by .

Gooners, go to the fancy cupboard, pull out a bottle of the expensive stuff, and find the nice glasses. We’re celebrating the biggest win of the last decade… neigh, the biggest win of the CENTURY.

William Saliba took his DECISION to French national TV and he… is STAYING.

Oh my god, I honestly don’t know what I’d have done if had decided to quit, regardless, we can ALL rest a little easier knowing that the Twitter this summer is going to be a little easier.

So what did the BIG man say?

‘I belong to Arsenal, I still have two years left’

‘I will be back with Arsenal. I have played zero matches and I still want to show them my true face and have the chance to play for these fans and this great club.

Honestly, I read lines like that and it makes me very happy, because this is basically what I’ve been saying about him all season. To make a career in football is a 180 in 1.5m chance, to make it in the Premier League, the chances are so slim, it’s almost not worth figuring out the stat because it’d have too many zeroes on it (I think it’s 0.02%). The idea that he was not going to want to get back to England and prove himself because he was offended by a loan was so, so far wide of the mark.

So what did the player say of his loan?

‘If I were to describe my season in a word? Surprising, or magical,’

‘It was my first full season. I was committed to showing people who I really am.’

‘The assessment is positive and I’m happy with my season. When you look at Marseille from the outside, you say: it’s good, but it’s make or break. So I told myself: “you’re going to this club and you can’t joke around, you can’t mess around, you have to play to the maximum every match”.

‘It’s as if I’ve been at Marseille for at least two or three years. It’s really special, even if I don’t return to Marseille, I’ll never forget it.

‘Thanks to Marseille, I reached the next level in my career; they lifted me.’

So for all the people that said ‘this loan move is offensive’ or ‘Arteta has really fucked up here’ well, there you have it. The player grew up, he knuckled down, he focused on his craft and he absolutely blew it out the park. I’m not sure there are many loans in history that have gone so well, they’ve ended up with a call-up to the World Champions.

The infantilization of Saliba that went on all season was so ridiculous and I am so happy that the player is showing that he’s not a baby. This boy came back a man and now he’s ready. His coach at Marseille, Jorge Sampaoli, had this to say on his development.

‘William’s progress is linked to his development this season and the maturity he now has and his playing time.

‘He is now consistent, he’s grown up as a player. In relation to his situation at the club, I hope that there is a possibility for us to retain a player like him, who knows the team.

Again, those comments are from an incredibly experienced coach, and he’s telling you why the player went out on loan. William Saliba made his mistakes on Marseille’s watch this season, he ironed out the immaturity in his game, and he learned how to go to war with a warrior coach. He made 52 appearances, clocking in 4500 minutes, which makes him the most experienced 21-year-old centre back in Europe. There were also concerns at Arsenal that he was fully developed physiologically, which would have made him susceptible to injuries, well, whatever they’ve tweaked behind the scenes, it seems to have worked, because that is an incredibly robust season. The Premier League is a different monster, but the foundations are clearly very strong.

Now the loan has worked, there are obviously going to be questions about whether Saliba could have stayed with Arsenal last season. Maybe he could have, but the bigger ask is this: Would he have landed more minutes than he did at Marseille? No way. Absolutely no chance. At best, he’d have made appearances at the backend of the season like Rob Holding and racked up 1000 minutes. There are no guarantees he’d have been in the right frame of mind to take on those minutes and the Premier League is much harder and faster, so the ride might have been bumpy.

The difference now is Saliba will be coming back with respect on his name, he’ll have an air about him, he’s in the French National squad, his reputation will be known in the dressing room. He is legitimately fighting for a first-team place next season, which is exactly what our defence needs.

What I’m most excited about is the interchangeable pieces we now have. William Saliba can do everything Ben White and Gabriel can do and he can also slip into right back. We have cover if Tomi get injured, we have a really powerful 3 at the back option with 3 outlets that can break the lines, and we also have rotation options now that don’t decimate how the team plays.

It’s all very exciting.

So in short, most of the hysterics around the loan move have been laid to rest.

  • The player landed the most minutes of any 21 yr old centre back in Europe
  • He played at a very high level and made a European semi final
  • He’s on the record saying he’s brimming with confidence and he had a magical time
  • He wants to prove himself with Arsenal this season

Say it quietly: The loan move was good.

… but my word, have a lot of people staked their football reputations on him. Let’s hope he lives up to the hype.

Also, I hope that this approach to developing players can now be seen as more acceptable. Not every young player is ready, loan moves give minutes and confidence, if the contracts are sorted, they can be very valuable. Balogun, BNC, Hutchinson, and Patino might all be eyeing a development move themselves this summer… William Saliba is now the case study in getting it right.

Right, that’s me done. I’m going to have king of the Saliba Ultras on a podcast later to talk about this stunning moment in their ever so short by stressed history.

Before we go… if you want to watch a video of me and Matt Kandela talking about the 1997-98 transfer window, subscribe to that damn Patreon and get amongst it. Someone reminded me that we were linked to Nano and Ibrahim Ba that window. I remember being explosively excited about those rumours. What a time to be alive. My favourite thing about that time is that every transfer was about hope… versus this miserable world we live in now when every transfer target seems to have 15 people queuing up to tell you why it’s shit.

This podcast is pure transfer joy and it has some really cool data in there that gives context to how hard we moved to get back to the top. ENJOY. If you aren’t subscribed, know that there are tiers to what you can pay, we know life is expensive at the moment, so whatever you can spare. xxx

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Jump to comment form ↓

  1. BacaryisGod


    Truly admire your Houdini-like pivot on Saliba. Considering you were the single biggest critic on here of Saliba and his decision to go to Marseille, it’s almost a thing of beauty for you to go on the attack . Kudos for the sheer ballsiness of your writing!

    I don’t know if he’ll be a success or failure for us next year but there’s no doubt he’ll be under a bigger microscope than any other Arsenal player due to the drama of the last couple of years. Let’s hope he shines.

  2. Thorough

    ‘Again, those comments are from an incredibly experienced coach, and he’s telling you why the player went out on loan.’

    Aside from his youth, Mattéo has a particular energy. He has a desire to win and he’s a natural leader. We imagined that would be the case but that it would happen over time. Seeing this in addition to his performances, we have an energy that everyone can envy. It’s contagious and it’s a very important value in life.”

    “Experience is important for everyone but, for young people, sometimes difficult events are not good experiences. There’s also personal capacity on the mental side. Guendouzi, for example, he’s 22-years-old but he acts like he’s 30. The most important thing is maturity.”

  3. Pedro


    If you shit your pants in the office because you are drunk, you’re going to lose your job. Doesn’t mean you are going to do that in your next job.

    Guendouzi metaphorically shit his pants so hard, there was no way back, and that’s why he’s in Marseille right now. Good on him for changing his ways, but it was absolutely the correct decision to move him on, because his bad behavior spanned 3 coaches.

  4. Mk12

    Streets won’t forget how Pedro was questioning Saliba’s Mentality for turning down moves to Newcastle and Brentford , in favor of a move to Marseille under Jorge Sampaoli. LOOOOOL!

    Look at him now – he’s a champions league level player and a French international. Big up to Billy Saliba! Hopefully he can kick on and put Ben White rightfully in his place – on the bench.

  5. kjelli

    Ok, for Saliba the next challenge is to be our VVD and go for the ballon de or nomination
    and keep his place in the French team..

  6. Pedro

    Streets won’t forget that this was my long read take on William Saliba moving to Marseille.

    Newcastle would have been a better move, Brighton even better, but the most important thing was minutes.

    So no pivot here, I said the loan move was to get 3500 minutes, he got 4500, now he comes back a better player.

    ‘If Saliba is good enough, he’ll be back.’

    Nice try chaps, but this is a Pedro W again.


  7. BacaryisGod


    Yeah, but we all know (and love) Pedro enough to realize he rarely engages or addresses when he was clearly wrong but will just look for another angle of attack.

  8. Aaron

    Start him straight away, yesterday!

    Can only improve our regressing defense.

    Onto other topics, have we signed anyone yet?

    Wake me when this occurs….

    Dilly dally the AFC way.

    Sold anyone yet?

    That is right we are still in the Covid nightmare, inflationary economic period, have to meet the ffp rules, teams can’t afford our average players on mind numbinly high wages, blah blah blah.

    All the while uefA continues to plague the world with their endless, meaningless games all at the expense of the players lifespan, and on the clubs $….

  9. BacaryisGod

    Here (again) is what you wrote:

    ‘My biggest concern out of this whole move is the lack of ambition from the player. Ben Knapper is the loans manager and he’ll have pulled together a group of clubs for the player to choose from (he had offered up Rennes last season according to GFFN). If reports are to be believed there was interest from Germany, Italy, and England. Why would a player trying to break the Premier League go back to France again?’

  10. Thorough

    But he’s done that under 3 previous coaches already, right? What happened to ‘the only predictor of future behavior is past behavior’. So I’ll just assume Guen grew up to be a complete pro overnight? I can live with that.

  11. Pedro

    Thorough, I suspect that Guendouzi was quite shocked that no major club in Europe took interest in him when we tried to sell him on and it might have shaken him into better behaviour.

    He’s had one good season without acting up, let’s see where he is in 2 years.

    What you can assume is that every single coach he’s had has complained about him, again, not a subjective opinion.

  12. Pedro


    Objectively, moving to Brighton or Newcastle would have been better for his development. Hence why Arsenal put those offers on the table. He chose Marseille, he’ll have to come back, learn English, adapt to the pace of the league, and acclimate to England.

    That comment doesn’t invalidate the success of his loan move and the experience he’s gained there.

    Read the whole article, not just the bits you think give you a small win here.

  13. salparadisenyc


    That type of versatility would of had us in the Champions league with ability to full ball back as well.

  14. WengerEagle

    Lol Bale really is taking the piss and clearly still has that elite talent.

    Picking up £300k a week and got to basically have a couple of years long holiday in sunny Madrid and play Golf.

    Still a difference maker for Wales and on the Spurs loan.

  15. azed


    Before you begin the gloating, remember you said he went to France rather than an EPL club because he wanted the easy route or something like that.

  16. Pedro

    Azed, he should have taken a Premier League loan move for sure. Doesn’t invalidate what he’s done in France though.

  17. salparadisenyc

    This is like watching a Spurs match this season, under the cosh for entire 45 yet come out on top with deflected goal.

    TBF to Bale solid strike but it’s not going in without Yarmalenko’s head on it.

  18. BacaryisGod

    Stop digging that hole Pedro.

    You write ‘Objectively, moving to Brighton or Newcastle would have been better for his development’ but you also have said his loan to Marseille was one of the greatest ever recent loans (or words to that effect).

    How much European experience was he getting at Newcastle at Brighton? Once in a while, it’s ok to be wrong but like I said earlier, I do admire your balls in going after other posters on Saliba when you’ve been so wrong about him.

    However, I’m 100% with you on Zinchenko. A dream summer for me would be him, Gabriel and Tielemans. Expect we’ll only get 2 or the 3 at best but all three would enhance the squad.

  19. SQ10

    Don’t understand why everyone’s giving Pedro beef here. A loan move to Newcastle or Brighton would have been better if you take learning the language and the league (which is of a higher standard than the French league) into account. In general it’s the best loan move for any Arsenal player. But what I will say is this was a special unfortunate circumstance where Saliba had lost both of his parents and probably needed to be around friends and family in his home country, where he would have had time to grieve with loved ones away from the spotlight. I think it was exactly what he needed and it has worked out very well for all parties.

  20. WengerEagle

    I’m just glad that Saliba actually wants to play for us still. Clearly is a very good player to win caps for France with all the elite CB competition and win YPOTY in Ligue 1.

    6″4, good recovery pace and composed on the ball. A baby in CB terms at 21.

    Gives us a decent CB rotation now and yes, I would absolutely keep Holding as a squad player. Feel that he is underrated on here.

  21. BacaryisGod


    You’re right that it has a lot to do with the player’s circumstances. But as almost everyone agrees that the loan move to Marseille couldn’t have gone any better than it did, including an International call-up and a deep run in Europe, it’s strange that Pedro is still claiming a loan to Newcastle or Brighton would have been better for him.

    Every player is different. Wilshere and Willock thrived on loans to Bolton and Newcastle but Gnabry’s loan to WBA probably hastened his departure from the club. Reiss. Nelson has seen some uneven success abroad but AMN’s time at Roma has probably damaged his reputation.

    Much of the time it has to do with how a player fits with the manager and/or his loan team’s system.

  22. Crimson

    I’m expecting apologies from countless number of posters here! Saliba is here next year! I could name the ingrates that battered Arsenal and Arteta for his loan…. tempted, but we know who the negative twats are. The amount of utter bile typed about William has been redonculous.

    Tolisso on a free?

  23. DivineSherlock

    The win clearly is for the Saliba fans because they have seen him play and knew that he was a top tier talent . Arsenal as a club invested heavily in him knowing he was , just that Mikel decided he wanted Ben White for 50million . And also he is not the most experienced 21 yr old French CB , that is still Wesley Fofana . I just hope Mikel Arteta is wise enough to rotate all these talented players effectively .

  24. Pedro

    Bacary, it’s only strange if you don’t understand absolute basics of development.

    How can you possibly be arguing that a season in the Premier League learning the language, the culture, and the league wouldn’t be more beneficial, then have the temerity to make out that’s a strange angle?

  25. Crimson

    Bankz etc… need to get a life. The whole posting first is for the mind of pre-pubescent virgin teenager. Especially when they post nothing else.

  26. Dissenter

    You have been the most dismissive commentator about Saliba
    Spare me the whole Houdini act

    You never rated the lad, never thought there was anything special to him
    You even started tagging these advocating for him.

    Nice attempt to pivot though but you marked yourself based on how far off you were.

  27. Pedro

    Diss, 2 years left on his deal and they gave him 1000 Premier League minutes this season. Rob Holding levels of game time.

  28. salparadisenyc


    With amount he’s played for City anything possible if right offer comes along. That kind of talent needs to be balling, not sitting on the sidelines adding depth with only opportunities full backing.

  29. englandsbest

    How pathetic they are. I am talking about those who constantly get things wrong but never admit it. No credib;illty at all. The moaners and groaners, the anti-arteta brigade. The pussycats who think they are hardened cynics.The know-it-alls who know nothing.

    The ones who sneer when told Arteta is honest, forthright, sraightforward.

  30. Pedro

    Diss, I’ve been the most dismissive of the ridiculous carry-on about a loan.

    This Houdini act is all the people that spent the season crying about him leaving are now having to pivot to things like ‘but you said Newcastle would be better’ or ‘You never liked him’

    Nonsense attempts at shifting attention away from one of the most ridiculous fan induced dramas of the season.

  31. WengerEagle

    What a brilliant save.

    Never get why they always show save replays in slow-motion, it does the GK a disservice and makes the save look like one they should make.

  32. Dissenters

    Just seen one of the hordes from spuds having a good game gets my blood boiling
    … that’s Ben Davies, by the way

  33. Brian Muff

    Ha! So many experts on here in recents months telling us Saliba will never play for us.

    Fucking brilliant.

    Now hiding behind comments Pedro said – that don’t even contradict his valid vitriol today. Muppets.

    Pedro’s been adamant for months that he will return, and in spite of all the experts on here saying otherwise.

    Come on guys, you got to own up to this one…admit that you never expected to read Saliba’s statement today….kinda ruins the anti Arteta narrative you’ve been pumping eh.

  34. MidwestGun

    Damn this Ukraine match was an epic battle. leave it to Bale to crush the dreams of Ukraine.. Anyhow.. If we have a chance to sign Zinchenko… yes please.

    From my homer USA stance much better to play Wales in the opener then Ukraine who would have been on a emotional … high that would have been hard to overcome.

  35. Samesong

    It’s so sad how many Pedro arse kissers 💩 on this site. When Pedro is well capable of holding his own.

    Proper cheerleaders.

  36. Crimson

    Sad for Ukraine. Especially as it was an obscure goal. And definate penalty. Would of been amazing to see them at the world Cup. Agony in the rain. 🇺🇦 🇺🇦

  37. RP7

    Not a huge fan of Saliba. Too leisurely, almost too relaxed. The pace in the EPL will kill him initially.

    Better to start him in the 3 cups. Even Championship clubs play more energetically than most teams in France.

    Also not sure he is more suited to back RB than White, who is faster.

  38. Danny S

    Arteta bet 50m on white.

    Whites right leg will need to be hanging by a tendon for Arteta to replace him in the side with Saliba, regardless of how well the lad does in cup games.

    I expect we will get 20-30m for Saliba next year when he has a year remaining.

  39. RP7

    Great to see Wales win.

    Too bad Palestine is not being cheered on as much as Ukraine. Apartheid, half the territory invaded and annexed, random killings, rapes, and evictions, daily humiliations.
    But I guess they’re just some Muslims. Don’t even have blonde hair and blue eyes.

  40. Aaron

    Muppet here;

    The question is will he play him or start the same regressing defense? Or start Tam and Tierney who are just coming back from major injuries…..

    When desperate Mikel will change his mind, but often it way late in the afternoon.
    Same way with Eddie, ESR etc.

    Will he rotate the squad early?
    Better as world cup year and the players are going to be played into the ground.

  41. salparadisenyc

    CrimsonJune 5, 2022 19:22:57
    RP7. Sadly Palestine is not playing football right now. A whole different debate. Nothing about religion.



  42. Habesha Gooner

    I am glad Saliba is staying next season. Arteta has to give them all a fair shot. Whoever wins the battle can start. The loan went okay but he still run down his contract by a year. If he doesn’t get minutes next season, he will be sold. Let’s hope Arteta changes Saliba’s mind about staying at Arsenal and signing a new contract.

    I live Zinchenko. He is very good. I think he is more of an attacker than a defender. Even at fullback, he always plays forward. Defensively he is a little suspect. But I wouldn’t mind having him with someone like Tielemans. We would solve our midfield issues along with having an attacking dimension on the left.

  43. CG

    The Saliba saga is already and will continue to overshadow the forthcoming season.

    A totally needless distraction – no matter how its spun.

    Expect this one to run and run.

  44. salparadisenyc

    My kind of distraction having 3 first choice Center Backs to select from not to mention Holding a solid deputy if needed.

  45. UTarse

    So will it be a great W for arteta if Willy has a great season and refuses to sign an extension at the end of next season ?… just a thought

  46. Naija+soccer

    Very happy Saliba is staying. I was hoping he’d wanna come back and play for Arsenal. Let’s hope Arteta give him the chance that he has clearly earned (3 year wait), and he can adjust properly.

    If he does adjust and play well, I would like for him to stay at Arsenal and not get sold.

  47. Naija+soccer

    Gabriel and White is not a guarantee starting 2 yet, so Saliba should be allowed to show how he can contribute to us having a solid pairing at the back.

  48. Thorough

    The best move for Saliba was to go to Marseille because it’s the one that worked out. Newcastle or Brighton wouldn’t have helped him into the French national team, it definitely wouldn’t have made him YPOTY.

    Ffs one of the best talents we’ve ever had was Gnabry and he disappeared in England. If he had gone to the German league who says he wouldn’t have had a different trajectory.

    Let’s see how Arteta navigates this because it’s really slippery and sensitive anyhow you look at it

  49. WengerEagle

    Xhaka having a great game here, lol.

    Messi has 4 goals and Ronaldo should have had a 1st half hat-rick. Has to check the calendar to make sure that it wasn’t 2012.

  50. BacaryisGod


    ‘Not a huge fan of Saliba. Too leisurely, almost too relaxed. The pace in the EPL will kill him initially.’

    Possibly, but that was the same reason we allegedly passed on buying Van Dijk from Celtic for 11.5m.

  51. Vintage Gun

    “So will it be a great W for arteta if Willy has a great season and refuses to sign an extension at the end of next season ?… just a thought”

    This is the the big balled elephant in the bungalow.

    Where we fcuked up was not adding an extra year or two on his contract BEFORE sending him out on loan last season. It was a well raised point on here at the time.

    I’m a “Saliba Ultra” and I’m happy that he will get a chance to at least prove himself here. But if he doesn’t sign an extension THIS SUMMER I’d sell him pronto.

    Can’t be paying £30m for an 18yo CB only to lose him on a free as a internationally established 23yo. Especially if we would only have used him for two of them 5 years.

    So i think i’m gonna keep my bubbly on ice until Saliba “signs da ting”.

  52. The Real Vieira Lynn

    I’ll believe it when I see him wearing the kit at the beginning of the PL season….maybe this is all about maintaining his market value….until this organization starts conducting themselves in a professional manner, on a consistent basis, I will remain justifiably skeptical about all things Arsenal-related…personally, I want nothing more than for him to return to the fold, but the very fact that Arteta wasted a considerable sum on a player who plays the exact same position, just last year, raises some serious concerns about Saliba’s future

  53. kjelli

    If we can make three or five more clean sheets with Saliba next season the fans will love him
    I am just hoping he can carrie the ball through lines with confidence and ability.Him and Ramsdale
    are crucial for our 22/23 season and our Europa success..

  54. Naija+soccer

    Campbell, Toure and Gabriel are too jittery when defending and Saliba is too relaxed and leisurely. Guy took his team to second in the table, and won the YPOTY yet he’s too relaxed.

    Arsenal fans eh.

  55. Naija+soccer



    I like Gabriel and White but they are both work in progress, not guaranteed starters. Which means Saliba should be getting starts, unless of course Arteta doesn’t start him for ‘other’ reasons.

  56. R.S.P.C.Arsenal


    Thank fuck some one remembers we turned him and the other geezer who went to spurs for 24m
    Double deal all set up standard said

  57. Killroy-TM

    I knew that the interview Saliba gave with Telefoot would send Pedro into a frenzy just didn’t think he would invoke GOD in this by starting of with “God be praised” So lets scrutinize what Saliba said and everything else is conjecture, spin, interpretation and the equivalent of a snake oil salesman’s pitch.

    Speaking to Telefoot, the France international defender said:
    ‘I belong to Arsenal, I still have two years left.” That is factual he just can’t break his contract unless he is willing to buy it out, so he returns to London.

    “I will be back with Arsenal. I have played zero matches and I still want to show them my true face and have the chance to play for these fans and this great club.”
    What else do you expect him to say? He is a professional who is being mentored by agents that see mega bonuses from him for years to come. ALSO he wants to 1st play for the fans, followed by the conjunction AND this great club. That is very positive, showing loyalty and being professional to supporters.

    Now to the playing part. He has to sign an extension to his contract unless Arsenal is willing to loose loads of money on him. If he plays and doesn’t sign an extension he is free to talk to other clubs in 6 months after the end of the coming season. ALL Factual no spin.

    What is most important for him is to represent France in the WC since he had his 3rd call up and played in Friday’s game against Denmark. How will that be possible in November? He has to be a regular starter. This BS phrase “I will fight for a place in the starting 11 he NEVER said that. It was created b y BS merchants who post click baits.

    “But it doesn’t just depend on me. In any case, to leave like this, would be a shame.’”
    Key phrase “It doesn’t depend on me” and again he feels for the supporters by adding it doesn’t feel right to just leave like that. That is diplomatic and tactful thing to say.

    So now the pro and con takes.
    PRO: We finally get to see him play for Arsenal.

    CON: He gains very little from signing a contract right now before he’s ever been shown trust from Arteta. He’s also good enough that he can join clubs who are currently more successful than us relatively easily next summer if he doesn’t commit too early.

    A possibility but hopefully not a likeability. He could then sign for a Barca on a free, who have sold a training ground to the local government for 20 times it value so they’re loaded again, and then he wins 3 CL finals in a row with them.

    So all the spin and jubilation means nothing until he signs a contract. Telefoot has confirmed on Twitter, that Saliba is set to undergo an interview with Julien Maynard, where his future is likely to be a hot topic of discussion. As always with AFC it is wait and sea or we will be better next season.

  58. China1

    The sun is reporting that Jesus will cost 50m + 250k a week

    If that’s true that’s a horrific overspend on a player who we should be offering more like 35m and 150k for

  59. Dissenter

    There’s no way we are paying more than £25 million for Jesus

    We need to walk away from this deal if it’s more that 25-30 million. Let city deal with the mess
    There’s a feeling out there that Arsenal are a soft touch

    That’s why all these club keep testing and testing. They get players on loan who become their club player for the season….then they want a ‘renegotiation’ after the loan.

    We shouldn’t be funding the Haaland transfer by paying £50 million for a player with one year left on his deal.

  60. Dissenter

    The Sun is full of shot though
    The general gist is that we are offering £190k weekly. There’s no way we are playing £50 million, no effing way.-

  61. China1

    Better not be

    Because this would be lacazette levels of overspend which simply cannot be justified

    He has 1 year left on his deal. He’s good but not world class. His club have already replaced him and want to sell. There’s fuck all serious competition for his signature. We are arsenal, not Newcastle and should not feel obliged to pay ‘whatever it takes’ for such a player.

    If they can’t take 35m and 150k a week then walk away and they will come running in a matter of days

  62. The Real Vieira Lynn

    40m & 190k per is still too steep of a price to pay for Jesus…if this is the case, this will definitely hurt our chances in getting another Striker of consequence, with some GD height, during this window

  63. Killroy-TM

    We will always have to overpay to attract top talent because we don’t have CL football. It was that important to get 4th this season for attracting these type of players, but the generational one and the Director of Fantasy bottled it.

  64. Killroy-TM

    According to The Telegraph, Conte is wanting to sign a new center back, right wing-back, two midfielders, a forward and a back-up goalkeeper.

    Looks like they are in the same market for at least 3 players that we also are looking for, plus some back up players. Interesting to see who comes out on top of this Conte or the Pep lookalike postal boy.

    We can now also add an additional trophy to the youngest squad one, the avoiding relegation trophy!

  65. Mr Serge

    Kilroy spurs will not a buy a top forward unless that player is moving Kane or son, they will buy a back up they need a holder not a progressive cm as they just bought bentacour,
    We want a number one striker a number 8 cm and a left full back
    So no we are not up against them for any player imo

  66. Nigel Tufnel


    Was it Newcastle and Brentford he turned down? I had forgotten the actual English teams.

    I would have preferred him getting his playing time at either of those clubs over any French outfit. Much better experience against the rougher competition in the league.

    I don’t care what Pedro says now, but he would’ve been right to criticize Saliba for insisting on France. Playing great in England gets you in the French national team too.

    He’s probably ready anyway, but I would have pushed him for an English loan too if I were Edu.

    There was so much cretinous noise from the haters here all season about Saliba, that I was ready to see him gtfo of Arsenal.

    Now I look forward to seeing him play for us. His recovery pace the other day looked blistering.

    Now we’ve retained 2 players, we should start adding 2 or 3.

  67. Nigel Tufnel

    I just saw Pedro’s response. I agree Brighton would have been an amazing place for him to get his playing time.

    Anyone here really suggesting the level of competition in France is anywhere near England?

    So where is Pedro wrong?

  68. China1

    Vieira there’s no way we’re buying two CFs this summer

    If we are Eddie has to go out on loan which I think defeats the point of giving him 100k.

  69. Nigel Tufnel


    Good neutral comment on Saliba. Why does everyone have to have agenda here? Snipe at the blog writer constantly?

    I was sick of hearing about Saliba in mid-season, but I’m glad for the player and more for the club that it’s worked out for now.

    Kilroy and his only friend – who shall “not be underestimated”, will still be spinning it negatively.

  70. UTarse

    Yes apparently in the world of Some Arsenal fans, it’s better to play a season at Brighton rather than Marseille, whereas in the real world I would imagine most professional footballers would opt for a team playing in Europe and finishing 2nd in Ligue un. No matter which way you try and paint it, Saliba made the right choice.

    Why do certain fans have such an inflated opinion of the premiership ?

  71. Nigel Tufnel

    And as I continued scrolling, of course the doomsayers come out in force. Not even fairly good news on the day can make les miserables have some joy in our football club.

    I feel sorry for them.

  72. The Real Vieira Lynn


    3 points in that regards

    (1) the fact that we started with 3 potential options up top last season, in Auba, nevergoals Laca and the purple patch kid, it didn’t seem out of the question to expect two CFs coming into the fold, especially with Jesus’s flexibility from a positional standpoint and our Thursday evening European misadventures on tap

    (2) if it’s to be believed that we were genuinely pursuing Vlahovic, it’s hard to imagine how Eddie and/or Jesus would meet the same tactical objectives, thereby one could logically conclude that another Striker, with considerable more height, might be in the cards…otherwise, it would seem like MA’s plans aren’t nearly as definitive as we’ve been led to believe

    (3) finally, it appears as if we’ve been kicking tires with at least a few teams who currently employ Strikers that fit the above-mentioned height profile, even though we seem rather close to getting Jesus over the line, which suggests that either this is another classic Arsenal fan appeasement ruse or the very real possibility that 2 CFs are on our shopping list

  73. China1

    Vieira you’re right that it does seem we’ve been kicking tires with bigger strikers unlike Jesus

    But then the question is this, we spend £85m or so on Jesus and scamacca. How many games per season are we expecting each of our 3 CFs to start? If they’re rotating that heavily none of them will get a proper flow and stable game time. Start today, dropped tomorrow all season. That’s also a lot of money to spend in one area considering we still need to fix the midfield, LB etc.

    As for why we’ve been chasing big strikers and Jesus, I wonder the same thing. Feels a bit messy with us chasing Jesus who is a similar profile to what we already have AND a completely different profile on top. I don’t see a strong theme tactically running through all of this as it seems quite scattergun

    If we are buying Jesus to be a flexible rotation option who can play off the wing etc I’m not sure he’d really want that. He’s spent the last few years getting shunted around because he wasn’t good enough to demand a long term starting role as CF at city. Now he’d be coming to a weaker team and still shunted around to accommodate other players? Considering the transfer fee (were overpaying) and the salary (also overpaying) he’s surely coming in to be the main CF. And if he is that means Eddie is already getting demoted despite just signing a new contract. Another CF and I think we have ourselves an unnecessary mess.

    That’s why I’d rather we went for a different profile from Eddie in the first place. But if we really do sign Jesus I think it’s a waste of money getting another CF on top. For the same money it would cost us to buy Jesus as a winger we could get a better winger

  74. China1

    If we do sign 2 CFs in the same summer as we signed up Eddie, safe to say CF is the new CB and we’re planning to just overload on players

  75. The Real Vieira Lynn


    I definitely get what you’re saying in regards to both Eddie and Jesus…as for the former, I’m certainly not convinced that he can ever be the kind of starting CF option who can take a club with supposed higher aspirations to the “promised” land, which is why I would have never re-upped him, especially if Jesus was one of our primary targets…not to mention, if Eddie’s main sticking point, renegotiation-wise, involved the securing of assurances about playing time, then why would he sign unless those very assurances were in the offing…after all, we all know MA’s propensity to offer up assurances in order to get deals over the line…I guess the only other possible explanations are that he didn’t have quite as many suitors as some have suggested, which would mean that we vastly overpaid, or that the inflated wages were just enough that Eddie tempered his playing time demands…regardless, I just would have cut the cord and started anew

    as for Jesus, I would have no problem with him pursuing a course of action that would best remedy some of his City-based concerns, but I would suspect that he could achieve that goal without being the primary Striker…I think he cares infinitely more about being on the pitch, in any capacity, than continuing with the hodge-podge existence he endured under Pep…if this were the case, we could have allowed Eddie to seek greener pastures, bought Jesus in, with his versatility in mind, then acquired ourselves a far more prototypical front man…unfortunately that ship might have sailed whenever Eddie puts pen to paper, if he hasn’t already

  76. Old & Wise

    It would have been most preferable to have the Saliba prodigal return with news of him having signed a 2-year extension with a further AFC year’s option. All would have been acceptable to all parties. Saliba gets to experience the PL and prove to himself and any detractors, he has the potential to have a very credible career with the ability to back this up. AFC will be able to ask and receive a realistic fee from Rail Madrid, Barca, Man City et al. when history repeats itself again from the latter Wenger days to the Arteta regime.

    This would, of course, meant elevating his salary with bonuses and signing-on fee now, which would put a considerable dent in the under £100m TW kitty being mentioned by the money garnering, mostly fictional stories from the Internet and papers – the amount how true I have no idea, but I get the sense that there won’t be double that amount, though sorely needed, so perhaps somewhere in-between with further accrued player sales included?

    Youri Tielemans was in good from his initial move to LCFC, but last season he was poor and for me, looked unhappy. He would initially improve us and possibly add more Xhaka screamers from time to time, and be better in midfield than Xhaka was, but I feel he’s a ‘Top 6 to 4′ player and would not improve us enough to be title challengers.

    Jesus has become mercenary with his agent after being told he’s not good enough for an elite club: City.

    Considering the time he has been at City it’s likely he would be surplus to our requirements in a couple of years, especially if Bolagun or another Hale Ender steps up as Eddie is now. If we pay what Jesus what he demands, we will probably have to pay him to go if he flatters to deceive, which is the way Arteta is seemingly happy to lose £100s of millions in player/asset values for the club. What is worse the owners allow this because they leverage TW spends against the club’s assets. If Chelsea sold for £4+billion what would AFC sell for today? Close I would imagine, so the leveraging is a safer bet for Stanley.

    Not having Champion’s League has hurt us. To capitulate in the manner we did was exactly the reverse Arteta optics we could have hoped for. Quality players now and for the future have good agents who want the best for thier clients and their financial futures. Youri and Jesus are going nowhere with their respective clubs for differing reasons, but Arteta hasn’t notably brought on players in his 30+ month tenure. Saka would have happened without Arteta and will likely be overplayed next season as he was this season even though his formed dropped off.

    My main concern for this window is we have to buy at a certain bargain level – players that need to leave their clubs for varying reasons – because the players with the real quality that we should be after: the names of which have been mentioned often before, have been put off by their consigliere’s (agents) and teams of advisors to playing for Arteta and the level of players actually being signed. They want better and who could blame them.

    If true to form, we’ll still be looking in the close-to-sell-by-date aisles in the remaining 24 hours of the TW. Either that or playing chicken and blinking first as the TW clock runs down as we did with Partey.

    When all said and done top 4 is the target when the league starts. I imagine it will be Spurs’, United’s, West Ham’s and maybe a couple of unexpected clubs to overachieve with us all vying for a seat with the elite table to play Champion’s League football.

    Will Arteta come of age or will not be another season of excuses and tacky and disingenuous PR from the club saying next year is the year?

  77. Siddeeq

    We will have a 70m forward and a 50m CB on the bench while the midfield is as bare as lady gagas behind

  78. Bigper

    We don’t know if the saliba loan has worked out yet, if he has another good season then he will have his pick of teams next summer with just a year left on his contract, in which case the loan and treatment will have been a mistake.
    Hopefully he signs a new deal

  79. China1

    I just feel if we have signed Jesus to be anything other then the main striker it will be an even clearer example of overpaying

    We could get a specialist winger in for the same money or less and a lower salary who would probably do a better job there. We shouldn’t be paying a lot of money to shoehorn players into their secondary roles

    I’d rather we went for a big profile CF this time and if we still wanna do things to the attack get in a real winger – especially as Pepe is presumably leaving.

    But if we’re getting Jesus in he surely has to be the main CF so getting another CF seems like a big waste of money

  80. China1

    Like for me Jesus is a good, not yet amazing striker and a decent winger.

    Buying him proves our squad, no doubt about it. But does he take us to the next level? Not sure of that so far. Can he score 20 league goals next season? I’d love him to but I doubt it. If he plays on the wing will he outperform or even match saka? I doubt it.

    Jesus is good and as negative as I seem I do welcome him as a squad addition – but is this a clever use of limited resources? I’m not seeing it at all

  81. China1

    Which btw is the same thing I said of the Ben white signing give or take and one year on I can’t say his signing has been groundbreaking *so far*

  82. Habesha Gooner

    To be honest there isn’t anyone else that is better than Jesus in the market when it comes to Center forwards. After Vlahovic, Kane, Haaland and Mbappe, there aren’t a lot of top class players
    Osihmen is good but he isn’t a guarantee either. And he would cost 80 mil+.

    Tammy Abraham, Darwin Nunez, Johnathan David, Patrìck Schick, Gianluca Scamacca, Aminie Gouiri, Dominic Calvert Lewin, Richarlison: these are the players that are available after Jesus. A lot of them would cost at least 40 mil in transfer fees.
    There is a shortage of top strikers in Europe. Out of that list, Nunez and Gouiri stand out for me but they aren’t sure things either. And they aren’t better or more Premier league ready than Jesus. Even if he doesn’t score 20+ goals in all competitions (which I think is improbable), he will give us more than a lot of forwards. He is a pressing machine. And he is very technical in tight spaces. He will improve the rest of our attackers. Imagine a faster, stronger, more technically efficient Lacazette with a nose for goal. That is why we are right to go for him. And if he doesn’t perform to a good level, Eddie can always smash it like he has done at the end of last season.

  83. Mysticleaves

    Lol. What a post. Saliba announcing he’s staying cos he belongs to Arsenal and had 2 years left in his contract is supposed to be used to mock people? He’s reminding Arteta and the club the obvious. Play me now or risk losing me for free. It’s a dicey one. If he don’t play he don’t sign a new deal!

    So either he’s still sold this summer or we lose him for free cos Arteta sure won’t bench his golden White for Saliba.

    Saliba should never have gone on loan and White should never have been signed for 50m. Colossal waste of money and lack of eye for talent

  84. Ishola70

    lol I think some are getting a little lost regarding the Jesus transfer.

    We are not a CL club and haven’t been for years.

    Signing Jesus is actually notable for a club that have been CL starved.

    And of course he comes in as a first team player and Nketiah will be his back-up.

    That’s if he signs.

  85. Ishola70

    See some are warming to the idea of Zinchenko to the midfield now.

    tbh I’m not sure Zinchenko would be a great success at Arsenal but I see much better overall attributes regarding him over Tielemans.

    If it’s a toss up between Zinchenko and Tielemans then it’s Zinchenko every time.

  86. Pierre

    Let’s hope Arteta learns from last season and starts next season better prepared..
    Covid was blamed for our poor start but in all honesty, i don’t think things would have turned out a lot different without covid as pre season was a bit of a shambles.

    A settled starting 11, with a settled formation in the final couple of pre season games will see us go into the new season with positivity.

    We are normally given a tough start to the season in the fixture list , let’s hope this time we can avoid the top 3 in the opening 6 games as we normally have to play catch up .

  87. raptora

    I’m definitely warming towards the idea of Jesus coming.

    I also saw that Martinelli chose an interesting picture of himself, and in the background it was no one else but Jesus. They are having a banter for sure.

    I like the player and maybe a few days ago I was in two minds about it as he is the same profile of striker as Nketiah, but I do think that’s secondary as most of the time we will need our plan A and for the moment, we should concentrate on upgrading our plan A before we get to worry for our plan B. Normally teams don’t even have that good of a backup CF and just move a winger there like Spuds do with Son, Pool do with Mane, Manure used to do with Rashford and Man City just won the title rotating many different players in the CF position.

    In that line of thoughts, every upgrade on a player that we make this Summer, could make a huge difference at the end of next season. In addition, the games that we’re expected to play will be a lot, so there will be chances for every player to rise or fall depending on the way they develop. There will be enough games for Jesus and for Eddie.

  88. Valentin


    you are entirely right. Pedro cheerleaders are buying the koolAid. Saliba has just followed the script given to him by his agent. Says nothing controversial and keep your option open.

    Marseille still wants him but may not have the fund to buy him outright. So no need to burn his bridges with Arsenal. Real Madrid are also interested but wants first to know whether is. They don’t want to be burnt like they have with the MBappe pursuit. Also he is a low priority for them, so theyvmay decide to come back next summer. With only two years left on his contract and on the back of an excellent season, Saliba held all the cards. His agent just instructed him to publicly say nothing of note. So if he is sold he can pretend that it was the club decision even if behind the scene his agent decides to force the club’s hands.

    Do I think he will be at Arsenal in September? Maybe, but I doubt it. A loan to Marseille with an obligation to buy for £25 millions seems more likely to me . Do I believe he will sign an extension? No Why would he?

  89. Valentin

    Personally in view of where Arsenal is from football and financial perspective, I don’t see the attraction of the deal for Jesus, especially not at the numbers banded around.

    I think that ManCity know what they are doing. Pep played him two seasons as a striker and he was not pulling any tree. So they moved him to the wings They bought Torres as a winger and moved him centrally ahead of Jesus him. Last summer They then tried to get Kane. Last season they still rather play without a No9 than trust Jesus. They realised that they needed an upgrade and this summer they got it with Haaland.

    Jesus is the kind of decent, busy type of strikers but is not very clinical. He may be better than Nkethia at linking play, but Eddie is better at creating chances by himself and at scoring. In my view he is an upgrade on Lacazette, but he also lacks the physicality to hold up play.

  90. Un

    Listening t the podcast, the talk of Gnabry…..
    Can we dare to dream? Real Madrid have ruled themselves out. Let’s hope Liverpool don’t go in for him. Move heaven and get that man. We can take de jong or Savic next season.