Exclusive: Arsenal medical team give Le Grove fantastic insight into their operation

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Nice car park

So Arsenal invited Le Grove and a number of other bloggers to attend a tour of the new medical facilities at London Colney. They added an extra layer of excitement by allowing us access to club doctor Gary O’Driscoll and Club Physio Colin Lewin. There was no tour group of 50. There were two of us (How strange, I actually recognised Jules from the Arsenal catalogue, catch her here). We were escorted around the training ground by Tom from PR, who, just for the record is a massive Arsenal fan as well.

I have no idea how to structure the article, so I’ll just churn out all the information I gathered and hope that I can communicate what an interesting couple of hours it was.

Firstly, the question everyone is dying to know. Do Arsenal have a corporate team? Yes they do. They play 11 aside football and yes, Ivan puts on a pair of Nike Mecurials and mixes it with the rest of them. I didn’t find out what position he played, but good to know he’s not too senior to muck in with the lads.

Table tennis + arm

We were firstly shown around the indoor pitch. I’m sure you’ve all seen it on Arsenal.com, it’s huge, it has to 3/4 pitches and it’s astro turfed. The 1st team players rarely play in it due to the adverse reaction the hard 3G turf can have on the muscles. It’s mainly for the kids. It’s an impressive structure and quite creepy when there’s only 4 of you… if I could get out of this room without a hit on my life, I felt I’d be ok for the day.

Colin got stuck straight into some of the things that irked him, top of his list was using injury analysis site, Physio Room. He thinks the league tables are a nonsense, 1) because they take return dates from newspapers 2) because they don’t take into account the size of squads. Wigan being judged on 20 players is skewed when Arsenal are racking up points for 45. It also doesn’t take into account that we play in Europe. If you’re playing 60+ games versus 40, you’ll obviously feature higher in the league table as you have more pressure on your squad.

Colin making his a point of his image rights (left), Gary tells us about his computer.

I pointed out early on that whenever we’ve spoken about injuries at Arsenal, we usually point out it’s not the medical staff who put the players there… he agreed by saying you don’t blame the paramedics for an accident on the M1, but equally, he said they have a part to play in it and that it’s a team effort to get players fit.

Steve Bould walked past and said good night.

I asked why our injury record was so much better last year in comparison to years gone past. This answer was quite interesting and definitely opened my eyes to the blurred grey lines when analysing injuries.

Colin said 2 years ago we had a shocking season when it came to injuries. He said averagely, you expect 1-2 fractures in a year. They had 7. When 7 players suffer fractures, you reduce the squad by 7 players, then you put more strain on less players, which results in fatigue, which equates to more soft tissue injuries.

So broken legs has a knock on effect for more than just the player suffering.

We took a wander into Gary O’Driscoll’s office. He’s a softly spoken Irishman, very intelligent and very passionate about what he’s doing at the club. He’s been there three years. Colin has been there since 1995, again, very sharp and very knowledgable about the whole rehab process from start to finish. Both were keen all day to stress they don’t know everything and the job is a constant learning process.

Arsene Wenger sits in the office opposite him Gary, so he has to keep his desk tidy. They have a computer system they operate called Edge10. It’s a little bit like the screen you’d operate in Championship Manager. It’s like a football ERP (Think SAP or SagePay). It has all the players medical records, their status, their nutritional info, medication, Prozone stats and their GPS data. A fascinating system any Arsenal fan would love to rummage around with for a few hours!

I asked how GPS had impacted on the club. They both became pretty animated. Gary said the club were just scratching the surface with what they could do with the system. It measures everything and it gives them a fantastic array of data sets to measure fatigue, body loading and distance run. Gary went on…

‘At the moment, using the system is an art form, we want to turn it into a science’

That was really interesting. They’ve been using the system for 2 years (not the season and a bit originally reported) and they have built up some fantastic data, but they have to dig around in it to work out which parameters mean what.

It’s a game of trial and error. You form a baseline for a player and you can work out when they max out. When it really comes in handy is when a player gets injured and the new data is built into the system. It helps you manage recuperation more efficiently.

They’re basically player profiling and it takes a while to maximise the benefits. It doesn’t take 18 months though. It takes about 2 months to build a workable player baseline, then the more data you add, the better you understand what’s going on. The club are bringing on two graduates to help take understanding to the next level.

I asked how football stacked up against rugby. The candid answer was that it’s still a few years behind. They’ve been using sports science for longer, mainly due to the nature of the game. It’s more about impact and their was more pressure to use it.

Gary said the system worked in different ways for the different sports, so the learnings he had from egg chasing haven’t been a massive help for football. Different parameters have to be defined. That’s not to say they haven’t been to see how it operates with the rugby clubs, last year Gary went over to meet with the then European Champions Leinster for a few meetings.

We were also shown some Champions League data that showed a study of all the Champions League clubs over the past year. Arsenal were mid-table when it came to injuries per 1000 hours trained and played.

I asked if much knowledge was shared between clubs and apparently there is without giving away too many secrets. Arsenal have good relations with the Spurs and Chelsea medical teams and they all speak to each other. It’s a bit of community. It wouldn’t really be in the spirit of medicine if they didn’t share info that helped support the well being of people.

He said that the facilities and the way the club do things in the medical area is well backed by the players. Yossi Benayoun rates what is going on at Arsenal and Per Mertesacker and Santos are said to be very trusting of staff even at this early stage.

Drugs cabinet under lock and key

The topic of drugs came up. The staff at Arsenal are very keen to ensure no one does a ‘Kolo’ (stealing his wifes diet pills and keeping it secret) and ingest something they shouldn’t. Testing is rigorous. I asked if they thought the sport was clean. They were both categoric. Yes it us.

  • There is 1 spot inspection by UEFA at training
  • They are tested at 3 games by UEFA
  • The FA do 4 random tests
  • The Premier League do 4
The club have a massive drugs cabinet. Any supplement the players take is sent off to the labs at Arsenal’s expense to make sure it fits the guidelines. All supplements are kept in a locked cabinet. Andre has two drawers worth!
He said that old clubs are very helpful when passing on details of new players. The Yossi medical didn’t happen until after, but Chelsea were very honest and up front about the player and his health. So far, it looks to have paid off, he’s only missed training for two weeks. Apparently during deadline day, the two medical men sat in with the Chief Exec and Wenger. We were in for 7-8 players after noon!

GPS and Prozone do their analysis in here... the room was locked.

The reason Ryo has been out is a double ankle knock…

The topic of Diaby and Gibbs was raised. There are high hopes that Gibbs will find fitness as he’s still developing skeletally. Diaby is just a bit of a

nightmare due to the horror injury he had all those years ago. He doesn’t suffer from recurring injuries though… which they were keen to stress.

I asked if being exposed to lots of games young had an affect on players as they got older. Colin said it was a tough question to answer as there were too many variables but he said it was dependent on the player.

He said Jack was merely unlucky and Gary said that the Cesc injury wasn’t down to scar tissue on his hamstring, it was a far more complex problem, he never actually had a grade 2 or 3 tear.. I asked what they thought about the Barca surgeon piping up. Gary said they were disappointed but firstly the surgeon wasn’t on the pay role as an official employee of Barca, secondly, they’re having the same issues. Colin said they all loved Cesc… which was nice.

I also didn’t shirk asking the question about over training. Colin said that over training can lead to fatigue injuries, but that is weighted against the back drop of it also giving us an advantage in the last 10. An advantage we’ve used to great effect. He said it’s a dilemma all teams face. Ultimately, it’s the managers call and ultra fit players is Wenger’s preference.

GPS can help inform decisions about fatigue though. The manager still makes the final decision call on who plays. Tech isn’t advanced enough to take on that role yet. I guess you also have to consider what the risk of dropping a fatigued Robin against United in an Champions League Semi Final would do. The grey blurred line… rest a player, lose a game. Play a player, win a game, pick up an injury. What do you do?

When Freddie Ljungberg said he never used the Arsenal gym… he lied. Chamberlain will probably end up being the strongest player on the team if early signs are anything to go by!

No gravity tread mill

Weight issues with players can go both ways. If they are over played they can lose it, if they aren’t watched, some can pack it on. If the boss says to a player you need to bulk, that is what has to happen. No questions.

The windows in the rehab gym open automatically to regulate temperature.

In the players dressing room, Theo is the DJ. Players are given exact nutritional instructions. They have tailored programs and are told what they can and cannot eat. Fit players are given recovery drinks after the game, injured players are given protein shakes so they don’t waste away. I tried a bit of Kieran Gibbs shake that he left… not bad stuff!

What you go in if you score an own goal

The players are also given weekly hydration tests. If they fail, they are given the special fluids to get them back on top. Again, another precautionary method to stop muscle fatigue. Last year, players weren’t good at completing this task, this year they’re far more on top of the game.

It sounds like Gary has done a good job building process into the players lives. The medical team do all they can so the players don’t need to think about preventative methods to improve their fitness…

Other stuff…
  • There are 3 full time massage chaps, players can opt in and put their name on the boards. The medical staff write who needs what and the staff get to work. Some prankster had written ‘ugly’ next to Frimpong’s name.
  • Tales of outsourced fitness coaches for Robin and Cesc are wide of the mark. All fitness is done in house. Cesc did bring his trainer over for a few weeks, but it was nothing sinister. Robin didn’t. He did however rub horse placenta into his ankle. Not that it worked… That said, the club don’t mind if players want to do their own things… as long as they’re informed of what they’re doing.
  • The club have put a new plunge pool in the training ground. You can cool it to 3 degrees. Some players spend 3-4minutes in there. Imagine the state of your chap after that?
  • The floor in the pool moves up and down depending on what excercises they’re doing in a warm down. The coaches can see into the pool to check they’re doing it properly…
  • I asked what injury Colin was most proud of rehabilitating, highlighting the Aaron one. He said he was happy with that, but it was pretty standard. They’re trained into the ground to deal with those. He said the Gibbs broken foot was a nasty one and he was happy with how that was turned around.
  • 60% of the Arsenal squad have their ankles strapped before training.
  • Jack is in almost everyday now. They’re keeping an eye on his injury. Hopefully he’ll be back and playing by February. The same goes for Sagna. Don’t expect miracles.
  • The clubs gym is pretty cool. They have some pretty crazy machines that use air compression as the weights.
  • Typical training sessions last 1 hour.
  • Colin thinks we should have a winter break, we lose out to foreign clubs in the Champions League because of it. We also suffer as a nation come the international championships.
  • He said it was really difficult working when the results were so poor. The whole club was affected. The positivity is back though and the players and management are buzzing. He said the players are a great bunch of lads.
  • He grew up a West Ham fan, but after being with us so long, he’d cheer an Arsenal goal against his home team.
  • Looking forward he wants to improve how they use GPS, work on better preventative actions, he reckons genetics will play are part in player assessment in the future (but we’re no where near now, despite what you’ve read in the press) and most important to him is making sure he’s always on top of the staffing levels.
  • Arsenal are throwing a conference where they’ll bring in the best speakers in world in sport. Doctors, scientists and people in the medical hardware industry will come and talk to people from different sports hosted by Arsenal.
  • Gazidis has been a very supportive CEO when it comes to investing in technology and people.
  • The number of injuries so far this year are up, but the severity is down. Treatment is easy, preventing injuries is the hard bit!
  • He is happy to take the blame for recurring injuries. He’ll accept part of the blame for Vermaelen and is happy to be shot down when his team deserve is, but he wants people to understand that they can’t be blamed for everything.
  • Arsenal have flight best practice for the players. They supply them with compression socks and advise them on how to sleep and how to hydrate effectively.
  • Fans have to accept African and South American players who get back on Friday will not play on a Saturday.
  • Medical staff have fought to move internationals to Fridays and Tuesdays to increase recovery time so players can play for their clubs.
  • They don’t get to see the youngsters play… but they all knew Jack was going to be a superstar!
Conclusion…

It was an excellent 90 minutes. I hope the write up has done the day justice and I hope you feel more informed about the effort that goes into the fitness of the players. Gary and Colin were a credit to the club. I think what shone through is how much they give a crap. They both seemed genuinely aggrieved that they were being given a rough ride in the media and by the fans when they have been doing everything they can to make things better.

The backroom sounds like it’s moving to another level, even compared to last year. We’re now keeping injury prone players fitter for longer. Arteta has done well so far and we haven’t seen a breakdown of Yossi or Robin. I’m sure the injuries will happen, they always do, but at least we’re now seeing the benefits of greater technology integration and a more process driven injury prevention program.

All in all, a great day. Well played to Arsenal for letting me have access to two staff members, I applaud the transparency. Also, a big thanks to the AST for suggesting this to the board. Again, another reason to sign up to a very worthwhile supporters trust.

[twitter-follow screen_name=’LeGrove’ show_count=’yes’]

Right… I’m out all day. See you in the comments later!

257 Responses to “Exclusive: Arsenal medical team give Le Grove fantastic insight into their operation”

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  1. DeiseGooner

    Goon in 60 Seconds – ou never hear of the people who got fucked by injury and tossed aside – we are waiting on Diaby here right??? 🙂

  2. Tinyspuds

    @ivory

    Actually I was trying to make it easier for you, just as my previous post was trying to be helpful to you. People aren’t always out to get you.

  3. Archimedes

    Arsenal has worse injury record than other top 5-6 teams (similar number of matches per season, many on Int’l duty too). Great facilities but still run by druids. Clone Milan Lab and sell the chronic crocs like Diaby and Gibbs please.

  4. Goon in 60 Seconds

    ivory don’t take a holiday, le grove needs you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  5. Ade king

    Was an absolutely super read!
    Excellent to have such valuable
    Insight into the world of the arsenal
    FC medical team! Thanks for sharing

  6. Ade king

    Was an absolutely super read!
    Excellent to have such valuable
    Insight into the world of the arsenal
    FC medical team! Thanks for sharing

  7. Goon from BD

    Is there any possibility that the money we may have gotten from transfers/revenues/property etc is being used in the facilities and stuff?(I don’t know about this shit much)

    About Netherlands(RvP) friendlies……..they play Germany and they are fucking arch enemy like and two of the favourites for the Euros along with Spain. Huntelaar and Robben are injured so RvP is most likely to start. We can still pray though 😀

  8. Goonerpower

    Everyone keeps saying this, top top post. Extremely informative. Sounds like the guys are doing a fantastic job over there.

    Keep up the great blogging, no doubt its the best blog about!!

  9. IvoryGoonz

    Tiny: was kidding, don’t worry, it’s all good banter…

    60: yep, as you reminded, and as someone famous said, life’s a beatch, you know it when you’re through ^^ after that I wanted to become a jet fighter pilot, i was fitting all tests till 18, and when it came to join fully, ended up rejected because of astigmatism that poped up and fucked my perfect vision… but without that, oil and gas wouldn’t have profited of my other skills and with a bit of luck and perseverance, I’ll be able to thank myself for reducing the pressure on Poland and Ukraine by Russia on their gas feed….
    yeah, I’d have preferred to win a couple CL for the mighty Arsenal, but well… I learned quick that “you can always have what you want”…

  10. Goon from BD

    I hope they don’t play him at all. It could be a very serious game. They should realize if they lose RvP before another major tournament their chances would be absolutely damaged again like the WC. Robben looks to having set backs after set backs and Sneijder is injury prone too.

  11. Al

    You guys seen this, Comparing Invincibles vs current City Team

    http://www.talksport.co.uk/magazine/features/2011-11-08/proof-manchester-citys-team-better-arsenals-unbeaten-invincibles

    Sergio Aguero better then DB10 is one of the funniest things i have seen in a long time. Also instead of comparing Gilberto Vs Barry and Viera vs Yaya they dont as it evens out the score to 1-1 otherwise it would be 2-0. Also have hart as better then lehman and boateng better than kolo

  12. Goon in 60 Seconds

    Kapslock

    They are CUNTS!!! yet some still deny there is an unfair and disproportionate amount of criticism of us in the media. Talksport are just a symptom of the problem, but they don’t even try to hide there contempt for the gunners! Especially Durham the dick, jeez that guy is a CUNT to arsenal and it is harsh because it is actually a good radio station that I am forced not to listen to because I can’t afford to keep buying radios after i’ve thrown them against the wall 😉

  13. Goon in 60 Seconds

    Ivory,

    I try and believe that everything happens for a reason, or at least as you have done, create the possibility of beauty out of shit things that happen to us in life. Fair play for not letting that shit get you down and doing something good with your life, inspirational stuff, and best of all you are not at all cynical from it.. oh , wait…… 😉

  14. Rohan

    lol Aguero is better than Bergkamp?
    haha, who came up with that?

    Great post, Pedro. Very enlightening and good to see that we’re opening the doors as well.

  15. SUGA3

    evening y’all…

    great, great writeup Pedro, thank you!

    the whole media bias thing can only be relevant if you actually read and listen to all this gash, I don’t go anywhere near Talkshite, unless I am driving and listening to a game, that’s gotta help me live a bit longer, eh?

  16. Manama

    Best article i’ve read frm u.hv 2 4giv ur pre n early season treasonable acts against our belovd arsenal.showd le grove can b ignorant n shortsighted.appreciatin u more nw.

  17. Al

    Dont listen to talkshit, but sometimes i catch their news as it pops up on newsnow and i cant resist the temptation to rea what shit they are writing.

    Not listened to that station for 2 years though

  18. IvoryGoonz

    How Arsenal Football Club Reached Out To Bloggers | SpreeCity Blog says:
    November 8, 2011 at 17:32

    […] of them, Le Grove, then went on to write about an excellent 90 minutes tour of the facilities by the club doctor […]
    ——–
    It’s 60 who must be happy …

  19. IvoryGoonz

    “Colin got stuck straight into some of the things that irked him, top of his list was using injury analysis site, Physio Room. He thinks the league tables are a nonsense, 1) because they take return dates from newspapers 2) because they don’t take into account the size of squads. Wigan being judged on 20 players is skewed when Arsenal are racking up points for 45. It also doesn’t take into account that we play in Europe. If you’re playing 60+ games versus 40, you’ll obviously feature higher in the league table as you have more pressure on your squad.”
    The reason people use Physio Room, as I said earlier, is that it was the only free available central source with all teams, it’s not perfect, but at least that’s a start when you start a list of injured players. These days, it’s your duty as a reader to check twice if you actually want to use that in your debates… btw if Pedro/Geoff could contact their admin (unless PR@Arsenal.com already did) and point them to Colin’s comments, they might even profit of that to make Physio Room more accurate, and give them a right to answer…
    Other things on his points:
    1) I believe they take dates from newspaper when the actual date is not communicated officially by the clubs, so it’s not a real time tool, even if I can understand the reason of the clubs for doing that, those are wrong reasons. You cant decide to remain silent or lie for the sake of oneself. That’s just propagating that culture of misinformation, and it’s time people change behaviors. You cant prone wanting to be transparent and an example of finance, for the class of it, and at the same time not say the truth to your fans.
    2) that’s a very good point, if your site was about giving comparisons, but their classification is just pure stats, and some of the stats (return dates for some players) are wrong not because of them. They are just posting the most accurate information they have, and if they had access to real return dates, they would publish them. After all, the quantity of injuries, whatever the size of the squad, Colin would realise that even if you only considered teams in CL and EPL to compare with Arsenal, the total amount of injuries would still be higher for Arsenal, as they are constantly in the top of that league. But I encourage the discussion about that, if Colin has an exact formula to propose to count points, please do, as the Physio Room doesn’t propose a coef to judge them, I’d like this to be clear. They are just counting. But what I’d like really to say to people is this: take Physio Room as it is. Just an indication.
    “I asked why our injury record was so much better last year in comparison to years gone past. This answer was quite interesting and definitely opened my eyes to the blurred grey lines when analysing injuries. Colin said 2 years ago we had a shocking season when it came to injuries. He said averagely, you expect 1-2 fractures in a year. They had 7. When 7 players suffer fractures, you reduce the squad by 7 players, then you put more strain on less players, which results in fatigue, which equates to more soft tissue injuries. So broken legs has a knock on effect for more than just the player suffering.”
    Yes, the more, the merrier as well. My question to Colin is: in that case, what caused those fractures, could it be that we played too many games going after all Cups+CL+EPL without rotating the totality of the squad? After all counting all the players is unfair if you only use a certain percentage… And Wigan will more likely use a bigger percentage of first teamers than we would right? And does that not mean that we should have a squad sized according to this as well?
    When looking at the squads, first team, reserve, youth, the one thing I noticed is that there’s under-manning everywhere, and we still send 10 players on loan.
    ‘At the moment, using the system is an art form, we want to turn it into a science’
    -> Call me

    the rest from there is quite fascinating and purely informative, thanks again Pedro/Geoff/Le Grove, and all the buggers at AFC

  20. Goon in 60 Seconds

    gimme Mario goetze over eddy nazzar any day, he sounds like a bit of a dick any way. Goetze in to replace sicknote! I do love rosicky but hey, imagine being able to use jack rambo and mario as midfield options!!! if not that then we could get M’villa, him and song together would be nails!!!! Arteta may have to become a CC player and occasional prem player/ sub for jack and aaron, which is a shame because i really like him taking responsibility and covering for song, but we are bound to pick up a few knocks so options are good.

  21. SUGA3

    Arteta a CC player? now, now…

    I don’t think he was bought as a cover for injures player(s), that’s why we have got Yossi, right?

    Hazard and Goetze are completely different players too…

  22. frenchie

    arteta was not purchased to be relegated to cc squad.

    i have heard/read that song plans to run down his contract. where have these rumors come from? who is the itk on this one?

  23. frenchie

    sug-

    i like hazard,would love to see him in red and white, but wonder if the money could be better spent at arsenal than on him. one quality player rather than 2-3 quality players seems imprudent.

  24. IvoryGoonz

    frenchie: seem to remember reading something about that, but didnt take too much interest in it, sounded more like rumours than actual facts, but well, who knows these days? ask Arsene.

  25. stevegooner

    just read the talksport shit about how Man “buy a league city” are better than the invincibles. Wait till the end of the season. If they manage to do it, have the debate then. There’s still 27 to go before the debate even starts.
    Cunts

  26. frenchie

    ig-

    yeah, they seem spurious at best. but then again he would not be the first player made by arsenal to force an exit, and will not be the last…

  27. SUGA3

    frenchie,

    yep, I gues you are right, not sure if he’s worth breaking the bank for, guess we have missed a trick by not getting him a couple of seasons earlier through the usual ‘chance for a yoof player’ channels…

  28. Goon in 60 Seconds

    Suga, I know Hazard and goetze are very different, i meant we have enough options out wide/inside forwards, and I would way prefer to see Goetze bought, because having the option of him jack or rambo would be incredible,and I think i am right in saying that he can play on the wing so imagine having jack and the goat then having the option of brining on rabo and moving mario out wide. Maybe realistically Mvilla would probably be a better option as a defensive partner for song for tough games ( like arteta doing)

    So tell me (and roaaary too), if we did buy another CM defensive or otherwise, who would you have lose their place in the starting 11?/ surly it can only be Arteta. So he ultimately would have to take a carling cup role with as I said occasion prem games when injuries occur or rest is needed? Believe me I really like Arteta, but I can’t see any thing other than him taking on the rosicky role and rosicky sold.

  29. frenchie

    goon-

    arsene has truly brainwashed you into thinking that improvement is a bad concept, antithetical to the mores of arsenal. what a shame.

  30. IvoryGoonz

    Suga: and again, he played more AML in the past than AMC. Would have Gotze AND Hazard to be honest, and eventually even try Wilshere in a more defensive role.

  31. SUGA3

    willy,

    I think the word you are looking for regarding Rosicky is ‘released’, as he is out of contract in the summer?

    with Coq au vin and Frimps in the ranks, don’t hold your breath as far as buying a DM is concerned, so I think MA will still get a lot of games…

    now, I wonder what sort of team will I get to see against Citeh, hopefully OGL will select a stronger team than last time we met this lot in CC in their backyard, I personally don’t think that a stuffing will do any of the youngsters any good, maybe that’s just me?

  32. IvoryGoonz

    other thing is that I’d like to see Santos on that left wing, now that we have him, it’s to play him where he could bring something more…

  33. Goon in 60 Seconds

    Frenchie,

    don’t know how me discussing the possibility of being in a great talent into the club is excepting that improvement is a bad thing. Unless you were referring to an earlier post, in which case you would be better stating it first.

    Ivory
    In that case, and you are clearly right, Mvilla is a definite no no. Still I can’t see us buying goetze and then still playing song and arteta together as a regular thing, maybe in tough games, but not often. Arteta would be the first to lose his place in the team.

  34. Goon in 60 Seconds

    suga,

    but if we buy goezte, surly arteta would lose his place in the side too, I cant see us having two of the trio of jack rambo and mario being on the bench that often, can you? What could his role be the starting 11?

  35. IvoryGoonz

    60: which is why I dont see us buying any DM in the future, as Arteta was on Arsene’s cards long time ago already, and Yossi can play there too in case…
    The right thing to do imho would be to send Coq and Frimpong on loan in EPL, and bring in a better option than Song, and a CB who can play DM.

  36. SUGA3

    willy,

    there is more than enough games to go around, we have to use the full squad, otherwise we will fall into the same old trap of fatigue induced injuries and shit morale of the fringe players…

    and we can discuss accommodating Goetze when he is presented wearing R&W and utters ‘Ich bin ein Kanonier’ or summat, ja?

  37. hitman49

    god pedro sounds like a love struck puppy…

    whats happened to our legrove ?

    did you lick the medical staffs shoes clean as well ?

    you bought the bull shit left right and centre

  38. Tinyspuds

    @Ivory

    However players who are happy at their existing club will cost more printed faces both in transfer fees and wages, which makes him sound like less of an Arsenal signing. (we like em cheap and cheap)

  39. IvoryGoonz

    Tiny: in any case, yes, “We” is not likely to pay that much for one player, so young, that would f* up his curve.

  40. gambon

    Unfortunately Tiny is right

    As Wenger always says, he doesnt look at passports when signing a player, he also doesnt look at quality.

    He looks at price, and if they are French African.

  41. SUGA3

    I am the ‘praise and criticism where it’s due’ kind of person, so both the medical centre and the idea of involving influential bloggers in the PR works of the club get the thumbs up from me…

  42. Tinyspuds

    @gambon

    One of the other advantages of buying players who want to play for you is they tend to work harder.

    Arteta not only took a pay cut, but he’s pretty determined to put in a good shift

    Jenkinson might well be lacking in a lot of experience, but he’s working bloody hard to improve

    Mertesacker might be slow for the Prem, but he’s doing his best to sort that out.

  43. Goon in 60 Seconds

    But suga, ive been talking about the starting 11, im saying surly arteta will lose that 50% of the time when jack is back, if we buy another quality mid, for big money that 50% will dwindle further, even maybe to… . a carling cup player! a 😉

  44. SUGA3

    of course Arteta is not likely to be the first choice ahead of Jack, but what I am getting at is that he will not be demoted to a CC player, simply because there is more than one formation to be played (well, at least there should be) and enough games to go around…

    plus, is Goetze REALLY all that?

  45. Goon in 60 Seconds

    I’ve seen goetze a few times but not many, remember against us he was amazing, mobile strong, great quick passer, a real Arsenal player. Guess we’ll all have our eye on him come the dortmund game and we will see better

  46. Rohan

    If jack were to come back tomorrow, I’d drop Ramsey and play jack a bit further forward with arteta behind him.

    His importance to the team has been overlooked in recent weeks IMO. Proper warrior

  47. Goon in 60 Seconds

    , Rohan,that’s means that we basically won’t or shouldn’t be signing any one in jan? i think ramsey needs to be playing regularly, but not every game, in order to progress, jack the same, so if arteta if so important to the team, which I completely agree he is, who should we sign, if anyone this jan.?

  48. Rohan

    I didn’t say that. We need one more body in midfield for when song or arteta gets injured imo. Ramseys great but really shouldn’t be playing week in week out. We saw what happened to jack last season.

    I’d also buy a striker and sell chamakh.

  49. naija soccer

    Talksport or more accurately talkSHIT is at it again I see. Comparing Mancity to the invincibles team after 11 games played. I seem to remember most pundits saying Manyoo of last season will go undefeated too. Well we all know how that turn out.

    The highlights of the comparison is when the twat claimed Aguero is better that Bergkamp, Richards better than Lauren. He even got the head to head comparison all wrong comparing gilberto to yaya, vieira to barry when it should be yaya to vieira and gilberto to barry. And so on and so on.

    Let’s not even put in perspective that this Mancity team cost something like a billion dollars to assemble.

  50. Goon in 60 Seconds

    they are getting slated on there website, they deserve it the CUNTS! Jesus that is low even for talk sport

  51. SUGA3

    willy,

    fortunately, we live in a country where some basic freedoms are observed, these two are freedom of speech (that includes that cuntbucket Durham) and freedom of choice, the latter should demonstrate itself in visiting their website or not and being able to change the channel, no?

    I say fuck’em, no need to add to the publicity they are getting, is there?

  52. Tinyspuds

    The talksport piece (and others) is purely designed to attract attention and get hits on their website so they can sell their advertising space.

    The actual piece is competely full of holes. IE comparing Vieira with Barry and Gilberto with Yaya Toure rather than vica versa.

    Every time you log on to their site you’re justifying their tactics.

    And besides we all know the Invincibles are better than ManC because they played in red and white and not some light shade of blue