Say what? NO TRANSFER RUMOURS?
Completely disagreeable I’m afraid.
The big story from an Arsenal perspective is that Kieran Tierney is out of the team for Scotland. I really wish he hadn’t made the Euros, I do worry about him for next season. So important, yet so prone to 6 weeks out. That’s why Arsenal needs to really think about who they sign as his understudy. I remember we wasted literally years in the hope Abou Diaby would be able to manage a whole season in the first team, we never signed a good backup, and we paid for it. The back-up position for left back needs to be well thought out. If you sign someone young and Tierney stays fit, you’ve ruined their career. If you sign someone too old and Tierney gets injured, you might be in trouble. If you keep Kola, it’s trouble.
Overall, it’s going to be interesting to see how the pacing of the summer goes. How many years did we spend cursing the Euros for fucking up our transfer business? This season, we have the double whammy with the Copa America in the mixer as well. The problem for Arsenal is that the slower the business, the more painful it’ll be integrating 5+ new players to the complex ideas on offer under Arteta. I will not lie, I’m a little worried that our business doesn’t feel warm and it’s mid-June.
Part of the pacing could be solved by signing players who already understand these systems. Ben White would make sense because Potter’s approach is very similar to the one Arteta is implementing. Signing players goes beyond just an athletic profile / how tight their control is, you also need to find players that are tactically intelligent so they can absorb information fast. I was in Austin a few months ago talking to a drummer at one of their famous studios (Arlyn), he said to make it there, you need to be able to lay down a perfect beat from sheet music instantly, or you don’t get work again (turns out, I will not be working in music). You need similar mind sponges in football. The fixtures come at you so fast, if you’re not a fast learner, you are in trouble especially where the game is heading.
There continues to be a pattern emerging with the sort of attacking player we’re looking at. Nabil Fekir is the latest bang-bang creative midfielder being linked. I’m not sure if the story is true, but Charles Watts reckons he’s been on the list in the past. I kind of hope he’s not on the list, 27 years old, with an underlying injury that would most certainly come out of hibernation if he played for us. That said, I like how he plays. Arsenal has been a lethargic team for a long while. We need some of that Bielsa/murderball in the starting 11.
There are still quite a few nothing rumours in the air. Locatelli for £40m is one of them. The craziest thing that happened today was Granit Xhaka dying his hair bleach blonde. I quite like it. New hair who dis type of moment. Whatever floats your boat.
ONE SURPRISE YOU MIGHT like is this delightful podcast I recorded with the very impressive Mike McDonald. I basically listen to him talk about midfielders for an hour. Tune in, it is WORTH it.
Tomorrow, Johnny and I will have a crack at a Livestream. Will let you know how it works out. I had a go today and couldn’t do the technology part.
ENJOY THE PODCAST!