Unai Emery delivers his vision, and it’s an exciting one (long read)

by & filed under News Review.

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Ok, we’re in.

No more moaning from me.

The new era is here.

Unai Emery stepped out in his press conference, followed in by Ivan Gazidis who is trying to refocus the club around his leadership. The CEO spoke of extensive interviews, an 8 manager shortlist, as well as the creation of a 100-page dossier given to the board. He also rambled on about becoming the best, something we’ve heard him do many times in the past. This is now his club, he can’t hide behind Wenger anymore, and he’ll have to deliver… well, I say that… he’ll have to at the very least make us a top 4 side again.

I did like his ITK crowd jibe, dropping some Chinese philosopher gold on the chancer crowd.

“Those who know don’t talk. Those who talk don’t know”

It shouldn’t bother me, but watching people harvest followers based on lies is so tragic. This sleight of the managerial hand literally massacred the credibility of about 15 accounts all at the same time. But we know how it goes, like in politics these days, there’s no consequence for alternative facts.

BACK TO EMERY.

“I am thrilled to be joining one of the great clubs in the game,”

“Arsenal is known and loved throughout the world for its style of play, its commitment to young players, the fantastic stadium, the way the club is run.

“I’m very excited to be given the responsibility to start this important new chapter in Arsenal’s history.

His English is piss poor, it was amusing to read Arsenal fans egg him on like a toddler taking his first walk across a living room.

‘Well, his English is better than my Spanish’

Barry, mate, you’re asking for 2 pints of beer and a sausage roll at Linekers in Marbella… not managing a team of precious athletes for £6m a year.

Anyway, let’s hope that good spirit and grace is carried through the dark times this year because there will no doubt be some.

What I liked about Emery, outside his exceptional shock of dark black hair, was his ambition and vision. He stated he’d like the club ‘to be the best team in the Premier League, and the world.’

Well hose me down with sticky can of excitement juice.

He spoke of his plans for the players.

‘In my career I am very demanding for all, demanding of the players also. My idea is to be a protagnosit for all of the match. We play against teams with this personality, and I think the history here shows they love playing with posession of the ball. I like this, and when you don’t have posession of the ball I want a squad very, very intense in pressing. It’s two things that are very important for me. Being a protaganist, posession of the ball, and pressing.’

I’ll eat up words like that all day. Arsene Wenger stopped challenging players, a long time ago. Things were so bad in his final few seasons, he was scared to drop big names and he was totally incapable of rejecting a holiday form from his most expensive player.

Emery is rolling with the 3Ps like some sort of business coach. Can you imagine Ozil reading that? I bet he’s filling out a holiday form for the month of August already.

I like his use of the word protagonist. I don’t want a coach slamming players through tables, but we need one who can envision a path for young players and old, and push players to be better athletes and smarter technicians. It’s clear that a pressing style of football is something the club sought out, it’s a disruptive way of playing and if executed correctly can give lesser players an advantage over stronger ones. Just look at Spurs and how they bat above their average. Look at how Liverpool have taken a fairly average squad to two european finals in three seasons.

The club have hired a partner, that much is clear. I suspect the club wanted Arteta and Nagelsmann becuase they’d easily fit into a Head Coach structure, because they’ll have never known the glory days of a big shot manager who runs it all. When the exec team were searching for experience, they needed someone who needed the job. Perhaps why Carlo, Allegri, Enrique and Conte were passed by. Emery is an experienced name, but a damaged coach. He’ll be hugely grateful for the job, he’ll have a chip on his shoulder from the Paris experience, and he’ll work with the talent around him to prove he’s an elite part of the coaching aristocracy. He’s experienced, but Ivan is still a king maker if this goes well.

The first year is a monumental rebuild. He’ll be working with players, who as Per Mertesacker said, spend 3 hours training, with half of that time spent on their phones. It’s clear Emery is up for the challenge.

“I believe in the players we have here,”

“We can grow with these players and the objective is to work hard with these talented players, to work to be a candidate for all the titles in the future.”

He certainly has a lot of talent at his disposal. I think he has an exciting challenge ahead. He’ll have to work out how to motivate Ozil to care more often, he’ll also have to find a way to deploy him in a modern system, there aren’t a lot of pure #10s these days, so it’ll be interesting to see where he goes.

Aaron Ramsey is an all-action hero because he tries to do everything. Where will he play for Emery? What will his specific role be? Because I doubt a man as tactically strict as our new guy is going to put him in the ‘do what the fuck you like’ position. Up front, he has two world-class finishers. He has the pace of Auba, and the guts of a very exciting player in Lacazette. Is there a plan that involves the both?

We also have some exciting young defenders, so it’ll be fun to see who makes the cut. Bellerin is an exceptional talent, Chambers started to look a player at the end of last season, we know Holding can boss Diego on his day, and then we have Mavrapanos and Bielek.

I am particularly excited that we now have a group of coaches who can develop AMN, Nketiah, Willock and Nelson. If those four tank under the new regime, they’re simply not good enough. I think we’ve let some young players go over the years that really could have been something else if they’d had the proper coaching from an early age, case in point, Chamberlain over at Liverpool. Now our players will be getting properly educated and that’ll hopefully lead to more breakthrough players like we had in the early years.

We really need to hope Diamond Eyes can pull through with some proper signings. We need a top centre back, a mobile holding midfielder who can tackle and a keeper who can play with the ball at his feet like Allison or Ederson. It’s always tough finding players who can do that, but not as difficult as finding creators and goalscorers which we currently have. The brilliant thing about this summer is we have a contemporary scout with a proven track record hunting down players, we have a proper contracts person dealing with the paperwork, and we have a deal maker in Raul. Hopefully, this will be the least banter summer of the last 15 years.

Finally, it’s exciting to know that we’re hiring a coach who can help us be better than the sum of our parts. Wenger stopped doing that in 2008. The whole club will be re-energised, and hopefully, the fans will feel that when they watch players running through doors to make it happen on the pitch.

The future is certainly brighter. Whatever happens with Emery, he’s a moderniser. He’ll discipline the squad, he’ll rip out the bad parts, and he’ll leave us in better shape than he finds us. The football will be intense and exciting, something we’ve not seen in years. Going into a season not knowing what’s going to happen is a beautiful thing, it truly is.

I’m serious when I say this, I’m over being disappointed with Arsenal, so this season is going to be a very different writing exercise. I’ll still call out bullshit, but that’s the job of a blogger, even if you don’t like it. However, I’m going to give this guy a real chance because we all want to enjoy our club. We’ve just seen that it takes at least a year for new ideas to bed into a squad (Pep/Klopp), this won’t be an overnight success. There will be incredible days, there will be shocking days, as long as we’re seeing progress, we’ll all be happy.

So here’s to a new era, it feels great, I’m onboard the excitement wagon, and can’t wait to share the season with you all!

Welcome, Unai. x

P.S. Can I bitch about the kit? What happened there? #PumaOut

710 Responses to “Unai Emery delivers his vision, and it’s an exciting one (long read)”

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  1. China

    I’m also happy if Perez comes back. He is so much more useful than welbeck

    Welbeck’s entire list of strengths consists of him being mobile and a runner. In 2018 and a serious football club that is nowhere near good enough

  2. TallestTiz

    Lorenzo Pellegrino seems to play with both feet. Hope he is a proper DM. 1.86m height… Perfect if he’s a good baller.
    I didn’t really observe him during the champions league run.

  3. marcos

    Zonzi is slow maatic is slow alonzo wasn’t d fastest but at 29 n above have learnt discfline involved in dat DM role. At 24 or 25 deyy were learning Juus like xaka.so in time xaka will get better wit understandin

  4. Ashwin gunner

    Hey Charlie

    “Still not sure how that suddenly means we lost the game because of him. ”

    Errr. Because we did…

    “You going to continue to ignore the fact he setup our goal, and was the only one challenging Fellaini’s eventual winner? ”

    I am not ignoring that fact. he is good going forward, but his job is to provide protection to CB as well. cant ignore that too. And yes he was the only one challenging Fellaini.. And we all know how it ended.

    “As I said, a balanced view doesn’t hurt. But of course im sure you’re going to paste more angles of Xhaka going to ground because it’s all you’re interested in”

    That is a bit judgmental, but to set the record straight, I am all for balanced view. but in his case Balance shifts towards he being not good enough as DM.

    “Yea Xhaka was the only player in the premier league that made a mistake leading to a goal last season. ”

    I never said that.

    “Wonderful Ashwin …you brought quotes from one mistake leading to one goal, superb work”

    If you look at the entire season, his mistakes leading up to us conceeding goals are not limited to the game at old trafford. his defensive play is a liablity and others have to work extra hard to cover up his mistakes. which is not fair.

  5. gonsterous

    so we are back to having 4 or 5 pages on every blog. Pedro must be loving the traffic. Top post as always… one of the best Arsenal blogs, got some rotten eggs in the comment section but that makes the whole thing livelier…

  6. Ashwin gunner

    Receeding

    “Not everyone is self motivated. ”

    Yup.. if 350K per week doesnt motivate him, then he should be thrown out. Footballers are paid exorbitant salaries to play the f8king game.

  7. gonsterous

    we do need a santi or a rosicky 2.0… someone who can take the ball and just move forward. unlike wilshere who trips over someone or loses the ball…

  8. TonyD

    So Poch signs a new deal and wants to buy Martial, Saha and Sessegson for £100million while building their new stadium.

    We have what? £50 million?

    Very happy with Emery but we’ll need more if we’re going to give him the chance to compete.

  9. Ashwin gunner

    TitsMcGee

    ssshhh!!! AKB’s are still out there in numbers. if people can get pissed of on calling Xhaka shit, imagine what a meltdown it will be if Arsene is called anything other than god

  10. Pierre

    Marko
    “Question, is it more impressive to notch an assist than it is a chance created?Is it more impressive”

    I presume you’re being deliberately stupid, if not, then I’m afraid you come into the stupid category.

    The chance created only becomes an assist if the the striker or whoever scores from the chance created so obviously there is no difference.

    If a player puts another through on goal and he waste the chance then that is the fault of the striker, the creator has done his job.

    we have someone in the team that has created the 3rd most chances in Europe last season, despite apparently having a bad season and being on holiday for a good part of it, but the stupid Arsenal fans (yes marko that’s you amongst many) think he is surplus to requirements and his chances created stats are meaningless.

    Now, if you were saying he Shouldn’t be in the side because he will not be able to press the ball and win the ball back under the current manager then fair enough because if you are playing a pressing game there must be no weak links…. We will see if he can adapt his game for the new manager.

    Marko… You have made a lot of comparisons on here over the last day as to why creating chances for your team mates is not impressive and all of them are stupid.

  11. Terraloon

    Tony D
    No doubt Spurs have eyes on the players you mention but I doubt £100 million would but Saha and Martial let alone Seggeson . In the current market Martial is worth circa £60 million with I suspect a slightly higher valuation for Saha.
    So that then comes down to do Spurs have £100 million and the answer probably is no but and here’s the big but they have surplus players in their squad who can be sold for decent money . Players like Rose who probably have greater worth than any of the players that Arsenal are no doubt a looking to sell,& can sell without having a negative impact on the squad.
    No matter how you package it Arsenal really don’t have a lot of surplus players with value Spurs and Chelsea to mention just two of the top 6 clearly do.
    I mention Chelsea because they alone have the ability to sell significant numbers of players to generate the sort of cash that’s needed when you want to release funds for as meaningful rebuild .
    I saw an article on line that without even blinking they are in a position to raise £150 million from just selling the likes of Batshuayi, Zouma, Rahman, Van Ginkel and Kennedy. All players they had out on loan and probably will never be called back . There also seems to be suggestions that Drinkwater , Cahill and even Cesc could be sold .for another chunk it seems highly likely that from their much talked about loan army and not good enough squad players they will be able to fund a rebuild with ease. Like Arsenal I suspect they will bulk their squad with academy products but when you consider in players like Abraham, Loftus-Cheek Cheek and Ampadu they have three full internationals at their dispaosal .
    When Arsenal sat back basking in the media glory of having a large wedge in the bank to a degree Spurs but definitely Chelsea invested in players some with a value of a couple of million, some with a lot more worth now the value in the market has grown like topsy they can raise funds whereas the bean counters at Arsenal have been caught cold by inflated market.

  12. Graham62

    The problem with Wilshere is he is not, and never has been, a naturally gifted athlete.

    His bandy- leggedness, a contributory factor to his numerous injuries, nullifies his speed and power.

    It is noticable he has lost a yard of pace, although in small spaces he still has the ability to lose his man and create space.

    Southgate obviously felt Wilshere’s physical limitations would be detremental to Englands needs.

    I sort of agree with him.

  13. tee

    kc
    May 24, 2018 23:58:26
    It’s definitely worth seeing how Ramsey performs under Emery before deciding his future at Arsenal. It’s totally possible a good coach is all he’s been missing. Xhaka needs to be binned off asap and a proper DM brought in to replace. I chalka up Xhaka as a bad buy.

    double standard.

    what applies to Ramsey same applies to Xhaka and the other players. the favouritism sensed in the above comment is what I dislike. if you are going to keep bashing Xhaka while shielding Ramsey (comparing players of other teams to xkaka), then same should be done to Ramsey. compare the top 5 teams’ CMs to Ramsey and let see how good he is. he can’t even lace the boot of Herrera.

    anything other than this then I will take it that you are nothing short of the man you detest.

  14. Pierre

    Graham62
    Agree with your appraisal of Wilshere.. Doubts remain.. For Wilshere to be effective he has to be 100% fit and play totally commited, without that he is on the fringes of the game and the game passes him by.

  15. Jamie

    Have to say it is really refreshing going into a new season with such change afoot. However I do feel we are lacking in the creativity department at the moment with cazorla going. We only really have ozil as a ball player and he’s inconsistent at best.
    Agree that we need to sign a midfielder and a keeper
    I feel we are over stocked in central defence and I truly want to see what emery can do with the talent at his disposal. For me it would be a waste of money buying a new centre half unless we can get decent money for Mustafi who I also feel can be turned into a really commanding centre half under the right guidance. He’s very vocal too which is rare for an arsenal centre half these days. Sometimes he looks unbeatable so for me that’s a question of consistency. We do need a central midfielder as xakha just has not worked and I’d like to see another playmaker come in to dovetail with ozil and provide something of a playoff for our two strikes.

    As a footnote I’m really happy to see Perez being given an opportunity. I felt he was treated unfairly and was impressed by his work rate and ability in and around the goal.

  16. tee

    we can’t just go out there to start buying anyhow. there are some important area in the team (though no position is expendable) to fill like gk, df, dm.

    the new manager will still have to analyse the players in training to come to the right conclusion.

    this is why I believe Emery must be given at least a season to start the rebuilding process.

    who knows, he could end up bringing out the best in them cos I know the current crop of players can do better than what they have been doing. their best usually come in flash and with the right attitude and mentality and a few purchases then we will gradually become the arsenal that we all wish for.

    this is why I don’t support the pull him down syndrome on show here.

    any player that finds it difficult to adjust to the new tactics will surely be shipped out – be you Ramsey, ozil, Xhaka or anyone. no one player is bigger than the club.

  17. gambon

    London Gunner said the smartest thing thats been said on here in 6 months.

    “Arsenal fans are useless hipster wankers”

    Absolutely true.

  18. tee

    gambon
    May 25, 2018 09:49:10
    London Gunner said the smartest thing thats been said on here in 6 months.
    “Arsenal fans are useless hipster wankers”
    Absolutely true.

    it could the smartest to you. it’s an opinion not fact.

    if it’s absolutely true from, your perspective, then hope you know you are included?

  19. Graham62

    gambon

    New chapter, new beginnings.

    We should all be behind Emery, irrespective of past attitudes and beliefs.

    Come on, we’ve got a new club………………..AT LAST!

  20. kc

    tee,
    I’m allowed to have my opinion about each of the two different players. Take your double standard pc horse shit and shove it up your sjw wanna be arse. That’ll be the last response you get from me troll. Now go give your fuck buddy Charlie a quick reach around.

  21. gambon

    Graham

    Im 100% behind Emery, I was saying how good he was weeks ago when all the hipsters were wanking off over Arteta.

    Also happy for all the players to be given a second chance (as long as we sign a GK and CB) before Emergy starts making changes.

  22. tee

    Graham62

    I think wishere’s case is a little complicated. though there are news that he is ready to sign a new deal but it’s just what it is – mere news.

    he could be useful or not depending on Emery’s perspective of him but my major concern is his injury record. from the way he plays – despite playing like 30 something matches, i still kinda feel he is not totally fit and sometimes shows signs of breaking down.

    his talent is there for all to see but his body seems to be letting him down.

  23. Bob N16

    Coming from a different angle, if I were Wilshere I would be getting my agent to find me a club that would want to play him AM and doesn’t play a serious pressing game.

  24. Micheal

    One point abundantly clear is that the re-building job at Arsenal is far too large to be completed in a single season.

    Major issues:
    Squad depth, inadequate players, too many contracts being run down, urgent need to improve tactics, lack of discipline, etc
    Poor scouting regime
    Youth development – urgent overhaul needed.

    I am sure everyone else have issues which need addressing. But do not expect all the problems to be solved at a stroke and I hope the manager is given a decent period of time to do the job.

  25. Dissenter

    TonyD
    “So Poch signs a new deal and wants to buy Martial, Saha and Sessegson for £100million while building their new stadium.We have what? £50 million”

    Spuds have lots of players with high transfer fees.
    They buy good talent young and have a manager who’s improving them.
    Alderweireld and Rose could easily fetch them £100 million this summer.
    All the while we are buying expensive 29 year old players with NO resale value.
    We’ve been run poorly in the past 3-4 years.
    WE STAGNATED VERY BADLY.

  26. Biggles

    >>Relieable Sauce
    >>May 24, 2018 17:48:42
    >>
    >>Personally I don’t want a traditional DM – Makelele, Mascherano type. Or a >>deep lying playmaker either.
    >>I want to see us sign CM’s that are capable of dominating the opposition, or at >>least not being dominated or overrun by most teams.
    >>
    >>Viera was great because he could receive a ball anywhere and under any
    >>pressure and had the physical and defensive ability to get the ball back when >>possession was lost.
    >>Arsenal have nothing that comes close, our current set of CM’s don’t bring >>half of what he did to the team.

    >Marc
    >May 24, 2018 17:53:32
    >
    >Relieable Sauce
    >
    >Umm if only every other team on the planet didn’t want that “player” of which >there are only ever a handful of.

    ——————————————————————————————–

    Obviously midfielders of Vieira’s calibre are few and far between, but it doesn’t mean that there aren’t players close to that available. Our scouting in recent years has been terrible, we’ve not unearthed any “gems” for years. I’m delighted with Auba, but it’s not like he wasn’t known to every club in the world.

    For instance, I crowed a few years back about Victor Wanyama, before he moved to Southampton. We could have had him for about £10m. That’s a bargain these days and he’d be more useful than most of our midfielders.

    If that’s what I can find, being an armchair scout and mere fan, imagine what a proper scout should be able to unearth. It’s just in the last few years, Wenger’s approach to signings appears to have been the “Random Article” button on wikipedia.

  27. Dissenter

    Who approved the 350k weekly wage for Ozil?
    No Europa league team running in “self-sufficiency “ tshould pay that much money to any player
    Where else was he going to go to earn that type of money?

  28. Biggles

    The Ozil deal was insane. I’d have kept him at perhaps £100-150k, because then he’s expensive, but could still be a squad player for certain games, and obviously as a contract renewal, there’s no fee.

    But at £350k, you kind of expect him to be an automatic starter, which isn’t a good thing because 1) it’ll make him complacent and 2) it makes us more predictable and 3) Ozil just isn’t the right type of player for all games. I just can’t see benching such an expensive player going down well with Kroenke.

  29. Buckhurst Gun

    “Arsenal fans are useless hipster wankers”

    Is that like a general assessment of how we are in every aspect of our lives or ?

    I can be a wanker sometimes , but I have my uses. I’m not a complete hipster as I can’t really grow a massive beard but I do try and dress a bit more shoreditch like – not quite Hector style but a splash of quirky

  30. raptora

    Dissenter,
    I’m not an optimist re Diamond Eye and Sanllehi. I know that this is I think the first window they are going to actually work together, but last summer was a disgrace, last winter was a disgrace. Get Auba in the summer and we do much better in the season. No need for Lacazette in that situation. Move Sanchez to City or PSG for big money and go for a real talented winger, not Mikki. No GK transfer, no CB, no CDM transfer, no real winger? I am not impressed with their work thus far at all. Whatever some of the guys say we don’t need Lacazette if we have Auba, we should have kept Giroud in that situation. Mikki has a couple of years left at best and he ain’t moving no trees either + he’s too similar to Ozil. Mavropanos looks a real talent so hopefully that’s where Diamond Eye gets to hit the bullseye.

  31. Rambo Ramsey

    Indeed. I remember Arsenal fans laughing at the wages Rooney was getting in his final years at United. This is the same.

    Ozil is not even in the top 30 best players in the League and we’ve made him one of the best paid players in the league.

  32. Bob N16

    Agreed Micheal, improvement should be fairly immediate but it’ll surely be a couple of years or so before we see full impact of changes.

    One area of improvement I’m not sure about is our Youth set up. There appears to be a few coming through..is this in spite of the system or because of it?

  33. China

    I’m so glad that emery has given these ambitious speeches.

    Wenger was able to talk the talk but was under minimal requirement to walk the walk because he had endless good will from his supporters which were a substantial part of the fan base (including Stan).

    This time emery arrives with a good reputation but the club doesn’t owe him anything. He didn’t give us the invincibles and can’t play a victim card about having won us this or that and being a poor old man.

    He’s come in. Set good expectations and will be hop fully be held to reasonable account.

    The club and fans must give him a fair shout and not expect the world over night but as long as the fans feel like he’s trying the right things and the direction is correct I think they will rally behind him even if things aren’t perfect

  34. Biggles

    Auba says he prefers to play with a strike partner, not as a lone striker. What would he know though…

    I agree that Mikki and Ozil are similar, but I actually prefer Mikki to Ozil. Thing is, whilst it’s perhaps not the best deal ever and I doubt we’d have signed him in an open market, the circumstances were about trying to extract something useful instead of losing Sanchez for nothing. Which I think made the best of a bad situation.

    The ballsup though was that having signed Mikki, we didn’t just hand Ozil one of those Ikea brown cardboard boxes with the handle cutouts and attached lid and say “have a nice life at Galatasaray”.

  35. gambon

    Buckhurst

    No, specifically football hipsters.

    Arsene has conditioned the fans to think :

    – Shit goalkeepers are fine
    – Centre backs dont have to be tall or fast
    – Pace and power in general arent important
    – No need for defending in midfield
    – Team full of kids is ideal
    – Managers without ANY experience are optimal
    – Get as many #10s in the team as possible
    – Sideways passes in midfield are more important than scoring goals

  36. Bamford10

    Raptora

    I’m not sure anything prior to January can be pinned on the new team (Mislintat, Sanllehi). Prior to that, Wenger was still very much in charge and Sanllehi hadn’t even arrived.

    But yes, they are going to need to be very smart in the next 12-24 months, as much work is needed to improve the squad and we don’t have unlimited funds.

    First steps: new GK, CB and CDM.

  37. Bamford10

    Biggles

    That’s not how I interpreted Auba’s remark. I think he was saying that he wants to be played centrally (though he’ll play wide if necessary) and that given he and Lacazette could be deployed together through the center, he thinks that might be a good option.

    For me it’s obvious: unless we’re playing with two up top, Auba should start as the CF. Lacazette is a back-up for me, and Aubameyang is better through the center than when played wide.

  38. Marko

    https://talksport.com/football/premier-league-201718-players-most-chances-created-season-revealed-and-ranked-180321276292?p=1

    See Pierre you little weirdo the whole chances created stats is deceptive its not something that you hold up and make a case for the player having a great season. I mean DeBruyne had a great season not because of the chances he created but because of the goals and assists he made and the influence he had. I mean Pascal Gross was 5 behind Ozil 5 and no one’s talking about him being one of the best creative players in Europe. Cesc was third in the list and no one is implying that he had a great season he was bit part. It’s a deceptive stat is what I’m saying. Jack Butland made the most saves last season so by your logic wouldn’t that make him the best or one of the best keepers in the league? Despite DeGea having the most clean sheets. Again a deceptive stat a pointless stat. Chances created compared to assists and shots saved compared to actual clean sheets which is more important? Look you love the lad and don’t see a problem and that’s okay

  39. raptora

    Well imagine that last summer we sell Sanchez for big money – 60m pounds at least. We invest the money for Lacazette in Auba. With the Sanchez + Chambo + Theo + Coq + Gibbo + Gabriel + Chezzer = 170m pounds!!!

    We could have bought Griezmann for ~80-100m, say Mahrez 40-55m and CDM for ~20-30m. Fk off Ozil at the end of this season instead of making that outrageous stupidity to double his wage.

  40. Biggles

    “I think everybody knows that I like playing through the centre. I hope that we can play with two attackers — that would be ideal. But if the new coach needs me on the wing, there’s no problem.”

    Maybe you’re right Bamford, I suppose it’s a little ambiguous. I definitely do think he’s better centrally, it would be stupid to drop mega money on one of the most lethal strikers in the world and then play him as a winger.

    That said, I don’t think we score anywhere near enough goals and that we should play with two up front. Maybe not in every game, but in the majority of league games and against lowly opposition in cups.

  41. Marko

    Auba says he prefers to play with a strike partner, not as a lone striker. What would he know though…

    He hasn’t played with a strike partner for quite some time. At Dortmund he had two wingers either side of him and at St Etienne he played a lone striker as well I’m sure. He’s more making a case for being the lone striker I believe. Definitely makes no sense to play your best CF on the wings going forward. He’s 29 as well why mess about

  42. Bamford10

    Mesut Ozil is a talented player, but the “chance created” stat is bullshit. Unless I’ve misunderstood something, any pass that is followed by a shot on goal is counted as a “chance created”. As gambon pointed out, this means, one, that every corner kick that Ozil takes and an Arsenal player gets his head on is counted as a “chance created”; and two, as gambon also pointed out, the stat does not account for the quality of the chance. If I pass the ball to Xhaka, who winds up and shoots from 35 yards out, that’s counted as a “chance created,” just as much as if I slip Aubameyang through with a clever, incisive pass.

    Given that Ozil has been allowed to play largely in the final third, and given that he only looks to pass and doesn’t look to shoot, one would expect him to have lots of “chances created,” i.e., passes that lead to someone else shooting or heading on goal.

    But this really doesn’t mean vey much.

    And again, look at his assists and goals versus Ramsey last season. Ramsey gets pilloried on here, yet he had to play 18 box to 18 box and he had much better attacking stats than Mesut Ozil.

    As I said previously, Emery may be able to light a fire under Ozil, but the basic criticism of him here has been correct for some time.

  43. Marko

    As I said previously, Emery may be able to light a fire under Ozil

    Yeah let’s put this to bed right now players on the verge of 30 years old don’t start to put in more of an effort especially after their workrate has been questionable for quite some time years in fact. I actually used to really like him loved his signing originally but his consistency and big game influence became a problem and then the last two years its like he stopped caring. It’s no excuse because even though Sanchez didn’t want to be here either bar the last 6 months he was at Arsenal he put in more of an effort compared to Ozil. Look considering this team needs proper wingers and widemen and someone like Fekir is way younger and better and seemingly available I’d sell Ozil in a heartbeat

  44. gambon

    Lets be honest, Ozil was kicked out of Madrid for being a lazy bottler, and since then has completely given up. He basically retired at 24. He just ambles around the pitch notching the odd good game against relegation fodder.

    He tried at Arsenal for about 2 months. Well actually until he won that penalty against Bayern. He took a shit penalty then never tried again for Arsenal.

  45. HighburyLegend

    Seems that Rabiot might want to leave psg…
    But Ancelotti has an eye on him.

    By the way, Didier Roustan, a famous french journalist, said recently that Napoli tried to convince Emery before signing Carlo, just saying… :-)

  46. Leedsgunner

    I’ve been positive about Özil in the past and tried to look for the best in him but last season was a great disappointment. Apart from a couple of games, he rarely stepped up to the plate. Really not what you expect from your top earner, and supposed world class player.

    I hope Emery has the measure of him and brings out the best in him… because honestly we cannot allow Mesut’s Arsenal journey end like Arshavin’s did. For a club that continually complains about how it can’t afford to compete, it would be a disaster if Özil was allowed to wimper out pathetically on a free.

    If Emery can’t maximise his skills. sell him next summer. We need to be ruthless, no more of this sentimentality that painted the vision of the previous manager.

  47. HighburyLegend

    “I hope Emery has the measure of him and brings out the best in him…”

    –>> the bench for a while ?? Could be good for him.

  48. Graham62

    One of Emery’s biggest tasks will be to disentangle all the cloned players at the club.

    Wenger created a mindset and brand of player that were all too similar in their actions and methods. Arsenal need diversity. They need leaders/winners/communicators. Players that personify what winning is all about.

    I’ve always felt that Wenger nullified the players abilities to communicate and motivate. Similar to Bould, he put constraints on them, which ultimately was detrimental to the teams progression.

    No more head dropping/ hand on hips scenarios that have been evident for far too long. I want genuine commitment and focus that typified the 1996-2006 period.

    I want to see players prepared to die for the badge. Even Ozil, who’s on 350K a week, if he shows desire and a willingness to work hard, that’s all I ask.

    All I want as a fan is my team to show these attributes week in week out. Is this too much to ask?

    If Emery can change this, then maybe, just maybe, we will improve more quickly than some may think.

  49. Elmo

    Leeds

    There is simply no foreseeable way that we can sell Ozil during this contract.

    Even if he was player of the tournament at the WC and we offered him around on a free, I doubt you’d see anyone offer to take him off our hands; he’s simply on too much money for a player of his profile (30yo in October, with £55m of contract liabilities outstanding).

    We have to get the best out of him and motivate him to succeed, because the club have irrevocably made their bed with him for the next 3 years.

  50. azed

    “the bench for a while ?? Could be good for him.”

    I doubt Ozil would give two f**is about being on the bench.

    Like Gambon said, Ozil is retired. We just paying him his pension.

  51. Leedsgunner

    Guns of B

    Not spoiling for a fight, but just want to know why?

    Is he captain for his national side?

  52. qna

    Re-signing Ozil at £350k/wk times 5 fucking years was pure mismanagement. It was a reaction to losing Sanchez to United and it was some misguided way that the club thought they could limit some damage by the way the contracts of Ozil and Sanchez was managed. Ultimately this was Wenger taking the ship down with its captain and Ivan and the board watching on with no dicks.

  53. Leedsgunner

    Elmo
    Playing devil’s advocate what would you do if he has an absolute blinder at the WC, and PSG offer say £100m for him this summer? Would you stick (hoping that he is back to his best, and will be able to replicate this new form for the new manager) or twist (sell him while the going was good.)?

    If they are paying Neymar £500k per week, they won’t have problems matching his wages, although we have to concede PSG is probably the only club that can afford his wages.

    Of course there’s FFP to navigate around but just posing it as a scenerio.

  54. Tee

    Raptora, you are just dishing out figures and names as if it is that easy to sign these players. Arsenal wanted to sell sanchez to clubs outside the epl but sanchez didnt want the move cos of money. Bayern even pulled out due to sanchez’s excessive demands. Stop making laugh with your “we could have bought grizzman for €100m” statemant. You and i know he wont come to us. It is not football manager.

  55. Guns of Brixton

    Captain of the national side and has the spare key instead of his bro 😉
    Loooool

    I just think he could do it.

  56. Ashwin gunner

    Looks like our budget has gone upto 70Mil. Sell the dead wood and we would have like 90 mil to spend on new players

  57. Ashwin gunner

    I never understood the term “Step up pursuit”

    You enter into negotiation with the agent/club and come back with a binary answer.

    what the hell does the stepping up pursuit even mean. Its not like you are laying a trap to catch a absconding criminal

  58. Danish Gooner

    There are a lot of cheap spanish players and real good ones to far better then the english dross like welbeck and wilshire.Often the spansih players are superior technically and dont need a gazilllion to play for the club.

  59. Leedsgunner

    Liverpool, Real Madrid, Liverpool Real Madrid… which club do I dislike more?

    Real Madrid winning the Champions League again is just becoming dull now… and in this campaign I would say they were lucky more than deserving.

    Liverpool winning the Champion’s League, if I was a neutral obviously this is what I’d want but honestly, if they won it, we would never hear the end of it… and they would become even more attractive for new signings.

    I’m just going to skip the match.

  60. Pierre

    Graham
    “I want to see players prepared to die for the badge. Even Ozil, who’s on 350K a week, if he shows desire and a willingness to work hard, that’s all I ask.All I want as a fan is my team to show these attributes week in week out. Is this too much to ask?”

    Graham, with all respect, that’s a ridiculous statement.
    Let’s say, next season özil” dies for the badge, shows desire and a willingness to work hard ” but during the season creates next to nothing compared to last seasons 80+ chances… Is that what you and all the other özil haters want…. If so, then the lot of you are more stupid than I thought…

    Where did the dying for the badge get Stoke last season….. Relegated..

  61. Josip Skoblar

    I agree Daz. To support Real because of Zidane makes sense. A football legend who went on to win 3 ECL on the trot as coach would just be amazing. Zidane behaved like an idiot during the 2006 WC final (which probably cost France victory), but he remains a legend. That said, my all times favourite French player remains Platini… 😉

  62. gambon

    Josip

    I wouldnt touch Rabiot with a barge pole. Hes an absolute loser.

    Hope he is outcast from the french national team for life.

  63. Samesong

    s that what you and all the other özil haters want…. If so, then the lot of you are more stupid than I thought…

    Pierre you are so thick

    If anyone creates fan divide its you. You often create this us and them atmosphere when your on le grove so please tell us all what your agenda is? So what if people don’t like an Ozil or Ramsey or Xhaka does it really matter that much to you????
    You are probably the most irritating person on here even Victorious I can take much more than you. You are a sly douchebag and I don’t really care who defends you.

    We know you love Ozil
    We know you don’t rate Ramsey defensively
    We know you Loved Wenger
    We know you think the whole world’s against Arsenal
    We know you are as boring as fuck!
    We know you are just another grumpy old man at 63 that doesn’t have anything better to do then to camp on le grove all day frothing at the mouth at comments from the Utarse and Graham62 of this world!

    Come on insult me you unintelligent fool.

  64. UTarse

    Gambon,
    “I wouldnt touch Rabiot with a barge pole. Hes an absolute loser. Hope he is outcast from the french national team for life”.

    You need to get off that fence Gambon :-)

    Samesong,
    Spot on mate.

  65. Elmo

    Leeds

    If PSG came in for £25m for Ozil, let alone £100m, I’d move him on, just to get the wage off the books and a little extra cash to rebuild the spine.

    The side is unbalanced, there are too many old first team players, and experience tells us Ozil isn’t going to carry the team in the way that you’d imagine a player on £350k pw would have to at a club like Arsenal.

    He’s staying, though, so we have to get the best we can out of him.

  66. Guns of SF

    I wonder how much ozil is with to the club in other ways. For example, the ability to market and also attract others to the team. Someone said not having ozil would make it harder for others to want to play for us as he is our superstar player. What other value does he bring to us? He is on huge wages and doesn’t perform. I think that his luster is fading. He takes every set piece pretty much.

  67. Buckhurst Gun

    “Where did the dying for the badge get Stoke last season….. Relegated..”

    And where did dying for the badge get Liverpool and Man City ……

  68. Elmo

    Guns of SF

    It’s an interesting and salient point. At the time when Ozil was re-signed at £350k pw, I could understand that the decision may have been the least-worst for the club, because prestige would have been hit too hard if both Sanchez and Ozil had gone for nothing in the summer. The club would have had no brand name stars left, to go alongside an undeniable slide in competitiveness and a general negative perception of the club. In a way, re-signing Ozil was an important stand that the club had to make, for reasons of image and perception more than anything.

    Had PEA and Mkhi been bought last summer and been established at the club, thus providing a couple of big name players to build marketing around, there may have been more latitude to make Ozil a lower take-it-or-leave-it offer, or even let him go and let Ramsey or Mkhi take over at #10.

    On his day he can be great, but for anyone but 3 or 4 clubs in world football, for £350k pw the player has to be able to carry the team.

  69. TR7

    “I wouldnt touch Rabiot with a barge pole. Hes an absolute loser. Hope he is outcast from the french national team for life”

    I find it fair for a talented player to not take rejection gracefully specially when players inferior to him have been picked in French squad. I would have done the same if I were in his place.

  70. Champagne charlie

    Rabiot just starred in CM for PSG who won the domestic French treble.

    He’s well within his rights to be pissed at getting overlooked for the French national team as it’s supposed to be merit based, which it clearly isn’t.

    He’d instantly be the best CM at Arsenal so yes please to that possibility. Great player

  71. gambon

    I think its been pretty well documented that Stokes problem is no-one wanted to die for the badge.

  72. Champagne charlie

    Who was it that said the new sleeve sponsorship would be worth 1-2 mil annually?

    30 mil Euros for the three-year deal.

  73. jwl

    Today’s Guardian – Arsenal are in talks to sign Stephan Lichtsteiner on a free when his contract at Juventus expires this summer, with the right-back among Unai Emery’s targets. The 34-year-old, who is expected to captain Switzerland at the World Cup in Russia, could become the Arsenal head coach’s first signing.

  74. Pierre

    Bamford
    “Unless I’ve misunderstood something, any pass that is followed by a shot on goal is counted as a “chance created”. As gambon pointed out, this means, one, that every corner kick that Ozil takes and an Arsenal player gets his head on is counted as a “chance created “.

    Would like to point out that it’s the same criteria for every single player in Europe.

    They don’t just make the rules easier for özil to make his stats look better…

    I thought I would just make this clear as there seems to be a lot of pretty stupid people commenting on here who think the rules are made for özil and Bamford, your Comment confirms that.

  75. Champagne charlie

    Pierre

    I too found that a bit odd that the criteria for what determines a chances was deconstructed so much.

    It’s the same for everyone, and Ozil still returns numbers that identify him as an elite creator. Moan about other facets, but creating things? Odd angle.

  76. gambon

    Charlie

    I said that I really dont think the Visit Rwanda deal is more than a token amount.

    If it is a big deal then great, we need that money to compete. Im just not sure I buy it.

  77. Pierre

    CC
    Correct, their are definitely parts of his games more open to criticism than his creativity.

    If he can’t hack the pressing game that the new manager obviously plays then I have no doubt that he will struggle to get in the side…personally, I think özil will change his game accordingly as will Ramsey if he stays.

  78. gambon

    Wilshere has put a post on Instagram that hints at leaving AFC.

    Cant help but think thats best for both Arsenal and JW.

  79. Vintage Gun

    Jim Lahey

    I’m picturing the 1st day of pre season, Ozil as the man holding the coffee and Wilshere the gobby one who gets fired!

  80. Champagne charlie

    Gambon

    I won’t go into the nature of why you’d think sponsorship from the Rwandan tourist board would be meagre, but what are you talking about “you don’t buy it”?

  81. gambon

    Champagne

    I just feel common sense dictates that a country with a £300m tourist sector surely cant be spending £10m pa on a sleeve sponsorship.

    I think someone on Twitter worked out that it would be the equivalent of the UK spending £1.2bn per year on a similar sponsorship, which could never happen.

    Like I say, if it is £10m pa then great, we desperately need to get our commercial department firing properly, as we havent been doing a great job.

  82. TR7

    Lichtsteiner was at Colney holding talks with #AFC earlier today. Deal is not done yet and the next few hours will be decisive [via @fraporzio95]

    I guess the idea is to squeeze at least 12 months of football from him so that we can use our limited funds on major priority areas this summer.

  83. gonsterous

    only thing I want this season, is to see some kids grow into decent players ( if we are lucky, world class players)…

  84. Champagne charlie

    Gambon

    Dutch politicians have criticised the tourist board for negotiating such a lucrative deal with us given the aid they receive. I am appreciate the bold nature of it, but as far as marketing their tourist sector you’d be hard pressed to spend that money more wisely.

    We’re a commercial behemoth globally, and I already read figures suggesting 35 million daily views of an Arsenal shirt (dubious about the specifics there). But football marketing in general houses some of the best returns per dollar.

  85. Champagne charlie

    Tr7

    Smart move imo. Experienced leader who can competently play RB and CM at a push. Bellerin will be made to stay honest, and he fills a void of seniority that Santi left with. No qualms with a 1-2 year deal based on fitness levels

  86. TR7

    Charlie

    Yes, Jankinson is definitely on the way out, perhaps Chambers too. Ballerin will probably learn a thing or two from an experienced pro.

    P.S : Imagine Wenger signing this player, people would have lost their mind :p

  87. Ishola70

    I doubt The Licht could play CM.

    He’s a flank player. RB, RM. Probably never played CM his entire career.

    It’s just a back-up signing for Bellerin and doesn’t really put pressure on Bellerin as The Licht has lost his legs pace over time and doesn’t feature too much now for 90 minutes so definitely not one to put real pressure on Bellerin for his first team place.

  88. Vintage Gun

    “Wilshere has put a post on Instagram that hints at leaving AFC.”

    “Cant help but think thats best for both Arsenal and JW.”

    Fully agree as Wilshere routinely appears leaden legged after the 60ish min mark during games and with Emery using language such as “Hard work-Pressing and sacrifice” Jacks body will crack by Autumn.

    Let Jack go. Maitland Niles can cover Jacks output in terms of what he can bring to the squad. Bring in Juventus veteran Stephan Lichtsteiner to fight with Bellerin for a year and Maitland Niles can be a backup Midfielder plus an emergency cover at RB.