Merry Christmas to everyone this fine and festive morning!
There’s not much news from our end today, this post is more an opportunity to thank all of you guys for logging on everyday, come rain or shine, come spanking or huge victory. I want to thank those who have made the site an amazing place to chat football every morning. Truly, without you, and the world class writing (jokes) we serve up, we’d just be another Arsenal blog clogging up Newsnow everyday.
Next year shall bring many exciting things. We have a podcast booked in for definite. That’ll launch in the new year or maybe even before. Geoff will likely be able to spend a bit more time blogging, bring a bit of ying to my yang. We’re also on schedule to hit a mid-January redesign target. Don’t worry, the move won’t be as chaotic as the last one. We’ll make sure we run the new site parallel and we’ll open it up to your suggestions for amendments. Either way, the user experience is key to this design, so you won’t be disappointed. I’ll also be starting work on a 3 part autobiography and Geoff is working on his first perfume range… Scent of a French Bear.
Other than that, we’ll just keep on writing until you’re bored. So once again, a massive thanks to everyone who reads and posts on the site, a big thank you to all the new friends I made this year from AST and various publications and thank you to all the people who follow us on the other social networks. It’s been a fantastic 2011 from a site perspective, let’s hope 2012 can be the year we have a fantastic year on the pitch.
Merry Christmas, catch you all bright and early tomorrow morning!
P.S A Ligue one enthusiast posted the below piece on Gourcuff… thanks Pierre!
I am a Lyon/Arsenal supporter and I thought I’d give some feedback re; Gourcuff.
There is a lot of whining about Gourcuff but that’s who Arsenal are going to get. Wenger has wanted him since he was 17!
Don’t believe me? Read Wenger’s own blog on Eurosport only 3 or so months ago !
Wenger regularly drools over Gourcuff in the French press, he’s compared him to Platini and Zidane often.
You also forget that he’s a close friend of his father and the same footballing philosophy is shared among the three.
Gourcuff’s failure at Lyon is due to several reasons, firstly, Lyon do not play a short passing game conducive to Gourcuff’s ability, the side is too dependent upon individuals and the collective play is almost zero. Secondly, Lyon wanted to capitalise on Gourcuff financially through merchandise and marketing, even creating a brand called “YG29″ – hence when he joined Lyon he had a special presentation with 20,000 supporters – this put enormous pressure on him – the boy doesn’t have a bad attitude, he’s introverted, quiet, shy and also a mega nerd. Thirdly, under Claude Puel, Gourcuff was often used as a defensive midfielder because Lisandro Lopez wanted to play with Gomis. The same has happened under Remi Garde.
Gourcuff also has suffered enormous abuse from the French press much like Robert Pires at Marseille (hence Pires is a huge supporter of Gourcuff joining Arsenal). Wenger took Pires from Marseille and rekindled his career. The French press abuse him because he’s different and an interesting target – he’s highly educated, an intellectual of sorts, doesn’t believe in ‘bling bling’, night clubs, etc – he’s often voted the most ‘liked’ footballer in France because he sets a good example for youngsters! (regarded as the ‘perfect son’).
Wenger is going to get an absolute bargain here – you can forget about Goetze. No player in France received as much comparisons as Gourcuff to Zidane or even Platini – put under proper conditions at Arsenal, he will once again reach these heights.
Also don’t forget, Zidane had never achieved as much as Gourcuff at this age, Zidane won the world cup at 25! His career blossomed from there, prior to that he was nothing and Aime Jacquet was even lambasted for selecting him in the 98 French side! Gourcuff will achieve great things with Arsenal under Wenger!