Welcome to Thursday. The best day for drinking in the world of London office work.
So what have we today? Not much really. Arsenal officially binned of Squillaci, Andrey and Denilson yesterday. That’s freed up around £210,000 a week in deadwood salary. Right there my friends is near enough your one superstar striker. Throw in all the kids we let go. The intention to sell off Vermaelen, Gervinho and possibly a Lukas… well, you’ve got yourself a pot of money you’ve created on top of the additional pot of money we were already getting.
We just have to hope Arsene isn’t looking to spend the surplus cash on topping up Aaron Ramsey’s contract… or bringing in hopeful 18 year olds from all around Europe. To be honest, I don’t mind players like Sanogo and Mitrovic. They’ve both shown some flair for first teams, regardless of the quality.., there’s something there. Plus, they’re too young for first team contention.
What is concerning is that there aren’t 200 negotiators at Arsenal. So time spent on 18 year olds is time wasted on older talent. Still, I guess that’s what a blackberry with a keyboard is all about. Deals on the bus… on the beach… wherever.
Rooney sparked the most tenuous of ‘HE’S LEAVING’ stories. He spoke to Four Four Two and stated he’d like to play central striker on his own.
‘In the years to come, that might be somewhere I could play, but, right now, I’m definitely a centre forward. I’m after more goals.’ Rooney told FourFourTwo magazine.
‘I’ve played up front on my own a few times for Manchester United and it’s a role I’m very comfortable with and have no problems playing.
‘When you play as a target man, you have to stay up front and help the team out by holding the ball up and waiting for support. That all comes with experience.
For a man lacking in height, he certainly knows how to own that role. I think one of the appeals for Wenger will probably centre around his ability to play in near enough every position. He’s a street footballer first and foremost. I guess very simplistically, if you put Rooney in our team with the second half of the season defence… you’re a keeper away from at least contending. 10 more points.
Build out the squad with top quality from the third tier (Cazorla types: quality but cheap. Like Uniqlo jeans), and you could be looking at making up some serious ground on the top 2.
Someone who sounds like they’re straight off the sale rail in Primark is German Matthias Ginter. The 19 year old from Freiberg is apparently on our wanted list after playing a whopping 15 games for his less than super team this year. We’ve seen time and time again that bringing in teenagers to go into the first team doesn’t work unless they’re super quality. My guess is that if Bayern haven’t snapped him up, he’s not super super quality. Still, we haven’t bought him yet… so there’s not point in giving myself sweat patches until it’s confirmed… and we haven’t signed anyone else. I’m sure the everyone will tell me you can’t judge a player if you haven’t seen him. Well, our scouting network is shoddy at best these days… so if I haven’t seen him, I can tell you that 90% of other clubs networks will have. Anyway, I remember being told Park Chu Young was top talent, along with Bischoff and the countless other total punts we’ve had when trying to defeat the laws of value.
I do hope this summer isn’t about how smart Arsene can be with £20m. Like I’ve said before, I don’t mind us signing cheap players if they represent value over a punt. Arteta and Mertesacker were value. Cazorla was value. He may have cost £12m, but his salary was a big boy salary. We need to be finding players for the first team that are bargains, but experienced bargains. There’s plenty of them floating around Europe at the moment. No one has cash reserves like Arsenal. Why sign £5m Ginsters when you could have £10m Capoue? I mean, I know neither have been ruled out… but Arsene, regardless of how much cash he has, rarely seems to make the signing he should. I hope this is the first summer Arsenal actually compete for players rather than try and sign the only players in the world of international football no one else is competing for… because generally, if no one else is interested, there’s a reason (Gervinho – about the only player for Lille at that time no one wanted).
One striker that has been talked about a lot in the press of late is Benteke who has a £25m transfer tag. That’s a lot of money, but that’s the going rate for a goal scorer. I’d be all over that if he’d had two seasons of Premiership goal scoring prowess under his belt. I guess that’s why you have scouts. Is he technically sound, could he replicate last season? My guess is yes. But we’ve seen plenty who have had great seasons never to replicate again.
Anyway, I’m done for today. Have a good one and I’ll catch you in the comments later.