Transfer budget leaks. Why?

by & filed under News Review.

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TWO DAYS WITH NO POST.

Sorry, I was crushed by advertising challenges. If you don’t plug those leaks, eventually there will be a flood my friends. Let that be a potent lesson to those sleeping in wet tents.

Right, what have we today?

John Cross and Sami Mokbel both reckon AFC has £45m to spend this summer.

David Ornstein told Arsecast there’s £100m to spend.

A CLASH OF THE MIGHTY ITK.

To be absolutely straight with you, I had heard the lower number from the same places that I hear good things from.

As Gambon from the comments pointed out, it’s way too fucking early to talking budgets.

We could finish 4th and earn an extra £40m next season… or we could finish 8th and not make Europe at all.

So here’s where the whole thing gets a bit blurred… yes, we should be able to spend a lot of money, but Sami Mokbel is very well connected, and say what you want about John Cross, the man knows all the tea ladies behind the scenes. What I’m saying here is the club is briefing a low number and they are doing it on purpose.

Why?

Well, they could be greasing the wheels to sell a major player that won’t be popular. Lacazette, our super-saucy-swag-machine of a striker could be on the way out because let’s be real, he’s the most saleable asset we have going into the summer.

Stan K could be keen to rein in our expenditure now he’s taken us private. Remember the e-mail for money saving that went to all the staff? That could point to tighter days.

It could be that absolute Arsenal classic: ‘Why would you tell people you are rich?’

The strategy is unclear and the leak feels very odd after Josh K literally told Jonathan Wilson he wanted to win the Champions League a few days ago.

Anyway, if the money is £45m, it’s going to be a tough summer.

Interesting that Ornstein also said there were disagreements about Suarez, and that the club really fancied Perisic.

The good times are certainly not going to land if that’s the future of our deals.

I’m even a little worried about the Monchi hire. The jury is out on the Roma tenure despite a great run the Champions League. I’d argue that he oversold after his first season, now his team are languishing a bit. Everything looks a little bit like we’re loading the club up with Europa League talent, which doesn’t leave me feeling even slightly aroused.

Still, one thing is for sure, it does seem like the reason for not purchasing was related to value more than cash flow. We could easily have dropped a madness last month. We didn’t, which shows we learnt a lesson.

Right, I have to go back to my world of hell and cry into a branded hoodie.

Big love to you all, thanks for standing by me during times of pain. x

P.S. I thought this infographic was amazing for how misleading it is.

Klopp didn’t spend £70m and took over Oct 15, spending £5.1m in his first transfer window.

That number for Poch is from his Southampton days.

Koeman dropped 45 in his first 24 for Southampton and didn’t make the list.

Conte smashed the list and was available last summer. What? I’m just saying? Damn, you are so touchy…

300 Responses to “Transfer budget leaks. Why?”

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  1. Receding Hairline

    Jani Coutinho will be a dream signing of that there is no doubt..we are just not there yet. We are not in a position to offer the 90-120m pounds needed to close that deal without putting our house in order first.

    We are not making deals like that anytime soon if we are being honest with ourselves.

  2. Dissenter

    “Just saying if Chelsea and United are being linked to Coutinho as we speak, why isn’t Arsenal?”

    OMG
    Lets spend the transfer budget for the next two seasons on Coutinho?
    Barca just spent about 125 million Euros, how much will they sell him for?

  3. Pierre

    Qna
    “You’re acting like Emery has gone to the board who were throwing money at him and begging him to spend their money and he was like – no I will only take Suarez on loan.”

    Not at all …apparently we have brought him in to play on the wing …..in other words, a winger.
    Can you honestly see Saurez. flying down the wing , beating players , creating chances …I cant.

    He looks a neat and tidy player to me who is not physically strong and with limited pace ..

    I’m looking forward to seeing the team with a lightning fast , brave , skilful winger this weekend .
    A word of warning , don’t expect him to receive any protection from the referee.

  4. HighburyLegend

    “Suarez is here on a SIX MONTHS LOAN DEAL with NO OBLIGATION TO BUY”

    That’s obvious.
    He wouldn’t be at Arsenal if there was the obligation to buy him lol

  5. englandsbest

    This talk of Coutinho is simply ludicrous. Don’t you know, Arsenal have no money. We’ve been told by the CEO, the sports director and the manager.

    Oh, I get it. A straight swap for Ozil.

  6. HighburyLegend

    ““Just saying if Chelsea and United are being linked to Coutinho as we speak, why isn’t Arsenal?””

    Is the idiot who wrote this is aware that this could be the same with any other top player ??

  7. Skinnywill

    In respect of the accounts I summarise the £56m profit we made in 2018 below:

    Turnover from Football – £388m
    Property development profits – £5m
    Profit on player sales – £122m
    Wages – (£240m) – includes £17m for Wenger & staff payoff
    Transfer and signing on fees amortisation – (£92m)
    Other Operating Costs – (£104m)
    Interest – (£9m)
    Tax – (£14m)
    ——————————–
    Profit £56m

    Without the profit on player sales we would have made a £52m loss (as there would have been no tax).

    If you look for 2019

    Wages – The cost after removing the compensation paid to Wenger and his team was £223m in 2018, I would estimate that this has increased by say £20m to take into account the new signings and a full year for the new contracts to Ozil et al and the Jan 2018 signings. So this is a £3m increase in cost from 2018.

    Turnover – We had the Rwanda shirt sleeve deal rumoured to be worth £10m and say another £5m increase in commercials as new partners have come on board. So this is a £15m positive.

    Other operating costs – say a 5% increase therefore an additional £6m cost

    Player registrations – The amount yet to be charged to the P&L as at 31/5/2018 was £238m so say the average remaining contract was 3 years this would be £79m. We spent £70m in summer which with signing on fees, agents fees and the signing on fees for new contracts say amounts to £90m in total which over say 4 years is £23m. Therefore the total cost would be £102m which is a £10m additional cost.

    Sale of player registrations – We did sell Perez which I have assumed we broke even on after accounting for the previous depreciation of his original transfer fee but there were no big name departures so I am assuming for 2019 this figure will be relatively small relating only to loan fees received of say £5m which is a £117m difference to 2018.

    Tax – There would be no tax as we are making a loss so this is a £14m improvement.

    Therefore if you take the £56m profit and apply all the above then it converts into a £51m loss for 2019. Of course all this is estimated and could be significantly different but it agrees to Teraloons estimate.

    Therefore in 2020 we could only make a £20m loss to meet the aggregate £15m losses in a 3 year period which would mean improving on the 2019 performance by £30m. However as long as you can show evidence of secure funding (hence maybe why we have a large cash balance?) that £15m loss can be £105m for a three year period before the league imposes a transfer ban.

    This shows why the extra income from the CL is important and that in effect we are already spending a fair chunk of the additional TV and sponsorship monies expected from next season thereon. It also explains why we can’t simply spend the cash we have in the bank and why the transfer kitty is being reported at circa £40m.

  8. Leedsgunner

    CA/WengerEagle

    “You can add selling Szczesny for 12 million and Gnabry for 5 million to the list of awful decision making on players to come in and out of the club in recent years.”

    That’s what happens when you allow too much power to be invested in one person. Before 2018, it was Wenger. Bad decisions get approved because of the decision maker and not because it is a good decision on its merits.

    In 2019, especially with the sacking of Mislintat, will we make the same mistake with Raul Sanhelli? Why are we giving him so much control? A person’s contact book, no matter how extensive, will over time become outdated. Sven’s analytical approach by its very nature operated from the latest data… thereby countering the weakness of the contact book approach; we could have had the best of both worlds but we are foolishly in my opinion putting all our eggs in Raul’s basket.

    I do hope we get Monchi as Sven’s replacement… though. He has a good record too.

  9. qna

    Pierre. I didn’t know anything about him really. I didn’t like what I saw from his debut. But I fail to see how this is on Emery? We needed to strengthen in January. The club gave us no money.

    It wasn’t Emery’s job to negotiate with clubs around Europe to get us players on loan. That was Raul’s job. Raul managed to get only one player on loan. I am saying it’s hopefully better than none.

    The bar isn’t very high when it comes to the wingers that we have. I think every last one of them needs to be replaced.

  10. Receding Hairline

    “I actually do think he is a very similar player to Ozil.”

    The cat’s out the bag then. Your animosity towards him is due to the fact Emery now has someone else who can do the “touches” and that may mean you won’t get to see Ozil on the pitch

    Explains the weird fixation you have with a player on a six month loan deal

  11. Pierre

    RH
    I said from day one that he reminds me of Ozil so there is no cat and no bag to talk about.

    Why bring someone in who is a similar player to what you already have who holds the record for the fastest to 50 assists in the league and for whatever reason won’t play him even though the team continues to play poorly and continue to lose games without him.

    And besides Ozil, we have Ramsey and Mhkitaryan, is Saurez any better than those 2, the stats show he is not even close.

  12. Redtruth

    Big clubs don’t sell their stars, claims Arsène Wenger

    David Hytner in Kuala Lumpur

    @DaveHytner
    Tue 12 Jul 2011 00.06 BST

    Arsène Wenger insists Samir Nasri will stay but admits uncertainty regarding Cesc Fábregas

    Arsène Wenger has categorically ruled out the prospect of Samir Nasri leaving this summer, going so far as to suggest that Arsenal could not be considered a “big club” if they lost both the France midfielder and Cesc Fábregas.

    Wenger has chosen to hold on to Nasri even though it could cost the club upwards of £20m in lost transfer fees, and the manager said he would “fight until the last second” to keep Fábregas, despite admitting his captain was “torn” over his desire to rejoin Barcelona.

    Nasri, a target for both of the Manchester clubs, who are prepared to start the bidding for him at £20m, has entered the final 12 months of his contract in north London and he has so far ignored Arsenal’s offer of fresh terms, believed to be worth £90,000 a week.

    But Wenger, speaking at the club’s pre-season tour base in Malaysia, said that he would rather have Nasri for one more season and lose him as a Bosman free agent than sell him now. There remains the hope at the club that Nasri could yet re-sign and the prospect might be helped if Fàbregas were to secure his move to Barcelona. Nasri would then enjoy a more central role in the midfield.

    “Samir’s situation is clear for me,” Wenger said. “He stays. We are in a [financial] position where we can say ‘No’ and we will, in the case of Samir.” Wenger said that it was better to keep Nasri for another season and risk losing him for nothing than to sell him to United or City before the closure of the transfer window, even if it represented a £20m gamble.

    “You are the same people who reproach me for not spending money and now you reproach me for wanting to spend it,” he added, with a smile. “It is in the interests of the club. Fábregas is in no-man’s land … Imagine the worst situation, that we lose Fábregas and Nasri; you cannot convince people that you are ambitious after that.”

    Wenger was asked what would happen if Fàbregas said he was unhappy. “That’s the only way he could get out,” he replied. “I don’t think he’s unhappy but he wants to go back to Barcelona. For us, it’s not a question of money. It’s a question of Cesc wanting to be with us. And I think he is torn because he loves the club deeply.”

    Robin van Persie is desperate for Fábregas and Nasri to stay – he said that the former “would be a miss for any team” – and he stressed the need for Wenger to add quality to the squad. It is not inconceivable that Van Persie, who is under contract until 2013, would consider his future if he were unimpressed by the club’s transfer business.

    “The way I feel now is that a few signings are more than welcome,” he said. “Every other team is buying quality players so hopefully we will do the same. You need investment to keep up. Everyone needs competition because no one really wants to go to sleep. In an ideal world, no one should be really sure of his place, except maybe the captain and the goalkeeper.

    “Why not sign a player for £20m-£25m? These days, proper players cost money. Sometimes, it can be a statement for the others as well. But the main thing is it’s not just a label, a multimillion-pound signing. It’s more about the quality.”

  13. Dissenter

    Pierre
    “And besides Ozil, we have Ramsey and Mhkitaryan, is Saurez any better than those 2, the stats show he is not even close.”

    Don’t fret because Suarez will be gone at the end of May.
    We need an extra warm body replace the lifeless effigy of Ozil.

  14. Up 4 grabs now

    Evening all,

    Did I miss the bit where Ornstein and all the other media hacks sit in on our board meetings and set the budget for the year?
    This season’s not even finished yet but they know what we’re spending on players next season.
    We might finish 4th?
    We might finish 5th or 6th?
    That depends how much money there is for transfers.
    Is it champion’s league or Europa?

    FFP comes into it but we’re shifting on 500k a week in salaries just on players retiring or going on bosmans on June the 1st.

    If they can shift ozil, Xhaka, mustafi and miki that’s 1.2 million a week in wages saved.
    & maybe 70-80 million in cheap transfers.

    That gives us a hell of a lot to play with even if there was only a 45 million war chest!

  15. Graham62

    Redtruth

    Do you know exactly when Samir Nasri decided he wanted to leave AFC? I do.

    It was the second the final whistle blew after the 2011 Carling Cup Final defeat to Birmingham.

    Another tactical balls-up from Wenger.

    He’d had enough.

    Nothing to do with a lack of investment.

  16. qna

    Red. That was always the problem. It’s why I was fooled by him for so long. Wenger always said things that I agreed with them and agree with today. It’s why for the longest time I was prepared to believe that it was not his decisions. That his hands were somehow tied. I really can’t understand how he destroyed his legacy so badly. If he just walked the walk and added quality players I think it would have been enough to paper over the cracks of his tactical deficiencies. Don’t think he ever wins a champions league, but maybe he adds a few more league titles and no one is ever the wiser that all these other managers had gone so far past him.

    Sad. Reminds me of the days when I used to love Wenger. I wonder if David Dein had never left and Wenger was forced to stay in his lane, if things would have been so different.

  17. Up 4 grabs now

    Red,

    If Wenger had any honour, he would have resigned when Nasri went.
    He can’t make a speech like that about not Being a big club if both were sold, and then stay on.

    As soon as they left, that set the wheels in motion for RVP to go.
    And to sell him to Ferguson and announce he’s handed the title to utd was just as bad.
    Should have quit there and then.

  18. Graham62

    qna

    How come you were “fooled” by Wenger for so long.

    You were actually listening to and believing in all his garbage?

    Wenger’s hands were never tied. A myth.

    Then again you weren’t the only one sucked in by his sob stories.

    Just a pity that after we moved to the new stadium, so many supporters bought into all his crap.

    Always making excuses and looking for sympathy.

    Ah, shame.

  19. qna

    Up for grabs. It was set in motion when we started selling players to City. I can’t remember who went first. Clichy maybe? As soon as we started doing that, we systematically went about replacing a good squad of players with mediocre ones. The final straw for me was buying Arteta. We did add a couple of good players after that initial sell off stated, including Nasri. I liked the intent of Arhavin even if it didn’t quite go as well as I had expected. But majority of our buys after that were mediocre compared to what the other big clubs were doing. By the time we sold RVP for Podolski and Giroud the horse had well and truly bolted.

  20. Graham62

    Remember folks this blog was basically established because people were fed up with Wenger and his boring and predictable methods.

    Correct me if I’m wrong.

  21. qna

    Graham. Yep. I still don’t understand what happened. My arrogance maybe, but I can’t believe he had me fooled. Was nothing real between us Arsene….. (shakes fist at the skies).

    The way I figure it, Arsene was one of the best of his time… at first. The set up worked and Dein had control of certain aspects and Wenger others.

    When Dein left, Pedro’s man Ivan should have kept that balance going. But being completely out of his depth he handed over that aspect to Wenger. He must have thought all he has to do is collect his cheque’s and Wenger will do the rest. Arsenal kept making top 4, seemed to be working. He couldn’t see what was actually happening until it was too late. The value of playing assets being wiped. The ridiculous wage bill and socialist policies.

    I think this was a real life example of the idiom – give him enough rope to hang himself. I do feel sorry for Wenger. He needed a boss that knew what he was doing. Giving Wenger control was ultimately his downfall.

  22. Up 4 grabs now

    Qna
    Toure, adebayor, clichy, then nasri and then sagna.
    (Yes I did Google it)
    The worst decision though was letting them get Vieira for the last 18 months of his career.
    Seeing him play while we were saddled with denilson and song.
    He could have come in and settled the younger players down then started coaching here.
    Another Wenger screw up!

  23. Graham62

    qna

    Please, don’t feel sorry for Wenger.

    You should be feeling sorry for AFC.

    As for Gazidis, a complete and utter waste of space.

    The consequences of which are there for all to see.

  24. azed

    “I’ve been working with him for eight months. My relationship with him is good.

    “When I arrived here young players came, they decided because of him. He has a very good scouting responsibility for his past and his present.

    “I worked well with him and after it’s between the club and him. I don’t know everything but I respect him and the club.

    “I wish good luck for him in his future.”

    Emery taking the about his relationship with Sven and also confirming that he had nothing or very little to do with the 70M spent.

  25. gambon

    Skinnywill

    Think you have one bit wrong:

    “Wages – The cost after removing the compensation paid to Wenger and his team was £223m in 2018, I would estimate that this has increased by say £20m to take into account the new signings and a full year for the new contracts to Ozil et al and the Jan 2018 signings. So this is a £3m increase in cost from 2018.”

    For a number of reasons:

    Sure, the Ozil raise, and wages for Auba, Mykhitaryan and Mavropanos need to be annualised.

    But so do the savings from the outgoing of Walcott (£140k), Giroud (£100k), Coquelin (80k) , Sanchez £140k), Debuchy (£80k). In fact when you look at our January business, it probably only added £50k per week, or £2.5m to our wage bill.

    As for this summers business, we signed 5 x players, but also lost:

    Cazorla
    Wilshere
    Mertesacker
    Ospina (Loan)
    Chambers (Loan)

    Which again, probably balances things.

    I would imagine, our wage bill is much less than £243m

  26. Graham62

    When exactly did Arsenal stop being an elite club?

    I personally think it was after our Carling Cup Final to defeat to BC. The same season we were thumped 8-2 at OT.

    That’s right. 8 years ago!

    London and a nice salary thereafter became the only appeal.

    Winning and competing was suddenly off the agenda.

  27. Marko

    Were we honestly ever an elite club? As good as things got under Wenger we never won back to back titles and never contended in Europe bar one season. Always seemed like we were just below elite.

  28. Alex James

    Saw Barca and Real Madrid at the Camp Nou yesterday, fulfilling my long cherished dream of watching the Classico. After a weak start, Malcolm was really convincing. If it is true that we tried to get him on loan, we have ended up with the wrong player in Suarez.

  29. Marko

    One could argue that you’re not proper elite until you win the European Cup but it depends on your definition really. We can back to being a serious club again though

  30. Thomas

    @Graham62

    It was actually the season after when we got destroyed by Man Utd. The specialist in failure should’ve been sacked there and then.

    The fact that he wasn’t showed that Arsenal had no real ambition and was more than happy to just make up the numbers. Pathetic.

  31. bennydevito

    PierreFebruary 7, 2019    09:06:52

    “….If Saurez starts ahead of Mhkitaryan and Ozil as the CAM it will tell us all we need to know as to why Saurez was brought in .”

    What will it tell us? You left us hanging.

  32. Bamford10

    QNA

    I never said there were less expensive players that you derided. But there were in fact less expensive players that could have improved / transformed us. The notion that the only way forward for Arsenal was to sign three 75m players was nonsense.

  33. bennydevito

    I would concur that never having won the top level European prize, never having a Balon d’or or world player of the year every now and again and never even retaining the league since the 30s, that we’ve never been elite level.

    Sad, but true.

  34. Dan Ahern

    We can float figures all day but the real problem with buying is the fact is we only seem to eye players Emery has worked with in the past. Perhaps that’s just a product of the January window, but it’s not exactly encouraging. Obviously Sven wasn’t very happy with how much pull he had. And Orn even said Emery moved strongly into the power vacuum left by Wenger, as Sanllehí prefers to stay out of his oily hair. More and more it feels like we need Monchi to come give us a stronger direction fast.

  35. Dissenter

    I suspect that Wenger wouldn’t have stayed had we won the 2006 CL.
    That loss is one of the unforgettable moments of my life. I really wish Wenger [and Arsenal]. That would have crowned the excellent first decade he had at Arsenal.

  36. Dissenter

    Why do we really need a mega star technical director?
    People keep chanting Mochi- Mochi like broken records like he’s the only competent head in world football.

    When the dust settles, it will become clear that not was the big name Sven Mislintat who was loading the club with 29 year-olds. It’s no wonder the board refused to promote him because he was just transferring wealth from Dortmund to Arsenal. It was Sven who recommended Perisic – let that sink in.

  37. englandsbest

    Nothing upset me more than the sale of RVP. Selling him to Man U rubbed salt in the wound. It handed the title to Fergie. That ended any respect I might have had left for Wenger.

    Poor Robin came in for an awful lot of stick, worse even than Ashley. If it were me I’d replace the statue of the Frenchman with one of the best striker I ever saw in an Arsenal shirt. The guy was magic, poetic, balletic, a sight to behold. If I close my eyes, I can relive the thrill of his aerial strikes.

    It pleases me to see fans come to a better understanding. At the time I was a lone voice, all I heard was that his motive was money. Well, a married man with a family entering his final contract is entitled to be concerned about his wage packet. But I don’t believe it was his prime concern.

    A player of his calibre ought to be able to show his kids medals, talk about the titles he won. I have no doubt Wenger told him that he would strengthen the squad, but instead he saw the best players sold off. Wenger was a creep who broke his word. In Robin’s place I would have done the same – and so would all of us. And if there was a twinge of conscience, I would say, ‘the guy bought me for £2m and sold me for £22m.’

    It’s a shame because first place in Robin’s heart, I am pretty sure, is Arsenal.

  38. Marko

    Dan you definitely follow Pedro on Twitter. Outside of Suarez Emery hasn’t worked with any of the signings made since he got here and one could debate the Suarez signing was as much a Raul signing or perhaps just the only one we could get over the line. The power vacuum stuff is hilarious we replaced the all powerful Wenger with the all powerful Emery. Oh purleese

  39. qna

    Again Bamford. Without the benefit of hindsight, who were you calling for at the time? The thing about those “expensive” players that I was calling for is that they were costly because they were usually in demand by other big clubs.

    At the time when we had a reasonably decent team, those were the players we needed to go after. We were usually 3 good signings away from a team that could compete with the successful clubs. It’s now drifted out to 9 or 10.

  40. bennydevito

    Dan Ahem,

    I really think we should be looking at players closer to home; your Lascelles, Grealishes, Clarkes etc. Apparently City will be bidding £50m for Chillwell and £30m for Wan Bissaka. These really are the sorts of players we should be looking at as well as throwing our own yoingsters into the mix.

    We really should be steering clear of any players English or foreign that are 29 or over.

  41. Marko

    You’re a strange old bird dissenter. Don’t like it when people talk about Monchi don’t like it when people talk about Mavropanos. Very hard to impress. I would imagine Monchi’s track record is why he’d be an exciting hire. I wouldn’t mind Overmars but Ajax are something else entirely they’re a club who don’t really buy well but develop well and I don’t think it’d be the same over here. Edu as well. There’s probably pros and cons to all but more pros with Monchi his work ethic is apparently good

  42. Dissenter

    qna
    You were one of the few people here who wanted Sanchez sold pronto
    You, myself, Carts and Cesc Appeal [could be forgetting others] were in that lonely group in 2017. Bamfird was in the other camo of thise who wanted us to keep him.

    You don’t have to prove anything to Bamford tbh.
    We needed those big signings at the time and we could have afforded them with good custodianship.

  43. Marko

    I have no doubt Wenger told him that he would strengthen the squad, but instead he saw the best players sold off. Wenger was a creep who broke his word.

    Did it to more than a few over the years. Last he did it to was Sanchez

  44. Marko

    Wan Bissaka is definitely someone we should be looking at. Fantastic talent and being in London should give us an edge. Be awful if he ended up at Spurs

  45. Freddie Ljungberg

    BennyD

    We have been linked to Konate, 19 yo, Kamara 19 yo, and Ginter, 25 yo, for CB. Also Grimaldo 23 yo linked today for LB. Troussard 24 yo for the wing. Rabiot 23 yo for CM. All of these links have been this week.

    These are the kind of signings we should be looking at doing, even Ginter at 25 is still young enough to play 6-7 years for us. Would prefer one of the younger ones though.

    Only one Emery has worked with is Rabiot and I would take him in a heartbeat.

    The profile of players we will be targeting in the summer when we have actual money to buy is obviously going to be different from January when all we could do was loan. Some posters still seem to struggle with that fact.

  46. Dan Ahern

    Marko I don’t quite follow what you mean.

    Only player we signed was a former Emery guy. Sure he was a Raul guy too but that doesn’t take away from it.

    We also wanted Nkunku, and if that didn’t happen, according to Orn, N’zonzi. And before the window the rumour was we’d try to recruit Banega. All former Emery guys.

    Granted, the wingers we wanted weren’t from him, but that’s still an awful lot of former-player-based recruitment.

  47. bennydevito

    I would love Overmars if it meant we focused more on developing our own talent plus he could tap into the next generation of Dutch maestros. Yes please.

  48. Marko

    We have been linked to Konate, 19 yo, Kamara 19 yo, and Ginter, 25 yo, for CB. Also Grimaldo 23 yo linked today for LB. Troussard 24 yo for the wing. Rabiot 23 yo for CM. All of these links have been this week.

    Trossard aside these links to me are mouthwatering. Grimaldo is one of the best young LB’s in Europe and Konate and Sarr are very highly rated CB’s with pace. Ginter is interesting too didn’t quite work out at Dortmund but was highly rated. 23 appearences for Germany too

  49. Bamford10

    QNA

    I don’t remember who I might have been talking up at that time, but that’s also totally irrelevant. The club doesn’t sign players on the basis of what Bamford10 or QNA think; that’s why we have a chief scout and a host of scouts who report to him. They know quality players that can be signed for less than 75m; whether I know of such players is irrelevant. The notion that Arsenal was going to solve its starting XI and squad issues by signing three 75m players was ridiculous, even if I couldn’t personally tell you which 20m this or 40m that was a good shout (and a more reasonable way forward for the club). Such players existed, and the notion that we were going to spend 225m on three players wasn’t reasonable.

  50. MGooner

    As long as the owners tell us the truth about our finances, I have no issue with them.

    Football is a sports where you give your best and whatever happens happens.

    If the players are doing their level best and get beaten, I will still cheer them on.

  51. Marko

    Dan Chelsea are being linked with Sarabia of Sevilla because he’s having a good season are we to avoid because he played under Emery? Nkunku and Nsoki or Kimpembe are we to avoid these players if they become available because Emery worked with them? People are obsessing about this notion of Emery being too powerful because it’s part of an obvious agenda taking place. He’s not making the signings any say he has is absolutely minimal and that’s it. We didn’t sign Suarez because Emery loves the socks off the lad we signed him because he was barely playing and was available on loan with no obligation to buy and that’s it.

  52. Freddie Ljungberg

    Marko

    Yeah, Troussard is the odd man out there for sure, but nice to see us getting linked with promising young players instead of the older mediocre ones we’ve been reading about for too long. Not just young players either but young players with top flight experience that can help us now and with scope for improvement.

    Just have to make it to the summer and hopefully sneak CL.

  53. qna

    Bamford.: They know quality players that can be signed for less than 75m

    But that’s the thing though. They didn’t know did they. And apparently I knew better 99% of the time. I seriously can’t understand why you and everybody else weren’t as mad as I was when we were signing these guys like Arteta, Podolski, Gervinho, Welbeck, Elneny…. the list is endless. None of these guys were cheap Bamford. We threw good money down the drain on mediocre players that we were never in a million years going to win trophies with. Fans like you would justify it and say we need squad players. That’s all we ever bought. Squad players. When you have 25 squad players on your list you don’t compete for the big trophies.

    You’re right it doesn’t matter what qna or Bamford thought. But fuck me dead that they didn’t have anybody in that organisation that couldn’t see as plain as day what I could see from thousands of miles away without seeing any one of these players play live.

  54. Graham62

    Thomas

    You’re right, my mistake, the 8-2 debacle was six months after the Birmingham defeat.

    How time flies.

    So many wonderful memories.

  55. Marko

    Freddie it seems like we’re actually actively working already on potential summer signings which is good. It’s honestly the only way we’re going to be successful again making shrewd moves before other clubs. I would like to see us announce something we’ve lined up for in the summer like Bayern with Pavard, Barcelona with De Jong and Chelsea with Pulisic. The obvious one would be Rabiot but he’s probably waiting to see if we make Champions league or if someone else comes in. I’d like us to line up Pepe for the summer

  56. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    Pedro

    One question.

    How do do it all do it what they do it for.?

    Won’t somebody tell.
    If only we knew it how do it all do it , you can bet we’d be doing it as well.

  57. Pierre

    Marko
    “. We didn’t sign Suarez because Emery loves the socks off the lad we signed him because he was barely playing and was available on loan with no obligation to buy and that’s it”

    Now let me get this right

    You are saying that Emery doesn’t particularly rate Saurez but he thought he would bring him in to Arsenal football club because he wasn’t good enough to get in the team but he was available ( probably because no one else wanted him) so we may as well bring him into the club as we won’t have to sign him at the end of the season

    Sounds like a very professional way to run a top football club ..I’m sure we will go a long way using that philosophy.

  58. Freddie Ljungberg

    It’s nice going into a window with a plan, except for last summer we haven’t been blessed with that very often.

    Can’t see us announcing anyone early, it’s just not the Arsenal way, unsettling player and club, class and all that jazz, would have been nice though. Maybe if the fans (outside a couple of loonies like now) start getting really restless.

  59. Valentin

    Rabiot is a decent player, but I am not convinced that he would fit for the EPL. Coaches tend to use him as 8 or a 6, however He see himself as an attacking midfielder. So he could be a replacement/upgrade on Xhaka. However he also comes with a lot of baggage.

    1) his mother is his agent and she is a nightmare to deal with. Every clubs she tried to negotiate, have said the same thing. Greedy does not even start to state it. He wants between 12 and 18 millions a year Net as salary because of the Bosman. That is Crazy money. Even more than what Özil is on now.

    2) he has higher opinion of himself than nearly all the coaches he has worked with. That lead to attitude problem. He refused to run during a friendly, because it was cold and he was afraid of getting injured. He refused to be on the French stand-by list for the World Cup, because he thought he should have been on the main list anyway. Imagine that kind of attitude at club level.

    3) he does not like when players put him under pressure and tackle him. After his first red card for rent, he will be targeted by teams and I am not sure that he would be able to handle that side of the game. In the premiership, referees are a lot more lenient than in the rest of Europe.

    4) he tends to slow and accelerate the game not always at the right time. That is not a problem at PSG who dominates Ligue 1, but inthe EPL, if you are out of sync with your team you lose the ball and leave your team open to counter attack.

  60. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    Pedro

    We’re off down to the village fete, we go there every autumn, we chase the girls an pinch their buns for the butter that’s inside them.

  61. leon

    If you believe this story,which I take with a huge pinch of salt, but even if it’s true , fans need to beer in mind that very few clubs pay the whole transfer upfront it’s usually over the course of the contract. Contract me anyone but did the club pay the whole of Tiera transfer upfront I don’t think they did. The club will also will be willing players , so that will help bring down the wage bill. Bottom line I think it’s more 100 million and if the club can dump some of the dead wood and bring two top centre backs, I will be happy.

  62. azed

    “Can’t see us announcing anyone early, it’s just not the Arsenal way, unsettling player and club, class and all that jazz, would have been nice though”

    I’m pretty sure we pissed up Inter and Perisic.

  63. Freddie Ljungberg

    Valentin

    He sees himself as an attacking midfielder? No he sees himself as a box to box player, a CM, doesn’t mean he can’t do defensive duties as well. We could do a lot worse than playing any 2 of Torreira Rabiot Guen at the base of midfield or even all 3 in some matches.

    Also, do you think Xhaka is an attacking midfielder? That’s weird.

  64. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    Pedro

    In design toshiba are to exponents
    They always specify best quality components.
    Built to last longer as a matter of fact.
    So it still sounds good when you give it some of that….

    Hello hello toshiba

  65. gambon

    A lot of the links are very interesting.

    If we dont make the CL, I think we really do need to go back to the drawing board. Buy quality younger players under 23 years old, and rebuild the squad.

    If we make the CL I think it will be slightly different.

    At the end of the day, its become impossible to build a great team of top 23-28 year olds, because the transfer market has gone insane.

    Look at Pepe. He is absolutely the number 1 player in Europe that we could do with right now……but as a result of recent form, he will cost £70m.

    A lot of teams can pay that because they can offload a similarly priced player. Due to epic mismanagement, we cant.

    Spurs could sell Eriksen or Son and sign Pepe
    Chelsea could sell Hazard and sign Pepe
    City could sell Mahrez and sign Pepe
    Liverpool could sell one of their 3 strikers and sign Pepe

    We would sell Mykhitaryan for £10m and wonder where the other £60m is coming from.

  66. Freddie Ljungberg

    Azed

    True, we did. Maybe things are changing, good if it is, we’ve been far to nice in the transfer market.

  67. Receding Hairline

    We pissed off a club in China and one in Italy this winter alone, I’m sure Barcelona are pissed off though they didn’t get their obligation to buy clause.

    I don’t think we are in the business of playing nice anymore

  68. azed

    “We would sell Mykhitaryan for £10m and wonder where the other £60m is coming from.”

    We could get 50k and some fortnite points from Ozil.

  69. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    Pedro

    Chicken on ham don’t take long…..
    Garlic sausage meaty tounge…

    You can make them special bake em grill or fry them….
    Just try them eat them you can’t beat them….

    Matterson make them an there’s no doubt all the yummy in there you bring it out.

  70. gambon

    Ginter on the other hand, im not keen on

    Isnt he significantly slow?

    Hes basically another Chambers/Holding. Good on the ball, not physically impressive.

    Will be a disaster in EMerys system.

  71. Freddie Ljungberg

    gambon

    Don’t think he’s that slow, but he’s definitely not as athletic as the other 2, at his age there’s not that much room for improvement either. Would prefer Kamara or Konate for sure.

    Considering Leipzig are already talking about extending ESRs loan there could be something in the Konate links. Would be a good deal for us, getting ESR experience at a top club but away from the spotlight in England and get a top talent at CB in the bargain.

    Talks that we want to use Monreal in a deal for Grimaldo, if true it’s a very good use of that one year extension in his contract.

  72. gambon

    Konate is an interesting one.

    RBL sporting director said they have an excellent relationship with Arsenal.

    Dangle the carrot of ESR on a free loan, and maybe one other of Nketiah, Saka, Nelson or Amaechi and see if they want to do business.

  73. Dan Ahern

    Marko — Those links are great, I was worried stuff like that would drop off the radar with Sven leaving.

    But you’re deluding yourself too. You really think we signed Denis Suárez for no reason other than him being available? Come on.

  74. Marko

    Ginter on the other hand, im not keen onIsnt he significantly slow?

    Not significantly slow when I’ve seen him. Very competent at RB too but I think it’s his leadership qualities that stand out for him. You did say yesterday one young CB and a 25-29 year old CB.

  75. azed

    “But you’re deluding yourself too. You really think we signed Denis Suárez for no reason other than him being available? Come on.”

    We wanted someone who could play on the wings and they were three options( Suarez, Carrasco and Perisic) and we signed the only one we could get on our terms so yes the only reason we signed him was because he was the only one that was available to us on our condition.

  76. Dan Ahern

    Also you’re missing the point. It’s not about avoiding players because they are Emery alumni. The issue is narrowing your targets to who you’re used to already.

  77. Marko

    You really think we signed Denis Suárez for no reason other than him being available? Come on.

    Sure why not. He was available not getting game time cost feck all for a loan fee and they knew him and that’s it. You think he was a long term target? The only reason we didn’t get Perisic was because they wanted an obligation and the only reason we didn’t get Carrasco was because the loan fee was way too small and we couldn’t/wouldn’t budge on it. This worry of us just bringing in oldies Emery has worked with isn’t true

  78. Cesc Appeal

    Wan Bissaka would be a great signing, especially with Bellerin being hit and miss and returning from an ACL which is always a worry.

    But I think he’s going to cost a lot.

    Bringing in players like Wan Bissaka and Konate starts to move the defence to what Emery wants or a defence that is more likely to work in an Emery system.

  79. Marko

    The issue is narrowing your targets to who you’re used to already.

    What evidence is their of that other than Suarez? There is no issue. We signed Torreira and not Nzonzi and we signed Sokratis instead of Simon Kjaar.

  80. Dan Ahern

    Are you auditioning for PR officer?

    Summer signings are irrelevant. Emery is a summer signing himself. You think they were sitting around jerking each other off until the new manager came in and told them who to buy?

    But look at the window once he’s been in a few months. Head of recruitment decides to leave, and instead of working to pick up a desperately needed RB, or even a CB, we’re focusing on midfield and wing. Why’s midfield a concern? Well for one you’ve got Ramsey and Özil benched by the manager. Who do we look at instead? A bunch of guys the manager worked with in the past.

    And look, I’d be excited to sign Nkunku too. That’s not the point. Look at how the power’s working now. Emery doesn’t trust certain players and bins them while mainly looking to replace with his own known quantities.

    Feel free to not be concerned but that does not look like strong management to me.

  81. Valentin

    @Freddie,

    I don’t see Xhaka as an attacking midfielder more as a mix between a 8 and a 6.
    Rabiot see himself as a mix between a 8 and a 10. That was the issue at PSG with previous coaches who wanted to play him as a mix of 6 and 8.

    Because of the evolution of tactics, box to box midfield player are a dying breed. What people are looking are versatile 6 with a good passing range. Fernandinho, Kante being the archetype. They can break any attack, but they can either release quickly the ball forward or run with the ball.

    I am not saying we shouldn’t try to bring him. Just that we need to make sure that we bring him for the right position at the right price.

  82. azed

    At the end of the season, Ryan Sessegnon will have one year left one his deal. If Fulham don’t survive, we should be in there with 20M and loan them some of our youngsters for the season.

    Or 10M and Calum Chambers.

  83. Dissenter

    azed
    Ryan Sessegnon has been underwhelming.
    He needs a major rehab before he can be placed back on that high potential talent group again.

  84. Marko

    Who do we look at instead? A bunch of guys the manager worked with in the past.

    Suarez, Perisic, Carrasco and Nkunku… he’s worked with two but yes very worrying. I’d be even more concerned if we were linked with Kimpembe, Sarabia,Meunier fuck even Mbappe would have in sweats.

    Feel free to not be concerned but that does not look like strong management to me.

    I am very unconcerned with the binning of players like Özil and with replacing them. But again just so that we’re on the same page you’re worried about us just signing up old players that have worked with Emery? I’m not in the slightest. That one single player who worked with him previously who is on loan with an option to buy doesn’t worry me one bit

  85. Marko

    He needs a major rehab before he can be placed back on that high potential talent group again.

    Ridiculous. 2 goals and 5 assists in 22 games after 16 goals and 8 assists in the championship last season all while making the step up at 18 years of age. Honestly what exactly do you expect from the lad

  86. Marko

    Funny thing with that is if Sessegnon was doing better we would never be able to afford him or stand a chance of getting him.

  87. bennydevito

    Dan,

    You make some really good points regarding Emery but don’t forget it’s come out the last few days that it’s the hierarchy and not Emery that want shot of Ozil and Emery could be being leaned on not to play him.

    Ramsey has also played a lot too and has been a key player recently.

    Totally agree as to why didn’t we go all out for a right back? Maybe there were no decent ones available on a loan basis though?

  88. Dissenter

    Considering Emery last job was at PSG, it wouldn’t be such a bad policy of signing players he’s worked with before.
    Suarez came from Barca FFS, not Milwall
    The players associated with Emery’s past experience are better than most of the overpaid nonsense we’ve stocked up.

  89. bennydevito

    Interesting piece on sky sports today in which Emery states he doesn’t know why Sven is leaving as it’s between him and the club, and that he got on with him very well.

    That puts paid to the likes of Pierre and CG and their ludicrous conspiracies of Emery taking over the club in some sort of power grab. It’s clear with each interview that he’s just the coach and the club are very much in charge and making all the decisions, not him.

    Like it was ever in any doubt. Been there 8 months now he’s running the whole show, course he is.

    https://www.skysports.com/football/news/11670/11630604/unai-emery-says-he-is-his-own-biggest-critic-as-arsenal-bid-to-end-away-day-woes

    Mihkitaryan could be line to feature at the weekend. I know he’s not exactly been a star performer but with him on the right and Iwobi on the left it did give our attack more balance and creativity. Maybe Ozil will start too?

  90. Dissenter

    Marko and azed
    Of course Sessegnon is a great talent but he has been underwhelming when you consider the record he had in the championship.
    He’s 18y/o but that didn’t stop him last season.
    He needs to go to a manager that will help him find his way back. He looks like the new Pochettino project to me. ,

  91. Marko

    That puts paid to the likes of Pierre and CG and their ludicrous conspiracies of Emery taking over the club in some sort of power grab

    They really mean crab people are taking over in the guise of Emery. He’s not actually human you see he’s made up of tiny crabs

  92. Dan Ahern

    Benny — I just find the whole Özil situation bizarre. I understand they’re attempting to freeze him out but in the meantime we’re a) starving for creativity and b) just tanking his value. Imagine how much harder we’re making it to move him when his wages already make it highly unattractive.

    RB should’ve been our #1 priority but instead the #1 priority was not spending. So yeah agree with you it’s because we couldn’t find a good free loanee, but these are extraordinary circumstances.

  93. Marko

    he has been underwhelming when you consider the record he had in the championship. He’s 18y/o but that didn’t stop him last season.

    Yeah who knew there’d be a huge step up from the championship to the premier league. Do you actually hear yourself sometimes he’s 18 ffs. At 16 and 17 he was tearing it up in the championship while others were playing reserve football. At 18 what exactly is he expected to be doing…at Fulham by the way. Find his way back… from where from natural progression from learning I suppose.

  94. azed

    Dissenter

    If Sessegnon had a great season, we would have 0 chance of signing him. There’s a big difference between the EPL and the Championship.
    At Fulham, Sessegnon is under pressure to deliver while at Arsenal he would be just one of the guys.
    Also aren’t we supposed to be moving into the era were we get young players just before they have that breakout season?

  95. bennydevito

    Dan,

    Yes I agree 100% regarding Ozil, at £350k per week just play him already. Start him then take him off on the hour like Mourinho did at Madrid. Complete waste on the bench and his range of passing if not anything else has been missing.

    Play Aubameyang on the left with Ozil, Ramsey and Torriera then Mihki on the right with Lacazette up top.

  96. Pierre

    Bennydevito
    “Interesting piece on sky sports today in which Emery states he doesn’t know why Sven is leaving as it’s between him and the club, and that he got on with him very well.That puts paid to the likes of Pierre and CG and their ludicrous conspiracies of Emery taking over the club in some sort of power grab.”

    You can be quite perceptive with your comments then sometimes you come across as intelligent as Benny from crossroads.( Look him up if you’re not sure)

    Anyway , was a nice try to discredit me but you won’t find any comment from me suggesting that . I have never made a comment on sven leaving simply because no one knows the reason why, it’s all speculation. .

    To be honest I wouldn’t believe much what comes out of Emery’s mouth either as he says he gets on well with Ozil , which is clearly not the case but that’s another story.

  97. bennydevito

    Out of interest; who do we seriously think could take over from Emery if the season ends badly?

    Eddie Howe? Nuno Santo? Both doing great jobs on tight budgets, both great at developing young talent, both tactically astute and both ready for a big job?

  98. Pierre

    Bennydevito
    “Out of interest; who do we seriously think could take over from Emery if the season ends badly?”

    Has to be Marko .

    He would sign anyone who can’t get a game and is available on loan…

  99. Alex James

    Testing, as some previous posts over the last few weeks have disappeared. I have been a member for some years, and am getting rather cross.

  100. Marko

    Has to be Marko .He would sign anyone who can’t get a game and is available on loan…

    Don’t forget dump players who contribute fuck all and fake injuries

  101. Carts

    Sessegnon has struggled massively so far.

    I was at the Emirates where he missed 2 guilt edge chances – I remeber thinking to myself that if he had put those 2 chances away, we could well have lost that game – we were that bad.

    I’m siren sessegnon will come good, but when you compare him to, say Maddison or Vinicius Jr, it’s apparent that those players with less top flight experience have risen to the challenge with more effectiveness.

    Maybe it’s because Fulham are so poor?!

  102. Marko

    Maddison has 5 and 4 in 23 games compared to Sessegnon’s 2 and 5 and he’s got 4 years on him. It’s not a fair comparison and there’s not much difference in their output. Also Sessegnon is somewhere between a LB, a LM and a LW.

  103. gonsterous

    Graham62
    February 7, 2019
    17:22:18

    Remember folks this blog was basically established because people were fed up with Wenger and his boring and predictable methods.Correct me if I’m wrong.

    wrong. This blog was a homage to Wenger actually, hence why there is a French title. But the comments got anti Wenger and unlike untold, people were not blind here.
    Then pedro joined the gang and since its his blog, although he tried to keep a neutral profile, he say the negative impacts of arsene Wenger. Sadly, we still have posters who are brain washed into thinking nothing is Wengers fault.

  104. Goobergooner

    Pierre
    “QNA
    I am in agreement with you regarding building a team with our younger players but I’m not sure Emery agrees with that philosophy going by the comments from ornstein yesterday .

    Torreira was much more effective defensively earlier in the season until Emery told him to attack more , since then defensively he has been suspect as he hasn’t the legs or the energy to play box to box ..”

    Pierre you are all over the shop as usual.

    Emery doesn’t want to build a youth team because he wants experience according to you. Well last time I checked a 25 year old Suarez was younger than nzonzi, and nkunku is 21.
    Apart from that He has played 19 yr old guen and 22 torreira, and leno in a major part of this season. Also iwobi bellerin and holding.

    So the only 30+ signing was Licht, who was never meant to be a starter. So eat a brick on that mate.

    Also yeah maybe torr was given a different role during the season, but that is because our other midfielders just don’t cut it.
    The reason torr uis fatigued, apart from no rest and a long world cup, is because he covered for the absolute averageness next to him, whether just the shit of xhaka or helping a young player in guen develop.

  105. Pierre

    Goobergooner
    This is the quote from Ornstein 2 days ago .

    ““I’m told Unai Emery likes experienced players, he likes to go with players he knows & trusts.”

    ““So when the Guendouzi signing was being discussed, Emery would have also liked, as an alternative if the Guendouzi one couldn’t be done or as a more immediate signing he could trust for the here and now, to have signed Steven Nzonzi.”

    “That indicates he likes players he can trust and that he’s worked with at former clubs, and who have experience to do the job now.”

    I think that clears that up

    As for Torreira ,he was quoted as saying in December that Emery wanted him to attack more and I made the point that since December , torreira’s and the teams performance have dropped alarmingly.

    Asking Torreira to attack more has shown up Torreira’s weaknesses in that he does t possess the energy to get up and down the pitch , he has no pace to recover and he looks tired from having to cover so much space.

    His early season form was excellent as we were playing to his strengths , he was protecting the back 4 , he was dictating the play from midfield , and he was conserving his energy for making the tackles and closing down the spaces which are the strongest areas of his game..

    If Emery was to return to having Torriera in a more holding role I believe we will see Arsenal have much more positive results and per for the final third of the season..

    If course,that is just my opinion , if you agree with Emery and are happy with Torreira playing further upfield then that’s your opinion.

  106. bennydevito

    Pierre,

    I think with Mihkitaryan back, we’ll have a more balanced side and,Torriera will be able to do what he does best; sit back and break up play with the odd attacking burst ala Tottenham.

    I think our attacking play thus results have suffered with both Mihki and Ozil out of the team and it will be interesting to see if they improve now they’re back. I’m not saying the pair are world beaters but on their day are very capable and will bring much needed balance to our side.

    Ozil should start then come off early, it’s how Mourinho got the best out of him at Madrid. Then take him off and bring Guendouzi or Xhaka on to tighten things up.

  107. Confidentgoner

    Agree Ozil needs to be pulled off early or brought in late when players are tired.

    I would say depending on the team. If its a team that defends deep, then Ozil may be better utilized as a sub.

  108. qna

    Benny.

    Auba (£60m) – 3/10. Too old. We could not afford to spend our only big transfer probably for the next few years as well on a guy who will just deprecate that away. Should have bought a player that we could possibly sell for £100m in 4 years time.

    Torreira- 10/10
    Guen – 10/10

    Nuff said

    Leno – 6/10 – We could do better, but for the price he is good value for money. He isnt world class, but you have to be prepared to pay for that. He’s good with his feet and allows us to play out from the back.

    Sokratis – 7/10 – too old, but solid enough and not overly expensive.

    Mkhitariyan- 0/10 – horrible decision. The error was made 6 months earlier when Sanchez wasn’t sold. But this trade was made on tilt and was a disaster.

    Licht- 2/10 – free signing, no money, the fact that he is playing shows it would have been an even worse disaster if we got nobody. But guy is cooked. Should have got a proper signing.

    Mav – 9/10 – for the 1.8m this was great business. Actually looks like he could have a future as a best 11. Even if he is squad depth, this is how we should be acquiring our squad depth. We need more signings like this and Guen.

  109. bennydevito

    Well, up until December Mihki had made 20 appearances in all competitions and along with Welbeck’s injury our attacking options did suffer and it was December that the 22 game unbeaten run came to an end.

    Coincidence? Probably, but with Welbeck and Mihki injured, Ozil not featuring, Emery’s options have been limited in the attacking play so it’s bound to have had some bearing on our form.

  110. Pierre

    Bennydevito
    To be honest , I haven’t a clue how Emery will approach the Huddersfield game.

    I feel he needs to settle on a formation, a pattern of play and a settled 11.
    All this changing personnel and formation every game is not really working is it.

    I have said previously that we should revert back to our early season very successful formation of 4-2-3-1, this formation hasn’t been used since before the Bournemouth game in November.

    As for who Emery will pick on Saturday , who knows.
    Saurez is likely to be in , will be play in the wing as apparently he is a winger (debatable).

    I can’t see Ozil getting anywhere near the team now with the arrival of Saurez so let’s hope the team puts on a good performance .
    Our away form has been dire since November , this is a must win game or the shit will hit the fan .
    A good win and performance tomorrow and then a positive result in the Europa
    on Thursday could set us on our way for a good finish to the season.

    Tomorrow’s game will tell us a lot about the team ,the manager and the players…

  111. Samesong

    Tomorrow’s game will tell us a lot about the team ,the manager and the players…

    Will it?

    Huddersfield are fighting for their lives at the moment, assuming you think that it’s banker 3 points?

    Arsenal will either batter their opponents or will struggle to get behind a team of ten men.

    I would drop Auba and play Laca Ozil and Suarez some creativity to open up that back four is needed and give Suarez some minutes.

  112. bennydevito

    qna,

    Good scores.

    I’d sell Aubameyang this summer especially if money’s tight. I’ve read Barcelona are looking to replace L Suarez and believe Aubameyang would fit right in there and with Raul in place we could do a deal, plus if they’re looking to move Coutinho on maybe Aubameyang plus £40m might swing it or we sell him straight for £50m.

  113. Alex James

    Was at the Classico in Barca the other night. Coutinho was awful and Malcolm excellent, after a shaky start. If there were any truth in the Malcolm rumours, it is a pity we got Suarez and not him.

  114. Samesong

    Benny

    Where are the goals going to come from? Laca, Coutinho?

    We don’t need to sell Auba. As poor as he has been recently he is still our top goalscorer.

  115. bennydevito

    Samesong,

    I hear what you’re saying but he misses a lot of chances and isn’t getting any younger, 1 more season and he will be in decline. I’m just being pragmatic.

    Invest the money in someone younger and throw our youngsters like Saka in.

    I might be in the minority here but I reckon Zaha would be good for us, and there must be other good young prospects out there who we could sign then sell on at a profit in 3 – 4 years time.

  116. bennydevito

    What about Timo Werner of RB Leipzig? Liverpool are looking at him and don’t we have players on loan there? Having good relations with them could give us an edge in signing him.