Posts Tagged ‘Arsenal summer transfers

11
May
09

That’s no worm, that’s Silvestre

silvestre

I’m just kind of tired today and besides, there isn’t much to say. Chelsea supporters are gloating, as they should, Arsenal supporters are feeling down, as they should, and Man U supporters are looking forward to winning the league against what must be seen as an easy Arsenal target.

I guess it could be worse. We could be Spurs fans, hailing a 0-0 draw against a strikerless Everton as an achievement. We could be Chelsea fans, gloating over a third place finish.

Hell, we could be Mikael Silvestre. Now that would be a nightmare. I mean just look at the man, to paraphrase an apt description of former Seattle SuperSonics center Jerome James, Silvestre is a part-time “man in a gorilla suit” and a full-time stiff.

But I have an inkling that Wenger sees some problems. I watched his post match press conference, and though you’ll see news headlines that say “Wenger a true believer” or some such, my interpretation is that he saw the problems:

  1. He rightly blames Silvestre for not bothering to go for the header… “I believe we must live in our job where the referee makes some decisions for you and some against. But defending consequently you should clear the ball on the cross.”
  2. He blames the midfield for Anelka’s second goal… “If you look at the second goal we could have done much better in midfield than at the back.”
  3. He recognizes that Arsenal’s defending is not up to snuff… “We conceded four at Liverpool, three against Man United and four today. We have to improve the way we defend.”
  4. And he recognizes the need for leadership from this team, especially in big games…  “what is very disappointing for us is in the games that mattered in the last three or four weeks we couldn’t win. That’s where we have to analyse.”

And he’s already talking about bringing in reinforcements, though, that could turn into talk of people being “like a new signing” as the summer wears on.

I can’t wait… Senderos is like a new signing! Traore, like a new signing! Rosicky! Eduardo!

I love the summer.

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13
May
08

Spend it like Beckham

Goodness. The rumor mill is in full effect this morning. Arsenal are slated to sign so many players I can’t even keep track of them all. The one that I found most comical though is Mario Gomez. Yes, Arsenal are going to sign another forward, because as we all know, Arsene collects strikers. I could be wrong. Maybe Wenger will go back on his promise not to collect strikers. Maybe Wenger will see that Adebayor scored 30 goals on an extremely efficient 130 shots and say “not good enough.” Maybe Wenger will see van Persie’s chronic injury record and say “not good enough.” Maybe Wenger will fret over Eduardo’s ability to overcome the mental block that is sure to happen because Martin Taylor broke Eduardo’s leg with a professional foul. Maybe Wenger will see the influx of Randall, Vela, and Theo, and say “not mature enough.” And maybe the boss will get sick of the quiescent Nicholas Bendtner.

Maybe.

But somehow I think not. In those 4 strikers (Ade, RvP, Dudu, and Sleepy) Wenger has the perfect set of strikers for Arsenal. RvP is exactly the kind of sparkle player that Arsenal need and the boss is hopeful that his 16 month run of injuries was just bad luck. Ade terrifies defenses with his huge frame, strength, aerial ability, speed, and nose for goal. Dudu is exactly the kind of goal poacher that Arsenal needed last year and the boss thinks he’s mentally cut from the right kind of cloth to bounce back and take on the Taylor’s of the Premier League again next year. And Sleepy… Well, Sleepy… Ok, he could sell Bendtner and buy a fourth striker.

But that’s the only way Arsenal are buying a striker: these are tight times budget wise, folks. I know that I’ve been beating that drum and you’re probably tired of hearing it, but that there is the facts. Arsenal have somewhere in the realm of £20m pounds to spend thus summer. There will be more cash on hand when Arsenal sell Hleb (which is inevitable in my opinion) but that cash will have to be used to buy a replacement. In fact, the only position that will be strengthened is in defense. Any other purchases will be to fill vacancies.

I don’t expect Arsenal to “spend like the big four” this summer. In fact, I don’t even know what “spend like the big four” means. Does it mean to pile on more debt until you reach £1bn? Does it mean recklessly overpaying for players as some kind of Live Action Fantasy Football team for some dumb rich guy who will then pretend to “clear the books” but in actuality has leveraged debt obligations on the backs of the fans? How about an ownership group that has huge public blowouts, debts that can’t be restructured, a free spending manager, and a rabid fanbase that’s willing to sell the future for a shot at a trophy now?

Or maybe they mean a team that plays the world’s most beautiful football, develops young talent, and actually made a profit off player sales this year?

Nah. The press are only interested in top four clubs like Tottenham; who spend through the nose for untalented hacks. After all, it’s a better story when that team falls flat, isn’t it?

Who will Wenger buy, how much will he spend, will it be a striker, a defender, an old player, a young player, a winger, a tisket, or a tasket? I don’t know, but the boss promises to let us all in on it very soon.

10
Apr
08

madness

I got something in my eye

Kicking off the post meltdown madness, our old friend Jens Lehmann has decided to let it be known loud and clear that he’s a bitter old man. I swear the press wait for any slight slip in Arsenal’s form to seek comment from Lehmann and so the prospect of getting juicy new quotes following the defeat at Anfield must have been dizzyingly exciting. And boy did he deliver!

On Almunia:

To be sitting on the bench behind somebody who only started to play when he was 30 is not funny. I am very angry.  FIRE BAD!!  JENS ANGRY!

On Wenger:

If the coach had spoken to me before the start of the season then I would have been able to decide if I wanted to sit on the bench. PLAY JENS EVERY GAME OR JENS SQUISH SKINNY COACH! He has a different opinion and I don’t really believe he can be happy with it.

On Arsenal getting kicked out of the Champions League:

For me personally, it is a tragedy, HURRRGARBBLE JENS ANGRY MUST KILL! particularly since I did not have a chance to prevent it.

Yes Jens, it is a personal tragedy for you that Arsenal lost at Anfield. And yes, Jens, Almunia is not as funny as you. And yes, Jens, Wenger plotted your demise, it wasn’t the lapse in concentration in your first two games and the complete disorganization of the defense when you were in the sticks, instead it was a conspiracy. A vicious plot to keep the greatest keeper of all time repressed. I’m sure it has something to do with the fact that Wenger is French, and you know, the whole World Wars I and II thing…

In true tragic fashion it’s never the others who cause the downfall, it’s always the hero, and Jens has done more than his fair share to cause his own downfall. From member of the invincibles, to Champions League goat, to mouthy, petulant, baby; you brought it all on yourself Jens and yet your hubris won’t let you admit it.

As Shakespeare once said to King Lear, please just shut up.

Speaking of petulant, mouthy, whining former Arsenal players… current media darling David Bentley has admitted that he had a gambling problem. Now, as soon as I read that I literally prayed that he’s the player involved in the match throwing scandal. No word yet, but if there’s a god…

Another tidbit that comes out of the article is that he was deep into his addiction while at Arsenal and that gambling and not football was his passion:

I would wake up in the morning and the first thing I would think about would be to have a bet rather than play football. All I wanted was to have a bet.

And just last week he was urging Theo to leave Arsenal because “Wenger never gives youngsters a chance and moving was what saved mycareer.” You’re a lying little sack of shit aren’t you David? You had the talent to play at Arsenal and you blew it on gambling. Well, here’s to a short and terrible career.

And finally, of course the press are all in a frenzy with the “I told you so’s” about how shitty Arsenal was going to be this year. Yes, their dire predictions of a 5th-8th place finish for Arsenal have finally come true and a half season of hand wringing as Arsenal took the top of the league can finally and gladly come to an end. My favorite part though is how some of the papers have decided to help Arsenal out with some friendly advice about who they should have bought this summer and in January. Here’s a smattering of their suggestions:

Johnathan Woodgate: yeah, after his “impressive” stint at Boro (following 9 appearances in three years for Real Madrid) he would have been the perfect signing. I see Woody’s “resurgence” as a sign of just how appalling Tottenham’s defense is rather than how impressive he has been. Woodgate, the stalwart defender who let in 4 goals against Chelsea. He’s the perfect replacement for Senderos!

Jermaine Defoe: surely this is a joke. First Woody and now Defoe? Why not just transplant the entire Tottenham squad? Then Arsenal would be assured a spot in the middle of the table.

Lassana Diarra: Diarra was only in the squad 6 months before he started having a go at the manager. Can the kid play? Sure, but do you want someone on the team who stirs up trouble (other than Jens, because he’s so funny!)? It would be nice to have some cover for Flamini, but remember that Diarra wanted to start ahead of Flamini.  He pretty much refused to play cover for Flamini and let the whole world know about his dissatisfaction with the situation. Letting Diarra go was the right decision.

Ribery: fair suggestion, he has been tearing up the Bundesliga and a scoring right winger is needed: English players need not apply.

Igor Akineev: who? Oh some keeper. Meh. Almunia has been fine. Almunia didn’t lose Hyypia on a corner kick. Almunia didn’t tug down Babel. I rather like Almunia, but then, I know fuck all about keepers. So maybe this is a good suggestion and maybe it’s just shit stirring and grasping at straws. When in doubt, it’s usually the latter with the British press.

I don’t know why we haven’t seen the “Why didn’t Arsenal buy Torres and Babel and Drogba and Essien?” story yet. I guess we’ll have to give them time, after all the feeding frenzy has just begun.

Until tomorrow!




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