Centre back nightmare…

by .


Now we’re over in the States, it’s become apparent what a mess our centre back situation is. We basically have one available for the opener against Palace as things stand. The priority is two centre backs. With TV looking to move because of the way he was treated last season, we have Koscielny… no Mertesacker as he’s on an extended rest… and Miquel.

This is seriously bad news. It’s bad planning again. The club could have taken Lescott on a free or at least made a move earlier than preseason tour time.

So much progress felt like it had been made, but with a few deals falling through, it’s now clear we’re flapping around in the sea of misfits to make something happen. Ospina, Debuchy and Sanchez are very good players, but they were the bare minimum. Even Sanchez is filler in a way because we only had one striker last season.

Arsenal lack players. We need at least 6, so far we’re at 3 and our first preseason game is on Saturday. It’s worrying.

Arsene Wenger is complaining about preseason preparation because of the World Cup and overseas commitments. Not really sure what you can do here. Arsenal are a business, that business affords him and 25 of his squad a tremendous salary that can only be supplemented by having good commercials running through the club. The good news is all club’s preseason is disrupted by preseason. The bad news is other clubs build bigger squads to reduce the burden.

Still, there are worse places you could spend 5 days. New York is an amazing City and the facilities will be world class. The flight isn’t that bad either.

There are some interesting transfer rumours floating around. SPORT, who get some pretty good gossip despite me not really knowing what they are or how they operate as a publisher… have stated Arsenal are about to sign 33 year old Iker Casillas. I’m pretty certain this is 100% nonsense, because we’re chasing down Ospina and he is the chosen one. He’s also much younger, again, something that’s interesting for the future of Chezzer.

Italy are reporting that Galliani of Milan is going to offer us Balottelli… in exchange for us giving them Joel Campbell and £10m. I mean, what a fucking deal that’d be. I don’t think Arsene is going to have that though, even though he should. That’s like swapping Sanogo for Diego Costa. TAKE IT ARSENE. He won’t though, he has his forward line set.

The reason the rumours are so persistent is everyone in Italy hates Milans £180k a week striker. We’re the only club with the need and the finances to make a move happen. Not to mention Mario is a Puma man.

Arsenal.com are peddling rumours they’ve found about Nani. Again, feels like nonsense to me. He’s probably tied down to a David Moyes sanctioned £190m a week deal. So no chance there!

We’re being linked with Matija Nastasic as well. he’d be excellent cover. We’re chasing all sorts of centre backs at the moment because things are desperate. He’d be great because he’s only 21 and has the potential to be a bit special. We’ll see though, chances are, we’ll end up with Ron Vlaar’s younger brother who has two broken legs.

Imagine that, Koscielny and Miquel as our pairing for the first game. BAD TIMES. Might have to keep Thomas on the books again.

That’s me done, Arsenal play tomorrow, so I’ll see you melt bags then!

727 Responses to “Centre back nightmare…”

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  1. Paulinho

    Jenkinson being told to leave will be like the scene in Philadelphia when Tom Hank’s character gets fired.

    “What’s that on your forehead Carl?”.

  2. Samir


    Sanchez – RM, LM, ST
    Debuchy – RB, CM
    Ospina – GK
    Chambers – RB, CB

    Very versatile players. (Bar Ospina obviously) Wenger loves a versatile player doesn’t he.

    Add to the list Phil Jones in a swap deal with Vermy. He can play CB, RB and DM.

    DM and maybe a LM/ST and we’re set.

  3. Samir

    Oh, just tweeted again…

    ‘Pogba noise coming from twitter. Sounds like bollocks to me. I mean, professionally, why would he?’

  4. nasri's mouth

    Mad that we’ve spent £12m on Chambers when a week ago we were looking at Manquillo on loan for about £1m

  5. bishop


    That was loan fee
    This a 5 year permanent contract and knows all about the league already and versatile

  6. Marko

    Eh Ospina can make decent coffee as well as keep. Also I get that generally this is a blog for the downcast some might say at times but where’s the pride? Why we always putting down the club we profess to love? “Professionally why would Pogba join us”? Well we’re not Shit some might say we’re up and coming and well Italian football is Shit and Juve aren’t better than us I’m sorry.

    In saying all that no way is Pogba joining. Carvalho or Schneiderlin likely it seems

  7. Marko

    Also remember the links to Chambers wouldn’t go away a few weeks ago when we were signing Debuchy and seemingly Manquillo too. Makes you think maybe there’s something in the links to Casillas and Balotelli that just won’t go away either

  8. salparadisenyc

    Under the radar and with pace that transfer… echoes Fast Freddy barring the under the radar bit.

  9. N5

    I’m telling you guys, every season Wenger pulls out a transfer that no one was expecting. Good or bad he never fails to make one surprise purchase.

  10. Cesc Appeal

    I just like that this signals we’re doing stuff totally off the radar.

    Please, please let a CDM be next – has to be.

  11. Salvage

    So are Southampton still going to be left with anyone at the club? I have never seen such a thing in football. They are worse than Ajax of the 90s and early 2000s

  12. salparadisenyc


    I’m confident deals are being sorted for Javi Martinez and Reus as we sleep.
    Under the radar.

    Sleep tight son.

  13. Cesc Appeal


    If that happens…I don’t know what I’ll do.

    Pedro tweeted abut some rumours surrounding Pogba – did say they were balls.

    But Wenger described him as the best player of tomorrow playing today, or something like that.

    He’d cost a shit load though, £40-60 Million and to be honest he isn’t a CDM. Great signing, but not for what we need. Now if we sign Pogba And Vidal… 🙂

  14. Cesc Appeal


    They shouldn’t be with the Liebherr family backing them.

    And surely by now they should be well, well in the green. If they needed £27 Million Luke Shaw got rid of that and then some!

    So they’ve banked £25 Million for Lallana, £20 Million for Lovren, £9 Million from Lambert and depending on who you listen to either £7 Million, £12 Million or £16 Million for Chambers.

    Bought Tadic as well who looks handy for £10 Million which seems a good price.

    Certainly though the sheer volume of players they’ve sold and for the massive fees suggests something is up. This is Lovren, Lallana, Shaw and Lambert all gone from their starting eleven, another potential future star in Chambers going and if the rumoured deals for Schneiderlin and Rodriguez go through that’ll be Lovren, Lallana, Shaw, Lambert, Schneiderlin and Rodriguez gone from their starting line up.

    6 players, over half their starting 11 – that is crazy. Going to have to lean on that academy and some talent like Ward-Prowse stepping up big style! Trying to buy to replace could blow up in their face. (Be slinging mad verses there fool.)

    I think though Gnabry will be part of the Chambers deal, go on a season long loan there. Great for us and them.

  15. tunnygriffboy

    Finally caught up with the 5 pages of posts 🙂

    What a night on here. Fell asleep for 5 hours and dreamt that NM and Keyser had been arguing for 5 hours. Woke up and guess what 🙂 🙂

    Chambers signed, Ospina signed, more rumours about Carvalho and Schniederlin . Huzzah !

    Feel for Jenks. Got a real soft spot for him and seems a really nice lad. At the moment not up to it bless him. Wonder when Debuchy signed he thought as much as I love the club I’m not going to play and has had a chat to Wenger about it. For his career be good move to get regular game time? He scored his goal. Once a gooner always a gooner. Boy will he get a great reception when he comes back 🙂 🙂

    Ah well back to sleep dreaming about Keysers style of play vs NM’s tactics. Happy days 🙂

  16. jwl

    I wonder what’s going on at Arsenal this summer. Has Gazidis told wenger to buy players? Has wenger decided to spend money on his own? I didn’t expect club to buy 2 right backs this summer, I would like to see more of this type of behaviour. Sad to see Jenks go, tho. I thought he was decent player when he was given a chance a while back but its not to be, I guess.

    Debuchy mentors Chambers for a few season, that’s perfect. Wenger should do more of that if he could. Wenger also buying a british player, I wonder if wenger is trying to give us more brit core/identity.

  17. ricky

    “@GuiIIemBaIague: Atletico’s RB Javier Manquillo says he’s chosen Liverpool ahead of Arsenal, because he is “not ready to play for a big club yet.” #AFC #LFC”

  18. Alexanderhenry

    Looks like we’re signing callum chambers ; a defender, which illustrates
    how little the author of this blog actually knows about arsenal. The club has entered a new phase financially, and they’ll be more signings before the window closes. As I’ve said before, let’s see what wenger can do with a bit of money.

  19. andy1886

    Cue all the posters who laughed at £27m for Shaw an England International who will of course be back on to do the same at £16m for an England U19 with only 25 first team appearances for the Saints.

    Or not. Double standards? Or is it just that a gamble by Utd/City/Chavs/Pool is ludicrous but the same by Wenger is a wise and justified investment?

    For the record I don’t have a problem with either fee, but them maybe I’m not as blinkered as some 😉

  20. Dan Ahern

    CA — It’s ridiculous isn’t it? Makes you wonder what their objective is. I understand clearing debts but they’re selling off their whole team. Even if you reinvest I don’t see the point. They were on an upward trajectory. Who can they realistically attract who will bed in and keep the club’s momentum?

  21. Marc

    Southampton are taking a huge risk, if they cock up bringing in / through new players they could get relegated which will cost them far more than the money they have brought in.

  22. choy

    Morning folks! Blimey.. 2 right backs in one window .. geez… Wenger has finally woken up! This one slipped right under the radar.

  23. Emiratesstroller

    Chambers may be at 19 a player for future, but was a second string RB a priority? Jenkinson may not be the world’s best player, but as second string adequate and
    is he better than Bellerin as long term prospect?

    It does not solve the two crashing priorities in team, which are DM and squad
    CB if Vermaelen leaves.

  24. grooveydaddy

    good versatile defender. we needed player like this – can play across the back 4 and even DM at a pinch.

    a bit too ‘long-termy’ to be a direct replacement for TV methinks…

    Ideally we get a proper CB when TV leaves.

    and a DM…

  25. goonpharm

    Chambers and Ospina in the bag. Add them to Debuchy and Sanchez and that’s four fucking signings in one window. If Wenger signs anymore my head will fucking explode.

    What the fuck is going on? Part of me is loving it but part of me is worried who’s going to get sold to fund all this. Every action has a consequence with Wenger and I smell a rat….

  26. The Poldi Prince

    My faith is partially restored. If we get a cdm I might even become an AKB..

    Would still love one more massive signing. Pogba would make my pants tighten around the groin considerably.

  27. bishop

    Am sure a lot of people herre who slept early last night will be so surprised to hear about this chambers deal..news came out of nowhere around 10pm. Even Orstein am sure didn’t have a clue till it was done

  28. travis

    shows you how demented the manager is we have 3 or 4 right backs and not a decent cdm, and the manager wants a midget to cover in the front of the back 4, go check the dictionary and look for the word SENILE, you might see a pic of Wenger

  29. travis

    I will save you the trouble
    (of a person) having or showing the weaknesses or diseases of old age, especially a loss of mental faculties

  30. wengers gigolo

    Some people are so negative on here get a life some of you ! Most of you i enjoy reading your comments. Wenger cant win he spends you moan he doesnt you moan !! Sorry peeps rant over!! 🙂

  31. travis

    Maybe shipping 17 goals in 3 games might be playing on the old goats mind, and defense might be a priority after all, We got Wos, Os as the keepers, and maybe Cas is coming, are you allowed to play 3 in goal

  32. travis

    Who said Wenger spent, AFC spent, there is no proof Wenger signed Sanchez or Debuchy, he might have signed two kids for nothing, that’s more likely

  33. Moray

    Happy to hear we seem to be upgrading Jenko, though I love the guy as a true gooner. I worry, however, that Wenger is pissing around with non core signings. He did this last summer with Ozil, probably the last position on the pitch we needed to strengthen.

    I just hope he is not neglecting the longstanding DM deficiency and the Vermaelen issue. I also think we should expect to sign a striker too. A foil to Giroud at the least. Someone with pace and some trickery. Just not sure Sanchez will be at his beat there…

  34. travis

    Where is the logic in letting Sagna go because he wanted a pay rise, then spending 20 million in transfer fees plus wages on 2 right backs, it beggars fucking belief, pay Bacary 130k a week, 6 million a year, I just saved the club 14 million quid, and never asked 8 million a year wages for the pleasure, if this manager is not certifiable, he is fucking close

  35. travis

    There is nothing wrong with spending money, it just needs to be spent in the right areas, Jenkinson, Debuchy, Chambers, Bellerin, that pretty much covers the right back, check out the central defenders, and deep lying cover for the back 4, striker might need looking at, but we have a manager oding on right backs, oh I forgot his brainwave play Jack as the cover for back 4, this has disaster written all over it

  36. N5

    Hey neiI shut up you miserable prick! sad case creating a new account after being banned just to keep spouting your shit that no one cares about.

  37. Roaaary

    Aaaaaand n.eil is back as travis.

    Also what the hell. Are we the only club who keep transfers so secret?!? This came out of nowhere. I love chambers as a player has real class about the way he plays. Touché arsene

  38. Jeff

    The problem is though that 3 out of the 4 signings so far are replacements for outgoings. Debuchy for Sagna, Chambers for Vermaelen (I think), Ospina for Fabianski. So our only truly new addition is Sanchez. We will need a bit more on the attacking side. If Giroud leads the team out as our main striker again, we will struggle against the big sides and fourth will once again be our beck and call.

  39. Jeff


    That is true but it does not excuse Giroud’s terrible form in front of goal. There were still lots of chances and opportunities (some easy, some more difficult) that he should have buried and failed to do so. We definitely need better up front and I don’t think we can absolve him because of injuries to other players.

  40. Savage

    Jeff, I hear you, but I would say the following:

    – Sanchez will get plenty of shots
    – Between Theo/Ox I expect a lot of shots
    – Ramsey is now a serious goal threat
    – I expect Giroud to continue improving, same as Wenger has done with Ramsey and Theo (but sadly couldn’t do with Gervinho)
    – Overall I think will create a lot more chances now

    On a side note, this is ridiculous:

  41. Nasri's Mouth

    poor old Ne.il

    He tries hard. He typed and typed and typed, but his poor little man (he calls his cock Redknapp by the way) just wasn’t interested, it just lay there flaccid in his lap.

  42. Gregg

    Every signing any team makes is a replacement. That’s why we all name squads of 25.Is it a change in quality ? that’s the question.

    In fairness the Journo’s were all over the story of us getting Chambers from the end of last season. They’ll be a few ‘ we told you so’ stories printed in the coming days.

  43. Jeff


    Yes, I agree that we won’t have to rely solely on Giroud for goals – in fact it was mostly Ramsey that bailed us out in the early part of last season – and with Sanchez on side there will be more goals from other quarters. However, I would put us as serious title contenders with a top striker up front and Giroud as filler for the lesser games or rotation.

    I agree of course that our injury record is terrible and has been for a number of years. That also has to be addressed. It is no longer an “accident” or “bad luck” that we keep topping that particular league and I am hoping of course that we reduce our injuries and the time it takes players to come back by a significant margin in the coming season.

  44. Ashwin Gunner

    morning all

    So Chambers is in.. i wonder how none of the news papers caught this news up until his medical got completed. I wonder all the newspapers were busy publishing articles on RVG.. 😀

  45. Nasri's Mouth


    This is pure speculation, but until Debuchy Wenger has always gone for a more defensive RB and a more offensive LB.

    Chambers is more defensive than Aurier, and might be cover for CB too, so while Aurier is a good player, he’s just not what Wenger is looking for.

  46. Jeff


    Of course quality is the real issue. We have in the past gone for inferior replacements but I think that is showing signs of change with Ozil and Sanchez. The key is to have a 25-man squad comprising of your best 11 (A – team) and the rest as the (B – team). In our case our B team has traditionally been too poor to support the A team causing us to invariably come unstuck in the latter part of the season.

    One particular and most glaring area where we need parity between A and B is in our striker options. The situation is that Giroud belongs in the B team (just about) but plays in the A team because we have no other realistic option. We must correct that situation but I fear Wenger will hand the baton to Giroud once again with Sanogo as back up and that really just sickens me to the stomach.

  47. Ashwin Gunner

    N5 NM

    Ignore the chap.. some people are born to complain.. you cant do anything for them to stop… Even Sasha Grey will not be able to satisfy these people 😀 😀

  48. Ashwin Gunner

    ” Wenger will hand the baton to Giroud once again with Sanogo as back up and that really just sickens me to the stomach.”

    I feel we will not see too much of Giroud this season.. it might be between Giroud Sanchez and Campbell..

  49. ricky

    Think Mourinho has a point?

    Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho claims he pulled out of a bid to sign left-back Luke Shaw this summer because his wage demands would have “killed” the club.
    Shaw became the fourth-most expensive defender in history when Manchester United signed him earlier this month from Southampton for £27m.
    Mourinho says Shaw’s reported wages of around £100,000 a week were too large.
    “If we pay to a 19-year-old boy what we were being asked for, to sign Luke Shaw, we are dead,” said Mourinho.
    “We would have killed our stability with financial fair play and killed the stability in our dressing room, because when you pay that much to a 19-year-old kid – a good player, fantastic player – but when you pay that amount of money, the next day, we would have had players knocking on our door.
    “They would have been saying, ‘How is it possible I play 200 games for this club, won this and that, yet a 19-year-old comes here and gets more money than I get?”‘

  50. Ashwin Gunner

    “An attacking midfielder and a top striker along with a new manager with fresh ideas is what Arsenal need.”

    we dont need an attacking mid fielder.. we have lots of players in that place

  51. Nasri's Mouth

    @Ashwin Gunner

    I find him funny. You can just see him sitting there with his finger poised over the CAPSLOCK and saying “not yet, not yet”

  52. Jeff


    I thought Campbell was being shipped off elsewhere again. Has there been a development in that area that I missed?

  53. Max85

    Seems like there are a few high profile loan deals being mooted with the big clubs to circumvent FFP.

    Aurier > PSG
    Di Maria > PSG
    Falcao > Real Madrid (allegedly)

    Cavani > Arsenal?

    I’m harbouring a secret hope!

  54. Rich

    Apparently City are close to signing Mangala but are having troubles closing due to third party ownership, maybe we’re waiting on allowing Vermaelen to leave until we can wrap up Nastasic?

  55. Savage

    I’m guessing that Chambers is doubling as our 2nd right back and 4th central defender, with Bellerin and Miquel coming in if we really get into trouble. That seems decent to me.

    Re Aurier, if it was a money issue, the Chambers signing changes that, so it’s a player issue then.

  56. Nasri's Mouth

    Ashwin gunner: we dont need an attacking mid fielder.. we have lots of players in that place

    cough cough

    “Ignore the chap.. some people are born to complain.. you cant do anything for them to stop… Even Sasha Grey will not be able to satisfy these people 😀 :D”

  57. Jeff


    If we’re not getting a top striker, I’m more than happy for Campbell to be given a go. I was quite impressed with his world cup performance overall.

  58. Bamford13

    ESPN transfer talk has:
    – Di Maria possibly to United or to stay at Madrid if PSG deal falls through
    – Barcelona interested in Vermaelen
    – Southampton telling Tottenham that Schneiderlin will cost £27m

  59. Savage

    I was wrong, hands up, on the Southampton situation. I couldn’t see them selling more than 2 or 3. Going on Koeman’s latest quote, it seems Schneiderlin is up for grabs too.

  60. Ashwin Gunner


    Campbell is surely a talent. whether Wenger utilizes it is another question. but i would like him to play atleast for one season before deciding on selling him.. He has all the qualitites to be a good striker. but still raw.. so he might need some game time to mature..

    According to news yesterday, AC Milan want Campbell + cash for Baletolli. If it were upto me, I would give them Giroud + Cash 🙂

  61. wenker-wanger

    Maybe a team stuffed with quality can win the prem despite the obvious tactical ineptitude of the manager, heres hoping!

  62. Gregg

    Southampton fans must be feeling quite demoralised right now. That said rumour has it that they have another set of quality young players bubbling under the surface, ready to make step up. Their youth set up has got something really special going on there.

  63. Jeff


    Absolutely. I would prefer Campbell over Giroud if it were a choice between just those two. However, I don’t know if Balotelli’s lack of professionalism will let the team down. He comes with a lot of talent no doubt but also a huge ego and a chip on his shoulder. He’s a risky player to take on.

  64. Savage

    From Goal.com:

    “The £16 million deal set to take Calum Chambers from Southampton to Arsenal will make him the eighth most expensive teenager in the history of football.”

  65. Savage

    For me, Campbell’s number one problem is lack of height, if playing up front. The same can be said of Sanchez, but clearly the latter is a bigger prospect.

  66. Gregg


    I’d like to see him given a try out to be honest. There were flashes of talent in a somewhat negative Costa Rican side. Playing with technically more gifted players might/should make him a better player. He’s better than Andros Townsend !

  67. Nasri's Mouth


    I was driving yesterday and there was a Saints fan on the radio who was amazingly chipper.

    People on twitter are feeling sorry for them, but they’ll be fine. They’ll buy in 2-3 more players and promote from within.

  68. Jeff


    My biggest desire for this season is to move away from the accusation of being flat track bullies and start beating the big teams – at least when we play them at home. It should no longer be a foregone conclusion that we should lose against the likes of Chelsea, Man U and City. We must be able to give them a game and not get embarrassed.

  69. Nasri's Mouth


    Flashes of talent, but most of the time he looked out of his depth.

    People got carried away with his goal, but other than that he did very little.

    Scored a great goal against ManU which people always pick up on but anyone who goes on about that needs to watch it again, and see how much time and space he was given. Wont get that playing up front for us week in week out.

    The hype around him is actually similar to Townsend, because both are exciting players to watch, but the reality is that there simply isn’t enough end product. Townsend isn’t very good at all. Amazing that people who are apparently experts think he is.

  70. qna

    @Gregg: Southampton fans must be feeling quite demoralised right now.

    Yeah, we know how the feel over the last 9 years we had been doing the same. Hopefully they come out of it like we did. There is something very right about Southamption, the best English talent producing factory there is. I do feel they should have a bit of Dortmund about them and refuse to let all the talent drain at once. I really hope they dont get caught up in a relegation fight over this.

    I am surprised about Chambers. I thought Hector Bellarin was going to be our next big thing. Hopefully Chambers sees the end of Jenks Arsenal career.

  71. Gregg


    True about the initial Campbell hype. I heard a guy on a phone in the other day saying how England missed Lennon and Townsend at the world cup. For real !

  72. Savage

    So our gross spend is supposedly at 66 million so far, depending on who you read. If we spunk 15-30 on a DM, we’ll have blown our record to pieces.

  73. Gunned Puma

    Current senior striking options 14/15
    On ball – Campbell > Giroud > Sanogo
    Passing – Campbell > Giroud > Sanogo
    Shoot – Campbell > Giroud > Sanogo
    Strength – Giroud = Sanogo > Campbell
    Linkup – Giroud > Campbell = Sanogo
    Off ball – Giroud > Sanogo > Campbell

    Age – Giroud (28), Cambell (22) > Sanogo (22)

  74. qna

    Gunned. Campbell hasnt been tested in the premier league. I think Giroud could have gone to Greece and bossed more than 8 goals in a season. IMO Giroud was also better than Campbell in the WC – both had one very good game and one ok game. Look at Mitrioglou who came out of greece with bags of goals but hasnt made it in EPL yet.

    Lets give Campbell a chance sure. But he hasnt earnt a comparison with Giroud yet. I dont rate Giroud as a top CF that a club like Arsenal deserves. However, I do give Giroud credit for squeezing absolutely every bit of talent he has out of himself and holding his own in the toughest league in the world. Lot of people bag Giroud, but if he was our second striker banging in 15 goals a year, we would ALL be joining the love-in. Imagine if we were getting 15 goals out of Podolski and 25 out of Giroud. Thats the potential we have with a Cavani-Giroud striker pair. Campbell is never going to be in that class.

  75. kwik fit


    PSG will be offloading to make some room in their squad. His value as fallen and wenger has expressed an interest previously , so who knows.

  76. Savage

    Re Campbell, I think that having young and unknown talent coming through is part of the Arsenal psyche. It’s just a question of having your bases covered if they don’t make it. I think we can manage on Giroud/Sanchez/Theo/Podolski/Sanogo/Campbell, but who would turn down a Falcao type signing? (Wenger maybe!)