by .

Here. We. Go.

Arsenal are the prime target for all the hot goss this window because Mikel Arteta broke all his Ikea crockery and DEMANDED we go shopping at John Lewis.

The Dusan Vlahovic story seems hot online, I have no idea what the real deal is, but as expected, the fees that were being spoken about yesterday are now starting to come into line with something a little more realistic. Italian Sky reporting Fiorentina would like a shit ton of money, but they’d deal at 55m Euros plus Lucas Torreira. That’s quite the climb down from 69m euros yesterday.

Mikel Arteta once again reiterated in his press conference that every player he speaks to wants to join the club.

‘Historically, this club has been targeting the best players in the world and the best players in the world were always interested to come here’

… so let’s be real here if we are talking to Dusan, we’re not begging for his services. Edu and Arteta rarely miss and seem to do their homework, if the deal is progressing, it’s because they know the player wants a piece of it.

My suspicions are not very insightful.

  • Dusan Vlahovic wants a good deal.
  • Fiorentina wants a good deal.
  • There is only one club that will deal in January, which is Arsenal.
  • If another club comes in, the money goes up for all parties.

Johnny made a good analogy in the podcast about trying to do your pulling business before the lights go up. I think Vlahovic’s team is doing a last scan around the bar before making the decision to leave with the only offer.

Quick Spurs interlude. Matt Law reckons Barca couldn’t believe any club would pay the fee Spurs dropped for Emerson Royal. Lol, remember Arsenal fans losing their shit that we’d signed Tomi over him? I do.

The next deal the transfer accounts are talking about is Arthur Melo of Brazil. He’s a #8, 25 yrs old, he’s capped, he’s at Juve, played at Barca, was part of a mad swap deal massively overvalued him and Pjanic. He sound look like a good boy, there have been behavior issues with booze in the past, but he certainly has a lot of talent, finesse, and raw power. He was savaged for being a bit of a boring safe player to watch at Barca; without meaning to be rude, he sounds quite Xhaka-ish. Secure, not particularly adventurous, but I guess that’s what Arteta needs in that role. It’s a weird signing, but I guess we have to keep reminding ourselves… this is an emergency cover option, not the future of our midfield.

News on outgoing players is: BALOGUN HAS LEFT THE BUILDING.

He’s moved to Boro as they chase promotion under the excellent coaching of Chris Wilder.

I like this move for many reasons.

  1. Balogun is a mature adult. No sulking. He’s just cracking on with his future and he’ll go to the most northern parts of England to fulfill his potential.  This is his Huddersfield moment, we all know he can go to the top, now he needs to use this time to sharpen, grow bully boy teeth, and get some confidence.
  2. Chris Wilder is a great coach. What he did with Sheffield United was nothing short of a miracle. He’s progressive, he likes young players, he will make Balogun a star.
  3. Wilder has long had a football crush on Balogun. He likes the players, tried to signing him at Sheff U, which means this move isn’t a panic… it’s strategic. When a coach likes a player, they play them.

Arteta said Eddie is staying at the club, we’ll see there. If Palace comes in with a fee, it’d be hard to say no to it. The player wants big dollar, close to £100k a week, I’m not sure Palace are going to offer that. So his best bet if it’s about money, will be to wait and see who is there with a signing on bonus this summer. Rumours are French and German clubs want a piece of the action.

Talking football…

Arteta is going to seriously need to consider more rotation as we head into the back half of the season. Sambi Lokonga is a top player, but like any player, if he doesn’t get minutes, he’ll struggle when called upon. Arsenal played him on a long stretch of games until November the 27th, then we didn’t really see him until Nottingham Forest last week. The best managers in the league make everyone feel involved. I know we don’t have the depth of other sides, but come on, we have to be fair to Lokonga, he was part of that winning run, dropping him for 6 weeks wasn’t smart. There’s a lot on the line this season, but we’ll be better equipped to deal with bad moments if more players are trusted to take on minutes.

Nuno Tavares apparently reacted very well to the early sub. Arteta said he didn’t complain and that moments like this make the best people stronger. I really hope that’s the case, we won’t find out until we need him, because KT will need a rest at some point. Hopefully Nuno can come back fighting and play as well as he did at the start of the season.

Right, that’s me done. Have fun in the comments. x


Jump to comment form ↓

  1. MidwestGun

    Seems to me Vlahovic’s agent and Fiorentina are playing a dangerous game of chicken.. There is a big possibility we say .. fine… we are tired of your non commitment. No deal. Then he ends up signing for less money at what they consider a bigger Club and he won’t be starting. So his future value drops.. all he needs to do is look at the Jovic situation at Real Madrid .. Same thing happened to him. Additionally then we pull the possible transfer of Torrieirra to Fiorentina and the club is left with a poor deal as well. Juventus will try and lowball them or make a 10 year payment structure. Also I think Vlahovi probably does feel like he owes his teammates soemthing on this season and would feel like he is abondoning them.. Which is admirable that he has that kind of loyalty but it’s a profession and business is business.

    Anyhow.. at this point I dont think anything actually chanced from our intitial offer the media just changes a few details of it and recycles the story.

  2. AR

    RE: Arthur
    Though not adventurous himself, a reliable secure #8 allows our front 4 to be more adventurous! Definitely looks like a Xhaka-type, which we do need, minus the brainfarts. Fellow Brazilians help getting him settled in as well.

    Also, worst case scenario – quality cover in midfield. Best case scenario – we pull another Odegaard by using a loan to get a both parties accustomed to each other, and if all goes well, we get a Xhaka upgrade (similar profile but younger, and less brainfarty) in the summer, and as well as some cash from Roma for Xhaka.

    As for Vlahovic, looks like we are going all in, saving all the expense striker position, and looking for loans for the CM position, for now. Makes sense, as the pool of quality targets is a lot smaller than for the midfield position. Add to that we definitely need reinforcements for the future, irrespective of the Laca situation (even if we extend it might be a short term, and not Arteta vision for longterm future), with Auba and Eddie definitely out sooner than later – leaving Balogun as the only current long term prospect (unlike MF where we are least partially covered with Partey, ESR, Sambi, Ode, maybe AMN, with the likes of Patino in line).

  3. MidwestGun

    Anyhow, I wish I would hear more about concrete moves to strengthen our midfield…. like yesterday. It feels like Afcon has aimed a giant torpedo at the side of our season.. and it could hit this week. Out of both Cups and back down to 6th place. Hopefully, not the case and we at least win the NLD whatever, it takes.

  4. Dissenter

    There’s no way Eddie wants close to 10-k weekly
    Is he maaad, or something?
    No one is going to offer him more than 30k weekly?

  5. AR

    My only hope with Vlahovic is his intent.

    1) He doesn’t owe us anything to blindly join us.
    2) If he wants to shop around to get the best deal among various footballing projects, and try to milk the best deal possible, that is fair.
    3) If we break the bank for his demands, and he joins us believing in out project 100% – not a bad deal (provided it doesn’t cause friction among our stars for the gap in contract terms – like Ramsey vs Ozil)

    What would suck is – he joins us because we broke the bank and was the better/best contractual offer he had – and he joins us without buying into the Arteta vision a 100%. That would be a recipe for future disaster.

  6. AR

    @Dissenter – He is banking on the Bosman saving money for the team. Not that he deserves that wage because of his accomplishments. Case in point – Ramsey @ Juve.

  7. andy1886

    The reason that Sambi was dropped (after a MOTM performance I believe) was so that MA could indulge as quickly as possible his Xhaka love-in. Not exactly clever on a number of levels ultimately.

  8. MidwestGun

    This is just me reading the tea leaves but it does like Arteta wanted to get Granit firing on all cyclinders before Afcon knowing Partey and Elneny were leaving and he didnt take into consideration enough what that would do to Lokonga’s form. And then I believe also Loko came down with Covid further delaying things.

  9. TeeCee

    Agreed Andy. Arteta damaged Lokonga by dropping him the second Xhaka was ready, even though he was playing well…. bad management. He should have given him a couple more games then said I’ll giving you a little rest. BUT we’re talking a bizarre relationship here between Arteta and a very poor player in Xhaka, we all joke that Xhaka must have some VERY compromising photos of Arteta to get the chances he does. Lokonga isn’t someone you can rely on yet. Please just go and get Bissouma, he’d be so good for Arsenal, especially alongside Partey.

  10. IAT-Robbie

    “He sound look like a good boy, there have been behavior issues with booze in the past”

    Come on man. You can’t call players like Auba and Guendouzi a disgrace while downplaying someone that got arrested for drinking and reckless driving as “a good boy”.

    Hoping that transfer rumour is just gossip and nothing more. Best not to get involved with a club under financial investigation.

  11. WengerEagle

    Nah to Arthur Melo. Have watched him quite a bit over the years and have never really been impressed.

    Serious questions have to be asked why he cannot break into this awful current Juventus side. Also was very meh for Barca before, Xavi comparisons were always daft.

  12. The Bard

    I think Pedro has it about right with the Vlahovic situation. He is hoping for a bigger club, despite Artetas comments, playing CL and bigger wages. Its in his interests to will wait and see what his options are. I just hope we have more than one iron in the fire. We desperately need a striker and a midfielder.

  13. Al

    Wasn’t it more a case they had injury concerns about Sambi, then we we on a good run and he also got covid explaining the limited use.

    Regarding this Arthur signing I think overall it would be a really positive one. At the right age, previously shown his quality and get to test the waters for 6 months to see if he fits (ala Odegaard).

    On top of that if he is the replacement for AMN within the squad that is such a massive upgrade.

  14. Positive pete

    “ Emergency cover operation.Not the future of our midfield”.wouldn’t be too sure about that scenario Pedro.Don’t like the sound of it one little bit.If they wanted a short term cheap fix.why not go for Gina winaljum from PSG .A player that ticks all the boxes.
    If they can’t get the midfielder they REALLY want( whoever that is?) supposedly.Melo ain’t gonna do Arteta any favours.A step down from caballos.Nuff said.

  15. Dissenter

    I don’t think Vlahovic’s Melo’s reluctance has to with money.
    It’s about the project; we have a young manager managing a club that’s been out of Europe now for 4 seasons.

    Why would he jump in so readily when there are bound to be better offers to consider in the summer?

  16. Positive pete

    At least with vlahovic there’s prob reasonable alternatives if him & his agent think they can do better.F** k em.But midfield is the REAL bugbear & midget Melo ain’t going to cut the mustard short term or otherwise.Juve very rarely offload quality.cutting their losses at our expense & also adding insult to injury are also looking at Guimares.

  17. Invincibles

    I have been supporting Arsenal since the early 1970s. When have the really best players in the world ever wanted to come to Arsenal.

    Even at peak Wenger Chelsea and Man U in England and Real and Barca abroad would pick off our best players (who we would largely grow from scratch) and we would have to find ways to recruit undervalued stars. And going back before that Juve took Brady.

    Wenger’s strength was getting players like Overmars and Kanu that had injury question marks or young French talent like Vieira and Henry that were being undervalued. Bergkamp from the brief Rioch period is the biggest name I can think we ever signed and there were big question marks over him at Inter Milan. Later with Wenger he went for players Barca and Real needed to clear to land what they thought were bigger players – that was his we got Ozil and Sanchez.

    Arteta should say the best young talent in the world wants to come to Arsenal to be developed because that the message we are trying to get out.

  18. Buzzy

    Melo is a slower Guen. Keeps his head down when receives the ball. So if he comes you’re basically choosing the lesser of two evils – xhakas snail like turning radius and lack of speed vs Melos selfishness and inability to spot

  19. Positive pete

    We always have convinced superstar players to join us at various times from Joe Baker & George Eastham in the 60s,Alan Ball & Supermac in the 70s,the 80s Charlie Nicholas & of course the 90s with Bergkamp.But Arsenal have always been very cautious with their Big buys with v.few exceptions.It’s what’s cost them countless titles over the years when they should have strengthened ( like the 30s)& of course they’ve allowed superstars to leave.Too many.

  20. Tom

    Im glad to hear no one says no to Arteta and Arsenal.
    Let’s go after this Haaland character then.

    The Vlahovic transfer valuation isn’t the problem.
    His wage demands are.
    Give one 21 yo anything over £200kpw and you’re gonna have a difficult conversation with Saka’s agent explaining why his client isn’t worth the same.

  21. Buzzy

    Halaand is another overrated striker just like Vlahovic.

    The problem is these guys aren’t “smooth”.

    A true striker is aesthically pleasing to the eye.

    There is nothing off about them.

    Henry was smooth.

    Vardy is smooth.

    RVN was smooth.

    You don’t find smooth ones these days. This is why i knew Sancho would be a flop. He’s not smooth.

  22. Buzzy

    Torres, yes. He’s like a smoother Martinelli. The closest smooth goal we’ve had in a decade was scored by Martinelli against West Ham. Was absolutely due at Arsenal.

    Amongst our potential targets, Isak comes closest.

  23. Pierre

    “Waiting for Pierre to come here and tell us we are all wrong 🙂”

    Muppet by name, Muppet by nature.

  24. Unoni

    Van nistelrooy, big dunc and Jonny Hartson weren’t smooth
    Chris Sutton wasn’t smooth. Andy Cole wasn’t smooth. Niall Quinn. Luca Toni. Carsten Janker.

  25. TR7

    R9 was a different level of beast. He could be smooth, mazy or lazy depending on his mood. There was nothing that he couldn’t be.

    Klose, Inzaghi, Shearer were poachers, not sure you can call them complete strikers.

  26. Buzzy


    Nistelrooy was smooth af in the box. Inzaghi was smooth too.

    Klose is just a mystery that even the Germans can’t decipher.

    And exceptions prove the rule.

  27. Unoni

    Arteta should have sold Nketiah in the summer or last jan. While his stick was high and we could have got a decent fee.
    Was never convinced but I thought I’d wait and see how he developed with time. No shades of Martinez over this guy. He’s never arsenal level. He’ll end up at Bolton or QPR

  28. Unoni

    They were scrappy as hell. Goals off their shoulder, shins, ankles. Same as Drogba.
    I’ve only seen YouTube clubs of Vlahovic but I’d say there’s more silk in his touch than that of Inzaghi or RvN.
    But beauty is in the eye and all that.

  29. Emiratesstroller


    I tend to agree with what you have posted. Arsenal have never been buyers of the top level
    players in world football, although we recruited Bergkamp, Henry and Vieira before they reached that level.

    I recall Hill-Wood’s statement when we moved to Emirates Stadium suggesting that Arsenal
    could now buy any player apart from Ronaldo and Messi.

    Sadly he underestimated the buying power and ambition of PSG, Man City and Chelsea.

    However, I do see a change at Arsenal since the Kroenke family took ownership as opposed
    to control of Arsenal. They are now prepared to make available an increased level of transfer
    budget and fees.

    Arsenal are still not in the league of clubs who will buy Mbappe and Haaland, but they are
    probably able to buy the next level of striker in the £50-70 million price range and we know
    that they can and will sanction top dollar wages if they are required to do so as was case
    with Aubameyang.

    It remains to be seen whether we buy a striker in this January transfer window.Clearly the
    management need a couple of players to strengthen the squad if we want to finish in top 4
    and qualify for Champions League.

  30. Unoni


    Shearer was the complete striker. He was the best crosser in a great England squad before becks got in and even then was second only to him. Great with back to goal. Underrated passer. Different era but my point was more that many of these strikers were often scruffy in their approach play and that silk, while a sight to behold isn’t a prerequisite for a successful striker.

    Yes R9 could be whatever he wanted but he wasn’t pure silk/smooth like an RvP or a Messi or Henry or Del Piero or prime Raul

  31. Unoni

    uzzyJanuary 12, 2022 18:53:10
    Apologies. I’ve certainly had one too many. And the full bodied cigar isn’t helping. That was Giggs.

    Can’t beat a good stogie and a glass of whiskey

  32. englandsbest

    We should erase the Notts Forest game from our memory. It has no bearing on what lies ahead. But I have the feeling that if Arteta had told his players, ‘Look, this is a game we gotta win’, Arsenal would have won.

    On Eddie, I am betting he’ll fire his agent and sign a contract with the Club

    One thing has become clear: money is not a problem.

    We might be mistaken by thinking Arteta had the Florentine in mind when he said, ‘the world’s best players want to come to Arsenal’. Instinct tells me Arteta was/is aiming far higher. Even if it means waiting for a striker till summer. I am thinking Haaland. In which case, the Florentine is just smoke and mirrors. Edu and Arteta have gotten wised up on that.

    An all-action midfielder is a near cert.

  33. Unoni


    I really don’t think he was smooth. He had unbelievable control at high speed but he didn’t do it with the grace and elegance of an Henry. He had a hurried ferrety style for me which made him appear a bit awkward.
    Do t get me wrong. He was the phenom. Legend. Not disputing any of that. Just his style. It wasn’t always smooth. Not for me.
    Henry, Messi, RvP. David Villa, del Piero, Baggio, Totti. Like silk

  34. Batistuta

    Arthur Melo big lol. Can’t break into what is maybe the worst Juventus midfield of all time and that’s with good reason.

    We better steer clear of that mess

  35. Batistuta

    Only one I’d take in that Juventus midfield is Weston McKenzie. Has a good engine on him.

    Asides that look, throw all the money at Ruben Neves or even Tielemans who sounds like he’s tired of the Liecster project.

    Bissouma was outstanding for Mali today by the way

    Think it’s incredible that we didn’t do anything in that midfield in the summer while stacking up defenders especially knowing fully well we’d be losing Partey and the very basic El Neny for a few weeks, poor squad planning if you ask me

  36. Buzzy


    Don Pepin with any cocktail is a safe bet the remembrance goes to’s my go to on our big away games in the hope it’ll make me forget Xhaka plays for us

  37. TR7

    I think Nketiah is getting a lot of unfair stick. Sure he missed a couple of easy chances but the good thing about Nketiah is when he plays he seems to produce goal scoring chances due to his movement and instincts of a striker. A lot of players played much worse than him against Forest.

  38. LoveSausage

    From the gossip I’ve seen, Arthur is supposed to be a loan deal until the end of the season. Pretty average player but this very much feels like a “get a warm body in there” situation. We’re hardly going to spend a combined 100M in this TW (striker + CMF) so this is a reasonable way to plug the gap until the summer. We need a goal scorer more than we need a CMF in the immediate term.

  39. WengerEagle

    Anguissa who we asked for all summer has been outstanding for Napoli too Batistuta.

    And he is a loan- €15m permanent fee at the end of the seaosn. Roughly the amount that we rejected for Xhaka and less than what we rejected for AMN.

  40. Dissenter

    “Think it’s incredible that we didn’t do anything in that midfield in the summer while stacking up defenders especially knowing fully well we’d be losing Partey and the very basic El Neny for a few weeks, poor squad planning if you ask me”

    Nothing personal with Ben White who’s been decent overall but we needed two quality midfielders more than a “ball playing central defender”. Especially since we have a certain Saliba that did well on loan.
    We should have added the 15 million being offered for Xhaka to the 50 million we paid for Ben White to fix our midfield.
    We made some avoidable strategic blunders in team planning in the summer

  41. WengerEagle


    Ronaldo9 scruffy? He was technically superb. Zidane maintains he is the most technically gifted player that he ever played with.

    Ball was glued to his foot on those mazy dribbles for Barca and Inter before the injuries.

  42. Unoni


    Yes his touch was good but his style (for me) was quite awkward, hurried and ungraceful.
    Henry had far more elegance. His movements always seems like he had time to do what he wanted and seemed far more deliberate and in control.
    Just my take

  43. WengerEagle


    Understand what you mean, Ronaldo was more of a force of nature/wrecking ball whereas Henry just had so much swagger and class.

    I cannot even begin to explain how much I enjoyed watching prime Thierry as a kid.

  44. WengerEagle

    I wouldn’t have associated Rooney with graceful, was more a force of nature/bully type and blood and thunder. Obviously coupled with flawless technique but still, style-wise not really graceful for me.

    For me Henry, Eto’o, David Villa, Fernando Torres (Liverpool), Anelka, Ibrahimovic, Benzema, Henrik Larsson, Berbatov were all very graceful and smooth.

  45. The Bard

    Tom good post mate. Spot on. Bringing in big wage players charges the dynamic in the dressing room. I’ve said for a while unless we sign up Saka on serious wages he will be offski sooner rather than later

  46. Guns of SF

    Dani Alves one of the greatest fullbacks IMO
    Heard he wanted Barca to have him fight for his place, ( not guarantee him anything, and also be the lowest paid player)
    If this is true, then respect big time

  47. Guns of SF

    Been watching my son play FIFA lately, and learning all about that money pit.
    Who knew Vinicius has a card worth 3M with 99 pace.
    for all you fifa players that is like a holy grail card

    My kid will never be able to afford that one!

  48. WengerEagle

    Agree LS.

    Clasico between 2008-2017 was must-watch. Quality in 2010-15 especially was breathtaking, you pretty much had x2 World XI’s playing against each other.

    How many from both sides combined get into a current World XI? Just Benzema really.

  49. LoveSausage


    There’s a few world class talents in there like Vinicius Jr and FdJ. But the pace is just ridiculously slow. It’s shocking to see how much time they have on the ball. RM are acting as if they’re playing peak Barcelona and backing off. A bit of counter press, even at 50% intensity, and this Barcelona team falls apart like a house of cards.

  50. WengerEagle

    Yeah LS weird approach from Ancelotti. Showing respect to a husk of a side that should put fear into nobody. I mean they have Luuk De Jong leading the line.

    Real have the ability to just blow Barca away. Big pitch is an added bonus you would have thought with their pace up top.

  51. Habesha Gooner

    Arthur melo can’t hack it. I thought there was a player there when I saw him in Barcelona. He can pass well. But he doesn’t make a significant pass often enough. And he has even regressed at Juventus. I guess he can come here to have enough bodies. But I wouldn’t play him instead of Sambi or Partey. Xhaka is going to play no matter what under arteta. So I wouldn’t understand this move aside from getting us a new body in that midfield the next few weeks.

    I am glad people are seriously looking at Bruno G. He is fantastic. A good CM at the right age. Juventus are looking at him apparently. They will probably want a loan with an obligation to buy in three year installment payments. I would tempt Lyon with an offer of a loan with an obligation to buy in the summer. And I would do that before looking at Arthur. Lyon named to raise money after they failed to sell Aouar last summer. The fee would be negotiated but they might sell with that strategy.

  52. Unoni

    Favourite Classico of all time was the vintage Ronaldinho classic
    He ruined Madrid that day. Still for me the most talented player Ive ever seen

  53. englandsbest


    Okay, I’m a peasant, I never stray beyond the thirties. But you don’t need to, there are some mighty smooth ones in the twenties and late teens. Try a native of NI, old Bushmills original, a teenager, or his older brother, a ten year old, would you believe?

  54. Habesha Gooner

    Spuds wait for a trophy continues. Already down 1 nil and 3 nil in aggregate. I will applaud cinte for the job he has done if he ever wins one trophy with them. They have that much of a poor mentality.

  55. Jamie

    EB –

    Not a huge fan of Irish whisky, but I went to the Bushmills distillery a decade or so ago. Tried some limited runs which were decent.

    I’m a peat smoke Islay fan, personally. Lagavulin, Laphroaig, Ardbeg.. Pair with a Cohiba and it’ll go bang.

  56. Unoni

    JamieJanuary 12, 2022 20:41:29
    MM, Woodford Reserve – they’re all cocktail whiskeys/bourbons. Wouldn’t drink them neat like an old single malt.

    Maybe I need to up my game.

  57. Globalgunner

    Only time I can get behind Chrlsea is when they are beating up on the loathsome Spuds.

    Good to know the Tottenham curse remains strong. I was worried when Conte joined them at first.

  58. Globalgunner

    2 Spud dives 2 rejected pens. Andre Marriner is very keen to award them a penalty. Kane thinks he has scored. Alas offside.

  59. S23

    I have a horrible feeling Kane will be getting his 250th goal when the Arsenal make a wish gang turn up,just like that awful Lamela and his wonder goal against us,pretty sure he never scored again!!
    Not too bothered about tomorrow,but Sunday is a must win for us.

  60. MidwestGun

    Watching the Old Lady play Inter in the Supercoppa final. Its like a throwback Chile team Vidal and Alexis Sanchez versus Juventus and their lack of a striker… 1-1 in the 30 mins overtime. Looking like a pk shootout incoming

  61. MidwestGun

    Oops nervmind.. Alexis Sanchez won it with… 30 secs left.. Mob scenes… much celebration. Alexis basically stripped off his entire kit and marched off on teh shoulders of his teammates.. hahaha

  62. MidwestGun

    Yep … me too. Eagle.. Still wish we had brought in his best mate Vidal when we had the chance . back in the day .. I think we would have won more and kept him around. Anyhow.. water under the bridge. Watching these players celebrate…. not gonna lie I would like to see us win the Caraboa Cup. Trophies matter. My confidence is not high though.. for tomorrow. And I understand the arguement about prioritising..the League first. but I like celebrating trophies. its fun as a fan.

  63. WengerEagle


    It’s our best chance I would say given Pool do not have Salah or Mane available and likely TAA too.

    Still expect their midfield to dominate but I am hopeful that Klopp’s disinterest in domestic cups will see them overlook it a bit.

  64. MidwestGun

    Yep ..I hope their focus is a little off. Klopp’s dust up with Arteta last time we played them though might make him put a little more emphasis on the match.. Klopp doesnt seem like the type to just forget these things

  65. WengerEagle


    Haha yeah Klopp definitely takes everything personally, heart on his sleeve kind of guy.

    He hasn’t ever really taken domestic cups seriously but it is a SF and it is at Anfield so you would expect them to be right up for it.

    Tonight really did feel like the end of an era for Juventus. Close to a decade of dominance but now Inter are truly the top dogs in Italy.

    I for one am glad, never have liked Juve all the way back to the early 2000s. Was always an AC Milan guy myself.

  66. Nigel Tufnel

    Dissenters quote:

    “Nothing personal with Ben White who’s been decent overall but we needed two quality midfielders more than a “ball playing central defender”. Especially since we have a certain Saliba that did well on loan.
    We should have added the 15 million being offered for Xhaka to the 50 million we paid for Ben White to fix our midfield.
    We made some avoidable strategic blunders in team planning in the summer”

    This really does make sense because our midfield has been a known weakness since the beginning of last season.

    Imagine the team with a regularly starting Holding next to Gab and Tomi, not as good as White…… but…
    a real quality midfielder next to Partey and occasionally Xhaka and Sambi getting in some work.

    We would be better off in that situation right now.

    Ben White has been better than i expected, and he will never, ever, get love on this blog, no matter what he does, so I’ll continue to be positive about him. I do like the managers vision of White and Ramsdale playing from the back. Very few teams do it as well, and Gabriel has improved too.

    But Dissenter is still right that we needed to prioritize midfield at the time.

  67. WengerEagle

    That is what a lot of us said Nigel Tufnel and you were hurling abuse at anyone questioning our spend.

    Ben White is a good player and a terrific footballer for a defender but did we really need him more than a top CM or ST?

  68. Raulishuss

    i’ll buy white again for a billion if it means no regular game time for holding. Guy becomes extra average if he’s to mark someone who even looks like jogging.

  69. WengerEagle


    Holding is shit granted but we had both Saliba and Mavropanos available there and we opted to send one out on loan and sell the other for peanuts.

    Was just poor decisions all round there.

  70. HerbsArmy

    Central defence has been a problem area for years, apart from Sol Campbell and to a lesser extent Kolo Toure, Wenger was notoriously shockingly bad at finding anyone half decent.
    As well as looking to invest in a robust, creative midfield unit and a prolific striker, it’s about time we sorted a quality Centre-back pairing, and by quality, I mean better than the Mertesacker-Koscielny combination, who were okay most of the time, but never great, and always had an error waiting to be exposed.

  71. HerbsArmy

    It was one of Wenger’s ex-Central Defenders, Johann Djourou, whose challenge on Jack Wilshere during the England – Swiss friendly in the summer of 2012, put Wilshere out for 18 months, which turned out to be a much bigger problem for Wilshere getting back to fitness and consequently only having a bit-part career.

  72. IAT-Robbie

    Seeing Djourou in defence terrified me back in the day. Those are not memories I would like to revisit. As someone who was a defender in his playing days, Wenger preferred spending more on midfielders. Interestingly, the exact opposite seems to be true for Arteta.

  73. Nigel Tufnel

    Wenger Eagle,
    The anger and abuse that Ramsdale and White took, because grovers thought they knew best, and had no vision, made me sick.

    If someone only said the balanced comment that dissenter just made, do you think I would go after them? Be real.

    Comments like, he’s too small, too lightweight, not even a good defender, no good in the air. He’ll get pushed around. On and on it went. It was mostly people saying he’s no good and Arteta is an idiot. The worst part is none of them saw him play. Neither did I, but now i see the vision behind it and I’m happy.

    Some people reasonably focused on the need for midfielders first. Without saying White and Rambo were sh1t.

    By the way, I do remember Ramsdale from last season being a great shot stopper. Never noticed the best part, his distribution. It’s like having an extra player in build up.

    Were you nasty about him? I wonder.

    I’m happy how it’s turned out because I like the style of play, but I definitely see dissenters point about midfield. I also think Arteta should’ve given more game time to Sambi, but I’m not sure if he’s seeing serious flaws along with the potential we see. He did fvck up the Liverpool game 2nd half for sure.

  74. Leedsgunner

    Joorabchian really did the club over when he sold us David Luiz, Willian and Cedric Soares.

    So what do I read?

    Guess who represents Bruno Guimaraes? Joorabchian…

    I think it’s a chase of holding one’s nose… but Guimaraes would be brilliant for us.

  75. Dark Hei

    Mert-Kos matured into a great CB pairing.

    IF we have something like that, we are top 4. So don’t shift them short.

    Only reason why people think they ain’t great is because they didn’t play that long together. I think only 2-3 seasons.

  76. Leedsgunner

    I’m also loving the links with Youri Tielemanns. Forget Maddison, Tielemanns is Leicester’s best player.

    He would be a fantastic addition if we wanted someone who was EPL ready… and age wise perfect so we don’t have the situation we have with the strikers at the moment.

  77. HerbsArmy

    Dark Hei

    I respectfully disagree, neither were great individually, and I would say sometimes they were solid together, but this always tended to be against the weaker sides.
    Arsenal conceded a lot of goals against our rivals with Mertesacker-Koscielny at the heart of defence.
    They were part of Wenger’s flat-track bullies, who always flattered to deceive, looked great against lower sides, and when it was a no pressure game, when it really mattered in a litmus test, they and Arsenal crumbled far too often.
    Your memory of them is far more generous than mine.

  78. DivineSherlock

    Youri Tielemans is a pipe dream guys , sorry to break it to you . He is driving up the Arsenal talk to get a good fat contract with Leicester , just like Vardy did.

  79. Goobergooner


    I just read this comment (yes late as always):

    “We are only half way through this rebuild, we still have around 18 players to ship out and replace with 13 new players including all but 1 of the players on loan.”

    Are you high?!?!