Archive for July 19th, 2008


I’m off

The panel van is all packed and we’re just about ready to leave but I thought I’d stop by for a quick note because there was a pretty major announcement yesterday.

But first, let me say, Arseblog wrote a piece this morning that basically said it’s the manager’s job to “bring success” (code for trophies) to the club and that this “success” will only happen when we buy some “experienced” (code for old) player.

He’s wrong.

Well, sort of.  Success can be defined in many ways: for Derby last season success was achieved when they scored a goal.  For Arsenal, this year and every year for the next 10, success is not going into bankruptcy or (worse) being forced into a takeover by Alisher Usmanov.  Every single thing that the board and the management says and does indicates that they are running Arsenal like a business and will be very, very conservative when it comes to transfers in.  And so, I think we need to redefine success for ourselves away from the notion that Arsenal are perennial title/FA cup challengers and toward the notion that Arsenal are a frugal team and title challenges are icing on the cake.

Success could also be seen as being a member of a club that bucks the current system.  Arsenal don’t need to pay £80m every year to bring in big names like Kaka and Schevchenko and then slip up at the last minute of the final; we can do that on the cheap!

And further, why does everyone think Arsenal need experienced players?  Who’s more experienced than Fabregas, Toure, Clichy, Eboue, Almunia, Senderos, and van Persie?  They’ve all been to the Champions League final and have had years of experience in the EPL.  Throw in old man Gallas for some salt and a poor haircut and I honestly struggle to see what more experience the team needs.

So a shift in definitions, really a shift in perspective is needed. This team has the necessary components to win a title.  Unless… unless Cesc Fabregas gets injured.  But it looks like it would cost £80m to get a replacement for him anyway and I don’t see that happening.

Speaking of which, the Kaka to Chelsea for £80m story does add a bit of a wrinkle to the Adebayor to AC Milan story.  If Milan were to suddenly find themselves flush with £80m would they reconsider a bid for Adebayor at £25m+?  Maybe, but all signs right now are pointing toward Adebayor being in an Arsenal strip next season.

Which is another thing you should probably shift your perspective on.

Anyway, that’s it for today.  8 hours of driving HERE I COME.

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July 2008