Happy Thanksgiving: Arsene, give us a title and we will thank

by .



‘It’s like Christmas, without the presents’

So right now, I’m raiding my absent flatmates booze cupboard, I’m wearing a sh*t jumper and I’m picking fights with my family on my Whatsapp.


I feel so festive right now.

ANYWAY, less about my day, what about yours?

You want some Arsenal… ok…

Wenger says that basically anyone can win the league. Including us, but he negatively cites the fact we’re only 13 games in, so we can’t be dishing out crowns quite yet.

He’s right you know. But it’s a positive we’re still in the mix. The amount of times over the past decade we’ve been out by November is crazy. But we’re not this time. We’re in the mix. In mixed form. No where near understanding if we or any other team has what it takes to string it together for the year.

I mean, are Liverpool in it? Staggering that they can be after they bombed off a manager for bad results. But that’s the nature of the beast.

Are we good enough?

I don’t think so. I also don’t look at City and feel they’re good enough. Nor United. But out of the chasing pack, I would say City have the best credentials because they have a  team of Champions and they have that golden nugget… a world class striker.

So we’ll see. My issues with the current set up are well documented. I don’t think we’re a particularly focused team. The manager doesn’t seem to be able to keep the players winnertivity up for long enough. The West Brom game was bad luck, but we also didn’t really play that well. Then you have Sheffield Wednesday, Bayern, Zagreb and Olympiacos… We haven’t had out bad streak in the league yet, but you kind of feel it’ll certainly come.

I also think we’re going to massively struggle without Coquelin in the side. Our midfield terrier wasn’t backed up properly in the summer and I think the cracks will show when he’s not there. He does a lot of the dirty work for the side. He covers a huge amount of ground at pace. A massive loss. A real engine room of a player.

I also think our squad is on a knife edge… you lose Ozil or Sanchez, two players that are carrying our dreams, you lose a helluva lot that I’m not sure we can replace at all.

I know it’s stupid to say that if you lose your best players, you’re in trouble. But Arsenal are pretty damn good at losing players. Those two have been playing a lot and out of their skins. Can we manage their fitness from now until the end of the season?

I have my doubts.

But, we have a pretty good December with lots of opportunities to keep freshness in players legs… as well as a few lovely gaps where we can send players home to see their families or shag pads or wherever young professionals go.

So, who knows.

What I can’t work out with this league is why I feel so flat about all the teams in it? I mean, where is our version of Barca or Madrid? Why don’t we have a Bayern Munich? Where the United of 99 or the Arsenal of 2002? All the money is here, we have some of the best coaches now, but we still don’t have a pound for pound team to purr over?

Don’t get me wrong, the football is still great fun… but it’s a sorry state of affairs when only one team in the top 6 has a world class striker.

In fact, world class players seem at a Premium compared to 10 years ago when there seemed to be a lot more. Is that because I’m just being super critical, or is it because there’s been a massive shift in what we’re looking at from our players these days?

Pace over anything… power over most things… skill, kind of in third place.

One to chew the cud over.

Right, all the thanks on this day of thanks… I’m off to get very drunk and rowdy.


95 Responses to “Happy Thanksgiving: Arsene, give us a title and we will thank”

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  1. Up 4 Grabs Now

    Pedro, happy thanksgiving!

    i think there is a lack of real World class players at the moment, so Big teams are holding onto the ones they have and we don’t seem to have the merry go round we usually have.

    There does seem a few coming towards the end of their careers now and not many to take their place?

    Zlatan, Buffon, Rooney (not the same player he was 3-4 years ago) Ribery,Casillas.
    There is World class players out there but definitely less than there used to be.

  2. Up 4 Grabs Now

    You could be right?
    Like a northern Chelsea!

    The fans would be happy to win the title, but Bored to shit with the football and would soon turn on LVG.

  3. Carts

    Yep, the days when several teams per top league had a fearsome striker at the helm are long gone.

    I remember when you’d tune into Serie A and see the likes of Baggio, Del Piero, Batistuta, Vieri, Signori, Crespo, Montella, Shevcheko, Vialli, Trezeguet, et al smashing it. This is before we name the likes of Kluivert, Rivaldo, Morientes, Raul, Shearer,Cole, Henry, Owen, Yorke.

    Nowadays, across europe you got 3 of the top (ten) at Barcelona, one at Bayern, one at City, one at Madrid; then it’s a struggle trying to find anyone else.

    It’s strange what is happening in football – more moeny than ever before yet top striker are virtually extinct.

  4. Louis Almeida

    Yes less striker these days. And I agree with Wenger, the best strikers are always South Americans because a lot of them have come from the streets so still play in their own style rather than one maybe cultivated in the academies. Then most teams don’t play 4-4-2 anymore. Most just have one striker so to be a top one you need to be well-rounded rather than a poacher like Chicarito. Very few who have the whole skillset. I look round and don’t see much. One striker might be good in one area but lacking in others. It’s all about midfielders these days it seems.

  5. Up 4 Grabs Now

    Top Draw players do seem to be dropping off a bit. including the ones i already mentioned you can add, Arjen Robben, Iniesta, Lahm,Thiago Silva, Xavi, Yaya Toure, Tevez, Alonso.
    Some have already gone, and some maybe with a year or two left at the top level.

  6. Up 4 Grabs Now

    Louis, i still think there are games we could play two up top.
    we get the benefit of Girouds height and holding up the ball, and the benefit of Theo or alexis finishing and pace.

    It would mean Ozil being withdrawn to play alongside Coquelin but in certain games it would work.

  7. N5

    Sorry Grabs, keep missing your reply. Last day working tomorrow you lucky sod, are you working in SA or chilling for a few years on the profit?

    I’m all good thanks (that’s too Tunny too), work has been hectic for a while so had to just pop on to the Grove now and again, see certain moaners moaning and I just close it again! I noticed gambon was back the other day, that was nice to see.

  8. Louis Almeida

    I think there are loads of good young talented players, not all of them world class though
    Douglas Costa
    De Bruyne

    Loads more I’m sure.

    Then you have the current world class players like Messi, Suarez, Ronaldo, Benzema, Bale, Lewandowski, Vidal, Ozil, Alexis, Cesc, Matic, Busquets, Ramos, Marcelo, Ibra, Matuidi, Modric, Aguero, Silva etc

  9. tunnygriffboy


    Yes power and pace over skill and great technical ability. It’s what makes our league so watchable but why we struggle in Europe.

    Re WC talent the super teams of Europe are stockpiling it. Look at the squads Barca, Madrid and Bayern have. Players want to play for them and be happy sitting on the bench even if they can get more money elsewhere. Two of the bestplayers in the league play for us and were cast offs from the Spanish giants. Aguero is at city because he was bought a few years ago.

    Also our league involves more matches, we have two cup competitions plus the CL. We have no winter break and the grinding intense physicality of the league is damn hard. Do players want to burn themselves out ?

    It appears to me that the big two in Spain plus Bayern tend to get first dibbs on players. Then we get the super wealthy who tend to get the rest. Clubs like Man u, PSG and city where money is no object. We tend to be a little bit behind them but are sneaking in with some really good purchases and do have enough money to get the players we wantfro m the second tier of players.

    Intersting that you say our season depends on Ozil and Alexis staying fit. Ditto Aguero and Silva for City. I agree send Alexis, Ozil Santi and Kos away for 4 daysafter the Norwich game. Even rest one or two for the sSunderland game using them off the bench if they are needed. Rest them for Olympiacos.

  10. Up 4 Grabs Now

    Hello mate yeah was a bit shocked to see gambon.

    I pop in from time to time recently myself as its been hectic with organising everything.
    Chilling for 6-8 weeks then will start looking at small businesses and jobs.
    Got some good equity from our sale, and houses are dirt cheap so can afford to take a break for awhile.
    Don’t think my missus will let me have more than that though!

    just finishing work now, and off to my leaving do tonight. but will probably be on tomorrow if your around!

  11. Louis Almeida

    Up 4 Grabs Now – I don’t think Ozil will be good as a CM because he doesn’t like to drop that deep and is not a dictator like Cazorla. I think 4-4-2 can be useful when you’re chasing games but not to start. You can still have options to play two upfront but would need to use something like a 4-4-2 (diamond) or a 3-5-2 to make sure you don’t lose the midfield battle.

  12. N5

    Grabs, I wasn’t going to be mate, but I will be now as I want to hear how tonight went and how your feeling. Have a great night and don’t get too messy.

  13. gonsterous


    Happy thanks giving and cheers to another wonderful year of blogging.. I don’t know how I would spend my evenings without reading the wonderful post as well as the commentators thoughts.. so this year I’m thankful for that..

  14. YoungMurphy

    Carts good point. I already told me mate we saw the golden generation already. Rooney is the last bastion as he came onto the scene at 16.

    Also I have to lol, Sanchez basically needs a rest, arsene wenger knows it but yet won’t rest him. No need to mess about with hamstrings Mr Wenger, let him rest up!!

  15. Carts


    Rooney’s “legs” look gone and he’s only 30, same age as CR7 who seems to be making a new name for himself around these streets too.

    90s through to 2005’ish gave you strikers that would score a couple even if you got spanked on a weekend. Strikers that genuinely put the fear of God into defenders.

    I hope that era comes back around but I suspect the whole false #9 thing to probably continue at the pace that we’ve seen it thus far.

  16. jwl

    Louis Almeida

    I agree that kids playing on street are more entertaining because they haven’t had their personality coached out of them. Also, kids in Western countries use to play on street because of boredom, nothing else to do, but they are overstimulated now and barely exercise. Being part of proper team is good because players do need coaching but also playing on street with friends allowed kids to hone their tricks and whirls. Video games are why modern players are superb athletes but very boring to watch.

    Are a lot of the regulars here American because it seems quiet at le grove today?

    Here in Canada, Thanksgiving happens in early October, and we have some distance between it and Christmas. Any arguments over dinner table have time to settle down here but in America, both holidays close together, Christmas is like round two of any fights they had just a few weeks ago at Thanksgiving.

  17. Carts

    Re: Sanchez

    Can someone remind us all what type of injury comes with fatigue? If we continue revving the shit out of Sanchez he’ll do an ACL on us.

    Even that tackle he made in the first half to retrieve the ball after losing it was all wrong.

    He was on the left side of the player and used his RIGHT leg to unorthodoxically slide and win the ball. All it took was for matey to fall to his left, on to Sanchez’s right leg, and it would’ve been curtains.

  18. chippy Brady

    Players wages unsustainable. Therefore on income levels like Arsenal, we can’t get world class. We’ve seen the top players and mediocre players (Falcao) easily earning 300k pw plus. Our wage bill just won’t get you a team of 5 or 6 world class players. But more importantly to keep spending so much on wages for even average players at some point we are going to reach the tipping point of how much a club can extract from its fan Base and commercial partners to cover that. The inflation in players wages is too much and it’ll have to reverse at some stage. The result being a very average league at the moment charging fans the highest prices.

  19. Louis Almeida

    Jwl,yes I agree. I think Wenger was asked about this recently and said that a lot of young kids these days are spoilt. Technology has made life easy for everyone so many young people do not want to work hard. Or a lot of them that do become footballers become midfielders. Being a lone striker is a hard job so you need to be well rounded to do it. A lot of teams are looking for strikers these days but they are struggling. I agree that players need coaching but also the freedom to express themselves. I think it is why a lot of people are enjoying Neymar right now because he is a breath of fresh air. He has a lot of innovative tricks that you know were honed playing on the streets as a kid. Even the way Alexis plays you can tell it’s very street-like.

  20. tunnygriffboy

    Young Murph

    Yes Alexis needs a rest. Couple of things though. How many managers rest their most important players? Also we have an away game v Norwich and any game away in PL is tough. Throw in the injury situation and it’s a really tough one.

    We have a week off after Sunday and the likes of Alexis, Ozil, Kos, Santi could be given time off. You could even bench a couple for the Sunderland game as we have more platers back and more options available. Be interesting to see what goes down.

  21. tunnygriffboy


    Top players play for Barca Bayern and Madrid for the honour of playing for them

    Then you have City, Man u and Psg who pay sh.tloads and inflate the market

    We are in the next tier of clubs although being in London and history we are an attractive proposition. We can pay very good wages but can’t comp ete with some. Best way to improve our pulling power is to be really competitive in the league every year and regularly get into last 8 of CL. We are close and should be doing this over the next couple of seasons

  22. Devon Gooner

    Nice picture of the East River Pedro, how lucky you are, make sure you see the Thanksgiving Day parade. If you see a holding CM on a float grab him and send him over to Ashburton Grove. He will probably be a Turkey but Arsene can train him up!

  23. ARgooner

    Hppy t giving Pedro and at least a day of Europa league and spuds and pool and knowing aw is certain of bargains come jan…at least acdg to article in guardian

  24. Joe

    You think Man U would care if they bore their way to th title. We haven’t won in 11 years. I wouldn’t care if every goal we scored every goal off Girouds ass for 1 nil victories all the way to the title.

    Let’s get over this myth that we play beautiful football. We haven’t played it for years.

    Let’s just win the league. Worry about semantics later.

    Note:we will not win the title this season ugly or beautifully

  25. Joe

    And the Bigging Up the return of the Ox. He has been terrible for us this season
    You happy because he’s another body or do you actually believe he is going to help us. Because based on the last few seasons,
    He isn’t

  26. Wallace

    Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain could return at Carrow Road while fellow England international Theo Walcott is back in training and is close to a comeback.

    However Alexis Sanchez and Joel Campbell both sustained minor injuries in the win and Wenger said he will assess their fitness over the weekend to determine their availability against the Canaries.

    “Sanchez had a little hamstring alarm but we will see how he recovers from that,” Wenger said. “Joel Campbell had a little calf problem so I will assess all that Friday, latest Saturday.”

    – sky sports

  27. Cyrus the virus

    Jose mourinho
    I would always like English teams to qualify, first,
    Arsenal are in a group where a kid friend of mine is the manager of Olympiakos and it would be fantastic for the kid’s career to go through. “So I have to be honest and say that I would like the kid and Olympiakos to go on, and we know that Bayern go through for sure. .
    The reality is that Arsenal can still do it. Arsenal can perfectly go to Athens and win. “Even having a bad group phase – because to lose at home to Olympiakos and to lose in Zagreb and to lose six points they should win is bad – they can qualify. “It’s not my problem, it’s their problem, but the reality is that first of all they can qualify, and secondly if they go into the Europa League then they become favourites to win. “So I think they can have success in the Champions League by going to the next round and they can succeed in the Europa League because then they become favourites, so I think they have a lot to play for.”

  28. Jeff

    “If I find the right quality I will do something [in January]”

    I laughed so much when I heard that in his interview. Guess what! We are probably not going to find anyone – again. LOL.

  29. Joe


    It’s not like going to a supermarket. Do you know how hard it to find someone better than Giroud, arteta, flamini, Campbell, ox, Walcott,

  30. Jeff


    What amazes me is when he sits in front of the journalist and says he will only buy top, top quality – nobody opens their mouth to say well what about all the flops like Santos, Park, Miyachi, Sanogo, etc. Did you think they were top, top quality?

  31. Joe

    No reporter has the balls to call him out on his bullshit and that’s just not on transfers. On everything he talks about.
    They are all afraid of losing their press pass for the Emirates as you know the arrogant prick would take it away the second someone questions him. Seen much of Jacqui Oatley or whatever her name was?

    It’s like all those tough talking AST members who talk a big game but chicken out when it actually comes to comforting Wenger et al at the meetings.

  32. Le Phil

    @legrove: as you already know, only few clubs have a small sided game training approach (based on 4v4 – e.g. Southampton – look up “The Coaching Manual”). Until 2 years ago, 10 year old kids played 11 a side in the british youth leagues. For the last 10-15 years Germany and Spain play 7 a side until the age of +/- 12 and 9 a side until the age of 14. What a difference in technical development that makes.

    So as a player why would you want to play against some 120kg monster of a defender who will just take you out?


  33. R.S.P.C.Arsenal


    Your missing the point ….
    The aforementioned players are sort of good ,
    However Arsene knows those players really well an if he thought they could have bettered us he would have put purchased along time ago …

  34. Follow the money

    Newsflash. Pep going to City. This year is our shot. No chance at the PL once he arrives and LVG gets settled. Bet the cheapskate still won’t buy in January

  35. Mick Kartun

    Sometimes the pro wenger gooners did not get the logic reason why so many moaners here like @Joe and others including me, seemed only posts nothing but negativity to our club. I can understand their tiresome and felt sick about it.
    Guess anyone who does not share wengerites blinkered views comes under that tag.

    Maybe this well explained comment from a logic and reasonable gooner from another blog post will give another point of view that we all (the pro and anti wenger) love Arsenal as our beloved club to the bone but only Wenger and Silent Stan that ruined it with their egos.

    Here is the comment and I quote:
    “We beat a very average Zagreb team and you want a victory parade bus rounded the city? Do we need to remind you 1000 times that we are not qualified the group yet? If criticisms of any kind, be it constructive or petty or even personal jibes cam spur a team on to better things its certainly don’t work with Arsenal, otherwise we would have won at least 2 league titles and maybe a CL title in the last 11 years. Unfortunately Wenger and the players have developed a thick skin and live in a bubble where nothing touches them. anyone remember Wenger’s 1000th game in charge, a day after Maureen called him a specialist in failure? There I was thinking the team talk has taken care of itself, the momentous occasion coupled with that low blow is just what is needed and what did we so, lost by 6 goals. All these ex pros turned armchair pundit, always ready to have a go at Wenger and the club at every given opportunity but am also realistic enough to know that more often than not they talk a lot of sense, even if it hurts a lot. They constantly point out weaknesses and shortcomings in our club and unless you are delusional you can see them, proven right time after time after time. There is nothing I will love more than to see them all eat their words by us winning the title but will I even stake a rusted penny on it happening, HELL NO, and I am no less of a naive supporter, just a true 100% Gooner with his eyes wide open.”

    Very well explained. COYG.

  36. Mick Kartun

    Just read the news that Manchester City want Lionel Messi and are reportedly willing to pay him a whopping £800,000-a-week to take him to the Etihad with potential £40million annual salary and he will have just two years left on his £500,000-a-week deal at Camp Nou. The Sun also reports that signing Messi would also greatly improve the chances of City bringing Pep Guardiola to the club as their next coach.

    Wow, will our wage structure be modified to compensate Messi?
    We know we have our 200m cash in the bank if used as Messi’s potential transfer fee. But whom am I kidding? We live in Wengerland, better stop drooling.

    But looks like my prediction bet with Pep to City and Carlo to Manure next season is looking good.

  37. Mick Kartun

    Interesting bet for addict this week:

    Leicester vs Manure

    Jamie Vardy to score anytime 2/1 by Bet Victor.

    Vardy equaled Ruud van Nistelrooy’s record of scoring in ten consecutive Premier League games and looks good to set a new landmark, but he will be up against the meanest defense in the league, United have only conceded nine goals so far this season, but he should still be backed to net and 2/1 with Bet Victor is a great price.

    What do you think Midwest, WE?
    200 quid placed bet for Vardy looks promising? Vardy has the urge to break that record I think.

  38. Mick Kartun

    @spanish dave: yeah, sad boring times, and wenger may be will be our manager till he is 90 year old in wheel chair.

    @grooveydad: neh, vardy has the hunger to score every time. well you never know with betting, either you win or whip. But that’s the excitement, mate.

  39. Highbury4ever

    “Arsene, give us a title and we will thank”

    Pedro, just for your information : arsène never “gives” anything, he’s far too tightwad for that.

  40. Kane

    I fucking hate this term “world class” – it’s a lazy term that is used to justify a perspective.

    Personally I feel Harry Kane is world class… by that I mean his overall play is top quality, he is a proven goal scorer at domestic and international level and could play for one of the world’s top 5 teams.

    Sanchez is also world class… as is Benteke (injury aside)… as is Diego Costa…

    If you are saying they are not world class…. then it will help to define what “world class” means first… so let’s do that then come back to deciding who is and who is not world class.

  41. Emiratesstroller

    Just read that FIFA may impose transfer ban on Real starting in summer which will be applied for similar reasons to that imposed on Barcelona.

    Whilst I am sure that will be challenged by Real it will mean probably that they will be active in January. One rumour is that they are after Sanchez, but somehow I don’t see that happening.

    There is absolutely no pressure on Arsenal to sell not least because we are
    probably the one club in European Football who are not short of money.

    Arsenal do need to make a foray in transfer market in January on two counts:
    1. We cannot afford to gamble this time on Coquelin’s return to fitness. We
    need a DMF.
    2.The club needs to spend money in current financial year otherwise we will
    land up with a Tax Bill on the profits we generate.

    The more that the transfer window is discussed the more certain that I am
    that Arsenal should be focussing on players who are realistically buyable and
    injury free.

    The player we should target is Krychowiak. He is at Seville who are generally
    willing to sell their players albeit at high prices. Sadly Arsenal missed the boat
    in the summer when he had a fixed buyout price of £22 million, but even at
    £30 million he would be probably reasonable value considering that he is now
    rated one of best midfielders in his position.

    Seville are out of Champions League and unlikely to qualify next season for
    Champions League. Krychowiak’s versatility would more or less guarantee
    him a regular place in starting lineup at Arsenal and I cannot imagine that
    we cannot outbid Seville when it comes to wages.

    This is probably the one player who is buyable who would be considered a
    stepup on Cazorla, Coquelin and Wilshire in defensive role and if required he
    can also play Centre Back.

  42. qna

    Harry Kane is not a world class player.

    EPL is currently, for all its money, not a very high quality league. Its a good thing because Arsenal are quite poor overall and yet we are still genuinely in the mix to win the league.

  43. Highbury4ever

    “Every year with Arsenal, it’s the injuries. It’s not just once, this is all the time. I know Arsene Wenger doesn’t run them into the ground in training sessions. Wenger is very good with sport science, he isn’t one of those managers who will tire them. Are they unlucky? Are the pitches too hard? Coquelin’s was unlucky, but look at Theo Walcott and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s muscle injuries, I don’t think they were unlucky. That’s just not good preparation. That’s not unlucky, you shouldn’t be pulling muscles.”

    Ah ah ah!! Paul Merson knows best!!

  44. Highbury4ever

    Apparently chelscum “might” want to recruit van pussy this winter…
    ZE perfect club for this douchebag!! lol

  45. Up 4 Grabs Now

    Afternoon all, Bit quiet yesterday & today?

    Highbury, you never know Wenger might try for RVP in january saying there was no super qualitee around!

  46. Kane

    qna… I write a post about how world class is a lazy term that means different things to different people….

    you then label Harry Kane as not being world class… but don’t explain why or even what “world class” means to you….

    You are part of the problem! lol

  47. Bamford10


    For me, “world class” means the player is the best in the world at his position or is near equal to the best in the world at his position, that said player could make the World XI or the World XXII.

    Harry Kane is quite good but not WC, IMO.

  48. MidwestGun

    Echo……….. echo……… echo……

    Hahaha N5. For me personally it’s because of the holiday. .. trying to sleep off a big meal. And ignore my crazy relatives.

    Bit ironic for a dude named Kane touting Harry Kane as “world class” Conspiracy theory #354.

  49. MidwestGun

    Agree with Bamford, World Class is a subjective term sure. But for me personally it means that player is among the top 5 at their position.
    So if you can name 5 better players then they aren’t World Class.

    Even by Kanes own definition, (could play for top 5 Club) HK isn’t World class.
    Sorry but Kane isn’t gonna play for Barca,RM, Bayern,PSG or even Citeh….unless they are desperate for a homegrown player.

  50. PetrCechYourself

    @Kane: The world class definition is different for each position in my opinion.

    A world class forward is a game changer. Someone that pops up with something from nothing, scores 20+ a season comfortably and carries a team when they’re in a rough patch. Messi is the top example for sure but players like Sanchez are of a similar ilk.

    A world class midfielder is very similar, creates something from nothing but also spots those passes that nobody else does, can drop the ball on a postage stamp or pop up with a game changing goal. Xavi’s/Iniesta even Gerrard in his prime to a degree.

    A world class defender is a player who is an absolute rock, makes those last ditch tackles, leads on the field, commands the box and pops up with probably 4-5 goals a season. As much as I hate him John Terry was a prime example.

  51. Bamford10

    Arsenal to assess Calum Chambers in defensive midfield before looking to transfer market, according to Soccer News Wire.

    “Calum Chambers has been playing defensive midfield in Arsenal training as Arsene Wenger considers whether he needs to make a new signing in that position in January.”

    Seems like the approach Wenger would take.

  52. Bamford10


    I like your top-five-in-his-position rubric, because sometimes the fifth best player at a position is still a fantastic player and worthy of the designation “world class”.

    Not all that different from Kane’s could-start-for-one-of-the-top-five-clubs, ultimately.

    The real problems come when you talk about a specific player. For example I imagine Koscielny would divide opinion here. For me he is not “world class,” but some here likely think he is. For me we only have two world class players — Ozil and Sanchez — though I wouldn’t put either of them in the top XXII.