The situation in the market at the moment is about as clear as an Adebayor press conference. Posturing, denials and a real lack of movement. It’s hard work out there, so little talent, so little willingness to compromise… but it’s starting to get to the action end of the summer now.
Things you need to avoid from a summer…
1. Keeping players who want out. Even if you’re Madrid.
2. Waiting till the last minute to recruit
Now, Liverpool have come out and flagged that Cavani moved for £55m and that’s a fee they’d look for with Suarez. For me, there’s quite a difference between the two. Firstly, Cavani was plying his trade for a team that plays in the Champions League. Secondly, the player wasn’t agitating for a move. Thirdly, he didn’t leave Napoli with a 6 game ban and some seriously heavy weight baggage.
For me, £35-40m represents fantastic value to Liverpool. They can bleat on all they like about their project… but it’s not going to rub with a 26year old who has been out of the champions league lime light for far too long. I’m guessing he’ll be pushing for a move when he gets back to training… then we’ll see Liverpool’s hand weakened. Then we’re rolling.
David Moyes indicated the Cesc story isn’t dead yesterday, just as I called. If Barca get the right offer, I think they’ll sell. Then if Cesc feels aggrieved enough, he’ll be able to push for Arsenal. Hopefully at least. I’m not sure Arsene could tolerate he’s favourite player of all time under a David Moyes development program. He’s alluded to as much in recent weeks. We have the buy back clause and we have the money to match United.
… keep an eye on that story, it still has plenty to run.
Jose Mourinho came out yesterday and denied rumours he was interested in clearing out Luiz and Mata. No mention of Hazard. I’m not sure any manager worth his salt would flog on the Belgian star before they’d seen what season two could bring his way. No mention of Higuain, though the papers did catch up on what I told you the other day… Madrid upped the asking price to €40m for their lead striker. Whether we’re loaded or not… that’s a horrendous price tag for a striker who really isn’t in that sort mega star bracket.
Jovetic moved to Manchester City yesterday. A very good player, but one I maintain we’ve never lodged a formal interest in. That was paper talk fueled by agent desperation. I’m not sure he’s what we were looking for. He’s a punt to a certain degree. On that we couldn’t afford to take. I’m sure he’ll be great, but was he going to pull in 30 goals next year? It would have been a stretch target…
There are rumours that the Managing Director of Flamengo lost an online game of Poker against Ivan Gazidis and has had to suffer the indignation of signing Santos on a years loan as a way of payment. He’ll supposedly move there… with the likelihood of us picking up most of the tab for his salary. Whatever, at least he’s not clogging up the squad and at least we don’t have to get to that awkward February period where we lose all our left backs to injury… and suddenly, it’s a toss up between him and a 14 year old Angolan boy from the youth ranks.
One player who is still firmly on the books is Bacary Sagna. He had a shocker of a season last time out, many believing he’d checked out mentally in preparation for his move to a club that could offer him silverware. Well, he’s still here and he’s determined to banish the ghost of last season. In fairness to him, he did come back from a leg break.
“I enjoy playing for Arsenal”
“I love my team, and I always give my best. I’m still here. Many people were talking about me going back to France but I’m still here and I’m looking forward to a big season with Arsenal.”
“Last season was difficult. I only had one year left and people were looking at that and maybe thinking I would leave. But I tried to stay as calm as I could. Now I will work hard in pre-season and have a good season for Arsenal.”
I’m sure he can be a key cog in the Arsenal machine this year, he looked fit the other night, he looked focused and he looked prepared to fight this year. I’m just really pleased we haven’t binned him… because experience wins you titles. Experience teaches the kids how it’s done.
Right, take that and share it out to the world. Even people who don’t like football. Le Grove transcends interests, everyone will be appreciative of a link today.
P.S. We came second in the Online Gooner survey for blogs. Thanks kindly to anyone who took time out to vote. The Gooner is an institution as far as fan publications go, so it means a lot. Not that I’m tolerating second or saying it’s a trophy… what… Pedro out? But I’ve given you 6 years of Champions League Qualification?
Screw you… I’m off to Le-PSG.com