The end of Arsenal football club

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So here we are people, the end of Arsenal football club as we know it. Silent Stan Kroenke, the evilest man to walk a sports arena, has finally won out. He’s part way to driving out the white knight, Alisher Usmanov, for a whopping £600m buyout of his stake.

This is a dark day for Arsenal.

I mean, kind of.

This dramatic notion that the world is caving in because Stan K is buying up the rest of Arsenal is a little far-fetched. The morbid picture that has been painted is based on a lot of worst case scenarios.

Sure, there could be less transparency around the club, but at the same time, you have to remember a lot of the fan interaction items that were put on were out of generosity, versus some sort of legal obligation. Our family has a share, I went to most of the AGMs before I moved to America, let’s not pretend for a  second you extracted any sort of real insight from those days out. Sir Chips or Peter Hillwood would usually insult the intelligence of the peasant folk, Ivan would tell us not to believe our lying eyes, and Stan would rarely say anything. It wasn’t true governance because the fans had no real power. Not just that, Arsenal offered up additional seats for people at various fan groups because they were being nice. The club has always pushed to be as open as possible. Ivan G has sat through a lot of fan Q&As, the club has opened up its facilities for meet and greets with the staff, we have a lot of access.

I appreciate there’s a lot of love for fans owning a stake. The romantic scenes in Germany and at some clubs in Spain where the fans own the clubs in some way tugs at the heart strings. Representation at board level is a beautiful thing, and there’s no doubt that the good folk at the AST, Red Action, Black Scarf and AISA have done a lot of good in driving fan agenda items like flags at games, ticket price freezes, safe standing, and pushing Wenger to take the League Cup a little more seriously. All marvellous things.

I don’t think those things suddenly go away. If a new CEO comes in, hopefully from another football club, do you think their first move is going to be to cut fans out? I doubt it. We’re important. Why do you think Ivan has been so keen to make the transformation at Arsenal about him? He reads the internet, he hears your hot takes from you at Waitrose, he wants fans in the stadium to shout things like, ‘bloody good transition old boy’, not, ‘HOW DID YOU FUCK UP ALONSO YOU STUPID MUG HE WAS IN THE CAR.’

Usmanov stands to make a heck of a profit, there’s a lot of sadness David Dein (Arsenal’s David Cameron) jumped the gun with Kroenke, because everything would have looked a whole lot more Chelsea right now. Again though, let’s not pretend he was always the favoured oligarch to takeover. David Dein sold out in the hope of leading the club, he managed to get himself fired in the process, then flogged his shares to Usmanov in the hope that Red&White holdings would do something to elevate the club and give the manager the transfer fees he needed.

He was pilloried for that. The fans, the blogs, everyone was against a businessman that apparently did something to someone where a vat of acid was involved. Everyone hated the fact a nasty Uzbek was coming to the party. We liked the cute cowboy hat and understated humbleness of Stan K. We liked the one who ran a ‘proper’ business. Years later, we realised Stan knew how to run a business (a real estate business), but one that lacked any sort of a ambition to dominate.

The biggest disappointment about how folk like David Dein, Danny Fizsman and Nina B sold the club out, is that they moved it on to a company that looked at incremental growth over a 20 years period. Stan K makes his money with the looooooong bets. He’ll invest in property where he knows a big Walmart is going and sit on that property in the hope it blows up over the 20-year stretch. He’s not wolf on wall street. He’s not about the quick buck.

Arsenal for him has been a quite incredible investment. His original purchase of the club, when all the blocks are added sits at about £424m. The club has gone from tinpot entity at Highbury, to £1.8b monster if he buys out Alisher. He doesn’t get returns like that anywhere else. Arsenal is the equivalent of striking oil on one of his ranches 200 years ago. We are the absolute GEM for him.

So what are the main concerns?

Well, he’s taking a loan out to buy out the remaining 30%. How does he pay for that loan? It certainly won’t be out of his own pocket. He can’t do a leveraged buyout like the Glazers dropped on United (take out a loan on the club to buy the club, then use the fans to pay and club profit to pay it off), but he has a number of options to pay it off, and now he has an opaque setup he can hide the details in. His Delaware dealings, well covered by the excellent Matt Scott over the years, are murkier than a night out with Jermaine Pennant.

Putting that to one side, not a lot changes.

For you, as a fan, we’ll still be a club that’s run sensibly. We’re never going to behave aggressively in the transfer market. We’re never going to break FFP rules. The club has been built to operate under its own steam and I’d imagine that’s what it’ll do moving forward. Arsenal is boring, but remember, we’re a club that can offer up a lot of steam. We generate massive match day receipts, our commercials are moving in the right direction, and there’s huge potential at the club.

My hope is if Stan has learnt anything over the last few years, it’s that neglecting a Premier League football club by not investing in capable talent is a sure fire way to lose money on your bottom line. I know the top folk at Arsenal are embarrassed they’re not in th CL. That’s a big deal. I’m hoping that Stan is realizing first hand that running a football club is not like running a franchise. The fans are crazier, the cost of being shite is greater, the difficulty getting back to the top is harder, and not investing cash in players is elite players is an absolute fools game with a market so flush with money.

Look at the positives. We’re all happy with the backroom hires. We’re all happy with the reshaping of the squad. We’re all happy with the general direction of the club.

Stan owning another 30% makes no difference to that direction. It’s just a feelings thing. It’s just a ‘what could happen’ panic button everyone is pushing. For me, you can worry about the implications of the ‘what if’ when you’re watching the institutions of democracy being attacked. You never know who is coming in next and it’s a constant rotation of power. Stan K is going to be here for 30 more years. We’re going to be the most consistently run outfit in world sport, it’ll just be dull.

So let’s not be dramatic. Arsenal is the star in Stan’s portfolio. For him to grow that star, he has to have a competitive team. For all the major owners to move TV revenue to the next level, they have to continue to invest in the product. We’ve been doing that, our wages bill is £200m+ and we were the 3rd highest net spender in the league over the last 5 years and we’ve outspent Madrid from a net perspective since 2010. Stan needs a competitive Arsenal, so nothing is going to change on that front, the club will move on without Alisher, it’ll move on without Gazidis who has chosen to ply his trade with Milan, and it’ll move on without fans being literally invested in the club.

It’s a bland set of circumstances, but let’s not kid ourselves anyone has the best option. No ownership of a football club is romantic or ideal. Every club comes with its visa issues. Our biggest worry is that Stan is a bit boring. But overall, bar the love-in for Wenger that went on far too long, the club is pretty well run and it’s moving in the right direction.

It’s a sad day for shareholders who have to sell up, but it’s also a massive payday for them.

Stan is a safe businessman, and he’ll always be that way. The only way Arsenal make it moving forward is having the best football staff in the game, working budgets harder, and working our players smarter than anyone else.

It’s always been a struggle being an Arsenal fan, and it always will be. Let’s just enjoy the ride. x

475 Responses to “The end of Arsenal football club”

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  1. Dissenter

    Ross Barkely will wish he had stayed in Everton.
    It’s not the same club he left behind
    Theo wouldn’t be feeling that bad now, would he?

  2. Dissenter

    Receding
    They will get it right if they keep spending at this pace.
    They’ve shown they are not going to tolerate mediocrity by promptly sacking Alladyce

  3. Receding Hairline

    it remains to be seen with regards to Everton

    I want them to get it right , i want Wolves to also get it right …too many rubbish teams in the league last season for my liking, a season that was billed to be the most competitive ending up being one of the least

  4. raptora

    I think that Walcott has been Everton’s best player since he’s joined them. Speaks a ton of the difference between the two teams really.

  5. Marko

    They will get it right if they keep spending at this pace

    Everton have bought poorly unless you think Bernard on a free justifies Sigurdsson for 45 million, Keane for what 30 million, Pickford for 30 million and Richarlison for 40 million.

  6. raptora

    Walker and fellow City defender John Stones were back in full preparation for the new Premier League campaign last week, just two-and-a-half weeks after the Russian tournament finished on July 15.
    Walker revealed after their Community Shield victory over Chelsea at the weekend that manager Pep Guardiola had permitted the players to come back on Monday August 6 ahead of their opener at Arsenal, live on Sky Sports.
    Having enjoyed Premier League glory last season, Walker wants more and said: “This is a title, and I have not won many.
    “So to not be a part of this would have been stupid, for me to not want to come back. The gaffer gave me the option, he said you can either come back on 6 August after this, or you can come back and to play.
    “There is no doubt in my mind that I wanted to be here to achieve what I have achieved today. Luckily the risk paid off.
    “Come Christmas I might be saying to you that I’m absolutely knackered, but that is just football!
    “I’m not looking into the future, I take every game as it comes, and as long as I am on the pitch and playing football, that is what keeps me happy.”

    If only all players in our team had the same hunger (looking at you Ozil).

  7. raptora

    Unai Emery said: “Calum is a talented defender who has a bright future. We all believe this loan at Fulham will be an important part of his development and wish him a successful season.”

    Aka “He’s shit”.

  8. Dissenter

    Chambers will be working with a very good manager in Jokanović
    I believe it was Paulinho who
    mentioned him when we were looking for a manager. He will play man games and improve massively.

  9. Dissenter

    It seems Kroenke’s wife [The Walmart heiress] is the guarantor of his Deutsche bank loan to buy the Usmanoc portion of Arsenal.
    Maybe we will be wearing the Walmart logo on our shirt soon.

  10. Vintage Gun

    C’mon guys that £90m Lemar bid was faker than a United shirt with a cannon logo.

    We put the offer in while he was booted up ready to play for france ffs!
    Furthermore if that offer was “Real” then why not revisit in the Jan window and why did we have to kill Ollie G, Teeehooo, and Le Coq, (sanchez was a swap) to fund Auba?

    The math don’t add up… My calculator says 80110X

  11. Paulinho

    “Considering all the doubts with our defense i still will not mind Nzonzi being brought in. Make us hard to beat”

    The same way Krychowiak, Livermore, and Jacob made West Brom hard to beat eh?

    Let’s have a nice stodgy midfield of N’Zonzi, Torreira, Xhaka for a nice porridge midfield. Solid and stodgy and ‘hard to beat’.

  12. Vintage Gun

    Whoever mentioned Ross Barkley is typing from a witness protection safe house.
    However, if Ramsey was to leave (unlikely now) for the right price i’d have a bit of Loftus Cheeks.

  13. Wallace

    Paulinho

    “Considering all the doubts with our defense i still will not mind Nzonzi being brought in. Make us hard to beat”

    The same way Krychowiak, Livermore, and Jacob made West Brom hard to beat eh?Let’s have a nice stodgy midfield of N’Zonzi, Torreira, Xhaka for a nice porridge midfield. Solid and stodgy and ‘hard to beat’.

    yes, agreed.

  14. Receding hairline

    As opposed to a midfielder who doesn’t actually play in midfield and has a grand return of 7 league goals last season to show for his “rare adventurous,” style of midfield play.

    Ramsey is a rare footballer if you listen to the Pompous Paulinho yet no one is breaking down doors to sign him. Everyone believes they can do better, he is only a last resort

  15. Paulinho

    Funny thing is receding with his one-foot-in one-foot-out style of posting will make a point of stating that he never said he didn’t rate Ramsey if Ramsey stays and carries on his good form from last year.

    Typical fence-sitting bullshit. Can never be wrong.

  16. Dissenter

    “Whoever mentioned Ross Barkley is typing from a witness protection safe house”
    Now I have to go board up my windows lol

  17. Wallace

    Receding Hairline

    “Are u agreeing we offer Ramsey 350k a week Wallace?”

    nope, would rather we keep him, but think he’s gone at this point. it was Paulinho ridiculing the idea of adding another bruiser in midfield that i was in agreement with.

  18. Dissenter

    Lucky Alisson Becker
    He is no loner wearing the toga of “most expensive goal keeper”.
    Another overrated sap has that target on his back now.

  19. LINP

    It is clear that our CB’s are not good enough. If Stan Kroenke wants to calm down the fans, he has to invest in a decent CB, not another slow and over the hill type like Papastathopoulos.
    I am waiting to see what’s going to happen in the next two days. If the board doesn’t improve our CB, it means that Stan Kroenke will only interest in taking money out of the club to pay off his investment. Arsenal will become one of the mid-table team. That’s sad.

  20. Guns of SF

    Papas talks about old school defending – not because he really believes it but because he is slow as molasses LOL

  21. Paulinho

    Not hugely against N’Zonzi per se – he’s a good player – but scoffing at the idea you automatically become more ‘hard to beat’ by filling midfield with defensive midfielders. Those deeper-lying midfielders have to have some type of offensive chemistry to keep the opposition honest themselves, otherwise you just become a boxer covering up the ropes.

    Maybe harder to score against, but that’s different than hard to beat. Ask CSKA Moscow how easy it was to defend’s Ramsey’s ‘mythical great runs’.

  22. Receding hairline

    Yea CSKA Moscow.. That great European powerhouse. Athletic Madrid on the other hand had no issues dealing with those runs. Nor did most of the teams we faced away from home in the league.

    But hey Mhki,Auba,Ozil and Lacazette will be lost without Ramsey. Woeful performance after woeful performance is what will follow and possibly relegation

  23. Ishola70

    Torreira is being a bit under-rated I think regarding his overall play.

    Got a decent range of passing, can take a setpiece. Just because he likes defending and putting his foot in doesn’t make him just a bruiser.

    Him buzzing around defensively and offensively in front of N’Zonzi is a far better idea than keeping Xjaka as deepest midfielder or even worse bringing him further into central midfield. There will be car crashes with Xjaka further up in the centre traffic you’ll see.

  24. Michael24

    Simple question.

    How many of the worlds top 50 footballers would want to play for Mourinho?

    Money aside, how many?

    If they love the game, I would say none.

  25. Paulinho

    Seem to remember Ramsey making a run into the box and nearly scoring with a header at the end of the first game. He didn’t score though, so I suppose in your simplistic view of football that means he didn’t trouble them.

  26. Paulinho

    “Chelsea are moving in for Fekir”

    A player that plays as a deeper-lying forward is relevant to Ramsey how?

    If you had mentioned Kovavic you might have had a point.

  27. Receding hairline

    You can send them that headed miss video as well Paulinho …that should be worth a few millions on the transfer fee as well

    Keep kidding yourself you have a unique view of football..its very amusing

  28. Wallace

    Ishola

    “Got a decent range of passing, can take a setpiece. Just because he likes defending and putting his foot in doesn’t make him just a bruiser.Him buzzing around defensively and offensively in front of N’Zonzi is a far better idea than keeping Xjaka as deepest midfielder…”

    agree that Torreira has more to his game than just the defensive side, but don’t think N’Zonzi would make a better partner for him than Xhaka. maybe Mourinho & Simeone might, but they are far and away the most cautious & defence-minded of Europe’s big coaches right now.

  29. Ishola70

    How do you see Xjaka getting on this season Wallace?

    Would you prefer to see him in the deep position he has been playing or brought more into centre midfield than before?

    I noticed in the latest friendly he was dropping deepest of the two many times still where he feels safe.

    I don’t really want to see him in a flux about dropping deep or pushing up. He’s a headache as it is.

  30. Paulinho

    Receding – You sound really bitter, you judge everyone by your own limitations and then get really angry when they think differently and then get proven correct.

  31. London gunner

    Let’s be honest with ourselves we are so looking for positives right now that we are being abit naive.

    We havent bought well by long shot and our team is miles from being a class functioning unit.

    Liverpool new additions Allison keita and fabinho shaqiri are much better than our additions.

    Add to the fact mane and salah firminho shit all over our attack.

    Add to the fact that we have the worst defense in the top 6.

    Emery still has a lot to do. Really bizarre our cbs signings we have bought poorly

  32. Emiratesstroller

    I will be surprised if Ramsey will leave Arsenal in this transfer window.

    I believe as I suggested previously that the agent who opened his own agency in January and has only one decent client [Ramsey] has been pushing the club for a massive and unrealistic hike in the player’s wages plus promoting his own self interest

    .

  33. Wallace

    Ishola

    I see him alongside Torreira at the base of the midfield. the deeper of the two, dictating the play when we have the ball. I think Emery & Torreita will be good for him.he’ll have to play consistently well or Guendouzi will be pushing him very hard.

  34. Dissenter

    I would be more excited with Mina coming in for 28 million than Papa for 17 milion.

    ..and to think we had to wait forever for Papa deal to get finalized.
    Mislintat was for his buddies at BVB a favor or just paving the way for his return back here in the future.

    Papa- the molasses man

  35. Ishola70

    If he has to be in the team then I agree with you Wallace basically he plays in the same position as he has been before.

    Those who thought it was a good idea to have the DM play mostly behind him well that is not a good notion. Having Xjaka central more times will just expose his weaknesses off the ball.

    Torreira will be doing his defensive duties mostly in front of Xjaka.

  36. Receding hairline

    Lol…very amusing fellow this Paulinho ..you really take what happens here very seriously.. Little wonder you go digging up very old posts. Its opinions ..at the end of the day no one really cares as long as the team does well.

    You on the other hand wants a medal anytime you post. You are moniker go me so no way enough to make me bitter…limitations pfft..I am not a football scout nor do I take myself as seriously as you do

  37. Dissenter

    If Ramsey succeeds in manipulating his contract negotiations beyond Thursday, then his agent has massively succeeded for him.
    He will be looking at a hefty income from the Bosman next summer.

    I wonder why fans like to go after agents.
    The agent cannot do anything unless the player sanctions it.

  38. Stuart

    Good points. A lot of noise from people who don’t know anything and just like catastrophising. For some reason the football world is obsessed with celebrity managers and owners these days. It’s about players and always will be. And any remaining shareholder that moans can piss off. They will have made a fucking massive profit on this and most of them had the good fortune to have Daddy to buy them and pass them down or come from a wealthy background in order to buy one originally. There’s no poor salt of the earth story there. I’m sick of all the shit about the behind the scenes stuff at Arsenal, can we just focus on the playing side for the first time about 25 years?

  39. Danny

    So we made sure Chambers had a very good pre season so he can be fit and ready for the start of the season……..to play for fuckin’ Fulham.
    We never learn.

  40. Paulinho

    Receding You’re the one that continually brings up my posts and seem to have a major issue with my opinions – that incidentally turn out to be right about 99% of the time – so I would suggest you’re the one that is taking things too seriously.

    I just put opinions out there in an unapologetic tone, and you can’t help boiling over at the temerity of it lol. “Lets leave it to Emery” is your stock response when the discussion becomes too nuanced for you.

  41. gambon

    If Ramsey doesn’t extend before Thursday, I hope the club bin him and make him train with the U10s.

    Clubs will be extremely wary about signing an injury prone player that hasn’t played a game for 12 months.

    At some point the club will have to do it in order that players know they can’t just run down their contracts.

  42. Guns of SF

    Gambon I doubt emery will be that ruthless. In fact, I think he is being too nice.
    Our team is too large- what happened to the early selling, to raise $ for new additions? why the delay? Now we are stuck again…..

  43. Marko

    it was Paulinho ridiculing the idea of adding another bruiser in midfield that i was in agreement with.

    We currently have one in Torreira. One. Guendouzi isn’t really a DM and Elneny is pony so once again one.

    Maybe harder to score against, but that’s different than hard to beat. Ask CSKA Moscow how easy it was to defend’s Ramsey’s ‘mythical great runs’.

    Ask Liverpool how relevant Ramsey’s runs were last season when they were waltzing through our midfield with him nowhere to be seen. Seem to remember at Anfield in particular he went over to the bench for a chat while Liverpool scored yet another goal. Genius from Ramsey

  44. gambon

    Guns of SF

    I think Emery only wanted to sell the dross.

    I don’t think he wanted to sell any established players yet.

    Next summer will be more ruthless, and I would expect to see some upgrades brought in for players that don’t cut it.

    Wouldn’t surprise me to see the likes of Mustafi, Chambers, Elneny, Xhaka, Ozil in the firing line.

  45. PhD2020

    Ramsey is a joke of a player.

    Signed in what period-2008…Roll forward to 2018..One good year in a decade?
    Held to ransom over a £200k-£300k p/w contract?

    -Can we replace?-Yes
    -Injury Prone?-Yes
    -Disciplined in his position?-No
    -Can he last a full season consistently-injury free over a decade?-No
    -Can we find better for less wages,less injury prone and consistent?-Yes
    -Can he help to win us BPL?-No(We’ve had him for a decade-injury,or not)
    -Can he improve us?-No..We’ve had him for a decade..We finished 6th last season,5th the previous season,etc,etc..

    In short,get rid ASAP.

  46. salparadisenyc

    Over the years Paulinho’s a part of the core of solid contributors making this site what it is.

    Fucking quality.

  47. Paulinho

    Marko – I’ve already gone over that several times last season. The problem in that game was the team not being on the same wavelength. Ramsey was being his usual pro-active ballsy self, making a rampaging run through the middle after a couple of minutes and playing in Welbeck, who ballooned over the bar, but the defence sat too deep and were too passive – resulting in a massive gap between defence and attack. In the FA Cup final against Chelsea Ramsey did exactly the same thing, but the defence stepped up with him and we were compact and pressed high as a team.

    A certain Swiss was a complete disaster in that game by the way but of course ‘tabloid analysis’ kicked in, like it did at Stoke not long after, and it was a case of blaming the midfielder who was furthest forward like he was the root of all evil.

  48. WengerEagle

    Tend to agree with London Gunner. Has been a pretty uninspiring window if you take Torreira out of it. Disappointed in our defensive signings and our lack of offensive ones.

    Wenger did leave Emery a right mess to be fair and one window was never going to be enough to sort it out.

  49. WengerEagle

    Do seem to remember Paulinho saying that he would be on board with letting Ramsey go as long as we went for a serious replacement.

    Which shows he isn’t married to Ramsey, just rates him out of the current bunch which I agree with to a large extent.

  50. Receding hairline

    Eagle

    I think we fans are not really appreciating the Leno signing. They aren’t that many keepers around and getting one with years of top flight experience for the price we did should not be sniffed at

  51. Paulinho

    WE – Exactly, any praise of him is largely influenced by the rest of the players in our squad.

    As I said though, such distinctions are obviously beyond the likes of Receding, who think any analysis beyond the superficial is a sign of pretentiousness and pomposity. As I said, judging everyone by the own little box he fits himself into. He’s put himself out there with Sokratis though, he might get a Le Grove medal if he flops.

  52. salparadisenyc

    I find myself agreeing with London Gunner for once as well.

    Once I shed the excitement of Wenger out, a new hierarchy in place making actual decisions based on something other that Wengerism’s, Emery in (which I was mediocre on at the time) but came to terms with.

    Were left with fact we have rebuilt the spine well before deadline day which is surreal, but not really as solid as i’d of hoped. Notably with the back 5.

    This point in window always hoping for last bit of heroics, think its outs from here, Dembele best rumor that can be spun to click and thats that.

    Top four reachable, no more.

    That said, two potential gems in Torreira and Guendouzi but we’ve left a couple blinds spots and this loan business of Chambers is as Wenger as it gets.

  53. PhD2020

    Ramsey,has had almost a decade to showcase his stuff.

    He is certainly not a top game player,that influences games at the elite level.
    We are not talking about FA Cup games(finals) here.But about,reaching levels of RM,BM,BARCA status.Heck,he’s not even reaching those levels at Premier League level-in terms of Arsenal not competing for the EPL/BPL for 15 years,despite him being at Arsenal for 10 years..

    Give me a break..Yet-Ozil get’s untold horse manure for the 5 years he has been at the club?Let’s be fair and just in our measurement of players.

  54. Marko

    The problem in that game was the team not being on the same wavelength. Ramsey was being his usual pro-active ballsy self

    Look he was a CM at the base of a midfield two we were a couple goals down and HE was over talking to the bench while Liverpool scored yet again. He wasn’t being ballsy or pro active he was literally being a dumb cunt. Yeah Ramsey would be great if you only focused on the offensive side of his game and don’t think of him as a CM but it’s the other side of his game that he is severely lacking in that’s the problem and it’s that side that we need in midfield. I haven’t even mentioned the tracking back in other big games.

  55. gambon

    WengerEagle

    Yeah I think Emery walked into a real mess and to some extent this summer was about tidying things up rather that making huge signings.

    If you look at the issues Wenger left

    – Poor quality goalkeepers
    – Lack of quality and numbers in defence
    – No defensive midfielders whatsoever
    – Loads of dross players in and on the fringes of the squad
    – Lack of wide players, loads of central players
    – Poor strategic and tactical structure, particularly without the ball
    – Lack of effort and intensity, both in training and games
    – Kids being badly integrated, played out of position and moved in and out of the squad

    I think Emerys first plan was to solve the obvious issues and I think he’s done most of them.

    Our squad is the right size (once Ospina, Jenkinson, Perez, Campbell are gona). Apart from the wide/central players issue we have the right balance. We signed a GK, CB, LB and 2 DMs. Training seems much more intense and fun, the kids are being played in the right positions. We are clearly building a pressing game and it’s good to see we aren’t leaving anyone isolated in deep midfield.

    I think Chambers going on loan is strange and maybe points to the next stage kicking in.

    I think we are probably accepting that we are too weak at CB.

    The next stage will be the upgrading of already good players, rather than just selling off dross.

  56. WengerEagle

    RH

    True and look, wasn’t a big Leno enthusiast pre-signing myself but he looks good and he’s got lots of potential.

    Outfield-wise it’s been a drab effort though recruitment wise.

  57. Marko

    In saying all that he was our best midfielder of the last couple years but that’s honestly not saying much considering who our other midfielders were

  58. Marko

    WE he’s married and I assume has a kid and he’s talking about high fiving another twat during threesomes. I mean it’s not smart

  59. Paulinho

    Feels like it will take teams quite a few seasons to get the hang of this new transfer deadline.

    Can’t see us signing anyone of note because everyone is leaving everything too late.

  60. Cesc Appeal

    ‘Top four reachable, no more.’

    I think that is the aim though.

    Wenger left an absolute mess, out of the UCL for two years, damaged our standing in the commercial and football world, bloated squad with bloated wages and an inability to sell to raised funds and a squad comprised of footballers who through lack of coaching are incompetent on the pitch.

    There is likely a 3 year plan in place.

    The first year is unspectacular building of foundations and trying to get Arsenal under control again. The aim will be getting Arsenal into the UCL and agreeing new commercials to add £70-80 Million to our transfer amount.

    The second year is influenced by the first, players like Xhaka, Mustafi, Ozil, Elneny etc get a chance to show they can be useful on the pitch or they are sold hopefully at an increased value from their rock bottom prices the year before. We then add 1 or 2 big buys to the team with £140-150 Million budget plus whatever we raise in sales along with some more solid buys in needed positions.

    The third year we should be where Liverpool are now, a solid team, maybe some issues still that need sorting, but adding the spectacular to the team with huge buys and looking to push on for the title.

    The frustration among supporters come from the fact we should already be years into this project because Wenger should have gone a long time ago. Of all the bashing of Kroenke today that is his main crime here.

  61. WengerEagle

    Paulinho

    What do you make of our signings?

    Guendouzi looks good but it’s unfair what will be expected of a 19 year old now by the fans when he goes through the inevitable teething process.

    Defensively I don’t know what we’re thinking or what kind of strategy is going into the signings. Sokratis screams cheap and easy with the Dortmund link and Lichtsteiner realistically is back up.

  62. Marko

    I’m sure Cole is somewhere in LA face-palming right now if he has the brain-age of over 21.

    You mean high fiving his face

  63. PhD2020

    Would love to see Ramsey do a decade of footballing in three European countries..
    The Bundesliga,La Liga and the Premiership.Pick up a WC, a few titles in between and then ask for £300k rise..

    Maybe,I might agree with him abandoning ship , his consistent indiscipline and occasionally/frequently (1 year/10 year period)scoring goals when injury free,over a ten year period.

  64. WengerEagle

    gambon

    Yeah and look, more than willing to give Emery time to put his thoughts into practice giving Wenger had enough years to fuck around and use the club as his own personal source of amusement.

    I just don’t know how we cannot address the CB issue in particular with better than Sokratis and links to Vida. Also we’re screaming out for a wideman/somebody that can actually beat players,, we can all see it so surely they can too?

  65. Cesc Appeal

    I think we will get a CB definitely and maybe one more player, there are too many rumours linking us to Dembele for there not to be something there.

    We can be interested, doesn’t mean we’re getting him of course.

    Whether the CB is someone people will like, not sure. There is no more money left for transfers.

    The rest is up to Emery and his coaches to get this team to 4th or win the Europa.

  66. Paulinho

    WE – It’s weird, it feels like the more we sign the more we need. Shines a light on the general inadequacy of the whole squad rather as much as adding to it with what we need,

    I Like Torreira and think he will be quality, but he’s still working out what type of player he is in terms of impacting the game going forward,and there could be some problems in that regard. Noticed a few times he runs forward with the ball and stops and tries to win a free kick instead of fully committing to a dribble.

    Leno has brought a freshness to the role, but not sure about the rest. Sokratis looks and plays like he has a permanent hangover, so jury is out.

    Think we will struggle to implement Emery’s ambitious tactical strategy but looking forward to all of it regardless. Guendouzi is key to it all. If he can continue to prosper it could go all work and we could have a good season.

  67. Receding hairline

    Finishing in the top four will satisfy me more than the Europa league. It will be a better barometer with which to judge the progress made.

    We can actually do both ..must not necessarily be one or the other

  68. gambon

    WengerEagle

    Yeah, I think Emery was too keen to give everyone a chance and that was probably even part of his interview.

    I’ve been saying for 12 months…..I’d sell Mustafi & Chambers then invest in 2 good CBs. One prime age and one real younger talent.

    I said that last summer, I said it back in May, and I still think that.

    Like I say, I think Emery wanted to implement his system and then decide what was and wasn’t needed.

    The signings we’ve made have been to compliment the squad rather than replace (Apart from Ospina)

  69. salparadisenyc

    Cesc

    No doubt top four the goal.

    And if you look at what this crew has done based on nearly a calendar year of work, throwing in the winter window that just past.

    Its been sea change stuff from PEA, the Mhki and Sanchez swap to Wenger out, a spine rebuild on purported £50m budget which looks to be accurate with a few outs surely to come. We honestly could not of written that sentence a year ago without having a huge laugh. So yes there is that.

    Doesn’t change fact I’m super suspect of this defense. and lack of goals in side.

  70. Marko

    Depends on how we finish the window whether or not we challenge for top 4. As things stand now it’d be a struggle because the defence has the potential to be as leaky as before. But if we end up with a couple signings before the window finishes top 4 should be on

  71. Elmo

    “If Ramsey doesn’t extend before Thursday, I hope the club bin him and make him train with the U10s.”

    If the club really wanted to be vindictive, they could just run him into the ground in the back end of the season (play him Thursday and Sunday every week), knowingly pushing him beyond the red line where he’s likely to pick up another injury.

    Perhaps clubs will start adopting the position that if certain players treat clubs as disposable, then they should look to extract every possible minute of output from the player with no regard for their future after the end of the contract. Sweat their asset to the max and leave them broken for someone else to try to fix.

  72. Cesc Appeal

    Sal

    The defence is a real worry.

    There was not really a pre-season game where I thought they looked good. Against weak and young Atletico and PSG sides it looked vulnerable. Against Chelsea if it wasn’t for Cech putting in a great performance by half time that could have been bad, Chelsea basically broke through at will especially with Bellerin’s performance and then Lazio they looked poor again.

    Then you think of City who looked sharp against Chelsea and you do worry.

    Attack wise we’re good, not great, but good. We can cause people problems and Torreira goes a long way to curing what has been a shit midfield for years.

    But overall I do think we’re a 4th place team at best this year.

    Hopefully this time next year we’re saying something a lot different.

  73. Dissenter

    The shambolic precedent was set with the Ozil contract.
    That’s where the club erred bigly [a la Trump]

    Which is why we should have seen Ramsey coming from a mile away.
    There’s no team above us that NEEDS to buy Ramsey, they only need him to fill their squad.
    We ought to have called his bluff by July 15th; sign or leave.

  74. salparadisenyc

    “Hopefully this time next year we’re saying something a lot different.”

    Based on last year, seems quite possible!

    Boatang would be a nice finish but thats a no goer with him snubbing United money. But I wouldn’t put it past this crew signing another 30 year old defender.

  75. WengerEagle

    Paulinho

    Yeah ha makes sense in a weird way, squad was such a mess under Wenger that we’d kind of given up hope re addressing the glaring issues in it but once you clean up a position or two you scrutinise your other weak spots, it’s only natural.

    I think most like Torreira and Leno as signings, both are notable upgrades on what we already had and have great upside given their ages. Same with Guendouzi but people have to be a lot more patient with him. I already like the balls on the kid though, makes mistakes but has a swagger and a purpose about his play that is infectious. He will improve a lot at the club.

    Defensively it’s just hard to fathom what we’re doing. Maybe Emery wants to feel out Holding and Mavropanos for a season to see if they have what it takes and Sokratis is just a short-term option, he’ll help Mavro settle in too being Greek.

  76. Dissenter

    One plaer to watch out for this season is Salah because last year’s performance was no fluke.
    He has developed the aura of a mega-star just below the Messi/Ronaldo level.
    When he walks into a game, there’s that unspoken belief that he’s going to score with every other touch and it scares defenders- they have to account for him.
    He may very well replicate last season’s form, if he does Liverpool will break their league hoodoo.

  77. WengerEagle

    gambon

    Yeah he could just want a season to feel out the squad and see if he can spark a rejuvenation out of the likes of Bellerin, Kolasinac and Mustafi and improve Mavropanos and Holding.

    Given Kroenke was so ridiculously patient with Wenger, Emery won’t be under huge pressure this season past a top 5-6 finish, anything more would be a bonus.

    i actually think we have what it takes to finish 4th mind, nobody else fazes me besides City and Liverpool.

  78. gambon

    I would say there was some fluke involved.

    Salah is a good player but he’s not scoring 40 or even 30 goals every season.

  79. WengerEagle

    Salah is an amazing player.

    Having said that, no way he touches 45 goals again imo. Everything he touched ended up in the back of the net last season, was like Higuain for Napoli in 2015/16 and Immobile last season.

    He’ll still break 30, my guess is he scores 30-35 in all comps.

  80. gambon

    Mail running with the story that we have doubled our kit deal from 30m to 60m pa with Adidas from next summer.

    If so, that’s a good deal.

    Chelsea are also on 60m pa but they are tied in for 15 years.

  81. seniorgooner

    London Gunner you are so right the transfer window was not a magnificent success my main worry is we didnt get a class CB Sokratis is slower than Mertesacker Lichensteiner is a one year very slow stop gap RB/ Wenger dreadful transfer and wage dealings have left us vulnerable we cant getrid of dross like Jenkinson. Ospina erc no one will pay their current wages and Ramsey is blackmailing us. Our only hope is that tomorrow we sell Rambo and Welbeck for 65 million and we get 2 class players in at last moment.

  82. WengerEagle

    Hard to look past Kane for top scorer once again, think Aubameyang can definitely challenge him if he’s played down the middle and usual suspects like Aguero and Lukaku will be up there.

  83. Cesc Appeal

    That would be a great deal, what is Puma right now £34 Million or something? So that would be £26 Million of new money straight away.

  84. Cesc Appeal

    The Pogba to Barcelona story is gathering steam.

    Apparently he is desperate to leave and has already agreed personal terms.

  85. WengerEagle

    United would have to be out of their mind to swap Pogba to Barcelona for their dross.

    No chance they entertain a deal unless the likes of Dembele are involved.

  86. azed

    “No chance they entertain a deal unless the likes of Dembele are involved.”

    With Pogba running from Mourinho,I doubt Dembele would be looking forward to it.

  87. Cesc Appeal

    Gambon

    Great deal then.

    To be honest I was expecting some sort of flat, uninspiring, mild growth deal like £40 Million.

    With it being £60 Million bringing in an extra £30 Million a season in that one deal is pretty great. Emirates renewed with us as well I think and they are paying £20 Million more a season starting next year. Add in the sleeve deal, UCL money etc and we’re bringing in a lot more money right away.

  88. Cesc Appeal

    Barcelona will have to offer the whole amount in money, no way Dembele would want to join Mourinho I wouldn’t think.

    Means Barcelona will need money, enter Arsenal 😉

  89. Dissenter

    United have to show Barca they are a big club.
    Tell them to pay up 200 million or fuck off.
    I would have forcibly waxed the agent that came with that condescending offer of two dross players plus 40 million for Pogba.

  90. US

    Haven’t posted in a while so go easy on me guys.

    Can someone explain to me the Ramsey love fest? What is he elite at exactly?

    Close control: No (Ozil, Mkhi, Torreira, are better)
    Passing: No (Ozil, Mkhi, Torreira, Xhaka, Guendouzi are better)
    Play making: No (Ozil, Mkhi, Xhaka, Guendouzi)
    Goal scoring: Yes
    Tactical discipline: No (Ozil, Mkhi, Torreira, Xhaka)
    Tackling: No (Mkhi, Torreira, Xhaka)
    Fast break initiation: No (Ozil, Mkhi, Xhaka, Guendouzi)
    Athleticism: Yes

    Its no surprise that no other teams are bidding big for him. Not sure how anyone justifies giving him 200 – 300k a week when he’s not a starter in our midfield. I see Xhaka and Torreira at the base with Ozil in the 10 spot. Guendouzi and Elneny are better fits at the base with Ramsey best suited to back up Ozil at the 10. 300k for a back up!

    He has a bigger brand profile than most of our other midfielders but he’s definitely not a better player

  91. Guns of SF

    Only way Ramsey stays is for his engine and pressing tactics of emery
    Can’t think of any other reason but those are not worth 250 plus per week

  92. TonyD

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-6036777/Kroenkes-Arsenal-buy-means-proud-club-turns-franchise.html

    I’m sure there will be many journalists’ views on the take over to come.

    Having read the posts here many have merit from Pedro’s to CC’s to Gambon etc.

    At the end of the day it is all speculation and various points made can support the different narratives. For most of us our thoughts are emotionally driven, especially those of us in our 50s onwards who are life supporters of the club where what has happened in the unthinkable. Yet it has happened and that is the reality.

    We’ll have to wait and see, we have no other option, but we had no control before the take over as such. However, it doesn’t makes sense on any business level to devalue what potentially is currently the Kroenke’s most valuable asset.

    That said it would be foolish for the Kroenke’s to under estimate the clubs fan base because they will make their voices heard if the need arises. Equally the British press will support and reciprocate fans’ voices of an English club, especially one with such deep rooted tradition over any American billionaire’s misdealing if there were any.

    The hope is sponsors will view us more favorably, especially if money is invested in the right calibre players, which go on the bring back the successes of early Wenger and GG.

    This really is a case of time will tell and we have a new season to look forward to starting with City on Sunday.

    Maybe trepidation has been increased with the take over, but the excitement of the unknown is very much there for us all as fans no matter what acronym you fell under in the past 12 years under Wenger.

  93. Emiratesstroller

    Many posters on Le Grove have advocated for a very long time complete regime change and that is frankly what we are getting.

    Kroenke family will own rather than control the club. Some may object to his
    leadership but until now he could argue that he had responsibility to run the
    club as a business rather than as a football club. That might well change.

    The Board is still unchanged apart from arrival of Josh Kroenke. One or two of
    the old hats now in their late 70s and 80s should be shifted out.

    Gazidis is by all accounts on the way out of the club. He has been at helm as
    CEO for 10 years, but realistically it took him 9 years to make any material
    changes in the way the club was run. Hopefully his replacement will have more control on the way that the club is run in future.

    Messrs Sanhelli, Mislintat, Emery and Burgess now fulfil specific roles at the
    club rather than Arsenal being a one trick pony with Wenger.

    I hope that the club will continue to be a steady ship, but the owners do have a
    responsibility to run Arsenal as a competitive football club and curb the decline in our performance on the field.

    The first objective must be to bring Arsenal back into top 4 in League and qualify for Champions League. That may take 2 years to achieve and will require proper investment in team specifically in defence. Our defence is still
    below par in my view.

  94. Up 4 grabs now

    The chambers loan deal doesn’t make much sense when you consider holding is the player crying out for game time, and needing a loan.

    Not saying chambers is the new Tony Adams, but when you look at all the centrebacks that we have that will be fit for the city game, he looks the best one to have lining up in the defence.

    Why play him all those games in preseason for Fulham to get the benefit?
    Why sign him to a new deal if your not selling him, loaning makes no sense. And why loan him with two days left of the transfer window, with no replacement brought in already.

    Ramsey situation is no better, they should have given him an ultimatum two weeks ago, sign or we announce to the world your available for transfer and at least try and get a bidding war going.

    Some of the deals are great from the New guys but there is still dead wood hanging around and a lot up in the air still, with not long left till deadline day.

  95. Emiratesstroller

    Up4grabsnow

    Chambers is not remotely good enough to play for a top 4 club in EPL. He is
    now playing for a club that suits his level.

    The only surprise is that Arsenal gave him a new contract with pay rise.

    Ramsey is somewhat different, because when fit he is a starter in our 1st X1.
    There are of course different opinions about his ability. My understanding is
    that Arsenal made an offer to increase his wages to £150K pw. His agent seems
    to value his services at considerably more!!

  96. TitsMcGee

    Mail running with the story that we have doubled our kit deal from 30m to 60m pa with Adidas from next summer.”

    Great if true.

  97. Wallace

    I’m very happy with Leno, Lichtsteiner, Torreira & Guendouzi.

    if we bring in Vida to replace Chambers it’ll be remarkable only in that we’ll have signed two mature CBs this summer and Mustafi would still be my first choice.

  98. Up 4 grabs now

    Emirates,
    He might not be the standard we need to get back into the top four, but he’s shown signs of improvement and maybe under emery and alongside a decent partner could make the jump?

    My point though was, he is the best of a bad bunch, and should have lined up against city.
    If we don’t bring another centreback in which could happen, it means we start with the two Greek guys or with Mustafa or holding.

    It ain’t great.

  99. Up 4 grabs now

    Wallace,

    Signings have been good although not sold on papa,
    Still think another centrebacks and winger is needed.
    But hopefully with emery actually instilling tactics and different formations in games, top four is possible

  100. Receding Hairline

    Wallace there is nothing remarkable about Vida coming in IMO.

    Besiltas are very desperate to flog him for some money at the back of a world cup where he was not exactly excellent, he is 29…look at his club football history. Sokratis pisses all over him and i do not rate Sokratis.

    I mean we can sign a fast, strong defender from virtually any league in the world without looking at someone based on World cup performances

  101. Emiratesstroller

    Wallace and Up4grabs now

    There is no dispute that our Centre Backs are sub par when compared with other top clubs in EPL and Europe.

    Chambers despite his age would not change that. The difference between him and let say Mavropanos is that he has reached the point in his career where he
    needs to play regularly and that is not going to happen at Arsenal.

    Also his wages are significantly higher than those of both Holding and Mavropanos.

  102. Emiratesstroller

    Arsenal have at the moment too many players on their books who are bench
    players and don’t justify wages of £50-80K pw which we are currently paying
    them.

    That has been the problem at the club for far too long and renders many of these players unsaleable.

    I am all for paying our elite players top dollar, but not paying average players
    inflated wages to sit on bench.

  103. salparadisenyc

    Stoller

    Indeed, the after effects of Wengers wage structure, unsellable dross sitting on bench waiting for last year of contract to move on or loan around in the interim, Gibbs, Walcott, Jenkinson, Campbell, Wilshire and many more.

    Going to take a couple seasons more to fully eradicate it but this new transfer team off to a good start with us seeing backs of many in pretty quick succession.

  104. Wallace

    Receding Hairline

    “Wallace there is nothing remarkable about Vida coming in IMO.”

    that was my point. Sokratis & Vida would be very underwhelming additions. especially when Yerry Mina looks to be available for not much more than we’d pay for Vida.

  105. Up 4 grabs now

    Would rather see chambers with mustafi or papa than holding, and with Europa and league cup games fa cup and sub appearances he would have plenty of games this season

    Maybe a moot point and we could sign somebody top draw.
    Just not holding my breath!

  106. Sanmi

    London gunner believes pool’s attack is better than ours, I disagree. Last season, yes. This season it’s left to be seen. Player for player, we have better players.
    Aubermayang >>>> Mane
    Lacazette a better goal threat than Firminho
    Salah>>>>> ozil.

    That’s 2 to 1.

    However, let’s see how the system works.

  107. Sanmi

    In the midfield Torreira is better than Keita

    I haven’t seen Fabinho play, I can’t judge. But I will give that to Fabinho even tho I haven’t seen him play but based on hype.

    The 3rd man in both midfield is uncertain .

    Defensively.
    They have a better RB, we have a better LB, they have a better CB.

    Goal keepers, I have no idea who’s better.

    Are we that far off? Let’s see the teams play matches then we judge, player for player we are about the same

  108. Sanmi

    Man utd:
    Auba> sanchez
    Lukaku > lacazette
    Ozil > lingard
    Torreira = Matic
    Pogba > than whomever
    Fred vs ?
    Monreal > young
    Valencia > Bellerin
    Both shitty CBs
    DE gea > whomever
    Man utd win by 4 to 3.. if our 3rd man midfield is better than Fred, we draw

  109. James wood

    Gambon.
    Re Salah not scoring 30-40 goals a season?

    But he’s worth that to the team .
    Salah is like having an extra man.
    Salah is the type we desperately need.?

    At the moment we are light at the back
    And if Perez and Welbeck go even lighter upfront.

    I am not optimistic but hey let’s see what happens
    Sunday will give us more of a view.

  110. Sanmi

    Spurs:
    Auba > son
    Kane > lacazette
    Alli= ozil
    Erickson > whomever
    Torreira > whomever
    Monreal > Davies
    Trippier > Bellerin
    Both spurs CB better than ours
    Lloris> whomever
    Spurs win 7: 3

  111. Sanmi

    James
    There’s no guarantee Salah will reproduce last seasons form. He’s only had one of such season in his entire career.
    20 goals this season is a real tall order. He will be targetted. And he doesn’t play CF.

  112. raptora

    Pool’s front three absolutely decimates ours.
    Player for player and especially as a whole three.
    Their front three has basically all the ingredients you could need, ours doesn’t.
    Firmino is miles ahead of Lacazette. Firmino vs Auba is a more even comparison where I still believe that the Brazilian wins.
    Mane destroys any option we could play on our left wing, and Salah vs Ozil is as one-sided as it can get. Here and now Salah was the player of last season, one of the three most exciting players after Ronaldo and Messi – Mbappe, Neymar and Salah. Ozil just got publicly demolished by his own country and probably more than half of Arsenal’s fans want him out of our club.

  113. Sanmi

    Prolific wingers hardly maintain their goal scoring forms season after season. Hazard had about just 2, sanchez also, Pires too, same with Bale.
    I will be surprised if Salah hits 20

  114. Sanmi

    ‘Firmino is miles ahead of Lacazette. Firmino vs Auba is a more even comparison where I still believe that the Brazilian wins.’

    You have to be kidding me. Lacazette and Firminho might be debatable, but Auba?
    Only Harry Kane and Aguero in the entire fucking epl is on his level. A hit and miss Firminho that can’t bench Jesus and you compare him with a prolific scorer like AUBA?

  115. Sanmi

    Pool’s attack collectively play better but firminho and Mane are no where near world class.
    Mane is barely in control of the ball.
    How dare you compare Auba and firminho

  116. Sanmi

    Last season
    Auba 29 league matches 23 goals (2 leagues)
    Firminho 37 league matches 15 goals

    EPL alone, Auba 13 matches 10goals.

    How can you even think of comparing?

  117. Sanmi

    Even lacazette is better than Firminho
    EPL 32 matches (half as subs) 14goals

    Firminho is nowhere near both as strikers. Mind you that was lacazette and Auba 1st season in a new league and they had better stats