EXITS WILL BE THE PRIORITY, THEN A KEEPER

by .

Listen, we have to talk.

You’ve all been ‘ooooh, Mesut has to go’, now he ‘might’ be going you are crying into your keyboard sharing 2016 GOALS AND ASSISTS comps?

Grow up.

If Mesut is leaving, it’s because it suits his back account (at last).

Chris Wheatley said there have been talks between DC United and Fenerbache. It seems like the lean is more towards Turkey.

I suspect if he goes this month, Arsenal will still carry a portion of his wedge until Maybe, but any help is better than nothing.

The rumblings I am hearing are that there are three major priorities at the club right now.

SELL PLAYERS

The squad is badly bloated. That hits the bank account, but it also affects the training camp. Big names, dropped for kids, feeling very embarrassed is not how you create a high performance culture.

Our squad needs a dramatic trimming. Losing Mesut would be a HUGE win, hopefully he’ll take the toxic fanboys with him. The next highest priority on the list has to be Sokratis, who is taking the fancy of Genoa. Then we have to pray someone can pick up Mustafi, who can be difficult.

David Luiz will take care of himself within 5 months and the kids seem to like him, but we still have big issues. Xhaka, Mo and Willian need to be shipped as well, but I think that seems less likely.

BACK UP KEEPER

This is an absolute necessity. The most dangerous miss in our squad. The club knows this. We’re about to move Matt Macey to Hibernian, but we’ll still be lumbered with the wholly unsuitable Runarsson.

Expect a loan deal here. It goes without saying, but the goalkeeping coach should be absolutely nowhere near this decision. Leave it with the analysts to pick the options. We need someone a bit older, that’s played at a top flight club in Europe, and ideally in the Premier League. Experience is absolutely key… no chances on the mates of someone at the club. Data driven, with an eye test as the confirmation.

At a basic level, look at keepers with 6 months on their deals: Fabianski, Sergio Romero, Gigi Buffon, Marko Dmitrovic, Tomáš Vaclík, Rui Silva, Begovic, Donnaruma and John bloody Ruddy. Nearly all of those names have extensive top level experience. None of them would crash us if the worst happened to Leno. They’d all be cut price right now.

CREATIVITY

The final priority is creativity, but this will only happen if there’s a really sexy opportunity. It seems fairly clear now that Arsenal has stumbled on a way forward. The obsession with short term fixes needs to end and we need to move forward. The biggest concern for the next 5 months is ESR and his fitness. Arteta went from ‘CANNOT COACH ATTACK’ to ‘THIS IS INTERESTING’ and most of that was because we added a competent #10. If we lose him to a hamstring, we’ll go back to being painfully bland again.

The rebuild now and in the summer needs to be heavily skewed in favour of fast players with the hunger to press for 90 minutes. The shape of the creative midfielder we find has to match that. There’s no use bringing in Eriksen… I’d even say that praying Isco wants to run of his gut seems a risk. I don’t know if Buendia is the answer, but at the very least, he matches the profile of player we should be taking a chance on.

So… an interesting month ahead. The right move is cull the squad before we grow. If we grow, let’s pray that we do it with a future facing mindset.

Right, I’m off to watch William Saliba run the defence over in Nice, a start right away, you love to see it.

See you in the comments. x

507 Responses to “EXITS WILL BE THE PRIORITY, THEN A KEEPER”

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  1. Tom

    Upstate
    Ha ha , Actually I wasn’t trying, was more confused having stumbled on the Legrove comments section without any comments , something I’ve never seen before. Lol.

  2. Tom

    If Saliba today doesn’t have a goal line clearance, and a towering header for the game winner at the other end, then he is a flop and Arteta is proven right for dissing him.

  3. Upstate Gooner

    Willian, Mari, Soares, Runnarsson should’ve never been signed. Xhaka should’ve never been convinced to stay. Luiz and Mustafi should’ve never been offered contract extensions. So there’s a reason why the squad is bloated with bang average or below average players… and this reason has a name… Mikel Arteta.

  4. Tee

    anuary 6, 2021 18:27:55
    Every saliba steps in the match awaits different kind of comments.He makes a spectacular block, Arteta is full of shit.He makes mistakes, he is rusty, it’s expected.Let the young man breath and stop analyzing every step of his like demons. Lol

  5. Tee

    “Willian, Mari, Soares, Runnarsson should’ve never been signed. Xhaka should’ve never been convinced to stay. Luiz and Mustafi should’ve never been offered contract extensions. So there’s a reason why the squad is bloated with bang average or below average players… and this reason has a name… Mikel Arteta.”

    You had to include Mari? Lol

  6. Muppetman

    I’d keep Mo as backup, wouldn’t imagine he is on big wages and doesn’t seem a disruptive person. Rather invest in a better starter for Xhaka.

  7. Tee

    “Wrong priorities
    They should be
    New manager
    New technical director
    New owners”

    Pedro is talking about January transfer priority you are here stating your usual drivel that won’t see the light of the day in this month.

    Pedro is too informed to be wasting his precious time writing about irrelevancies

  8. MidwestGun

    Pedro _
    I believe the autocorrect monster has attacked your post today.

    back = bank

    Maybe = May.

    Not usually pedantic about spelling or grammar but the altered words change the meaning of what you wrote.

  9. Upstate Gooner

    Tee/Karsa
    I brought up Mari in part because of the Saliba situation. Also, we already had Chambers, Holding, Mustafi, Sokratis, and Luiz on the books, in addition to Gabriel that was also bought in the summer. What was the point in buying another CB, especially one that only played in like 3 games for us and didn’t look anything out of extraordinary?

  10. Pierre

    Pedro
    ” hopefully he’ll take the toxic fanboys with him”

    I’m not sure that supporters who want to see good quality creative footballers on the pitch , can be described as toxic .

    By and large , the fans that created the toxic situation surrounding Wenger’s are the same fans who are being so abusive to an Arsenal player who has helped to bring many trophies to the club with his style of football that thankfully seems to have been passed on to Smith Rowe.

    They are called the obsessives for a reason, have a read of their comments on Le Grove over the last few days and it’s easy to see that thay are clearly obsessed with Ozil, as they were Wenger.

    The sad thing is , these very same fans will now turn their toxicity onto another player or probably our present manager.

    A couple of poor results and the obsessives will be back on the Arteta out bandwagon.

  11. Sly

    Arteta went from ‘CANNOT COACH ATTACK’ to ‘THIS IS INTERESTING’ and most of that was because we added a competent #10.

    Pedro lol
    Most likely happenstance
    Arteta is falling up the stairs
    Sincerely hope there’s a generational visionary coach in there
    Evidence is contrary

  12. azed

    Nobody in the club can say Saliba wasn’t ready to face Dundalk.

    Arteta fkd up as regards Saliba.
    Mustafi and Luiz are leaving in the summer and there’s no point in playing them. They stole valuable learning time from Saliba.

  13. Graham

    Tee

    Pedro was informed Gazidis was a visionary and Arteta was a generational coach.

    He doesn’t even know what days some of the matches are played.

  14. MidwestGun

    I’m not sure that supporters who want to see good quality creative footballers on the pitch , can be described as toxic .
    _________
    That’s the issue though isn’t it Pierre.. When was Ozil last good…? We are paying him to be one of the best 10 footballers in the world. Bottom line had Ozil played up to what he had previously been capable of Wenger would still be here.

    And your the only one who calls people obsessive. which is beyond ironic.

  15. Karsa

    Upstate

    What was the point in buying another CB,

    Two players for every position. Mari and Gabriel would be my choices for left sided CB.

  16. Graham62

    “The toxic atmosphere at the club” was created because the obvious wasn’t acted on until it was far too late.

  17. Pierre

    Midwest
    If you read what is said( obviously you didnt) …My point is not whether or not Ozil is/was good my point was about being toxic.

    There are only one toxic group of Arsenal fans and they are dragging the club down and Arteta willl be their next target.

  18. Tee

    “brought up Mari in part because of the Saliba situation. Also, we already had Chambers, Holding, Mustafi, Sokratis, and Luiz on the books, in addition to Gabriel that was also bought in the summer. What was the point in buying another CB, especially one that only played in like 3 games for us and didn’t look anything out of extraordinary?”

    Since it’s about saliba, my question is would saliba have done better than those names you mentioned?

    Did you for comment here before we bought Mari that he would only play three matches before getting injured. The answer is NO…….then why state it as a point as if it’s written in stars that Mari would be injured after three matches?

  19. englandsbest

    Is it just me, or are all of us getting optimistic? Pedro put his finger on the priorities – back-up GK. getting rid of Ozil and his ilk, creativity in midfield – and they are all well within reach. The combinations and possibilities of the squad all at once have become truly exciting.

  20. Pierre

    Midwest
    Entitled fans created the toxic atmosphere, and believe me , those very same entitled fans will turn toxic on our present manager very quickly.

  21. Mr Serge

    Saliba nightmare debut for nice he defo needed to go and play maybe he can iron out his deficit before he comes back
    As for ozil fener are paying 90k a week towards his wages which is better than nothing

  22. Northbanker

    Ozil has largely been a disaster for us. There was a brief moment when he linked superbly with Sanchez to show what we had paid for. But overall the man is work shy and a convenient hypochondriac. He is a disgrace to the badge and the sooner he takes his toxic views elsewhere the better. he should be ashamed of the way he has wasted what was an incredible talent. Ultimately though everything is about attitude with talent playing only a small role in how good a footballer is.

  23. Pierre

    Graham
    ““helped to bring many trophies to the club”Lol!”

    Maybe it was just a coincidence that we went nearly a decade without a trophy but as soon as Ozil arrived, the silverware kept on coming, which all Arsenal fans should be grateful for.

  24. Upstate Gooner

    Tee
    Mari is a 27-year old CB who couldn’t land a single minute of playing time while with Man City. He didn’t look anything special in 3 games that he played last season, just as he doesn’t look anything special now. There was absolutely no reason of bringing him on board, especially since we spent so much on Saliba who was coming back from loan. Saliba/Gabriel was supposed to be our first choice CB partnership. Of course, Arteta F’d it up but it’s a different story. Luiz was offered a contract extension. Chambers and Holding weren’t going anywhere. Again, absolutely no reason in signing another CB to a long term deal, especially one that’s painfully average.

  25. Mark

    Tee
    “Why allow him to run down his contract in the first place. If those in charge of renewing contracts are that competent then he should have been tied down to a long contract long ago and loaned out like nkethia.”

    Arteta wasn’t here when the contract was running down. That’s not an excuse for his actions whilst here. He could have done more IMHO if he wanted to ensure he stays.

    I wasn’t against giving Arteta a chance,. I was hoping he was the Generational coach Pedro sold him as. I just slowly stopped ignoring the basic things he seemed to be getting wrong. That common sense or smarts should enable you to handle well.
    There’s no agenda , just acknowledging that whilst I hope Arteta turns things around I don’t see him as the long term answer to Arsenal’s needs. Let him steady the ship and start the rebuild, but after that I’d prefer we get someone else in. Whether that’s another up and coming or experienced one I can’t say.

    My reasoning is the blindness to talent or maybe the lack of balls to want to really shake things up, take chances and play the youth. I kinda hoped being a young rookie, he may have been a bit of a maverick. Changing shit up during games decisively and quickly. Dropping under performing personnel not continuously playing it.

    I guess I expected more. I didn’t expect the pressing to just stop, and not have him mention it at all. In fact hearing him say ‘ we played how he’d planned..’ and he was happy after some of those performances.
    I guess I just expected more.

    The Disgraceful man management , if there’s a worse way to handle things, you’d be hard pushed to beat some of the decisions made in regards to;
    Player poor treatment.
    Player sales decisions ( Not selling when could of.)
    Team selections ( too defensively set up )
    Players played in wrong positions
    Continues to put all eggs in wrong baskets.
    Etc etc
    He doesn’t have the fear factor for me, bit of a pussy. Not that it’s necessary, but his I will destroy them… remarks , gives me the impression he’s trying to act tough.

    I guess I just want more.

  26. Pierre

    Northbanker
    “Ozil has largely been a disaster for us.”

    Not at all , even last season, under Arteta before lockdown , Ozil started every league game and the team were competing for a champions league place and were the only unbeated team domestically in europe in 2020..

    Being left out of the side for non footballing reasons has proved to be an embarrassment for Arsenal football club.

    Incompetence of the highest level.

  27. Sly

    There is an argument for fans being entitled
    The predominant issue isn’t entitlement
    More of enlightenment
    The modern fan is very educated on the game
    We may not have a day to day purview of the dealings between the coach and player but we can see the outcomes with team selection and player ostracism
    Fans are not toxic
    They’re just fans

  28. Pierre

    Upstate
    “Mari is a 27-year old CB who couldn’t land a single minute of playing time while with Man City. He didn’t look anything special in 3 games that he played last season, just as he doesn’t look anything special now. ”

    I’m not sure what you mean by special but i would rather have a centre back who is solid and dependable, and in the last 3 games that is exactly what he has looked…

  29. SAGG

    What has Saliba been doing all this time? The guy is playing horrible. Imagine him playing like that in the premier league.

    Rookie mistakes all over the place, it seems he is not ready to play gor Nice.

    The way Arteta handled the matter was atrocious but seems he was right about Saliba and we overspend in a player like needs a lot of work

    Maybe Saliba looks good because Fofana was his partner and not viceversa as everyone likes to say.

    And dont start saying “Saliba lost confidence” because the lad has a very big mouth telling all the world how he was ready to be a first team player and was wasting his time in the U23.

    It seems like Saliba spent most of the time moaning about injustice and braggin how he is better than the rest than keep working and show with performances why he shouod be in the first team.

  30. Northbanker

    Well if we’re relying only on ESR to remain fit then maybe if Arteta can take his new found love of youth another stage and recall Matt Smith from Swindon as a backup.

    He has also promoted Catalan Cirjan to the first team squad and perhaps he can also be blooded as a sub. Both are capable of playing as a cam.

  31. Rich

    SAGG

    Calm down.

    Saliba is 19, he’s not played a competitive game in 10 months.

    He’s been at Nice 48 hours, he hasn’t had a chance to build up any on field relationships.

    Let the lad breath, build up some minutes and some confidence.

  32. Northbanker

    I do however agree with Pierre on Mari. Holding and Mari can be ideal back up options and very useful for rotation. Ideally we will have 4 or preferably 5 CBs in our first team squad to take us through a season.

  33. Pierre

    Sly
    They are entitled..

    Now those same entitled fans who were toxic towards wenger for all those years would love champions league football and a top 4 finish.

    And some decent football.

    Be careful what you wish for they said, and it couldn’t be more apt for the entitled Arsenal fans.

  34. Mark

    Sagg

    And he’s still managed to looks more comfortable and accomplished than Mustafi or Kola . What does that say.
    Don’t know if I’d agree he’s been as bad as you say.

    PS not sure if you saw the long inch perfect pass he pinged out to their forward in 1st half. Never seen Kola or Mustafi do that once in all the time they were at AFC.

  35. Sly

    Characteristics of a generational coach?
    – youth development
    – courage to imprint an attacking/progressive pattern of play on a team
    -vision on how the game should be played this translates to what the fans see on the pitch
    -ability to learn or adapt from failure
    – emotional intelligence: lead and sacrifice ones ego for a collective goal
    -player development
    -maximize impact with available resources

  36. MidwestGun

    Blaming segments of fans for the team losing and declining into the current level … is Redtruth levels of analysis. Aka trolling. Josh Kroenke asked Wenger to retire because the team wasn’t performing to what they wanted nothing to do with Pedro’s blog. or anyone who was vocal about wanting change.

    Kroenke’s haven’t listened to fans. ever to my knowledge. Ask St Louis.about that. Again had Ozil performed to his level of ability Wenger would still be here.. If your suggesting the way fans criticize Arsenal on the internet affects the way Ozil plays.. that’s just ridiculous.

    Again winning erases any toxicity .. ask Frank Lampard about that.

  37. Tee

    “Mari is a 27-year old CB who couldn’t land a single minute of playing time while with Man City”

    jordan sancho couldn’t land a minute with man city. Does that make him less of a player?

    Hazard was mustard at chelsea but now a shadow of his former self.

    What’s really your point?

  38. Sly

    Pierre
    I agree Arsenal fans have entitlement issues
    Wenger( an actual generational coach) gave that to us and ‘died on that hill” not the xhaka one
    Isn’t That a characteristic of a big club though?

  39. MidwestGun

    Also Pierre… how about how you treated Emery? or is that different. way of supporting? Your agenda is clear… we get it. It’s everyone else’s fault but yours and certainly not Wenger’s.

    The whole self righteous fan routine ..is tiresome.

  40. Mark

    @Sagg
    “Rookie mistakes all over the place, it seems he is not ready to play for Nice”

    Really!!!

    He’s come in 1st game and he is the player bringing the ball out osnd building from the back. He’s carried the ball out and been heavily involved from the off. For a 19yr old he seems to have shouldered and handled a lot of responsibility very quickly. Yet you talk as if he’s had a mare.
    Sorry that’s agenda! Let’s see if any pros pundits/players agree with your take on his 1st ever match for a new team.

  41. Graham62

    It’s rather nauseating knowing we have a supporter in our midst who never saw the reality of things.

    Tends to happen when you only analyse your own life and actions and not that of others.

    Grip/ Stance/ Swing/ Contact point/Follow through.

  42. Rich

    Saliba vs Brest

    1 yellow card

    3 tackles
    1 interception
    2 offsides won
    3 clearances

    1 successful dribble

    85 passes
    6 long balls
    91.8% success rate

  43. Tee

    “Saliba nightmare debut for nice he defo needed to go and play maybe he can iron out his deficit before he comes back
    As for ozil fener are paying 90k a week towards his wages which is better than nothing”

    Glad he is having this nightmare on loan because if this is the case in an Arsenal jersey, these same moaners will eat him alive and also questioning his contract which could mar his development.

    “Arteta wasn’t here when the contract was running down. That’s not an excuse for his actions whilst here. He could have done more IMHO if he wanted to ensure he stays.”

    More like what? Can you listen to yourself at all? You willingly absolved the culprits who allowed Balogun to run down his contract saying it’s not an excuse but attack Arteta for not benching nkethia for Balogun right?
    This says more about your vendetta against Arteta than the issue at hand.
    I still don’t understand the overreaction and name calling from a section of le-grovers.

    If he eventually signs, I’m sure you will change the narrative to suit your agenda.

  44. Mark

    Thanks Rich.

    6 long balls 92% pass rate … Doesn’t sound that shabby for a 1st run out with a team you only met YESTERDAY!!

  45. Dissenter

    “What has Saliba been doing all this time? The guy is playing horrible. Imagine him playing like that in the premier league.”

    That’s what happened when we FROZE his career and stunted his development.

  46. Dissenter

    He joined the Nice team about 48 hrs ago, trained with them once or twice and convinced the manager that he’s good enough.

    He’s also RUSTY

    …and we were talking about an agenda?
    Mustafi has been dishing out shit for 4 years and he got offered an extension.

  47. Tee

    Rich, he can only get better.

    Just imagining what the scene would be like in here from them if nice has won and saliba put in a MOTM performance. It would have been Arteta is this and that.

    Saliba has a lot of matches to play to get back to fitness. There’s no need for all these scrutiny over one game. We need him to come back as a better player

  48. Upstate Gooner

    Tee
    “What’s really your point?”

    My point is that we didn’t another (average) CB. Not that hard to understand, is it?

  49. Mark

    but attack Arteta for not benching nkethia for Balogun right?

    It’s about what you do to resolve or solve a problem. Regardless of whether it arose when he was there or not. You act as if he’s powerless to influence Balogun’s decision.
    He could have given Balogun much minutes than he has. Not just to appease Balogun, our firm has been SHIT , we hadn’t scored in ages. So are you saying giving Balogun some of the minutes Eddie got, even in the Europa League wasn’t possible??
    Funny how you see me pointing out the obvious flaws in Arteta you see as an Attack.

    I’m just disappointed he’s not the manager I hoped he’d be, and I’m no longer going to ignore the mistake I see him making.

    If he fixes up he can stay a while longer, but long term I would like someone else. That’s my bottom line and it won’t change.
    He’ll do for now, but he’s not the One.
    Our Neo is still out there.

  50. Rich

    Tee

    We did mess up not getting him a loan, and not registering him for the Europa,

    But what’s done is done.

    Like you say, we just need him to come back a better and more experienced player,

    Hopefully he can pick up 20 games in Ligue 1 and find some form

    He was always going to be rusty, and it’ll take him some time to develop on field relationships.

    Think the situation has been blown out of proportion

  51. Mark

    @Tee “Just imagining what the scene would be like in here from them if nice has won and saliba put in a MOTM performance. It would have been Arteta is this and that.”

    We’ve been told that he wasn’t ready for the Prem. Not even the Euro’s ! So Kola and Mustafi have been given minutes even though we’re trying to get rid.
    I don’t think anyone expected a MOTM 1st performance, we just wanted to see how bad he was and how unready he was for the Prem.

    I’ve seen how nervous and scared both Kola and Mustafi regularly looked while playing for us in the Prem. And I’ll say it right now , Saliba should have been playing in Europa ahead of. Musta/Kola and could have got minutes and been eased in this season.

    He’s not worse than Musta/Kola so the not Prem ready was BS.

    Of that I have no doubts.

  52. MidwestGun

    *sigh* the be careful what you wish for arguement. Nobody I am aware of was wishing for the Club to sign Ozil to a monster contract after declining rapidly therefore hindering us in signing creative replacements and also allowing Ramsey and Sanchez to leave in the process.

    The thought process at the time was that the next manager and technical director after Wenger would be part of a new process that spent money and did it more wisely and addressed team needs. What ensued was a vacuum of leadership. because the transition was fucked.. Thanks Ivan G… Nobody wished for what happened or what we got. It wasn’t just about replacing Wenger something the AKB’s never understood.. it was about replacing him with fresh ideas and innovative leadership at all levels and not giving one person all the power.. and now look at what we got.. the same thing basically with Arteta in charge and hoping he can do a Wenger. Nobody I am aware of was wishing for that..

  53. Chris

    Interesting suggestion about Fabianski, he has got better with age in my view, and would be a solid number two for us, whether he would be willing to do that is the question. Are West Ham looking to let him go?

    I completely agree about another creative midfielder, ESR is an extremely exciting prospect but he absolutely needs to be handled carefully, and he will have ups and downs like most young players.

  54. MidwestGun

    I think it was Bacary is God suggested Flappy as a back up keeper last week … That would be an ideal scenario if we could pull that off.. in my opinion.

    But yeah for me… having another midfielder who can play the ESR role or even CM for when Partey can’t play is highest priority.. would prefer a transfer rather then a loan in an ideal world.. which it isn’t right now with Covid levels of income.

  55. Thorough

    SAGG

    ACCORDING TO THIS POST
    ‘Saliba vs Brest1 yellow card3 tackles
    1 interception
    2 offsides won
    3 clearances1 successful dribble85 passes
    6 long balls
    91.8% success rate’

    YOU’RE THE ONE HAVING A MARE.

    THAT LOOKS LIKE AN AWESOME DEBUT.

  56. MidwestGun

    Yeah, John Stones sighting .. forgot he played for City. De Bruyne and company playing very well in transition right now. City looking more likely to score another.

  57. Jamie

    Saliba’s career stunted because he trained with the under 23s for 4 months.. Jesus Christ.

    Explains why Martinelli’s career is over – he didn’t kick a ball for 6 months.

    “But but but that’s different!”

    If 4 months away from 1st team football is enough to wreck the career of a 19 year old centre back, he never would’ve made it at the top level.

    This Saliba loan talk is maddening. Let the kid get some minutes ffs.

  58. Upstate Gooner

    MGooner
    “What’s happening in the States.”

    Nothing to see here, we just have an idiot president, is all

  59. Radio Raheem

    Always said that Chiesa was a beast, brace tonight vs Milan in a huge game for Juve.
    ——-

    His dad was a baller too. Still some way for him to go to reach his dad’s level.

  60. WengerEagle

    Radio

    Fiorentina as a team are hopeless, no real surprise that as soon as he joins a proper side that he shines.

    One of Pirlo’s go to men, even benching a huge talent like Kulusevski.

  61. WengerEagle

    Radio

    Juve played most of that game with 10 men, Cuadrado the idiot got himself sent off.

    One of those classics 1-0 down to an early goal and chasing game a man down, close until that killer second towards the end.

  62. Mr Serge

    I agree with Jamie a Salina loan is only good for the lad he is 19 how many 19 year olds are regulars at CB 1 maybe 2 ?

  63. Radio Raheem

    Wenger eagle

    Hope Milan dust this off and pick it up again next match. With Juve’s squad depth expect them to go on a run of wins but I don’t want to see a tenth straight league title for the Old Lady.

    For the consistency Milan have showed the last year I’d like them to win it even ahead of Inter.

    Maldini, Chiesa, what is this the 90s?

  64. MidwestGun

    I still don’t see how Manc U is top of the table… They give teams so much space to play in… honestly I would want to play them every week.

    Oh well.. Hopefully City smack down Mourinho and the Spuds in the final.

  65. Radio Raheem

    City not conceding goals with their strikerless formation. They’ve got to now be favourites for the league with Liverpool faltering away from home.

    In terms of unpredictability this has to be the best Premier League season.

  66. Habesha Gooner

    I like Peter Drury. Who still remembers that goal at the Bernabau.

    “Its Thierry Henry, He scored, He scored for Arsenal in the Bernabau. Thierry Henry the Gunner Galactico.”
    I still have goosebumps. Oh how I miss those days when we played for something that mattered.

  67. WengerEagle

    Radio

    Haha, Marcus Thuram too another son of a 90’s legend in Lillian. Not to mention Giovanni Simeone, Kasper Schmeichel, Ianis Hagi, Timothy Weah, Justin Kluivert.

    Pretty nuts considering how incredibly difficult it must be to become a top level pro footballer that you AND your son could fulfil that dream.

    I still have Milan winning the league this season, they still have a nice gap on Juventus who I see as the only legitimate threat to last the distance because they’re full of star talent and have been there and done that already year in and out so nerves aren’t a factor.

    Whereas Inter under Conte I just don’t fully trust, lost today at Sampdoria and they’re just too mentally soft imo. Better on paper than AC Milan but AC have those intangibles and in Ibrahimovic, a serial champion and leader.

    Even tonight without Ibrahimovic, Rebic and Bennacer they put it right up to a full-strength Juve and gave them a tough match.

  68. MidwestGun

    In terms of unpredictability this has to be the best Premier League season.
    _______
    Yep…. it’s frustrating that we were so shit to start the season, the wheels coming off so many teams and we were too busy circling the drain ourselves to take advantage.

  69. Pierre

    Pep
    Absolute quality manager who has played this season to perfection after taking a beating from Leicester.

    He battoned down the hatches, made City almost impossible to score against , wasn’t at all bothered about playing open expansive football , conceded 7 goals in 22 games and have reached another cup final..

    The league is theirs this season, liverpool need to be worried as city are just getting into their stride , and that’s playing without a striker.

    I can see klopp losing it big time before the end of the season..

  70. WengerEagle

    ‘In terms of unpredictability this has to be the best Premier League season.’

    Agreed, 2015/16 wasn’t nearly as good because it was more case of all of the top teams massively underperforming than any discernable level-up from the smaller clubs.

    Whereas this season in Everton, Aston Villa, Southampton, Leicester, West Ham, Leeds, Wolves you have legitimately stronger lower table clubs that are able to put it right up to the league’s best teams on any given day.

  71. Habesha Gooner

    Guardiola has done the right thing in tightening up a bit. They would have won a champions league by now if he had done this earlier. I think they are the best of the bunch for me. Liverpool have come down a bit in terms of consistency. Lots of their players not hitting previous heights.

  72. Radio Raheem

    Damn Look at all those people protesting Ozil trying to transfer to DC United. Turkey it is then.. 😀
    ——-

    Hahaha

  73. WengerEagle

    Yeah City have been sneaky good defensively this season.

    Ruben Dias looks a great pick-up but John Stones has been outstanding too, credit to him.

    And Cancelo is so much better than Benjamin Mendy at LB it’s not even funny.

  74. Radio Raheem

    Thing is I don’t City have ever been bad defensively. Last season think they had the second best defence after Liverpool, conceded two fewer goals. Have always been top 4 of fewest goals conceded under Pep.

    Their problem has been their loss of concentration or simply bottling crucial (champions League) matches. That I’d argue comes from Pep.

  75. alex cutter

    “Damn Look at all those people protesting Ozil trying to transfer to DC United. Turkey it is then.. 😀”

    Really?

  76. Nelson

    US is very proud of their presidential election. The country won’t allow a bunch of losers destroying the heart of their political structure.

    Where is Dissenter? He may be among those demonstrators in Washington D.C. I thought there is a lock down in the States isn’t?.

  77. Henry19

    WengerEagle
    “Yeah City have been sneaky good defensively this season”

    Man City have conceded 13 goals after 15 games as opposed to 17 goals in 2019-20 season and 7 goals in 2018-19 season. So nothing sneaky good at all about it.

  78. MidwestGun

    Nelson…
    DC isn’t a state… they have their own rules. Constitutional writers didnt want any one state to control the Capital by virtue of it being in their boundaries.

  79. Radio Raheem

    If those protesters were mostly Arab looking or blacks I wonder if the police would have been more forceful in stopping them.

  80. MGooner

    @Raheem,

    I can’t see this stuff going away soon. The damage has been done, the country has been divided over the past 4 years. You’ll see more and more civil unrest there in the coming years.

    Biden will have a lot to do.

  81. Radio Raheem

    MGooner

    I’m glad there’ll be some reprieve from all the talk about covid the next 48 hours. I’m actually watching the news again 😃

  82. MGooner

    @Raheem

    The police actually let them in and were taking selfies with them. They delayed sending national guards too.

    Turkey should send some troops to help 😉

  83. Nelson

    Just heard the new rumor. Ozil will be on load to Fenerbahce and Arsenal will pay his salary. After that, Ozil will sign a contract with Fenerbahce.

  84. SAGG

    If you didnt see the game Nice vs Brest then dont bring the stats

    If we based performances about stats,then, Xhaka is GOD.

    Saliba found a Gear when his team was ALREADY LOSING BY 2. Consecuense of a Shaky start.

    Im not saying thta Saliba is a bad Footballer, but the lad, if you still doesnt know, is arrogant as hell. He is not one of the working type. This boy with his attitude issues, needs to hit the pitch running.

    I dont know if how he will fare in Ligue 1, but dont be suprised if he end the loan as bench player. For Saliba to succeed he needs to talk on the pitch aa much as he does in the dressing room.

    For the record Arteta meesed up with Saliba because he doesnt have a clue of how to work with Arrogant players that is why he has issues with all of them. Obviously Arteta being the most Arrogant of the bunch.

  85. Henry19

    Trump supporters are no different to Johnson supporters, he threatened civil unrest when he defied the courts during the Brexit Election in 2019

  86. Radio Raheem

    Long term we might have to do away with these institutions like a national legislature and whittle things down to the level of city states. It’s what it was before.

    In the UK we’ve seen deep divisions between the North of England and Westminster on their approach to dealing with covid.

    People give Trump too much credit he’s more symptomatic of a changing order than its cause.

  87. Dissenter

    Guns
    it was a solemn day, a day that will live in infamy
    It goes to show we aren’t that special a nation and we are just as prone to what happened to Germany in the ’30’s.There are too many empty and gullible people around ready to be used as props.
    I went to get my modern covid shot and saw a mile long convoy of MD state troopers and national guard proceeding to DC.
    It felt surreal, like a scene from a movie. The country will never be the same, an innocency was breached liker a hymen torn.
    Still can’t believe this happened.

  88. Guns of SF

    Diss

    Yes I was telling my wife the same thing, it shows how easily folks can get duped and easily led by a dictator and facist. This could easily be germany as well or any other country where the masses are duped and are blind followers. Its scary

    2 weeks left, I hope nothing more happens. one person dead already.

    This shit is unreal.

  89. Dark Hei

    Guns

    I do have sympathy for some of these Trump supporters.

    The coastal city elites are partly responsible for the madness. that descended on rural blue collared America.

    Trump is merely the agent that made them go over the rails. He certainly wasn’t the cause.

  90. Emiratesstroller

    Pedro

    I have been suggesting for weeks that Arsenal’s priorities needed to be firstly a mass clearout in current and summer transfer window followed by recruitment of experienced second string goalkeeper and lastly a top class creative midfielder.

    Realistically Arsenal are not going to receive any transfer fees for players leaving in January. No-one is going to pay us for players like Ozil, Sokratis, Mustafi or Macey if they
    were leaving this month. At best you are taking these players off the payroll.

    However, the lesson which will be learned from last 4-5 months is that we should not recruit players aged 30+ from our competitors and pay them inflated wages.

    Arsenal should be spending their limited transfer and wage budget on players who are on an
    upward curve.

    The goalkeeper situation is critical. Runarsson is not remotely our standard and the risk of
    him turning out in first team is there should Leno get injured or ill. This is not a situation that we can take a risk with.

    Creative midfield is important to address but I would not spend money on this position in
    January, because every club on planet knows our situation and will demand an inflated
    transfer fee. We need to buy someone who is genuine class and “good value for money”. I
    suspect that there will be funds available in summer.

  91. Anonymous Commentator

    How are people even judging saliba’s debut when he hasn’t kicked a ball in a competitive match for 8 months?
    It was never his debut that was going to show arteta up.

  92. Dissenter

    Guns
    Peopler just chant shit
    Rural blue collared America weren’t ready for the emergence of better educated and resourceful people in other countries could do their work for a small fraction of what they used too be paid.
    It’s the impact of technology, the emergence of robotization in industry and now artificial intelligence that’s devastated “rural blue collared America”.
    There are people in India, Brazil, China, Vietnam, Russia, Korea and at least 40 other countries i who can do what “blue collared” America was doing. This 1945 when American industry was the only one left untouched.
    Nothing to do with “elites”.