by .

Daniel Ek, Spotify mastermind, is back with another bid for Arsenal FC. Is this interesting? Could be. I’m not deeply entrenched in the world of billionaire behaviour, but there are rumblings that KSE might not be as entrenched in the idea of holding onto Arsenal forever as they project.

Understand their vision of sport.

Locked finances. No promotion or relegation. A consistent flow of revenue every year. NO INVESTMENT.

They bought Arsenal, watched it appreciate at breakneck speed, but the vibe in the game at the moment is that maybe the growth years are grinding to a halt. Amazon didn’t want in on the Super League. Clubs are reeling from the pandemic, just look at the whining from the Juve hierachy. The Super League, for the moment, is dead.

To bring Arsenal back to the top is going to take a lot of money. More money than the pittance KSE will put forward for us this summer. That takes deep pockets and deep dedication. I’m not sure the KSE group has either of those when it comes to Arsenal.

So whilst I think £2bn seems low for Arsenal, don’t totally rule it out. Daniel Ek, you would imagine, must have had some sort of encouragement, otherwise, what is the fucking point? It’s not giving him a bump in stock price for Spotify, he doesn’t need a profile massage, and it costs money to put these sorts of deals together.

Remember, Stan Kroenke told St. Louis he’d never move the Rams until he did.

Onto transfer news… there’s not a lot going on. Arsenal seems to be making moves in silence. There aren’t many clues as to who is going and staying.

Granit Xhaka is causing the most panic for some odd reason. Arsenal fans just love to whine. 99% of fans have spent his entire career moaning about how we’ve nosedived to a non-Champions League club since he joined, now they’re panicking because the stats nerds are championing his progressive passing. Stockholm Syndrome well and truly out in force. He’s a solid player, but his limitations have been costly. The errors in his game never went. We can replace him. 25m euros is good money for someone who will be 29 in September.

It’s also interesting watching people cry about the Matteo G fee like it’s Arsenal’s fault. Joe Willock goes out on loan for 6 months and moves from a £10m player to a £25m one. Matteo G, total hot shit for a while, goes out on loan for an entire season, absolutely soils his reputation, and is now worth £8m. No big clubs are eyeing a 22-year-old bargain and none of the elite feeder clubs are willing to take a chance. If this is an Arteta problem, why haven’t any of the major coaches spied an error in the system?

Unai Emery, flush with Champions League cash has ignored him. Sven Mislintat, who certainly has £8m, has also ignored him. Why?

… because talented dickheads are not tolerated in 2021.

The big move, that just dropped, is Arsenal are being linked to Inter Milan’s Nicolo Barella. Mike had him in yesterdays epic scouting report.

‘A tigerish CM who has elbowed his way into a very competitive Italian national team due to his all-round game and reliability. A technically excellent midfielder who will remind you of the much loved Cazorla as he switches the ball from right to left with such natural confidence. At Arsenal he could play as a playmaker or likely in a two but with his elite technical level he could play anywhere. Such fun to watch so take a look…’

It’s hard to judge his pace, because Italy is painfully slow, but my word is the boy talented. He’s aggressive, has an outrageous range of passing and he just won the Serie A title. Absolute class, he’ll drop a big performance this summer, it seems too clever to be a link worth taking seriously, but we’ll see.

Ainsley has been complaining in the press about the lack of contact from Arsenal.

‘I want a decision. I want some clarity. I would like some kind of indication of what is happening. Where they [Arsenal] see me. If it works out it works out, if it doesn’t then kiss Arsenal goodbye.’

Pretty sure Mikel Arteta is on his first family holiday in 2 years, so not really shocked Ainsley hasn’t had a phone call yet. But I suspect we’ll see him exited this summer if he keeps up the pressure on wanting to play as a centre midfielder. Hopefully we can land a good fee if that’s the case, we have to make the most of the homegrown premium this summer.

There’s also a link to Alexander Isak, who scored 17 goals for Sociedad this season. The Swedish striker is having a great year. He’s tall, boasts power, tight control, and excellent technique. Reminds me a bit of Adebayor with the range of goals he’s produced. I can see why he’d be interesting a club that doesn’t really have a powerhouse forward to lead the frontline unless you count Martinelli as a #9. I think a lot of big things would have to happen for us to shell out on a major forward. Flo Balogun didn’t sign a new deal to be Eddie’d this season, he’s expecting minutes and he’ll get them. I’m also not sure we’ll find a buyer for Auba or Lacazette. Those huge deals have minimal chance of being replicated in a bankrupt Europe this summer, so I suspect we’ll keep things the same there.

I think that’s all I have? See you in the comments. Listen to the podcast below.


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377 Responses to “FLIPPING EK, £2BN BID INCOMING?!”

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  1. Champagne Charlie


    That’s not, nor has it ever been, the argument though is it?

    Are we likely to get a Bissouma or Anguissa for 10 mil? Absolutely not, relegation or otherwise. The argument is that it’s terrible planning to fill one area of the pitch with players that will vacate for 6 weeks mid-season.

    We have Partey and Elneny who are the sum of our CM with Xhaka departing. Adding a premium African player to those three seems incredibly stupid.

    But you’ve argued it’s not, and tried to equate AFCON to the Euro’s….that’s the disagreement.

  2. raptora

    Saliba’s transfer or the money ain’t all that bizzare. Fofana joined Leicester for £36.50m. Saliba joined us for £27m and going back on loan to his previous club. The fees make sense if you look at Fofana who is now even more expensive according to Transfermarkt. That we’ve managed to make a mess out of a top class CB talent is on us. How does he go on loan and he gets awards if he is that atrocious? Arteta doesn’t think he’s good enough to face Dundalk though. It’s on us. Player is good.

  3. raptora

    We could get both Anguissa (Bissouma) and Shonjo Shelvey. Heard he has them Xhaka long passes in his locker. He’ll be there for us during AFCON.

  4. salparadisenyc

    Saliba’s a very weird one on many fronts, taps into the murkiness. Kind of situation that can really only happen at Arsenal at moment.

    With that history do think club needs to invest in first choice CB to replace Luiz regardless of what ever transpires w/ Saliba. A leader capable of playing out of the back without shitting themselves at first sight of danger, ready to go day 1.

  5. englandsbest


    For me, missing out on Europa Cup is not a big loss. On the contrary, I see it as a big opportunity, a chance to focus, undistracted, on PL and FA Cup. Yes, I know it brings in a few million quid, but how much good did twenty years of EL money do us?

    Qualification for EL was the minimum requirement Kroenke placed on Wenger’s shoulders. For financial reasons. We used to mock Wenger for making 2nd, 3rd,4th in PL into some kind of trophy. Quite rightly so at the end when we were unlikely to get beyond the last 16.

    Now we have a manager whose aim and determination.is to return Arsenal to the elite. And by ‘elite’ he means a Club which consistently competes for the major prizes, and fairly frequently wins one.

  6. Marko

    And he hasn’t been given a kick even against chumps like Dundalk. While the less fancied Fofana stars for Leicester in a Cup win/top 4 contending season.

    Who’s fault is that. Mind boggling stuff when you consider how fancied he is yet dumbass goes with Mustafi for 6 months and saves Holding from a loan to Newcastle

  7. WengerEagle


    Not saying that Saliba is crap or that it was an ill-thought out move.

    It is just pretty much unprecedented to pay 27m for a CB (Most we have ever paid besides Mustafi) and to not get any use out of him or return or even PLAY him.

    Huge fucks up all round and now rumblings that we will look to sell him on which would prove that Arteta has no belief in him.

  8. Marc


    “Yes, I know it brings in a few million quid, but how much good did twenty years of EL money do us?”

    Er it stopped us losing even more money than we’ve lost for the last 5 odd seasons – it’s staggering the number of fans who will one minute talk about not being in Europe as a bonus and then list off a long expensive shopping list of players we need.

  9. Marko

    Now we have a manager whose aim and determination.is to return Arsenal to the elite. And by ‘elite’ he means a Club which consistently competes for the major prizes, and fairly frequently wins one.

    Yep sure

  10. Marc


    Saliba is a talent prior to Arteta’s introduction and the following cluster fuck the only argument was whether he was identified by Mislintat or elsewhere.

    Selling him would be a disaster and damage the club for years if not decades.

  11. Marc


    If you took a neutral and showed him that paragraph vs “Arteta’s a plant by the Spud’s to destroy the club” the neutral would struggle to know which one was true.

  12. andy1886

    EB – Make that the CL, not EL for 20 years.

    It’s funny because we were always told that we needed CL football to attract the best players. I guess that you think that we can now settle for even more mediocre ones because the genius that is MA will coach them to greatness?

  13. Leedsgunner

    AMN wants to play in the middle of the park and we need a partner for Partey there, would it be a disaster if we trialled in there during the preseason see how he does? Or for that matter see how Willock does there in preseason?

    If it works we will have saved ourself a tidy bundle that we can reinvest to for a first choice RB. I would love to see a RB dynamo cast in the same way as Tierney for instance. For me along with the midfield, rejuvenating our RB and LB (to provide cover for Tierney) is a must!

  14. raptora

    “Now we have a manager whose aim and determination.is to return Arsenal to the elite.”

    Gary Neville also wanted to win trophies with Valencia.

  15. WengerEagle


    Yep and funny enough that pushes back against Pedro’s Arteta being ‘elite’ with youngsters theory.

    Out of Saka, ESR, Willock, Martinelli, Nketiah, Nelson, Saliba and Guendouzi only 2 have developed their game under him.

    2 out of 8 of the bunch, not exactly Dortmund or Leipzig esque now, is it?

  16. raptora

    So sad we haven’t been a relevant team for a while. Ousmane Dembele has 1 year left in his contract with Barcelona. He has Arsenal written all over him. Sad.

  17. raptora

    You can add Maitland-Niles to the bunch. He used him to win the FAC and Community shield, then declined offers for him, then stopped playing him, then loaned him. Now no one has talked to him about wtf are we going to do with him. Top class managing.

  18. WengerEagle

    I wouldn’t want Dembele.

    Still has brilliant talent but far too flaky and injury-prone.

    Has made just 54 La Liga starts in 4 seasons out of a possible 152. Combine that with question marks over his discipline and being on monster wages and it is a bullet to be dodged.

  19. Ishola70

    tbf Raptora you could have just said FA Cup rather than add the Community Shield in there in regards Arteta.

    It just emboldens those that have the great belief in Arteta.

    They will now give you two reasons to keep Arteta indefinitely.

    1. He’s an FA Cup winner

    2. He’s a Community Shield winner.

  20. Almuniasaynomore

    Bob N16
    Apologies for the late reply,wasn’t ignoring you. I think it goes beyond simply stating that criticism of Arteta is too much or too repetitive. Too be clear from the off, I’m of the opinion that Arteta should be gone,have been pretty biased against him I’d say seeing as I didn’t want him in the first place. But I have always listened to arguments which suggest I’m wrong. It doesn’t help if we divide us into 2 camps(in/out). I’d prefer to look at it as a very long spectrum with Arteta in/Arteta out at either end. We are all placed on that spectrum somewhere (and it really doesn’t matter where on the spectrum any person is). We then watch,read,listen and develop our perspectives/thoughts/views through this process, moving up and down the spectrum. Football is a very fluid world,we learn new things every day, see things which alter previous viewpoints,meet people who influence us in ways we never thought possible. All of that is to be encouraged in my opinion Bob,the idea that changing your mind is weak or fickle needs to be challenged. For me true strength of character is recognising misjudgment and correcting them. There are a few posters who don’t recognise that constantly reviewing and analysing is essential. The idea that I’m Arteta out, you’re Arteta in, that’s it so stfu,no more needs to be said,I’ve heard it all before ,is the antithesis to any intelligent debate,because it fails to recognize the possibility of changing viewpoints. As I said previously it is only those who don’t want debate that we should be wary of. Anyway Bob,not that my opinion matters to you,,but I have always found your posts to indicate someone who is quite open minded so I hope you recognize I wasnt implying anything about you here.

  21. Marc


    It’s not just only 2 have progressed it’s how others have regressed, there’s also a major question of how good would Saka be under a real coach? Arteta hasn’t had time to fuck ESR up yet but wait and see.

  22. Marc

    “They will now give you two reasons to keep Arteta indefinitely.

    1. He’s an FA Cup winner

    2. He’s a Community Shield winner.”

    Well Harry Redknapp and Roberto Martinez also won the FA Cup and I wouldn’t let them in the ground to watch a match let alone manage the club.

  23. Leedsgunner


    “I wouldn’t want Dembele.
    Still has brilliant talent but far too flaky and injury-prone.”

    I think he would be luxury signing… but before he went to Barca, he dovetailed marvellously for BvB and her strikers.

    Who was the main beneficiary of Ousmene Dembele’s service? One Pierre Emerick Aubameyang. It’s as if they were communicating telepathically.

  24. Marc


    Well said – still waiting for someone to put up a coherent viewpoint explaining that Arteta isn’t a terrible terrible manager and human being.

  25. raptora

    Not arguing but we know some players just don’t work there. Ibra being the most known one. Cesc another one who never became an important figure although he did okay there and it was always going to be hard with the midfield they had at the time. Coutinho is another one. Hleb too who was a fantastic player to watch when he was playing for us.

    Injury prone, yes. That’s an issue. But that he didn’t work there doesn’t mean he doesn’t have what it takes.

  26. Ishola70

    Radio Raheem
    “Sad to see our best midfielder leave for a reported paltry £17m.”

    That’s how good our midfield as a whole has been for many seasons.

    Very sad indictment and indication.

  27. Marc


    Between £6 and £10 million below what was bid for him 18 months ago so Arteta has cost the club somewhere between £13.8 million and £17.8 million in lost fees and wages.

    And that’s only on Xhaka – wait for the same thing to play out on AMN.

  28. Ishola70

    Still no Arteta believers have stated on here that a serious top four challenge next season is an absolute necessity for him to remain in charge.

    Come on put your money where your mouth is.

    Maybe they don’t believe themselves.

  29. Marc


    They’re too busy preparing excuses: Current favourites are:

    1) He didn’t get a proper pre season because of the Euro’s.

    2) The Kroenke’s didn’t back him in the transfer window.

    3) The buyout rumours were a major distraction.

    4) The ball was too round.

  30. Karsa

    Still no Arteta believers have stated on here that a serious top four challenge next season is an absolute necessity for him to remain in charge.

    I’m hardly an Arteta believer, but I agree that a serious top 4 challenge is required as a minimum next season.

  31. Ishola70

    lol just read a report on Xhaka from an Italian source.

    They are warning their readers not to think of putting Xhaka in a fantasy football Serie A side next season.

    Don’t even think about it all you Fantasy coaches.they state. Very low numbers for fantasy football.

    If only they had “progressive” passing for fantasy football.

  32. Bob N16

    Almunia, thanks for the response. I certainly wasn’t taking it personally!

    You’re right about ‘the Arteta spectrum’, I guess I was just I was pointing out that the ‘ Arteta is a useless b*stard’ end of the spectrum tend to post most frequently on here and their repetitiveness means I have to scroll down more than I’d wish!

    The idea that any Arsenal supporter can be happy with last season is ridiculous. The players coming in this window should be seen as Arsenal players not Arteta’s. As I quite possible a new manager is quite likely mid season if we start badly and the squad will have to play a tune for the new man. My lack of confidence in Edu is similar to my confidence in Arteta.

    However, let’s hope Arteta has learnt a lot from last season and the Kroenkes give Edu enough of a budget to bring in the players we all know we need.

  33. Terraloon


    Er it stopped us losing even more money than we’ve lost for the last 5 odd seasons – it’s staggering the number of fans who will one minute talk about not being in Europe as a bonus and then list off a long expensive shopping list of players we need.

    I know that you and I sing very much( from the same hymn sheet on this.

    I can’t immediately find the article but impact from not even getting EL doesn’t result in just a few million but when you factor in lost match day revenue, penalties in commercial contracts and above all of course payments from UEFA it is more like £20 million than just a few million

    Alas it doesn’t just stop there as it will impact in the clubs co efficient which means less money the next time Arsenal qualify and potentially if the club achieves CL qualification that reduced co efficient could mean being in pot 3 for the draw which then provides a more difficult route out of the group stage.

  34. China1

    If we had sold AMN for 20m last summer that would have covered 2/3 of the income we have lost from failing to qualify for the EL this season…

  35. Tom

    Surely not another Saliba/Fofana debate.
    I thought it was established Saliba wasn’t ready and Fofana proved it by costing Leicester the top four( Martin Keown said so)

    If only Leicester had played Evans and Soyuncu as the preferred CB pairing they would’ve made top for no doubt. Never mind both players missed 23 PL games with various injuries and Fofana was awarded Leicester’s young player of the season by their fans, but what do these Leicester fans know anyways?

    The only confusing part for me is that if Fofana cost them the top four, while also at the same time Rodgers bottled the top four, then how do I connect the two to make sense of it, but I’m sure someone will come along shortly to set me straight.

  36. Ishola70

    “Don’t you get a load of points for a player falling over?”

    Ah tactical excellence and nous from our soon to be exited Granit.

    As you recently noted if in danger of losing out to an opponent or being outpaced just simply fall over onto the ball.

    Simple yet genuis.

    This should be more recognised in fantasy football.

  37. Marc

    5) The corner flags were in the wrong places

    6) the white lines were too wide.

    7) Having fans in the ground is unfair.

    8) points should be awarded for sauce not winning.

    9) Other teams were red shirts and it incites the opposition.

    10) He’s never done the job before.

  38. Ishola70

    Oscar Damiani is not that impressed either as well as fantasy football afficiados.

    The former Juventus and Napoli winger who is now 70 years old and is coincidentally also football agent of our very own Aubameyang stated in the Italian Sky studios that he could beat Xhaka in a 100m sprint.

  39. China1

    Marc you don’t understand about the EL

    It was a distraction. They paid us 30m to play half of the matches against Dundalk and Swiss teams. We had to beast our best players to overcome them.

    It’s much better that we don’t have that 30m, that we don’t have a back door into the CL, that we don’t need to send a B team to dispatch pub teams once a week. Because this means we will be totally fit and fresh and at our best all season. Then we will qualify for the CL and we will have to play 2 games a week again but against quality times this time round. But we will be totally ready for that, I’m telling you. We weren’t good enough to beat villareal but after a year out of the EL we’ll be ready for Real Madrid.

    Let’s goooo!

  40. Marc


    It’s not just penalties in existing commercial contracts it puts is in a weak position when negotiating the next round.

  41. Dissenter

    I believe there are contracts that stipulate that clubs not in European football have top PAY MORE for certain players.
    That’s how small clubs prevent their players from going to other small clubs who are deemed as relegation rivals etc.

    Arsenal under Arteta will be paying that losers premium this summer, first time since 1996.

  42. Marc

    14) Arsenal bought the wrong kind of cones and Arteta can’t put them out properly

    15) Gunnersauraus was sacked

    16) After being sacked Gunnersauraus ate Doris the Tea Lady and she was in charge of player motivation

  43. Foxy

    If we have deep lying midfielders who can actually turn, run and progressively pass the ball then there will be less pressure on Holding, Gabriel etc to progress the ball. What we have seen all too often is Gabriel passing the ball to Xhaka in good space centre pitch. Xhaka then stops and passes it straight back to Gabriel who then has no option but to try something different. But just now and again Xhaka does something different and gives Partey a hospital pass so Partey can show how good a player he is when closed down!!

  44. Terraloon


    That’s a good point and unlike some clubs who have 15 or so year deals Arsenals 5 year deal is just about to enter its 3rd year.

  45. Ishola70


    “If we have deep lying midfielders who can actually turn, run and progressively pass the ball then there will be less pressure”

    The notion of deep lying midfielder at Arsenal is now associated with no pace.

    That really wasn’t what it was meant to be about.

    You were placed deep lying midfielder because you had the footballing intelligence to see the game before you spread out not because you were snail like.

  46. NORG

    21/ Arteta is really an alien. Underneath that glossy exterior is a reptilian type of being. He doesnt have a forked tongue but as they used to say in Western ‘ he speaks with forked tongue’.

  47. Foxy

    Loss of corporate box income with no mid week euro matches could also hit hard. Only positive spin is we are not quite Blackburn yet who set the bar for incompetence

  48. Marc


    Which means if Arteta sorry when Arteta cocks up this season we’re going into the 4th year when we’d unusually start looking at options or re negotiating.

    We really are a fucking shambles.

  49. Marc


    ST’s have gone down from 26 matches to 21 – in my previous role the company had club level tickets at Wembley and we used to take clients to matches. Midweek matches were always easier to get clients on board with than weekend matches unless it was something major.

  50. Foxy

    Marc exactly my point back it the early emirates exciting years the company I worked for in London my company had a box for entertaining customers and evening games were the best and every one wanted to be there.

  51. Almuniasaynomore

    Bob N16
    I understand your viewpoint very much. CC and others have also expressed the view that if you’re going to give Arteta the window/start of season then you must reserve judgement til that time has elapsed. That’s pure logic and totally acceptable. Others will say that they don’t want him having the window,don’t trust him or Edu and are screaming to get them out now before they waste our precious resources as sacking them after that will be to no avail if they have bloated our squad with overpaid rubbish. That is a strong case too. You are trying to see the best of things by suggesting, rightly, that if we get in the right players,well even if Arteta messes up, the pieces will be there for the next manager to bring us forward. I like that idea but there’s a voice whispering ‘what if Arteta’s pieces are rubbish,or worse,he let’s some good pieces go?’. The damage is irrevocable then. I move up and down that spectrum all the time Bob, but I’ll tell you what I do enjoy, instead of skipping the posts I read them all,especially the posters I find it difficult to agree with,and just sometimes I learn something from them. I’m proud of that then because I’m know that by accepting an opposing view I’m not as bigoted as I thought I was and I’m pretty stubborn really! Pleasure chatting with you.

  52. Bob N16

    Almunia, Damage not irrevocable otherwise agree with you.

    I do read most posts although there are a couple of posters, who aren’t worth naming, who I personally find distasteful. Agree it’s worthwhile to be aware of all views although sometimes the drip, drip, drip of negativity makes me speed read!

  53. Sid

    So dog-gone willin’, so kiss him
    (I wanna see you kiss him, wanna see you kiss him)
    Go on and kiss him goodbye, now
    Na na na na, hey hey, goodbye
    Na na na na, na na na na, hey hey, goodbye

  54. Dissenter

    We’ve been in an inexorable decline over the last decade, making mistake after mistake.

    …and all you’re complaining about is the “negativity” of certain posters?

  55. Dissenter

    Xhaka showed some integrity compared with players like Ozil and Mustafi.

    One of the by products of the low fee Arsenal accepted is that Xhaka left money on the table.

  56. Valentin

    It is becoming embarrassing for Barcelona.
    Wijnaldum was supposed to sign for Barcelona, but PSG offered a few millions more and he decided to join them.

    Now Depay. Depay was announced to sign this Thursday for Barcelona, but Juventus has offered 3 millions more per year, and suddenly the Juventus project interest him more than Barcelona.

    How the mighty have called, Barcelona cannot even compete for Bosman players who were ready to join them.