ANOTHER CONTRACT SIGNED + HOW WELL IS EVERYONE ELSE SELLING?

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Another promising young player has committed their future to the new Arsenal FC. Kido Taylor Hart will drop a full season with the U23s this season whilst also being given time to train with the first team.

This is a coup for the system Per Mertesacker is setting up and it once again speaks to the new vision of Arsenal.

Young players, great coaching, fast-track to the first team if they do well. This is how clubs in our situation should be operating.

Granit Xhaka, as it currently stands, will be an Arsenal player heading into the new season. The Swiss was attracting interest from Roma, they apparently bid £10m for him, we turned it down because that level of compensation would have impacted our ability to move on other players this window.

I was kind of hoping the player moved on this summer, Xhaka feels like a hangover from the dark years of Arsene Wenger. I think that sentiment is shared by a lot of the fans. We all wanted to see a Locatelli at the carpet.

Not Arteta. He likes the player. This summer was never supposed to be about selling Xhaka, but the club was willing to do so if a proper fee was sent out way. £10m is no good if you need £40m to replace. We’re trying to move on a number of additional positions that need more attention than the one he normally occupies. If you take £30m out of the pot, that’s less money for a right-back, keeper, and CAM position. However you want to cut it, Xhaka was not a massive problem last season. When he dropped into defence, we weren’t as good.

Also worth noting that whoever we put there was going to be a problem. United is being linked hard with Reuben Neves, a player that the Arsenal fanbase went nuts over… but not United fans, who seem to be very excited about him. The role Xhaka plays is unsexy, but if he plays like he did last season, I don’t think we’ll be in bad shape, especially if he’s next to Thomas Partey.

The longer-term view is the one I’m paying attention to. Miguel Azeez has bulked up over the summer and he looks like he’ll be competing for the first team very soon, he scored another screamer over the weekend. Then you have Lokonga, one of the most exciting midfield prospects in Europe, who clearly can do a lot of things Xhaka can do and more. Don’t be shocked if our midfield pairing is Lokonga and Partey by January. The Belgian is not here as bench fodder.

The thing that really needs to kick up a gear in the next few weeks is transfer exits. People keep on saying that we’re not being ‘ruthless’ enough and I really don’t think they understand what they are talking about. What does get ruthless about selling mean? Like… force sales? To clubs with no money? Annul contracts?

So far this window, total sales from bigger clubs.

  • Chelsea: 4 players
  • United: 0 players
  • Spurs: 2 players
  • Everton: 1 players
  • Leicester: 0 players
  • West Ham: 1 player
  • Manchester City: 3 players

How about some of the smaller clubs?

  • Aston Villa: 1 player
  • Palaces: 0 players
  • Sheffield United: 0 players
  • Newcastle United: 0 players

Source: Transfermarkt

Notice the pattern? Selling players isn’t about being ruthless unless you think we should do another round of selling players for painfully low fees or we should just give free transfers to players the club thinks have value.

The market is dead. There’s a nasty combination of no one having money and no one wanting to sell the crown jewels to get the market going. If the best ‘selling’ club in the Premier League is CFC with a whopping total of 4 exits, then you know the market is totally fucked.

I suspect another consideration at play is a ‘it’ll brighten up next year’ mindset. Base premise of a portfolio manager, buy low, sell high. Why should Arsenal sell Hector Bellerin for peanuts at 26 years old? If the market bounces back next summer, he might have more than one club vying for his services.

What we’re waiting to find out is if clubs will start to show their hand a little more in the coming weeks. No good heading into a new season with no recruits. Clubs need to have players in the door. Ainsley, Reiss, Willock, and Eddie are very capable young players that would add value to plenty of squads. I expect (hope) there to be moves for them coming soon.

Lacazette, who seems open to a move, would add goals to any squad in Italy, France or Spain. Clubs will need goals and might move on him. Cal Chamber, Cedric, and Hector would be decent for certain sides.

These next two weeks are going to have to perk up for everyone because a market only works if there are lots of participants.

One thing to keep in mind: Arsenal won’t go into the season without a CAM or a back-up keeper. I think moves on a right back and a striker are going to be provisioned on exits.

So… plenty of summer still to come, just don’t blame the sluggishness all on Arsenal. I’m more than willing to go at the club, but you can’t look at a lack of movement without looking at the market as a whole… because a market and its health is predicated on active participants. You can’t sell if no one wants to buy.

Right, that’s me done, see you in the comments.

P.S. I hope that picture of Thomas Partey out in Paddington was from yesterday, because he wasn’t limping around, and that is good news.

434 Responses to “ANOTHER CONTRACT SIGNED + HOW WELL IS EVERYONE ELSE SELLING?”

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  1. Raulishuss

    Pierre ode plays more like a cm than an attacker. He’s someone than withdraws back to allow one cm to move into advanced area. You hit the nail on odes weakness but should we ewpect him to improve? I definately hope so

  2. Raulishuss

    Tee
    thats legrove in a nutshell. Empty vessels and all. A place where some like CG is been looked at like a voice of reason and people want to fly with any negative around

  3. Mee

    Ode retreats to allow one cm move into an advanced area. Xhaka retreats to allow the fullback to move into an advanced area. Welcome to Arsenal

  4. Kaz

    Arteta will be sacked. We can all see it.

    Only thing left is the concern of who the replacement will be..

    The Hale Enders are staying because they love Arsenal, not Arteta, it’s logical to work out you just have to ignore the PR merchants.

    Xhaka is the worst midfielder we’ve had in decades to get over 200 appearances.

    Arteta wanted to extend Mustafi’s contract too. Every smart fan knows he isn’t to be trusted.

  5. China1

    Also I’d rather be an empty vessel that has standards for the club and expects better than be a moist towel that feels praying and wishfully imagining that all is and has been well

    It’s currently looking highly likely that the only difference to our starting 11 since last season is White. This after we likely spend over 100m.

    Top 4 here we come amirite?

  6. China1

    Don’t say last season wasn’t good mate, it’s negative. Don’t need any of that round here, more positive please

  7. Gonsterous

    The only people lying and being dishonest were the ones selling arteta as the generational one who would come in and improve the team
    20 months later, apparently he doesn’t have the squad to play artetaball (whatever that is)

    Would be nice if pedro and co for once explained exactly what arteta ball is. Clarity, it’s a wonderful thing.

  8. Raulishuss

    It was wenger then emery then arteta. Don’t you see a pattern? Or you’re just jealous pedro fancies this one?

  9. Mee

    Artetaball involves a number of players with deficiencies playing in a set up where there are safe spaces so they can be protected from the intensity and aggression of opposing players. These players are the coaches loved ones and will be kept or signed by any means necessary so the coach can demonstrate his tactical acumen through the ingenious design of safe spaces within the team’s play including during the match. Win or lose is immaterial to Artetaball. Spontaneity is outlawed and any form of individual expression on or off the pitch punished heavily.

  10. Sid

    Where i come from guys like Diet Pep and Xhakalson, are pulled out of bed at dawn, blindfolded and stripped naked, the rest of the guys all get their rifles then
    Everyone is off to hunt while those 2 spend the day entertaining each other

  11. China1

    Wenger lost me when he lost the plot and started badly declining

    So yes I see a very clear pattern that I run out of patience with managers who I think should be doing better than they are.

    Ask 2010 me what I thought about wenger when we won nothing and I’d have said only superlatives

    Respect is earned, not provided irrespective of what’s happening in front of your eyes.

  12. Gonsterous

    Sid

    I need more of that fan fiction you’ve been trying to get published. It’s sounds raunchy and saucy ^^

    Mee

    Please put that in layman’s term, 🙂

  13. Rich

    Odegaard is a brilliant young player, he has qualities we desperately need, in an area of the pitch we desperately need them

    He improves us in the immediate, and will cross over into an elite attacking midfielder within 12-24 months

    He’d be our best signing since Alexis in 2014

  14. Globalgunner

    Rich lay off the herbs mate. Odegaard wont score even 5 goals a season and assist with maybe another 10. Not exactly moving the needle forward. Im not against signing him but I dont want another docile shot shy midfielder looking pretty but adding little. He`s not even as good as Hleb who was another that always flattered to deceive

  15. Sid

    Can Odegaard poke and probe or will he glide in and out sweating without getting firm?
    He needs to prove his stamina, last and last, deliver the excitment, protect his body

  16. China1

    Ode can do well tho he does need to improve

    He has it in him. Prime wenger would’ve made a monster out of him but we’ll see

  17. Kaz

    Rich go look up Odegaards stats. The only time he broke a GA of over 10 was in the Dutch League.

    You really said he’ll be as good as Alexis who got a GA of over 30?

    😂😂😂😂😂

  18. Positive pete

    People on here talking about Odegaard as if he’s inthe bag? Don’t think so.Not at Madrid’s quote.Plus you got to factor in that we’re less than 2 wks to kick off & not a single sign that we’re anyway close to sorting out the midfielders we need.Indeed not only that but we still have Hacker & Bellend at the club.As China pointed out the only difference to last season is WHITE.A massive con job from the club.

  19. Matt

    I’ve said it before Rich, ever admire your optimism, but you are in for a rude awakening with Odegaard if we sign him.

    There is not more to come, we have seen everything he can offer already. Is he an improvement on what we have, yes. Is he enough to help us get top 4, absolutely not. And if that’s the aim, which it must be, what is the point of the signing!?

  20. Rich

    Kaz

    I said he’d be our best signing since Alexis, I never said he’d be better than Alexis

    I don’t see Odegaard ever scoring anywhere near 30 goals, even though I think he’ll become a midfielder who hits roughly double figures in both goals + assists

    Alexis was an energiser bunny, he’d regularly lose the ball 4-5 a game, but nobody would care when he was consistently producing match winning moments

    Odegaard is an entirely different style of player, he’s much more controlled and measured, Odegaard is a midfielder, and Alexis is a forward

    I wasn’t making a comparison between the players, but on the quality of the signings, and their overall impact on the team

    But just for some balance, the most amount of goals Alexis had scored in a season at 22, was 12

    The most he’d scored in a season before he was 24/25 was 15

    Young players tend to improve a lot between the ages of 22-25, look at Grealish, Maddison, Bruno Fernandes

    De Bruyne was dumped by Chelsea at 22

    Providing he stays fit and chooses his next move wisely, Odegaard will develop into a much better player than Maddison IMO, and would be a much better signing for Arsenal

  21. Positive pete

    Actually the more I think about it.If there is anyone through the door before kick off it will be Aouar at a bargain knock down price of circa £20 million.Wait & see.

  22. DigitalBob

    Any signing that improves the first team I’m in favour of and Odegaard does improve us despite his limitations athletically.

    I’d also prefer Maddison or Aouar but as the days go on its clear our only real options are Odegaard or the likes of Coutinho/Pjanic on loan.

  23. Rich

    Kaz

    David Silva signed for City in 2010, he scored 4 PL goals that season, at the age of 24/25

    He never scored more than 12 in a PL season, his next best was 9

    You think City fans didn’t see that as an excellent piece of business?

    Odegaard is a brilliant player who links our attack with the rest of the team, signing Odegaard 22 + Smith Rowe 20, both down on 5yr contracts in the same summer, would set us up very nicely for the medium term at least

    Both players with massive potential

  24. Pierre

    Unless Odegaard discovers half a yard of pace and a few tricks to deceive defenders then I’m afraid we may have seen the best of him already .

    A couple of years ago he was a player ahead of his time, now time has caught him up and is in danger of leaving him behind .

    The one person who knows if he is good enough to take players on and beat them is the player himself .

    There is a reason that players like xhaka and Willian won’t attempt to go past a player, they know they have neither the skill, the quick feet , the deception or the pace to beat the opposition player , so they play safe, and that is where we are with Odegaard…

  25. andy1886

    Rich, signing player unproven on big wages and long contracts would be daft. IF we did sign Ode I’d prefer a 3 year deal + an option for an extra year (our option, not his). We should see within a couple of years if we want to rengotiate or not. It’s not the same as ESR who will probably be on half the wages and has a connection to Arsenal unlike Ode who wouldn’t even be with us if Madrid actually wanted him.

  26. Elmo

    9 years of Xhaka. 2016-2025. Two pay rises along the way.

    I was reluctantly accepting of him staying, as we clearly don’t have the money to upgrade CM, and desperately need an AM, but I don’t understand the 2 year contract extension or pay rise. We already have him contracted until he’s 31; why extend that to 33? He was willing to take a £19k per week cut to his post-tax pay to move to Roma; why are we increasing his salary, which we’re committing to paying well into his 30s? I just don’t get it. He has a market value of £12m at 29. We’re not ‘protecting our investment’ by giving him an extra 2 years.

  27. raptora

    Aouar is a no-brainer like Fekir was 2 summers ago. Sevilla got a £40-50m player for £18m and he’s been great for them. Aouar is in a very similar situation. On the market for 1/3 of his real value. It’s a no-brainer and stupidity from us not to take the chance and run with it.

  28. Dissenter

    Pierre
    You have Ode just right
    He was physically ahead of his peers when he was the teen prodigy with a huge ego. Now they’ve caught up with him, the late bloomers have left him behind.
    He’s probably slower than Xhaka in a 60 meters dash and doesn’t have Xhaka’s range of passing.

  29. Rich

    Andy

    I wouldn’t call Odegaard unproven, he’s the Norwegian captain at 22 with 30 international caps

    He was the standout young player in La Liga in 2019/20, and the stand out young player in the Dutch league in 2018/19

    He’s at the age and level of experience where attacking midfielders usually start finding consistency, there’s absolutely no doubting his ability or mentality

    If we can pick him up for £35million and £100-£120k p/w, then we shouldn’t blink, he’s a player on the way up

  30. Dissenter

    ‘ He was the standout young player in La Liga in 2019/20, and the stand out young player in the Dutch league in 2018/19’

    That’s before time caught up with him He was physically ahead of his peers…now they’ve caught up.
    His dribbling is no better than most defenders in my opinion, he struggles to sort out his feet a lot.

  31. Dissenter

    Also I wouldn’t use the Eredivisie best young player to make a point.
    Joey Altidore scored 39 goals in t7 games for Alkmar and couldn’t find a chicken in a poultry when he came to the big leagues. I’ve lost count of the Chelsea academy that destroyed the dutch league.

  32. Foxy

    The premiership requires a whole different level of physicality to those leagues, we need to learn from the Ozil experience. Oordegard just looks like a boy amongst men and I don’t like how he wants to drift right all the time and cramp our play on that flank.

  33. Samesong

    Oh dear comparing Silva with Oden.

    The issue here is David Silva is unplayable on his day. And Silva is/was world class.

  34. TR7

    Ode is slow, can’t dribble and rarely scores. 35 years old Modric is trusted more by Real Madrid managers than Ode. Says it all really.

  35. Matt

    Looks like Partey is out for ‘at least a few weeks’.

    Mr Glass is a liability and looking to be another expensive dud signing. We don’t do well when we pay big money do we!!

  36. Marko

    That Xhaka deal is seemingly set to be announced any min now. That’s ruthless as they come from Mikel.

    On Odegaard again I say if you told me 18 months ago that we’d have Partey and Odegaard in our midfield I’d have called you crazy after how good he looked at Sociedad. The only issue I see with him is I don’t think we’ll truly get the best out of him under our current manager. And that’s pretty much it I think other than that he’s got great ability and potential

  37. raptora

    Martinelli with an unsaveable penalty. Weird that an Arsenal player can actually score from the spot. Saka and Miedema already missed in this Summer.

  38. shaun

    I definitely would not say ODE is a Priority as like most of the opinions above I don’t see him as being suited to the prem , he moves the ball well and at a good tempo but I don’t see him as being a real game changer .He can find a pass but does not seem to have the athletic profile to be able to beat a man and more and more in this league you need to be able to beat a man and find that killer pass as opposing teams love the press these days .Not being able to beat a man and physically hold them off is what in my opinion added to Ozils demise lol………………..lol one for Pierre to bite on.
    the problem with ODE is that Lego head would prioritise his position over ESR and for me that’s a big no no .For me ODE would be useful but not essential and I think the 50 million it would take to purchase him could really be better used else where in the team as I am all for fixing the spine especially if we have to endure another xhaka season and it’s not that I have an issue with Xhaka but a blind man can see he is unsuited to the prem . Retaining Xhaka for me unbalances the spine of the team .The Roma deal falling apart is probably the worst Arsenal news of the window for me

  39. Matt

    So with Partey out for a few weeks, what are the odds on a Xhaka/Elneny midfield for the first few games of the season? Anyone excited yet!?

  40. andy1886

    Diss, if it’s a 3+1 then we have four years if we take the option. By part way through year 2 we should be able to decide if we want to extend or sell in which case we have 2.5 years to do a deal. Imagine we sign him on big wages for five years and he stinks the place out from day one. We’d be left holdind the baby for another 4+ years on big money just like several other deals we could all mention.

  41. Dissenter

    Andy
    If we were making an opportunistic signing of a good player for say 7 million – the selling club was in. acute trouble;, then by all means do a 3 year deal.

    I just think a 35-40 million transfer needs more security or time to get it right 3 year deal means we are already on the cosh once that first year is over.

  42. DigitalBob

    Matt – One would hope Lokonga is ahead of Elneny in regards to stepping in while Partey is injured. We’ve seen what a Xhaka/Elneny midfield does for half a decade now and its not a pretty sight!

  43. andy1886

    Chelsea have a £85m bid for Lukaku rejected. Whether you agree with the choice or not there’s no denying they quickly identify any weaknesses and look to find a solution.

  44. Rich

    Maddison isn’t exactly quick

    Maddison £70million + £200k p/w on a 5yr deal = £122 million, at the end of his contract he’ll be 29

    Odegaard £35million + £110k p/w on a 5yr deal, = £63,600,000, at the end of his contract he’ll be 27

    If there’s the option of both, we’ll definitely go for Odegaard

    Aouar £25million + £100k p/w on a 5yr deal, = £51million, at the end of his contract he’ll be 28

    Forget net spend, it doesn’t mean anything, we could potentially sign both Odegaard + Aouar for 5 years, for less than the price it would cost us to sign Maddison for 5 years

  45. Dissenter

    Xhaka is the type dm-layer you can allow to run down his deal to leave for nothing.

    If he’s worth only £10 million after his best season ever and a good Euros at the age of 28 y/o, , why extend to “protect his value”?

    This is just Mikel pulling rank.

  46. Matt

    DigitalBob

    Yep, we have all seen it time and time again, but are you confident we wont be seeing it against Brentford next Friday!?

    Rich

    Maddison may not be quick either, but he scores goals and he assists. He has a great delivery and he generally has more about his game than Odegaard. How anyone can prefer Odegaard over Maddison is beyond me.

  47. andy1886

    Diss, as I said I’d go for a 3+1 where we can activate the extra year if we need to. If Ode hasn’t stepped up by end of year 2 he probably never will do. We’re still waiting to see the £72m Pepe we signed. Let’s be honest, if he does prove as good as Rich believes there isn’t a hope in hell that he’ll stay for 5 years, he’ll be off to the first really big club that shows any interest.

  48. Dissenter

    Madison is quick with the ball and his fits is super fast, fast enough to put most people on their arse.
    Madison can dribble his way out of trouble and sprint past people, Ode struggles to do that,

    Even when he was in Vittese , he didn’t dribble much.

  49. Leedsgunner

    “Familiarity breeds contempt”

    Was it Shakespeare that coined that phrase?

    Odegaard, I suspect are being discounted in the minds of some here because we’ve had him on loan already because of that we think we know him… but I think that’s a bit premature.

    If we have a chance of signing Odegaard permanently I think we should seriously think about it…

    Although to be honest, what puts me off Odegaard is the premium price and more importantly the insistence of Real Madrid to add a buy back clause in there.

    I would argue if we are going to be paying top money for a player like that he should come to us unfettered. If by per chance Odegaard does fantastically well, I want us to be able to deal with him as we wish — not give Real Madrid the power to take him back to Spain because it suits them.

  50. TR7

    Rich

    “Maddison £70million + £200k p/w on a 5yr deal = £122 million, at the end of his contract he’ll be 29

    Odegaard £35million + £110k p/w on a 5yr deal, = £63,600,000, at the end of his contract he’ll be 27”

    That Maddison is a better player and more suited to our needs than Odegaard is the only thing that should matter.

  51. Marko

    Odegaard is great for small clubs like Sociedad, Villareal and the likes, this is a big club

    Best to avoid the likes of Oyarzabal, Chuckweze and Pau Torres with that sort of thinking. And why are we buying players from Brighton if apparently big clubs are only supposed to buy players from big clubs.

    Also are we really?

  52. CG

    Elmo

    ””, but I don’t understand the 2 year contract extension or pay rise. We already have him contracted until he’s 31; why extend that to 33?”””

    Because thats what A & E do.

    We have all seen the fotos of A & E grinning with Runarsson, William , Cedric and Mari signings. Soon it will be another with the GX extension.

    They seriously think they are doing a good job! They are now Josh K chums!

    Xhaka’s a good pro- but there is not an ounce of logic in extending his contract.

    the moment GX puts pen to paper- GX will have the slippers on and be in retirement mode.( like most of the others)

    Xhaka will be the only player in history that will have no supporters at his testimonial game.

  53. DigitalBob

    Matt – I wouldn’t hesitate to play Lokonga next friday but Arteta will be Arteta and play the “experienced” midfield duo.

    Against Brentford maybe it won’t be so bad but the two games after that will show the Elneny/Xhaka midfield for what it is woefully inadequate for any team pushing for a top 4 spot.

  54. Dissenter

    Madrid had that buy back clause on Moratta too when they sold him to Juventus.
    They bought him back at an agreed fee of 40 million [after he had that excellent season] and sold him to Chelsea for 70 million.

    That buy back is a glorified loan where the buying club takes all the risks and Madrid does most of the profiting. If it goes right.

  55. Sid

    Diet Pep should humble himself and make amends with AMN, 45m gets you Buendia and Soumare.
    Keep it locked for more on who 50m can get you…..

  56. Matt

    Bob

    If we play Xhaka and Elneny in the first few games, we are going to be well off the pace before we are even 10 games in.

    A good start is essential if we are going to achieve anything this season and it feels like we are going to be going into our first few games completely unprepared. It almost feels like the first few games are going to be treated as an extended pre season and some more chances to warm up for the season.

  57. andy1886

    “Xhaka will be the only player in history that will have no supporters at his testimonial game.”

    I’m sure that Charlie will rope his family into coming along…

  58. Batesy

    With Partey out I would play Lokonga or even Willock against Brentford but bring back Elneny against Chelsea and City as we will be under the cosh in those games!

  59. Leedsgunner

    The mere fact that we are nervous about playing the season opener against a newly promoted side shows how far we’ve fallen in prestige and confidence.

    Under Wenger, he wouldn’t have been afraid to throw our youngsters in there — and told them to express themselves.

    We should be able to trust our fringe players and youngsters against Brentford to get the job done but since Arteta is fighting for his future, he dare not play a second string side… even though we have Chelsea and Man City soon after.

  60. Rich

    TR7

    Player progression isn’t static

    Players both progress and regress at different stages of their careers

    The art of navigating transfers, is knowing when to dump a player, and recognising when a players career is about to kick off

    Maddison is a good player who’d improve us significantly , but there’s question marks over his application, professionalism, and hip injury

    Odegaard is half the price, he improves us in the immediate, but for me has by far the higher ceiling, and there’s no question marks over his professionalism or application

    The question is how quickly will Odegaard progress?

    Would we benefit more in the immediate investing in Maddison, or by buying Odegaard + a central midfielder at the same price

    I’m absolutely done with Arsenal paying £200k p/w wages, even though I could potential make an exception for Saka further down the line

    We can pay some of the highest wages in football, but moving players on earning south of £120k, is much easier than moving players earning north of £120k

  61. CG

    Raptora

    ””’Stroller too. He said he approves Xhaka staying.””””’

    Don’t get me wrong, I am a huge admirer of Xhaka.Has lots of qualities, despite the lack of pace etc.

    And unlike Partey , he scores the odd goal and is the most robust player around is Granite.

    But after 5 years- he has done his time at AFC.

    ‘Change of scenery’ and all that for all parties involved.

    With this extension, Arteta showing he simply does not understand basic soccer management.

  62. Matt

    Rich

    What is it that makes you so sure Odegaard is going to progress? You keep comparing him to D Silva and KDB, but he has not shown anything that suggests he can get anywhere near their level.

    Other than his age, why so convinced?

  63. DigitalBob

    Matt – As it stands I think we are all a bit worried due to the summer not going exactly as most would have hoped in terms of the departures and the need for a refreshed squad,

    While I like Odegaard, if he is our next and final signing, we are an Emile/Saka long term injury away from a disastrous season!

  64. China1

    Xhaka is in fact a fantastic striker of the ball but he’s never in a position to take a shot due to his defensive commitments so it’s lost on him at arsenal.

  65. TR7

    Rich

    You are too fixated with wages and transfer fees without realising that an inferior player will cost us matches and points which also has severe financial implications such as loss of CL/Europa/PL money. Besides you are making too much fuss about Maddison’s supposed lack of application. It is not a major issue for me. If he can deliver now then he is the guy. Everything else is secondary.

  66. Marko

    Just looking through some of the deals that’s gone through this summer and it’s not just paying 52 million on Ben White while better and cheaper other options were available but we continue to do it in other positions too. We’re looking at perennial substitute Abraham for 30-40 million meanwhile Andre Silva, Boadu, Malen, Daka and Musa Barrow have gone for less. God knows what we’re trying to sign Ramsdale for and meanwhile Onana and Mike Maignan have joined clubs for less than 15 million this summer. There’s deals to be made but unfortunately we simply do not have a plan.

  67. Rich

    TR7

    I agree that putting it right on the pitch can improve our revenue, and we haven’t done enough of that

    My concern would be if Leicester green lit a Maddison sale to Arsenal at £70 million, when CL is worth potentially £40- £100 million to Leicester city

    Leicester aren’t stupid or desperate for money, if they green lit that sale, it would suggest they think they can find better value for money elsewhere

    Price is what you pay, and value is what you get

    I don’t buy the argument that Maddison, a player who in the middle of a pandemic, mixed with other people at a house party, turned off his phone, refused to go home, and then sat out a game that potentially cost his team a place in the CL as a result, isn’t a problem

    It’s beyond negligent

    https://www.thesun.co.uk/sport/football/14614728/leicester-covid-party-james-maddison-brendan-rodgers/

    We’ve had far too many dodgy characters in our dressing room in recent years, we should 100% be looking into the personality traits and lifestyle of any potential recruits

    I can deal with personality flaws, most creative geniuses are usually living right on the edge, but a lack of professionalism or application is another thing entirely

  68. curse

    Elmo, 115k @ 18!? no thanks, his agent must be closer to Raul than Edu!
    We’ve got Charlie and Miguel coming through so breaking the bank for kids doesn’t look smart.

  69. TR7

    A source close to Maddison told Football London that the 24-year is ‘at the top of the list’ for Arsenal in the summer transfer window. The major sticking point for Arsenal however is Leicester’s demands of over £60m for the midfielder. [@ChrisWheatley_]

    It’s understood Arsenal have sounded out the possibility of signing Maddison by offering a player in the deal via intermediaries to make the transfer fee more viable. [@ChrisWheatley_]

  70. gunnernet

    ‘Genuinely a little worried this summers stinger sale might be Eddie. He looks sharp, you know he’ll score goals on a run… and offering him a new deal with minutes is problematic because we told Balogun that and they share the same agent.’

    so it is better to cheat them for signing new contracts by promising them playing time and then start Willian. Fair play by MA

  71. DigitalBob

    It looks like it might be a player + cash deal on the table for Maddison, maybe AMN + £30M-£40M or something along those lines.

  72. S Asoa

    China1August 3, 2021 07:52:34

    The compulsive BS of passing out from the back, preferably going to the goalkeeper started with Emery who introduced it as the greatest invention since sliced bread.
    Arteta who is basically dumb copied it from Emery, like he copies from old defunct scrapbooks of others like Birlas , etc.

  73. Tom

    “Maybe they’ll take Holding as Fofana cost them CL football last season (lol)“

    Take that snarky shit to Reddit, Andy.
    Legrove is no place for snark.

  74. Foxy

    AMN if he cannot displace Elneny in MF at Arsenal is hardly going to get much game time at Leicester except maybe as injury cover and for minor cup games.

  75. raptora

    Yeah, AMN won’t be dropping Maddison’s cost to 30 or 40m nuh uh.

    I don’t think they’ll want Nelson as they moved his sibling Demarai Gray a year ago for less than 2m pounds.

  76. China1

    I’d take Aouar all day right now

    Can play deeper but also supports with creativity. Cheap price. I’d totally take that risk on his mentality at that price, age, quality stand point

  77. salparadisenyc

    Here I am hoping for a partnership of Partey and Guimaraes and seeing Xhaka contract on table. Then thinking surely we can’t enter another season without adding another goal creator to the squad and like clockwork the Maddison rumours reappear with a mental fee.

    I’m not one to heavily scutinize a transfer fee for an area we need addressing, i’ll leave that to Swiss Ramble but thats seems a bit extreme on heels of White fee with what can be acquired in this market for cash + player exchanges.

  78. Marko

    You know you could probably get two of Aouar, Odegaard or Brandt for what Leicester are demanding. Jesus English players with that premium you swear you’re getting world class players for it

  79. Dissenter

    If we start the season strongly then then there shouldn’t be a need to rush Partey back back too quickly.

    Ankle injuries tend to recur a lot.

  80. Marko

    Hypothetically speaking I would be delighted with Pepe-Maddison straight swap.

    I mean for all his faults Pepe’s 24 goals and 15 assists the last two seasons compared to Maddison’s 20 goals 13 assists all the while one is in a stable environment with a good manager the other is not. Can’t really bemoan a lack of goals and creativity when you wanna replace someone with less.

  81. Mee

    Arsenal won’t start strongly. Not with the Xhaka El Neny axis of mediocrity. Don’t be surprised to see White being asked to play high up from RCB with one of the two midfielders covering in a high defensive line alongside Mari. Add Willian and Bellend in there to season the dish of poo served by MA.

  82. Pierre

    My theory as to why Partey didn’t pick up injuries in spain is that he played deeper and was there to protect the defence and snuff out the opposition attacks .

    The injury v Chelsea occured with Partey on the front foot in attacking mode amd he was overstretching

    A previous injury last season was i think at home to Villa, and Partey was again in attacking mode on a one on one with the keeper and he overstretched…

    Maybe the club need to look at how they use Partey in the future, some players are just not suitable for making marauding runs from midfield …

  83. Rich

    Arsenal are unlikely to start strongly

    We have to beat Brentford

    Chelsea have a better team, we’re at home, it’s a 50/50 game that could go either way, if Chelsea add an elite striker, they’ll be genuine title contenders this season

    We’ve taken 2 points off City since December 2015, we’ve lost the last 9 league games straight, City are at home, and have a much better team than us

    We can secure a back to the wall, smash + grab victory, but any type of result at City, is an exceptional result, they were already much better than us, and look to be signing the League’s best striker, and the leagues second best attacking midfielder

    Next season will be tough, as we stand I think we’ll finish between 6th-9th, but a few astute signings can see us become more competitive

    Can’t say I’ll be too surprised if we took 3/9 points from our first 3 games

    But as long as we beat Brentford, Norwich, Burnley, Spurs

    Then 12/18 available points, is a decent return, anything above that, and I’ll be ecstatic

  84. Pierre

    Raptora
    ” read pretty much nothing re Pepe vs Chelsea. He was dangerous. Our best attacker.”

    Pepe was decent but our best attacker was obviously Nketiah in the short time he was afforded on the pitch.

  85. Dissenter

    Pierre
    You’ve become the resident truthsayer here
    It’s not a theory, it’s fact. Partey’s job at Atletico was essentially as defensive mid. He passed the ball unto Saul who was the carrier. Not to say, Party can’t pass progressively.

    Partey needed a midfielder of the same stature as he is to do his job. He’s being asked to do too much.

  86. TR7

    Marko

    Pepe’s numbers are padded up. Barely performs against any good team. Maddison on the other hand has orchestrated games against the best PL teams.

  87. Pierre

    We have won our last 3 matches v chelsea and we will beat them again in a couple of weeks …

    Brentford may be a draw with the city game a draw at best, playing them early may help us.

  88. Rich

    Pierre

    I like the optimism, not sure about drawing with Brentford, but 4 points from Chelsea + City, and 5 points and unbeaten in our first 3 games, I’d certainly take if I was offered it now

    Would be a nice early platform to build on

  89. Pierre

    Dissenter
    “Partey needed a midfielder of the same stature as he is to do his job. He’s being asked to do too much.”

    I see no harm in sitting Partey in front of the back 4, he has the skill set to dictate the play and has a good passing range..

    Could play willock and Lakonga either side of him which would hive Partey good passing options.

    The only problem with that is how do you bring Xhaka into the equation.

  90. SAGG

    Partey is starting to become.om of the worst signings Arsenal ha ve had considering the 50 millions we paid for him.

    Last season he spent a lot of time in the treatment table, and in some games he was garbage.

    Now he will miss the start of the season again because of an injury.

    Yeah he was great for Atletico in la Liga, just as Torreira was great for Sampdoria in Serie A. But it is pretty clear Torreira year one at Arsenal was much better than Partey first year.

    Just ask you this question Who on earth.will.pay us 50 million for thomas Partey right now? Nobody. Another player that we overpayed for his services. AGAIN.

  91. Dissenter

    Pierre
    The problem is that we tend to combine either of Xhaka or Elneny with Partey
    Xhaka is not vey mobile so Partey is forced to over-compensate

    Willock’s skill set is closer to the goal. He has that unteachable knack of anticipating the final pass to shoot at goal. His runs are difficult to pick up.
    Maybe Lokonga can fit into that role

  92. Foxy

    On the subject of over paying will man city really stump up some £150mm for Kane and no doubt a £200k per week plus salary. I hope not as do we really want Spurs to have £150mm to rebuild their squad and a disgruntled Kane stuck at Spurs would be great.

  93. Rich

    SAGG

    This is why I’m suspicious of big wages and big fees, we’ve burnt a few times now

    Maddison is a top player who ticks a lot of boxes, and will improve us significantly if we keep him fit, but anyone who isn’t:

    1. Concerned about his hip injury

    2. Concerned about his professionalism + lifestyle

    3. Concerned that a transfer that’ll cost us around £120 million over 5 years, is a massive gamble for these two reasons

    4. That Leicester will absolutely invest that money very smartly, and are probably letting him go for a reason

    Are just getting caught up in the emotion of it all

    I’d rather Arsenal stayed away from £200k+ p/w wages, maybe Saka further down and we could break that limit

    The thought of Ben White + James Maddison dragging Saka + Smith Rowe to late night parties and leading them astray, isn’t something I want brought into the dressing room

    I’d much rather have a dress-room of close knit consummate professionals, who live and breath football

    Rather than talented players with overinflated ego’s, who like the good life a bit too much

    Maybe it was a one off with Maddison, but when you see pictures of him partying with reality tv stars, it just sets alarm bells off for me

    Top player no doubt, but something just doesn’t feel right, I’d fear for what might happen after the honeymoon period, and Maddison sitting comfortably on a monster contract that sets him up for life

  94. Valentin

    Rich,

    I have exactly the same concern than you about any expensive deal for Maddison.

    I also think that the COvid breach party show a level of immaturity and unprofessionalism that worries me. Once caught by Rodgers, they decided to move the party to somebody else ‘s house.
    I can’t imagine how that behaviour would go done with Arteta. Unless he is treated like Royalty Willian 2nd, It’s breaching the non negotiables multiple times on the same night.

  95. KAY Boss

    According to sagg, Partey just got injured because he fancy being injured. His injury was caused by Loftuscheek sliding while his studs caught Partey’s ankle.

    Madison over Ode all day. Rich pipe down with the numbers. It’ll be useful in tax revenues. This seem to be the only club whose supporters are more concerned about money than the value that will be derived from the player.

  96. Guns of SF

    Drop a 50 Bill on Dani Olmo if we want to spend money.

    Forget Maddison, lets look at others too.

    Or 28ish M for Aouar. Take it…and use the remainder on a RB!

    What is so hard about this?

  97. Foxy

    After Ozil, Xhaka, Mustafi, Mkhitaryan etc. etc. We need hungry players with upside potential and resale value, Oordegard at £30m and £100 per week would fit this, Maddison for £50m and £200m as Rich said perhaps not.