Woooof… what a summer.
I doubted the mighty David Ornstein earlier in the summer, I didn’t think we’d be leaning into Gabriel Jesus, I went HARD against the Small Boy Summer™️
But what did I know?
HOW DARE I?
The King Of Confirmation reckons Arsenal have put a deal in place to sign the Brazilian forward and we are indeed building our future around the 5 ft 9 MONSTER.
In the cold light of day, it’s clear that we’ve prioritized a winner here. A player that works incredibly hard and sets the tone for the press. The light gamble here is whether he can be a big man after playing second-fiddle at City for a few years.
We have purchased a top, top player. He has a monster work ethic, he’s fast, he presses with the best, and he has that sublime skill where he can create something out of nothing. The big win? He has end product. When he’s started, he has 76 goal contributions over 99 games. That is outrageous. Up there with the very best.
He has to improve his finishing. He misses a lot of big chances and he’s been missing them over quite a few seasons. That said, 25 is still young enough to BANG as a striker. Ian Wright didn’t join Arsenal until he was, what, 28 years old?
Bigger picture is what this signing says to the rest of the squad. For me, it says Arteta and Edu are not fucking around hoping to make top 4, they are building a side to win the league. There’s a bit of a myth that footballers get upset about top-quality signings coming into the club. That is wrong. The players will be electrified that they get to play with a Premier League winner. They’ll be thrilled that the squad has a bit of depth. They will start to understand the seriousness of which Arsenal is now moving.
Arsenal don’t appear to be stopping there.
The Raphinha rumours are spicier than a Margarita at an Edu Summer BBQ. The clubs are close on fee, which sounds like it’s pretty monstrous, and people around the deal think the player is closest to Arsenal.
How are the folk that shrieked ‘our summer is dead because we don’t have Champions League’ feeling in the back seats? How is that Conte pull looking? He’s taking Ls all over Europe, Spurs have been bombed off by Gabi Js people, and they aren’t getting any luck with Raphinha.
You can have many opinions about Arteta, but one thing you cannot deny, the guy is creating a special project, he is reshaping Arsenal in ways no one thought possible, he has the fans singing again, he’s delivering us a blockbuster summer, and when he bangs the table… ownership listens. That is influence.
Attention will now focus on Lisandro Martinez, who I think will be a very good signing. He’s interesting because Arsenal seem to be ignoring the midfield at the moment. Lisandro can do all the bits Xhaka can, but he’s more defensive-minded, better going forward, and he has pace. It’s my understanding the club saw him as a left back, but who knows what is brewing.
Youri Tielemans feels like a signing that’ll be a bit of a war of attrition. My gut says he only wants Arsenal and that’s where the impasse is. Leicester are holding out for £35m that I don’t think will come. You can only be a baller negotiator if you have leverage, they don’t have it, so we’ll see how that plays out.
Sales will most certainly have to happen and I wonder if Arsenal are making all their moves helps because it shows we’re not desperate. A few seasons ago, everyone knew we were sell to buy, so everyone lowballed us. That’s not happening this season, so maybe we can be a bit more aggressive about our valuations.
Arsenal are crushing the summer so far. I wrote in January that we’d feel the benefits of discipline by waiting until the summer to do our deals. What have we learned?
- Better players are available in the summer
- Better prices are out there to be had
- More can be done because you are spending less
We put down £65m for Vlahovic, we missed out, now we have £20m extra to spend with is £5m short of what we’ll pay for Tielemans.
When all the folk were burning down the internet shouting ‘WE LACK AMBITION’ they were wrong. We lacked the gamblers mentality to spend big on players we might live to regret. Spurs went big, they made Top 4, but how will their decision look at the end of the summer? Two free transfers so far and a guy with a rain cloud over his career. They spent £75m in January, but how much of their progress was down to those two versus just getting Harry Kane and Son back into form?
Arsenal are moving forward with structure and brute force. Which squad looks most likely to challenge for the title in the next 5 years? It ain’t Spurs, I can tell you that, and I cannot wait for it to all unravel there.
Right, that’s me done. Podcast drops tomorrow. See you in the comments. Thank you for all the kind wishes on the baby. xx