It’s over for Özil

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via @arsenal

So, what shall we talk about today? Oh… squad lists.

Mesut Özil has been bombed from our Premier League squad list until February at the very least, but the chances are, that’s him finished forever at Arsenal FC.

It’s always a shame to watch someone push the self-destruct button on their career, and let’s be clear, that’s exactly what Mesut Özil has done to himself.

Most of his downfall is related to one thing… a lack of application. This is not an ability problem, he’s one of the most capable footballers to have lived. No, the issue is he simply doesn’t want to apply himself in 2020.


Thomas does not like to Partey

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Sportklub Rapid Wien… formerly known as Rapid Vienna? Or known as both? What? The true Englishman coming out there. I’m sorry. But don’t make it confusing. One or the other, please.

That’s all I really have on that subject.


Weekend finishes on a LOL

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Well, I felt pretty terrible about life waking up yesterday morning, but then the mighty Spurs brightened up my day when they gave up a 3-0 lead inside 18 minutes after the second coming of Gareth Bale.

Beautiful stuff. That killed off ‘THEY’RE GONNA WIN THE LEAGUE’ talk pretty fast. Spurs will be up there this season, but contending the title? Have my doubts people.

Even better than that, Emi Martinez kept another clean sheet and Ross Barkley fired the impressive Aston Villa to another win against Leicester.


Arsenal creativity found wanting again

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Arsenal took a defeat away at the Etihad in the first game back after the international break. There are no two ways about it, the result was disappointing, but probably not the disaster performance many are trying to paint.

Our truth right now is very similar to what it was last season under Mikel Arteta. We are well organized, we are resolute, and we’re tough to beat. We are… good at defending. Arteta wants to build a side based on strong foundations. He’s not far off cracking that code. Before yesterday, under Arteta, we were top 4 for total points since he took over. This is our best start in the league for 7 years.

… we are, however, a little bit shit going forward.


… and we’re back

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Here we are, back together, ready to indulge in some peak-Barclays viewing today.

So what can we expect away at Manchester City?

A tough game. Sorry to be very obvious here, but Manchester City are hurting at the moment and they really need to impose themselves back on the league.


Partey time?

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This is going to be a power-post because the week I’m having looks like Denilson in midfield against Stoke.

Mikel Arteta wants Arsene back at the club.

I would like to see him back around us. He was a massive figure for me and he’s someone that I can still learn a lot of things from and I would like to have him closer to us.

Obviously the actual environment doesn’t allow us to do it, but I think he’s a figure that has to be very present in what we do at the football club because he is, in my opinion, the one who had the vision and helped this club to evolve and be what it is today.


Thomas Partey: Solid airport attire + SPACs to debut in sport?

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Is that… you… light…?

Yes, it is.

Finally, the bore-fest of international football is coming to a close and we have REAL football coming back to our screens.

What better way to introduce a better reality than a Thomas Partey special?

I like the travel look. Clearly, this isn’t a man who cares about comfort on a flight and I admire that. A major scourge of modern fashion is the Ryanair-Leisure crew who find the thought of sitting on a seat for two hours so horrifying, they degrade themselves to wearing items like crocs, tennis socks, matching partner tracksuits, and slovenly accessories like neck pillows. I can’t have it, it’s the visual equivalent of a small child kicking your chair.

I’m glad that’s not Thomas Partey. A nice black jean jacket, a polo, and smart trousers. That’s a sophisticated man right there. I also like that he’s a proper watch guy. You always worry about someone when they rock a smartwatch, especially if the band is customised. The 2020 version of a phone holster.

Our new midfield dynamo is going to wear the #22 shirt. He’s picking-up from legends like Gael Clichy, Yaya Sanogo, and Franny Coquelin. Big boots the fill (or iceskates lololololol)

CORRECTION: #18. If I had a smartwatch, this would NOT have happened.

It’ll be very interesting to see what Mikel Arteta does with the line-up this weekend. There’s no team you’d rather your debut signing lands for than a heavy pressing Manchester City. There’s also no worse game because if he plays badly, we’ll all cry and have to sacrifice to the truth-telling radar merchants. Jokes aside, the player is Simeone levels of fitness, so that’s not a worry. The question is whether Arteta wants to throw a new player into a fairly settled system so soon after joining? Two training sessions is not a lot. Still, the player speaks very good English, he’s elite, and there’s no point in buying players if you don’t play them.

Kante has reportedly fallen foul of Frank Lampard and might be exiting the business this January. How do you fall out with Kante? Seems like the nicest guy in the game. Well, we can guess… touchline Billy Mitchell from Eastenders can’t help himself. Wonder if Kante wants to stay in London? Imagine…

I’m not sure if I wrote about Project Let’s Takeover Football this week? Arsenal is part of the big 6 set of clubs that are using the EFLs bailout to take over the game (have the proposal, yet to decide). It’s a grim project where the gist seems to be that the big clubs in the league want to control decisions and the flow of money.

The Premier League is popular, in part, because the prize money is equally shared. Unlike Serie A and La Liga, who distributed according to club size back in the day. Pound for pound, our clubs are richer, which means they can afford much better players than the rest of Europe, up and down the league. The idea that the Billionaires Club wants to end that to entrench their power is not a shock. It’s disappointing though and I’m glad the Government has stepped in.

It was interesting to read that the Liverpool owners are looking to create a SPAC for sporting entities. SPACs are the new hot thing on Wall Street, it’s a blank check company that goes to market with the intention of merging with other companies. I got burned badly when I invested money in Nikola, the CEO floated an electric truck company with no trucks, then he was called out as being a bald fraud by an analyst, and it all went to shit. Fuck him and my shares that are on the floor.

Anyway, Fenway Group wants to create a RedBall SPAC and float it. They’ll buy up sporting tech firms and clubs and build out a mega-portfolio.

As a public company, Fenway could look to buy up more clubs in Europe, where a number have been on the block, according to a person familiar with the matter.

A publicly traded sports organization would be a relatively untested concept in the U.S. Liberty Media Corp. owns the Atlanta Braves, but the baseball team is a subsidiary of a much larger company. The NFL’s Green Bay Packers is owned by shareholders who mostly consist of fans.

RedBall’s board includes former Premier League Executive Chairman Richard Scudamore, during whose 20 years in charge English soccer turned into a global export and a television-rights cash cow. Premier League matches air in more than 190 countries every weekend of its 10-month season.

What helps the value of something like that rise? Entrenched power and more TV money. Sport is such a great game to get into. It’s largely recession-proof, the fanbase is inelastic, and the growth opportunity keeps getting bigger as the pipes get wider and distribution becomes easier. Scudamore, an incredibly influential string-puller is on the board. Billy Beane is involved. Let’s see how all that influence pans out as smart people look to channel the sea of money in football into their pockets.

Ok, that is all I have time today. Do NOT be sad. I’ll be back tomorrow with some more fresh content.