The summer is a time when internet heroes are made and destroyed.
‘IS HE LEGIT?”
‘NO WAY YOU SAID THIS IN 2019!’
‘GUY HAS AN AGENDA SMH’
Truth is, it’s incredibly hard to gain an accurate shake on transfer rumours because the stories are generated three ways.
Agents creating PR to make frantic scouts aware their players are available, or to instigate contract talks.
Clubs creating PR to shake up players and lower their price, to hawk interest in their own players, or deflect attention from what they are really doing with other deals.
TV, Press and Blog harvesting summer traffic. Le Grove numbers go through the roof in the summer, transfers are simply great fun… a mate of a mate… a rogue agent… a hopeful dream.
Then when transfers are real and actually happening, things can go south really quickly. So you might have had a nailed on story that falls apart and makes you look like a total wally.
It’s all a big mess, but the internet has made it more so because there wasn’t really that much of a market back in the day. Now you have millions of people partaking in the factory of information, so you have to tread very carefully to land the truth.
The Daily Mail is running with a story that the Arsenal Brain Trust is hassling Stan K for cash to push deals over the line this summer. This sort of information is golden, it’s elite dynamite that must have come from the very top… but it only gets 168 words?
Please… when I get good info, you get 2000 words here because if you’re doing PROPER journalism, the contact should give you the details that allow you to paint a vivid picture so it comes across as genuine in the media.
The guts of this story don’t add up to me. I think it’s pretty clear that the leadership of Ivan G lasted so long under Stan K because of one key attribute… he never, ever, went begging Stan for money. That must have been part of the deal, keep your mouth shut in the press, don’t harass on Whatsapp and don’t come crying for money every summer. Spend what you generate and not a penny more.
The idea that Raul and Vinnai are out there begging Stan for money is a touch absurd to me, especially so when the money they are asking for is to prop up a hugely inflated signing of a player that is 27 years old. We’re not out here trying to push Joao Felix over the line, we’re not begging for the chance to sign a player that could be worth £300m in 3 years time, we’re supposedly begging Stan to give us money to fund a player that’ll likely be worth far less in 3 years time than he is now. That is not good business when you are skint. Even Stan, with all his blindness to Arsenal, will understand the basic economics of this deal are risky and likely not worth it long term.
JUST AS A NOTE: I think Zaha would add a lot to our forward line. He’s a great player, powerful, skilful, a bit nasty… but be honest, who wouldn’t add more to our forward line than Iwobi? Zaha is a lazy next level for a club that talks about finding an edge with scouting, technology and youth.
Also, there is no way a club that’s been banging on about structure, the future and all these other bits could be in a situation a week out from preseason where they’re having to go back to their boss cap in hand. That would make them look highly incompetent, it’d make them look like they’ve not planned properly, it would damage their chances of progression long-term and the whole thing would have next to zero chances of success.
So in short, what I’m saying is this: Don’t believe everything you read.
The summer is playing out as we expected.
We are struggling to shift on our deadwood, in the main, because everyone knows we are desperate to move these players on. The prospective clubs buying are looking for a good deal and I’d imagine the players know that the lower the exit fee is, the higher their new salary will be.
We seem to be struggling to bring in players because we are fighting a chairman that has an inflated view of what Zaha is worth. He has to look strong in front of his fans after letting Wan-Bissaka go very early in his career, so he’ll make this like pulling teeth.
We’re also struggling because we don’t have a filled out structure at the club. Emery will be vying for power, choosing players is the ultimate control, we know he’s been scouting. Raul likes to get in the weeds with wheeler-dealer networks, so he’ll have ideas, despite not being a true footballing man. Edu will probably be CC’d into e-mails and have opinions. It’s a structural mess that probably has battling visions of what the future should look like.
Unai Emery is going to looking for players that can do the job now. The average age of his signings at Sevilla was a little over 27 years old, he targetted journeyman that the club could flip, what he’d get was hard work, grit and solid performances… that’s what he needs next season. He can’t fuck around with kids, he won’t care about bringing beauty to the field, he needs players that are going to drag the club to 4th.
Problem is, Raul and Stan K will know that this sort of approach to the game has a severe impact on what the football looks like. It stunts the growth of kids coming through the ranks. It carries high risk because older players make more money and then you can’t shift them if the idea fails.
We have just tried an expensive version of what Sevilla used to do very successfully and it failed. In fact, we are in season two of trying to buy our way to 4th.
I struggle to believe that Edu will be a technical director that wants to move in the Emery direction, but he’s not here, so we are where we are.
So there lies the challenge… a lack of vision, a lack of good people in the right jobs, clogged arteries in and out, and the slow cold of winter of reality settling in… we are a tier two club with tier 3 ideas of how to fix things.
What a miserable bastard I am… truly, I am so sorry you have to read this every day. x
P.S. Love Monreal, but the fact we’re giving him an extension tells you the trouble we’re in.