So, word has hit the new lines that Arsenal have softened on the Theo Walcott contract front. We’re willing to go as high as £85k a week. That’s big money. Maybe not what he’s after, psychologically when I was renegotiating my deal with Le Grove, £100k a week just felt right. In the end I gave in… Theo,£85k still buys you lots of love on the West London club scene and there’s no doubt you’ll be able to afford the finest rims money can buy… and a big TV, like, I’m talking easily 32 inches.
Anyway, it’s not about the money with Theo. But it is. Maybe not as much as people are making out. I never get the whole upset people fluster themselves into around cash. Think about how you’d be if John in accounts had a 38 inch TV… and you knew the only reason he was high rolling with the fine ass ladies from HR was because he was earning double your salary, even though your skills on the Sage far exceeded his. Are you going to sit back and say, ‘ well jeez, I just love it here, and my line manager is just like my father’.
Of course you’re not.
You want the best deal for you. I also think people forget the player doesn’t perform the negotiations. It’s normally some half witted cretin who has no moral fiber smashing out the deal. It’s not Theo sitting there in a suit and birthday tie trying to hammer through the minor details of image rights.
If Theo wants £100k a week, pay it to him if we think this form is here to stay. If not, sell him. It’s as simple as that.
Another player who is being rewarded with a new deal is Kieran Gibbs. Am I going mental here? Did he not recently pick up a £40k a week deal? Apparently not. He’s in for a proposed 5 year deal. Now, I know everyone thinks Kieran has turned a corner and he’s now the greatest left back we’ve had since Cashley, but in my opinion, we’re bolting early on this deal… especially as it’s for 5 years.
In fact, 5 years? Is there really any point? Who is that benefiting? Just the player from where I’m sitting.
Why would I say that? Well, Gibbs still hasn’t proved his fitness. He’s still just as likely to pull out of a season as Abou diaby. He’s yet to manage more than 20 games a season. I know you could say that he’s only just breaking through, but Nik B never broke into the first team and he regularly contributed a large tally of starts. Not to mention managing 38 games on loan at Birmingham. I think we’re storing up another big problem at left back by tying him down like we did with Diaby. I think we need to go out and sign some proper back up. No… we need to sign proper competition for that position, because I can guarantee you this… we’ll be having left back issues for years to come if we don’t.
Speaking of contracts. This next thought has been crowd sourced from the Le Grove comments. It stemmed from a debate around bringing David Dein back to the club. Some call this a progressive move. Me? I don’t. Bringing a man, regardless of how great he was, back into the fold as the CEO at nearly 70 is not a progressive move. It’s a backwards step. Now, he might come back and do wonders, but he’s not what we need right now. Dein is great friends with Arsene. Arsene is on a downward spiral. What could Dein possibly do to help a manager with dated views and methods on the game? Is he the guy to come in a pressure Arsene? Doubtful…
The whole idea of reuniting a team of yesteryear and hoping they’ll sort things out makes little sense. Simon & Garfunkel are not going to recreate tunes like they used to, Bill Hewlett and David Packard aren’t going to reinvent the printer and I’m sorry people, it’s over for Torvill and Dean. Progressive change is bringing in football people. Guys that are the Arsene & Dein of today. Now, this is going to sound like a nasty curve ball… but if you had David Dein as Chairman, could you not have his son as our chief legal guy?
Darren Dein has been a blight on the last ten years of Arsenal. He’s shifted on countless players to pastures new. He’s incredibly connected, he knows how to strike a deal and he’s clearly a mover and shaker like his old man. Having someone in that role who knows the value of a player feels like something we’re really struggling with at the moment. Having someone who has relationships with the players also feels like something that’s missing. It seems all too easy for players to jump ship at the moment. Could this be a move that Arsenal would consider?
They’re on good terms with him… he sat with Arsenal at the FWA.
Big businesses do it… headhunting is common place. If it’s a company of talent, a massive business might buy a company just to absorb best minds into their own operation. Now, I’m not suggesting we buy Darren Dein. I’m just saying his ruthlessness is something we’re lacking. I’ve been told he has a beef with Arsenal over the way they treated his Dad. I was with someone a few weeks ago whose father used to be on the board at a Northern Premiership club. The said club treated his old man badly… which he told me put him off the club. I’m assuming there must have been some love there before, so it’s not inconceivable bringing him back in could help him do for Arsenal what he’s done for his clients.
Anyway, one for you to chew over.
I’m off to New York this evening, not sure how I’m going to post. I’m assuming they have the interweb over there? I’ll find out shortly. I should be in the Blind Pig to watch the Montpellier game tomorrow.
See you in the comments!