Well, Arsenal transfer rumours took a rocket ship to the moon with stories emerging about a potential summer blockbuster of JAMES MADDISON TO THE GOONERS.
It’s a weird one, right?
It tells you a few things.
Firstly, there’s clearly a big pot of money on offer if we’re considering an English creator as part of the business this summer.
Secondly, if there’s a pattern emerging, it appears to be that we’re fixing the spine of the squad with Premier League ready players.
I’m at the point with Arsenal that I wonder about the viability of some of this ambition, even if we do have the money on offer. Arsenal is clearly massive, but Maddison just feels a little bit beyond where we are as a club right now?
Would it be a good signing? Clearly. The player scores, creates, and his injuries cost Leicester big time last season (we love signing players with injury records).
It just seems expensive. Like, all the bankruptcy in Europe and the extent of our scouting curiosity is James Maddison and Ben White? I don’t think you can argue the quality, you might argue if you could do more with that money. It feels like Arsenal are attempting the Liverpool Allisson/VVD before we’re in good enough shape to move there.
Again, I sound like a brat. OF COURSE I would take those two players. They instantly move Arsenal up a level. It just feels odd that 18 months ago Arsenal leadership was sending emails to turn off the computers at the mains, now we’re about to spend £100m on two players?
Some apology tour from Josh K.
Whatever we do will be a hybrid model. We’ve bid £15m for Sambi Lokonga. Ornstein confirming it. This is an Arsenal of old move. A transfer that would reflect the moment. A player that Arsene would have signed. He’ll be for the squad-depth like Saliba, but the exact sort of player you want to be able to call on when the inevitable injuries come. A season or twos worth of experience, correct technical and athletic profile, and a look-a-like for a more senior player. He would represent the sort of value we need to be sourcing.
The Arsenal fixture list dropped.
- Brentford (a)
- Chelsea (h)
- Man City (a)
- Norwich (h)
- Burnley (a)
- Spurs (h)
3 tough games and 3 games we should be taking maximum points from. City is the one I worry about most if I’m honest. We caved to them last season and showed too much respect. The others are all winnable.
The bigger point of interest is that most of our big games in the first half of the season are away games. Only Chelsea and Spurs are going to be home games. That works for the pattern our season will likely take > Lots of change = choppy start.
The key to the first three months is to not shit the bed like we did last season. If we can get off to a confident start and stay firmly in the pack, we’ll be better from January onwards, without doubt. If we soil ourselves like last year, it’s Nuno time in January.
The other big watch-out for Edu is those first 10 games need to be good. He can’t be pissing around with deadline day specials like he did last season. We need to have settled squad as close to the start of preseason as possible. We’re at June 16th and there’s next to nothing rock solid brewing in the market that we know of… chop, chop Edu.
Aston Villa, according to The Athletic, have been hounding Arsenal for Emile Smith Rowe. They dropped £25m in the old fax machine and we said no. Great that other clubs covet our young players, a bit of a worry that Villa is bullying us. This is a balls-out move from them, they are trying to tell the world they are on the up and want to be recognized as a top club, they are showing Grealish they want to compete, and they are giving their fans (and some of my pals) banter ammo. Breathtaking cheek, but the audacity has to be saluted.
Right, that’s me done. I recorded a second podcast yesterday with Johnny, we talked about Neves, Saliba, and Lokonga. It was a good listen. If you want a cracking read, check out Adam’s debut piece where he deep dives into some data to uncover some very interesting insights.