Morning friends, foes and mid morning browsers. I’m currently basking in the heat of a C2C train that lacks air conditioning functionality. I shan’t complain because when praying to the gods for heat, I didn’t specify how I’d like it to come.
Anyway, plenty of news to share with you today.
First on the hit list is the story from Gunnerblog on our potential signing of Gonalons of Lyon. The deal is being mooted at £13m and has all the hallmarks of a Wenger signing. Firstly, he’s coming in from France, secondly, he’s not the best that league has in that position and thirdly, he comes from an old boy recommendation. So he could be amazing, or he could be a Gervinho. Either way, his name doesn’t make you reach for the ‘THIS IS TO MAKE ME BUY MY SEASON TICKET’ bell.
What, you don’t have that bell on your desk?
Good to read that he’s heard the spine of the team is being addressed… bar I had a potential right back and a new keeper.
So, who caught the Bayern game? Wow. Utter destruction of Barcelona. Makes our victory over there all the more impressive. Bayern Munich combine technical brilliance with absolute power, something Barca struggled to cope with. Why they stopped their pressing game is a total mystery to me. I read a Ballague article that suggested it was to make Barca more unpredictable. Well, case closed, they were unpredictably bad last night and not for the first time outside their very uncompetitive league.
On their keeper Valdes, once again, can I just stress my total lack of faith in his ability to adapt to the Premier League. He’s very weak commanding his box. His shot stopping ability is undoubtedly more impressive than any of our keepers and he’d mark an improvement as he’s a proven winner. I just think there are keepers better suited to the league and I’m not sure he has the same age on his side to adapt like De Gea. Give me Begovic or Steklenberg. Don’t tell me we’ve opened up talks over a keeper because he’s the cheapest deal in Europe.
On the striking front, we’ve been dealt a foam hammer blow by the FA (annoying but not that painful), after they failed to rescind the red card for what was ultimately a pretty dim challenge from Giroud. He has to suck up an early holiday and watch the next three games from his laptop. This poses an issue because regardless of how you spin it, we don’t have another striker. Both our spares are on loan. A huge oversight that was pointed out at the time. We have a manager who thinks you can call your squad massive by proxy of the fact you have players who can rotate positions.
So what do we have lined up for United? Well, simply put, it’s Theo, Gervinho or Podolski. Not exactly filling me with clinical happiness. I’ve no idea who I’d opt for. Theo was totally schooled in Bayern Munich, but he scored a cracking goal against Chelsea. Podolski has big game player tendencies. Could he play that central role against United being as rusty as he’s been? I’m not sure that feels like a good idea.
People keep asking why Podolski doesn’t get started more often. It’s like we’ve all forgotten how little cover he’d give whoever was left back earlier in he year. I mean, I know we’re not tactically tight by any means, but jeez, he was a joke. Not just that, he’d shout at people when he made mistakes. I like him, but I can see why he’s sidelined.
Oh, for Gervinho? Ahh… I see the issue. As you were.
Finally, the guard of honour is happening at the weekend. It’d be totally respectful to clap United, but number one, I hate United, number two, I hate the situation the club is in by selling Robin to a rival and number three… do me a favour. There’s no love loss between us. I think we should all turn our backs on the guard. As a sign to the club that making sales to our major rivals in the full knowledge that the move is handing the title over is not acceptable.
Or is that totally classless like the Robin than I’m aiming to affect? This is hard. One classless act doesn’t make another classless act acceptable. Do we want to maintain integrity? Does that get us anywhere? Or should we stand by North London principles. This is a tough question.
Anyway, mull over it. It’s that or I’m taking that pigs head in. It’s been sitting on the radiator in a plastic bag for weeks. I’ll never salute Robin’s behaviour. I get his motives, but he showed zero class, that combined with him being our best captain since Paddy was disgraceful and the acidic taste of traitor is still swilling about in my mouth (could be a London Bridge kebab, still undecided).
Anyway, loads to debate. What do you think of Gonalons? What do you think of Valdes? What do you think of turning your back on the Man United guard of honour. It’d whip up a bit of atmosphere eh?