BENZEMA TO ARSENAL?

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Well, it is very, very cold where I am. -20 outside. This is going to be one of those ‘should I have upgraded the furnace’ kind of weeks. I’m cold people. Hopes and prayers, please.

I tell you what is HAAAAWT. The ITK crowd is now saying that Ivan Toney is the choice of the club this summer, not a new narrative if you’ve been following Le Grove.

This makes sense for a number of reasons, the main one being that we can get him for about £60m this summer and free up cash to do some surgery elsewhere. The idea of raiding Serie A for £120m for Oshimen was always fanciful. Like it or not, Arteta sees Ivan Toney as the missing ingredient up top.

Personally, I agree. It’s been a long time since we’ve had a striker with that sort of aura. Maybe you have to go back to Adebayor for pure fear factor? Toney is great from setpieces, he’s a menace in the box, defenders hate playing against him, and if he can score 21 goals for Brentford, imagine what he’ll do in the Arsenal chances creation paradise?

We’re great at corners, we have a keeper that has a very successful past with him, the team is loaded with fast switch players that can pick out a dime from 50 yards. He’ll add something we haven’t had in our forwards since Giroud left for Chelsea.

He has an edge.

The biggest weakness of the signing is he is a NOW player. There is no sell-on clause. This is his last big deal. The positives are that he knows the league, he’s been to hell and back, and he’s absolutely desperate to prove that he is at the level.

This isn’t a sexy signing, but it could be very functional in a way that might surprise. Like a wallet you stick on the back of your phone. I’ve never done it, but I’d like to.

It could also go the other way and the level might be too high. He might not be able to live in a deepblock world. The weight of the shirt might hang too heavy on him.

I like the thinking though. You can scoff at it, but who else is out there that you could name as a better player? Not many. If an endangered species were in the footballing world, it’d be elite number 9s.

Talking about elite number 9s, Saudi Arabian football is going through its first mini-crisis. A haul of players are trying to exit at the moment because they don’t like it. Karim Benzema has no-showed to training a number of times this year, which could mean there’s a chance to loan move out to a team playing Porto in the next round of the Champions League.

Could that be Arsenal?

Could a player of his level be useful?

Is this the move that wins us the Premier League?

Probably not.

It’s one of those fanciful dreams you have when you play too much FIFA. The player is an outrageous talent, but he’s quite old now. 36 years old is a physical reality you have to face. Not many strikers in the Premier League are doing it at that age. He might do it in Italy, but in a team that needs everyone pressing at 100mph, I can’t see him working in our system. Even at 28, I’m not sure he was that player.

Always take your mind back to United finishing 2nd, then signing Cristiano, upsetting all the young players, then finishing outside the top 5. These old player loans are for the nostalgists. I don’t think we’ll be making a move like that.

Though it would be sexy… I remember being linked to Benzema before he moved to Madrid. What a player. One of the greats.

Let’s talk about Oscar Bobb scoring that incredible goal yesterday. It was a delicious ball from KDB, an outrageous touch and finish by an academy kid. Some Arsenal fans said it showed that we should be doing more to integrate kids.

My take? Look at what City do with their academy. It’s kind of genius in a very rich way.

They go out and find the best kids at every level. They pay them more than anyone else. So these kids earn elite money before they’re near the first team. They then give them the full Pep G coaching experience (via surrogates). These kids are trained to think faster and their depth of tactical knowledge combined with their talent makes the best prospects in the world to pick off.

They then mine them for the cream of the crop, like Oscar Bobb, who is already a full Norwegian international. This approach gives them a bank of luxury kids to sell on to the clubs that have the capacity to blood them young… and sell them they do. They’ve made over £263m since 2017 using this approach. James Trafford move to Burnley for £20m, wild money,  we won’t get that for Reiss Nelson.

If we’re going to be honest, this isn’t a new idea, this is exactly what Arsene Wenger did when he was at Arsneal. We paid elite kids more to come to Arsenal than any other club. I can’t remember which Liveprool manager complained, but one said they competed with Arsenal for Denislon but couldn’t match the package. This approach gave us Cesc Fabregas and helped us form Project Youth 1.0. Wenger used to brag that he’d given more professional careers to kids than any other manager.

City do this on steroids and rocket boosters and it’s working to a higher level. City sell a player for £18m, then Chelsea buy them for £58m. Jeremie Frimpong went to Celtic for £400k, to Leverkusen for £4m, and he might boomerang back to be reunited with Arteta for £40m. The production line is insane.

So when you’re kicking Arsenal for not being more like City, know what you’re kicking. One of the most ruthless operations football has every seen, doing things at the next level, with extreme financial power.

Also, going live at 1300 CT, 7pm UK time. Come join the podcast!

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Northbanker

Everton and Nottm Forest to be fined 6 points for FFP breaches 22/23. Who’d be an Everton fan?

Northbanker

Every club will be reworking their sums furiously now. It will suppress the transfer fee levels before long as no one can afford to buy anyone and take the risk now unless you have a sale to fund.

We certainly won’t be signing anyone without a profit on sale of a player.

Buckagh

Un
Not saying you are a racist or not an Arsenal fan, but it’s a stretch to say your views are held by a majority of English men, and I’m not an Englishman

Tom

Stop it already. Un isn’t a racist bigot, he’s just a proud Brit having a bit of a hard time with the dark skinned foreigners coming uninvited to his homeland, when they should be staying within the borders of the various former British colonies and protectorates they had the good fortune to be part of before the Empire’s untimely and most unfortunate demise.
And who could blame him?
It’s bad enough he had to put up with the “ dirty Poles”, let a lone the darkies.

andy1886

Everton and Forest will be dealt with swiftly. City on the other hand with their armies of expensive lawyers will drag it out for years. But it’s the same rules for everyone right? Nope.

jwl

Tom – you’re an anti Semite who gets his jollies from slagging off your mother here, so what kind of person are you if you analyzing people today?

Nigel Tufnel

There are loads of cretinous comments calling Un a racist all the time here. It tells you how many lowlifes without an original thought post here. There is nothing worse than people who label others racists in this world. True racists are banned from platforms. Real racists get prosecuted by the state. Racists get sacked by employers. If Un was a racist, or said anything dodgy along those lines, Pedro would have done something about it a long time ago….its simple enough to copy, paste, and report any offending comment. The fact that all you can do is scream racist… Read more »

Un

Tom 😂 You weasel. My Mrs is foreign Neither of my parents are English Voting to leave the EU or disliking far leftist virtue signaling politics (that includes blm and rainbow laces) make me a racist and has had my arsenal fan card revoked now. 🙈 Buck Half the country voted to leave the eu The majority of which were male and English The majority of that demographic votes right or centre. Even Russel brand is considered right wing and he’s a fucking labour supporter and called Nigel Farrage a pound shop Enoch Powell The Overton window blablablablabla I wouldn’t… Read more »

Un

Thanks Nigel

I suspect that my disapproval of the actions of a certain French footballer caught trying to extort/blackmail an innocent team mate has riled the blue haired types

Rich

Un is a top bloke as far as I’m concerned.

Tom

“Tom – you’re an anti Semite who gets his jollies from slagging off your mother here, so what kind of person are you if you analyzing people today?“

jwl, only two types of entities classify any criticism of Israeli government action and not the nation as a whole as being anti Semitic:
One is the Israeli government itself and its propaganda arm,
and two, the brainwashed simpletons like yourself.

Tom

Un😉

Marko

Don you’ve been through several monikers now due to you getting banned for saying insidious or flat out racist shit. You’re an absolute imbecile who brings down the conversation wherever you go.

Marko

True racists are banned from platforms.

He’s been banned.

Real racists get prosecuted by the state.

Grow up.

Racists get sacked by employers.

Online? Sure they do mate

Marko

Plus you do know that Pedro can delete comments right? So everytime Don’s gotten a ban and a new moniker he’s probably gotten vile shit deleted too. Anyway it’s not that shit that’s annoying about him but more you know he’s stupid and ruins the vibes

Mr Serge

Graham, Tom and cg my stance in life and on this blog is to never ever say anything good about those wankers down the road, but I will not at this time tell you 3 you are cunts for doing so, Ange the fat Greek is a likeable guy, however I do not think for one minute he will do well long term for them. I would defo not swap Mikel for him either.

Mr Serge

Weird my iPad won’t save my credentials but my android phone does every time I post

Northbanker

Serge – it’s an ioS compatibility problem – my PC saves the details; my ipad and iphone don’t

Northbanker

Can we stop the who is and who isn’t a racist please. Leaving aside the morality and legality, its a really childish debate and nothing to do with a football blog. Whatever happened in the past, leave it there.

Rich

Mr Serge

I like your stance on that lot down the road, and share similar sentiments.

Amazing that some Arsenal “fans”, will try to put down one of our players, as a way of elevating one of that lots…

And even dig up stats to try and force home their arguments..

I just don’t get it..

Karsa

CG gone?

Show me to the subscription.

Karsa

Spuds are only there to laugh at. No need to mention them otherwise.

Nigel Tufnel

Karsa,
I’m right there with you as usual.

Josip Skoblar

I’d like big Benz at Arsenal. He is lethal and a natural born scorer. This is exactly what we miss at the moment.

Graham62

Tough luck CG.
We have to accept/tolerate persistent propaganda on here and yet when you speak the truth you become a c##t and a Spuds fan!

Only on Le Arteta!

Nigel Tufnel

Marko is as dishonest as the day is long. Behaving like a typical biased journalist and presenting nothing of proof but smoke as facts to slander Un because he doesn’t like him. Presented not a single fact to call Un a racist… he simply “hints” that Pedro conveniently removed them all. Every single one. Marko alludes to a “ban” by Pedro…. yet a truly provable racist comment would not get a sin bin/time out… Pedro would make that permanent. Real racism is not equal to simply being annoying as we all find MG42, for example…. a real racist comment would… Read more »

Northbanker

Graham – grammatically it is L’Arteta!

Freddie Ljungberg

Nigel

Are you really this delusional? Don has been banned a half a dozen times by Pedro under different monikers, precisely for posting racist crap. Anyone that’s been here a while and isn’t as far up his own ass as you would know that.

Think this moniker is a record actually, he’s never been able to hold himself in check this long before, still a massive cunt though, just not letting the racism out as much. So, yay?

Marko

Regards to spurs I see nothing but them enjoying that new manager bounce. Nothing to fear long term from them

Un

Lads chill Jesus
I can confirm that I am not a racist
Utter rubbish
All my chat has been football related and if I may, I’d like to propose we return to that before chaos ensues
And marko
You’ve been banned as many times as me you doughnut
Did that make you anything other than the shit licker you really truly are?
Wasn’t me who began this rubbish
I just defended myself and laughed off these false allegations
As I’m entitled to do

Mr Serge

New post lads

Un

Freddie
Not true
Shit every time there is an international tournament you fuckers wade in on the English, without fail. Every single time. Living off some bull shit stereo type that was shot down decades ago.
Let’s not go into it, you know full well you’ll have your little g string pulled down, your bottom slapped and I’ll likely go in the bin for reacting

zomber

City should be beaten on their own turf: make them pay 50 mill in 5 consecutive years and share the amount among those who were hurt during their cheating years (missed titles, CL). As a side effect this penalty affects FFP so it will be much harder for City to buy and for the other teams it will be easier to do in the next 5 years. Their sin is spending awful lot of money, let the punishment be the same. And of course rip them off their titles