Review of the season and why the Arsenal faithful can be hopeful

How many top quality signings do we need, Wojciech?

How many top quality signings do we need, Wojciech?

This will be a short post but I hope I can inject some adrenaline into all you gooners. The season’s end is here!!!! I’m still buzzed that we beat spuds to fourth. Actually it’s less ecstasy and more relief. But that’s not what this is about.

This has been a roller coaster ride of a season, losing RVP and Song, beginning fairly well before collapsing then slowly picking our ourselves up and now we are here.
 
Believe it or not, this season has had more positives than negatives.
 
Negatives have been the continuation of our trophy drought, very poor football on occasions, loss of form of Sagna and TV5, and being dominated by all of the big four.
 
However the positives were the return of Jack, tying our best players to long term contracts, the assembly of a very talented lot, our late season form has seen us produce some devastating breath taking displays (like at Wigan), sharing of the goal scoring burden, improved defending, return of form of Ramsey, Per and Jenko, and finally, our form of late has shown that we can be consistent.
 
The negatives can be chalked down to the fact we had practically a new team this season in Poldi, Santi, Giroud, Nacho, Jenko AND Jack, so team chemistry was still lacking. But we are beginning to see what this lot can do, and I have always said that once the team gelled fully (especially the midfield) we will see the real Arsenal.
 
Wenger has come out and said that we are going into a transfer window where all the players he wants to stay will stay. He also adds that he is determined to put us in good stead to challenge for honors by (and I quote him) ”doing well in the transfer window”. That’s exactly what he needs to do.
 
The rumor mill is going mad today suggesting that we are on the brink of signing both Jovetic and Higuain (I truly hope we do get both). However, I won’t go into details as I’m sure that all you BKers know exactly where I stand in terms of players in and players out. All I’ll say is that my fingers are crossed.
 
You cant help but feel that there is an air of optimism that we will finally be able to break the curse this and finally win something this coming season.
 
I know that this has been our war cry for the last few years but its different this time round. we really do have something to look forward to. The coach and management are making all the right noises and it seems that moves are being made as I write this post. The difference is that in this window, if we are to buy top players, we need to do it fast. In fact now.
 
A good example is the chase for top strikers. Real want two, Juventus want one, we want at least one, Man Utd want a replacement for Rooney, City and Chelsea want strikers, PSG are looking for a partner for Ibra; even clubs such as Napoli, Spurs, Athletico and Ac Milan are in the market for strikers. This shows you that Wenger can not afford to dilly dally (something that has seen him lose players like Mata) and rather should make sure that by the time the UCL is concluded, and teams are coming down from the euphoria of the closed season, he has secured his top targets.
 
All that said, I’m optimistic. And very much so. It is obvious that with the mentality floating around the Emirates, we are about to end the trophy drought.
 
I’m going to miss Arsenal seriously and I’m even glad we finished fourth and not third. That way I’ll get to watch our new signings play sooner than usual (in the qualifiers).
 
Keep it red, keep it white, keep it Arsenal.
 
Written by: Marcus.
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161 Responses to Review of the season and why the Arsenal faithful can be hopeful

  1. jgc says:

    Marcus

    Reading this it occurred to me that what would be interesting would be to list all the moving strikers, based on “solid (ahem) rumors” by price and match to those with money. Eg:

    Cavani, Falcao, Lewandoski, Bale? — all the top money guys going to your BM, Real, PSG, City, Chav types

    … I am not clear on all by any means

    Jovetic, Higuain et al to your mid-priced buyers (Arsenal, ManU)

    Rooney going to a higher priced buyer based on wages but not necessarily on the fee?

    I am not the informed person to make the list but it would be interesting to see, as the marble sorter works it out, who is left for whom, as it were.

    We all know who we would prefer, with ever so slightly differing opinions of course, but some will be way out of our price range nor should be bought for those prices..

    I suspect that despite all the people saying they are looking, not all will buy or buy all they want without freeing some talent.. Figure Dortmund for example will have to buy to replace the half of their team that appears to be leaving…

    In that last, I think you are 110% right, in that having the heart of our team staying for next year, and the year after realistically, is a huge advantage. Perhaps more so than some new buys!?

    cheers — jgc

  2. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Brilliant post Marcus, i totally share your optimism.

    I truly believe we have reached a turning point per our finances, and can now look forward to building a team and adding the missing pieces, without outside disruption and interference.

    I am also a big advocarte of Arsene Wenger and the culture of our club. With these factors in play, a financialy strong Arsenal will become a very dangerous animal indeed.

  3. TotalArsenal says:

    VCC wrote (previous post):

    Total, when you talk of being creative, Santi and Jack are both that type of player. I understand where you are coming from regards the Rooney angle, where he can play both striker and supplier. If Jovetic can do both I will willingly buy you a pint at the Tavern and say I was wrong. I just don’t see Jovetic on his own changing anything that we have already, but Higuin (BOING) will.

    Jovetic hasn’t electric pace, is not physically strong and is not a prolific goalscorer.

    My angle is spend the money on a genuine wide player Isco (BOING) to supply pace and precision and have Higuin (BOING) to finish

    VCC, I reckon he can do both, create and finish. He is definitetly strong physically and as far as I can judge fast enough as well. He links up very well and is very intelligent in his decision making, and he also is technically very good. And all that at 23! His goalscoring is also good taking into account his age and the defensive nature of the Italian league.

    But I respect your points of view and it is just a matter of preferences as in what this team really needs.

  4. jgc says:

    Hi

    Here’s a second question to make HH angry at me…

    Who are the “failed” strikers, at a big money team, who may go cheap, BUT, who could come right with us, or someone else for that matter. I.e. who will be the magic bargain this next year (if they are sold for a big loss)?

    I think Dzeko cannot be nearly as bad as he has turned out.

    I would also add Torres from Chelsea

    cheers — jgc

  5. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Exactly Proffesor, the main priority is keeping our players.

    Build a team, keep the culture and spirit strong, and then add the required pieces that will complete the jigsaw

  6. RockyLives says:

    Excellent read Marcus – I agree with every word 🙂

    Optimism is in the air 🙂

  7. Milo says:

    I don’t know about the last part, regarding liking that we have to play a Champions League qualifier, but I agree with the rest. I am very, very excited for next season. I expected us to finish second this past season, but after all the turmoil and upheaval I would be happy finishing second next season, and then winning the title outright in two years’ time. I don’t think we should expect to win next season, if only for the fact that it usually takes a positive progression prior to winning a league title. I would be even happier if we won it next season, and if we start well, we can do it! My head tells me that it will be a bit harder than that though, but a closing of the gap on the two Manchester clubs to within 3-5 points, would also signal that positive progression. If we can give them a true run, then I think we can do it the following season! Come on Arsenal! 😀

  8. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Rock, how you doing mate?. Loved your post in the other place.

    Arsenal is different class to the rest, and we will prove it

  9. RockyLives says:

    I’ve read quite a few comments from journalists about our “weak squad”. I think they’re off their rockers. If we can add a world class striker we’ll be in great shape.

  10. RockyLives says:

    I’m great Terry – especially since 6pm Sunday 😀

    How’s life with you?

  11. RockyLives says:

    By the way – in saying we need a world class striker, I don’t mean instead of Giroud and the Pod – I mean as well as.

    In the last couple of years with Thierry we all moaned about a lack of a Plan B if we couldn’t break down resilient opposition.

    If we can get a new TH14 (yeah, I know, i know), the Ollie IS the Plan B.

  12. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Cant complain Rock….no one listens. hahaha

    I always knew we would get top four and in the process hurt the miscreants down the road, priceless. hahaha

  13. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Spot on Rock. this is what City and Utd currently have over us, a variety of attacking talent.

    If we are to suceed we need options and everyone will play there part

  14. James Bond says:

    Thanks Marcus, that was a good read

    for me the biggest plus was Abou Diaby not spending the entire season on the stretcher (pardon the pun) 😀

    usually when we have a player linked to us this strongly, it often means that we’re not gonna be getting that player 😀 but the theme of your article is optimism so in Arsene we trust considering the last 4-5 signings he’s made are very very good signings, it’s just that RVP left which basically was a major set back….

    onwards and upwards we go next season, marching on, stronger and better than ever….but let’s hope we can get our signings nice and early so that they can gell sooner rather than later.

    PS: VCC you might like this one i left it on the previous article re- not being keen on jovetic…. http://www.football-italia.net/34459/viola-no-jovetic-arsenal-talks?

  15. RockyLives says:

    Right – off now. Catch you later Terry.

  16. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi Marcus 🙂

    Thanks for an uplifting and well written post.

    A big positive for me was that, despite the lack of team gelling, the new additions all settled in quickly and added real value to the team. The fact that we have so many PL ‘double figures’ strikers is also a big plus. Furthermore, we now have a good, thoroughly tested Plan-B in the cupboard, if and when we need it. Finally, we had by far the best away defence this season and scored most goals at home of any PL side.

    Additional negatives are missing Wengerball footie and the poor home form: we conceded far too many goals at home and did not win anywhere near enough of our games.

  17. Highbury Harmony says:

    In response to TA on the last article.

    What do we need more a creator or a finisher? Imo, we need both, especially if Jack is not 100% and ready to go next year. Jovetic is versatile enough to play from a wide position as well, similar to that of Poldi though of course we would all prefer to see him as a SS, similar to that of Rooney and DB10. In Higuain, we have a game changer though, a man who can score with either boot and will in all likelihood guarantee us 20-25 goals a season if healthy.

    So, if you follow the adage that more goals = more wins, then yes I would say Higuain would be the better buy, without completely having the team handicapped by its dependence on one player (like we were with van Judas). In Jovetic, you have a more well-rounded player that can both score and create, albeit not score as much as Higuain right now. We must keep in mind that Higuain is only 2 years older than Jovetic and was more clinical at a younger age. Of course, Jovetic could just be a late developer, but can you imagine if AW got to work with both? The case could be made that Higuain would be capable of 25-30 goals in a season in the EPL with the increase in confidence that his spot is not a timeshare and with the right training/guidance under AW.

  18. James Bond says:

    Additional Negative : Wasting like a million corners and then scoring

    how hard is it to change it a little when it’s going to plan ? instead of taking direct corners, make them short and sweet, have a plan b instead of the direct approach

    we really have to make our corners count a tad more ….take out Koc and Mert, we’re left with a pretty mediocre lot minus Giroud in the box…..

    Positive : Ramsey, he turned it around for the majority and has shown that he may well have a future at the emirates and is a ready to take over from Arteta when he retires or is injured/left out.

  19. Highbury Harmony says:

    Before I get around to Marcus’ article, I just wanted to say that I’m extremely pleased with the early Sanogo signing, even if he is a player for the future. He’s very skilled and has a touch of class to his game, so it’s just a matter of staying fit and preventing injuries. Easier said than done at Arsenal…

  20. TotalArsenal says:

    jgc wrote:

    ‘In that last, I think you are 110% right, in that having the heart of our team staying for next year, and the year after realistically, is a huge advantage. Perhaps more so than some new buys!?’

    Fully agreed. There is a lot of incremental ( 😆 ) improvement potential within this team; even without additions we will be better next season.

  21. Highbury Harmony says:

  22. VCC says:

    James Bond 22:27, cheers for the link. It maybe a Wenger smoke screen regards Jovetic. I personally hope so, but if he signs and becomes a hit then I will be the first to hold my hands up and admit I’m wrong.

    Total, your insight and intuition may be right about Jovetic, but I still think the money can be spent on other areas as we have players of Jovetic mould already.

    Touching on Rocky’s post, he has a point as to Wenger’s plan “B”. Using Olly as that very thing and hopefully getting a prolific goalscorer. Easier said than done I know, but my feeling is Higuin would perform well for us.

    Obviously I would prefer Cavani/Falcao/Lewanowski but they will be too expensive, but none the less they would be the Wow factor I would go for.

  23. James Bond says:

    considering we’re gonna be paying him 25 k a week, he better live up to it 😀

  24. Rohan says:

    @jgc…. not 5 minutes before I read your comment, the idea of signing Torres, sprung to my mind – They say great minds think alike 😉 . An £8-10M fee may suffice, and at that price is definitely worth it for someone who has clear pedigree, I imagine the effect of Wenger on the player would be astounding.
    Aside from our own fans, problem that we may encounter is the fact that the new managers may be less willing to sell, as Mourinho may feel that he can fix him. The same applies for Man City who are supposedly getting Pellegrini.

  25. AFC says:

    Marcus, top post my friend. 🙂

    It is good to hear you talking sense about how our season has gone. Another positive is that Wenger was able to get us into the top four again. This shows Wenger is the right man to take us forward and in my opinion he has got stronger as a manager.

    In Piers Morgan’s latest interview he continued to chat his usual shit. Something about Wenger’s time being up, comparing him to SAF in terms of trophies over 8 years (which obviously cannot be done) and saying it is time for Wenger to leave. He then went on to say how we must get Bale for 50 million (which will never happen) and who he would sell to fund the move. We should sell Podolski, Giroud and Gervinho to get the necessary funds. Finally he said we would be losing three average strikers and gaining a world beater.

  26. TotalArsenal says:

    HH

    All good points, although I don’t fully agree. More goals would be good of course, but there is every reason to believe that Pod, Santi, Theo and Giroud will continue to grow and improve their scoring next season. Add to that an improvement defence and a more solid/secure midfield and bob is your uncle.

    I might be the only one on this, but I reckon Jovetic will have a significantly bigger impact than Higuain on our team next season.

  27. Highbury Harmony says:

    Marcus, great positive and forward thinking article mate! Your article highlights exactly how I feel; it’s easy to dwell on the negatives, but now that the season has concluded, I can seemingly only remember the positives and how they may have outweighed the aforementioned negatives! I’m only look ahead to finally having a foundation in place to build on and concluding our transfer business for top, top quality signings early in the window :).

    Also, I agree that I’m happy we’ll get to see Arsenal footy early due to the CL playoff. Fingers crossed the early football does not let us down and we make it through to the group stage though!

  28. James Bond says:

    VCC,

    i’m not sure if you have read my past encounters with the tag team duo of TA and HH re- Jovetic before but in short, we’re on the same boat.

    would you be happy if say one Torres / Lukaku / Benteke were to be signed instead ?

  29. VCC says:

    Shez

    Sagna…….Kos……Merts……Gibbs

    Ramsey

    Walcott……..Cazorla………Wilshere…….Isco

    Higuin

    2 signings

  30. Milo says:

    We don’t have players in the Jovetic mould already VCC, that’s the thing!!! 😀 Jovetic can score, create, HAS HEIGHT AND A PHYSICAL PRESENCE!!! 😀 That’s the clincher for me, really.

  31. AFC says:

    JB, NO TORRES!

  32. Highbury Harmony says:

    TA, regardless of whether their goal output increases, we need more if we’re truly competing at the top. Most of the players you mentioned disappeared against the top clubs and I do not expect much of a change next year, in seeing that they are just slightly below the level of quality required against the top clubs.

    Signing Higuain won’t come at the expense of finding a DM either. The majority of the targets AW is looking at are in the £8-15 million bracket, which will still be affordable. Jovetic is a good player, but in no way would I expect him to contribute more than his current output in Serie A in a new league next season. I don’t trust Poldi or Giroud leading our line as starters next year and should only be used as subs or the odd start up front.

    Also, Jovetic is no DB10, definitely a couple levels below, but there’s no reason to believe he can’t improve on his current level under the guidance of the brilliant AW.

  33. Highbury Harmony says:

    JB, I would rather have Higuain and Jovetic than any other combination of Torres, Jovetic, Higuain, Benteke or Lukaku. Just my opinion and 2 cents though :).

  34. James Bond says:

    AFC,

    thanks for sharing that one.

    Piers M, mostly speaks rubbish but at times does make sense, he’s not a Wenger fan which is acceptable as not all gooners i suspect.

    i didn’t expect him to come out with that one to be honest, Bale no doubt is a world beater but i wouldn’t be selling podolski and Giroud (regardless of how average some people may see him to be) …

    one thing is for sure though, where as you can’t question his passion for Arsenal his stupidity has no limits when it comes to matters connected to the core matters of the club, transfers and so on.

    if we were gonna be spending big and wanted someone from the EPL then Suarez was the way to go if he promised to clean up his act.

  35. AFC says:

    HH, I would take Lukaku if we already had another proven striker.

  36. VCC says:

    James Bond………….yes, I like Benteke and Lukaku but have reservations on Torres, I feel he is a spent force. His enthusiasm seems to have taken a dip.

    I just have a hunch about Higuin. (BOING) I feel he is in the Suarez mould, has an eye for goal, has attitude and oozes confidence. You need those attributes to become a top striker.

    You have to try things.

    Its before your time but I can remember we once had a striker called Malcolm McDonald, he wasn’t the most elegant of strikers and often had the piss taken out of him, but he once said I will shoot at goal twenty times and don’t care if nineteen hit the corner flag if the twentieth one goes in. That was his attitude, don’t give a F—. confidence personified.

    We need a strong minded Centre forward. If there is a striker out there at the price we could get Higuin that can do the job the I say get him.

  37. VCC says:

    Milo, I don’t get the physical presence at all. I know I am getting old but he doesn’t look a hand full to me?

  38. TotalArsenal says:

    HH,

    Walcott, Pod and Cazorla have all scored in games against the top teams. We have the third (almost joined second) best goal difference in the league. I am totally confident that these three will grow and score more goals in the top games.

    Of course, Jovetic is no DB10: why even make that statement?! 😕

    He is that sort of type of player though, and that is what matters most right now, and like you say, he is young and will improve further.

    Higuain could also easily be the next Torres, Dzeko, Chevshenko etc etc

  39. Highbury Harmony says:

    VCC, Jovetic is not a physical presence, but he does have good control when he has the ball and is not afraid to get into the thick of things. His finishing is good, but at the same level of that of our current strikers, which is somewhat concerning. However, at his age, there’s no reason to believe that he can’t improve and become a good 15-20 goal scorer.

    Whether he can become an exceptional finisher/striker remains to be seen though (no one can predict that)…

  40. VCC says:

    Total 23:27, he could also quiet easily be the next Suarez too. 🙂

  41. AFC says:

    HH, Piers Morgan has some good points but his view on Wenger, trophies, finances and players are very simplistic. He seems very passionate but naive and does not understand that everything is not black and white.

    I would not get rid of Giroud, Gervinho and Podolski for Bale.

    Maybe we should personally invite him onto Bergkampesque. 😀

  42. TotalArsenal says:

    I say it again, Jovetic is not an out and out striker – he is the ideal nr10. And Milo is right, he has great physical strength already – in that he reminds me most of the granny shagger.

  43. Highbury Harmony says:

    Really, Podolski’s scored against the top clubs in the EPL? Perhaps I missed a game? Santi scored 1 against Manure in the first leg that was meaningless in the dying seconds of a game we were already losing 2-0. Theo’s scored 2 so he’s the only player in your argument that holds weight.

    It’s fool’s gold to bank on our strikers to suddenly improve their outputs against the top clubs next season, considering their age and respective potentials. With the exception of Theo, they’ve all about hit their peaks and one can only safely assume incremental/minimum improvements in their stats from here on out. Having a player like Jovetic will help increase our overall goal totals, but one must remember that when you generally add a scorer, it in all likelihood means a decrease in goals elsewhere too. He’s not a natural creator like Santi either, but he can be good in his play in and around the box.

  44. TotalArsenal says:

    Hahaha VCC, those South-Americans like a bit of shoulder meat! 🙂

  45. TotalArsenal says:

    HH, we have to agree to disagree. Oh and Pod scored against Bayern at home (or am I not allowed to use other big games?). And as far as I know, Theo scored twice against Chelsea and once against MU (but would have to check that).

  46. Highbury Harmony says:

    Yeah VCC, don’t put much stock in TA’s argument @ 23:27. Jovetic could just as easily be the next Bendtner, Vela, Borini etc. It’s impossible to predict future player performance/output, so the concern must go both ways.

    Shevchenko was 30 when he joined Chelsea from AC Milan, while Torres’ output is just unsatisfactory in relation to his transfer fee and wages. If Higuain can be bought at £18-20 million, they a goal tally of 15-20 goals would even offset the cost of buying him.

    Further, Dzeko is a somewhat misleading measuring stick since he’s been largely stuck behind two other top quality strikers in Aguero in Tevez. 14 goals in 16 starts and 16 sub appearances (many of those late in games) this season and 14 goals in 16 starts and 14 sub appearances last season is not a shabby return in any way either.

  47. AFC says:

    TA, I think Van Der Vaart is a perfect example of a player who could play as an AM or as a CF and score plenty of goals.

  48. Highbury Harmony says:

    TA, Theo scored once again Chelsea and once against Manure, Gervinho scored once against Chelsea, Santi scored once against Manure and Koscielny scored once again $hitty. We’re talking about domestic clubs, but you always seem to love to bring in games from other competitions into any argument about out goal scoring output/clean sheets.

  49. Dr Glic says:

    Fantastic post Marcus

    Yes, this is going to be a completely different TW from the past few, strong finances, core of young players tied up, no one we would be scared of losing about to go, FFP kicking in and Arsene at the last chance saloon ( imo ) to appease the fans, all making for those of us who love the TW, an exciting summer !.
    Now, if we were to get Isco, Higuain and Reus or a DM beast not only would my heart go….. boom boody boom, boody boom, boody boom, boody boom, boody boom, boody boom boom boom !.

    My knob would go…….BOING BOINGY BOING, BOINGY BOING, BOINGY BOING, BOINGY BOING, BOINGY BOING, BOINGY BOING BOING BOING ! HAHAHA

  50. Highbury Harmony says:

    our*

  51. Highbury Harmony says:

    If one takes away/reduces/ignores the transfer fee paid for Torres, his goal output is still acceptable.

  52. Highbury Harmony says:

    I should stress somewhat acceptable. I would not want Torres anywhere near this club haha.

  53. AFC says:

    HH, Torres’ league form is pretty poor. Quite of a few of his goals have come in the Europa league where most of the competition is inferior to the PL, which is why Ba (who is a pretty average striker) had to be brought in January.

  54. AFC says:

    HH, I would rather have Giroud instead of Torres.

  55. VCC says:

    Total 23:31. I must apologise, because we cannot possibly be talking about the same Jovetic. The one I’m talking about has definately not got great physical strength.

    The one I see is very slight.

  56. VCC says:

    AFC 23:48, I wouldn’t go that far. 🙂

  57. TotalArsenal says:

    Yes of course, HH, cause it is proving a point. 🙂

    We can score against the top teams, and putting three past Bayern in two games is not something I am going to pooh pooh like you do. Why would we just look at the PL??

    Do we need to score more in the top encounters, yes. Did our defence let us down in most of the top games: yes as well. I figure we will improve in both areas with what we have and Jovetic OR Higuain will help further, albeit with a different skills-set. I cannot see them come both but I would love to eat humble pie if Wenger surprises me beyond everything and would put them both in our beloved shirt this summer. Pigs might fly though.

  58. AFC says:

    VCC, I would. At Giroud has some confidence and I would say Giroud has played better than Torres in his first season in the EPL.

  59. TotalArsenal says:

    That is ok, VCC. We just have to agree to disagree. 🙂

  60. AFC says:

    * At least Giroud

    VCC, Torres is joke.

  61. VCC says:

    If he comes to Arsenal I hope I have to eat my hat. I really mean that.

    Night all, have to run Daughter to airport tomorrow morning early, she’s off to LA, lucky her.

  62. TotalArsenal says:

    AFC 🙂

    vdFahrt has all the technical abilities to play in the hole, but lacks stamina and physical strength to add real value to a team like Arsenal (similar to Arshavin).

  63. Highbury Harmony says:

    TA :), I must apologize if I have been rather bullish and aggressive over the last couple of comments! I get too excitable and passionate when discussing transfers, especially players I have closely followed for more than 5 years (since ’07 when AW heavily scouted Higuain at River Plate).

    To put my argument in a kinder way and for you to understand my perspective, I’ll say it like this. Higuain is an exceptional finisher. He is 25 years of age, which is almost, but not quite the peak of a footballer. Consider the fact that he has already thrived at one of the top clubs in the world at the tender age of 21 as well! It is rare for a player of his ability to ever become available, just before the prime of his career, especially at his rumoured price of £18-22 million.

    His La Liga goal output over the years:

    12/13 – 14 goals in 17 starts and 9 subs
    11/12 – 22 goals in 18 starts and 17 subs
    10/11 – 10 goals in 16 starts and 1 sub
    09/10 – 27 goals in 28 starts and 1 sub
    08/09 – 22 goals in 31 starts and 3 subs
    07/08 – 8 goals in 7 starts and 18 subs

    He is the striker we need, trust me. That goal output is out of this world relative to starts/appearances, especially at his age. It decreased ever since he had to share minutes with Benzema’s arrival.

  64. TotalArsenal says:

    Night VCC 🙂

  65. AFC says:

    TA, the thing about Van Der Vaart was he was an extremely good finisher and could score goals from distance, not to he also was quite good at taking free kicks if I am not mistaken which is why he also performed so well when Spurs used to play 4-4-1-1.

  66. AFC says:

    * not to forget

  67. TotalArsenal says:

    HH,

    Please don’t worry – I am just the same hahaha 😛

    Higuain is a good striker, no doubt about that. The stats have to be taken in perspective though, as he played with players of top quality and in a team like Real you will most likely score regularly.

    My view is we do not score enough from midfield, if you discount Arteta’s penalties. If Cazorla gets injured next season we are fucked. So my main priority is to get another creating AND scoring midfielder who can also be an attacker (wings or central). Jovetic is that man, and I feel strongly he is the one Wenger really wants.

    I can see him buying an experienced, top striker as well but more likely somebody like Vila and not Higuain: somebody who will be happy to sit on the bench regularly and share first team time with Giroud (and Pod).

  68. TotalArsenal says:

    Agreed AFC. Why did they let him go…

  69. bergkampismyhero says:

    Arsenal since 2005 have bought enough players to field 5 teams, or more in the premier league and have still not one a thing.
    So, buying players is not a guarantee of success is it.
    The answer lies in the management of the team and getting the best from the players available i.e. playing them in their best positions.
    The manager has not been successful in this and should go.
    And, perhaps a change in the style of play would be more beneficial. Today’s team is slow and is easily stopped from playing when pressed.

  70. TotalArsenal says:

    bed’s calling – catch you tomorrow 🙂

  71. AFC says:

    I’m off as well.

  72. Rohan says:

    @bergkampismyhero – i don’t think it’s fair to say that arsenal have bought 5 teams and thus should be able to guarantee success – it’s not as if the other teams stay stationary. The fact of the matter remains, if your competition are spending more than you – in terms of player wages and fees, it is only natural to expect that they will outperform you. We spend the 4th highest wages. Forget about the top 4, we are one of the few clubs in the league to have a profit in terms of player sales. In terms of wages we should finish 4th, in terms of transfer fees we should finish much lower, so all in all Wenger has been fairly successful.
    I think any team can be stopped from playing when pressed well – look at barca against bayern.
    It is not unreasonable to expect overachievement out of a squad when a manager is so well-paid. Thus I think your argument of the fact that we could have had 5 squads since 2005 is really a counter-argument to any point that wenger is unsuccessful – had wenger had a consistent squad to develop, then challenging for titles would be expected, but he has had to deal with constant departures and lower-quality replacements. Departures on their own are difficult to patch, but doing it with a restricted budget makes the life of the manager even more difficult. We lost our star-striker and a key midfielder last year, but finished this one with more points.

    I think for the first time in a long while, we can look at the coming season as a year where our squad can only improve.

    Apologies to regular BK’ers for the long post and the age-old argument, but I do find it incredibly frustrating when people criticise our manager.

  73. Highbury Harmony says:

    TA, yes, Real Madrid has better players but then you also have to take into consideration that Higuain has never been the focal point of their attack either :). All the play eventually ends up on the boot or head of Ronaldo and he gets the majority of the scoring chances!

    What I’m trying to say is that goal scoring output truly is a testament to Higuain’s abilities as a clinical finisher. If you put him into an environment where he knows he’s the leading man with players like Santi, Theo, Jack and Jovetic are distributing to him, there’s no reason to expect that his goal output will suddenly decrease. In fact, it’s well within reason to assume his goal output will return to what it was in 08/09 before Ronaldo joined the club (he did well with Ronaldo at the club in 09/10 too but Benzema also only played a bit part role in that season)!

    From my perspective, AW is a shrewd manager that knows when to take advantage of a bargain. If a player of Higuain’s ability is available at £18-22 million, then that’s an outstanding bit of business for him. With his talent and goal scoring track and the fact that he produced at a top club, normally his price would be in the region on that of Lewandowski at £25-30 million. Also, Higuain’s rotation with Benzema lowers his perceived market value too.

    Higuain is twice the player that Giroud is and ever will be and at only 1.5x the price, it is a deal we simply cannot afford to overlook. Michu scored 15 in La Liga before coming over and scoring 18 for Swansea in the EPL this season; Higuain is far more talented and clinical than him. One cannot even begin to fathom just how good he can be as the focal point of an attack and the leading man.

    What leads you to sway away from him is a stubbornness and long-standing acceptance of rumours that have linked Jovetic to us. Your plan for our future is far too inflexible and you’ve worked next year’s starting line-up in your head without any further compromise. Signing Jovetic and a DM will not bring us to the top, but merely be more competitive and consistent for maybe 2nd and 3rd place.

    If you allow yourself to see Higuain’s statistics and his play for both Argentina and Real Madrid, you’ll come to realize that if we can add him to both Jovetic and a DM, we will have a fantastic squad capable of challenging ANY team in Europe. We may not be able to better individual talent than that of Bayern, Real or Barca, but our understanding of collective team play, be versatile and adapt to different strategies, stability in management and playing style, in addition to having a plethora of finishers and creators at our disposal, will put us in a good position.

  74. Highbury Harmony says:

    Rohan :), not offended at all. I love it when bloggers defend our manager to the doubters. Well done mate!

    What is your personal opinion if we were able to acquire all of Higuain, Jovetic, a DM and an experienced back-up GK?

  75. jgc says:

    HH, Rohan, TA et al

    Rohan and HH, I disagree a little, for lower wages and a low (8-10m) transfer fee I would take a punt on a “failure” Torres, where coaches (now gone) and fans seem to want him out. He could well revive the numbers and style that got him that oversized deal in the first place. Was the main piont my original question anyway. FWIW

    Equally FWIW, I would prefer Higuain, I just have the sense of him being something more proven.

    I raised the “failures” point, and forgot Modric! for a single reason. I figure we wont get both Jovetic and Higuain, even if both are avialable to us at prices we would pay because we need other things, like TAs beasty DM… 🙂

    BUT, I also feel we need yet another striker option – we were in some ways luck with injuries this year – and perhaps that second option would be a top player who has “failed” somewhere.

    My best going example, not that we want him, is Carroll. Sold for 8 trillion to Liverpool, got nothing done, off to West Ham where he’s a star again (to an extent).

    So, for me, I guess I am asking are there bargains out there that dont eat shoulder meat and upset HH so much that would give us competition for places and great injury protection.. and maybe a wholelot more!?

    Same question would apply to many positions. One way to beat the sheiks and russians is to buy back and resuscitate their “failures”. I figure there is possibly equal or slightly less risk than we take whenever we bring someone “upwards” to a top club for a big fee (like some have said about Jovetic). Impossible to know as HH noted, but perhaps cheaper with at least some prior proof?

    cheers — jgc

  76. James Bond says:

    bergkampismyhero,

    disagreed .

    the boat has long sailed on us changing formation now from the start as this team is capable of adapting according to the situation as opposed to reverting back to the standard 4-4-2 you might be hinting at,

    we’re missing is a decent DM and voila you will see this team turn a corner and show everyone how good they are , it only appears to be slow because of our make shift midfielders having to play out of position (largely down to Arteta and Ramsey but they have done well considering the lack of options we had in that position).

    Walcott, Ox, Podolski, Rosicky are anything but slow….you can chuck Wilshere into the fold as well, his burst of runs driving the midfield forward opens up the play when he is fully footy fit and physically fit…..

    that’s plenty of quality and pace in the team, i would urge you to find me a team that has more pace than us up front or on the bench or even more ? you would struggle.

    however, we have been playing with a handbrake on maybe due to the pressure and some other factors but i fully expect us to be at our fluid best very very soon.

    one thing i do slightly agree with you is the pressing bit, the teams who have pressed and closed Arteta (mainly) down then they have had favourable results against us…i.e. MU….hence the missing link is a decent DM who would not only protect the back 5 but also give confidence to the rest of the forward line up as well.

    Wenger may not have been as successful but what he’s done is nothing short of a miracle either , sometimes we forget to look around at other teams below us, let’s take liverpool as an example, they have spent more money than us , changed more managers than most top clubs would bar chelsea and they still haven’t reached CL let alone quality for the europa league.

  77. Highbury Harmony says:

    Also TA, why does the purchase have to come at the expense of another upgrade? Why spend £12-15 million on Villa when we could get Higuain for £3-8 million more? Don’t let yourself be fooled into Villa would take a bit part role at our club. A world-class striker playing at a top club moving to ours will not take a bench role…

    I want BOTH Jovetic and Higuain :). I think you should take your argument for scoring in the midfield AND add it to the ST. Neither purchase will come at the expense of a DM, though you absolutely have a case in believing that AW’s history suggests he may not bring in two ST/offensive minded players. But, at the same time, I do not think we should narrow our perspective if we consider that a player like Gervinho could be sold and AW finally has the resources available to him to immediately replace players for ones he wants.

  78. Highbury Harmony says:

    Jgc, if Jovetic and Higuain are both bought, that would resemble roughly £38-47 million (depending if you want to look at the low or high end valuations). A DM will cost at max £15 million or less, provided we are after Gonalons (the next Busquets), Capoue, Benat or Rode. An experienced back-up should cost us no more than £5 million. Thus, even with contracts in consideration, financially, the deals could all be fit into our rumoured £70 million kitty, in addition to outgoing wages and fees in the form of Arshavin, Fabianski, Squillaci and maybe Gervinho and Mannone.

    However, the debate that comes is will 4 new transfers in disrupt the balance of our squad? Imo, it’s all relative to how you look at it. If we brought in Higuain, Jovetic, Gonalons and Cesar and only subtracted the 5 aforementioned players, then no it would not likely disrupt the balance.

    Why do I believe this though? Simple, with Arteta and Ramsey forming a nice partnership at the DM position, Gonalons (or another DM) could be slowly integrated into the starting line-up, eventually taking over for the aging Arteta (he would move to more of a bench role). As far as ST and CAM go, both Jack and Poldi are going under the knife this summer and there are always complications physically AND mentally after such procedures and we cannot be sure when they will be ready for the new season. So from that point of view, we need more depth since we were fortunate to have OG stay healthy this year. Finally, if we sell Gervinho (as we are heavily rumoured to), then we must replace him. Jovetic is capable of playing out wide if need be, but most likely it will mean that Pod, Santi, Theo and Ox will all rotate for time at the LW and RW positions.

    As far as Torres goes, I wouldn’t be massively disappointed if we took a gamble on him, but I prefer to get the younger, also established player in Higuain. Glad that we see eye to eye on Higuain over Jovetic though :).

  79. Highbury Harmony says:

    Think of it this way at the start of next season:

    Szczesny
    Sagna-Mertesacker-Koscielny-Gibbs
    Arteta-Ramsey
    Walcott-Jovetic-Santi
    Higuain

    Bench: Cesar (GK); Monreal (LB); Vermaelen (CB); Gonalons (DM); Rosicky (CM); Oxlade-Chamberlain (CM/W); Giroud (ST)

    Other: Miquel (CB); Jenkinson (RB); Coquelin or Yennaris (CM/RB); Diaby (CM…injured); Wilshere (CM…recovery); Podolski (LW/ST…recovery)

  80. James Bond says:

    jgc,

    i would personally prefer taking a calculated “gamble” on Torres as opposed to David Villa if both were to be in the same price range and wages.

    Torres would fit into our style of play and system rather nicely.

    where chelsea failed to get the best out of Torres was where AW got it spot on in regards to Giroud – giving him confidence and assurances that he will get the nod ahead no matter what…..for strikers i feel confidence is everything as VCC has hinted earlier with his M.Macdonald comment.

  81. Rohan says:

    Well I would definitely agree with you in the fact that we need Higuain over Jovetic. You mention his goalscoring record which is the decider in my eyes, as we generally haven’t struggled to create chances. It should also be remembered that he plays in the Spanish league which generally sees players enjoy a more seamless transition than the Italian or German Leagues.

    Jovetic would not be out of place at arsenal, but in my mind is undoubtedly more of a luxury than Higuain, who fits a similar mould to van persie, in terms of movement in the box and finishing ability.

    I can’t admit to watching much of Jovetic but many people tell me that his passing ability and link-up play is very good, but his ability to find the net is a little lacking. I suspect in his maiden EPL season he would struggle to even match the 12 he scored this season in the league.

    As for a DM, i don’t think anybody could deny that one is required. It has already been discussed at great length on BK, but either Wanyama or Gonalons would do. I prefer Gonalons due to his ability to pass, but i’m open to either. I don’t think we need a new GK – Fabianski conducted himself impressively in the last few weeks.

    If we are able to make these signings I would definitely say that we have a chance at serious silverware next season. I wouldn’t consider it a failure if we didn’t as I suspect the aim is to have players this season, and have them as a well-gelled world class team by the next. However, with the managerial changes at city, chelsea and man utd, there is no reason why we couldn’t.

  82. jgc says:

    Hi HH

    Ah time will tell. I would be surprised if we got both. Admittedly now, the rumors from agents especially have everyone interested in everyone and transfer fees rising faster than inflation in Zimbabwe (once clocked at over 1 million %)..

    I too would like both, but what if we got the DM, GK, Higuain (as we agree! 🙂 ), and then went for another CB or outside back? Imagining that perhaps Sagna or TV leaves … then that Torres deal might be good doings?

    With regard to Torres, I only tossed him out there to roll the ball. There are several other “failures” who might suit, though many here know them better than I…

    An interseting summer ahead. The only thing I demand really, is the hope that AW gets the business done toute de suite, so we can settle in for the year. No last day bits..

    cheers — jgc

  83. jgc says:

    HH,

    I also forgot Isco, what if Glic’s inside line to AW lands us Isco?? We would certainly have to forgo some other top purchase then? 🙂 🙂

    cheers — jgc

  84. Rohan says:

    HH, I would disagree with you in saying that acquiring both Jovetic AND Higuain would disrupt our squad. I think you would experience a significant change in the style of play of the attack, and as such we may struggle to score.

  85. James Bond says:

    and here comes another gem from the rumour mill, apparently Jose. M is a fan of Jovetic and wants to sign him for Chelsea

    ahahahahaahahhahaahhahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahah

    QPR will be linked next i reckon 😀

  86. Highbury Harmony says:

    Rohan :), glad we see eye to eye on Higuain being a great fit for our squad. I alluded to the fact that top La Liga players utterly dominate the EPL in previous articles. Cazorla, Silva, Mata, Michu etc. have all experienced incredible success in this league and were all top talents in La Liga before coming over. Higuain should be no different from my point of view.

    Jovetic is a good talent and would be a great signing without a doubt. He is a very well-rounded player capable of scoring and assisting goals, has a classy touch, great control of the ball, is very aggressive and his passing and link-up play is top notch. He is a great SS type player, adaptable enough to play wide and through the middle, but it remains to be seen if he can lead the line. Even if we brought him, I fear that our current ST are not good enough to bring us to the desired level. Thus, why I believe Higuain would be a great signing for us and Jovetic would be the luxury to put us over the top.

    Also, fantastic point in regards to silverware. Even if we signed Higuain, Jovetic, a DM and an experienced GK and did not win silverware, it would not be a disappointment for me so long as we stay more consistent and challenge for the EPL title in earnest (not a 15-21 point gap).

    I see your point in regards to potential transition if we bought and started both Jovetic and Higuain. With Jovetic, there is the potential to slowly integrate him into the side though. With Rosicky also capable of playing CAM, along with Jack if healthy, then perhaps Jovetic can bide his time in adjusting to the league (opposed to being thrust into a role like OG was this year). However, at the same time it’s impossible to predict how quickly or slowly they would gel into the team…for all we know they could form an unstoppable combination 😀

  87. Highbury Harmony says:

    All agreed Jgc. All rumours must be taken with a grain of salt as they are just that – rumours. Tabloids, fans and agents will push out any sort of information so as to raise value for their personal interests and nothing is a done deal until it is confirmed by a reputable source/site.

    My hope is that both Verm and Sagna will stay and if Sagna does not re-sign, losing him for nothing at the ripe age of 31 is not the worst thing in the world. At the very least it will prove to the naysayers that we don’t sell all our good players before the end of their contracts.

    We’ll just have to see how everything pans out, but I’m very happy that we see eye to eye on just how valuable the addition of a clinical finisher like Higuain would be!

  88. Highbury Harmony says:

    Fine JB, if that’s the way it is then Chavs can take Jovetic and we’ll take Higuain to meet TA’s demand of just one offensive minded player this TW 😀

  89. Highbury Harmony says:

    http://www.tribalfootball.com/articles/fiorentina-president-dalla-valle-jovetic-leave-3958976

    And so it begins. Get ‘er done, in AW we trust! Signing both Sanogo and Jovetic in a week would be a smashing success 😀

  90. Milo says:

    I disagree with whoever says that we DIDN’T struggle creating chances in front of goal this season. We had trouble creating anything in A LOT of matches this season. More than I am comfortable with. It was our defense that carried us through in the end. This is why I would be happy if we signed Jovetic, as it means we will most likely increase our chances to score. Then that means players like Olivier Giroud, Podolski, Walcott and even Cazorla will be able to finish them off.

    If we just bought Higuain, we still might struggle a bit to create enough chances to score. I think he is technically underrated though, and much more than just a scorer. That doesn’t mean he is as technically skilled at setting up and creating opportunities as Jovetic is.

    In conclusion, I’m not sure we can have one without the other. This means that we will probably have to buy another creator, whoever that may be, AND another striker who can finish. If Podolski were fit this season, I think we would have found that he could have been the solution to our finishing problems at times, but he wasn’t, and he won’t be for a while yet, so we must find someone who can take his place and excel at scoring goals. That being said, I think it is easier to score goals, IF the chances come and are easy enough to take, than to find players with the vision and ability to set up goals on a regular basis. It’s even rarer to find a player who can do both. I don’t know if there is one out there whom we can afford besides Jovetic or Reus though.

  91. Rohan says:

    Milo, I would say that we only struggled to create chances in the latter part of the season when we changed to a more defensively sound, but less offensively apt style. Prior to that our game was unfortunately riddled with near misses by Giroud (I like the guy but it was too damn much).

  92. Highbury Harmony says:

    Rohan, all agreed :). I too think it was the distribution of chances across all games that was lacking. Too many players were taking on the burden of trying to score goals, since we were desperate for results and wasted too many chances earlier in the season. If Santi goes back to what he does best, creating, I think it’ll really help to open up opposing defences and space for a clinical finisher like Higuain (hopefully).

    Also, we don’t know how long Jack was playing injured for, so there’s a real possibility that if he rests all summer and trains well that he could back as a force to be reckoned with. He’d be an additional source of creativity for our finishers.

  93. Highbury Harmony says:

    could come back*

  94. Highbury Harmony says:

    If we acquire a true DM like Gonalons, it would undoubtedly give Arteta and Ramsey the license to move forward and explore the creative/offensive sides of their games more often. No longer would we hopefully have to commit two midfielders at the DM pivot in order to compensate for neither being true DMs.

    Ox and Rosa are two other creators that can come off the bench/rotate into the line-up too.

  95. Rohan says:

    HH, precisely, it was the lack of a DM with enough physical prowess to cover while other players track back that left us too open defensively, people can forget how brilliant a playmaker Arteta was the season before this one – when he was allowed an advanced role.

  96. Highbury Harmony says:

    Rohan, to add to your point about Arteta being a wonderful playmaker, his age and likely further decline in pace lead me to believe that he should evolve and adapt to the deep-lying playmaker role, similar to that of Pirlo at Juve. Arteta is an intelligent, resourceful intelligent who can outsmart the opposition and his positioning is superb. Having a dedicated DM playing next to him should undoubtedly allow him to explore his creative side from both an attacking stand point and from deep (the latter which we often lack, which sort of negates the purpose of having the speed of a player like Theo/Gerv/Ox on the flank(s)).

  97. jgc says:

    Milo and HH

    I did some stats awhile back, and I too believed as you did Milo. But, at least from a Shots per game and Shots on Goal per game we were equivalent across our scorers to ManU and others … or roughly so…

    What was lacking was Shots on Goal turned into Goals.

    Now some of that is down to quality of the shots on goal, ie ‘real chances’ but some is our lack of clinicality (being clinical). Hence also my preference for the more proven/experience Higuain perhaps.

    I think also, we tended to get good chances in heaps, and not consistently, which may have more to do with personnel, or being too defensive in our personnel in latter parts of the season. Or something else.

    I myself think the DM is key being more consistent about chances, and freeing up our wide players etc a touch more in doing so. Equally, I think a clinical striker will convert more of those and we will suddenly, with just a few more goals, look a lot more dangerous on a consistent basis.

    cheers — jgc

  98. oz gunner says:

    Cheers for the good read Marcus. Love the optimism, it’s infectious.

    @ HH

    Alright. Ranking of players taking into account the different variables and how we setup as a team.

    1. Koz (defensively can be an absolute rock for us. A strong defence is important given the style of football we play).
    2. Jack (can play anywhere in the midfield. Once he gets his body right he’ll be a force)
    3. Santi (when he’s on we are hard to stop. Creates everything for us at the moment)
    4. Ramsey (our engine. Without him the divide between midfield and attack is too much)
    5. BFG (the organiser. Level head is needed to calm the back four)
    6. Arteta (another level head and protector of the back four that is often left exposed)
    7. Jenks/Gibbs (the same for me. England’s future fullbacks and are perfect for our style of football).
    8. Theo (when is on he can change a game. Unfortunately a team can nullify him too easy at times).
    9. Pod (clinical but we haven’t see what he’s fully capable of yet)
    10. Szcz (only last because the team in front of him can decide how much of an impact he can have on a game. Take Newcastle for example, he could have had a nap and we would have been fine. Against stronger teams he goes up. I think he can be the best in the world)

    ****Ox = number 1. If he continues to develop the world is his oyster. Really can play anywhere. Wherever he is positioned he WILL be world class, i have no doubt about that!!

    @ VCC

    A bloody Koala…you calling me fat?! 🙂

    Back to the comments

  99. oz gunner says:

    @ Milo 3.51

    Agree completely with that comment.
    I think we need both Jovetic and Higuain equally. We lacked finishing polish and creativity at times this season. Personally I think Higuain would have the bigger impact for us next season because he is the finished product. Jovetic has the potential to be a better player but is that a risk we are willing to take, because he may crumble in a harder league. Personally i love both and would score a ‘throbbing’ on the BOING scale if we acquired both of them.

    @ HH

    Selecting 2 out of the players you listed I’d choose Lukaku and Jovetic to be honest. Lukaku isn’t the finished product but jesus christ that boy can play. 3 goals against Man u (albeit a Manure who packed up after they won the league) is a very good effort. He was a handful against us when he came on and caused all sorts of problems for other teams. It makes me very angry knowing they we only just got rid of Drogba…now Chelsea have the exact same striker but a lot younger! He is going to be a monster in the EPL. I hope to Dennis he buggers off to another league so we don’t have to contend with Drogba mark II.

  100. marcus says:

    Thank you all for your kind comments.
    Regarding the CL qualifier, I took it as a positive considering how much I’ll miss watching the team play.
    And regarding transfers, I have a little advice. I’m sure everyone has a preference on whom they’d like to see us sign. But I think the best outlook to have is just hope that in our problem positions (Striker, DM, etc) we sign any top player who’s worthy. You might prefer Higuain but the boss goes for Benzema or Michu (this is purely an example and hypothetical). This way, you won’t be disappointed.

  101. jgc says:

    Marcus,

    I would note that qualifiers is only a negative because we have become nervous as Gooners and fans about the downside possibilities. They are always there in any qualifier of course, but you could imagine coming off a great season and not being to fluffed about it…

    I.e. I think it is a sign of the insecurity we are feeling. A good TW and returning team will hopefully nullify some of that, followed by our, infectious optimism here, destruction of any qualifier opponent..

    cheers — jgc

  102. oz gunner says:

    @ Marcus

    I don’t see a positive in the qualifiers at all. Just extra games we don’t need. clogs up our fixtures early on. Increases risk of injury, and not qualifying would absolutely demoralise the players and supporters.

  103. TotalArsenal says:

    HH

    I was ok with your comment at 00.55 until I read your arrogant penultimate paragraph. For me this particular discussion is finished now.

  104. TotalArsenal says:

    Morning all 🙂

  105. oz gunner says:

    Morning TA

    How’s the England morning looking?

  106. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi Oz

    It is horribly cold for the time of year, here and it isn’t changing much till at least the weekend.

    What about the Perth area?

  107. oz gunner says:

    Same here TA. Not as bad as what you have to deal with but low 20’s make it very miserable for me.

  108. Red Arse says:

    Always enjoy your Posts, marcus, and you promised uplifting optimism — and you produced it — thank you. 🙂

  109. Red Arse says:

    Hi Oz and TA, 😀

    Snow promised on the tops of the mountains in Scotland and even the Chilterns hills where I live. Brr! 🙂

  110. TotalArsenal says:

    That sounds cold for your part of the world, OZ :brrrr:

    As Redders – good morning 🙂 – just wrote, it is even colder and windier here. I am wearing a T-shirt, jumper and medium thick coat to stay warm outside: ridunculous!! 😛

  111. oz gunner says:

    @ RA

    Morning. Just google imaged where you live. landscape looks bloody magnificent.

  112. Red Arse says:

    Very rural here, Oz, yet not far to London or other towns. [England is tiny!!] 😀

    I have family in Kansas — now that is wide open territory — a bit like Queensland without the trees.

  113. henrychan says:

    Hi all.. Happy Morning..

    Which one is better :
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_NZl_JuW-TA (Jovetic)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3n74gg_WjJU (higuan)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fRXqwjEomaw (Giroud)
    I don’t think Higuan and Jovetic are better than Giroud..

    But look at this one..
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tG70GySV_Xc (Bony)
    Don’t you think Bony is very different style of Striker from both three of them..
    So why don’t we try this one..
    Last year Dutch football of the year Vertonghen went to Spurs..
    Before Suarez to Liverpool.. or Heitinga to Everton..
    Why don’t we got one.. Wilfres Bony.. hehehehe..

    And is Bony sound more alike to Boing.. hahahaha..

  114. JGC says:

    Oz

    Gee mate, low 20s in early to mid WINTER. Yeah, I’m feeling ALLL your pain!! 😀 😦

    -jgc

  115. Red Arse says:

    Well talk about conflicting stories — how about this?

    –“Fiorentina director Daniele Pradè insists there has been no contact from Arsenal over striker Stevan Jovetic.

    The Montenegro international seems set to leave Florence after the club’s President Andrea Della Valle admitted that it was “very unlikely” he would stay.

    Reports have suggested that Arsenal have made an offer in the region of €28m but this has been denied.

    “In my view, Arsene Wenger has no interest in Jovetic, as we haven’t had any contact with them,” director of sport Pradè told Rai Sport.

    “The Arsenal option does not exist. The situation will be resolved directly by the President and we are there to see what happens. Obviously, we’d be very happy if Jovetic decided to stay with us.”

  116. Red Arse says:

    Morning, Henry, 🙂

    Yes, Bony is certainly very powerful.

  117. JGC says:

    RA

    Setting up the fan base for the eventual finale to wherever, or true! 🙂

    Cheers — jgc

  118. Dr Glic Agony Aunt says:

    Hello Broke Back Bastardildos !.

    As usual under patient / doctor confidentiality , the bastard(s) in question will remain anonymous and fictitious names will be used.
    First let me get one thing out of the way . A bastard from Toronto asks….” Why are you an Agony Aunt and not an Agony Uncle ? “…..well bastard, let me think whilst I sit here in my peep hole bra, stockings and suspenders…..erm…..oh this is hard…..erm……it`s because I wear womens cloths you stupid c**t !.

    Also, before I get to todays subject, I would like to add that I have, by accident, come across an award winning cure for hair loss !. I was watching a video of Isco, when I started to dribble at the mouth, I salivated accidently on to my cock, which produced a growth BOING boner of epic proportions !. After extensive tests at Dr Stretches Laboratory of Bounds Green, it was found that the Lesbanians of my Principality contain a rare DNA in their “box” juices which produce a growth hormone !.
    I am now marketing the secret formula under the Dr Glic brand. A list of products is below >

    Dr Glics Spitz Roll-On
    Dr Glic Spitz in a Jar
    Dr Glics Spitz Spray
    Dr Glics Spitz in a Bag
    Dr Glics Frozen Spitz

    The following videos are also available :

    Dr Glic Spitz on your Titz and Dr Glic the Saliva Diver !.

    Today, I shall be performing the first ever live experiment on Bergkampesque !.
    We have bastard who is suffering from dementia. At a recent game Versus Reading, the Reading fans were singing ….” who are ya “, to which he replied…” I don’t know, I don’t know, I don’t know ? “. Also when we sung ” who are ya ” back to the Reading fans , he sung…” Who am I, who am I, who am I ? “. When we sung…” Whose that team they call the Arsenal ! “, the bastard sung the same words, but at the end asked…” No ,seriously , who are that team ? “.
    Since then the dementia has got worse. so today, I am going to perform a Lesbanian Mind Meld !.

    #Warning#, the following scenes contain acts of graphic sexual content, so please don’t try this at home, I am a fully trained expert ( I went on a five minute course at the Dr Stretch Telescopolist Clinic of Bounds Green and was given a certificate for a fiver, apparently he got them from his cousin Paddy the Greek for Wapping ! ) in this field of science.

    I have two of my fittest Lesbanians, Helga and Olga, they will wrap their thighs around our patient, the bastard, VCC`s head and perform the Lesbanian Mind Meld and try to cure the bastard !.

    Dr Glic: Hello Bastard ( VCC )

    VCC : 😯

    Dr Glic: How are you feeling today ?.

    VCC: 😯

    Dr Glic: Ok, we will start the experiment if that’s OK ?

    VCC: 😯

    Dr Glic: First , I need to look inside your head with a specialist stethoscope , please keep still !.

    VCC: 💡

    Dr Glic: ahh, as I thought, the lights are on, but no ones home !

    VCC: 😯

    DR Glic: OK, Olga and Helga, wrap thighs around the bastards head !…good !. Do you fell any difference bastard ?

    VCC: 🙄

    Dr Glic: OK Olga, hold the bastards testis whilst Helga tickles them with the feather !. Hows does that feel bastard ?

    VCC: 😆

    Dr Glic : Good, now put the bastards testis in a vice like grip with the nut-crackers. How does that fell then bastard ?.

    VCC: 😥

    Dr Glic: OK good, now release grip and massage gently. how does that feel bastard ?

    VCC: 😎

    Dr Glic: Oh no what`s happening ?

    VCC: 🙄 🙄 🙄

    Dr Glic: You have come in your pants !, haven`t you , you bastard !

    VCC: 😳

    Dr Glic: Now how do you feel ?

    VCC: 😯 😯 😯

    Dr Glic : Oh well, back to the drawing board !.

    Until next season.

    Dr Glic

  119. henrychan says:

    Yes RA..
    I don’t understand why people praised Jovetic so high.. He only scores 12 goals.. Not a very great thing to do.. Isn’t it..?? Even Cazorla can do better than him.. hahahha..

    Goal.com had released players raport of all league.. (although very debateable..)
    Guess what.. In Serie A Italy only Jovetic is at 75th..
    Compare to Vela is on 4th position.. (in La Liga) higher than Falcao.. after Mesi, Ronaldo and Inesta.. So better to welcoming Vela back to Emirates than fighting for Jovetic with Chelsea.. for 20 million euro or above..?? Crazy.. hahaha..
    Sadly no Dutch (Eredivisie) players rating.. Bony must be at the top of all.. hehehe..

  120. TotalArsenal says:

    hahahahahahahahahahaha 😛

    Dr Glic 🙄 😳 😀

  121. VCC says:

    Dr, Glic………how did I get home after the Reading game? Did you put me on a bus?

    Many thanks for the treatment this morning, it was very calming and therapeutical. I think your two assistants Olga and Helga are very beautiful and horny.

    I would like to ask one question, something that concerns me greatly, and has left me curious and concerned.

    When I arrived home I found I had sticky underpants and a rather damp patch around my groin area. Can you shed any light on this.

    Many thanks,

    Yours lovingly,

    Vicky ..XXX

  122. VCC says:

    Dr. Glic,

    One more thing………Did I enjoy myself this morning? 😉

  123. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    hahahaha,Dr Glic strikes again.

    Vics, sound you were medicaly abused, but in a good way.

    Ive never been abused by the medical proffesion but ive abused them. When i went for my eye tests, my good eye almost popped out of my face as i saw how lovely the Doctor was. She was about 25, blonde, with hugh tits exposed by a low cut top.

    She had to get real close to do these tests by flashing a light in my eye. I was asked to follow her finger with the eye and she hovered it around her tits. She was obviously asking for it.

    Anyway, because she was asking for it, i made a grasp for her ass and moved forward to take a bite out of her ear. Unfortuniately, my sudden move forward meant that i was poked in the eye by the flashing light. i was in bloddy agony.

    She said, “Are you alright Mr Mancini, ime so sorry, why did you jolt forward ?”. “Aghagh, you were asking for it” …”No Mr Mancini i didnt ask you to move forward”

    i was in to much pain to argue, even though i am convinced she wanted it. Going back in a couple of weeks and plan to make another move, will let you all know what happens. hahaha

  124. TotalArsenal says:

    Hahaha Terry, you are a genius. 🙂

  125. VCC says:

    Terry, seems I was abused, but I’m trying to find out weather I enjoyed it or not? haha

  126. 17highburyterrace says:

    I’m confused….

    I’ve just caught up with all the reading and I don’t know who’s agent belongs to whom and whether or not I should be optimistic or sad. I enjoyed the posts however (Thanks JM and Marcus!) and feel like I enjoy the different perspectives and ideas…. Getting through all the comments, however has been tougher work and now I feel very odd. I think, for sure, that I must get to the doctor, but, at the very least, I am planning on wearing my special protective eye-wear, if not my special absorbent undergarments…. Unfortunately, the only ones I have are most definitely made for ladies….

    OK, I wrote the above a few minutes ago….and it got me going….Soooooo….here I sit (the weather locally is very windy….) in my ladies gear, with my special protective eye-wear (it’s prescription and allows me to see the screen very clearly….) wishing I could get to the doctor. Alas, here we have no NHS so I either have to make an appointment months in advance or go to the emergency room!!! Luckily my hands are (finally) on the key-board so that I’m not playing with a Hig-U-Ain in my left while wrestling with my Shove-A-Tic in my right….

    All told, it’s like Old McBoingAlds farm around here: Here a boing, there a boing, everywhere a boing, boing….and me (still) in my ladies gear and my protective eye-wear….

    Uh, oh, here comes the missus….And she’ll be wanting me to make her a cappuccino. Gotta run….

  127. TotalArsenal says:

    hahaha, 17 – continue like that and you will soon be regarded as one of the funniest bloggers on BK 😛

  128. 17highburyterrace says:

    Total….

    It’s funny, but by the time I wake up around here it’s either time for a match (during the season) or the “news” day is over–all the papers have done their thing–run with their agent planted stories–which are then picked up and spun with new (and ever more dramatic) headlines. I go to my bookmarked pages (well, actually just the Guardian….) and Newsnow and get a flavor for it all. And then I come here and try to catch up….

    So I get a little flavor for who’s boinging where over whom…. My take is that there’s very little to be taken at face value, so I don’t…. My guess (despite all the negative headlines….) is that we’re in the end game with Jovetic and that Higuain is puro fumo (all smoke)…. Don’t Real Madrid need to figure out if they can get Ancellotti away from PSG, which means PSG need to get themselves a new manager and if they can’t get Arsene I cannot see them going for the “Interim One” (Benitez)…. What I’m suggesting is that the new RM manager might have a thing (or two) to say about where his players are going, or if they are at all….the great power of FloP (Florentino Perez) notwithstanding….

    We’ve got a serious Merry-Go-Round factor happening this TW and I think THAT is the big story. It will take most of the Summer (if not right to the deadline) to play out and we’ve got big games in August (!!) Arsenal, with “our money,” will always be getting swept up along the edges of the circus, but it seems pure foolishness to think most of these things (AW to PSG, any Real Madrid or PSG or City or Silly money/big salary player to Arsenal, etc., etc.,) are anything more than the wishfulest of wishful wishes….

    So, I will sit patiently in my various get-ups….(damn thong is riding up again….) and hope for some infotainment and a trip to the (good) doctor….

    😆

  129. AFC says:

    17ht, Marcus has told me that Higuain has personally asked to leave and Real want him to stay but will let him go. But why would Higuain want to come to Arsenal. To me you have a point. Higuain coming to Arsenal for around 20 million seems too good to be true although I would welcome him to Arsenal with open arms.

  130. TotalArsenal says:

    That is what I loathe so much once the footie is over, 17: the endless feeding frenzy on gossip. I got carried away with it myself, but from now on I am going to wait till a signing is properly announced, and stay away from ‘if and what scenarios’ re names that are thrown into cyberworld.

    Re Higuain, I am convinced he is this season’s Sahin, and is purely used to get Jovetic at the right price. But we might not get either of them, and who knows what will happen in the next few months.No footie, no sunshine and two months to go till the next friendly – yippee! 😦

  131. Glic says:

    No sunshine ?. I`ve just come back from a 3 mile walk with my Pooch and It`s been sweltering, Arsenal hoody tank top, shorts and shares !. I did get pulled up by the Old Bill for looking suspiciously too f**king gorgeous and loitering with intent to torment the local ladeez !. hahaha

    As he he henry probably doesn`t understand any of that, I`m sending him a dildo shaped whoopee cushion for his rectum !. As football is a universal language ,so are whoopee cushions !. hahaha

  132. Glic says:

    I know you broke backers will probably be concerned by the news I`m about to share with you, but calm down, be relieved, it wasn`t me !. I was luckily driving by and the said “member” happened to fly in through my window and land on my wife`s lap !. We both agreed it was a decent size and I left the scene of the incident and quickly got home and froze the item in some of Dr Glics Frozen Spitz, hopefully the technology is just around the corner for the transplant !.
    What the f**k am I on about ?. Read article !.

    http://www.falmouthpacket.co.uk/news/10434718._/

  133. Glic says:

    shares = shades !

  134. James Bond says:

    when looking at all the transfer speculations and rumours, i tend not to forget that next year is an extremely important year for any football wanting to represent their country (ok not if you’re rio ferd e.t.c) hence players like higuain/lukaku/Vila/Hernandez/Dzeko e.t.c wanting to leave in the hope of playing more first team football and staking a claim for the start 11 for next years world cup is very reasonable, for that reason alone, i expect a lot of quality players leaving their current clubs and show casing their talents at the biggest stage in world football ….(Tv wise, charisma wise and based on entertainment value, EPL isn’t bad, is it ? )

    we have been linked with Wayne Rooney but i wouldn’t mind us being linked with Hernandez , he is one very under rated striker and one we could do with.

    the whole jovetic debate is a healthy one but when you put it into perspective and consider his 30 million price tag, i can’t help but look at other players available in the 23-30 million bracket, lewandowski/hernandez/Benzema spring to mind and i would much prefer buying them as opposed to Jovetic for that price.

    as time goes by, it’s hard to tell with each day whether Jovetic is being used as smoke screen or Higuain, either way let’s expect the unexpected by Mr.Wenger once more.

  135. James Bond says:

    sorry, the first part of the above comment was for AFC, when he asked why Higuain would want to come to Arsenal.

  136. 17highburyterrace says:

    Yeah, in general the weather is pretty fine around here so it gets pretty crazy in town and around my (quiet) neighborhood as summer happens. Usually I do my gardening in a mankini that gets the mail-lady (she who brings the letters, not a she-male 😉 …) into a bit of froth….

    So, for me, it’s time to fire up the hot-tub, strip down to nothing but the “Jewel Cooler II” (to preserve what’s left of my head hair, the body hair being long gone–now that the footy is over, I’m Arse-shavin’ each and every day….No more three day stubble just so my bum no longer squeaks….) and take a soak with the Missus–she loves me for my coffee, but sometimes she wants nothing but the cream…. :eyebrows lifting, with a giant smile:

    And speaking of Arse-shaving…. It will be interesting what comes of Arsenal’s off-season activities. We finished the season well (results-wise, at least) but the rhetoric is still in play. “Money-to-spend,” “CL qualification not enough” are the official murmurs from the Club… “Arsenal are a joke” are the words down on the docks, er, coming from the Piers and those sorts….We don’t have the pressure on us to buy another Andrey, and some of us even believe that priority number 1 should be to keep our “teaminess” intact. As such, midfield seems the spot, whether it be with a guy “in the hole” (as it were….) or with somebody who can replace the twin pivots (Arteta and Ramsey) and allow us a little luxury to dream of Diaby or Wilshere or (even) Rosicky going B2B (which I think means the ability to turn offense into defense…) while Santi plays where he wants to…. Sometimes it seems like we need a full make-over, sometimes it seems like we’re kinda close to being OK….

    Finally, I want to say something about that last game that hasn’t been mentioned (much at least)…. WTF was that bit about Arteta starting (Willis Reed style…) and then getting replaced by the Ox? Are we that lame that starting the Ox would have signaled too much weakness and we would’ve folded like it was laundry day? I (too) was worried when the Ox came on, but as the match wore on it turned out just fine. He’s got enough quickness for a stab-tackle at the center circle and he can direct a one touch better than many (including the guy from Cardiff)… He does have a tendency to want to let the defenders get too close and then go around them, but so does little Santi… and they both looked a treat on the ball in our own half…. It was only “already on the beach” Newcastle, but for me it inspires just a little more (creeping) optimism as we wait (and wait and wait) for the DM beast who we will never sign. (Wasn’t Gonalons a “done-deal” just a couple of weeks back?….)

    OK, gotta slip off the heels, touch up a couple of scratchy areas–i.e. do a little manscaping…and pop on the Jewel Cooler….

  137. Glic says:

    My biggest piss-off of the (pre)TW so far has got to be, (bearing in mind that we were heavily rumoured to have made a bid a while back ) why didn`t we pay the release clause for Goetze of 37 Million Euros ?. Hasn`t Isco got a release clause price ?.

  138. 17highburyterrace says:

    007, United’s last buy from us was RvP….Ours from them was Sylvestre….

    It could be different now that Moyes is “in charge,” but I would be highly doubtful that anybody there considers Chicharito to be as useless as Sylvestre…. Additionally, just as 20 mins/game Kagawa is good for United in the Asian Market, you shouldn’t underestimate what Chicharito means to the Mexican (and Mexicans in the US) market. Tonight is my Spanish class (which is a cross-cultural conversational one, with English as a Second language people)… I guarantee that nobody will be wearing an Arsenal Kit with Vela 11 on the back….

    Where is Dos Santos (Giovanni, not Andre….) playing these days….

  139. James Bond says:

    i think Arteta starting was more to do with Arteta being keen and wanting to lead from the front being the skipper and all that, also he passed the fitness test but as the match went on, he must have felt a recurrence of his hamstring and hence went off, you can’t question or doubt the guys commitment or passion for Arsenal, the way he celebrated the goal and then at the end with AW was worth noting, a true professional.

    i do agree the OX looked right at home and very comfortable in that role, maybe that’s where he’s been whole season, training and working on his game through the middle 😉

    on a slightly different note, let’s hope we Don’t make Jack the captain anytime soon, yep, i wouldn’t want to sell our captain based on our past practices 😉 if TV is sold then it just continues the tradition at arsenal, isn’t it ? maybe we’ll make Gervinho the captain next, ha

  140. AFC says:

    JB, the Ox already played as a CM at Southampton if I am correct and Wenger played him out wide.

  141. James Bond says:

    Glic,

    your boy Isco has a release clause of near 40 mills if i am not mistaken, saying that even santi had a similar one yet we got him for 1/3 of that 😉

    17ht,

    agreed but as you can see from my point of view, Hernandez isn’t getting much playing time at utd and there comes a time when he would want to leave (i’m hoping that time is now because of the world cup next year and utd wanting to buy falcao/lewandowski e.t.c)….if we were to bring back any ex gunner then i would like us to bring back Vela, but again for the above reason , he wouldn’t want to be coming back to arsenal just to be on the bench either.

    have fun learning espanol, amigo 😀

  142. James Bond says:

    AFC,

    Wenger also played him through the middle vs Milan last year….but for his development and as wenger often does, he likes playing in all positions up front if not most …i,e, bendtener playing wide…..gervinho as a striker……..ramsey on the wings e.t.c it’s part of the learning curve, also Gareth bale was a lb at Southampton primarily.

  143. Glic says:

    007

    That’s roughly £34M !. No f**king about, in quickly before any one gets wind !. BOING !

  144. James Bond says:

    re-Gotze , meeting the release clause alone isn’t enough, the player should want to leave as well and unfortunately Mario G wanted to say in Germany hence BM was just right .

    by the way, what’s everyone’s most nonsensical Transfer of last season ?

    for me Chelsea take the biscuit with their selling of Daniel .Sturridge and buying Ba, had Sturridge got half the playing time BA got, he would have delivered the goods.

  145. AFC says:

    JB, I know. 🙂

    Which is why I was wondering why Jack has not been played out wide. He is faster and more attacking than Ramsey so I feel he should have played Jack out wide to furthe his development.

  146. AFC says:

    JB, only thing Wenger did not do was play Santos at LW. 😉

  147. 17highburyterrace says:

    Bond,

    I see your point about the WC, esp. in the case of the Argentines…. El Kun, Tevez, Di Maria, Messi and Higuain represent a lot of firepower….And that’s just off the top of my head….Who am I forgetting who needs first team play to get a shot at playing in Brazil (which means even more to those guys?….

    For other countries (Mexico, Japan) just wearing the shirt of a giant club means more than actual production. Vela actually got a pretty big run-out for Mexico in South Africa….I wonder what his production at Real Sociedad will mean for his future….Of course, he’s still recovering from bringing the tranny-prostitutes to the national team fiesta…. (and, of course, I’m wondering if I can get a rise out of Glic for reminding him….)

  148. James Bond says:

    AFC,

    Jack’s time will come when he finally puts his fitness issues to bed , bear in mind jack has given us about 1.5 seasons so far (and that’s me being generous)…and in those 1.5 seasons, he’s basically played in different midfield positions and has often slotted wide during games, only a matter of time before he is tried on the right or left wing i reckon, ha

    santo’s would have been perfect for us had we been playing a 4-4-2 by that he could have slotted in the LW position and taken it from there, but boy did he lack pace this season whilst playing, maybe he ate plenty of donor kebabs down north london 😀

    17ht,

    one things for sure, there will be plenty of players wanting as much exposure and playing time for their teams next season, if they see clubs bringing in more players at their positions i.e. from the top of my head Cavani at man city – (potential departures kun/tevez )…..Lewandowski man utd (Hernandez/Rooney/)…..Falcao/Ronaldo to Chelsea (Torres/Lukaku)……Neymar to Barca (Villa / Sanchez) e.t.c e.t.c

  149. AFC says:

    BJ, maybe he got caught out trying all of our healthy English cuisine just minutes away from the Emirates. 😀

    I am surprised Wenger did not put him on a diet.

  150. James Bond says:

    AFC,

    we have fitness coaches, a medical team and so on who’re paid a lot of money to monitor such things, i wouldn’t blame wenger but i am going to blame his back room staff for such fitness issues, even poldi seems to be putting on a few pounds 😀

    at the end of the day, if you’re a professional you need to be looking at your fitness levels yourself and make use of the facilities provided, one of the better players and professionals in that regard have been fat frank (lampard), his training drills and routines are exemplary for up coming and current players….(david beckham was also very good in this regard).

  151. 17highburyterrace says:

    Geez, this is making me hungry….I forgot Pastore and Levezzi at PSG amongst the big name Argentinian forwards….

    Overall, Bond, I think you’re right about players wanting (italics) to move to greener pastures. Unfortunately (for them, but not for us….) the teams that can match the “big” clubs wages are few and far between. This is maybe where JM and his sponsor connection stuff comes in…. Maybe Nike/Puma/Adidas can give a loan to a club if it keeps one of their marquee players in the limelight….

    And lets not forget that it’s all being driven by a media whose answer to making less and less money is to make up more and more bullsh*t. It seems to me that ALL elements in top level European football are out of control and that everything is getting so top-heavy and leveraged that it’s hard not to see it as a “bubble” economy. What about the other (giant) straw on the camel’s back: that the clubs have to “give up” their players to the national teams for minimal compensation?…. It’s “good” to have lots of high-profile internationals on your squad, but is it really, when they come back injured or otherwise failed (not played and mocked, like Theo in ’06, for example)…. And, if they’re “successful,” then what? More money or I’m outta here….

    Arsenal (and its supporters….) are trying to navigate these murky waters…. Keep calm and keep paddling, I say….(And beward the boing of your rudder, or something…)

  152. James Bond says:

    17ht,

    you see i don’t buy this whole us not affording players wages or big wages hoople that many people (or other supporters of clubs make us feel)…we have one of the highest wage bills in England, which shows that we can pay big wages but it also means we’re playing a lot of silly money for players we should have offloaded many a moon ago.

    looking at the current financial position of the club, we can easily afford to pay a 100 to 150 k to a deserving or top notch quality player (as stated by AW)…150 k a week basically means that the net (after taxes) take home for players is roughly around the 100 k mark or there abouts, which means that players who earn a reported 250 k a week end up between 135k to 150 k theoretically after tax, no doubt these folks will have clever accountants and agents helping them make the most of it but if we kept things simple, sometimes it’s better to have a wage structure in place and give the above sales speech to attract players, however, it doesn’t appear to be working for us if we have one of the highest wage bills and we’re unable to get the big fish so to speak and deliver success.

    if you compare that with the likes of spuds then the no doubt have done much better than us yet they are paying more money to their top earner (bale 120 k a week) as opposed to our highest earner poldi (100-107 k a week).

    but it’s an interesting subject, clubs, international teams and so on you have touched upon….what ever the case, the players seem to be in a win win….get injured on international duty come back to the club – they sort out your medicals…..do well for the country – find yourself admirers all around the world and be in a position to bully the club in their own little way , ha

  153. James Bond says:

    by the way , another interesting thing i would like to share with every one,

    the petroleum club recently got a deal done with NIKE (AFC, i hope you are reading this)….they got a 6 year deal done with Man city worth 71 million and now check this out, Arsenal are supposedly going to be signing a deal worth 150 Million for 5 years with Puma.

    for once, i will have to give credit where it’s due – well done Gazidis !

  154. James Bond says:

    to those of you who wanted Gareth bale at Arsenal , i say why not ? we have Ramsey at Arsenal, Theo at Arsenal..and also Ox, he will feel right at home…oh and one other , Bale is/was a gooner supporter not so long ago, he’s an Arsenal fan but then again so are a lot of players playing for other clubs 😀

    Bale would be a quality addition to this team capable of playing literally everywhere if given a free role…but sadly 50 million seems to be too much at present for us to be spending on one player, who knows next season if we manage to win the treble , we might be in a better position to buy a player over 35 mills.

  155. Milo says:

    I agree with JB about Jovetic being a smoke screen. I think he will end up at City or Chelsea, and we will end up with someone totally different! 😀 That’s not a bad thing in my eyes, as much as I like Jovetic as a player. His price tag of 30 million, plus the fact that we reportedly have not made any contact with Fiorentina regarding him, leads me to believe that we are after someone else!

  156. James Bond says:

    Milo,

    i have it on good source that we have made contact with Fiorentina, it’s only normal that they would deny it totally for 2 reasons …

    1: we don’t do our business this way as well in which we don’t want clubs coming out like that telling everyone we’ve been in touch

    2: Fiorentina are holding out for the entire release clause figure which means they are encouraging other suitors to come forward without being discouraged by arsenal’s interest.

    we want him for no more than 20-22 million, the initial offer was around 18 million and there abouts…

    Jovetic will be changing clubs, whether he ends up at Arsenal like you said remains to be seen 😉 but yeah 30 million is a large amount for a player coming from Serie A…i much rather have us buy someone from la liga or bundesliga for that price personally, but who would you prefer to see at Arsenal if you were given 30 million to go out and get us a player ?

  157. 17highburyterrace says:

    Bond, you should really consider writing a post for BK… 😉 as should I…. Why are we giving away all this content for free?….Also, did you say Jovetic was the smoke screen (as Milo suggests) or are you two having trouble again? (My take is the exact opposite–we’re in the end game with Blow-Jo, Higuain is puro fumo….)

    And, I actually have the opposite conclusion about player power (from the same set of information) but I think it’s due to where I live….

    Compared to the much more organized structures of the North American sports, the players (IMO) are pretty well exploited. It’s all changing (very rapidly) and the attention is going from seeking glory to seeking money all too quickly. If guys like Nasri and RvP, who have done almost nothing at the international level, can be at the very highest level of remuneration, why shouldn’t everybody? Well, because the clubs cannot or (in the case of Arsenal) will not pay players that much. Instead, we sell them, buy “replacements” and keep thinking about how we can get more game-day revenue….

    The problem is that there are only so many Man$ities or P$Gs and the “bigger clubs” actually have much bigger (top to bottom) wage scales, I would guess–These figures need to be made public…. So, if City and PSG and the team in Dagestan can pay 10 players 200-250k/week and United and Barca and RM and Milan and Munich can pay 5 players that much and a couple of clubs in the States can pay Beckham and Henry…. well that’s only 50 (or so) players IN THE WORLD who can make the big money, which isn’t even that big, given the dangers/short careers of the players. (OK, sure, Chelsea needs to get some guys to that level, but first they actually need to do more than get lucky in those Euro tourneys….) The rest of the clubs max out at the level you speak of….and, like Spurs with Bale, when wage demands + transfer fees get too high, they must sell….

    It’s getting better for the players but where is the collective bargaining (minimum salaries, etc.) and those guys actually have to run–even fat Sam (ir)–and for some of them it’s twice a week all year round…. rather than throwing 80 pitches once a week….6 months a year….(for twenty years and a lot more money….) and, in the American league, letting some other fat fella (who cannot play in the field) hit for you!!!….

    But that’s just my take….On the subject at hand–Transfers(!!!!)…. Again, I think there will be PLENTY of hype this summer and (relatively speaking) a lot of players moving around, and (finally) some good opportunities for Arsenal to sneak something (or someone) in… but still, I’d preach caution….and argue that it’s easier for teams to keep their own players (and make them happy by bumping up wages) than it is to create a winning squad around new acquisitions. Far less exciting, however…. Arsene has argued that everybody thinks they have the prettiest wife at home, but still, everybody likes to look around for a bit of the boing factor….OK, off for my Arse-Shavin….

  158. James Bond says:

    there’s another way to look at the above as well if my good source is to be believed…

    if we have upped it to 22 million and his release clause figure is 25.8 million, that that means we may lose out on him to another club for not being willing to fork out another 3.8 million ?

    if that is indeed the case, then it will no doubt make for another healthy discussion.

  159. TotalArsenal says:

    New Post – New Post 🙂

    I promise there is no puro fumo about this announcement! 😛

  160. James Bond says:

    ahahhahahahaha @ 17ht

    myself and Milo are just fine, we’re passionate gooners, it’s just that Milo is a tad more passionate and perhaps assumed i had read his comments from a previous article before making the comments that i did in that article where the gloves came off 😀 in the end we’re all decent and reasonable chaps, as you can clearly see from comments posted in this article that there is a bit of tension between HH & TA 😀

    yes, you should deffo write a post on BK, you seem well versed and equipped in a lot of areas concerning both football and tricks n trades in sports around north america.

    i do agree with you in regards to players/athletes preferring money over glory…however, while most may well do, there certainly seem to be some players (clearly in minority) who would often snub the chance to move ship and stay loyal to their roots and clubs unless and until the club wanted to sell such players for a profit themselves….the good guys are too far and few i reckon but they do exist.

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