by .

I never quite understand the international football management scene. We have a golden generation of players in the first team, with Gareth Southgate leading the charge. We have a group of players in the U21s that were part of a world cup winning squad, and Aidy Boothroyd is running the show?

If any position should have a progressive coaching mindset, it’s the U21s. We have elite technical players capable of playing at the highest of levels, and we put a guy like that in the dugout?

I understand that there are different skills you need to make it at international level, but generally, it seems like you just need to be the sort of manager that can give a good pep talk.


Arsenal needs to shed some players this summer if we’re going to make headway signings players like Odegaard, Fekir, and a world-class right back. So where are we going to find the money?

There’s a batch of players that kind of fit the right profile for decent fees. Young, British, small pay packets.

Eddie Nkeitiah

Let’s be honest here, it just hasn’t worked out for the record scorer in the under 21s. He’s had chances, but never really taken games by the scruff. He’s a silent poacher versus the bang-bang sort of striker we might need in that #9 role moving forward. But… he’d be perfect for a team looking for a hunter. His finishing is really good and in a team that could afford to be patient, he’d be a good deal for a team like West Ham.

Reiss Nelson

I have no idea why Reiss didn’t go out on loan at the start of the season, he never had what was needed to break our first team… but to not take the chance to go out in January seemed really, really odd. Now everyone has forgotten that this kid scored against Liverpool last season. He has to go this summer, it’s a shame the fee will now be quite a bit lower than the £20m I think we were expecting pre-pandemic.

Joe Willock

This is a player that lacked the right focus at Arsenal. Given game time at Newcastle, he seems to have found something. The Newcastle fans like him, his athleticism and risk-taking has impressed, he’s making full use of his natural athletic gifts, and he’s making a case that he could do what Dani Ceballos is supposed to do. Question is, will the uptick in performances be good for our first team, or the coffers?

Matteo G

Man, this kid is on a mission to soil his name as hard as he can before the summer arrives. It’s either lunacy or genius.

‘If no one will buy me, maybe you’ll give me another chance?’

The Frenchman, made captain of the French U21s, has not made many friends in Germany. He’s raw talent, no doubt, but if you can’t give focus, you’re kind of pointless. It’s not looking like the most realistic destination is back with Sven Mislintat at Stuttgart. The fee will no doubt be quite low though, he’s damaged goods…


Well, I didn’t expect it would come to this a few months ago, but it’s looking ever more likely that Arsenal will move on Hector this summer. We love him, will always love him, but I’m not sure he’s developed at the rate you’d expect of a senior player at Arsenal. Word on the street is that one of our priority positions next season will be a right-back with elite final ball delivery on the radar. He’s a very good player though, so we should be picking up at least £30m there.

Mo Elneney

Look, he’s had plenty of chances, but I think we have to be honest, he’s not the level we need in central midfield and it’s probably best we don’t unleash a new deal. Being a good guy around training isn’t enough. He’s now at a decent enough level to get a lucrative move somewhere, we should take that chance. Getting subbed off on 55 against Olympiacos told a big story.

Lucas Torreira

He’s done so little over the last two years, I forgot to put him on the list. What that does to his price tag remains to be seen. Atleti hasn’t done him any favors, he’s managed a mere 400 minutes this season, a total waste of a move. Still, the benefit of signing young players is he’s still only 25. Someone will take a chance on him and we’ll at least recoup his value this summer.

Alex Lacazette

This one is a really, really huge one for Arsenal. The player has been an absolute star over the last few months. His link up play, dogged work rate, and now his goals have been a huge factor in the upshot of our form. However, all older players put in a shift heading into their last year… just look at how elite Willian was at the end of last season. Can a club as broke as Arsenal really afford to give someone with a pretty limited goalscoring record another 3 years on £180k a week? At 29? When you have Flo Balogun and Gabriel Martinelli on the books?

Also, it’s not just Arsenal this happens to. Look at Gareth Bale, using Spurs for a bit of a workout, now he’s heading back to Madrid to bum around for another year. Players heading for their 30s are thinking about security, players in their early twenties are thinking about survival. ESR vs Willian.

Heart says yes… but head says DON’T FALL FOR IT AGAIN.

Cal Chambers

Look, I really like Cal and put him here to make a point. If we don’t rate him, sell him, he’s very talented. If we do rate him, then we have to move on David Luiz this summer. I like Luiz on his good days, but there’s always a monster hiding in the cupboard with him and there always will be. Red cards, penalties, horrendous errors… not showing up for no real reason. Arteta was bailed out by young kids hungry to prove a point, I really can’t have us having a good end to this season, and all is forgiven for the absolute dreck the seniors gave October onwards. We have to start next year in stronger shape mentally than the last… that means making some big decisions, and it means re-upping how it felt to see a squad of players downing tools on you. Luiz was right in the mixer for that, he’s continued to make massive errors all year, and he’ll continue to be uninterested in lesser games… we should be making decisions on facts, not momentary confirmation bias. My gut says we’ll not learn our lesson there again and it’ll be Cal that says goodbye.

Some food for thought.

Finally, before we go, well done to the women’s team yesterday for absolutely crushing Spurs in the NLD. Miedema’s goal had shades of Bergkamp about it, superb technique.

Right, that’s all I have time for this week. Might have a couple of biz related podcasts for you next week. Stay tuned.

Off to ruin my day watching England. x

Also, check out this awesome video of Arsenal build-up play since Boxing Day. Send that to the melts that can’t see improvement. FOOLS I TELL THEE.


Jump to comment form ↓

  1. Dan

    Massive decisions and clear out to happen once again. The dream is to shift all the players you have mentioned in the hope that it can raise over 100m and then add 3 or 4 top quality starters to the team.

    Agee Laca has come good, but this is the right time to sell as he has never hit the heights and isnt going to get any better. We dont want him, Willian and Auba all over 31 and on massive contracts.

  2. SpanishDave

    Journos are saying clubs in England are lining up for Ode.
    We get him going and they move in to outbid us.
    We need a war chest to get him as he is our new DB 10

  3. G

    Soo Campbell. ’’ if I was white I would have been captain more then 3 times’’
    Strong words and mayb true

  4. Pedro

    Spanish Dave, he likes the Arsenal project, not sure there’s going to be a problem if we find the money. Still think another loan is most likely.

  5. Sid

    Posting a video on fast forward and the ball being played to the wings by CB only highlights how mediocrity has been normalised

  6. SpanishDave

    Pedro hopefully you are right.
    It would be great if some of the fans could be at the Stadium to show him our support for him.
    If we could get him and Neto we would fly

  7. Cazorla

    Sid if your takeaway from that video is nothing other than that then you’re watching the wrong sport.

    No improvement and mediocrity? Go lay down son.

  8. Wiglaf


    Sol Campbell was a world class centre half but he was never a captain of England in an era of so many leaders
    He was barely ever arsenal captain at a time when our captains were black and foreign. Why doesn’t he moan about that? Because he can’t
    That England team had Adams Beckham Shearer Neville ince scholes gerrard Terry Rooney James and Rio

    I don’t think Sol was ever respected as a personality in the dressing room enough to be a captain. The guy can barely talk properly. He can’t seem to finish his own sentences on sky sports and reportedly had such severe psychological issues that he had to leave arsenal

  9. Sid

    What is on that video wengers worst teams would do that on their worst days, now its described as improvement? Who set that low before chrismas to begin with?

  10. G

    Wiglaf get some of your points but to say he was not respected in the dressing room is not true.. he did after all captain Spurs, Arsenal and 3 times for England

  11. Bertie Mee

    Very interesting post Pedro and I think I’m with you on the individuals you mention . I’d love to see us move on Xhaka but doubt that will happen and we need to beware the homegrown rule hence the attraction of Chambers who could be a replacement for Elneny as a holding midfielder . One senses Arteta values Luiz but we should have enough options to release him ( and a meaty wage ) . Pepe is another we might release if the offer was attractive . We have a number of centre backs on loan of which Ballard may be the most interesting and we may see Azeez move up . .
    Your list would raise around £.100 m if the market reverts to pre-pandemic levels but Edu hasn’t been able to sell players well. thus far . The big question would be posed if we were offered very silly money for Saka or ESR or even Martinelli.
    We will probably need to sign Ryan, two full-backs, a CM and a striker as well as Odegaard so expect a loan deal to be attractive for the Norwegian next season

  12. SWG

    Sid get in the bin fella..
    I agree with Pedro on all names mentioned above being allowed to leave if suitors are found for the right prices.
    I would happily add Xhaka to that list, if you used his name instead of Luiz’s above, it gives a bang on description of him and for that reason he should be sold and replaced by Yves Bissouma.
    Right back to come in for Hector should be Hakimi. Absolutely lightning and even has goal in his repertoire.. also Aarons, Lamptey, Corona (cheap RC) would all strengthen us massively.
    Andre Silva from Eintract as a CF with Martinelli & Flo (if he stays) as back ups to replace Laca and hopefully Auba who, let’s be honest has well and truly played us all for fools for that big contract. I’m also sure Ivan Toney is going to succeed wherever he ends up so he should also be considered.
    I am also looking forward to seeing Saliba given the opportunity, there is no way he offers less than Luiz or Chambers. Maybe even Dino’s time to shine!
    We could also be light in the middle with Ceballos going back (there’s no way we should consider him), Elneny joining a Turkish side, Willock joining a mid table side, hopefully Xhaka going back to Germany.. give Azeez more PL mins this season to prepare him for more game time next season.
    Desperately need a back up LB, yes Cedric filled in there but I didn’t think he looked too comfortable on his left peg. Should look cheap/free here like Bertrand or a punt on a youngster from overseas.
    Last and certainly not least, Odegaard. Sign him for anything Madrid want ! – Well anything £50m or south of it.. we know we all won’t have the finances in a time of need from Uncle Stan!

    Leno, Ryan

    New RB from above, AMN, Cedric

    Gabriel, Mari, Saliba, Holding, Dinos

    KT, new signing

    Partey, new signings from above x2, Azeez

    Odegaard, ESR

    Pepe, Saka, ESR, Martinelli, sign replacement (if we could move Willian and Auba on) – Neto would be my no.1 but we would never stump up the cash!

    Silva, Martinelli, Flo

    Cut throat but we need change! This is also very much impossible this summer 😂

  13. Nelson

    The way Luiz lost the header to Michail Antonio convinced me that we should not resign him. He was so half heart and allowed Antonio ran towards him and beat him with the header.

  14. Habesha Gooner

    Luiz should be cut. He has lost a lot of pace. And when he was young and going for world record fees, he wasn’t bought because of his positioning abilities. They signed him because he is an all action player. And you can’t do that with a snail’s pace. He switches off multiple times in a game. I have seen him expose his partners so many times this season it’s beyond ridiculous. He will be a weakness in our team if we give him a new contract.

  15. Northbanker

    Agree with all of that list Pedro and add AMN. Don’t renew Luiz. Love to add Xhaka but that might just be too much to hope. If we could sign someone like Kanate then I’d add Mavro.

    I would keep Pepe in the hope we will get more for him a year later post Covid (there are only so many players you can sell successfully in one TW)

  16. Wiglaf


    I said I don’t think he was respected as a personality ENOUGH. He had to be respected as a player. His level demanded it. But as a captain? Nope. It wasn’t just one manager that passed him over. He was only given the armband at spurs to placate him.

  17. azed


    I don’t think anyone would pay money(real or monopoly) for Runnarson.

    We are stuck with him till his contract expires.

  18. SWG

    Pedro, if you’re reading.. who would you like to see come in if we move on the players mentioned? (Obviously within reason) Or is that your next post? 😂

  19. Danny

    Interesting that Tierney is playing for Scotland not as a left back winger but as one of the 2 centre halves and he rarely crosses the half way line.

  20. Emiratesstroller


    Arsenal still have a large collection of unwanted players who are realistically not good enough to play for us at the level of expectation.

    Apart from those you list we should add also Nketiah and Maitland-Niles. I watched tonight the England U21s and Nketiah was frankly awful. He is a limited footballer and as was pointed out England had barely a single strike on goal.

    We need to accept that there are very few players in our Academy who are likely to make the transition to make the grade at senior level. If you are lucky perhaps one or two are
    going to be good enough in every three or four years.

  21. China1

    Wiglaf what are you talking about

    Sol was deputy captain for much of his time at arsenal and when vieira wasn’t playing (often because he became relatively injury prone in his latter years) that meant Sol was captain

    He probably captained 25+ matches for arsenal. Perhaps many more

    He was one of the best players in England during his peak and was absolutely pivotal to arguably the greatest PL side and season of all time. He deserved more from England

  22. China1

    I hate 3-4-3

    It’s such a miserable setup

    I know in the right hands and with the right team it can work but I’m always disappointed when I see any team choose it

  23. China1

    Who can forget during the 50 game unbeaten run we used to have those prematch huddles also led by Sol getting the players in the zone. The guy was a phenomenal leader and player

  24. Sid

    A midfield of Xhakalson, Ramsey with Giroud as CF played better football and got better results than we are seeing now.

    Let that sink in

  25. China1

    Xhaka Ramsey ozil was perhaps the most imbalanced center you’ll ever find. Not one of those players was suited to the others lol

  26. Sean M

    Pete we are really struggling with the number of homegrown players in our squad. I don’t think we’ll be able to sell some of those names unless we sign other homegrown players.

    Cal Chambers

    Are all homegrown and the first three will contribute to the homegrown status from next season. Don’t know how the club will navigate around that.

  27. kjelli

    There is a Haaland lookalike in the Russian striker Dzyba, he would be great against EPL defenders
    and has sublime technique also.. sell Laca Auba and AMN Willock etc..

  28. Sean M

    Don’t write off Reiss Nelson. I don’t know why it’s not worked out for him. But that guy is extremely talented.

    Ask anyone around youth football/ even youth players at Arsenal. Talent wise he’s above Saka and ESR, who are killing it in the prem at the moment. They would tell you that themselves. Sad it hasn’t worked out for him. Expect him to have a good career somewhere.

  29. Sid

    Im struggling to see how Partey is an upgrade on Ramsey, though he is shit defensively, partey is meh offensively
    On salaries and injuries its a tie

    One step forward one step backwards

  30. Dream10

    According to Ornstein, Liverpool are about to sign Ibrahima Konaté, the Leipzig CB. That is a quality signing. Should make a great pairing with a healthy van Dijk next season.

  31. Crimson

    I’m struggling to see how sid is a arsenal fan, an upgrade on Pierre, though he is a shit. Sid is offensive and mind numbingly- MEH.
    On idiotic thoughts its a tie
    Two sad individuals two steps toward negativity

  32. Raulishuss

    Say what you want about Pierre but he’s one of the truest fans on here. Sid is just a boring attention seeker and I’m telling you that for free

  33. Emiratesstroller

    Sean M

    You need more than “raw talent” to make the transition from the Academy to EPL level.

    For a start you need a football brain. Nelson may well be a talented footballer, but he has failed to make the transition for other reasons.

    Listening to Jeorge Bird’s interview and also what I discussed with a sports journalist who follows the Academy the two standout players in recent years were Saka and Smith-Rowe
    and that has proved correct.

    It remains to be seen who will follow those two. The main candidates appear to be Azeez and Patino.

    David Seaman has made also an interesting analysis of the goalkeeper situation in England.
    He suggests that it is increasingly difficult for a English Goalkeeper to make a breakthrough
    to top level. Few managers are prepared to take a risk and play a teenager or player in early
    20s. They want to recruit from overseas readymade players from Europe.

    Arsenal have had in recent years a number of talented homegrown academy goalkeepers
    who might have made the grade. Martinez is the most obvious example who is incidentally
    someone who could qualify to play for England. By all accounts Okonkwo is also immensely
    talented but like many other youngsters of his age “impatient” to play at a higher level, which may explain why he is likely to leave the club this summer.

  34. Samir

    Sid must live a very depressing life. All he does is complain and tell us things for free.

    Liven up mate, you only live once.

  35. China1

    Sean surely the loophole to homegrown shortages is just to promote kids to the squad? Or is that against some rules?

  36. Batistuta

    Any type of sale that doesn’t include finding a buyer for Xhaka and replacing with better quality will just be us having another groundhog day season.

    Sell Lacazette, we should have learnt our lessons by now but we’ve got a rookie so most likely he’ll be given a super new contract and everyone will be here to complain about how the Kroenkes are holding us back

  37. Batistuta

    If we can’t get any of the English midfield targets I’m sure we could get a Frank Kessie over here, he’s improved and matured his game in leaps this season. Has the engine that Xhaka doesn’t and knows how to dominate a midfield too. Would be a perfect partner for Partey

  38. The Bard

    Spot on Pedro. I agree with those sales. With the state of our finances I don’t expect us to be in for anyone substantial, maybe a loan or two. Signing the likes of Ode are pure fantasy.

  39. Dissenter


    I just thought that was very funny. Surely Ramsey can’t be that daft.

  40. China1

    Agreed Baptistuta

    People keep talking about buying players in less influential positions or where we are already stacked

    And sure enough the same people will be scratching their heads when our midfield lets us down for yet another season

  41. China1

    It took us 15 years to buy a powerful CM since losing Vieira and for the first time we don’t have a more technical sort to accompany him

    It’s like an addiction arsenal have to sacrificing dominance in the middle of the park.

    I’d love arteta to prove me wrong this summer and finally enable us to go into next season with a first choice midfield that is fit for purpose

  42. Sid

    The diet pep fanboys are out to get me, for telling it as it is, its clear our midfield is NOT living up to expectations, whether due to injury proness, or lack of technique

    For 45m + 35m (wont mention names, the diet pep fanboys will be out with their pitchforks)we should be getting better

  43. Sid

    When Ramsey got injuries it what was the reason again? Was he a crock that we should not give a contract? Was he overplayed?

  44. Dream10


    I wouldn’t.classify Partey as a powerful CM. He is a good ball winner but has very good technical ability. He’s not as powerful compared to say McTominay or a Yaya Touré.

  45. Dream10


    We need to sign a first XI choice that can partner both Xhaka and Partey. Granit has a tremendous fitness record. Thomas is a quality player but I have the feeling he’ll be a player who will miss chunks of time at Arsenal (even though he was almost available at Atletico)

  46. Nelson

    I have watched the two games from the Norway national team. They lost both games and Ødegaard looked quite average. I can understand why Ødegaard enjoys his football in Arteta’s system. Maybe the club can use that to remind Madrid that Ødegaard is not that superior after all. Arteta can find another player to play the same role in his system.

  47. Mr Serge

    Granit is made of granite we just need a player like that who is not as slow moving as granite.

    so sell him and get a mobile player in there instead we will be miles better

  48. Freddie Ljungberg


    I could have told Juve that for free 2 years ago.

    Still can’t believe some people wanted us to keep him. Best thing we’ve done in years getting rid of all our injury prone Cam/CMs, With Ozil now gone too that’s about 800k a week off the wage bill that can be put to better use hopefully.

    Has taken a bit of time to get the quality up again and we won’t see the full benefit of it until after the summer window but that was absolutely crucial in us moving forward. Can’t have that much resources tied up in 5-6 players that plays the same position and are all unable to play more than half a season each, or in Ozils case is just done as a footballer.

    We don’t have to break the bank to improve either, if we can’t afford Bissouma there’s Soumare or Kessie for less, There’s plenty of strikers on the market going for reasonable fees, Edouard, Daka, Sima, Thuram etc.

    If we can’t afford Odegaard there’s options for that too, main thing is we keep improving the squad, it hasn’t been linear since Wenger left but that squad is nearly purged now and we’ll be much better for it.

  49. Terraloon


    We won’t know for sure till the 20/121 accounts are published but my guess is the Partey money is a loan.


    Although 8 berths in the 25 man squad are reserved for HG players there is no requirement to fill all or indeed any of those squad places or indeed name 25 players aged over the age of 21

    In theory you could go with no players named in your squad .I know that sounds daft but you are able to list as many under 21 players as you like so whilst it’s highly unlikely that it will ever happen you could play all under 21 year old players and as such none of them would require to be named in your 25 man squad

  50. China1

    Has xhaka ever missed a game through injury? I seriously cannot remember one lol

    If his overall game was half the level of his robustness he’d be the best midfielder ever

    How is it even possible to pick up virtually zero knocks in your entire career?

    Seriously I can’t think of one other player for any team anywhere around who is 100% available for selection for 100% of matches for 100% of their career

  51. Marko

    Cannot have a serious conversation about exits this summer without the issue of the manager being discussed. Marco Rose is unfortunately off the table but maybe a hail mary type proposal to Nagelsmann could save us. Either way Arteta has to go otherwise next season will be more of the same.

  52. Uwot?

    “ saucy” Arteta is fine.It’s all about the “ deadwood “ .Of which there is still a shitload to shovel.

  53. Terraloon


    For me there are two huge Elephants in the room and that is 1) the £120 million Arsenal need to pay back HM Government and 2) The vast sum that needed to be paid in 20/21 in respect of historical transfers.

    I just can’t see that many clubs will be buying other clubs cast offs. When. I read some of the fees that some are suggesting for the likes of Bellerin I just shake my head.

    So then you have to look at which leagues in Europe will be willing or able to pay big when clubs like Chelsea will happily let players out on loan and even if they do sale players Chelsea would be far more willing to accept small % of the fee now and the bigger sums in the latter stages of the players contracts whereas Arsenal will be wanting a greater % immediately.

    Put all that together and I think there are going to be a few disappointed supporters. I can’t see any way that Luis won’t get another year, Bellerin may go but not for anywhere near £30 million . Lacazette won’t leave for a fee he will either see out his contract or possibly walk on a Webster.

    Unless KSE inject more cash I just can’t see many top class incomings. At very very best I can see any cash generated being the transfer budget but if you sell say 4 squad players to bring in one top class player then I am far from sure that is the answer.

    A real dilemma is what happens to the two RM loanees. Will RM sell one or both ? Will they return on loan? Will they leave ? Irrespective one way or another it’s gonna cost to get them back and whilst they have added to the squad if you can convince them to stay that isn’t improving the squad as it is at this point in time.

  54. Pedro

    Sean, hopefully we can promote some homegrown into the first team. Not sure many of the Hale Enders are going to want to fester because we need homegrown talent.

    Matt Smith has looked very good during his loan, he’s 20. Azeez has been very impressive. Kiddo Hart might get the jump. AMN will be given another go next season.

  55. Samir



    Is much better than what we currently have. Would be happy with that for CM. Add in Azeez and Cirjan and we’re laughing.

  56. Pedro

    BFB, ‘out of depth’ arguments getting harder to qualify with reality. Bit of a poverty view these days.

  57. Crimson

    Azeez has been improving and impressive. Not just that wicked goal the other day. But solid if you watch the undy 23s. Can he make the leap up?
    Jude Bellingham is….

  58. Nelson

    The team is still quite inconsistent. If we can minimize that, we are already half way there. I think the players should yell at each other more often during the game, especially when some players are showing sign of lack of focus or confusion. I like the way Ødegaard talking to Laca and Saka. Partey and Xhaka should talk more. on the pitch. It is important that the game is solid in the midfield, both with and without the ball.

  59. Crimson

    Side note- Dani Ceballos has passion and I love his celebrations when we score.
    Not a game changer I thought he was. Too many Silly mistakes. I’d take him for 15 million. If not adios Daniel…Good luck with Zizou

  60. Guns of SF

    Players heading for their 30s are thinking about security, players in their early twenties are thinking about survival.

    well said Pedro

  61. Emiratesstroller


    I would be interested to learn why you think that AMN will return to the club at end of season and given another chance. Where do you think that he will play in team?

    He will be in final two years of his contract. I would have thought that Arsenal will make a
    serious effort to unload a number of players including AMN and generate a decent transfer budget.

  62. Johng

    I think Laca should and more than likely will go, but I think that we will only manage to move on 2 or 3 players this summer and squad will look very similar to this year so some more patience required next season unfortunately.
    Would like to see how Torreira would get on along side Partey. I didn’t think he was given a proper shot under Emery, sometimes playing him as a more or less no 10

  63. Johng

    Arsenal’s head of goalkeeping Andy Woodman is leaving to manage in the lower divisions. Was he the joker who found Runnarson, if so think he may have jumped before being pushed

  64. The Bard

    There are some sensible posts today. It would seem some are waking up at last to the fact that we are skint and in the current climate unlikely to be able to bring in expensive players. A revival of the clubs fortunes is going to be a long process. We need to buckle up and enjoy the ride. Moaning about our deficiencies and calling for the managers head is wasted energy.

  65. Crimson

    Andy woodman! The ex northampton legend. Dad of the excellent Freddie that was linked with us.
    Nope I believe it was the goalkeeper coach that advised us to buy Runnarson. Waste of 1 million

  66. Terraloon


    My point about the two RM players is that even if you do sign them , which I personally don’t think is going to happen, is that that hasn’t improved the squad

  67. Sean M


    The Requirement is basically this: Each Premier League team can only register 25 players over the age of 21 for that season’s first-team matches. Of those 25 players, no more than 17 can be non-Home Grown Players. In other words, if you want the full complement of 25 over-21 players, you have to have at least 8 Home Grown Players. Note that this rule ONLY applies to Premier League matches, not fixtures in other competitions.

    A Home Grown Player, as defined by the Premier League, is a player who: (a) is 21 or older on January 1 of the year in which that season begins; and (b) spent three years between the ages of 16 and 21 with a team in the English football League system.

    So Azzez, Kido etc are homegrown but because they’re under 21 they won’t need to be registered.

  68. Nelson

    AMN:,”“I think I’m developing a lot quicker here because you’re consistently improving your game and fighting to be the best”

    Arsenal midfielder Ainsley Maitland-Niles believes he is “developing a lot quicker” on loan at West Brom and is relishing the chance to play in midfield. The England international has got plenty of minutes since making the switch and he believes it is helping his game.

    If AMN can keep his concentration the whole game, he is a better DM than Elneny and Guen and even Torr, since Torr doesn’t like the British weather.

  69. Sean M


    That’s true. Unfortunately, The other aspects aside haven’t been at the required level on a consistent basis. But once they hopefully do, my goodness he is going to shock everyone. Don’t write him off is all I’m saying.

    A couple of players have stood out not only those two. Nelson, Willock, Ballard, Nketiah, Amaechi, Balogun, Matt Smith, Trae Coyle had a good season last year and the season before at U18’s, John-Jules and that’s just at U23 level.

    And nope Azeez and Patino are not the next candidates imo. Both Talented however a number of players are ahead of them in terms of development. Coyle, John-Jules, Matt Smith, Balogun, Ballard, McGuiness, Medley. Some could get sold but majority are all ahead of them at the moment.

    Seamann is right. Regarding Okonkwo he is talented should’ve been the third choice this season instead of Runarsson. However he didn’t play at all last season due to personal challenges.

    A number of young GK’s have made it though. Szczęsny, Pickford, Butland, Ramsdale, Henderson.. etc however, it’s really tough for them academy players want to be exposed to first team football ASAP. He could potentially go out on loan

  70. Johng

    So if Partey is our new PV4 where can we find a cheap an unknown Petit (UNDERATED IN MY OPINION)to partner him

  71. Champagne Charlie

    Think bumming up the academy prospects, like Azeez, is such an easy way to shoot yourself in the foot for next season. He is not there to be relied upon as a CM option next season, it’s as simple as that until he proves otherwise.

    To bank on a player making that leap in quality with no transition is, utterly ridiculous as far as squad building goes.

    ESR and Saka have been massive, massive bonuses to our squad the last 18 months. But as good as they are we saw the detriment of having no ‘senior’ central attacking mid until Odegaard rocked up.

    There needs to be a skeleton squad in place before any of the academy players make additional signings void. Traditionally speaking that’s 2 options per position plus a handful of the cream of the academy.

  72. Johng

    By the way Pedro enjoyed watching some great football on your compilation video, here’s hoping for plenty more and scoring some goals at the end of them.

  73. Champagne Charlie

    Haha similar inference

    Aguero leaving City end of the season, PL legend and one of the very best pure strikers I’ve seen in top gear. City letting him go in a similar hour of his career that we signed Auba to a mega deal.

    They seem to get it right in the main with when to let players move on, at least that’s the impression I get.

  74. The BFB

    Pedro, so my “out of depth” arguments are hard to qualify with reality. The reality is: Emery’s 51 Premier League games yielded 88 points; coincidently, Wenger’s last 51 games also produced 88 points and Arteta’s last 51 games have resulted in a mere 79 points.Yet you lavish the latter with praise and never cease to denigrate the other two. And you wonder why some of us are cynical?

  75. Johng

    CC your right they do seem to move on players at the right time but unlike us they can go to Harrods and shop for a nice shiny new one. Knowing them they will probably replace him with Haaland or of similar quality

  76. Pedro

    BFB, that’s a disingenuous comparison made by people with an axe to grind. It’s also really, really amateur analysis, the sort that’d be laughed out of any elite sports boardroom.

    Emery worked with 2 full preseasons in a non-pandemic world
    Arteta picked up his dumpster fire and then had to fix it during the most consequential event to ever hit elite sport

    ‘The pandemic isn’t a mitigating circumstance’ is by far the dimmest observation in Arsenal fandom at the moment.

  77. NJ Gooner


    I agree. A brand new coach, with no experience as a manager, came on board at a unique moment in our history. He is then compared to people who have been in their jobs for a while, with far greater experience and (possibly) a settled squad.

    Those are no circumstances to offer a serious evaluation of the merits of anybody.

    Another season, under (approaching) normal circumstances is reasonable. I am a fan of Arteta but even I would strain at the credulity of his continued appointment if we didn’t see a substantial improvement.

    How long do you think is a fair measure before we judge and what would he have to achieve by then? I listen carefully to your blog but don’t recall you actually stating the what and when.

  78. Pedro

    NJ, if his half season record carries through to next season, we’re cooking. If he’s 10th this time next year, he’ll not be renewed.

    Pretty simple.

    All the things people wanted to happen at Christmas have happened.

    Is this football good? Yes.
    Are we creating high quality chances? Yes
    Are we solid in defence? Yes
    Are we beating big teams? Yes

    Plenty to fix. Some character flaws still plague us. Individual errors are problematic. But overall, the focus on how to fix us is the narrowest it’s been in 10 years.

    Gotta plough on… table bangers gonna bang tables… but most see the vision. Just watch that video above.

  79. Champagne Charlie


    Still a lot of unnecessary shit can be bought at Harrods. Having money is a massive help, but City have spent incredibly well.

    Only need to look at the squad they have versus Man United. Same shelf they’re shopping on, but one has had a much, much sharper eye for what’s needed to fit their remit.

    We might be Aldi, but we’ve been as coherent as the bargain buckets in there.

  80. The BFB

    Pedro, what do you mean amateur analysis? I’ve produced the results from the last 51 games which gives a pretty good picture of our overall position concerning this season and the second half of last term. Yet all you keep banging on about is the results after Christmas as if the previous form doesn’t count. If we don’t make top 6 or fail to win the poor mans Champions League Arteta would have failed.

  81. Pedro

    BFB, it’s shit analysis.

    It’s like comparing three airline CEOs over the last decade and digging out the pandemic one for having bad numbers.

  82. China1

    Hang on hang on hang on Pedro

    You can’t say the points comparison is overly simplistic then say just because emery had 2 preseasons and no pandemic his role was easier

    Emery took over from a legendary manager of 23 years. Nobody will find that easy.

    Compare the squad emery inherited with the one we have under arteta’s improved form and it’s night and day

    The pandemic is a very silly excuse which has been debunked time and again because the pandemic only appears to be an excuse being used by us and a few other teams whilst most teams have managed through it just fine give or take

    Lastly artetas terrible run of form happened a year into the job after he had already made a good start. That made less sense than if it had happened in his first season whilst he was still adapting

    Emery was crap and rightly got the boot but at least spare us the mental gymnastics about arteta. I’m glad we’re doing better now but the attempts to whitewash his and emery’s history are so blatant it’s not even funny.

  83. China1


    Please tell us which teams have been royally fucked by the pandemic. Teams where we can say quite clearly they reason they’re having a bad season is the pandemic’

    Would love to know.

  84. China1

    Apparently Tuchel made the pandemic disappear for Chelsea

    City never got impacted this season

    Utd are doing ok

    Leicester doing well

    Liverpool got fucked by injuries

    Leeds doing well

    Villa doing well

    Everton not bad

    West ham doing great

    Spurs where I’d expect them to be

    Which team has had a toilet season where you can say ‘yes it’s the pandemic that got them’?

  85. China1

    Your love in with arteta would be so much more widely tolerated if you didn’t always whitewash his mistakes whilst shitting on the mistakes on his predecessors

    We see you doing it’s it’s not subtle

  86. China1

    Here’s an interesting question for you Pedro

    If the emery had walked in the door and in his first season had this season’s:

    Fit Tierney

    – do you think he would’ve got the extra 2 points needed in his first season to come third and get into the CL?

    Serious question

  87. China1

    Dissenter I don’t mind him having a fetish. We’ve all got players or managers who we think are the dogs bollocks, I know I do

    But I just don’t get why we can’t call a spade a spade. There always has to be some ducking diving deflecting and the like to try and reshape the narrative in a better light. Why?

    I’d love to know why the pandemic forced us to go into this season with poor tactics, poor formation, poor team selection, bizarre transfer window mistakes and poor man management.

    Unless arteta suffered from brain fog when making decisions caused by long covid then its safe to say all the primary factors that caused us to throw the league campaign away were self inflicted errors

    Saying that doesn’t meant we don’t look a good chunk better recently. The direction is looking better. The performances generally are better. Most of our biggest problems appear to be getting worked on. That’s great.

    But that doesn’t mean we write off the first half of the season and pretend it didn’t happen or it was all covid’s fault. Why must it be all or nothing?