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Good morning my darlings, here we are, basking in Monday morning glory, does it feel good? Of course it does.

… but don’t get top 4 complacent.

West Ham looks in a perilous state when it comes to the league. They have no centre-backs, the focus is on the Don Unai Cup, players will not be worrying about Arsenal.

… but that is where the danger lies. Chelsea took until the 90th minute to score. There are NO easy games in the league. Though I do take heart from the fact Chelsea had 26 attempts at their goals.

The players need to leave complacent ideas at the door. There are easy games in this league.

I do want to cast my eye to some of the mess that’s going on over at Manchester United. They’ve signed Ten Hag, the Twitter choice, and they’ve done it over Pochettino who is out at PSG.

Now, there’s no doubting the job that Mr Hag has done at Ajax. He rebuilt two teams, did huge work in the Champions League, and the football his sides play is quite simply some of the sexiest work you’ll see in Europe.

… but.

Ajax has a very deep understanding of who they are as a football club. There’s a total football DNA. There’s infrastructure and a built-in patience with the fans. They don’t have a clueless Class of 92 poking their noses in.

There’s also this: He has no experience in the Premier League. He looks great on paper, but the idea that he’ll just work over here because he’s done good work at Ajax is a touch fanciful. This is no mugs league. Peter Bosz (65% win rate at Ajax) moved to Dortmund and had a nightmare because he couldn’t program the fitness of the players, Holland to Germany isn’t the jump from Holland to England.

Then you have the big one. He has no track record with megastars. There is no way United clear out all their problem players in one hit. Big names have different mindsets. At Ajax, the players are young, their careers depend on the coach. When you move to a big Premier League club, these guys are eating regardless of performance. Ten Hag is going to have to deal with leakers, players that don’t want to learn new things, straight-up arsonists, and egos that think they rule the roost. Mikel Arteta was nearly downed by Ozil, Mustafi, and a group of internal monsters that wanted the worst for him. Ten Hag is going to deal with the same issues Rangnick and OGS dealt with, and be real, his profile won’t impress big names in a league that has Klopp, Conte, Tuchel, and Guardiola.

Now let’s talk other issues. Ronaldo is on a two-year deal worth £600k a week. He’s their top goalscorer and their biggest Premier League liability. Where else do you think he’ll get money like that at 38 years old? Nowhere. Can a new manager that plays a vicious pressing system afford to bench Cristiano? Now multiply that issue across the club. What are United going to be able to do that Arsenal couldn’t? Who is taking their mega earners on? United might be rich, but they can’t clog the squad if no one exits.

Jadon: £350k p/w

De Gea: £400k p/w (Ten Hag needs a keeper who can do Ramsdale things on the ball, good luck)

Harry: £190k p/w

Varane: £340k p/w

These are monster deals that no one else will pick up.

Then I see they are looking to fix their midfield with Frenkie. The first move of their new manager might be to take a £70m punt on a midfielder that is being benched by Xavi in a Barcelona side that just lost three successive home games in a row for the first time in history (check out how Barca fans feel about Auba now)? I’m down for it. No doubt there’s pedigree there, but outside ‘brand’ there’s not a lot I’d like about a £70m reboot.

So… this could all be wrong. United has to get it right one day. But listening to all the ‘it’s over’ chat because of one signing reminds me of the Conte, Jose, Ralf, and Carlo fans that said the same when those, far more successful coaches, landed at their respective clubs.

Pochettino was the bigger worry. Charismatic, experienced, took a Spursy culture to the Champions League final, very experienced in the Premier League. ‘He fucked it at PSG’, honestly, who doesn’t these days? They spat out Don Unai, Thomas Tuchel, now Poch… it’s a poison club. Only one man wants that job and he’s sitting in the Spurs dugout for 5 more games.

Finally, before we go, there’s more talk about Gabriel Jesus. I am fully prepared to take a massive L on this one, but rather than embrace it now, I’m going to dig in a little deeper.

I think his primary motivation is to stay at City and sign a new deal

He only joins Arsenal if 1) We make the Champions League 2) He is a wide option for us.

He fits the profile of signing, young, hungry, experienced, with a year on his deal. I’m just not so sure this noise is about our ambition or the player trying to ask probing questions of Pep G, who looked very pissed about the line of attack from journalists.

Jesus is a top player, he plays for City, he’s won loads of things, he seems a total professional. I would just be very surprised if Arteta pivoted from bidding £60m for Vlahovic and agreeing terms with a 6ft3 striker, to deciding his ideal man was a small striker with a very limited goal impact up until the Watford game.

Still, no one in the Premier League is better equipped to judge the talent of Gabriel Jesus.

Remember, clubs play the game with journalists, the more stories in the ether, the better for Arsenal. Don’t fall in love with a a rumour yet.

… but be fully aware of this one fact.

When David Ornstein announces we’ve signed Gabriel, I am going two feet into stories like ‘HOW SHORT STRIKERS ARE THE NEW FRONTIER IN AERIAL THREAT’

I’ll flip harder than a drug dealer caught in an undercover sting. You have been warned.

Right, we have some extra content for you today.

Here is Pedro talking to Latte Firm. Top channel. Subscribe. They have a Gabriel breakdown tomorrow.

Then we have The Arsenal Opinion.



Jump to comment form ↓

  1. WengerEagle

    Real are live here I tell ye, City should have been 3./4 nil up but now the game has been turned on its head and Real seem to thrive in these situations in the CL.

  2. Chris

    Wenger Eagle

    Honestly one starts to run out of superlatives for De Bruyne. I’d be giving Mary Mary a run for their money if I have any more praise.

  3. MidwestGun

    Loving the openness of this match.. gonna be more goals that’s for sure. After suffering through that Athletico v City dirge. where they tried to pressure City into oblivion with some dirt ball tactics to boot this is a lot more fun to watch

  4. Chris

    It’s gone from a game where City should be almost home and dry, to Madrid looking like regaining the cocky swagger of multi CL winners, next goal is massive. It’s a cracking game. Hopefully the 2nd leg will follow suit. How come we rarely get finals like this?

  5. WengerEagle


    There’s never been a hard individual carry-job than this one by Benzema in the CL in my memory.

    Real really are a pretty ordinary and aging team outside of him (who ironically is 34 himself). City had them chasing shadows until he scored to turn the game on its head. Chelsea and PSG are also both comfortably better sides that outplayed Real Madrid and he knocked them out pretty much single-handedly.

  6. WengerEagle

    ”How come we rarely get finals like this?”

    The pressure and the occasion gets to most players and they play not to lose rather than to win. Very rare that you see an adventurous and attacking CL Final.

  7. David.D

    I would definitely take Gabriel Jesus.
    Premier league ready.
    Great attitude and workrate.
    Knows where the goal is.
    With a year left on his contract and Haaland soon to arrive we have a great chance to get him.
    Anything like 30 to 35 million is a steal.
    He could be Brilliant for us.
    Strong rumours Edu has agreed terms with his agent.

  8. David.D

    Next 2 games for us
    West ham away
    Leeds home

    Spurs are
    Leicester home
    Liverpool away

    Whisper it quietly but we could be 5 points clear going into the game at Spurs if they beat Leicester and as expected lose against Liverpool and we beat West Ham and Leeds.
    Get a draw at Spurs and we could even afford to lose against what is looking a very very tricky game vs newcastle as long as we win our last game v Everton then champions league for us!
    All swings and roundabouts though.
    We have to beat West Ham.

  9. LoveSausage

    CBS shows everything that’s wrong with the punditry circuit. Richards, Henry, and Carragher are like the three dumbest bros at a frat party. NBC’s PL coverage is miles and miles ahead.

  10. Habesha Gooner

    Yeah Modric is capable of a surprise. But other than that this Madrid team doesn’t have match winners yet. There are some very promising players though. Vini Jr. has stepped up, Valverde is a top player and Camavinga is a star in waiting. But all of these players haven’t done anything in this Champions league run. Benzema carrying them all the way. It makes me wonder what more Benzema could have done in his career if he didn’t have to stay in Ronaldo’s shadow for so long though. He is genuinely the complete striker.

  11. WengerEagle


    Imo Benz is the closest thing to R9 I have seen.

    Less explosive of course and not as gifted a dribbler but better in some aspects such as holding the ball up and bringing others into play. They are quite similar players though in height and build besides that.

    What a game, Vinicius Jr great goal!

  12. MidwestGun

    Brazil just keeps churning out great players… Vini Jr.. is something to watch. This game is turning into a track meet. Would be surprised if Pep doesn’t tell them to take their foot off the gas pedal a bit.

  13. MidwestGun

    Not sure why Courtois didn’t even raise his’s like he thought the play was dead or something.. anyhow.. Hope RM score now… have to keep it going. Dani Cebs …. sighting.

  14. MidwestGun

    It’s like one of those boxing matches where you think at some point one boxer is done after an 8 count and by the end he is still slugging it out with a chance to get a split decision.

  15. LoveSausage

    Crazy game. Real Madrid is the strangest club in football. They don’t look great at any particular thing except for the art of getting a result. It’s in their DNA.