by .

Well good morning to you ALL! Or afternoon. Maybe early evening? Who cares.

The Youri Tielemans deal has taken an Aaron Ramsdale-ish turn. Arsenal, is reportedly happy to wait a year for the midfielder and get him on a free.


Leicester think they are dealing with United here. That we’ll just spew £32m for a player who only wants Arsenal. Not this Arsenal. We’re playing games with a club that can’t afford to exit this summer with Youri on their books. The fans get ants in their pants, but simple facts are this: We don’t need Youri right this second, so we can take our sweet time until there’s a horrible karma injury at the weekend. JUST JOKES.

We’re not leaving this window without a midfielder. No chance. I think there is a VERY high chance that midfielder is YT.

The wide forward? I’m not sure. Nico Pepe doesn’t seem close to any club. Galtier at PSG hasn’t moved on him. AC Milan haven’t made a move. Sevilla are waiting there with a ‘PLEASE LET US JUST HAVE HIM FOR NOTHING’ shaped begging bowl. It’s pretty bleak, because Arteta has no interest in the boy and at 26, he has his best years ahead of him. He has to take a move. Sitting on your ass for a year ain’t it.

There have been some links with Tonali of AC Milan. Chatter of £55m leads me to believe that the Italian club just need to whip up a market for a player no one is talking about. I just don’t see us signing an expensive DM this window. If money were no object, certainly, but personally, I think finding the next Xhaka is more imperative this season. Why? The position is easier to upgrade than the Partey one. Cheaper as well.

Hector Bellerin was spotted at an airport. His agents are in town to negotiate a very low fee. I don’t care what he goes for as long as we put a chunky sell-on clause into his deal so we don’t get flipped like fancy Chatham two up two down after Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen has had his way with it on Changing Rooms.

You lot were lying to me.

‘Oh, we don’t like high fashion things on Le Grove, give me some Khaki shorts and an ‘I’m with stoopid’ t-shirt’

Well, I’ve been told a lot of you bought one of these fancy shirts.

If you want to enter the conversation like JC, jump on this LINK and type LG10 on purchase to get a 10% discount. Word on the street is Art of Football are going to partner with us on some special clobber.

The big supporter news is that the Government has authorised Licensed Standing. The terraces are BACK baby. In America, they call them supporter sections, cheaper seats, noisier fans, a great gateway ticket for the next generation of fans.

Arsenal data seems to indicate that 16,000 season ticketholders responded to a survey, 70% of them were in favor of standing sections (11,200), and 40% wanted to transfer to that section (4,480). That’s a great number to create a bit of noise, it’s about 10% of home season tickets. Get some drums, some flags, maybe a cheeky tifo, and you are ROLLING. The additional noise would be welcome! I also like standing more than sitting.

I’d love to know what the deal is… if you remove 3,000 seats, is that 6,000 standing, or do you have to keep the capacity the same? One for the safe-standing nerds. Might need to get Tim Payton on the podcast to help us navigate.

Man United watch is becoming a fun pass time. They have pulled out of a deal for Arnautovic, not because he’s bang average, but because United fans got upset. They are going full steam into Adrien Rabiot to make their drab midfield slightly more drab. I didn’t realise they added Tom Huddlestone and Steve McClaren to the backroom team. Honestly, EtH seems to be going two-footed into creating the least inspiring United experience and I am here for it! Funny thing is when people warn me off slandering EtH. I get the same with Tuchel. I get the same with Conte. Look, they can’t all bang, I’m going to be right at least 66% of the time here.

Right, short one today, thank you for reading. I put up a technology chat podcast on the app if you’re into Web3 tings. It went up first on the Patreon, which is where the cool kids hang out, so go there if you want a piece of the action. ALSO remember to listen to the On The Whistle. It hit #11 for football in England and #13 for soccerball in the states. Thank you for listening. x

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  1. Rich


    It’s much easier to forgive minor indiscretions, or the odd indiscretions here + there, as long as they’re punished, than it is to tolerate a consistent lack of commitment.

    It’s easier to forgive players who aren’t good enough, or inexperienced, than it is to forgive senior players who demonstrate on a daily basis, that they don’t give a fu*k.

    Whatever anyone thinks of Xhaka, he’s a model professional who’s emotions on occasions have got the best of him

    Give me a player who cares too much, over a player who doesn’t care enough, every day of the week, even if I’d rather committed players who can actually control their emotions.

    Arteta’s first job was to fix the dressing room, get every single player onboard the ship with the right level of commitment, the moment the club never backed Emery, his control of the dressing room evaporated, the moment the club wrestled control away from Wenger, his grip started loosening.

    It’s taken a while to get us to this point, and mistakes have been made on route, but this now looks like a squad who all have a good level of commitment.

    We’re now close, just 2-3 players away from having the required depth + specificity to install a defined way of playing across 60 games.

    We still lack the maturity of the top 2, but Klopp went through similar issues as well for a while, Liverpool used to start quickly, then fade late in games, and that’s the best manager in the world.

    If we want to create a dynamic + competitive internal environment, then we have to create a meritocratic system, once managers keep rewarding players who can’t follow simple rules, then discipline breaks down across the squad.

    There’s a huge difference between a lack of discipline, and players who make mistakes.

  2. Mysticleaves

    They sold Fati, Gavi, Pedri and Araujo? Their future is in tact. They need to get it right now. That’s why they are buying up proven ready-to-bang players.

    Barcelona and Arsenal have different projects and are in different leagues with different strengths and make up.

    Their only competition also is Madrid so they are top top. Even if they finish 9th twice in a row, they will still attract the best players cos their way back to the top is only ever blocked by Madrid.

  3. raptora

    Barca are a team that need to be successful. Their reality is different to ours when after 8th and 8th we just go on with our 3-5 year plan to just come back in top 4.

    Barca want to win trophies and the players they bought are strong players.
    I’m not even going to bother comparing the players they got for 150m to the ones we got 1 by 1 but it’s obvious that they’ve bought better players.

    Kounde 23, Kessie 25, Christensen 26, Raphinha 25 have a decent chance to play for Barca in the next 4-5 seasons. All very high rated and relatively young.

    Then a couple of experienced player in Lewa and Alonso.

    The only questions that should matter are:
    Is this summer better than the ones before? I’d say yes.
    Do the players improve their team? Absolutely by a huge amount imo.

    Then it comes to targets and goals.

    If White is worth 50m we saw what a super talent looks like in Saliba. It’s night and day really. It’s 50m that we could have spent much, much better. Might be good enough to be 4th choice CB in a title winning team.

    Same way Tomiyasu is a decent RB but a top class team will have a top class RB and he will never be one. And Tomi was brought here to start every game, he isn’t good enough for a title winning team. For a top 4 team maybe.

    Ramsdale is nowhere near the likes of Alisson and Ederson. Emi Martinez is a better keeper that we sold for less money that we paid for an inferior keeper. Not good enough for a starter in a title winning team.

    You say that Odegaard could be a 80m player one day? Well I’ll make a prediction and say that he’ll never reach this high ceiling you seem to think he has. That’s Bernardo Silva money. He’ll never be that good, ever. Rotational option in a title winning team at best.

    Tavares is a good punt, low transfer, no issues there as he wasn’t brought to start anyways.

    Sambi – money down the drain. 15m was Anguissa ready to start in every single game from the get go. He might come good someday, he might not. He showed he wasn’t good enough to start for us last season and he had a big role in us missing top 4.

  4. Crimson

    Santi Cazorla: “When i came to Arsenal, i did not speak the language, Mikel and his family helped me a lot. If I am giving the opportunity and he believes I can help him, it’s something i would not mind.” ❤❤❤

    Would be the best signing of the window! I love that little man. How cool to see him back.

  5. Samesong

    Who is better than Lewandowski in the Premier league even at 34? Not talking about price but footballing ability.

    Halaand possibly Ronaldo?? Can’t think of anyone else?

  6. Samesong

    We should of been all in for Paulista from Portugal that guy would of been great next to Partey or as backup 20 Mill Look how he played against Liverpool.

  7. raptora

    I said this about Barcelona’s Summer window:

    “The only questions that should matter are:
    Is this summer better than the ones before? I’d say yes.
    Do the players improve their team? Absolutely by a huge amount imo.”

    I’ll say the exact same for us this window.

    Zinchenko and Jesus are 2 absolute beasts that are already winning games for us and will keep doing so as they have instantly joined the likes of Partey, Saka, Martinelli and Saliba as players good enough for what I expect and wish Arsenal to become – a consistent top 4 team that challenges for the title every other year with good runs in the UCL and FAC.

    Vieira comes with a question mark above him but I’d be willing to give him the benefit of the doubt even if the £31m is quite the investment.

    If we bring a class CM this window could be the best in quite a while – 2012/13 comes to mind when we bought Santi, Podolski, Giroud and then Monreal in the winter for a combined £50m.

    Best Summer in at least 10 years doesn’t sound bad at all.

  8. Pascal Stepanovs

    Auba left every club he’s been at under a cloud yet some people are still saying he did nothing wrong and Arteta just wanted him out as he didn’t like him. Some people’s agendas are laughable

  9. Rich

    Comparing Barcelona to Arsenal isn’t a fair comparison.

    They have a monopoly with Real Madrid for broadcasting revenue in Spain, and have still ended up over a billion in the red….

    The PL distribute the money more evenly, which is the right way to do it.

    We’ve had to deal with City, United, Chelsea, Liverpool, and also the Spuds who’ve spent similar money

    We’ll now have to deal with Newcastle as well, the PL and the race for the top and European places is much more competitive.

    Barcelona + Real Madrid are pretty much guaranteed to get top 4 each season, same with Bayern Munich, Juventus + PSG, who’s revenue streams dwarf that of their closest competitors.

    Our circumstances are entirely different, it’s not in anyway a fair comparison.

    I agree that Raphinha, Kounde, Christensen are good signings, I don’t know Kessie

    I would take your word for it, but your track record with identifying talent, or understanding career trajectories, is absolutely non-existent.

    €45-€50 million for a 34yr old on a 4yr contract is nuts, even if he does well originally, that’s a huge gamble they’ll extract value across the course of that contract.

    If you don’t understand what our policy is around adding value, and reducing wages?…

    Signing squad players earning less money who are young, so it’s easier to churn our squad, I don’t know what to tell you…

    Regarding Ramsdale he’s just turned 24, Alisson didn’t sign for Liverpool until he was almost 26, that was off the back of one good season, Martinez was still slumming it on multiple unsuccessful loans until he was 27.

    I don’t know what level Ramsdale can get too? But he’s still infinitely better than you made out to be, with your mass hysterics last summer, predicting bottom half finishes….

    You go back and for like a yo-yo regarding Odegaard, you love him one week, then the next week you think he’s ready for the scrap heap.

    Here’s the thing, he’s 23, if he was anywhere near the finished article 12 months ago, Madrid wouldn’t have sold him to us for £29-£34million, and we wouldn’t have got a free shot at him with no European football.

    De Bruyne + Salah we’re both sold by Chelsea at similar ages, Grealish was a bit part player at Villa.

    Van Dijk was playing in the SPL, Mahrez was in the second tier of French football, Kalvin Phillips was playing in the Championship

    Luis Diaz was still playing in Columbia at 22, Gnabry took multiple loans, as did Harry Kane.

    Regarding Ben White, we overpaid, but that’s not unusual buying in the PL

    But it was a sharp signing, because it didn’t block Saliba, White can seamlessly play 2 positions, and to remain competitive across 60 games, we’ll need quality in depth + specificity, particularly in our back line.

    Cancelo didn’t sign for City until he was 25, and took a season to settle, and that’s one of the best players in the league, Zinchenko started the CL final ahead of him against Chelsea.

    Our patience can’t last forever, but your understanding of where we’ve been, and how we get to where we need to go, is non-existent

    You just jump in with lunatic knee jerk reactions, and struggle with the bigger picture.

    It’s not hard to see what style of play we’re trying to implement, the type of full backs we’re targeting, which fits into the midfielders + wingers Arteta is going for.

    You can disagree with the plan, but the plan couldn’t be clearer, our transfer strategy over the last 15 months has been on point.

  10. TheBayingMob

    “If kept at Leicester he sees out his deal and walks on a Bosman, Leicester earn nothing and by next May is only 26 he will have plenty of offers.”

    While true, the player also runs the injury risk which is huge; he gets a bad one any time after Xmas then it will turn out that hand of cards he’s holding is worthless … risky … best to compromise, make the move happen and get one 4-5 year earner …

  11. Ishola70


    “Zinchenko, a superb first half when he wasn’t put under pressure defensively , struggled a bit 2nd half against a physical Ayew who can be a handful, the ball over the top was a problem.
    I’d like to see him in midfield as he is superb on the ball in tight spaces, a good crisp passer of the ball, an intelligent footballer.
    Playing in midfield will take out the negative aspect of his game , which is one on one defending.”

    Totally agree Pierre.

    I was questioning his defending one on ones after the match against Crystal Palace and of course it didn’t go down well with a lot of posters because he is a new player.

    But we all see his positives. He is actually good regarding anticipation and nipping in front of players to win the ball but when isolated in a foot race or real physical one on one it looks as if he may have problems in this respect.

    Like you would like to see him in midfield and of course in place of Xhaka would do.

  12. Tom

    We should send all our underperforming/not ready players out on loan to Marseille.
    After one season in the farmers league they’d come back the world beaters.

  13. The Bard

    I’ve only watched the 1st two episodes of the Amazon doc. Pretty dull fare to be honest. Usual tropes and banter, nothing remotely insightful. I dont have a problem with Arteta getting rid of Auba. If you’re on
    huge wages and you are the club capt turning up on time is the minimum requirement. I doubt if he had to be at the club at 5am more like 10am.

  14. Tom

    “I doubt if he had to be at the club at 5am more like 10am”

    Less traffic at 5am though…..not to mention a 2 million quid Ferrari tends to create more traffic at 10 am.

  15. China1

    Rap how can you say Sambi was money down the drain but concede he might come good.

    He was something like 17m. Hardly some expensive money thrown at an old overrated crock or whatever

    He was one of the best players in the Belgian league and a team captain at a crazy young age with glowing reviews from his peers and manager, good attributes on paper. Low risk high reward at that price.

    He also had some pretty good games last season as well as some poor ones. Considering his age and price I’d say he was a clever buy. If he fails he was a cheap failure. If he succeeds he’ll be a huge bargain. If he turns out nothing more than el menu’s long term successor as a squad player who makes up numbers then he’s good value for the price.

  16. Rich

    Don’t know if Tonali is any good?

    Positionally it’s might make sense, he can apparently play as a single pivot, and as a No8.

    Would give us fluidity + versatility in midfield, he’d get minutes when we rest Partey, and he’d get minutes playing ahead of him as well.

    AC Milan apparently want €55 million, Tielemans seems like the safer bet in terms of adaption time + experience, and would likely be cheaper.

    Tielemans has played the deeper role, but I’m not convinced of him there, he’s more of a No8

    I think we’ll sign a midfielder, there’s finally a bit of chatter around interest in Niles, and a loan for Sambi, which would be beneficial for his development

    Giving us either a more mature internal replacement for Elneny next summer, or a chance to turn a decent profit if he has a good season.

    Maybe we should sent him to Marseille?…

  17. Graham62

    Barcelona and Real Madrid get protected by UEFA and FIFA.
    I guarantee that if we had two teams in this country that were run along the lines of these two clubs, especially Barcelona, they’d be banned from all European competitions and penalised heavily.
    Barcelona should be held accountable for their mismanagement of the club but because they are UEFA’s baby, they get away with things.

  18. Dissenter

    “Auba left every club he’s been at under a cloud yet some people are still saying he did nothing wrong and Arteta just wanted him out as he didn’t like him. Some people’s agendas are laughable?

    .. not long after he persuaded the board to approve a 3 year 350k weekly deral for the said player.

    Let’s not pretend Arteta was spotless in all this
    Like you wrote, Auba’s behaviors were well known.

  19. Graham62

    If Haaland stays fit, he’ll get 40+ goals this season.
    Pep won’t play him in all the games either.
    Guarantee he’ll score at least 3 against Bournemouth.

  20. Ishola70


    “Tielemans has played the deeper role, but I’m not convinced of him there, he’s more of a No8”

    Thank you.

    That’s what I have been saying all along about him.

  21. Spanishdave

    People having to find an extra £2000 this winter to stay alive and a 20 yr old is demanding 100 k per week, sickening.

  22. Rich


    Does beg the question why we sanctioned a 3yr mega contract to a 31yr old, and kept him on as captain for so long, if his professionalism was in question?…

    Maybe it’s easier to tolerate when he’s scoring 20+ a season, and winning us games on a consistent basis

    But when he’s no longer influencing games on a consistently, it’s a much tougher pill to swallow.

    Either that or he fell into the comfort zone after securing his new contract, he won’t be the first or the last player, who’s standards + effort drop once the ink has dried on a lucrative new contract.

    I preferred Wenger’s policy of only 1yr extensions to outfield players over 30.

    If Aubameyang signs for Chelsea he’ll be dangerous, Tuchel knows how to get a tune out of him, and he’ll be playing + behaving as if his next big contract depended on it.

  23. Tom

    What Haaland will do is create another problem for clubs who used to high press City in the past.
    He probably would’ve scored five against Bielsa’s Leeds who played a suicidal high line most times.
    Haaland gives City another dimension they didn’t have before.
    Still, he’s ugly as hell, and I hope he flops.

  24. raptora

    Sambi is money down the drain unless he becomes a 50m player in the next couple of seasons for us.

    The likes of Anguissa 15m and Bissouma 30m are 26 yo players.
    Sambi is gonna be 23 yo in a couple of months.

    They would have provided us with much better quality for either cheaper (Anguissa) or for a bit more money (Bissouma).

    To make it clear, Sambi started 3 games in the EPL from December to May, that’s 3 games out of 26.
    Home draw with Burnley and 2 losses to Brighton and Southampton.

    It’s far too simplistic of me to put all the blame on him but it’s obvious how important having a solid midfield is. We were not in control in midfield and we dropped absolutely vital points that proved to be the difference in the top 4 race. Elneny started in the next games and we instantly became a better team.

    The fact that Sambi started the season as a 3rd choice CM but by the end of the season found himself behind Elneny as well, says about his season a lot more than I can ever say.

    We are talking about a position in the team that is not as expensive as a CF or a winger or a CB even. The top players in this position in the league like Rodri and Partey were bought for 50-55m.

    Now apparently he is better in Xhaka’s position and in the games he did alright, he was partnered with Partey who was holding his hand and I assume it wasn’t as hard as playing the pivot midfielder that apparently Arteta thought he could play as he used him there in the games that I mentioned vs Burnley, Brighton and Southampton and we won a total of 1 pt.

    Then the issue is that we needed someone who can play both next to and in the place of Partey. Not someone who is terrible in the DM role. The likes of Anguissa and Bissouma for example, can play both DM and CM with ease. Hence money down the drain.

    We needed someone to sub Partey when there’s a need to and Lokonga is not that guy. He might become a relatively good CM but unless he becomes a 50m player, we lost points in 3 super winnable games because he just couldn’t perform in the DM position.

    Excuse me but if he can’t displace Xhaka and Elneny being 22 yo and now almost 23 yo, then wtf is his potential? Especially when we want to have super talents in our club, we had the likes of Cesc, Ramsey, Wilshere and co being superior to 95% of all EPL midfielders at the age of 19-20. I think our standards have dropped way too much.

  25. raptora

    Rich: “Tielemans has played the deeper role, but I’m not convinced of him there, he’s more of a No8”

    Yup. Reminds me of a certain Sambi that forced us to play Elneny.

    Tielemans solves nothing in DM.

  26. Dissenter

    It was widely reported that Wenger was not comfortable with the Auba deal. He was on the way out so the club duid it anyways

    Aubameyang’s bling-bling lifestyle and his tardiness in training were well known within football. Wenger famously declined a change to sign him when he was in St Etienne, back then we used to have the first denial of most of the prospects the French scene
    Had Arsenal asked every manager who managed Auba they would have told us what we eventually ditched him for after giving him a mega contract.

    The Athletic said we had to pay Auba off with about 7 million cash and 230k salary weekly contributions [to his Barca wages] for 6 months.

    I’m not giving Arteta that much credit for resolving a situation he helped create.

  27. Nigel Tufnel

    Nice that you like Jesus and Zinchenko, but putting the most negative spin possible on almost everything else. I like Richs response.

    You’re too harsh on our current players. A downer to read today.

    The way you talk about our guys, you must be betting on a disappointing season? I’m expecting the opposite.

  28. izzo

    Look can we stop the Youri Tielemann talk. Leicester will want big money the closer it gets to the end of the window. We clearly aren’t interested or we would’ve gotten him already. Ya’ll need to stop wanking and crying over him and look elsewhere. At this rate I’ll take a player from abroad.

  29. Ishola70

    So everyone has decided Sambi is a No.8 because he hasn’t convinced as DM.

    Well when he was playing in the Belgian League the main criticism of him was that he needed to improve towards the opposition goal past the halfway line.

  30. Tom

    “Whenever people resort to personal attacks on here…. I fear for society.
    Another poster to ignore is Tom^ The most beautiful vagina.”


  31. Positive pete

    The danger of this playing the long game on Tielemans is if Manure lose out on DeJong which appears to be the case is that they’ll turn their attentions to Tielemans & give Leicester the silly money they want.Which I’ve a sneaky feeling this is Leicesters gamble.Chelsea will pay silly money for Fofana cos their desperate.( hope psg nick him)Both clubs have a history of paying way over the odds.They couldn’t care less.

  32. Nigel Tufnel

    Positive Pete,

    I have no doubt that Tielemans either doesn’t want United, or just much prefers Arsenal. So he could refuse to go regardless of the fee Leicester prefers.

    But I still worry that United might offer him a much larger wage package, which could sway him.

    Also, if Chelsea gets involved somehow.. that’s champions league ball and more salary. There are risks ..

    We are assuming Leicester asked around 35 mil, and we’re holding out for a good deal near 25. They might have asked for 50. We just can’t know…. but what an upgrade on Xhaka he would be.

    Plus, posters here thinking they’re tactical experts by saying he’s not a Partey replacement.. no thought that maybe we’d use a very different setup if Partey goes down and Tielemans played deeper?

    Such limited thinking, but they criticise managers like Arteta.

  33. Rich

    Sambi is 23, he might need a loan.

    Playing as a single pivot in the PL usually requires experience, it’s a position that rarely has young players occupying that role.

    The idea Sambi was going to play + deliver consistent performances in the PL straight off the bat, was always unlikely, he was always going to be a medium term punt, the club have briefed that on a few occasions, and Sambi himself said he played more than expected.

    Partey was out on loan for 2 seasons in his early 20s, and it took him a couple of seasons after that to become a first team regular at Atletico.

    Rodri came for big money to City, and it took him 12 months to settle, and that was after 3 seasons of relatively consistent football in La Liga.

    What we need is good squad planning, I like Sambi, but it’s about how we manage his career trajectory, either a path into our first team, or a good loan that increases his value, and makes him an attractive proposition in the shop window.

    Saliba, Tavares + Sambi style purchases aren’t meant to bang in the immediate, they’re signings designed to help us beat the market by identifying superstars, before they become superstars

  34. Tom

    Rich with another addition in his miniseries “where were they at 22 yo ?”….…

    Honest question Rich, you keep saying Arteta needs to deliver this year or face the scrutiny.
    What’s his absolute minimum, and what’s the price for not making the mark.

    My belief is so long Arsenal field the youngest squad in the Prem , which they will do, he gets another pass.

  35. Positive pete

    Good points re Sambi ,Tavares,Saliba( think he’s about to bang & big time).But if decent money was put on the table for Sambi now,would you take it?

  36. Ishola70

    I doubt Chelsea would go in for Tielemans.

    They are over-stacked in central midfield.

    Kovacic, Gallagher, Loftus-Cheek, Barkley, Gilmour, Chukweumeka, .

    I mean how many more do they want.

  37. Nigel Tufnel


    What’s so wrong about the facts Rich presented? You don’t have to agree with him about everything, but those details give a bit of colour to the subject.

    It irritates you so much that he points out the difficulty in adapting in the PL, and the fact that successive loans helped some players development?

    What’s wrong with that?

  38. Rich


    “ Where were other players at that age + experience”, Argument, is a good one, it adds vital context.

    Particularly when you take into account for positions, style of player, and where in the current team cycle we are as a club.

    Regarding this season, I’ll wait until Sept 1st to see where we land, and what type of business others do first, there’s still a lot of moving parts.

    If Arteta is backed with another 2-3 top players? And I think he will be, then he has to finish top 4, get much closer to the top 2, and be competitive in the cups.

    What I seen as legitimate reasons for our troubles over the last few seasons, are no longer relevant, our first team is now excellent, and our squad is getting there.

    I worry about fitness issues around 3-4 players, but with 2-3 top additions of Arteta’s choosing, he has to deliver significant progress.

    If we spend another £70-£100 million before Sept 1st, and he doesn’t get top 4, and show progress across the board?

    Then he should lose his job, he’s had enough time, patience, + resources.

    It was the right move to back him through the storm, we needed stability, but if he doesn’t deliver? The argument for giving someone else a chance, will be very strong.

    I’m backing Arteta, I’m willing him to do well, we’re well placed to have a competitive season, but like most managers, he’ll be under pressure, that’s not unreasonable, every PL manager is under pressure, and often clubs are too knee jerk.

    Barring a catastrophe, we should give him the season, ignore the bedwetters after deafeats, then reevaluate based on our progress, or who’s available on the market.

    I’m certainly not expecting anywhere near 13 PL defeats this season, and a significant increase on the 69 points we got last season.

  39. Nigel Tufnel

    I’m close to Richs view on expectations, but I phrase it as…. I expect 3rd place with points taken off City and Pool in those games.

    If we’re far off that, I’ll reevaluate on the manager. I’m totally backing him and Edu at the moment. We now see what they’re trying trying to do, and I’m thankful the owners have bought in.

  40. Ishola70


    “I’m certainly not expecting anywhere near 13 PL defeats this season, and a significant increase on the 69 points we got last season.”

    That should be a demand really with the money spent and that’s not even with two other additional signings.

    And if a team or two have great seasons themselves which means no top four again then that would be excusable.

  41. Rich


    I was always accused of being pro-Arteta + pro-Emery.

    I’ve been indifferent towards both, I just didn’t think either were our biggest problems, we had much bigger issues, and they were often being blamed for things that weren’t their fault.

    The idea that if we sacked either, that we were suddenly going to become this attractive team, who played excellent football, and swept all before them, just by changing the manager, was so far detached from our reality…

    Whereas if we sacked Arteta tomorrow, any half decent manager should be able to get a tune out of this team, we’d now be an attractive club for any manager with these players.

    We’ve had an unbalanced squad, of insignificant quality, with questionable characters, and our recruitment, squad planning, + contract management, was largely poor for a while.

    Tidying that up in a difficult market, has understandably taken time, and we’ve certainly made a few howlers on-route.

    Last season we were young, not just in terms of age, but also experience + cohesion, but our young players now have a good base level, and there should be more cohesion.

    I don’t expect us to manage games with the maturity of City + Liverpool, who are masters at injecting pace in and out of games, that’ll take time to develop.

    But we do need to see more maturity + improved in game management as the season progresses

    We’re starting games aggressively, which has been happening for a while now, but there’s a lack of maturity in how we control games once we’re ahead, and sustaining pressure in the opposition half.

    Arteta has got most of the tools to play the way he wants now across a 60 game season, I wasn’t surprised by our defensive fine margins football through 2019-21.

    If we’d have pushed up the pitch and tried to play a high pressing game with the players at our disposal, we’d have been setting our players up like lambs to the slaughter.

    We’ve now got a set of defenders that allow us to take more chances, play in the oppositions half, and forwards who’ll do damage once they get us there.

    My expectations have shifted, because the quality + balance of our squad is now very good, this should be an exciting time for this current team trajectory.

    At home I think we’ll roll plenty of teams, the MSM and many of our own fans have been sleeping on Arsenal, we’ve quietly assembled one of the most exciting young teams in Europe.

  42. Ishola70

    Fair points Rich.

    Just a word of warning to others though and deep down they probably know this anyway.

    Spurs despite being able to shoot themselves in the foot at any given time look to have a good playing system now and Chelsea despite the question marks about them which everyone recognises still have a deep squad so they will still be probably close to fourth come the end of the season.

    It’s going to be a battle still to get fourth but a battle that The Arsenal look like they may be up to. Nothing given though or taken for granted.

  43. Rich


    I agree, I expect whoever finishes 4th, will need more than the 71 points Spurs got last season.

    That lot up the road have got plenty of goals + aggression in their forward line, we were apparently looking at Kulusevski in January, which is very frustrating.

    If Ten Hag gets top 4, he should be up for manager of the season, United should have enough quality to get results, but I’m least threatened by them, particularly if Ronaldo stays.

    It should be two between 3rd + 5th, out of Arsenal, Chelsea + Spuds who get top 4.

    We’ve got 5 nasty away games in our last 9, so we could be in false position going into the run in, our points per game will very likely dip towards the end

    We need to secure as many points as we can early, because if the margins are tight going into the last 10 games, it’ll likely be us who misses out, and even if we’ve got a 10 point cushion, we won’t be as comfortable as it might appear on the face of it.

  44. Clinton

    Lot of talk—rightly so—about how we’d go about replacing Partey as a single pivot. Ben White has some Seagull experience as a 6 IIRC. Can anyone here comment on how he performed? My guess is without Partey for any length of time, our formation would of necessity change.

  45. Madhu

    Chelsea seems to be making moves on Barca players with the latest rumours linking them to De Jong. As said by other the rave for 3rd to 5th will be fascinating to watch. My expectation is that we get closer to 80 points and win a cup preferably UEFA cup. If we get close to 80 points we should be finishing with top 4 and even if we don’t it shows a significant improvement from last season. A UEFA cup win will cement our champions league dreams