What’s the plan, Edu/Raul?

by & filed under News Review.

If you came here this morning expecting a pat on the head for sitting on your arse for three months, here it is.

Well done you.

Now let’s crash into the MONSTROSITY that is Arsenal FC.

Firstly, the FA released the agent fee data and certain sections of the fanbase seem to be very pleased the number is only £13m. This comment from Terraloon might help you work through your joy and temper it with a little bit of caution.

You can not determine from the list of payments made in that period how much the club have agreed to pay out in respect of transfers in.The schedule only records the money paid out directly to the club by intermediaries over a set period. It doesn’t tell us what those payments were in respect of or indeed when those transactions actually happened.

The second attachment does tell us what transactions happened but again we don’t know over what time period the agents will receive their fees

Agents get paid for all sorts of things such as arranging contract extensions , facilitating loans out , transfers out and yes transfers in.

Often clubs agree to bear the costs of an agent acting on behalf of a player but when they do those sums don’t appear on the list they are paid in effect via payroll and treated as a benefit in kind.

To prove the point look at two clubs. Liverpool and Chelsea . These two clubs in the period 1/2/19-31/1/20 . These two clubs paid out £30.38 million and £26.183 million respectively.

In effect two transfer windows. Liverpool paid out just £8.5 million in respect of a couple of minor transfers in and Chelsea who were unable to sign anyone In the summer 2019 window bar Kovacic whose loan they made permanent and in the January 20 window they didn’t sign anyone.

I think we can move on from that and leave the magical thinkers to their own conclusions.

What I do want to talk about is the bigger picture with Arsenal, because we’re missing it when we’re debating whether Soares has a nice attitude or David Luiz is an agent of death.

Arsenal don’t have a plan.

You can hunt for it, you can retrofit excuses, but the simple fact is there is no coherence in what we’re doing.

Why? Because we’re not honest about our standing in football at the moment.

David Luiz, Cedric Soares and maybe Pablo Mari offer no real long term value to Arsenal. It’s money down the drain unless they drive us to the Champions League. Even then, what was the point? They have no resale value, they are not helping us to win the thing, they have limited ceilings.

We are pissing money up the wall with no credible plan to move the club forward.

Ivan Gazidis threw a lot of money at making the Champions League by bringing in senior players just before Wenger left. It didn’t work. Raul threw massive money at senior players when Emery arrived and it didn’t work. Now we’re 12th in the league and we’re doing the same again. Even if it succeeds, we’re still throwing money down the drain. At best, we’re thinking a year in advance.

‘Maybe Willian can help us’ isn’t a strategy, it’s naive.

Why is this happening? Because we don’t know who we are and there’s no real strategy.

We shouldn’t be debating drossy that had their best years 5 years ago. Arsenal should be honest about their position in the world football and rip the plaster this summer. Move on the senior players that are letting us down. A clean sweep. That’s Auba, Lacazette, Mustafi, Kola, Luiz and the loan players.

If Torreira doesn’t like England, sell him. If Matteo is a head case with a grim attitude and Barcelona have £60m, sell him on.

Then decide on the plan. If it’s Borussia Dortmund 2.0, go for it. There is absolutely no reason, outside a coherent plan, that we can’t replicate what they do.

Build a player profile. 20-24 years old. Fit. Mobile. Fast. A good level of emotional intelligence.

Know where to pick them up from. Look at the Eastern European leagues. Fish from the same ponds where the elite youth end up going, like RB Salzburg. Act quick.

Return to the future. Contacts football is shit and it rarely delivers. Ban Kia from the training ground. Never let Canales in a brainstorm again. Set a process for how you get to the right list of players. Leave no one in any doubt as to why you signed a name.

Stop trying to do things the easy way. ‘Call Kia’ is how great clubs die. Relying on people with a conflict of interest to give you good advice on players is quite frankly, fucking embarrassing.

Our current strategy is shit. Load up with bums, and pray to the footballing gods that one season, it might work out. That is not a winning formula. It hasn’t worked for Manchester United with a real budget, and it won’t work for Arsenal who have spent all their cash and borrowed from future pots.

Arsenal has a great coach. There’s a reason all the leaks to the media have cited everyone bar him for the mess. He’s in a tough spot. He’s probably worried about his future right now, he’s likely struggling with the dynamics of having two bosses with very bad taste, and he’s probably wondering how he’s going to get a turn out of these players.

But so would any coach. Carlo and Jose are hardly flying. OGS didn’t exactly cover himself in glory last season. A select few of the Chelsea fanbase have been calling Frank a fraud all season. Implementing change after picking up a midseason fire is difficult.

Our senior players have been problematic. The contract issues have spilt out into the training ground. The pay cut wasn’t great. He’s had a red card. A bunch of injuries. His season has been derailed by a club that was hoping to deal with these issues this summer, rather than during the season.

But don’t think that has the coach down and out. He has all the ingredients to attain greatness and I am sure given time, a good summer, and the culling of the dross, he’ll find a way to make it work. People giving up after such a short period of time will realise in time that the only magic bullet now is the reshaping of the squad in the vision of the coach.

There will be more bumps. We will lose again. This season isn’t ending in glory.

However, keep the faith. The coach will prove the doubters wrong is Raul and Edu can pull it together this summer. If that doesn’t happen, we’re fucked whoever sits in the hot seat.

Tonight, we play Southampton in a bid to escape 11th position. What a moment. It’s time for a reaction from the squad. A moment for the manager to show that he can rally a nightmare situation and make some magic happen. Maybe… we’ll see a performance.

Also, Sheffield United and Palace are opening up a some space for us to chase… maybe. Sad times that I’m excited by that.

Let’s see what happens!

See you in the comments x

692 Responses to “What’s the plan, Edu/Raul?”

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  1. Ishola70

    Manchester United are looking better than they have done previously for quite a while.

    Still a long way to go for them but they look healthier now.

    That’s what one really good signing can do for you = Fernandes.

    Arsenal await a similar signing that can have this affect.

    Contracts, agents, pandemic, lack of vision. If Arteta doesn’t get his fullbacks past the halfway line again tonight I have no sympathy for him.

  2. Guns of Hackney

    I don’t believe Edu or Raul have the smarts to work out what we need. Clearly this is the case so I’m not even sure why you (Peter) is asking the question…even rhetorically.

    They had a chance to start again after Arsene and then Emery but no, back to the drawing board that was Arsene’s old drawing board!

    Arteta is onto a loser. Not his fault. He’ll leave Arsenal and go on to be a great. We probably WILL end up with Dyche and only CG will be happy about that.

  3. Spanishdave

    Arteta is not imposing himself at the club.
    He’s lost and reverting to fire fighting.
    The midfield is our biggest problem as it adds pressure on the defenders when teams just piss past our pathetic midfielders.
    Torreira is missing his mummy so send him home.
    Cellobos is dancing around in circles most the time trying to disappear up his arse and Ozil is dreaming of being president of Turkey.
    The club needs to wake up but can’t see it happening with Stan and co

  4. Freddie Ljungberg

    “Raul and Edu can pull it together this summer. If that doesn’t happen, we’re fucked whoever sits in the hot seat.”

    Wait, what happened to our top 4 squad?

    Glad it’s dawning on you Pedro that we’re lacking quality in important positions and we won’t progress without addressing that.

    Surprised it took so long to realise, but hey, better late than never.

    I’m guessing “the plan” is to get 3 defensive covers in for low money, then ship out 3 CBs raising money to add to the midfield pot. Maybe add Kola to the outs too if we can get a free transfer in his place.

    That would be the logical conclusion at least.

    Throw Partey in there like the rumours suggest and we’ll see a different Guen too when he doesn’t have to do everything by himself and have a proper senior player next to him.

    Then we just need someone to fill our vacant Cam position and the football should improve by default.

  5. Wasi

    With the patching up of Defence with cheap options and continuous links to Partey I believe and hope that the club is going to go all out for Partey this summer.
    If we could address only 1 position this summer that would impact and improve the side it would be Midfield. If we look at the profile of player we lack the most right now. Id say it is the profile of players like Partey.
    And get this Partey is NOT a defensive or a box to box or a creative midfielder
    He is a very good all round midfielder . 1 tier below the world class bracket is where he is right now imo.
    He is like a jack of all trades but a very good jack at that . He has got above average to very good numbers in all the midfield specs/ categories like Tackles , passes , progressions , etc.
    He can be a 6 and an 8. I hope we do get him this summer.
    We have specialists like Xhaka who can pass very good , Torreira who can Tackle and intercept very well , Ozil who can create very well , Guen who can cover the ground very well. Partey brings all these qualities into one. And 45 mil is not that big an amount if we look at the dross we have lying around and the funds we can generate.
    I do hope we can get him. Would instantly improve the side .

    As for Pedro
    You say we cant read a lot into the 13 mil number.
    Well we can only read whats in front of us. And what’s in front of us is that you have been proven wrong BIG time about your Raul allegations. Maybe we will pay the money in instalments or maybe Raul cut a deal with his friends that benefitted the club .
    If its the latter , Great.
    If it is the former , then its no big deal. Look at Liverpool who didnt spend more than a combined 10 mil in that period but still paid out 30mil .
    Or Chelsea and City who spent more than double our amounts while doing very little business as compared to us.

    We bought/sold/loaned out / loaned in about 15 players and the agent fee was about 13 mil.

    Pool signed a youngster and Minamino and maybe made a few loans and sales. Fees 30 mil.

    Say what you will , the numbers say Raul got the better of Edwards and Txiki and the Chelsea tech. director ( Marina I think).

  6. Ernest Reed

    Sadly Freddie, everything you just said relies on the ability to actually do what you say – there is nothing in the DNA of both Raul and Edu that would or should give anyone confidence that it will or can happen.

  7. Freddie Ljungberg

    Ernest

    Apart from Luiz, which I can kind of understand since we lost Kos late, had spent most of our budget and we wanted PL experience. Raul, during his only window in charge brought in Tierney, Saliba, Pepe and Martinelli.
    I would kill for another window like that. When did we have a better one? That’s 4 long term starters there, all with vast potential, some of them even world class potential. Pretty decent imo. I see Pedro’s propaganda is working.

  8. Ernest Reed

    Wasi, there is little coherence in what you are writing as your criticism of Pedro. You point to Liverpool as a point in your favour – you do recognize they are but 2 points away from winning the title? And Chelsea, barring a total collapse, will be playing in CL next year? And Arsenal under the steady hands of Raul are where? 12th and sinking faster than a lead weight in water.

    Trying to find what your point actually is?

  9. Guns of Hackney

    Tierney. Injured a lot.
    Saliba. Hasn’t kicked a ball yet.
    Pepe. £72m stinker.
    Martinelli. Alleged blow fiend.

    Yeah, Raul is proving himself to be a real slick operator.

    Let’s see what happens in the close season and next. Then we can either laud the club or burn it down.

  10. Ernest Reed

    Tierney – barely played, injured pretty much all season. Martinelli- now injured long term. Saliba – played 0 minutes. Pepe – hot and cold and still struggling to find a consistent place on the squad.

    Sounds like great business to me Freddie, I’d kill for that summer too – on paper only.

  11. Freddie Ljungberg

    Ernest

    If you’re listening to anything GOH says I can’t help you mate.

    Saliba and Martinelli was never bought as short term solutions, they both have world class potential though.
    Martinelli only does coke in GoH twisted mind btw.

    Tierney has been unlucky with injuries sure but that doesn’t mean he always will.

    Pepe has done well for a first season in a turbulent team. Next will be better.

  12. The Backpass

    Ernest

    “Wasi, there is little coherence in what you are writing as your criticism of Pedro. You point to Liverpool as a point in your favour – you do recognize they are but 2 points away from winning the title? And Chelsea, barring a total collapse, will be playing in CL next year? And Arsenal under the steady hands of Raul are where? 12th and sinking faster than a lead weight in water.Trying to find what your point actually is?”

    Its about the agent fees Pedro claimed was paid out despite Kia and now FA’s statement.

    Try to keep up.

  13. Ernest Reed

    You really going to persist with this joke, Freddie? What part of the overall return on investment of those four players screams out as a success? It doesn’t!

  14. Guns of Hackney

    FL

    Perhaps Ernest has made his own mind up. Look, we all want Arsenal to do well. Yes!

    But, Raul is a chancer and so far, jury is out.

    Also, Martinelli has been mentioned as a fiend.

  15. Guns of Hackney

    A better window?

    I’d say the one where we got that fat Brazilian, Santos. Or maybe the one with the Japanese lad.

    Great windows. Makes Everest look like a back alley outfit.

  16. Ernest Reed

    Backpass, who gives a shit about the fees paid out when the return on those fees are captured back by (a) Winning the EPL Title and a CL spot, which gets you more money than the fees paid out, – in Liverpools case, and (b) The CL money is greater than the fees you paid out – in Chelsea’s case

    Im keeping up, just seeing the bigger picture which appears to have escaped you. Who gives a shit about the fees paid when the monies generated by being very good return your investment many times over!

  17. Freddie Ljungberg

    Ernes
    Ok, so you think they were just bought for 1 season then. We bought one of the most talented CBs in the world for 26m to loan him back and then he disappears from existence?

    Martinelli is obviusly finished too at the ripe old age of 19. Off with his head, he’s injured for a couple of months anyway, what’s the point.

    Ridiculous thinking, the clean up job of the squad was always going to be at least a 3 year project even if we get everything right.

    Would be nice to have a magic wand and get rid of Mikhi, Ozil and the rest on high wages holding us back and get nice transfer fees for them too so we can afford ready made replacements, but in the real world you have to pay for your past mistakes and that’s what we have been doing for the last 2 years.

  18. Ernest Reed

    I have stated before and will do so again, Arteta will leave when he realizes that he’s being played for a dupe by those who represent upper management. Arteta loves the club, a club that he played for at one time. When it truly dawns on him that that club is not this club and a better opportunity comes calling, who could begrudge him?

    Point of note, as Pedro has and is pointing out, this incarnation of Arsenal has no coherent plan at the moment. If thats not obvious by what all of us are witnessing, then maybe the meds truly have kicked in. Unless Raul and Edu have something magical hidden up their arses, this looks every bit as bad as perceived.

  19. The Backpass

    Ernest

    “Backpass, who gives a shit about the fees paid out when the return on those fees are captured back by (a) Winning the EPL Title and a CL spot, which gets you more money than the fees paid out, – in Liverpools case, and (b) The CL money is greater than the fees you paid out – in Chelsea’s case”

    The people who are talking about it give a shit, including Pedro btw who quoted Terraloon in today’s post.

    Nobody is talking about the best squad, who is winning the league or others, simply agent fees as evident by Pedro’s post today.

    Like i said, Keep up.

  20. Ernest Reed

    “Would be nice to have a magic wand and get rid of Mikhi, Ozil and the rest on high wages holding us back and get nice transfer fees “

    If only Freddie – would go an awful long way to righting the ship.

  21. Emiratesstroller

    Pedro

    This is the first post published recently where I am 100% in agreement regarding the lack of plan.

    Arsenal are a club in transition with a good coach who needs to be given time
    to develop his team.

    I don’t have an issue with our recruitment and promotion of young players, which are in most cases low cost, relatively low wage and low risk players.

    However, Arsenal’s transfer policy when buying mature high cost and wage
    players has been very poor for a long time. The club has in my view a very poor
    track record.

    The problem started with Ozil who was recruited by the club when we failed to
    buy Suarez. Suarez turned out to be a match winner at Barcelona whereas Ozil
    became a Real Madrid reject at Arsenal.

    Since then we have bought a number of expensive players [£30 million +] or
    high wage players [£70K+] who have been poor value for money. Many turned out to be not only poor footballers, but also flawed characters as well.

    Buying a player on computer or based on an agent relationship is the wrong way of recruiting players.

    Many years ago I was told by Ken Friar that Liverpool’s success in 1970/80s was based on in depth scouting of players AND character assessment. That
    was a policy that Arsenal subsequently followed.

    It would seem that is no longer the case at Arsenal and may explain why so many recruits have been poor outcomes.

  22. Ernest Reed

    Again Backpass, the fees are recouped through performance of the team. They bank on it! Im keeping up, just seeing a bigger picture than the one-dimensional view you are using. Fees have always been part of the game, its part of the cost of doing business.

  23. Ishola70

    Luiz was a shit signing regardless of agent fees.

    If Arsenal signed a player like Timo Werner fans wouldn’t care what the agent pocketed in the deal. Would just be happy to have that kind of player in the team.

  24. Wasi

    ‘But, Raul is a chancer and so far, jury is out.’

    This comment. TOP.
    The jury is still out but he is already a cancer. Pedro’s brainwashing is definitely working.

    Ernest

    ‘Wasi, there is little coherence in what you are writing as your criticism of Pedro. You point to Liverpool as a point in your favour – you do recognize they are but 2 points away from winning the title? And Chelsea, barring a total collapse, will be playing in CL next year? ‘

    Maybe you haven’t read our previous interactions. Its about Pedro claiming that we have paid mega millions to agents when in reality we have not.
    (And there’s proof now , too)
    What are you trying to say. If you pay Liverpool and Chelsea esque fees to agents ,its a stairway to CL and PL trophy. Then say that to Pedro who has been constantly trying to push forward the agenda that Raul had been lining his friends’s pockets like crazy.

    GOH

    ‘Tierney. Injured a lot.
    Saliba. Hasn’t kicked a ball yet.
    Pepe. £72m stinker.
    Martinelli. Alleged blow fiend.’

    BTW

    The 72 mil stinker has been our best player according to whoscored. ( in terms of stats)

    Gabi – 2nd highest goalscorer in the squad . Labelled by Klopp as a generational talent. But yes in your fantasy world he does coke and is a fiend. Wow.

    Saliba has been kicking the ball and attackers for nearly 18 months now. Widely accepted one of the best teenager CB in the world.

    KT – Has been injured a lot this season but whenever he has been available he has put in very good performances.

  25. GillespieRoadNoMore

    Josh K needs to set the agenda, clear vision and a coherent strategy as to how to achieve it. This is The Arsenal we are talking about, a club with class and history.

    It grieves me to see how we have been caught and left behind by CFC & MCFC, club’s flying high on a big dose of ruthless ambition and financial doping.

    I remember MUFC being relegated in the early 1970’s within a very short time of riding high in Europe.

    If decisive action from the owners isn’t taken soon the parasites infesting our club could consign us to being relegation contenders within 3 years.

  26. Wasi

    Ishola

    ‘ If Arsenal signed a player like Timo Werner fans wouldn’t care what the agent pocketed in the deal. Would just be happy to have that kind of player in the team.’

    Well we did. We signed Pepe and according to some Journos paid extra fees to third party ( Mendes) tho not as much as the reported 12 mil that is being paid for Werner and some on here have been constantly slating and criticizing the player and the fees.
    These are the same people who moaned and cried when Arsene would miss out on a certain players for not paying a few extra million to the player or the agents to get the deal over the line.

  27. Cmansf

    I understand the optics at the moment and the squad is a mess but I dont think we should really assess the damage until after the window is complete.

    This season is a write off, it was at the point Arteta inherited the squad. Im not calling him our saviour but to ask him to get a CL run was fantasy. Fans like dream and they have been dashed again but in todays internet age we review players, managers and boards after every single game.

    I agree the board does seem disjointed and the recent contracts are underwhelming but no one really knows the short term constraints we and other clubs are under or the wages offered here.

    I strongly believe Raul should be given another summer window before passing judgement. Last Summer was our best window in a very long time with Saliba, Tierney, Martinelli and Pepe. They may not all work out but they were signings based on youth and talent. Pepe might not be setting the world on fire but the vast majority of fans wanted him over Zaha for many reasons. I think one more proper window and lets see what the squad looks like.

  28. Wasi

    Camnsf

    ‘I strongly believe Raul should be given another summer window before passing judgement. Last Summer was our best window in a very long time with Saliba, Tierney, Martinelli and Pepe. They may not all work out but they were signings based on youth and talent. Pepe might not be setting the world on fire but the vast majority of fans wanted him over Zaha for many reasons. I think one more proper window and lets see what the squad looks like.’

    We definitely had one of our best windows last summer . But many here only focus on the Luiz deal as it gives them reasons enough to criticize Raul because they’ve been brainwashed by their master Pedro to do so.

  29. andy1886

    Sure is a shit show.

    As we’re all agreed that this is such a terrible squad you have to ask the question how Emery managed to get them to fifth, a point off third last season? Maybe he was a genius?

    Taking the piss a bit I know but be honest for once, who did we lose in the summer that turns that fifth place team into a team that languishes in tenth or eleventh? And what about the £140m we spent, are they all terrible too?

    Let’s not delude ourselves, either they are crap and UE overachieved or they are not and we’re underachieving now. Or you can just go lalalalalala and stick to your agendas.

  30. Ishola70

    The article that Pedro quoted in his tweet line from The Independent would indicate that more than enough players are the problem.

    Apparently Arteta is pissed off with enough of them already.

    So maybe the lambasting of Emery was overdone.

  31. Ishola70

    Freddie Ljungberg also didn’t hide his displeasure at some of the players during his short caretaker stint.

    There is a pattern developing here.

  32. Nelson

    Edu is supposed to set up the strategy and a plan for the club. It seems that he is hiding behind Raul. He should explain his vision to the fans if he ever has one.

    Arsenal fans are impatient. But we should still give Arteta some times to show us what he can do. Raul has already drained our budget. The players have already given up 12.5% of their salary. Arteta may have to do with whoever is available now.

  33. Ernest Reed

    “Arsenal fans are impatient.”

    Arsenal fans are spoiled, Nelson. Which of course lends itself to impatience as you correctly point out.

  34. Ishola70

    Team was on the slide at the end of Wenger’s tenure. On a downward spiral.

    New manager comes in and gets some sort of tune out of them for a period but team revert back to downward spiral after new manager bounce has faded.

    New manager now in Arteta now takes over a team that has been in downward trajectory for several years bar that new manager bounce period. Tough for him.

    Seems plausible to me.

  35. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    Said before years ago…
    The club is dead from the top down…
    Like a faded rich celebrity still thinking he can shop at Fortum an mason every week by getting a black cab to wait out side whilst they shop…

    Dreams dead.

    Only option is to sell all that is worthless and can nick a few quid for..

    This season has gone only joy could be fa cup …

    But that card has been played many times in recent years…

  36. Daniel Altos

    Daniel Altos,Nobody blamed the fitness guy for Holding. Everybody blamed Marcus Rashford for an unnecessary shove.Personally I would like referees come down much harder on snide fouls. Fouls that serve no purpose except hurting the opponent.
    The excuse “he did not mean it” is meaningless, because of course he did not mean to seriously injured him, but that is the unintended consequence of reckless and feckless play. I am sure that a lot of drink drivers did not mean to kill their victim, yet they did.In rugby, competing for a ball when both players are in the air is permissible, however interfering with somebody who is in the air results at a minimum in a penalty and quite often in a yellow card.
    The first objective of a referee should always be to protect the physical integrity of the players. Unnecessary petty fouls because they take away the ability of a player to reception himself can lead to serious twist injuries, shoulder popping up, etc.
    Arsenal seems to often lose players to those types of fouls: Arnautovic on Debuchy, Rashford on Holding, Maupay on Leno, etc.

    Valentin this is rubbish,Pedro is on record blaming the fitness physios,I might be wrong but you were also on that same bandwagon…nobody here rejoin ces on arsenal being at a shit state but this shifting of the goalsposts when it suits is pathetic.We are all making conspiracy theories about someone like Mari and agents,then why aren’t we talking about the fact that Mari was at City and Arteta was at City too and he likes him?The last time I checked,managers being linked with their former players was a crime on Legrove.

  37. Marc

    Ernest

    “Pepe – hot and cold and still struggling to find a consistent place on the squad.”

    Pires PL stats first season in a much better / more balanced settle Arsenal team:

    33 appearances
    4 goals
    7 assists

    Pepe PL stats this season – we all know what’s gone on:

    25 appearances
    5 goals
    6 assists

    Was Pires a failure? Why are so many fans determined to write off last summers signings no matter what?

  38. into the red

    I like your vision of Dortmund 2.0. Nothing would make me happier. But surely you can see that with the current structure – absentee owner, board irrelevant and sidelined, a clique of highly paid execs who are occupying a former North London football club – it has no chance of happening. Your faith in Arteta is touching, based on no evidence so far, but it is hard to see him being able to implement any plans, even if he happens to have one, which we don’t know. He is like a junior employee, maybe promising, but beholden to his employers and subject to their whims and politics. Never mind Dortmund 2.0, we have Arsenal 2.0, and I would prefer to retain some of the long lost Arsenal 1.0.

  39. Marc

    I seem to remember Emery being blamed for Holdings injury for overplaying him!

    Maybe I’m transferring that from the fitness guys who should’ve stopped him from playing.

  40. Ernest Reed

    Pepe is Pepe, Marc. I compare him to no one other than himself. Will he find his way at Arsenal, only he knows at this point.

  41. Marc

    A question to those questioning the signings from last summer.

    How do they compare to the signings from the summer before where Mislintat was in charge of recruitment?

  42. Marc

    Ernest

    You’ve completely missed my point. There are always and will always be fans to write players off instantly if they don’t set the world on fire from their first appearance.

    I prefer to give them a season to settle and then judge but write now Pepe is doing better than OK having played under 2 full time managers and in a team that has some serious issues.

    I can look at the player and performances without having to find a way to criticise Sanllehi. As has been said by a few on here (to the point it’s a bit of a running joke) any player signed that’s successful will be down to Mislintat or Arteta, any player who is a failure will be down to Emery or Sanllehi.

  43. Ishola70

    I think any questions regarding signings of the past is irrelevant until we see this team climb the table and start winning on a regular basis.

    Until then it’s just hearsay in what is termed good transfer windows.

    We understand that the rebuild is longer term and one good window won’t fix all but the team has actually regressed after this good transfer window in terms of results and league placing which you wouldn’t expect if it was so good.

  44. Ernest Reed

    “How do they compare to the signings from the summer before where Mislintat was in charge of recruitment?”

    Depends on what a given windows objectives were, Marc.

    Was the window used to enhance the squad with depth? Was it used to fill a required need? Was it used as part of an overhaul? Or was it used for selfish purposes to fill personal needs?

    You can only truly judge the success of a transfer window based on whether it fulfilled the clubs true needs, not wants or desires.

  45. Daniel Altos

    I read this post regarding our plan and I remembered my first job a couple of years ago when I graduated University,I was lucky that my dad hooked me up to one of his pals who had an events planning and entertainment company and he gave me a decent job..The guy was a self made millionaire and often he said “sometimes the best plan is not sticking to a plan and doing things as they come”…He paid no attention to advice I was employed to give him and hired mates with no qualifications for the job.All the time he was confident that we had the market on lock and nothing was there to worry about despite advice to the contrary.The story is long so I will make it short,5 years later the company closed shop,plenty of debts and losses and the guy is fighting numerous fraud cases(most not of his own making but his mates)….Now compared to our current situation we seem to be doing things ‘off the cuff’ with no clear direction whatsoever.In an attempt to save myself from heartache and find some excitement I have been watching alot of football in different leagues,looking at different teams and I am left wondering why we can’t behave like the said teams.There are many exciting projects like Leipzig, leverkusen,sociedad,Dortmund,getafe,Atalanta,Gladbach,Lille,rennes,reims,Braga,marseille,brentford,leeds,Leicester,wolvesand even Ronaldo’s Valladolid.

    Now,those clubs might have different styles of play, different types of managers but one thing is clear they all have a clear and well thought out plan that you can see is heading somewhere.What we are doing will only lead to one thing and that is midtable eternity or even relegation(mind you,our players will get eaten alive in the championship)unless we change.

  46. Ernest Reed

    “Pepe is doing better than OK having played under 2 full time managers and in a team that has some serious issues.”

    Just Ok Marc, or 72m ok? That number defines expectations. When is ok not ok, when you spend 72m to get just ok.

    Im not missing any point, the point is obvious, have you gotten value for expenditure?

  47. Ishola70

    Of course if that transfer window was so good there is only one individual to blame for Arsenal’s current position.

    Step forward Mr Unai Emery.

    Or it could be the case that any good transfer window is still jeopardised by those players that have been in place before that are seen as not good enough. They offset any good transfer windows.

    I think it has been said before that until Arsenal get rid of a few select players that have been seen as letting the team down for too long now then this team will not truly be able to move forward regardless of any perceived good transfer window.

  48. GunnerDNA

    There’s definitely problems with the execs at the Club but the problems when the players cross the white line are the reasons the other are highlighted to cover the fact that Mikle is clueless. Arteta needs to show some level of competency in what he’s paid to, he obviously thinks he’s paid to do podcast. At the moment Arsenal is playing the worse football in the league and that takes some doing. When you have a manger who doesn’t know his best starting 11 and have no idea how to make changes to his team if plan A is ineffective its a matter of time before the players stop listening to him.

  49. Valentin

    Marc,

    No the injury was about Ramsey, which you categorically said was not due to overplaying him. Then Emery fessed that up. That made you look ridiculous by still defending a point on behalf of Emery whilst he had already conceded it.

  50. Marc

    Ernest

    He’s doing more than enough to be given next season before people start writing off a player.

    You don’t seem to be willing to accept that.

  51. Ernest Reed

    “When you have a manger who doesn’t know his best starting 11 ”

    Maybe thats because the club doesn’t have a “best” starting 11, Gunner?

  52. Dissenter

    Ernest Reed
    You’re a study of irony
    One moment you’re stating that Arsenal fans are impatient and spoiled,
    Next you’re lambasting Pepe for not coming good fast enough.

    He came to us within a preseason and ha splayed under three managers who don’t seem to know what they want from him based on the disjointed performances.

    It does seem that you’re the epitome of that impatient and spoiled gooner after all.

  53. Marc

    Ernest

    That’s a stupid statement. A “best starting 11” doesn’t have to be very good just better than the other options. Arteta’s selections do not inspire many with any confidence, the less said about his subs the better.

  54. Ernest Reed

    Im willing to give Pepe all the time in the world to be a regular 1st team player, provided of course Pepe wants that too. You are making player mediocrity a fashionable thing.

  55. Freddie Ljungberg

    Ernest

    Since we didn’t buy Pepe for just 1 season where he’s adapting it’s a bit early to judge if he is value for money or not. Same with the other buys from last summer, especially Saliba and Martinelli.
    Same with Guendouzi from the summer before.

    Ishola

    It was a good window talent wise, it didn’t improve us much immediately for obvious reasons though, (injuries, youth, loan) but it’s a good base to build on.

    Also, yes, the shitness of our senior players negates minor improvements. Sprinkle ice cream on a bowl of shit and see how that tastes. Same here.

    To improve from the off we need to spend big on several ready made players but we don’t have the budget for that yet, too many holes to fill still.

  56. Ernest Reed

    I guess then Marc, that Arteta has yet to find HIS starting 11. When you have indifferent players, crappy players, and some I wanna be here players, it makes finding a starting 11 somewhat difficult.

    You should stop Marc, you spend far too much time writing things for the sake of writing things, you always have.

  57. Marc

    Valentin

    “No the injury was about Ramsey, which you categorically said was not due to overplaying him. ”

    Firstly please link to where I “categorically” stated anything about Ramsey and injuries other than Ramsey spends a third of every season injured and Ryan Shawcross’s tackle was borderline criminal.

    Secondly how can you complain about us not keeping a player who is constantly getting injured, who needs to be rested so often on what would’ve been a ridiculously high contract?

  58. Daniel Altos

    Marc,No the injury was about Ramsey, which you categorically said was not due to overplaying him. Then Emery fessed that up. That made you look ridiculous by still defending a point on behalf of Emery whilst he had already conceded it.

    No it was about holding,or maybe azed needs to do his thing. Infact the common theme here was that the training sessions were intense hence our players dropping like flies.What is so different now?Covid?I don’t see players from the other 19 teams dropping like flies,ffs just look at how Mari got inured.Or maybe we just have weak players?

  59. Dissenter

    Last summer window was the best one in a long time, probably the last decade.
    We even managed to move out Iwobi for good money.

  60. Ernest Reed

    Freddie, we are going nowhere as Arsenal supporters, so time is a luxury we do have. Im willing to give some players the same time i. Giving Arteta to find what works for them and the betterment of the club. Some players i will never give that courtesy and you know those that i speak of. Pepe may come good and then again he may not, thats on him – earn your play.

  61. Versus

    It’s so weird. Lately reading pedros posts. It reads like he’s having a debate with himself!
    It’s as if his more recent WOB side is arguing with his old skool AKB side.

  62. Marc

    Daniel

    Even Xhaka who rarely gets injured has managed to get hurt. It could just be bad luck but we do seem to get more than our fair share on the injury front.

  63. Marc

    ” Some players i will never give that courtesy and you know those that i speak of. ”

    Why don’t all players deserve the same opportunity?

  64. Wiscogunner

    “Move on the senior players that are letting us down. A clean sweep. That’s Auba, Lacazette, Mustafi, Kola, Luiz and the loan players.“

    In theory sure, but let’s be practical here. Arsenal don’t know how to sell their players. We know how to hold on to them until they cost the equivalent of fuck all and then let them leave for free.

  65. Nelson

    Marc

    Is Pires also a record signing at that time?

    Why Pepe is benched by 3 managers multiple times? A normal fan should question this.

  66. Marc

    Ernest

    You seem to think your opinion is valued a hell of a lot higher than it is. I’m happy to debate with 99% on here if you want to play the prick – water off a ducks back to me.

  67. Ernest Reed

    Because some are lazy and selfish SOB’s Marc. How many opportunities would you want to give to someone like Ozil?

  68. Digz

    Superb post Pedro, I really enjoyed it

    Just FYI, I watch Spanish football Raul caused so many issues at Barca, people expected him to go to a second division club but bizarrely he ended up at Arsenal.

    My only disagreement with you is on Arteta, why do you think he’s a good coach? His team selections are no less than terrible and his in game management is non existent and he’s copying no one other than Unai Emery, who already failed.

    We need new people at director level and also sadly a better coach

  69. RGG

    Arteta wants Luiz next season, that’s why he got his extension….
    He wants Xhaka to stay too……

    What “try’n to be ckever’ lineup is he going to start with 2nite then?

    If he dont get a reaction to Brighton with a very good performance that should mean we win then it’ll be more evidence he ain’t up to this…..

  70. Tony

    I am confused. Cedric’s agent is Kia (as he is to luiz n Mari) Saints were willing to let CS go for free on 30th June. So why did we offer him a 4 yr contract paying a fee to Saints in the process when we could’ve gotten him for nothing in a weeks time?

  71. Marc

    Ernest

    “How many opportunities would you want to give to someone like Ozil?”

    The question is how many more? He’s had his opportunities and been here for coming up 7 years.

    Personally I think that it’s unfair to use someone who’s been with the club for almost 7 years as a yardstick as to why a player who’s Arsenal career is closer to 7 months is “hot and cold and still struggling to find a consistent place on the squad.”

  72. Ernest Reed

    “You seem to think your opinion is valued a hell of a lot higher than it is. ”

    If someone finds some value in my opinion then that is a nice thing to see. If they do not then so be it, Marc. I respect everyone’s opinion on here, whether i agree with it or not, it is everyone’s right to have an opinion. Where i draw a line is when someone becomes excessive and pointless.

  73. Ernest Reed

    “hot and cold and still struggling to find a consistent place on the squad.”

    I believe this to be a valid and true assessment of Pepe this season.

  74. Valentin

    Marc,

    The difference between players getting impact injuries and getting hamstring and other muscular injuries should be obvious.

    Sprained ankles and knees is different, because sometimes they are due to a tired player over compensating. Lunging and twisting his knee after losing the ball due to a miscontrol.
    Hence such injuries are more common at the end of preseason when players are put through intense conditioning or toward the end of the season when players are tired.

  75. Ernest Reed

    And Marc, three managers cannot be wrong on Pepe. Clearly his performances this season have not warranted 1st team regular play. My assessment stands as the facts do not lie.

  76. Marc

    Ernest

    “I believe this to be a valid and true assessment of Pepe this season.”

    Outside of maybe Leno and Auba (it’s all open to debate) that can be said of every player at Arsenal this season. It’s the guy’s first season, personally I like to take the view of “he’s shown some ability and what he can be capable of” let’s hope he pushes on next season.

  77. Batistuta

    Big lol reading all those pandemic excuses for out very poor football like 19 other teams in the league didn’t have a break too and all resumed training at the same time we did. Been fun reading the total 360 on here regarding expectations too by the way. Suddenly no one is interested in “style of play” anymore because they have to defend whatever it is they feel they have to.

    If after 10 games we can’t see something of a plan for what a new manager is trying to do with his new team, then maybe serious questions need to start being asked

  78. Ernest Reed

    “I don’t think you like the point I’ve made and you’ve contradicted yourself as pointed out by Dissenter.”

    Cause Dissenter agrees with your point, Marc? My point remains my point, you judge a window on NEEDS, not wants. What was it that we needed last summer, more than anything else? Pepe? FFS!

    There is no point to what you said because there is no point to it.

  79. Dissenter

    ‘ And Marc, three managers cannot be wrong on Pepe’
    Emery of 2019-202 season was clueless- he lost his way completely and deserved his sack.
    Freddie shouldn’t have lasted more than two games as head coach
    Arteta is still learning his trade, makes rookie mistakes ll the time.

    More like three blind managers couldn’t find their way back home.

  80. Marc

    Ernest

    “And Marc, three managers cannot be wrong on Pepe. Clearly his performances this season have not warranted 1st team regular play. ”

    He’s made 25 PL appearances out of a possible 30, for a guy settling into a new league I don’t think that’s to bad. As I’ve already said the matches he’s been left out of also are spread out so it’s not as if he’s been benched / dropped for a block of the season.

  81. andy1886

    Tony, I think we had to sign Cedric – to play the rest of this season he had to be signed by end of June 23rd. If we signed him after his Saints deal expired on June 30th we couldn’t then re-register him to play this season. The loan deal would have expired together with his Saints contract on the 30th and we could not extend the loan either past that date. Make sense?

  82. Marc

    Ernest

    It was agreed by the management team prior to last summer that we needed a winger. So FFS yes Pepe was a player it was deemed we needed. If you’d have preferred a different winger fine but that’s a different conversation.

  83. Ernest Reed

    Is there a timeline on Cedric playing this season, Andy? I cant find any real update on his status?

  84. Valentin

    Tony,

    The wording of the premiership extension are very specific. Club were authorised to either extend a player they already own until the new end of the season (could be longer) or to extend the loan until the new end of the season. We could not buy a player and then play him.

    So in order to be able to play Cedric between now and the end of the season we needed to extend his loan from Southampton. However Cedric contract with Southampton ended before, so Southampton had to first extend his contract until the new end of the season and then agree to extend his loan.
    Arsenal had to give him and Southampton an incentive to sign that extension. So Arsenal had to pay a fee to Southampton which is just a very high loan fee for 6 weeks. And the player who clearly did not expected that much, Arsenal gave a 4 years contract.
    In short we got done by both sides Southampton and the player/agent.

  85. Ishola70

    Maybe some are not too hot on Pepe just for the fact that they feel he was an unneccesary signing in terms of what the team needed. Splurging so much on a winger forward when the midfield is/was criticised so much.

    Of course if he was pulling up trees every match no-one would care that Arsenal decided to spend so much on an attacker when the midfield has looked so inadequate.

    It would be unfair on him but there can be this idea that he was an extravagant signing in terms of what was needed to be addressed before going big on a winger.

  86. Dissenter

    Valentin has been.making the point about the proper way to use Pepe. There’s a reason he dis so well at Lille.
    It’s not uncommon for new player to struggle in England; Fabhino and Fred are good examples. Fabhino couldn’t make the starting eleven at Liverpool and Fred looked like a colossal failure at United.
    Pepe will come good.

  87. Dissenter

    Valentin
    Couldn’t we have just let his contract with Southampton expire on June 30th and then signed him on a Bosman contract?
    The player is not obligated to accept an extension of his contract with Southampton. Ryan Fraser declined to extend his contract with Bournemouth for 3 months and will be a free agent on July 1st. [not saying we sign him, just an example]
    We could have signed Soares as a free agent on July 1st. I don’t know if that would have been cheaper tbh.

  88. andy1886

    Ernest – nothing specific, only the comment made yesterday following his signing:

    “Cedric is also going to be an important player. He has been unlucky with the injuries but he is close to being ready and gives us more strength in the right-back position.”

    So “close to being ready”.

  89. Ishola70

    And 72m was a ridiculous price for him of course.

    And that’s not me writing him off Pepe . Like others I have seen enough promising moments from him to hope we see him as absolutely key in the coming seasons.

    But 72m for a player with one good season in France who looks a bit raw around the edges was a ludicrous price to pay for him.

    That was Arsenal showing off wanting to show that they are still a “big” club which was alluded to in the Independent article which was mentioned earlier on here.

    Was it the right decision to sign him over other positions last summer? Very debatable.

  90. Ishola70

    I think the decision to sign Pepe for 72m over other needs in the side was very Wengerish.

    We’ll score more goals than you. Arsenal! Arsenal!

    We don’t care how many we concede.

    We will score more goals than you!

  91. Valentin

    Dissenter,

    We could have bought Cedric on a Bosman, but then he would not have been eligible to play any games until the new end of the season.
    Players cannot be re-registered from loan to permanent transfer to the premiership outside of agreed transfer window.

  92. salparadisenyc

    If Raul took that £72m Pepe cash and put it into the defense in last window, we could of had a generational back four for the foreseeable. So much quality out there at moment.

    With PEA and Laca in side we’ll find net, object of that window for me was minimizing goals let in. But that requires a plan.

  93. Valentin

    Ishola,

    Pepe was a ridiculous deal. Even we ignore the ludicrous valuation, We had glaring deficiencies in the middle of the midfield and did not even pretend to remediate them.

    Dissenter and I suggested at the time that getting Ismael Bennacer on the cheap (we had first option on him) and sell Torreira to Roma would have been a more effective move. The extra money could then be spent on getting a second DM that would be understudy.

    Same about the CB, even if Koscielny had stayed we still needed another body able to play on the left side. Instead of treating Upamecano as after thought, he should have been one of our first call. I would rather have spend €100 millions on him than €80 millions on Pepe.

  94. Dissenter

    Valentin
    ‘ We could have bought Cedric on a Bosman, but then he would not have been eligible to play any games until the new end of the season.
    Players cannot be re-registered from loan to permane’

    Got that, that makes sense. It’s about having him available for the next 2 months as well.

  95. The Backpass

    “I think the decision to sign Pepe for 72m over other needs in the side was very Wengerish.”

    The money was too much, but we definitely needed a winger, jeez iwobi and Mhki were stinking off the place.

  96. Dissenter

    Ishola and Valentin
    Hindsight is always 20/20 like they say.
    We didn’t have a dribbling winger for years so the need for one was immense last summer window.
    We also needed central midfielders and an AMF too but don’t forget that some were still bought into some now discredited myths;
    -Guendouzi being a generational talent
    – Torriera was supposed to be a very good player too.
    -Willock looked like he would have a breakthrough season.
    It’s possible that they decided to take a chance and fix the winger problem first.

    Pepe cost too much but that’s because we were so desperate to fill a glaring hole in our squad. Funny enough we now have too many wingers.

    Me… I wanted us to buy Ryan Fraser, bring Bennacer back to Arsenal and get a proper defender. That’s would have been the best use of the 72 million but I’ll give Raul/Edu a pass on last summer.

  97. Champagne Charlie

    “Me… I wanted us to buy Ryan Fraser, bring Bennacer back to Arsenal and get a proper defender.“

    Another reason you’re here commenting and not in the Arsenal meetings.

  98. Marc

    Dissenter

    We also took Ceballos on loan – a player who was very highly rated. Wasn’t he player of the Tournament at the U21 World Cup or something the year before?

    We are in a longer term rebuild than many would have last season (they seem to be changing their minds!) and we took a gamble on CM that we had enough that didn’t work out.

    It’s crappy but I don’t think any one disputes that CM should and will be our focus this summer.

  99. Ishola70

    Dissenter

    “We didn’t have a dribbling winger for years so the need for one was immense last summer window.”

    What was more important?

    A dribbling winger or a commanding midfielder and CB?

    This is the test to see if you have the Wengertis in your veins. he! he! he!

  100. The Backpass

    “Instead of treating Upamecano as after thought, he should have been one of our first call. I would rather have spend €100 millions on him than €80 millions on Pepe.”

    I like the guy, but for that amount, he also makes mustafi like mistakes and if you said he could learn from him, then so does Pepe.

    Will he be better than Pepe? maybe, but he will definitely have his Mustafi moment.

    I seem to recall you also said, which should have gotten NDombele over Pepe, that again would have been a massive failure. Ndombele can’t seem to be bothered to play football, his fitness is poor, very Lazy.. Aulas after the match against Guingamp called him Lazy( so its not a tottenham thing).

    Bennnacer would just be another torreira, good for Italian serie A but not cut out for the prem.

    Partey..now that is one we should have gotten last summer instead of Pepe( not that we didn’t need a winger)

  101. Nelson

    Torreira played so well in his national team. He is very quick with the first few steps. He is a good tackler. I think that it is a failure of our coaches not to integrate him in the team properly. Now he wants to leave the EPL.

  102. Ishola70

    I don’t mind Torreira too much because he shows some good attributes but overall don’t like tiny tots in central midfield.

    That Bennacer is 3 foot in high heels isn’t he?

    Little 10s fine of course. Like that Martinez at Inter. Out of bounds to sign of course.

  103. Terraloon

    Dissenter/ Valentin

    As you will possibly recall I pointed out that as Soares was on loan the possibility existed that he could be signed on a permanent deal prior to 30 June even though his contract with Southampton was due to end on 30June. L

    Again as you will possibly remember I was “ told” that they only way that Arsenal would be signing him would be on a Bosman. Which I stated was incorrect . Others continued to argue against my observation.

    As Valentin correctly points out there would had to have been something in it for Southampton and that in all likelihood would be a fee.

    Likewise there would have to have been something extra in it for the player and that almost certainly is the 4 year deal.

    Now here for me is the real interesting one.

    If Soares is anywhere near the squad tonight be it as a starter or on the bench that would be almost confirmation that money changed hands

    The reason I say that is quite simply there is a little rule tucked away in the PL rule book that says

    “ If during the period of a Temporary Transfer the Player’s registration is transferred permanently from the Transferor Club to the Transferee Club, the two Clubs may agree in writing (with such agreement copied to the League) that the Player shall not play against the Transferor Club for the remainder of the Season;

    In effect Saints held the whip hand as far as they were concerned his contract was running down and was due to end in 7 days. If he were on loan then he couldn’t play against his owning club but if he moved on a permanent deal then , if both clubs agreed, then yes he could

    Ok I acknowledge that he might not feature because that too could be part of the agreement but as I say if he is available then why would Saints agree to anything that could work against them ? They would just let his contract run out.

    The only conclusion I can come to is ££££ was on the table

  104. Tom

    “Pepe is Pepe, Marc. I compare him to no one other than himself. Will he find his way at Arsenal, only he knows at this point.“

    Ernest
    If you expect long, mazy runs from Pepe leaving three and four players for dead in his wake- the likes you could see from his you tube clips- then it ain’t gonna happen.
    Arsenal need to find a way to get him the ball in the final third when he’s not double and triple teamed as soon as he receives it.
    The Brighton game was a case study. Mustafi made the most passes to Pepe just beyond the half way line with the entire Brighton side behind the ball, and no sooner then he got it under control and turned he had a 6’6” defender in his face with two more within 10 yards of him.
    Compare that to when he was fed the ball from Saka for his curler and you’ll see the difference.
    Tying Saka down long term is paramount to Arteta’s future and will help Pepe tremendously.

    Is Pepe maybe a bit soft and drifts in and out of games too easily? Sure.
    Was Arjen Robben a robust two footed monster running over people?
    Of course not, but for every 50 yard run he made for Chelsea there were a dozen 20 yarders when he only had one defender to beat to trouble the keeper.

  105. Ishola70

    Imagine having Bennacer and Torreira in the same midfield.

    It would be like watching an under 10s side.

    One tiny tot is enough in CM. Rather none.

  106. Ishola70

    Tom

    “The Brighton game was a case study. Mustafi made the most passes to Pepe just beyond the half way line with the entire Brighton side behind the ball, and no sooner then he got it under control and turned he had a 6’6” defender in his face with two more within 10 yards of him.”

    Isolated.

    A fullback that offers an attacking overlap can help matters in this respect. Draws defender/defenders away from Pepe.

    Bellerin was invisible against Brighton in terms of offering attacking support for Pepe.

  107. Marc

    Ishola

    Agree about using the full backs better – it’d also be nice if we could occasionally look to break quicker and get behind the opposition.

  108. Tom

    Ishola
    I think was done purposely by Arteta so not to overcrowd the area.
    Whether it worked is up for debate.

  109. Moray

    Hold on, so we signed Soares on a 4-year contract just so that he would be available for the next two months of a season that we are completely dead and buried in anyway? Am I understanding the logic right?

  110. Freddie Ljungberg

    Our attacking play is still hindered by not having a proper Cam, there’s pretty much nothing in the middle attacking wise from our midfield.

    Let’s see if we buy one in the summer or if we still can’t justify buying a replacement for someone that’s pocketing 350k a week for producing less than is expected of a youth player new to the team.

    I think we’ll buy 2 midfielders this summer, not sure what positions though. Depends on how they view Guen I think.

  111. CG

    PedRo

    “””””What’s the plan, Edu/Raul?””””””

    Don’ t get rumbled. That’s their plan of action.But their day of reckoning is coming.

    I have two African grey’s back home in Sandton – I would rather they formulate a plan than these impostors.

    Raul The Fat Spiv probably arranging his career exit strategy as we speak- probably going freelance as an agent himself.

    Trust me Raul wont be hanging around when there is no more money to spend- that’s not his style.

    As for Edu. A preening and prancing ponce of a man.

    How we ever had him back after his passport fiasco was a disgrace.

    What does he know about the dynamics of English soccer and technical excellence?

    As for Arteta and greatness- you get one chance in this life
    And he blew it – if he wants greatness- it wont be at Arsenal FC.

    To borrow Dissenter excellent analogy/description.

    ‘Luiz will be an Albatross around Arteta’s neck’
    Hopefully it will strangle him shortly.

    An utter utter disgrace what these people have done to this club.

    THEY ALL HAVE TO GO!

  112. Ishola70

    Marc
    “Agree about using the full backs better – it’d also be nice if we could occasionally look to break quicker and get behind the opposition.”

    There was no problem with Saka was there when he was playing LB in this respect. Attacking like a demon from the LB position and it causes the opposition plenty of headaches. There were matches early on for Arteta where Arsenal were attacking almost exclusively from the left wing.

    Apart from his contribution against Chelsea away Bellerin isn’t showing that he is an up and down fullback that can offer good attacking support.

    Should consider selling him really.

    There are enough RBs that can get forward in the game now . Might be a bit dodgy defensively but hardly any fullbacks now are both really good defensively and offensively.

    Marcelo was lauded as one of the best players in the world from fullback even though he was very suspect defensively.

  113. Ishola70

    Tom

    “Whether it worked is up for debate.”

    Is it?

    You just told me Pepe was isolated in the match so if the instruction from Arteta to Bellerin was to stay put at fullback it didn’t work to Pepe’s benefit did it.

    As said on previous post we don’t see enough from Bellerin going forward overall anyway not just the Brighton match.

  114. Tom

    Just for a bit of context for all those wondering whether we got the value for money from Pepe.

    Zaha – goal/assist per 330 minutes of league play.
    Hazard- goal/assist per 190 minutes of league play
    Pepe( the youngest and cheapest of the three)- goal/ assist per 155 minutes of league play.
    His goals to assists ratio is even better, as is his overall goals/ assists contributions across all competitions.

    If you’re going to complain about his value for money than you need to find another winger that changed clubs or was rumored to, who has better numbers.
    Otherwise it’s just your personal opinion.

  115. Sid

    Seems the full backs have been instructed to sit back, i keep saying we should be playing a system with wingbacks, it would solve most of the problems

  116. salparadisenyc

    Tom

    Pepe may turn out to be great value for what club invested, may not.
    Point is, club had more pressing areas to address in that window where that cash could have been better utilized imo.