10 point Christmas plan complete | Player troubles ahead of Spurs | Arsenal injury news

by .

rainy emirates

Let’s just start by saying it was cold. It was wet. It was fiercely windy. Anyone bitching about the atmosphere from the comfort of Twitter should take their laptop outside in the garden when it next monsoons. The noise levels were fine considering the game on offer was bland, everyone was hungover and the conditions were disgusting.

Onto the game. Wenger was forced to make mad changes to the starting lineup. Giroud has damaged his leg, Ozil, Rambo, Gibbs were all on the treatment table and plenty of others were also carrying knocks. It was a massive game. If they boys succeeded, we’d remain top of the league for a week and a half or so until the Villa game.

We controlled the opening stages. Cardiff hadn’t come with any sort of adventurous game plan. Defend, hold on for dear life and pinch a goal if possible seemed to be the thinking. We just needed the three points.

Jack played a nice call over the top to Theo early on, he could only slice into the side netting. We were creating half openings but there was a quite casual nature to the game if I’m honest.

Why Arsene started Podolski through the middle is beyond me. He let’s grudges get in the way of logic. Nik B was fit, sharp and he’s not too dissimilar to Giroud in style. Important when the team has played with Giroud 99% of they season. Instead, he opts for Podolski who has barely played a game, doesn’t boast the physicality needed to be a loan striker and does not have the ability to hold the ball up.

This decision resulted in Arsenal opting for long balls over the top. A view of what the world would look like with Theo as the main striker. Due to this tactic, we lost width down the right and effectively ruled Sagna out of the game.

We did create chances though. Wilshere had a shout for a penalty when he was bundled over in the box. Theo shot wide from 10 yards when fed in by Santi.

Down our end, Mutch took a free run at our goal and had a shot well blocked by Chezzer. Defending was a touch casual from Koscielny. There was also a shout for handball when Monreal had the ball rifled at his digits. Never. You have to pick the ball up to get a penalty these days.

Outside that, the collapse of the gutter on the roof was about as interesting as it got. The poor buggers below got totally drenched.

The second half wasn’t particularly interesting until about 60 minutes. By this time, I’d been introduced to something called ‘Bovril’… an interesting drink I can tell you.

Jack Wilshere weaved his way into the box and fired off a shot that rattled the woodwork. I have to be honest, it was right in my line of sight and it looked to me like the keeper touched it onto the post. Needless to say, no damn corner.

Arsene decided to make his subs relatively early. He took off Flamini and the woeful Podolski and he brought on Rosicky and Nik Bendtner. Both made an immediate impact. Straight away we had shape in the forward line. Width was restored (kind of)  and we had a target man. Rosicky came pounding on with energy and zip, despite barely being able to go outside in the training session the day before the game.

The man who nearly had the biggest impact was Per Mertesacker. Clearly believing no one would notice him acting as a striker because he looks a little like Bendtner when wet. He nipped in at the back post and glanced two headers wide in exactly the same fashion. At that point, wet and sodden, you started to think, ‘is this going to be one of those days?’… and I did wish the cameras would stop pointing at Vincent Tan and his smug face.

Our moment came though, Sagna latched onto a ball into the box, his downward header was parried by Marshall, Nik B read the possible parry and nipped in to slam home emphatically! What a relief! So much man love went off in my row. We all totally lost the plot! Incredible relief.

Theo Walcott still had time to finish off the game with a goal. He was slipped through after some great pass exchanges between Rosicky and Wilshere, he floated his shot over the keeper with a lovely chipped effort.

The game was closed out, we’d taken the three points and delivered on the 10 point Christmas plan. Excellent work from the boys.

Concluding Points

Rotation worked

I said before the game, if Wenger made heavy rotations and we’d drawn, he’d have been reluctant to do the same moving forward if he had key players available. You heard him say before the Newcastle game that he’d have played Ozil if he was fit. The manager can’t resist going all out. Hopefully, he’ll see that if he trusts the fringe players, they can do a job. He’s not damned if he does damned if he doesn’t, this season, like all Premiership seasons will be won and lost on how fresh managers can keep their players. ‘Play your best side’ mentality died out about 10 years ago. It’s not possible anymore. You have a highly paid squad so you can play them. Players like Monreal, who was excellent yesterday, need more games. They need to have match sharpness. Same with Gnabry. He’s more than capable, so give him a run out every now and then, so if Theo picks up a knock, we have some pace and form ready to inject into the side.

Everyone wants to play striker

Look, at the game yesterday, I thought Theo was one of our best players. He was a part of everything. He battled, he took shots, he made himself available. But when you watch the game back, he was trying to do the job of Podolski. He wants to play centrally and he makes a beeline when he can to prove he can do it. That restricted us down the right and ruled Sagna out of the overlap. On Lukas, can we all stop pushing him as a central striking option. He’s not technical enough to play with his back to goal, he’s not physical enough and his running off the ball leaves a lot to be desired at the highest level. He’s brilliant out wide. That’s where he should play. Nik B, for me, when he plays like that, can be just as effective as Giroud. Yesterday he ran the channels, he looked for the ball, he brought players into the game and he posed a real threat. Take away the hugely bad press he gets for being an egomaniac and you have a pretty decent player there. It was great that he got a goal, his third if you include the legit goal he scored against City… nice to see the crowd chant his name. Such a shame he picked up a knock.

Players dead

Don’t expect a magical team against Spurs this weekend. Apparently the reason he played Flamini and Arteta yesterday wasn’t tactical, it was because he had no other options. Players are totally washed out. We’re not just talking ‘redzone’ here, we’re talking about players carrying minor knocks as well. So this weekend, he won’t be rotating, he’ll be preventing serious injuries. The underlying problems of rest still haunt Arsenal, we’re getting away with it at the moment, but I’d imagine we were probably the only team in the league that had the players in all over the Christmas period. Not good for the body, and in quite a lot of cases, for players with young families, not good for the mind. I do worry our campaign will come undone in the end because of our approach to player welfare.

However, the current batch of knocks is just a short term issue…

Injury news

Giroud will be back from his injury for the Villa game. He should be joined by Ozil, which is great news. Chambo starts full training next week, so he could make a bench appearance for the Villa game. Massive news as that gives us a very good option in midfield and outwide. I’m really looking forward to seeing what he can offer us in the second half of the season.

Even better news is that Rambo should be back in the side for the Fulham game. He’ll be rested and ready for the run in. That’s also another thing I wanted to point out, the odd 8 day break here and there isn’t enough to bring a player back to full health. It’s quite frightening how many people make sarcastic comments to me about the ‘red zone’ online. I don’t have access to databases, but I think it’s quite apparent as injuries pile up that the squad isn’t in great shape at the moment. There are plenty of places to find info around this sort of stuff if you’re still of the mindset that fitness isn’t one of the most important aspects of taking  the league crown.


Sadly, there’s no Nik B for at least a couple of weeks. So the urgency for signing a striker just kicked up a gear. I have no idea who we’re chasing. I just hope there’s a plan. I’d imagine there’s probably quite a lot of appeal when it comes to joining Arsenal. Massive wages, title contending side, being supplied by some of the most in form players around. The stumbling blocks are going to be clubs who are competing won’t want to sell in January and players who are in the sort of form we need them to be in to join us won’t want heading into a world cup. Form can be a temperamental thing…

Next up…

Spurs. It’s always a massive game. They’ll have a manager desperate to make a mark on that job, so he’ll be going all out against us. I think it’s going to be a very tough game for us to win. So let’s see what happens!

P.S. Delaware took incompetence to new levels yesterday. They ran out of food. Nothing quite like cold kids being made to queue up for 15 minutes to be told that. Embarrassing lack of planning from a company that clearly don’t care about anything other than raking in the cash they’re driving from the 25 year contract they were awarded. Arsenal should opt for independents next time.

523 Responses to “10 point Christmas plan complete | Player troubles ahead of Spurs | Arsenal injury news”

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  1. gambon

    “Citeh haven’t simply picked these strikers, they’ve absolutely flooded the team/squad with them, ”

    So have we.

    Incase you hadnt noticed Gervinho, Chamakh and Park all came in and failed.

    Giroud is hardly a success and Wengers gone cold on Podolski.

    You seem to under estimate how much money we have available.

  2. Pedro

    Gambon, talking of wastes… how about Sanogo. He came in, signed a deal, got injured… fucked off to France and is only now coming back.

    What a life eh?

  3. K.C.

    Jackson Martinez scored 26 goals in 30 league appearances last season for Porto. So far this season he’s tallied 12 goals in 14 games. This guy scores for fun. Perfect fit and could be available now. If we need another CM that can fill in for Flamini or Arteta, Essien is looking to get out of Chelsea.

  4. tunnygriffboy

    It could be possible that we won’t get top CF this summer as there too few around and are at a premium. Personally if Real make Suarez their Marquee signing then Benzema may be available. We may go for a Remy type and possibly spend big on a Draxler and a top DM.y

    Stop gap I would take Morata and at a push Berbatov. If we want a top CB at 3rd choice Wenger must show trust to rotate them

  5. Keyser

    gambon – Lol was that a serious post ?

    Anyway, do you understand the point, we can’t fuck around just buying random big name stars, because even Citeh who have woefully underachieved are now starting to show some sort of efficiency.

  6. vicky

    All that we need from Berba is 15-20 min of football to change things up If required . I am sure he is fit enough to offer that much. Plus, no one is touting him to be a long term solution. An option for 6 months at 2m, in case we do not find someone better.

  7. gambon


    Ridiculous signing, and everyone said it at the time.

    Wenger has tried everything when it comes to CFs in recent years.

    He raided Ligue 1, as always, for their top scorer (Giroud) he went for a freebie (Chamakh), he bought a ridiculously raw Winger and tried him upfront (Gervinho), hes given Bendtner another chance, he made the most bizarre signing in histroy (Park) and he even tried to raid Ligue 2 (Sanogo). He signed a wide striker from Germany (Podolski) said he was a central player, then quickly backtracked.

    Hes also signed a Brazilian and Costa Rican that cant even get a permit, as well as a terrible japanese kid.

    Hes tried to do everything BUT just spend money on an established, top class CF.

    So thats

    Gervinho £11m
    Podolski £11m
    Giroud £12m
    Chamakh (Free, £60k pw)
    Sanogo (Free)
    Park £5m
    Wellington £3m
    Campbell £1m

    So thats £43m and absolutely enormous wages, and we are still in a position where our rivals have better CFs on the bench than we have in the first team.

    So maybe for once, can Wenger just try the one thing he hasnt done, and signed a non-ligue one established, top class CF?

  8. Keyser

    “How has Wenger gone cold on Podolski? The guys been injured for 4 months.”

    It’s mindboggling the shit people come out with. Came back with an assist and a goal aswell.

  9. GoonPharm

    Really feel for Diaby. He was hailed as the next big thing in France along with that dolphin headed bloke we signed from Chelsea.

    When on form he was a beast in the midfield. Probably had his best start to a campaign last season until he got crocked. You never know, he may just surprise us in March/April where he turns up and sees us through to the end of the season.

    Would be nice. Doubt it, but still.

  10. Sam

    The truth is akpom n afobe could both make it big at arsenal.
    With the midfield we have, the job of striker has become so easy I am sure van persie wished he never left.
    I am not anti giroud at all but I think others should be given a run.
    Look at wellbeck, 4 goals in 4, sturridge will do the same
    Being stuck with giroud n bendtner as his sub is so painful

  11. gambon

    Such a myth that Diaby is even a half decent player.

    He has one good performance every 18 months and that convinces people hes any good.

    He didnt have a good start last season, he was his usual half brained self.

    He had precisely one good game agsint Liverpool, and yet again history is rewritten and “Diaby had a great start to the season”

  12. Keyser

    gambon – That has to be one of your dopiest posts yet.

    That is not close to what Citeh have done.

    Now before you go and spaz out, that wasn’t the point, it’s how we bridge the gap, do you get it ?

  13. gambon

    “That is not close to what Citeh have done.”

    Hence why we have £150m in the bank, nearly all of which we dont need.

  14. Pedro

    You just scoffed at Pod falling out of favour with Arsene.

    He spent most of preseason on the bench.

    He’s certainly not the golden child.

  15. gambon

    ….we do however need a top class CF that can win games, score away from home, and score against big teams.

    I would rather have a top CF and £100m in the bank that Giroud, Bendtner and £150m.

  16. vicky

    Well, there are not enough quality strikers in the world. And the few that we have are snared away by the likes of PSG,Monaco and City. No wonder, we see managers taking a punt on unknown players.

    Even, Bayern had to take a punt on Madjukic. Juventus had to take Nik B on loan ffs.
    So, I do not see much wrong in Wenger trying out a few kids in the forward areas. And not all those in 43m budget have been flops.

    Giroud and Poldi have been reasonably successful.

  17. Pedro

    Marc, that’s what I was told… there’s no such thing as a ‘fact’ when you’re talking about football.

    So when people say, ‘I won’t believe this unless I have names and quotes’, it’s a bit pointless.

  18. Keyser

    Pedro – Scoffed ? No, it’s just a completely ridiculous comment.

    That’s what upset you ?

    He’s spent 4 months out with injury, how does that put him on the cold list ? It’s like saying Wenger’s fallen out of favour with Diaby.

    Well how do you know that ?

    He’s not playing is he.

  19. gazzap

    The point about giving our youth a chance is that if Giroud is number 1 anyway, then no point in bringing in a player like Berba to sit on the bench, when it could easily lead to Wenger not spending money on a striker in the summer. Rather see what the kids can do and get a top CF in the summer. May mean we won’t win the league but they may happen anyway.
    Of course first option should always be to buy quality if available. I’d only go for Berba if he accepts that he could sit on the bench and doesn’t try to destroy team morale. I think this is a big risk. £2m is nothing so it’s not about money. Probably paper talk anyhow.

  20. gambon

    “Rather see what the kids can do and get a top CF in the summer.”

    Sorry but i hate that attitude.

    We are top of the PL after 20 games, and we’re gonna risk the PL on an 18 year old?

    Imagine last game of the season, a vital one we need to win, and we have 18 year old Akpom making his first appearance at this level.

    It would be negligence.

  21. Keyser

    “Hence why we have £150m in the bank, nearly all of which we dont need.”

    No, it’s not.

    “I would rather have a top CF and £100m in the bank that Giroud, Bendtner and £150m.”

    Yeah, because that’s how it works, in a parrallel universe somewhere gambon1 has just made a similar post for how much Citeh have spent on ACTUAL top class centreforwards, hopefully you’ll both meet at some point and come up with a post that makes sense.

  22. Marc

    Pedro – I wasn’t being difficult there! To me Podolski is a useful squad member, he’s a proven international who can weigh in with 10+ league goals and a decent number of assists (playing wide of course) during a season. If we are going to move him on no problem as long as we bring in someone to strengthen the team / squad.

  23. WengerEagle

    Diaby wasn’t, is not and never will be a top player, it’s complete bullshit that he was ever better than average for us in 9 out of every 10 matches he played . I swear Carl Jenkinson could suffer a long-term injury and people would be comparing him to Lauren

  24. zeus

    Keyser January 2, 2014 15:55:29

    vicky “The only reason he has not done well for Fulham because he could not care less and he does not get good supply.”

    Lol was that serious ? If that’s not enough I’d be worried that his legs are gone and wandering around trying to show a few silky touches every game is all he has left.

    Did he get good service at United? Don’t want him, he’s twice as infuriating as Arshavin. No one should be carried in this squad.

  25. Keyser

    zeus – At 32 million moving to Manchester United he shouldn’t really be worried about good service, that was more my point, he should be affecting the game himself.

    You have to wonder if he’s done, even in a poor team players stand out, Chamakh actually acores for Crystal Palace.

    Bendtner tries, well tried, I don’t think anyone in THIS Arsenal team is really being carried, they give their all if it’s good enough or not.

  26. Bero

    Berba is known to be a negative force in dressing rooms when he’s not happy. Which he wouldn’t be as soon as he’s benched. He’s got a lovely finish on him as times but his legs are gone, he has a bad attitude (and attitude is what’s keeping this team ticking), he’s lazy and he’s been consistent with those traits at multiple clubs.

    Remy is the only realistic prem target I could see really helping us if we can get past the loan situation with QPR and the player forces the move too.. Newcastle would be pissed too which makes it even more appealing

    Aside from him we have to look abroad. Jackson and Costa the obvious choices for me.

  27. BillikenGooner

    Places/players to upgrade:

    RB – Sagna (age)
    DM – Arteta (age)
    CF – Giroud (skill)
    CM – Rosicky – (age) could be filled by a healthy Chamberlain
    CD – (probably bc Verm will leave and we are short in numbers)

  28. ikon

    I will be happy to have Berbatov in the team. A class act and fits into the system better than anyone in the premier league currently.

  29. vicky

    I have seen on numerous occasions Berba architect a wonderful move and then get in to a wonderful position in the box only to see a fellow Fulham player end up making a horrendous pass to kill the attack off.

    And as far his career is concerned, he was the top scorer in his penultimate season,wasn’t he ??

  30. Leedsgunner

    “Rather get a top CF in the summer.”

    How do we do know we will do this? Especially in a World Cup year? Do we trust the club now do we? We are a trusting lot aren’t we? The season ticket renewal team must rub their hands with glee when they read quotes like this.

    The time to strengthen is now.

  31. Pedro

    Keyser, you don’t upset me.

    You scoff at everything. It’s part of Le Grove.

    ‘keyser agreed with something…’

    Now that would upset me.

  32. Sam

    Like I said:
    Being a striker at arsenal has never been this easy

    Wenger made it difficult by insisting on giroud and bendtner
    Even Defoe will play like romario in front of this midfield
    Not saying we should sign the little spud,

  33. Cesc Appeal


    ‘keyser agreed with something…

    Don’t say stuff like that!!

    That would lead to a mass exodus of people from Le grove, screaming and throwing their laptops/tablets/smart phones what have you, at the closet moving vehicles.

  34. Pedro

    I think Le Grove would implode…

    It would signify something… like the four horsemen… it’d be a terrible day.

  35. Cesc Appeal


    If you’re clever, you can get him to disagree with you, have a long argument, then make a point toward the end that he made at the beginning – and he’ll disagree with it.

    Think Einstein wrote something about that? If you had a powerful enough telescope and pointed it out into the Universe you’d end up staring at the back of your own head?

    I think Einstein might have had an online dispute with Keyser.

  36. Leedsgunner


    In response to your question – why do they fail to learn?

    Wenger has too much power. He fails to prepare. He dithers. He doesn’t pay the going price for world class players but over pays for unproven (and injury prone) talents.

    There is no reason in the world why we shouldn’t have our targets identified and tied up as soon as the window opens. In fact I would argue that’s what we used to do when Dein was at the club.

    What does Gazidas actually add to the club?

  37. Keyser

    Cesc Appeal – “If you’re clever, you can get him to disagree with you”

    Some day young padawan, some day.. If you work hard, read intently and practice you might not Jedimindfuck yourself so often.

  38. vicky

    Keyser makes Le Grove more interesting to be honest. In his absence, the comment section becomes a one-way traffic which I am sure is not quite healthy for good debates. Just that his posts are a bit circuitous. Requires a lot of effort on our part to understand what he wants to say.

  39. Marko

    I don’t see why we can’t raid the likes of Basel (Salah or Schar) or Shakthar (Douglas Costa or Luiz Adriano) for players given they’ve been knocked out the Champions League and could look to get rid of a couple players. Or even Dortmund for someone like Reus given that they seemed to be doing really poor in the league over there and he could look to move here and contest for the league. Muriel at Udinese isn’t cup tied, Damiao and Pato from the Brazilian league could do a job. Pato injuries aside had amazing potential, very Suarez like

  40. Keyser

    Heh, I wouldn’t say Circuitous, I’d say that almost every argument made on here, despite people telling you otherwise, is open ended and simply their opinion.

    That should be the given. There are no real experts on here.

    Like Berbatov he’s nearly 33, has never been one to look like he’s putting the effort in, even if he is, I think he’s barely made an impact this year at Fulham and almost everything points towards him winding his career down towards retirement.

    The other side is that nothing’s certain, he could in a specific circumstance still be effective, the choice is something Wenger will weigh up.

    All we can do is guess.

  41. Sam

    Gambon is just an idiot

    It’s not obsession with kid you dummy
    Look at bendtner, 2 goals in 4 months
    One from header against hull n one from rebound
    Akpom or afobe would have done better.
    Giroud misses have been really embarrassing, still he cannot be benched because he’s 27 years old? Lol!
    What a logic

  42. Android Gooner

    “The stumbling blocks are going to be clubs who are competing won’t want to sell in January”

    Guess that means we can snap up Wayne Rooney then…lol

    Seriously though…Juan Mata starting to look more likely

  43. Mayank

    I want to see the kids play the FAC. I don’t see us staying in 3 competitions anyway so a spirited loss may be better than a draining win.

    However, the effect of losing to spurs on morale is hard to predict. A two week break for the squad will be lovely.

    I’ve changed my mind 3 times while writing this post. Wouldn’t want to be Wenger.

  44. Sam

    How da fuck would you explain sanogo got a first team shirt he hasnt even trained for us. Campbell got shoved in plane to Greece just hours after bragging that he just won a work permit.
    He could have been a useful player for us this season

  45. Marko

    For me the midfield looks solid and defensively we’ve been brilliant (even though we’re short if we have injuries but who isn’t) but if we could make 2 additions to the attack then we could go on and win the league it’s there for us to have a real go. Sometimes we just lack a bit of imagination in attack and another striker and someone who can play on the left to rotate with Podolski/Santi would help a great deal. Someone like Ayew? Douglas Costa? Draxler? Cerci? Griezmann?

  46. Bacaryisgod

    I’m not sure if Berbatov’s attitude would stink if he came here. He would know his role and probably fit in just fine. We have senior players (Rosicky, Arteta, Mertesacker, Flamini) who would would welcome and incorporate him into the group.

    The big question mark is whether he can deliver the defensive pressure upfront that helps us recover possession. Still, it would be an intriguing move and worth a punt. Plus it would aggravate both United and Spurs which might be worth it alone.

  47. Leedsgunner


    But what do you mean? Top players aren’t available until the summer… EVERYONE knows that. (*facepalm*).

    But seriously, you make reasonable suggestions but I doubt we’ll go for them. Honestly, herd mentality takes over and people are afraid to to think outside the box in the transfer window.

    Ironic really since Wenger created his first period of success by thinking different from everyone else.

    The innovator is now too afraid to innovate.

  48. Marko

    There are players available in Jan it’s just tough to get who you really want. Andre Ayew, Griezmann, Douglas Costa, Salah have been linked with us in the past are attainable we just have to be willing to get them. Hell even Mata seems like he might be available this month so the the theory that you can only buy the best in the summer isn’t true. Jackson Martinez seems to be shopping himself this month too.

  49. karim

    Madrid beat PSG 1-0 in a very pleasant rainy game in a full stadium in Doha.
    PSG had something like 25 shots, should have scored at least 3 or 4

    matuidi and verrati bossed the midfield, CR7 just played 45 mns benzema hit the bar after a superb move and Lucas cannot stop getting past opponents
    world class player in less than 2 seasons

    ps : Abou Diaby brings so much confidence to the team when he s fit, it s unreal, could have been our very own yaya Touré imo

  50. Al

    We have a team at the moment that has an excellent attitude and work effort and people want to see Berbatov in the team?

    That makes no sense to me.

    We have the prestige and th finance to not penny pinch and look for the cheapest option. Just go out and get what you need because Berbatov is not the answer.

    He simply is an unmotivated footballer who had it all set up for him to be a legend at one of the most successful clubs in the world with one of the most successful managers of all time.

    No doubt he was good for them but he never reached the heights he should have because he was and is lazy

  51. Marko

    I wouldn’t touch Berbatov in the slightest. We need a striker cup tied or not to come in who can get 10-15 goals in the second half of the season and who is better than what we’ve got and that aint Berbatov.

  52. Ben

    Arsene was already complaining about our recent schedule (Everton, Napoli, City, Chelsea). To be fair to him he didn’t do it before the games (as he has done in previous years paving the way for a defeat) but subsequently to justify a drop in performance.

    Now, the schedule from mid March looks considerably worse, horrendous in fact- Munich away, Spurs away, Chelsea away, City home, Everton away in a 3 week period. We simply cannot afford to go into that period without proven golascorers on the pitch and on the bench. People saying Akpom, Aneke etc should be given a chance are risking our whole season on youth team players. In those games we won’t get many chances and will need to take what we get. Wenger has to buy a proven striker to supplement our attack.

    If I was Gazidis I would show Wenger that schedule and say “Right Arsene, no bullshit, what we gonna do about this”. I’m seriously hoping they had that conversation 3 weeks ago but we all know what happens at AFC……

  53. Marko

    Think of the signal of intent we’d show if we went out this month and signed a Reus or Jackson Martinez or Diego Costa. It’d be huge

  54. Simon

    Berbatov would be a good plan. Fit in. Get lots of service from our guys. Finishes well.

    But isn’t he the only player that Fulham actually have?

  55. Emiratesstroller

    Let’s be quite clear Wenger is not going to pay a significant transfer fee for anyone in this Transfer Window unless he is genuinely top drawer. He has said as much in his recent interview.

    I am suspicious about the suggestion that he will buy Berbatov at a transfer fee of £2-3 Million not to mention his wages, because this acquisition will be ‘short term’. I don’t know how much he earns at Fulham, but I bet that he will expect at least £50k pw. That means Arsenal are spending between £3.5-4.5 Million on this player with absolutely no return on investment at end of June!

    Remember that Fulham tried to screw us when we wanted to bring in Hangeland. Wenger did not rise to the bait then.

    The bottom line is that Wenger will want to bring in a high quality striker in the Summer and not go out and spend money with small return in January. He is not a manager who thinks generally short term.

    When you look around the market there are absolutely no strikers of
    top quality likely to become available in January. Here is a list of probably 12 of the best.
    Ronaldo [Real Madrid]
    Messi [Barcelona]
    Costa [Athletico Madrid]
    Falcao [Monaco]
    Ibrahimovic [Paris St Germain]
    Carvani [Paris St Germain]
    Lewandowski [Borussia Dortmund]
    Higuain [Napoli]
    Aguero [Man City]
    Rooney [Man Utd]
    Van Persie [Man Utd]
    Suarez [Liverpool]

    All but Suarez are Champions League Cup Tied and most have signed
    new contracts.

    If you are going to buy such players then you will now expect to pay more than for Ozil. Arsenal will not spend big money in January because they have spent net over £30 million in this financial year and
    the club like to balance their books.

    Personally I think that Wenger will try and muddle his way through this transfer window. He will make a commitment to keep Bendtner
    who is now injured. Noone is going to pay a transfer fee for this player
    knowing that he can go on Bosman in Summer.

    Despite the large number of posters who do not rate Giroud the man
    who makes decisions is Wenger and he happens to rate this player,
    because he is hard working and adds physicality to what is fundamentally a technical and rather small team.

    Several teams around Europe look today at alternative ways of solving
    goalscoring problems. Chelsea have three strikers who are not exactly
    firing on all cylinders and they are scoring most of their goals in midfield. Similarly Barcelona have also relied heavily on Fabregas and Sanchez in absence of Messi neither of whom is conventional striker.

  56. Ben

    …..because deep down we can all see what’s going to happen. Big game away at Chelsea, need to grab a goal to stay Top of the League….. on comes Ryo Miyaichi.

    If that happens again this year I will never forgive Wenger.

  57. Leedsgunner

    “Personally I think that Wenger will try and muddle his way through this transfer window.”

    To think he is paid £7.5m a year to muddle through. I sincerely hope he proves us wrong Emiratesstroller.

  58. Simon


    Agree with lots you said but not the balance the books bit. That isn’t why we won’t buy in January – if we don’t it’s because we can’t.

  59. Thorough

    Why the hell do we have to bother ourselves 24,7 thinking about a good striker? FFS this sick Pinochio did everything but his job while we discussed the same subject for 3months during the summer. Wenger you nu**er, we need a striker and we need it now. Sort it out goofball.

  60. Marko

    I doubt he’ll leave too what with Atletico having a genuine chance of winning La Liga but the fact that Diego Costa has a clause in his contract and we need a top class forward and football can be surprising sometimes especially in transfer windows then he can’t totally be counted out. In saying that Pato/Muriel and a winger would be a good window too.

  61. Ben

    Emirates Stroller, sorry your list of 12 names is ridiculous – Ronaldo, Messi, Aguero, Ibrahimovic, Falcao, Suarez – we all know there is not a chance in hell of us signing any of those players.
    You can’t tell me that outisde of that list that there is not anybody in the world who we could buy in Jan who would improve our squad? I’ll be honest I don’t have time to watch a lot of football outside England but from the La Liga highlights there are some decent players outside of Barca / Real – Javi Guerra at Valladolid for example. Diego Costa is the obvious one which has been well flagged. Hell I’d even take Vela back if he can do a job off the bench. Wenger / Gazidis and our scouting network who are paid to do this everyday MUST be able to find a striker who could improve our team.

  62. Guns of brixton

    I just read that Diaby article. ”i hope this is the real return” reading that in hindsight ripped my heart rite out. He wants to play, he wants to contribute but he cant, and he cannot help it. im sure he would love to play, than be a walking sicknote .

  63. Jake

    Costa won’t leave. He’s on the edge of the Spain team and he needs to stay there to get it. Add that to how Atleti are doing at the moment and I just can’t see it happening.

  64. gary

    Fair play to gambon..knows exactly How much Arsenal havé in the bank .. all of which is irrelavant anyway because it dépends How much is made available

  65. Bamford13

    Mikel Arteta, yesterday, on Nicklas Bendtner:

    “His attitude has been spot on since I’ve been here and he knows he has to wait for his time … The manager decided to play Lukas up front but when he [Bendtner] came on I think he looked really sharp and he looked dangerous.”

    So he’s shown a good attitude for some time now and is looking sharp and dangerous in games. This according not to Bamford13, but Mikel Arteta.

    Good on you, Nicklas.

  66. Jake


    They’ve only been together since the start of this season and he’s hardly gonna say “his attitude has been shit, he never tries”, is he?

  67. Dissenter

    Can’t we just recall campbell from Greece. He was always going to come back in the summer because he’ll get a work permit easily.
    Hes probably among the bright spots of our loaning system. He can take the space that Park is filling.

  68. Bamford13

    I’d love either Jackson Martinez or Luis Muriel in January, but if something along those lines isn’t possible, I think Berbatov would be excellent cover.

    Fantastically skillful and would certainly work for a great club in pursuit of trophies. Like every footballer, he wants glory, and we would give him an opportunity for it.

    Also, Nicklas is better than Giroud. If Wenger doesn’t bring in someone better than Giroud in January, then Nicklas deserves a legitimate shot at being the #1 when he returns. Wenger needs to put his grudge against him aside, and his comments the other day suggest that he now has.

  69. gary

    Of course the money is needed Simon but the point i,m trying to make is it dosnt matter How much We havé if the board are only giving AW à limited amount .. now We havé money but the reason hé came out with 4th is a trophey is because hé was basically saying .. getting 4th with fuc all to spend is like winning à cup

  70. peanuts&monkeys

    Gambon wrote: “We are top of the PL after 20 games, and we’re gonna risk the PL on an 18 year old?”,
    OR, if i may rephrase…
    “We are top of the PL after 20 games, and I’m gonna risk this PL by not spending some 50 Million only for a CF?”

    I think that should be the most inspiring thought that can get into Wenger’s head and stay there for the next few weeks. Let this thought eat out his remaining grey cells till he ‘indulges’ this January.

    Go get Rooney, Wenger. Give us this PL and we forgive you for everything you did to us since 2004.

  71. Dissenter

    Berbatov will be stupid to accept a short term deal from anyone. He’ll be 33 and should be looking the longest deal possible top pay a good salary till he’s 35-36 year old.
    I really cant see any big team wasing so much salary space on a player with no resale vaue.

  72. Bamford13


    Supporters like you are exasperating. Nicklas scores a fantastic game winner, Arteta swears by his attitude, the boss commends him for all he has been through over past sixmonths, and what does he get from the likes of supporters like yourself?

    A shrug of the shoulders.

    What is it with you guys? Do you dislike him because he’s arrogant? Because he wanted to leave the club at some point? Because he believes your girlfriend or wife would rather sleep with him?

    So what. That’s actually why I like him. He has a bit of personality, which is more than can be said for many of our players.

    The blind Nicklas hate needs to stop. He’s putting in sincere effort and deserves support from the fans. He’s also better than Giroud, and if Wenger doesn’t bring in a striker in January, we’re going to need Nicklas.

  73. Bamford13


    I like you better as redtothecore.

    And yes, Bendtner is better than Giroud, something I hope will be borne out clearly with time. For me it’s obvious, but I wouldn’t know exactly how to persuade you otherwise. Nicklas will have to do that with his play.

    One thing I can say, though: Giroud isn’t even coordinated enough to have finished Bendtner’s game-winner. Review some of Giroud’s recent attempts to strike a ball above his knee. It’s f.ing embarrassing the guy is so clumsy and uncoordinated.

    Keep supporting Giroud, though, and I’ll take Nicklas. We will see who has backed the better striker.

  74. Hitman49


    You clearly said gray cells ?

    Not grey cell.

    Sorry to be picky but he only has the one,
    As our present situation clearly shows.

    No CF but 150 mill in cash………

  75. Gambon

    Jake and other Giroud nut huggers, stop being homosexual and emotional twats. Just admit Giroud is not good enough to lace Nicklas Bendtner’s boots. Its very clear. Giroud is shit and shouldn’t be playing for a top team like Arsenal

  76. Jake

    I didn’t say he was bad, I thought he was excellent when he came on but you’re using that Arteta quote as if it cancels out all other evidence of his bad attitude. I don’t care what he does off the pitch, that’s not the attitude I’m referring to, I’m on about his attitude towards his football and it’s been pretty poor for his whole career, a few words from one his teammates isn’t gonna change my opinion.

  77. Bacaryisgod


    Arsene has signed players for short-term needs a number of times in the past. Recent years have included Sol Campbell, Thierry Henry and Yossi Benayoun. Berbatov would fit a similar profile. It’s not something that would excite me but it would be a viable option given our current situation and still leave the door open for a big summer signing.

  78. Savage

    Interesting stats on BBC, showing compiled stats for whole of 2013, including the table of points:

    – Arsenal 5 points clear
    – second best defence behind Everton
    – fewest losses
    – highest ratio of shots on target at 49%
    – third best ratio of goals per shots at 17%
    – only fourth most goals, showing that defence has been key to our success
    – Podolski highest shots to goals ratio at 44% (Suarez not in top 10)
    – second worst red cards
    – Ramsey most successful passes

  79. Leedsgunner


    An excellent post about the few tough months that lie ahead. Hopefully they are looking forward too and using this transfer window to prepare for it. I find the club very myopic at times. When we win we are of great mental strength… but when we lose often the same individuals (because Wenger largely does not rotate) are excused for having the proverbial handbrake on. Which is it? Handbrake or mentally strong?

    I hope Wenger spends and spends smart – and spends to strengthen the team and not just bolster his ego. I can guarantee you this, on our present form, we have the best chance in years to win and if he doesn’t he will ruin his reputation and legacy at the club.

    No one will remember him for leading the league at New Year but many will blame for losing it in May. The opportunity is there for him to grab it, will he?

    I sincerely hope so.

  80. Gambon

    Simon you idiot! Would be nice if you could pull out of Jake’s rear end. Also stop wanking off to Giroud posters…. fu.ckin gay ass twat!

  81. Bacaryisgod


    I agree with you on Bendtner and I think both he and Wenger made a difficult situation into a positive one. They needed each other, put their egos to one side and made a pact that seems to be working.

    You’re still wrong on Giroud though.

  82. Simon


    Of course you did! He was a parody!

    Hey, I watched Bentner fuck it up for years and I paid good money for the privilege! No thanks. Happy to disagree.

    Looking forward to some real forwards in the summer.

  83. Guns of brixton

    Berbatov maybe annouced (if a done deal) sometime nxt this week.
    source: a guy, who knows a guy, who knows a guy who knows a guy in the AFC hierachy.

  84. Gambon

    No one cares about what this fu.cker Bacaryisgod says. You are a Wengerite who would be happy with a 4th place finish for Arsenal. Cunt

  85. Mayank

    “He has a bit of personality, which is more than can be said for many of our players.”

    These comments make me laugh. Plenty of players have personalities. Most just manage to stay professional and not let it effect their performance. Nik wasn’t able to.

    I’m glad that he’s back in shape and looking to contribute to our season. But that’s the bare minimum expected from a player who’s getting 52k p/w. People let so much slide when it comes to Nik it’s absurd. He’s not your chum who gives a fuck if he’s a #lad or not.

  86. Dissenter

    What else do you expect from Bendtner?
    He waited patiently until his number got called by Wenger. He went in did his job at the risk of injury. What else do you want from him.
    Sometimes you just have to let bygones be bygones.

  87. useroz

    Wenger thinks

    Bendtner is not French and not from Ligue 1. Naturally behind Giroud however poor Giroud may be.

    Apkom is not French and not from Ligue 2. Shipped out to not kill Sanogo esp the latter is inkiry prone.

    Irresponsible, since 2004.

  88. Emiratesstroller


    If you read my earlier threads I made the point that ‘top strikers’ are outside our price range. Most of those listed are going to cost in current market £50 million plus.

    You are right Wenger will buy someone who is ‘talented’ but maybe not at moment top draw. However, any decent striker will cost us £25 million plus. Wenger may have broken a habit of a lifetime when he paid £44 million for Ozil, but that does not mean that he will follow Man City or Chelsea’s example
    and buy wholesale players over £30 million.

    Wenger has always acted like a bookkeeper and managed the finances carefully. He spent less in the summer than in previous two years. That was because he sold just £12 million of players.

    Frankly I don’t think that he will spend much more net next summer. If I was
    a betting man I think that he will buy perhaps Draxler because of his potential
    and then perhaps spend a modest budget on one other player. If he does that
    then he will not have a big budget for a striker.

    If Draxler comes then I expect him to sell Vermaelen,Podolski or Cazorla. That
    might free up some additional funds.

  89. Simon


    Now I understand. He’s biased to the French! They explains Ozil, bergkamp, kanu, Ramsey, wilshire, Walcott, cazorla and all those other frenchies! I won’t call you an idiot but let’s leave it hanging! Happy new year!