Impressive Remy Cabella a good replacement for Walcott?




What is going on with Walcott at the moment?

Let me first of all say, I am a big fan of Theo. I don’t think he is the best winger we have ever had, but he certainly is a great player to have in our team. His stats over the last two seasons are impressive, both in terms of goals scored (24 in 84 games) and assists (22 in 84 games). Just have a look around and you will not find many wingers who do significantly better than him – especially if you compare him with other 23 year old wingers. Compare his stats with the former legends of Pires and Ljungberg and you will see he really has not been doing badly over the last two seasons.

Sometimes Theo is great and sometimes he is disappointing. Even top-top classic wingers like Robben and Ribery have off-games now and again, as the wings are difficult areas to constantly make a difference, and the opposition often chooses to eliminate the danger by doubling up. Every player needs confidence and full fitness to perform well, but if a winger is lacking in these areas it will show more than in any other on-field position.

Taking all the above into account, I would be really happy if Theo would sign a new contract and spend his best football years at our beloved Arsenal. His game will definitely develop further and he could easily become a core player in our team again. But, it does not look like Theo will be signing a new contract for us.

When it was not done before the closure of the transfer window, I was not worried about it at all. Both parties seemed to be saying they wanted a new agreement and it would all be sorted out soon. Three weeks later and Theo has hardly featured for Arsenal and it looks like Arsene has just about lost his patience with him. The signs are, unfortunately, strongly pointing towards an exit in January.

I reckon part of the problem is that Walcott compares his salary with those of similar players at Chelsea and the Manchester Clubs, and thinks he should be offered a better package. I cannot blame him for that, but neither can I blame Arsenal for drawing a line in the sand at the rumoured £75k per week, and for sticking to their pay-structure. I also don’t think he is worth more than that.

I have been thinking for a while who could be a good replacement for Theo and although I was able to muster a few names – Victor Moses, Adam Johnson, Afellay came to mind – none of them made me feel excited. But then, unexpectedly, whilst watching our CL game this week, I really became interested in Montpellier’s nr20: the 22 year old Remy Cabella. I have watched the second half against Montpellier again this week – just concentrating on him, and what an all round impressive performance he had on Tuesday.


Cabella was a thorn in our side throughout the game. He was simply everywhere as he was not man-marked and clearly given a free role to wreak havoc. He has got a good first touch, great vision, excellent movement, technically very strong, and a fine passer of the ball. His audacious, bergkampesque chip over Mannone in the second half was a joy to watch; not just in terms of execution, but also for both seeing it and daring it. He also made a good run across our box, followed by a clean, low strike that just went wide in the first half.

Cabella has the potential to become the sort of footballer for whom people come to watch a game.

Cabella is 171 cm long, so quite small. You could say that he has a good height to become an Arsenal midfielder these days! He holds on to the ball really well, likes to track back and is not afraid to make a tackle. He has also got a great engine and is quite fast. His finishing still needs to improve a bit, as he lacked composure against us once or twice in front of goal, on Tuesday. Although, with three goals in five games this season, he might be starting to get this right as well.

He is not a typical, classical winger, but just like Gervinho and the Ox, he looks comfortable on the wings. He can take on a player and get past them by using his skills and tricks rather than relying on pure speed.

Anyway, it is a bit early still to say Cabella would make a good replacement for Theo, if he is indeed to leave. But let’s keep an eye on him and hopefully he will play again when Montpellier visits us at the Home of Football. Definitely a player worth watching over the next few months, and I would not be surprised at all if Wenger has already got plans in place to buy him.

Total Arsenal.

35 thoughts on “Impressive Remy Cabella a good replacement for Walcott?

  • Hi Total, If you would have seen me in 5 -a-side tonight, you`ld be saying the same about me, a 56 year old Walcott replacerment ! hahaha. I shall bookmark you as a favourites page.
    I haven`t been around for a while on AA as my Daughter gave birth to my first Grandson last Wednesday. He was born 10 weeks too early, so Ive had a lot on my mind. Good luck with the new site, Your a smashing lad , I`m sure it will be a success.

  • Wow GLiC, hope your daughter and grandson are doing well. You must be so proud of them! Make sure you follow GiE’s lead in singing ‘Ooh to be Gooner’ to him whenever you can. Nothing wrong with a bit of positive manipulation, is there?! 😆

    Thanks for wishing me well, very much appreciated! 🙂

  • Just so we’re clear Total, I’m only visiting this website on the basis that you don’t let your AA commitments slip!

    I agree that Cabella looked interesting on Tuesday. It’s difficult to say whether he’s the real deal based on the little we’ve seen (I watch a bit of Ligue 1, and he wasn’t the stand-out creative player at Montpellier last year, that was Belhanda). It’s also worth bearing in mind that he only started 16 games for Montpellier last season (with 13 appearances from the bench), in which he scored three goals from 52 efforts and provided two assists.

    Like you, I hope the issue doesn’t even come up, that Theo signs a new deal and stays. And I still feel optimistic that he will do that, despite everything. But in case that doesn’t happen, Wenger needs to have a few back-up options ready, even with the Ox, Poldi and Gervinho having started the season well, and despite the possibility of the likes of Miyaichi, Gnabry and Eisfeld becoming big players. And perhaps Cabella is worth looking at as one option.

  • We are clear 26! 🙂

    I thought Belhanda was a bit disappointing on the night. Maybe he suffered from high expectations, where Cabella was totally unburdened by them. I looked at those stats when I wrote the post, and 5 goals/assists in 16 games (13 as a sub) is not bad either for a 22 year old player. I just thought he was fearless, and so driven on the night. He was everywhere and a constant thorn in our side.

  • Who is this TA imposter? I prefer the one on AA but…you seem alright!

    I hope this has been a humbling experience for Walcott because I think his attitude needs to be taken down a notch or two. I like Walcott, I think he is constantly improving but it’s hard to cheer him on through all of this contract stuff. Arsene said we should stick by him, but the idea of him leaving for free after all that Arsene has don for him really irks me!

    As 26 said I’m looking forward to some of the youngsters coming through the ranks, and seeing what they are made of in the cup matches.

    Haven’t kept track on Ryo, but if he is coming along nicely I’d like to see he or Gnarby come up and we buy another striker.

    Great blog TA, definitely book marked

  • Well, that was very sneaky my fine feathered, friendly Nederlander!!

    I don’t know whether to be delighted for you with this new adventure, or cross that you are disappearing.from my main haunt!

    No. I am delighted for you!!!!!!! 🙂

    Speak again!! 🙂

  • Hi Oz, thanks for feedback. 🙂

    Re Walcott – agreed it is hard to cheer him on at the moment, but as others on AA have said, we should take into account that the club are mean negotiators so could be making it hard for him. Him leaving on a free would indeed be horrible.

    I guess your court case will be any time soon?

  • TA,

    When do you expect to get the Word press go ahead?

    I encouraged (i hope) WG when he was at this stage, pre-Word press. As you know, he writes some great stuff too but I suspect he finds it hard finding the time to run his site and also holding down his regular job.

    It’s very exciting!! 🙂

  • Hi RA,

    Very exciting indeed.

    WordPress is all sorted out; that was the starting point of the blog (you can also use I am waiting for the go-ahead to be included on NewsNow and a few other Arsenal News search engines.

    WG is indeed a fine blogger but does not seem to have the same time available as me (stay at home dad). I could never combine running a blog alongside a full-time proper job.

  • I meant NewsNow, TA – silly me. 🙂

    Forgot to say, I too was really impressed with Cabella, a very talented guy and looked like an Arsenal midfielder.

    The other guy I watched closely was Belhanda with whom we were heavily linked in the Summer. Again he is a terrific player skilful, fast and athletic.

    Would not say ‘no’ to either of them for Arsenal! 🙂

  • I liked him too RA, but, on the night, I thought Cabella stole the show and it came as a complete surprise to me. Seldom has an unknown player impressed me so much in a game against us as he did. It might just be a one-off, but it is worth keeping an eye on him, and like you say, he looks likes an Arsenal player. 🙂

  • Very soon TA, they are taking their sweet time about it though. My literature review is due in a couple of weeks and a day in court will make things pretty tight.

    My default ruling is: Arsenal/Arsene > Players. So therefore…how dare you walcott!

    @ RA

    I was also impressed at belhanda too, I’m very glad we chose Santi over him though.

  • TA,

    There are no date/time shown by the comments on my screen. Also the font size is very small.

    Is this peculiar to moi, or have you decided that is what you want? 🙂

  • That is true RA, I will look into that. I have no problems with the font size though, but will look into that as well. Thanks! (only just saw your comment)! 🙂

  • I am afraid so, it’s only me 🙂
    Congrats TA, the blog looks good!
    I was not going to look here, out of loyalty to the AA blog, but I’m simply too nosey
    Why there are no time and date displays after comments, is it deliberate?

  • Evonne, RA said the same earlier. I need to look into it tonight (busy cooking now). Thanks!

    Once again you can be reassured there is no competition thing going on, and I am as loyal to AA as you are. You are a good egg though! 🙂

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