Happy good morning to you my dears. Pedro back in the hot seat again after a delightful sabbatical of doing nothing on my tube journey in for two days.
Right, so, what’s been going on?
Ahh, Santi back to Spain in the summer. On the face of it, this is making everyone really sad. But the reality is, it’s been a long time coming. I think Arsenal would have taken money for the Spaniard for the last two summers. He’s a talent, no doubt. But he’s not been consistent. He’s dipped in and out. Even earlier on this year it was the case.
A number of factors contribute to that. I don’t think we’ve managed his fitness particularly well. Arsenal players work in an environment of ‘keep quiet, play on’ which has meant he’s played all the games and has looked jaded in a number of them. I also think we’ve played him out of position for a lot of his tenure. Now he’s in the middle, he’s the King. He looks at ease, he makes our game flow, he’s showing up Ozil (kind of not really actually), he looks incredible.
But I think it’d be remiss to think that can carry on. He’s 30 now. You need fitness to play in that role. If Arsenal are thinking of playing him in a deeper role, which he’s excelled in, I think that would be a very short termist view. We need legs, we need 3 games a week, we need power and pace.
If he goes in the summer, it’ll be good business if we can bring in £10m for a player of that age. Well, it’ll be good business if we can find an internal replacement or we can bring in exceptional talent from outside that’s of an age and physicality to kick on. This situation reminds me of the bang on decisions Fergie used to make back in the day shifting on players at the peak of their powers. Wenger has a big, big decision. Does he keep Santi on like Alex F did with Scholes… or shift on player of the year?
Look, all I’ll say is he had the coldness to shift on Luzhny after he was MoM in the FA Cup Final back in the day. That monster is capable of heinous acts.
If we were looking to bring in talent that might appease the loss of Cazorla, you wouldn’t need to look much further than Dybala. The guy is absolutely electric. He is absolutely the sort of talent that could light up the Premier League. It’s always difficult to gauge watching him in the Italian league because it’s so slow compared to the Premiership, but the 5ft9 forward has explosive pace like Hazard and if he can’t ghost a player with his energy, he uses brute force to power through people.
I think what’s exciting about him is he can play outwide, through the middle or in that kind of false 9 type of role. I think he’d be electric in our forward line. He’s also Argentinian with a Polish grandad… he’ll be a work horse and a little unhinged. Perfect! He has similarities in style to Reus. With the German now signed up for another year (and a big target of ours previously), he might work out to be a cheaper sexier version. Not that our team requires anymore sexy!
Imagine though. Bring him into the fold, then bring in Schneiderlin, land a new keeper and possibly another powerful centre mid. Well, you’ve just packed our your team with all the power and pace it needs to content.
We’d have the makings of a squad, that if managed correctly, could take it all…
Dreams, I appreciate. But the Dybala stories could have legs purely because Wenger has identified that he lacked power and pace to succeed. You can also see it in what Shad has done to Ozil. He’s made him more suited to the league in the same way Fergie bulked Ronaldo.
Manchester United in the FA Cup? Typical. It’s gearing up to be an Arsenal vs Liverpool final, providing we can get over this horrendous United hoodoo we have.
I watched them struggle against Preston. There are a few things that are clear. The players hate the system, the manager hates his squad, the squad hate the manager and yet somehow, they’re flying high. They are absolute garbage and I’m pretty sure they’re going to get found out in a big way. Once the wins dry up, it’ll go to shite.
Amusing to see one of the redtops absolve LVG of all blame. You can see how they hedge their bets, can’t you?
I personally think Liverpool might steal into the top 4. I know I’ve said many times before, but I really rate Rodgers. Good to see a struggling coach turn his club around and prove he has the mettle at the highest level. Be interesting to see if Klopp can do the same and make Dortmund challengers again.
Right, I feel I’ve babbled on enough. Take this post and run free!