So whilst some may consider that season to be a freak of nature Leicester were
    still a difficult team to beat.

  6. Jim Lahey

    @ES –

    On Walcott, its east to step back look at all the goals he scored last season and think he still has a place at Arsenal, but when you look deeper those goals meant very little to Arsenal in terms of progress, sure he did secure points for us last season, but not enough to warrant his giant salary.

    But its not just the goals, he is a spineless player, there is no leadership qualities in him. He provides no defensive cover, he seems to stick to a defender so not to be open to receive a pass, he gets himself into offside positions so frequently you’d have to ask if he is doing it on purpose!

    I don’t know how many times I have seen him take a ball and run straight into the nearest opposition and lose possession.

    I have zero time for him, he is being paid an elite wage and can’t even start for Arsenal.

  7. Rambo Ramsey

    ‘What is the point of this guy?’ is something you can ask of all our British core. I do find it ironic that the one that gets most stick is probably the best of the lot.

    Compare what Ramsey, Wilshere, Gibbs, Chamberlain and Welbeck have done for the club and Walcott looks like a King. Ironic considering he’s the least talented out of all of them.

  8. Jim Lahey

    @CA –

    Gibbs is another I have no time for, 10 years at the club and happy to play second fiddle to anyone who walks in. Walcott and Gibbs are the living embodiment of what Arsenal Football Club has become.

  9. Dissenter

    I thought Walcott’s off-hand comments about Lacazette reminding him of Defoe was downright silly.
    The club just made a record signing and Walcott tags him wrongly so quickly.
    Anyone who’s seen Lacazette play knows he’s nothing like Defoe.

    Walcott is the embodiment of players being too comfortable in a club. He would have been the first to go if Wenger had fallen. That’s how a new manager would have made a declarative statement,

  10. Emiratesstroller

    Jim Lahey

    The reaction to Walcott is very similar to that of fans to Wenger. They remind
    me of Marmite. Fans either love or hate them. I have no liking of Marmite and that is how I view both Walcott and Wenger.

  11. Dissenter

    I thought it was apt that Theo’ 100th goalmfor Arsenal was scored against the famous Sutton United.
    Theo is an underwhelming player who knew how to hold th club over a barrel. The only things quality about Theo were his excellent agents.
    He couldn’t even muster a performance after Southgate dropped him.

    I was wrong to suggest he’s worth £30 million, no one will be stupid to pay that transfer fee and 140k weekly wages for him

  12. Dissenter

    Only 60% of the tickets for Arsenal’s Australian tour have been sold. Liverpool and Chelsea’s games were gone in days. It just shows how we ar declining as a global marketing product.

  13. Jim Lahey

    @ES & Dissenter –

    I wonder how many times we need to go down this road before mistakes are realised? How many times do we give mediocre players wages far above their ability, only to have them then be unsellable due to the fact that no other club would match their wages?

  14. Emiratesstroller


    As far as I am aware Chelsea and Liverpool are not travelling to Australia.

    If you are going to make a comparison what is the ticket situation in China where both Arsenal and Chelsea are playing?

  15. China

    Yeah lol Walcott is such a strange example of a player

    He’s the least talented and most productive

    But he’s still such a fucking walnut that for all of the genuinely good shit he’s done, he’ll always have a career overshadowed by moments like jumping over the ball at city

    That remains one of my all time favourite baffling/comical moments. I stood up shouting at my screen in disbelief it was the weirdest moment ever

    If we’re to sell our British core frankly he should be the last to be sold because it’s really true that his output has consistently been the best of our British lads bar one or two exceptions (Ramsey wonder season)

    But how could anyone be sorry to see the guy leave knowing how far out of his depth he is as Freddie ljungburg’s long time replacement?

  16. Jim Lahey

    @China –

    “But how could anyone be sorry to see the guy leave knowing how far out of his depth he is as Freddie ljungburg’s long time replacement?”

    Taking the number 14 shirt didn’t help his cause either…

  17. Champagne charlie

    Walcott hurt himself with that interview imo.

    What 28 year old pro at a top club states hey don’t follow football and “isn’t really interested” when he leaves the training pitch.

    Face palm moment I though. There he is exposing the real reason he’s not progressed as a talent, absolutely no desire to replicate others or take notes where possible. Turns up, gets told to do some training, goes home to the family. Nice life Theo, shame being the best you can be wasmy worth the effort or money we contribute.

  18. China

    To the best of my knowledge the Arsenal Chelsea game in china is sold out.

    We bought our tickets like 2 days after it went on sale and availability was already down majorly. I’ll let you guys know on the day though.

    I got a ticket on the sad dream that it would be my first chance to see our new manager


    You guys might be surprised by the prices though. I got average tickets for £80. Most expensive were £180….. for a preseason friendly….

  19. China

    Yeah Charlie but we also know Arsenal training methods involve zeroninsteuctions so it’s more like turn up and have a 5 a side kick around with the boys then go cash your cheque

  20. China

    Yeah lol I considered writing that he was Henry’s replacement because he was hyped as that and took the number, but his walnuttiness condemned him to a life time shunted out wide instead so thought I’d call him Freddie’s instead haha

  21. qna

    Wallace: the 19 goals, i imagined them?

    You didnt imaging them. Just like you didnt imagine Jermain Defoe’s goals last season. But the market puts a value on these players. I don’t. Who is in for Walcott? Or Defoe for that matter. Just because he is an Arsenal player doesnt give him any additional or less value. He is worth whatever someone is willing to pay for him. And what ever that value is the effective player we have on our books.

  22. Carts

    “Walcott hurt himself with that interview imo.”

    Ther a link to that interview, can’t seem to find it.

    I recall Bobby Zamora saying something similar several seasons ago while being paid through the nose at QPR

  23. qna

    Walcott is a player with some major weapons but some equally serious flaws in his game. He is actually a very good finisher and of course he has his speed. But he only has very few tricks. So he is useful in very limited circumstances. A good player to have as a substitute. However, he has been one of our highest paid earners for some time. You need to spend your limited wage bill intelligently and it is simply not smart to have Walcott in the squad.

    The fact that no other club is showing interest in players like Ozil and Walcott say a heck of a lot. I am sure that many teams would love to see if either of those would fit in their team. But to see, they will have to take a massive gamble because of both transfer fee and more importantly wages. If the gamble doesn’t work, its a massive dead weight that they take on. Its a risk not worth taking. I would love to sell both of these players and bring in some new talent coming through.

  24. qna

    For me the biggest disappointment of the transfer window so far, in terms of players that moved clubs that we didn’t sign, is Lacazette’s teammate Tolisso. He would have been the perfect signing for us and only cost Bayern 35m. Having missed him, we are now showing no interest in Bakayoko either.

    The fact that Wenger is going to go into this season with one of Ramsey, Coquelin or Elneny as a starting CM along side Xhaka is pure incompetence. Disgraceful. We absolutely must buy a quality CM for this team.

  25. Rambo Ramsey

    Is Abramovich losing interest in his toy-thing Chelsea? They’re becoming increasingly shoddy in transfer windows.

  26. TR7

    “Barcelona rumoured to be interested in Ramsey? Please fucking god let this happen”

    If true it could be the best thing to happen in this transfer window. Can’t find any credible link to the rumor though.

  27. Marko

    Agree qna but I’m hopeful. Rumours of a cheap bid for Jorginho and rumoured interest in Seri and Goretska hopefully means that we’re in for a midfielder. Hopefully but there is just as every chance that he’ll be scared off by some of the prices knocking about and roll with Coquelin and Wilshere for another season. Big mistake for me

  28. Marko

    They’re becoming increasingly shoddy in transfer windows.

    As Arsenal fans will tell ya it’s early days. Besides 20 million for Ake ain’t shoddy. They’re struggling to get players in for sure but up until recently so was everyone except City

  29. Bamford10

    That Walcott quote explains a lot. Not really a footballer. I like him even less now, if that is possible.

  30. qna

    Marko: Agree qna but I’m hopeful. Rumours of a cheap bid for Jorginho and rumoured interest in Seri and Goretska hopefully means that we’re in for a midfielder. Hopefully but there is just as every chance that he’ll be scared off by some of the prices knocking about and roll with Coquelin and Wilshere for another season. Big mistake for me

    Criminal, but anything else would be the surprise. Goretzka would be brilliant. He would change my perspective on our chances completely. I would back us for top 4 with him and if we keep Sanchez. We could have a crack at the league if we added Lemar on top of that. But I expect Sanchez to leave in which case it would require all the new players to adjust to the league instantly in order to make top 4.

    Mustafi Koscielny Sead
    Oxlaide Goretzka Xhaka Lemar
    Ozil Lacazette Sanchez

  31. Ishola70

    Rambo Ramsey:
    “Is Abramovich losing interest in his toy-thing Chelsea? They’re becoming increasingly shoddy in transfer windows.”

    lol. What made you come out with that?

    Rudiger? That’s a good signing. Would have liked him at Arsenal. Very physical strong defender. Reminds me a bit of Sol Campbell in his style of play.

  32. Cesc Appeal

    Dani Ceballos, a favourite of some on here, has signed for Real Madrid it seems.

    Wonder where they will play him, or how much game time he will get. Casemiro, Kroos and Modric must be pretty nailed on for the midfield, and they have players like Isco and James to try and squeeze in as it is?

  33. Marko

    Oh yeah they signed Rudiger. If they end up signing Rudiger and Sandro and we end up signing just Kolasinac on the defensive side after conceding 60+ goals now that would be shoddy.

  34. TR7

    Abrahmvic is a very astute businessman. He made the initial capital investment that was needed to push Chelsea on and now reckons he doesn’t need to put his own money anymore. Chelsea operate very smartly in transfer market now. They sold Luiz for 50M and bought the same player back for 30M. Their extensive loan system web is also reaping rich dividends. They are selling academy and fringe players for good money. Missing out on Luakau could very well turn out to be a blessing in disguise. They have replaced Terry with Rudiger and brought Bakayoko in. All that they need now is one striker if Costa leaves. They’re doing okay I would think.

  35. Marko

    Dani Ceballos, a favourite of some on here, has signed for Real Madrid it seems.

    He’s a red hot prospect alright but Asensio is my baby. That lad is going to be outstanding. If he adds goals consistently to his game he’ll be one of the very best around. But a big money move for Cabellos and a new contract for Isco must mean Kovacic and James are off.

  36. Jim Lahey

    “But a big money move for Cabellos and a new contract for Isco must mean Kovacic and James are off.”

    Wouldn’t mind picking up any one of those guys..

  37. Marko

    Also have Marco Llorente on the books there. A highly rated DM who was on loan at Alaves last season and done well in the under 21’s there. Yeah Madrid are looking alright in that area. He’s likely to go on loan again he’s got hunger to play

  38. Jim Lahey

    @Marko –

    I honestly think that would work, James or Isco straight swap for Ozil, the Madrid fans still love Ozil and would be glad to see him back, also at worst he would be replacing one of the aforementioned on the bench.. so its not like it would be a major gamble for Madrid.

  39. Bamford10

    I would love to swap Ozil for either James or Isco. James a little over Isco for me, as he is quicker.

  40. Cesc Appeal


    I have not, I have seen it around a lot. A lot of YouTube players seem to stream it. Any good?


    Always had Kovacic as an option for CM next to Xhaka. I thought we might be able to steal him away as he is young, needs games and is not getting them regularly enough. Now with Ceballos signing I really think we could tempt them with a decent offer and still get a relative bargain.

    Shove Wilshere out, or try to and bring Kovacic in.

    On James being surplus at Madrid. Two things, one I am not sure he could cut it in the EPL, admittedly I did not watch a lot of him before Madrid. But do people think he would handle the intense physicality of the league? Also, Madrid will likely look for big, big money for him, £60 Million plus.

    Moot anyway, no way Wenger forces Ozil out and no club even remotely at the top level is interested in Ozil.

    Would like to see us try and get a deal done for Kovacic and then try and get a relative bargain deal done with Goretzka because of his contract. Ship out Wilshere and one of Coq or Elneny, call time on Caz (even if he does just run down a year on his deal) and look to phase Ramsey and Ozil out to reshape the side over the next year.

    Xhaka, having two players like Kovacic and Goretzka flanking him at CM would be how you need to set up with him. Lemar on one flank, Lacazette through the middle and then a pacey, goal threat outlet on the next flank you could buy next summer.

    That is my preference in a team. Xhaka the CDM sitting deep, Kovacic the steady CM, Goretzka the more ball carrying CM, Lemar wide playmaker, Lacazette at ST and then a pacey wideman next summer with Ozil going out on a free.

  41. Marko

    No way Wenger gives up on Wilshere and Ramsey in the same window. I’d prefer Goretska to Kovacic but either one walks into our starting 11. That’s how shit our midfield is

  42. qna

    Kovacic-Xhaka-Gotetzka would be amazing.

    Sell Gibbs, Oxlaide, and Wilshere and it should be enough to do that too.

  43. Jim Lahey

    @CA –

    It is simultaneously both the most addictive and frustrating game I have ever played.. Solo play can be a bit tedious were you can find yourself running across the map for 20 minutes only to get sniped from some shithead in the bushes, but playing with a friend or within a group is what the game was made for.

    I can’t tell if its the game or my internet connection, but my laptop is struggling with it, all setting on low and still struggling.. and its a year old Alienware 13..

  44. Rambo Ramsey

    Mid July approaching and still no bid for Sanchez, no noise from the player’s side either. What is going on I wonder.

  45. Johnsgiles

    Sky bet closed betting on sanchez moving to man city bye bye then

    Typical ‘we won’t sell….’ Then do same as rvp

  46. Rambo Ramsey

    Ozil says he was excited to see Kolasinac complete his move to the Emirates and even spoke to Germany team-mate Draxler about his potential.

    ‘I’ve spoken to a few players who have played with him at Schalke, like Draxler,’ Ozil told Arsenal Player.

    ‘They said to me that Sead is a really good player with a character that will fit our team.

    ‘What I’ve seen of him on the training pitch so far is that he’s very strong, but character-wise he seems to be a really nice guy. We’re happy to have him in our team.’

    Another nice guy?

  47. WestLondonGoon

    I’d sell Koscielny at this point as well; 31, can’t apparently complete 90 mins anymore due to a combination of a weak achilles, poor decision making and awful tackling technique.

    That said, he’d probably fetch £25m in today’s market, add another £25m to that and get Van Dijk from Southampton, 5 years younger, 3 inches taller and very comfortable on the ball. We would get at least 2 full contracts out of him.

  48. jwl

    When David Bentley retired a couple seasons ago, I remember reading a few articles that said there are many, many players like Theo, they don’t give a fcuk about football, they are just there to make money.

  49. Johnsgiles

    Sky bet on sanchez to man city was suspended yesterday , just Reopened it but still a worry if they became convinced it was about to be anounced

  50. Marko

    The only significance to the club’s social media harping on about Sanchez today is because it’s 3 years to the day that he signed for the club and that’s it.

  51. Carts


    I don’t think it’s uncommon at all.

    But when you publicise it, you create disdain from fans who pay through the japs eye, whether it’s to watch games live or from the comfort of their living room.

    Show a bit more discretion, would be my advice.

    I’d expect it from a boxer, where the motto tends to be “if the money is right..”

  52. Carts

    Van Dyke (and Wanyama) we majorly overlooked. They were both available for £10m a piece, ffs.

    Several posters in here campaigned for Wanyama and Van Dyke that far back

  53. raptora

    One thing about Walcott is he’s always had a goal in him vs the elite sides. He’s been rising to the occasion then going back to his usual averageness. I’ve always had sympathy towards him but I can tell that he could be twice the player he is if he had the required ambition to compete on the highest level. Good career for sure but an easily forgetable one.

  54. TR7

    Anyone else baffled by our decision on Sczesney ? How can a keeper be good enough for Juventus but not for us ? Even his detractors admit he is immensely talented, the only thing lacking was discipline which he seems to have worked on.

  55. Cesc Appeal


    Perhaps it is a case of once Wenger’s authority has been challenged the player is a no go?


    I will have to have a look at that then. Always wanted to give the ARMA mods a try but never got round to it.

  56. gonsterous

    in today’s market, being young and English, wally is definitely a 30m player.. also he has the stats (which is important when selling a player)

  57. Jim Lahey

    “One thing about Walcott is he’s always had a goal in him vs the elite sides.”

    List of goals Walcott has scored for Arsenal against big clubs over the last 11 seasons.

    Su 25Feb 2007 – Chelsea – 1 Goal – Chelsea 2 – 1 Arsenal

    Sa 18Apr 2009 – Chelsea – 1 Goal – Arsenal 1 – 2 Chelsea

    We 31Mar 2010 – Barcelona – 1 Goal – Arsenal 2 – 2 Barcelona
    Mo 27Dec 2010 – Chelsea – 1 Goal – Arsenal 3 – 1 Chelsea

    Su 28Aug 2011 – Man United – 1 Goal – Man United 8 – 2 Arsenal
    Sa 29Oct 2011 – Chelsea – 1 Goal – Chelsea 3 – 5 Arsenal

    Su 20Jan 2013 – Chelsea – 1 Goal – Chelsea 2 – 1 Arsenal
    We 30Jan 2013 – Liverpool – 1 Goal – Liverpool 2 – 2 Arsenal
    Su 28Apr 2013 – Man United – 1 Goal – Arsenal 1 – 1 Man United
    Sa 14Dec 2013 – Man City – 2 Goals – Man City 6 – 3 Arsenal

    Mo 21Dec 2015 – Man City – 1 Goal – Arsenal 2 – 1 Man City

    Su 14Aug 2016 – Liverpool – 1 Goal – Arsenal 3 – 4 Liverpool
    Sa 24Sep 2016 – Chelsea – 1 Goal – Arsenal 3 – 0 Chelsea
    Su 18Dec 2016 – Man City – 1 Goal – Man City 2 – 1 Arsenal

    Tu 07Mar 2017 – Bayern Munich – 1 Goal – Munich 5 – 1 Arsenal
    Su 02Apr 2017 – Man City – 1 Goal – Arsenal 2 – 2 Man City

    Make of that what you will..

  58. Jim Lahey

    “in today’s market, being young and English, wally is definitely a 30m player.. also he has the stats (which is important when selling a player)”

    He is 28…

  59. Carts

    Wojiech wouldn’t come back to us even if offered him the opportunity.

    Didn’t he make a comment about how he’d learnt more at Roma in one season than he had at Arsenal??

    Who’s our GK coach? Peyton, he’s past it..

    Cech, who was already regressing a bit at Chelsea, then eventually nudged out by Courtois, looks bang average for us.

    I remember saying that if he’s not good for Chelsea then how is he good enough for us? I got no response cos his fanboys we’re foaming both out the mouth and mushroom tip..

  60. Bamford10


    I’m a little baffled by our selling of Szczesny too, but I’m with Cesc: Shez questioned / was critical of Wenger / the club, and that is unacceptable to Wenger.

  61. Carts


    Nah, let Walcott leave. I’ve seen more than enough of him. Yeah he’s notched a fair few goals against the better teams but that doesn’t support his case to stay.

  62. James wood

    Oxford Dictionary. Definition of a PONSE.?

    To seek or obtain something without paying for it.

    Yes that’s Walcott a long term PONSE.

  63. Cesc Appeal


    My thinking is a change of team and system. So that by the start of next season, not this one coming in a few weeks, but next year you look different.

    New GK
    Bellerin, Mustafi, Kozz, Kolasinac
    Kovacic, Xhaka, Goretzka
    New RW, Lacazette, Lemar

    All about personal preferences etc, but that is easily achievable particularly given Kovacic’s and Goretzka’s situations.

    Obviously some arguments that Holding might be a starter by then if his progress continues and Kozz starts to show his age.

  64. Relieable Sauce

    Real Madrid bought their Modric replacement before he needs replacing.

    Meanwhile, back at Arsenal, Wenger is trying to convince Ox he is a wing back.

    Lol lol lol

  65. Carts


    All you need to do is look at what happened to him after his slip of the tongue vs Palace last season.

    Surely StatDNA or whoever the fuck they are should be telling Wenger “look – Theo – 17 goals against big teams over 11 seasons.. 5 of those coming in wins”.

    It’s one of two things – is he really a player that should be the 3rd highest earner if he’s can’t even cement his place in the starting 11?

  66. Marko

    Fuck Chesney fuck. Sign Timo Horn or Bernd Leno or Sergio Rico much better keepers. Apparently we’re being linked with young hotshot Toulouse keeper Alban Lafont. A year as number two to eventually replace Cech makes sense

  67. Carts


    Are PSG still looking to replace Kevin Trapp?

    Seb Rulli at Sociedad is decent, but I think his buy out clause is only applicable to City

  68. Jim Lahey

    @Carts –

    Its funny, its not Walcott’s output that annoys me, 19 goals in a season is a decent haul for any winger, its the other aspects of his game. Refusal to track back, cutting himself out of play so as not to be open for a pass, his relentless need to be offside, his inability to pass a ball 10 yards.. I can’t watch the guy try to kick a ball only to have him fall on his ass like a 5 year old again..

  69. China

    My best memory Wally was back in the CL vs Liverpool when he beasyed down the wing and set up an entirely ungrateful adebayor to score in the second half

    Ade didn’t even look at him to thank him the prick

  70. China

    Walnut actually has a good right foot

    The problem is that neither his left nor his right foot have any idea what the other is going to do next…

  71. Daz

    If we kept Szczesny he would just be another overpayed underperformer who cant hold down a starting spot, add him to the list of players who are in it for the money he doesn’t even pretend to be professional. Im sure had he stayed our number 1 rather than being loaned out people would be calling for his head

  72. Jim Lahey

    @China –

    “Apart from the forehead can anyone tell me what’s the difference between walnut and Gervinho?”

    As bad as Gervinho was he at least showed for the ball! Although… we wish he didn’t. I remember seeing his first home game for Arsenal thinking “He is a little raw… it’ll come good with time!” How wrong I was!

  73. TR7


    Was Gervinho really that bad ? If fans hadn’t turned against him he would have done much better. I loved how he could beat players with his dribbling and pace. Lack of composure killed his career.

  74. Jim Lahey

    @TR7 –

    To be honest he wasn’t as shit as we all make him out to be, he was in a tough position from day one having been the replacement for both Nasri and Fabregas! So I think the fans were impatient from the get go. Missing some clangers didn’t help… But I feel he was a bit of a scapegoat. He did alright with Roma didn’t he?

  75. Jamie

    Yes, Gervinho was atrocious. No use beating 2 defenders simply to scuff every single change he created for himself and putting the ball out of play, which he did.

    His finishing was on par with Sanogo’s. Literally no composure in front of goal.

  76. Sanmi

    Gervinho has great build up play but terrible end product. Theo has terrible build up but great end product.

    Theos end product is actually better than hazard’s that’s how effective he is when he’s around the post

  77. Samir

    So Juve have offered €10m for Douglas Costa on an initial loan deal with an obligation to buy him permanently for €30m at the end of the 2017/18 campaign.

    We should be sending Sanchez to Bayern if he isn’t going to sign.

    Douglas Costa + 30M would be fine.

  78. James wood

    Never been a fan of Walcott a made footballer.
    I honestly believe he would have struggled in the
    Championship without he’s one time pace.

    Think I was spoiled by real wingers like Overmars etc

  79. Samir

    Or Rabiot + 30M and Sanchez to PSG.
    Sort this shit out Arsenal.
    Same goes for Ozil and Ox, if you don’t want to sign, sell them and replace ASAP.

  80. TR7

    With you Sameer on both Costa and Rabiot proposals. I was wrongly under the impression Costa was already signed by Juventus.

  81. Marko

    Sounds good to me Samir. In fact I might even chance my arm for Rabiot and Lucas Moura straight swap or Rabiot and Aurier considering Dani Alves is apparently going there. I mean if Sanchez has his heart set on leaving

  82. Cesc Appeal

    Sadly we do not have much chance of Rabiot now, not that I think we were looking anyway, not with Verratti trying to escape his ‘imprisonment’ (fuck Barcelona).

    Would be top rate though, is going to go on to become a complete midfielder, world class.

    Always thought PSG would be the only club we could mug off for Ozil. But I doubt even that with Draxler there and there need to add some steel once Verratti goes.

  83. Rambo Ramsey

    Pablo‏ @AFCAMDEN
    Told again yesterday that Alexis Sanchez will not be sold this window, and Arsenal remain hopeful he will sign a new contract. #afc

  84. Cesc Appeal


    I would completely go in with a big offer for Rabiot and maybe put a skirt on Ramsey, bit of lipstick and then walk him up and down in front of the Nou Camp, he can go in the same bin as Song, Vermaelen and others at Barcelona that make you think ‘the f**k were they thinking?’

  85. Samir

    When Arsenal say Sanchez won’t be sold, do not believe it. They’re just trying to get a good price!
    Never could I imagine Arsenal letting a player leave on a free when they can get 50M or so for them. In my eyes, he either signs or goes. Same with the Ox. Ozil however, I can’t see many being interested in him.

    Do not forget this club is run on a ‘self-sufficient’ model.

  86. Cesc Appeal

    In the same way Monaco told Arsenal to forget about Lemar a couple of weeks ago, then said for nothing less than £80 Million would they even think about letting him go, to now suddenly being rumoured to be holding out for about £53 Million. If the price is right Arsenal will sell.

    Likely City would have to pay a premium, but if it is there Arsenal will sell.

  87. Rambo Ramsey

    The major difference is that Arsenal’s interest in Lemar is well documented, multiple sources report news of bids being made. Can’t say the same about Manchester City’s supposed ‘chasing’ of Sanchez. No news of inquiries, nothing about any bids, nada.

  88. freddylekgunner

    Rambo agreed, personally i think if Sanchez is leaving he’ll have to force the move a bit as the clubs are not really in for him (at least for now). The potential transfer fee and his wage demands may force clubs to look elsewhere especially at his age. At the other hand I don’t think Arsenal will want him to walk free next summer.

  89. Jeff

    Sanchez, Gibbs and Debuchy absent from the Australia trip. Oh dear – about Sanchez. That’s very ominous.

  90. Cesc Appeal


    Sanchez, Mustafi, Chambers, they have all been given time off. Anyone who participated in summer tournaments.

    Gibbs, Debuchy, Szczseny and Jenkinson for sure likely means they are off.

    Pissed off Walcott is there. Commercial airliners do not have eject seats unfortunately.

  91. Jeff


    But they don’t have to do anything? All they have to do is enjoy the ride. They don’t have to play. I’m just thinking that if Sanchez was leaving, that is exactly what he would do – i.e. stay off the plane. I hope you’re right of course that he stays.

  92. Cesc Appeal


    I think we will sell him ultimately. But I would not worry about his not going to Australia.

    The club may be trying to finalise Lemar before it happens.

  93. Jeff


    If we sell Sanchez, I think our chances of winning a title diminish significantly even with Lemar. I know that getting new players in the summer is like hope springs eternal but it’s all laced with a big helping of delusion as well. These players that we’ve got so far (even assuming Lemar as well) aren’t going to set the PL on fire. We need all the talent we can get our hands on. Selling Sanchez will be a huge loss.

  94. freddylekgunner

    Jeff I don’t we’ll win the league but at least it’ll be exciting to watch Arsenal again if we manage to keep Sanchez or sign Lemar

  95. Marc


    1) Sanchez will get an extended break because of the Confederations Cup.

    2) We will definitely sell to the highest bidder – i.e. we won’t approach Munich and say you can have him for £20 million to help meet his wage demands.

    3) There’s no chance of winning a title with or without Sanchez or any replacement.

  96. Jeff


    Your third point is inaccurate. There is never no chance – because bigger miracles have happened in the PL. However, there is definitely LESS chance if he goes. We all know where the cancer is but nobody knows how to cut it out.

  97. Marc


    Come on don’t waste you time arguing a beyond remote possibility is a serious chance.

    Personally I think 4th will be a major stretch. City, Chelsea and Liverpool top 3 (in what ever order) us, Utd and the Spud’s fighting for 4th with maybe Everton pushing one of those out of 6th.

  98. freddylekgunner

    3) There’s no chance of winning a title with or without Sanchez or any replacement


  99. champagne charlie


    What on earth suggests Liverpool will be battling City/Chelsea for the title, whilst we’ll be fighting Spurs and United for 4th?

    You must confuse Salah with Messi..

  100. Jeff

    Yeah crazy stuff. Can’t believe how close this match is. Nadal has saved 3 match points now – the last one being in the final set. It’s still going.

  101. Samesong

    The real test always come in January not even worth thinking about titles until you get past that month.

  102. Samesong


    If Muller had executed some easy shots earlier game would of been over. Nadal thought is a fighter.

  103. Jeff


    I know it’s so stressful watching this. It’s almost as though they’re going out of their way to make it exciting for the crowds.

  104. Jeff

    I don’t know why the final set can’t be a tie breaker as well. Maybe a longer tie break – say finish at 11 instead of 7. This could go on till one of them drops.

  105. Jeff

    Federer will probably retire once he reaches magic 20 – unless of course he wins two more in quick succession, then perhaps even more. But I have to say, compared to a year or so ago when he looked down and out, he’s playing some of his best tennis at 35 going on 36. Remarkable when you think about it. 18 to the good and counting.

  106. Marc

    Freddy / Charlie

    Didn’t say Liverpool would challenge for the title think they’ll be 3rd behind City and Chelsea.

    I also think the Spud’s will have a tough couple of seasons, being saying this for months but I can see our season falling apart very quickly. 7 points from our first 5 league matches is a reasonable view at the moment, that return with selling Sanchez to City and the fans will be straight back to last season only worse.