Vardy, Mkhitaryan and Ivan Gazidis

by & filed under Transfer Gossip, Transfers.

I could love this bastard

I could love this bastard

Morning all, Alex here. Let me tell you how this post is going to work. After a highly rhetorical introduction, the first half is mainly whinging, which seems strange given current news. But I promise if you make it through this part I will talk about transfers. So bear with me.
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These are strange days we are living in.

As things stand, Jamie Vardy – hot-headed Englishman, clinical, thuggish, brash and direct – is having his medical at the home of mellifluous, philosophical football.

According to many sources, Henrikh Mkhitaryan is next. He would be Arsenal’s third superstar signing of the summer window, and we are still eight full moons away from deadline day.

All very un-Arsenal but absolutely gorgeous.

Gazidis

I spent most of my Friday raging over Ivan Gazidis’s quotes in the Telegraph. A kaleidoscope of nonsense, Gazidis twisted himself into a Gordian knot explaining how Arsene Wenger was the right man to bring success to Arsenal while simultaneously wanting to understand why a club under the complete authority of its manager has not been successful to date.

He talked of progress. Yes we have won two FA cups which is fantastic, and we finished second last year. But peel back the banana skin and this claim looks very dubious.

Arsenal’s “progress” in PL over last 5 years:

• 11/12: 70 pts
• 12/13: 73 pts
• 13/14: 79 pts
• 14/15: 75 pts
• 15/16: 71 pts

Arsenal’s “progress” in CL over last 5 years:

• 11/12: Last 16
• 12/13: Last 16
• 13/14: Last 16
• 14/15: Last 16
• 15/16: Last 16

At the Q&A later on – the second part of his charm offensive – he praised Leicester City’s scouting, fitness, psychology, stability and continuity adding that there was a lot Arsenal could learn from them.

Didn’t Leicester sack their manager and take a gamble on a new one? There are many, many things we can learn from Leicester, but the idea that continuity brings success is not one of them.

His interview included lots of praise for Arsene Wenger.

“He has always put the long-term health of the club first. He wants to hand over a football club, whenever that it is, that is in great shape. He views that as a massively important part of his legacy. But we are just not in that mode. I know Arsène wouldn’t stay on if he thought the club wasn’t heading in a good direction and thought he wouldn’t be able to deliver what the fans want.”

With the greatest of respect Ivan, it’s not Arsene’s call to decide if the club is heading in the right direction or what his legacy will be, it’s yours.

Turkeys don’t vote for Christmas. At Arsenal, the chef is letting the Turkey vote for Christmas, prepare Boxing Day leftovers and plan the menus for Easter and Whitsuntide.

I used to be #GazidisIn but it sounds like he’s spent too much time with the inmates and I worry he is no longer the person to challenge the manager’s dominance. Until about 11.20am on Friday morning I had been planning my IMPEACH GAZIDIS campaign.

Vardy

Then the Vardy bomb dropped.

From left of field and completely unexpected. The whole business will be concluded before anyone has had a chance to process it. His signing is so un-Arsenal like, most fans don’t know what to make of it. My initial concern was that he does not suit our style of play, at all. He comes across as a pretty unpleasant character, he’s 29, had one hot season and is somewhat short on technique.

However, there is no doubting his tenacity, finishing, pace and utter bastardry. Maybe we need to stop having players we like and sign some killers; people you’d be scared to leave with your grandma. Let’s pack the team full of them. I want to hate my team, I want the world to hate them as long as we start winning again. Anything to win.

Mkhitaryan

The strong rumour is that copy editor’s nightmare, Mkhitaryan, is next. A technically proficient footballer, and Dortmund’s outstanding player last season he would be an excellent signing. While arriving to an area of the pitch where we are always overstocked with talent, this is the kind of aggressive transfer strategy many fans have been crying out for.

Defender?

I don’t know who else is next but I’d say we need a defender. I’d be quite happy to never see Gibbs in an Arsenal shirt again but losing Chambers seems unfair, especially as Gabriel has spent most of the season playing like he’s been huffing raw ether every time the ball goes out for a throw.

So there’s the positivity folks. One very good signing completed. And two very good ones potentially on their way. Arsenal and Arsene have listened. If these three signings go through, I’m prepared to give him and Ivan one more season.

Sure my frontal lobe is screaming at me not to fall for this trick again and that Arsene Wenger could still orchestrate an end of season collapse with the 1995 AC Milan squad, but on the other hand, signings, lovely signings.

Like peanut butter smeared over a court summons or a hidden bonus track by Prince at the end of a Kaiser Chiefs’ album, signings dull the senses and get rid of the awful pain of being an Arsenal fan.

Let’s see how the next few days pan out.

You can follow me on twitter @aldo_doel. Have a great Sunday


Wenger invites you all to the #VardyParty | Two more big names to follow

by & filed under News Review.

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WHERE WERE YOU WHEN WENGER DROPPED A CRAZY?

That’s what your kids will ask, because yesterday, something must have snapped in Wenger’s head because he dropped a £20m bid for none other than Leicester City superstar… Jame ‘Chat shit, get banged’ Vardy.

Take a moment there. Please. Let it soak in.

This isn’t a joke either. If we’re publicising this, it means details have been discussed and agreed with the player. Same thing happened with Suarez, except we got the release clause wrong. This time, Ranieri has admitted we’re on this one.

This signing has so many interesting ramifications.

The Manager

Wenger is all up in the short-terms face. No messing around. He’s in a hurry to win the league for once. I haven’t seen a signing this short-term since… well, Sir Alex dropped £24m for the ageing, yet supremely talented Robin Van Persie. The greatest and most short-term signing of his career.

Make no mistake, this signing is selfish. This is Arsene thinking about himself. This is him telling the fans… ‘I’ve had enough of myself’, you want the winner back, here he is. I love that. What’s the point in having cash if you don’t spend it!

Wenger is thinking about earning a new contract. He wants to stay on. He knows the club can only let him stay on if the fans are in love with him. 2 rounds of Wenger loving songs at the end of a season didn’t make up for the empty seats in the ground and disappointing the sponsors who aren’t dropping mega money with us like they are or were with United.

The Player

Would I like a better striker? Sure. Wouldn’t we all. Am I 100% sure Vardy is going to make us party? No, not at all. But look, he was a football terrorist this year. He has hustle, he has composure, he works and works and works. The quality of his goals was both varied and spectacular. He’s a machine and I love his attitude. If Ramsey is middle class, this guy is as working class as the come.

The Team

OMG, what the hell are we doing here? Addressing all our problems, early. THIS IS AMAZING.

We’re baking flexibility into our starting 11. Vardy brings the power and pace PLUS the clinical finishing. We have a very powerful midfield that can be pinned by Xhaka, Elneney and Coquelin. The if you have three behind the forward, you have incredible amounts of flexibility.

I understand that Arsenal are going hard for Mkhitaryan of Dortmund, he apparently wants us and we want him. He’s a spectacular player, and an incredibly hard worker, plus, he can play right across the front three and he scores and contributes with big numbers. Then you look at Iwobi, Ozil, Sanchez, Theo… well, it’s looking like a pretty devastating forward line with the protection and smarts we’ve lacked at the back.

We’ll also be signing a centre back as well.

The Outs

I think we’ll be losing Gibbs, Debuchy, Chambo and Joel Campbell. All kind of unneccessary, the two English boys lacking the right mentality to make it at Arsenal at this stage of their careers.

In Conclusion

Wenger finally doing what he’s supposed to be. He’s taking risks, he’s thinking about the now and he’s desperately trying to prove to the fans that he has what it takes to make us great again.

I’ll take on the Gazidis comments a little bit later on!


Wenger says his ego is calm | Left back change up on cards | The other Rodriguez please?

by & filed under News Review.

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Arsenal youth team coach Andries Jonker said everyone was surprised at the emergence of SUPER AWESOME TALENT Mr Iwobi.

“There are positive and negative surprises, but Alex is one of those boys who has continued to work hard, and kept his commitment and dedication no matter what has happened. In the end he made it and he has been a big surprise to everyone at Arsenal and we all love it. But he’s surprised us all.”

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