Young gun signs – Carvalho looking more likely

by .


Dan Crowley signed a new contract. Can I get a wooooo!? Yeah I can, go on, do it at your desk and inexplicably point to god.

Go on… did you do it?

Nice work.

He’s the next super talent coming through the ranks. He reminds me of Jack at that age, exciting, well ahead of his age group with a low centre of gravity (short). He could do well. However, he should learn the rules of being an exciting young talent… knuckle down, work hard, keep your nose clean (metaphorically and literally) and be patient.

Ignore the beach babes, speedos and volleyball until you’re at least 63.

Great news for the clubs production line. Well, great news to our scouting network who pinched him from Villa. I feel far more confident Joncker is looking after his progress.

The Mirror have run with an odd story about Thomas Vermaelen snubbing Arsene Wenger’s offer of a new deal. Really struggling to come to terms with this story. Firstly, Wenger ostracised Vermaelen from the squad last year in he same way he did Bendtner. Instead of rotating him with his two core centre backs he shut him out. Thomas visibly looked disinterested and why wouldn’t he? He had no way in even when Per and Laurent were shattered. Wenger ran Laurent into the ground rather than rotate with a player who is more than capable of being good enough to become our captain in the first place.

In April he let the club know he wanted out. He went to the World Cup, picked up an injury, now we can’t sell him despite interest from Barca and United. Well, he might go, but the injury is hampering things. So now we’re faced with keeping him, so Wenger wants him to sign a new deal so we can get a fee for him next year?

You can see why that wouldn’t go down a dream!

Stories are hitting the web that Carvahlo is more likely than Khedira. Good in my view. We need attributes and fitness. Not sure what the benefit is of signing someone who is 27, injury prone, massively expensive and not quite what we need. I’ve heard great things about Carvahlo, really feel he could make a massive impact on our squad and fill a troublesome gap.

Giroud is excusing his performance on Sunday by stating he’d barely trained. You can’t knock that as an excuse. It’s a fair one. Players won’t get fit properly until at least a month into the season anyway, so I’m not concerned. My main concern is we don’t have he quality up front we need. People meme that Giroud scored more than Rooney over the last two seasons… well, I don’t want Rooney either. That said, he’s a better player for sure. I think the simple fact is, as our squad currently stands, Giroud doesn’t have to worry.

Well, he does, I think Sanchez will play through the middle.

Really feel Mario would be amazing. He’s the best option out there for us. One crazy guy in a squad that boasts very little ego shouldn’t be a problem. Really, I truly believe that every work place deserves a really selfish person of immense talent.

In other news, Usmanov is claiming Arsene Wenger is a genius and now the trophies begin.

Deary me, just what we need. A gee up from Alisher.

I really hope Arsene is a genius. I really hope he does smash it out the park. However, despite all the changes, I still think he’ll come up short at some point. But hey, we’ll see, I’m totally up for Arsene proving me wrong with a Champions League / Premiership double. My concern is that you see coaches like LVG taking innovative approaches to games and I just don’t feel Arsene has that in him these days… nor do I feel many behind have the guts to suggest such approaches.

Just me though. Could be totally wrong. But if I am, that’ll mean Wenger changing massive chunks of his personality and approach.

I’m just being a realist here people, just being real. Street. Whatever you want to call it.

Right, quick one today as I have much work to be cracking on with…

845 Responses to “Young gun signs – Carvalho looking more likely”

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  1. southernpeople


    Media always running stories that say something negative about Arsenal. They’re trying to make it look like we’re desperate to keep Verm!

    We don’t need Verm, he was fantastic when young, ambitious and injury free but now he became injury prone and panic station whenever he plays.

    We can get rid of him for around a £10m and get a massive defender with that money + what we got from Giroud and Vela. That would be real business, wouldn’t it?

  2. Nasri's Mouth

    Pedro:Firstly, Wenger ostracised Vermaelen from the squad last year in he same way he did Bendtner. Instead of rotating him with his two core centre backs he shut him out

    Don’t agree with this at all. He was dropped (not ostracised), simply because he wasn’t good enough compared to Per and Kos.

    He wants 1st team football, he’s not good enough for it at Arsenal.

  3. Pedro

    Nasri’s Mouth, ostracised. He was part of the squad, the captain and he wasn’t played in favour of totally fatiguing a defender until he picked up and injury.

    Bad management.

  4. Pedro

    Southern people, according to a journo I know (twitter ‘know’)

    We’re after a beast midfielder… he looks like the one.

  5. freddylekgunner

    Nice post
    Well I have my differences with Arsene, but the man surely is a genius. Maybe a stubborn one.

  6. Arsenal4eva

    “Firstly, Wenger ostracised Vermaelen from the squad last year in he same way he did Bendtner. Instead of rotating him with his two core centre backs he shut him out. ”

    Completely disagree. You cannot rotate centre backs and still expect to have the same sturdy defense. Part of the problem for Arsenal over the years was their CB pairings were always injured. Due to this our defense was always vulnerable. Yes, Arsenal did maintain a high line over the years which may have cost them dear, but overall I felt there was no understanding between the CB’s which is why the defense was so vulnerable. Per and Kos have this cryptic understanding between each other and they were no doubt the best option. Also when can you rotate CB’s? I mean every match is important. May be in a cup game? Even that was important because of the lack of trophies. I think Vermaelen is a liability and was rightly not played. Whenever he got an extended run he always had a mistake in him. Michael Cox had highlighted his positional deficiency a while back. Also, all good CB pairings were never rotated. Campbell/Toure, Vidic/Ferdinand,Carvalho/Gallas….

  7. Romford Pele

    Hopefully the Carvalho rumours come to fruition. Beast of a midfielder who is incredibly strong and is great at interception and initiating attacks from deep. Great positionally too. Only real worry is that he’s not the quickest.

    Managed to catch highlights of the weekend’s games. Incredibly impressed by Bellerin. Chambers is a very good prospect. Don’t really wanna see him anywhere else bar CB. Looks very composed on the ball. All this means it’s pretty much curtains for Jenkinson.

    Kondogbia is one i’ve also championed. Guarantee he’ll break into the French squad very soon, following Pogba’s footsteps. Him and Paul smashed up the U20s a few seasons back. The new French generation is definitely one to watch out for.

  8. freddylekgunner

    Its sad to see the Verminator depreciate so much within a season and a half. I’ll more comfortable with Chambers in CB than Vermaelen

  9. Romford Pele

    Yeah NM, I know Wenger rates him highly. Us and Madrid were linked with him last summer when he was leaving Sevilla. Reckon we could definitely get him if we wanted him. He ate Arteta and Wilshere alive on Sunday. Very cultured left-footed DM. 6ft, covers copious amounts of ground. We’ll see though but him and Carvalho would be my shouts. Not overly big on Khedira personally.

  10. Pedro

    You can’t rotate centre backs… what a view to have.

    So the alternative, you run them into the ground.

    Not sure that works for me.

  11. Tony

    Vermaelen can go if he wants. Gone are the days that players will hold the Arsenal at ransom. We’re a big club once again attractive to the best of players, so let him go

  12. Bergkamplegend

    “I’m totally up for Arsene proving me wrong with a Champions League / Premiership double”

    A 2nd PL place and the double FA Cup/Carling Cup would be enough for me. lol

  13. Bergkamplegend

    “Sanogo fit for the Community Shield apparently”

    Another quadruple against city ?? “I buy that for a dollar”!! lol

  14. Nasri's Mouth

    RP: Not overly big on Khedira personally.

    Me neither. A lot of people are crying out for him, but I don’t think they quite understand his role.

  15. peanuts&monkeys

    Why can’t CBs be rotated?

    And, how can his positional deficiency creep in after 3 seasons at the same club playing in the same position?

    Well, we can agree he is not as good as Per/Kos, but how can he be so bad that in spite he being the captain he doesn’t get a role in central defence. If he is so bad or deteriorating, then why make him the captain? It is indeed Wenger’s bad management, and he has to accept it.

  16. Savage

    I also disagree with the idea that Kos/Mert were ran into the ground. CB and Keeper are the positions where you really can play the whole season. Why fix it if it ain’t broke?

    I do agree with the idea of rotation, but CB is not a priority rotation area. CB is not about fitness as much as about understanding and communication.

  17. DAVEY

    I see Myles thinks Sami boy is coming at the end of the month, I want big willy much more of a d/m specialist, young

    and no history of injuries.

  18. Romford Pele

    CBs are unlikely to be rotated as other areas on the pitch but they still need a breather every now and then. Can’t have Kos/Mert playing in every game. We’re in 4 competitions. Verm (new back-up CB) and Chambers can play in CC games, FA Cup games and home against against lower opposition. To say that Mert Kos should play every game is stupid and silly tbh.

  19. Romford Pele

    “There’s no reason why 150K/week can hold a club like Arsenal’s cash and debt position.”

    Making Khedira out highest paid player? I’m not sure about that. He’s on 50k a week atm, that’s an astronomical pay rise. Decent player, sure. And as it’s probably his last big contract, I can see why he wants so much money. But at the same time I can see why the board would be reluctant to offer a massive deal to someone who is nearly 28 and has injury concerns. Carvalho is safer money and a better investment IMO. As is Kondogbia.

  20. Igbo Amadi-Obi

    Surprisingly early post. I just took a chance and there it was. I do not have any issues with Vermalaen being kept out, dropped, ostracized or quarantined. We know what happened, so it is only a matter of choice of words. I associate him with defensive frailty and inconsistency. One moment we accuse Wenger of not being ruthless enough, the next we blame him for trying. I think Wenger has made it as clear as he ever would that Vermaelen is leaving. I don’t believe whatever injury he copped at the World Cup is long-term. And we do not need to buy a direct replacement. A flexible DM who can double as a CD will do. That way, he doesn’t feel left out waiting for Kos or Per to get injured. Cavalho or Khedira fit. We already have Chambers and Ignatius who can both do the domestic cups and get drafted in for Premiership experience now and again. So, we ship Vermaelen, get a flexible DM, and we are about done with transfer business with weeks left in the window! And please let’s rest this matter of Balloteli. Other than the occasional goal (he didn’t score many for City and Milan, by the way), he’s going to disrupt and distract – cards and tantrums on the pitch, bust-ups in training, god-knows-what at home and in the streets. It would kill me to see a picture of him attempting to strangle Wenger in training like he did Mancini.

  21. Wallace

    Ferguson never rotated Bruce & Pallister. it’s the one area of the team where if you hit upon the right combo you just leave it alone. and plus, it’s nowhere near as demanding physically as some other positions.

  22. Gregg

    Ostracised ?

    This is hilarious. He wasn’t available for selection for huge chunks of the season. How can you rotate with a guy that wasn’t selectable ? beggars belief

  23. Nasri's Mouth

    CBs shouldn’t be ‘rotated’ hey can occasionally be dropped for odd games, but it makes good sense to have a first choice pairing, and unfortunately Vermaelen isn’t in ours.

    He did play the equivalent of 14 full games (according to transfermarkt) last season despite his various injuries so its not as though he’s getting no play at all, he simply isn’t first choice and that’s why he wants to leave.

  24. DAVEY

    As far as I know Khedira is an all action box to box player (when fit) but with all our attacking players Calvaho is a much better

    fit and maybe we wont get our pants pulled down at Anfield/Etihad/Bridge

  25. southernpeople

    Chambers for defensive mid. He should be much better than Arteta. We need british core in the mid and with Him, Ramsey, Wilshare and Chambo1 we could have that.

  26. Bergkamplegend

    “Arsenal remain keen on Sporting Lisbon midfielder William Carvalho but Arsene Wenger is reluctant to spend £37m to exercise his buy-out clause.”

    YES!! The REAL arsène is back!! lol

  27. Nasri's Mouth


    Big shout given you’ve never seen him play there, and what advantage does it give us if they’re all British ?

  28. Bergkamplegend

    Gregg : he don’t want to discuss about a new contract, so fuck him!!

    He will fit perfectly in MU or Barcelona’s physio rooms

  29. Nasri's Mouth


    If our interest in Carvalho is serious, then we’re right to bargain with them.

    £37m is too much. They need the cash. The player is on a low wage. We have another option.

  30. Gregg

    Bergkamp legend

    I don’t want to offer him a new contract. He was out for over 15 weeks last year. In fact on the rare occasions he was available for selection he got decent game time.

    Basically Pedro is way off the mark on this one because when he was available to be used, he was used.

  31. Bergkamplegend

    “I don’t want to offer him a new contract. ”

    Agree with you Gregg, It’s better to keep the money for a smarter move.

  32. Emiratesstroller


    I do think that Arsenal will be challenging for League Title, but then so
    will Man City and Chelsea. Man Utd will come into the frame this season of competing with Liverpool for a top 4 finish.

    Europe is a different matter because I think that the two major players in Spain have the advantage of playing in weaker and less physically demanding leagues. That is also the case with Bayern.

    I am interested about your assessment with Vermaelen. If the current
    injury prevents completion of the transfer at this stage of window then
    it would be best to hold onto him next season even if there is the potential loss of a transfer fee. I see absolutely no point going to the ‘wire’
    with recruitment of a centre back when we have at moment just 6 other defenders on our books.

    Yes we might lose the £10 million fee, but realistically if we are delaying buying a replacement, because of this it would be best to keep the
    devil you know than land up at end of window with limited choice of
    options and buying just for sake of it.

    I sense that Arsenal are possibly moving in the direction of Carvalho rather than Khedira. He is younger and less injury prone. Also he has
    more versality since he can play in both midfield and defence. That
    seems increasingly the trend as we see with both Chambers and Sanchez.

    I watched yesterday a Video of Carvalho and he is clearly a very athletic and composed young player as well as being a good passer of the ball. That is precisely what you want in the holding position.

    None of the current crop of players at club offer that. Arteta is a very
    intelligent footballer, but lacks physicality and pace. Flamini has the
    physicality, but lacks pace and is reckless and Wilshire in my view has
    skill but lacks physicality,pace and discipline.

    I would hope that the move is completed by the weekend so that he
    cannot train with the club before the season starts.

    I am less concerned about innovation than about competence and decision making when it come to good management. This has been a concern about Wenger in recent times.

  33. Arsene's Vet

    Really surprised at people picking on Pedders for suggesting Wenger could have rotated our central better. Of course he could have. And who says Central defenders are not to ne rotated. Last year Chelsea had one od the best defences in England and Europe, if not the best. And guess what? I’ve never seen central defenders being rotated like theirs.

  34. Leedsgunner

    You can rotate CBs but ideally you need to rotate them as a pair when you play in a system with four in the back. The reason why Mert and Kos worked together so well is because they covered for each other’s weaknesses. However you’re only going to do that if you are used to playing together. Part of the problem for TV5 last year was that he didn’t have a regular playing partner… but he was just fitting in. Ideally you would have 4 CBs who are comfortable interchanging with each other but in recent years we’ve lack the decent squad depth to implement this.

  35. Wallace

    Arsene’s Vet

    but Terry’s at an age where he has to be managed carefully now. i don’t recall Mourinho rotating him & Carvalho much back in his first stint at the club.

  36. Gregg

    Arsenes Vet

    No-ones picking on him.

    Rotation is good but you need to have someone you can rotate with. Vermaelen was rarely available for selection due to his ‘Diabyesque’ Injury record. Why is this point constantly overlooked when discussing this subject. It’s beyond me.

  37. southernpeople


    “Big shout given you’ve never seen him play there, and what advantage does it give us if they’re all British ?”

    “Fighting Spirit”, they say!!

    I have seen him play central defender but the way he goes on about his game looks like he’s going to better than Arteta.

    He’s quick, has pass accuracy, highly disciplined for a teenager, better tackling and calmness and confidence beyond his age.

    I am not saying he’s better than Carvalho, Khedira et al. but he could be improvement on Art.

  38. Romford Pele

    “What happened to lars bender link??”

    He said he wasn’t leaving. He’s the Leverkeusen captain and signed a new contract last season which now goes until 2019. That was the end of that.

  39. Nasri's Mouth

    @Arsene’s Vet

    Last season Cahill and Terry played 5684 minutes together in the PL vs 5889 for Koscielny and Mertesacker.

    That’s about 1 game extra each over the entire season.

    And you’re telling me you’ve never seen rotation like it?

  40. Alfie

    “Arsene’s Vet August 5, 2014 08:48:11
    Really surprised at people picking on Pedders………….”

    What are you, five years old?

  41. Emiratesstroller

    I think that the ‘rotation’ argument is a red herring. Arsenal played for years the same back row without rotation unless it was absolutely necessary.

    The real debate when it comes to Vermaelen is not should he have played more last season but why would he want to leave and go to Barcelona or Man Utd where his prospects of playing regularly in first team would be no better than here.

    Clearly there is more to this story than meets the eye.

  42. Ashwin Gunner

    Hey Pedro

    Nice post.

    I too hope Wenger changes his tactics and has a better game plan. Lets see what he does. He has definitely eased off some pressure on his back with early signings. but how he uses these signings to win a trophy is to be seen.

    and FFS stop saying RVG is genius. Let him prove it. you start to sound like Daily Mail to me..

  43. Gregg


    We have but we’ve had Diaby longer.

    Last seasons stats for TV5:
    89 days out with back injury

    53 days out with Knee Injury

    28 days out with another knee injury

    8 days out with a hamstring injury

    That my friends is the reason he didn’t play more than 14or so times last year.

  44. Alfie

    “captain pigeon August 5, 2014 09:01:42
    Sorry im not up to speed im a full time carer to my wife so not on much .”

    Ummmmmm……. That’s ok?!

  45. El Patron

    I never understand people.

    No one in here would pay £10 for a banana that’s worth 50p or pay 20k for a 5k car.

    So why on earth is it such a big deal when Arsenal decide the price quoted for a player is too much and they decide to haggle?

    Aren’t the English natural born hagglers?

    I guess its OK to spend over and above when its not your money.

    I understand we the fans want good players and we want trophies for the club but to be extorted is not pragmatic or economical. I’m just trying to see it from the business side and understand where Arsenal are coming from.

    I think they are right to tell clubs to fck off with their over priced players.

    I would never pay 35 mil for Andy Carroll or 30 for Luke Shaw etc. I even think 42mil for Ozil was too much but that’s just me. I’m happy you fans got what you wanted.

  46. Radio Raheem

    Until last weekend I’m sure many people on here hadn’t seen Chambers play CB. Turns that’s his second or third position haven’t learned his trade as a holding/central midfielder. If he can do so well as a CB I wouldn’t rule him out of playing in central midfield, especially if Wenger thinks he is good enough.

  47. Emiratesstroller

    For clarification our defence when Wenger first arrived was Winterburn,Adams, Bould/Keown, Dixon who were playing at time in mid 30s. Noone would argue about rotation when they played.

    What they offered was ‘understanding’ , ‘positional sense’ and ‘discipline’. Keown made the point on Sunday that you stick to the combination which works best. Its not about who is the better individual centre back.

    Where I did not agree with him was the idea that Chambers should be third
    choice centre back without fall back. Chambers is a very talented boy but he
    has no EPL experience as a CB. It is too great a risk going into next season with
    no back up.

  48. goonpharm

    Morning all.

    Don’t think the vermalen thing was anything personal. Way I see it is we finally got a sound CB paring for the first time in years and Wenger was reluctant to break it up unless he absolutely had too.

    Same as over playing Ramsey when he’s in the form of his career. We are hardly blessed with stockpiles of world class talent so we need capitalise on the purple patches.

    Vermalen was essentially our back up CB – let’s ignore the fallacy of giving him the armband as that clouds the issue. His job was to remain professional and do the job when called on. He failed as he was puss poor when called on.

    That’s it. There’s no ulterior motive from Wenger and there’s no story. Just a player who’s regressed and got worse physically.

  49. Nasri's Mouth

    andy1886: Adams, Keown, Bould – can’t rotate CB’s? Lol. You can if they’re good enough.

    Dunno whether they’d have been rotated as much had injuries not played a part though

  50. captain pigeon

    My wifes an arsenal fan but dont go anymore her problems stop her going is this carvalho deal happening or a smokescreen for khedira??

  51. Arsene's Vet

    Alfie. Funny you, I’m actually (5×7)+ if you care to know. However I believe if Ur brain has power to comprehend more than one-liners you will understand my point actually started from where Ur quote ended.

  52. Doyindav

    David Luiz didn’t get a look in at CB for Chelsea last year.
    Casillas at Madrid.
    And a host of other players.

    CB and GK are positions with limited rotation ( I agree you should rotate though).

    But what’s the max games Verm could have gotten if Wenger rotated. Maybe 5 more games?

    He made some errors, wasnt good enough again and lost his place.

    He’s club captain and he isn’t first choice, that’s why he wants to leave.

  53. Emiratesstroller

    Nari’s Mouth

    There was never an issue of rotation with defence under George Graham or
    Arsene. We put out our best defence unless there was a reason not to do so.

    Wenger has said as much last season and Keown confirmed it that Mertesacker and Koscielny play well together.

    My concern about Vermaelen at moment is that he does not seem to be displaying a very ‘professional’ attitude to the situation rather than fighting for
    his place and demonstrating to the manager that he is ‘irreplaceable’.

  54. franck

    Vermaelen has never been our best defender,i can recall the squillach,djourou,vermaelen era,we were terrible at the back,worse wen wenger played vermaelen/squillachi which he did more often.squillachi was the scape goat,he wasnt really that bad,if u remember each time he played with djourou he looked decent.vermaelen is not as good as people claim he is,if he was he would not loose his place in the team to a laurent koscielney who has played 5 seasons of top fligth football.incase any of u doubts my observations regardin the kos/squillaci partnership u can always get tapes for review.

  55. Romford Pele

    Yeah TV5 needs to display more really. In the 2012/13 season, Kos spent a lot of the season on the bench – waited his turn and hasn’t relinquished the spot since then. It was a straight fight for the shirt between him and Vermaelen which he won pretty easily tbh.

    I’m actually interested to see how the Szcz/Ospina tussle plays out. Szcz I rate really highly but feel like he needs a massive kick up the backside every now and then. This will be a straight fight. Wenger will choose the one who plays better.

  56. london gunner

    If you look at Verms history as a player he really was an amazing talent/prospect back in the day.. He was captain of a good ajax side… he was destined for great things or so it seemed.

    Then Koz came along from lowly league 2… no one cared much or thought he would be as good as he has become.

    He managed to slowly usurp Verms place when it became clear they couldn’t play together and that we desperately needed hight so Mert us be played.

    Ironically though Koz rise was hardly a smooth one along the way his made some calamitous mistakes from own goals to red cards just those moments of madness have been less frequent compared to Verm consistent inadequacies.

    I think though was killed of Verms career at Arsenal was what happened off the pitch I think he showed Wenger he didn’t really have the fight/desire to challenge koz

    I think what ever was happening on the training field dissuaded Wenger further

  57. Dream10

    Carvalho would be nice. But it seems Wenger wants Khedira. Problem is we will likely wait to the last week of August and that he will miss a couple of PL matches and the Champions League qualifier. There is an int’l break in early September as well.

    This means that he may not make his debut until the middle of September

  58. Gregg

    My concern about Vermaelen is that he is still out with a Hamstring injury several weeks after sustaining it. My other concern is that he doesn’t have a rat in hell’s chance of ever passing a medical for another club.

  59. Romford Pele

    Plus TV5 is best friend’s with RVP and shares the same agent.

    Vermaelen has never really done it for me anyway. His early goals blighted the fact that he generally isn’t that good at defening.

  60. Al

    The sooner Vermaelen leaves the better. Its so apparent he doesn’t want to be here and has felt like that since his boy left the club

  61. Alfie

    “Arsene’s Vet August 5, 2014 09:22:45
    Alfie. Funny you, I’m actually (5×7)+ if you care to know. However I believe if Ur brain has power to comprehend more than one-liners you will understand my point actually started from where Ur quote ended.”

    What in gods name are you talking about?!

  62. Alfie

    “captain pigeon August 5, 2014 09:22:02
    My wifes an arsenal fan but dont go anymore her problems stop her going is this carvalho deal happening or a smokescreen for khedira??”

    Why do you keep talking about your wife?

  63. The BearMan

    There is something about recent recruitments to the Arsenal squad which worries me a bit. First six months they look anxious to please as they dazzle us with the Ali shuffle, especially after scoring 1 or two goals. They are to us the next best thing to slice bread.

    Suddenly their sharpness level hits a dive and they appear very sluggish and comfortable, when those early skills are no more as they drift from hero to sorrow. What can fans do apart from pelting s..t to trigger a response?

    May I suggest that we adopt the song ‘Search for a hero inside yourself as our anthem’.

    Now don’t all call ‘ The Bear’ àa nutter all at once. But just image when Ozil, Giroud Carzola even Wilshere performances drop below 75%, the Gooner army shout “You better search for a hero inside your self”. What a message to cause them to go in search of an extra 35%.

  64. Dream10


    Yep. TV5 and RVP are good mates. Remember him being linked to Man Utd in 2011 before Robin.

    TV5 struggles to tackle on his right side. He has mental lapses as well. Costly ones. Remember Drogba scoring two at the Emirates. Believe he was ballwatching.

    His goals masked his defensive deficiencies. Feel the same about Vertonghen as well. Except Jan has the potential to be an elite DM. But remember he said no to that when AW wanted him.

  65. Romford Pele

    “Suddenly their sharpness level hits a dive and they appear very sluggish”

    It’s called the effects of a long season. Nobody is ever gonna be 100% all the time. Dips in form are natural for every footballer. That’s why you have a squad with players who can fill in/rotate.

  66. Al

    “Vermaelen has never really done it for me anyway. His early goals blighted the fact that he generally isn’t that good at defening.”

    Thats a myth man…in his first season for us he was a good defender and he defended well for us. Just seemed to regress in his defending ability and focus to much on the getting forward aspect aka glory part of the game.

  67. Romford Pele

    Yeah Dream, as Al just said, I don’t think TV5 wants to be here anymore. And if so, sell him. Don’t want anyone playing for my club who isn’t fully committed to the cause. I guess I feel for him to an extent, the turnover of players since he has been at the club has been huge. He’s seen a lot of his friends leave. That said, he’s been a dreadful captain. Like you say, he ball watches a lot, can get beaten for pace and isn’t exactly the strongest. Doesn’t seem to wanna compete for a place here so sell and buy a replacement.

  68. Romford Pele

    “in his first season for us he was a good defender and he defended well for us”

    Was he though? This dude used to get caught out time and time again. I guess his first season was decent but I’ve never seen him put in a performance like Kos did vs Barca in ’11 for example.

  69. N5

    Cheers Gregg. I knew he’d had issues, but I had no idea how many! You’ve surprised me.

    Patron, do you want to buy a banana for £15?

    Where is Midwest? has he given up on this site?

  70. Nasri's Mouth

    Completely understandable about TV5 wanting to leave. He wants 30-40 games a year, not 10-15.

    He’s not kicking off, going on strike, or bad mouthing the manager, or telling ‘Us guys’ how he feels. Can’t really fault him.

  71. Arsene's Vet

    NM. Does that surprise you? It doesn’t surprise me in the least. EPL is where you play your best, almost always. You’ll be shocked at what you’ll get when you compare David Luis minutes played compared to Vermaelen taking into consideration CC, FA cup and UCP. You are the stats man, hit me with your findings.

  72. The BearMan

    Romford Pete, I do agree. However, it appears some players performances remain at that lower level for the remainder of their contract. Arshavin certainly did!!

  73. Gregg


    That’s the thing that everyone is overlooking when discussing Vermaelen.

    It’s all very well wanting to play but if you’re in the physio room for 4 months a season, you cant moan about not being first choice.

    My opinion on vermaelen is that he was decent when he came. Forget the goals he scored, his strength was his ‘leap’ in the air and his recovery pace. In his second season his back went and his achiles. From that point on he lost his spring and what pace he did have. He has racked up injury after injury from that point. Last season he missed 168 days due to knee injuries and once again his back injury.

    Unfortunate as it is, he’s shot to pieces.

  74. Romford Pele

    TheBearMan – Motivation has to come from within, too. If you can’t gee yourself up, nobody else can help you. Arshavin turned into a walrus during his time here and that was solely down to him.

  75. Dream10

    Shame that Ezequiel Garay joined Zenit from Benfica. He had an excellent World Cup. Benatia had an excellent season last year as well. Ideal replacement for Mertesacker next year.

    Can see us ending up with Fabian Schaar from Basel. Young CB. Played well against Chelsea in the Champions League. Probably under 10m.

  76. Romford Pele

    Dream – Schar would be good. Surprised Hitzfield didn’t play him ahead of Djourou in the World Cup though.

    Benatia is awesome though I think Roma quoted City something like 50m euros and that was the end of that.

  77. Al

    “Was he though? This dude used to get caught out time and time again. I guess his first season was decent but I’ve never seen him put in a performance like Kos did vs Barca in ’11 for example.”

    Have to disagree there. First season he wasn’t getting constantly caught out, was very good defensively.
    Not sure if he has had a game like Kos.
    The difference is that Kos is a defender, the type that just loves to defend and come up against a battle. You see it with him and BFG when they get a clean sheet how excited they get and gee each other up.

  78. N5

    Gregg, it’s really odd how it seems to be getting overlooked. I honestly had no idea his injuries were as bad as they are. I knew he had problems, but as I say, I didn’t know the extent.

    I’m not sure how it’s been missed by so many, maybe it’s due to the rotation thing that people just don’t notice a CB when he’s out.

    From now on I’m going to call this the Luis effect! when something isn’t noticed for what it is, I.E. Luis sells for the price of a great player, when he is in fact…shite! Verm is slated for not playing many games, when he is in fact….injured.

    The Luis effect.

  79. Romford Pele

    “The difference is that Kos is a defender”

    So TV5 isn’t a defender, then? Explains a lot.

    Tbh i’m just not big on TV5. He has some attributes I like but it’s no hair off my back to lose him. Plenty of decent young defenders on the market. Ideally we get someone who can partner Chambers for years to come. Both Kos/Mert aren’t getting younger.

  80. london gunner

    Man United may very well win the league.

    They beat RM and Liverpool at a trot.

    They look like they have the winning mentality again they looked like a bunch of predators and they wont have champions league football to distract them cunts

  81. karim

    Vermaelen and Sczezny thought they were eternal starters
    look at them sulking when they re on the bench
    When Verm finally got out of detention he gave as many assits to RVP as he could
    No wonder they spent last holidays together

  82. Dream10

    Yep Romford. Benatia has great timing. Tall as well. Interested to see how that Jedvaj kid does at Leverkusen. Roma beat us to his signature and have loaned him out to the German club for the next two seasons with the option to buy.

    I am really excited to see Enner Valencia for West Ham. I think he will flourish in the Premier League. He’s quick and aggressive. In the Ian Wright mould. Hope he as the same appetite for goals. At least 15 for him in the league in this yr.

  83. Al

    Fazio would be a good signing for us. He could alternate with BFG due to his size whilst chambers could fill in as the 4th choice CB

  84. The BearMan

    Hence the reason for the suggested anthem.

    ” You got to search for an hero inside yourself”.

    I wonder if the words ‘you will never walk alone’ impacts the Liverpool players from time to time?

    This I do know good songs impact each of us at given time. My final comment on the matter. Thanks for sharing Romford Pete! I appreciate your feedback. Have a super day.

  85. Emiratesstroller

    Mertesacker v Koscielny v Vermaelen

    MERTESACKER Solid and dependable. Seldom gets injured or gets carded.
    Positions well with good read of game and plays alongside Koscielny and
    Right Back who compensate for his lack of pace.

    KOSCIELNY offers pace and defensively improved. Can be reckless on occasions, but generally relies on Mertesacker. Koscielny plays in left of centre
    position so that he can cover for defensive shortcomings of Gibbs and Monreal.

    VERMAELEN plays in left of centre position, which requires Koscielny to move when they play together. Is injury prone. Lacks pace of Koscielny and
    therefore does not play as well with Mertesacker. Also left side of defence becomes more vulnerable.

  86. Dream10


    Man Utd playing well. But if Hernandez is sold and RVP misses significant time, can they cope? You’d have to imagine that they will buy another forward this window and if not, definitely by January. But they can raise a lot of money by selling Kagawa,Hernandez,Fellaini,Zaha,Cleverly. Enough to spend till Aug 31st w/out touching the rest of their of budget till winter.

  87. Al

    “So TV5 isn’t a defender, then? Explains a lot.”

    You know what i mean. The type that LOVE to defend, the adams, keown, montero, terry, campbell, bruce, stam etc types.

    I agree though i thought he was a good defender just not the type i am really a fan of. Like my defenders to in the mold of those guys who just LOVE the art of defending

  88. Bergkamplegend

    “But they can raise a lot of money by selling Kagawa,Hernandez,Fellaini,Zaha,Cleverly.”

    Selling them… to us ?? lol

  89. Romford Pele

    “but generally relies on Mertesacker”

    No doubt Kos plays well with Mertesacker but he isn’t exactly reliant on him. Plays fine with Varane for France. If anything, it’s Mertesacker who needs him more so his hindrances can be hid. Kos can be rash at times, sure. But it’s the way he plays the game. The likes of Thiago Silva, Benatia, Varane etc are all the same. They have a very pro-active way of defending and try to nip in ahead of the attacker to steal the ball. When this works it’s fantastic but there are times when they can get turned or mistime their challenge, meaning they leave the defence exposed.

  90. The Poldi Prince

    Tv is criminally overrated. Spent more time in the attacking third and shipping goals than actually clamping down.

    last year’s defence was much better than recent defences. If we didnt choke in those few big games, we had a very miserly defence. And I dont put those smashings down to our poor defence that was overrun due to no midfield support and poor tactics.

    if we get 10mil for tv, bite their hands off and chase two young future cb options (preferably one able to play cdm and the other able to moolight as a left back at a stretch)..

  91. Dream10


    Don’t think he will give up on Jones. Smalling is the one we have a chance to get if AW chooses to do a swap deal.

  92. london gunner


    I don’t really see the issue with their strikers its the least of their issues to be honest.

    If RVP misses game time you have roony and vice versa if both are out injured Welbeck is a much better option than our third option and on about the same level as Chelsea’s third option aka Torres. Only one team that is City have the stronger option in the league.

    For me their most glaring weakness is the wingers… valancia and ashley young seriously lack quality. All they have is pace and they are very inefficient just smacking in shit crosses after shit crosses.

    Nani is just pure gash..

    They need wingers the best they have is a what 19 year old Belgium kid.

    As for the back four its hardly the greatest but I think with a great manager he can get average defenders playing as good defenders by just improving tactics and having them well drilled.

  93. Shubham

    Interesting discussion going on here. Verm for me is past his best. He needs to stay fit to get regular games. If he wants away, so be it. Let us move on and get someone who can be dependable.

  94. Gregg

    Man U are in a similar boat to us. They only have 3 CB’s. If they set up to play with a back 3 and wing backs, as seems the likelihood, then their need for additional CB’s is greater.

  95. london gunner

    The Poldi Prince

    Overrated? Who rates him for him to be overrated? Lol certainly not Wenger as his perma bench bound.

    Overrated for me is Kompany whose a player whose highly rated but makes quite a few mistakes and can lose his head in high pressure scenarios

  96. Ashwin Gunner

    how about a swap deal between Vermalean and Javier Hernandez … both of them are not wanted by their clubs. they are hungy and eager to prove they still have it in them.

    Javier Hernandez is a good striker. should be a very good addtion.

  97. Dream10


    Hernandez would be great for us.

    Read Atl madrid want kagawa and hernandez for 25m. Excellent deal

  98. N5

    @southernpeople, wages have gone so out of control. If you compare him to other players in the team, his 50k a week seems low. For example Oxlade is on £65k a week and love or hate Giroud, he does more for his money than Ox, currently.

    Monreal is on £50k, Flamini is on £65k, so he should be on more than these guys, but he’s now on £100k a week, which makes him our joint 3rd highest paid with Theo, which is wrong IMO.

  99. Romford Pele

    “For me their most glaring weakness is the wingers… valancia and ashley young seriously lack quality. All they have is pace and they are very inefficient just smacking in shit crosses after shit crosses.”

    The winger point is moot mate because United now play a 3-5-2 so wingers are pretty much irrelevant. LVG said as much recently. The formation is set up to get the best out of the attacking midfielders and strikers. I saw Young against Real Madrid and he played as a wing-back, very well in fact. United are relying much more on combination play than the ‘get it wide and cross it’ like they have done for many years. LVG is all about efficiency. I agree with you that they may actually have an outside bet at the title because they’ll be fresh each week. That’s a big worry.

  100. N7

    Carvalho could be exactly what we need from what I’ve seen – please Arsenal, make it happen. That young player has we need – power, 2 great feet and excelent passing – defends with energy and flair setting up quick counter attacks.

  101. Romford Pele


    Sometimes managers just have their favourites. IMO Sakho is definitely not as good as Kos but Deschamps just preferred to go with a tried and tested combo which is fair enough. Varane is a monster though. If it had been me, would’ve been him and Kos.

  102. Marko

    Nothing more silly than a discussion on Vermaelen. Last season was the first decent season we had with a cb pairing for years and people are saying we should of played Tommy more? Besides the fact he was injured quite a bit his form when he did play wasn’t great. Schar, Inigo Martinez, Hummels or even Howedes to replace him for me. Maybe Aymeric or Joel Veltman?

  103. MidwestGun

    Deputy Diggler in the house!!! Well, it finally happened, they kicked me out of Texas. Lol. Shout out to the amazing senoritas in the coastal bend area. Luby beach, Padre island. Made me feel like Wenger in Brazil. 😀

    Missed most of the preseason games, thank God. Even a degenerate gambler like me doesn’t bet on that trash. Don’t care much about it. Heard my boy JCampbell had a good game. Think he will fit in. Direct player, has quickness and ability on the ball. Have seen him play a lot with Costa Rica versus US, was always impressed. His weakness however is that he plays a high energy game and his fitness isn’t always there. Why you see him fade. As in world cup. Also, he could finish better sometimes. But he creates chances. Think he will make a great super sub when teams are tired.

    Also, heard Sanogoal is the second coming of TH14. Lol. I’ll hold my judgement on that. Thank you. Preseason and all.

    As for Vermaelen. Thought he looked better at left back last year. Could have been used there more. But really if he goes won’t be that upset. Not sure why he was made captain. Never did understand that one.

    N5- still here. Just been busy working and now done. Didn’t give up. Not my style. Miss me? Lol. I was right about n.eil tho, crazy as hell.
    Ready to get this season started. Still need a Carvalho and a Giroud kick up the ass tho. 😀

    Ohh and hi y’all!!…………….. Ready for season?

  104. TitsMcgee

    I’m not sure about that. He’s on 50k a week atm, that’s an astronomical pay rise. ”

    Why do you think he’s on 50k pw?

    Surely he would jump at the chance to more than double his salary by joining us. Seems likely to me that he’s on similar wages at Madrid and doesn’t want to take a massive pay cut to come here.

  105. london gunner

    Romford Pele

    Its just a consistence that Louis Van Gal’s favoured formation suits Man United to a tee

    Looks like a marriage made in heaven 🙁 hopefully it ends up in a messy divorce 🙂