Higuain, Falcao, Lewandowski or wait for a Wenger-gem player transformation?

Thierry

Thierry

There is no “I” in “team” but there is an “I” in “champions​”!

It happened a few weeks ago. I was walking down the street thinking about the law-suit I’m about to write and about the possibility that we sign Gonzalo Higuain – a striker who has scored over one hundred goals during his spell at Real Madrid – when it hit me. Has Higuain been just lucky to play for Real Madrid – a great club that always has had a lot of quality players who make their strikers’ – including Higuain – job easier; or Real Madrid should have been happy with the fact Higuain has been in their ranks?

The jury is still out on this one, and will probably come up with the final verdict once Higuain proves his prolific abilities somewhere where he won’t have a supply-line like the one he has had at Real Madrid.

Players like Higuain are rarely considered as the big guns. That category is reserved for world-class strikers like Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Falcao, Aguero and Ibrahimović who have proved that they can win trophies for their respective teams, by banging goals on a regular basis and/or when it matters the most. We had had two of those not very long ago but until we find one or pair of those, we can watch statues of them.

Players like Higuain are side-kicks, those who also score important goals but they are second fiddle to their more established goal-scoring partner (in a way Higuain has been joint second fiddle with Benzema to Cristiano Ronaldo). Only those who like to check statistics will know that Higuain scored a goal at every 76 minutes in 2011-12 title-winning campaign, which means he scored more than one goal per game.

Perhaps the best example from the Premiership is another striker who has been connected with us for a long time. When you think about the Manchester Oilers title campaign in 2011-12, everyone will remember Aguero’s goal that was the championship winning one. Only a few will remember a goal Edin Džeko scored to make it 2:2. Džeko has always been in the shadow of Sergio Aguero’s non-disputable world-class quality, Carlos Tevez’ dance between madness and geniality, and Mario Balotelli’s scandals; despite the fact he had, at certain point of 2011-12, a goal-ratio of more than 1,5 goal per game, as it took him less than 60 minutes to score a goal.

Now, look what happened this season: Džeko was the best goal-scorer of City, but Aguero failed to match his performances from the last season, as well as the rest of world-class players from the City spine (Kompany and Yaya Toure), and City didn’t come anywhere near retaining the title.

On the other side of Manchester, United had a striker that delivered in the Premiership what was expected from him, especially in big matches and when United had to come from behind.

Now, what does this whole intro mean to Arsenal? It means a lot, especially given a war-chest that has been given to Arsene Wenger.

If we want to turn our excellent form from the last ten matches into a title contender team, we need a world-class presence in our attack. It’s hard to find a new Bergkamp or a new Henry – those sorts of players don’t fall from the sky on your training ground with the sign “I’m the world-class striker – recruit me!” on their parachute, land on their feet in the circle very close the ball, make a Zidanesque pirouette before making a run to the goal and putting it past a surprised goalkeeper.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I would be over the moon if we sign Higuain as I consider him to be a world-class finisher with a good variety of skills/goals in his repertoire; and to sign Džeko from the Oilers wouldn’t be a bad piece of business either.

However, if we want to make a serious challenge for the title, we have to aim a bit higher.

Apparently, Falcao is leaving Atletico Madrid for AS Monaco but there might be some problems for Monaco if they’ll have to accept the ultimatum made by other French clubs regarding taxes. I doubt that transfer – if it’s going to happen at all – will be announced before the season in Spain ends, so we can still make a move for him and offer him something that Monaco can’t (at least not this season): Champions’ League football, something Falcao hasn’t had lately (and once when he had, he scored against us!).

Robert Lewandowski is my personal favourite but there are huge warning signs, with the likes of Barrios, Sahin and, to the certain extent, Kagawa who didn’t repeat their impact from Borussia Dortmund elsewhere, which is more proof of how brilliant Juergen Klopp is.

It’s no wonder I mentioned Klopp, as there is a longer way to have a world-class striker than simply buying him, and it is connected with Arsene Wenger. Wenger is a manager who can make players over-achieve, can make them cross the thick line between a world-class finisher and a world-class striker, and the one between a world-class striker and a world-class player.

One might paraphrase that thing: “The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world that he doesn’t exist” to say: “The greatest trick Wenger ever pulled was convincing his rivals that Adebayor’s and Nasri’s world-class exists.” If you take a look at the players who left Arsenal for greener pastures elsewhere, only Cashley Cole can say he maintained his level of performances from Arsenal (or even upgraded it). Even Van Judas has had a decline of form in the recent period, while also others who were playing in our attacking department haven’t found their level from Arsenal at their new employers: Nasri, Hleb, Adebayor, even Fabregas, Reyes and, yes, Henry, since neither of them matched their level from Arsenal, while Eduardo’s decline started in Arsenal due to an unfortunate cause.

There is no “I” in “team” – that is true, especially when you know a basic fact that football is a team sport. However, there is a reason why the word “champions” has “I” squeezed into itself, as it’s the brilliance of individuals that make the collective raise above the average.

Written by: Admir.

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209 Responses to Higuain, Falcao, Lewandowski or wait for a Wenger-gem player transformation?

  1. Mak says:

    It is a nice post, I like it very much. You are rite. We need both the team and i players to win trophies. It was like that before we moved to the emirates and i want it back now.

  2. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi Admir 🙂

    Thanks for a beautifully written, and strangely thought-provoking post.

    Nothing is better than to see a player develop at the club to absolute top-level, and you are spot on to highlight Klopp and Wenger’s ability to perform such miracles. Oh how I miss that cheeky confidence of Thierry and Dennis. The total class combined with real love for the club.

    Part of me wants Arsene to sign the top top quality attacker this summer and part of me hopes that Theo or Ox or Gnabry will be our next big player. A combination is probably best but I just cannot see us buy the ready-made top top quality you are talking about.

    But then again, it could be all change this summer. 🙂

  3. James Bond says:

    thanks Admir, it was an interesting read.

    you see i tend to disagree with the notion of 2nd strings strikers or super sub strikers, if you are good enough to change a game or make an impact from the bench then you are good enough to start and have a similar impact as well …when i say this i keep players like Hernandez (man utd) Dzeko (like you mention) e.t.c

    although we would all love a world class finisher and someone who can deliver the goods as soon as we get him as opposed to someone who has the potential to be the next big thing and maturing into that player at some point in the future (Jovetic ? )

    i do agree with you that it’s a team game and the quality around the squad can either make you look world class if you have potential (nasri/adebayor e.t.c) or if you don’t have what it takes then even with the quality around you, one would look out of place ( Modric to RM, Kaka to RM, Torres to Chelsea, Gervinho to Arsenal (am i being harsh) ?

  4. Glic says:

    Thanks Admir, a joy to read !. 🙂

    Just one thing to put right. In the case of Kagawa, I put up a link to a Klopp interview recently and he was dismayed that Kagawa was being used by Manu in the wrong position !.
    I like this chap Klopp, like Arsene he seems to have produced some gems on a shoestring budget and also that he has a wicked sense of humour, my kind of guy, obviously not in an Isco kind of way !. BOING !. hahaha
    Internally, our next big star will be The Ox, midfield, wing, striker, he has it all imo, I will bet money on it and he will be followed shortly by Gnabry, another home banker !.

  5. James Bond says:

    i’m not sure about the rest but i would certainly like to take a very calculated risk and gamble on one Ibrahimović, shouldn’t cost us more than 10 mills, wages might be a problem but if we can find a way round that then he can certainly give us 2 seasons worth of quality up front…

    and in the process give RVP a fight for the golden boot next year and perhaps prove a point or 2 😉

    all in favour of Ibrahimović , please come forward …all against it, go see Dr.Glic 😀

  6. TotalArsenal says:

    Very good points JB 🙂

    Sometimes you need one player who makes all the other attackers look great. At Arsenal under Wenger, we had twice such a player DB and CF, and JW could become such a player, but this might take a while.

    And that is why I am so excited about Jovetic, as I feel he could be developed by Wenger into something very special, whilst being able to contribute from the start.

  7. TotalArsenal says:

    JB – PSG has no incentive to let him go, and especially not for £10m….

  8. Gooner4eva49 says:

    Very good read. Liked it a lot.

    A Henry would be very fitting and I’ve felt (I’m sure most if not all Gooners) that is exactly what we need. An Henry that will run from the centre circle at kick off and grab us a win! Bernabeu anyone?

    But as you mentioned with the unsuccess of exited Dortmund players this is a concern to bring in “established” striker/s. Yes it is a step in the right direction but the fear of a Torres (slight exaggerated statement) is worrisome.

    Which brings me to my next point which has been mentioned. The force from within. Theo. Don’t laugh or scrutinise but I believe, I’m sure wenger too, is Theo is a or will be a similar mould to Henry and is capable of pushing forward to such heights. Maybe not exactly down to a ‘T’ but possibly to give us a step to another level. I’ve always wanted theo at striker, wanted him at afc before he arrived. Yes he can be frustrating and yes he doesn’t particularly suit as our line striker in our current system. He will reach amazing heights if he stays at afc and has a team playing to his advantages. A reshuffle in the offing, a Bergkamp player to acompany him. Who knows.

  9. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi Gooner4eva 🙂

    I have been thinking exactly the same re Theo, but only in recent days again. Let’s see what happens in the TW this summer…

    How is you anyway?

  10. Udozuwe Ifeanyi says:

    Nice write up. I like. Gunner4life

  11. Gooner4eva49 says:

    I’m good thx TA just wish I had Bernard’s watch and get everything I want and need done with time spare to relax and potter and obviously divulging into these posts and have a good laugh with you all!

    I’m still hovering about here, I’m like a family relative spirit, I’m watching over you all!

  12. TotalArsenal says:

    Hahaha I was wondering what that big greenhead on the ceiling was 😛

  13. James Bond says:

    TA,

    right, let’s have this Jovetic detail once more and i’ll try to put my point across.

    as you can see, i don’t deny that Jovetic has potential and hey may turn out to be a world beater , if anyone can turn him world class then it has to be Wenger, also, if he’s scoring 13 goals in 30 odd games then in our setup he could easily score 20 out of 30 games, sure, it’s likely but i feel that Jovetic is not a game changer that we so desperately crave, he might go on and become one but for now on the evidence of seeing him play in serie A it doesn’t appear to be the case…..

    to put it into perspective, if we’re going to be forking out 25-30 million then we would need instant impact or game changing players, who can lift every one up or provide a moment of brilliance or create something out of no where and see us home… the price of 25 million is way too large for Jovetic, where as i wouldn’t mind him seeing in an arsenal shirt but i wouldn’t personally go beyond 20 mills, sure people who are fans of Jovetic would say, if we’re willing to pay 20 million for Jovetic then why not pay another 5 million and secure his services ? well to all such people i say if we’re willing to spend 25 million on Jovetic, then why don’t we fork out a little bit extra and get the likes of Reus/Benzema/Isco/Rooney instead ?

    re- Ibrahimović…then grapevine has it that both him and his agent are looking for a move away from ligue 1 , if it’s true then i can see him leave…and if that is the case then 10 million for a 31/32 year old isn’t bad business for PSG (also the wages they save) ? his attitude might be a problem for Wenger to deal with tho

  14. TotalArsenal says:

    All good points JB, and I can understand you would rather have the names you mentioned, and I would love any of them to come and join us. From what I have seen of Jovetic, I believe he is a Wenger player and that is why I am extra excited about him.

    But Arsenal will not be held to ransom, and it looks like Fiorentina are playing hard ball too. I am convinced Wenger will walk away from a deal which he regards as too expensive, as he is principled like that. But then again, I know nothing about what is going on: it is just all gut-feeling and trying to read between the lines.

    A motivated Ibrahimovic could work for us, but it remains to be seen whether he would fit into our squad. A superb striker though – absolute beastly class.

  15. Milo says:

    You can remove the “cl” from the word “class” and there you have it!!! 😀 Ibrahimovic in one word!!! Seriously, he may be great, but he is a verrrrrrrry divisive figure for everyone at whatever club he is at. Some probably love him, most hate him. I think he is a bit of a clown, but he has toned it down, believe it or not! It would be quite the gamble, I have to say!

  16. James Bond says:

    exactly, TA

    i like you feel that Wenger can turn Jovetic into a world beater in 12-18 months onwards provided he remains fit and healthy , however we know from past experience that soon as Wenger and Arsenal are being messed around by player/agents/clubs during or after negotiations like this (Mata anyone ? ) we have a habit of walking away and looking else where…..i do feel this is exactly what fiorentina and jovetic’s agent are doing , in trying to get the extra mileage out of the deal.

    i am also convinced based on AW saying that this time round we’ll be proactive in the market which means we have plenty of targets and back up targets to go after, if jovetic doesn’t materialize then it’s Jovetic’s Loss, we’ll just have Wilshere /Rosicky to score us more goals next season to fill up that void besides other quality additions (hopefully).

    Ibra, is the complete striker and i always rated him higher than RVP (yep, that’s right even when he was a gooner i still thought Ibra was better)….motivated Ibra you say ? if outscoring your direct rival for the netherland’s team who has kept you on the bench for so long is not motivation then i doubt we would ever find something better to motivate him with 😉

  17. Highbury Harmony says:

    JB, I’ve been meaning to mention this, but you do know Ibra is Swedish right? I think the player you are referring to as a Dutch rival to RVJ is the Hunter, Jan Huntelaar 😉

  18. James Bond says:

    Milo,

    if you were given the option of signing one of David . V and Ibra,

    which one would you go for ?

  19. James Bond says:

    HH,

    finally , better late than never…where were you hiding 😉

    oh yikes, you’re spot on, my apologies, i knew something wasn’t quite right there, ha

    ok, let’s put it this way, the top scorer from ligue 1 would want to come to England and be top scorer in England and knock RVP right of his perch 😀

  20. James Bond says:

    till this day i have been telling everyone how the netherland’s beat us 4-0 thanks to Ibra’s genius and how i have been a fan of his even when he had trouble at barca e.t.c

    time to get a drink i reckon (but hey in my defense both ibra and klaas huntelaar has similar sort of physique ) TA , you should have correct me the first time 😀

  21. Milo says:

    If Ibrahimovic can curtail his antics, yes antics, because that’s what he performs, then it’s obvious who I would try to sign. Ibrahimovic has more of a physical presence and aura of strength about him, than does David Villa. Villa doesn’t pick up stupid red-cards though, although some of this is due to Ibrahimovic’s reputation. It’s a tough decision as both are great players and have performed at the highest level, but I’d go for Ibrahimovic.

  22. Highbury Harmony says:

    JB, I noticed it last time you mentioned the rivalry between himself and RVJ (two articles ago) and wondered what you were talking about, but assumed that you had made a mistake and that it was a misunderstanding. However, I had to correct you this time since clearly it wasn’t a slip up and I wouldn’t want you to continue to spread word to others that a reason you wanted Ibra was because of motivation for a country he doesn’t play for ;).

  23. TotalArsenal says:

    Jambo

    The traitor and the Swede played in the Dutch league between 2001-2004, the former for Feyenoord and the latter for Ajax, so who knows, it might still motivate him to embarrass the ‘Rotterdammer’.

    Realistically, if he is to come to England – and I believe Italy is his favourite country – he will come for lots of dosh which he will get from one of the oilers.

  24. James Bond says:

    Milo,

    his wages might be a problem though but i do agree with your analysis, it’s spot on…with age comes wisdom (let’s hope so in Ibra’s case if we make that statement of intent by signing him).

    HH,

    better late than never and thank you for correcting me, since we’re looking for way to motivate Ibra, let’s say if he joins Arsenal then scoring a ridiculous amount of goals and then proving to Arsena Wenger that he made a bad decision by not signing him when he had the chance all those years ago ? that be motivation enough not that world class strikers need much motivating, keep banging it in the net at the biggest stage of them all is motivation enough , wouldn’t you agree ?;)

  25. Highbury Harmony says:

    Admir :), I have told you this on several occasions but you are quickly becoming one of my favourite authors/bloggers around!

    Wonderful article and I agree with mostly everything you are saying. However, Higuain’s capabilities as the leading striker have not been tested yet and his goal scoring totals at a younger age, in a league that was more competitive than Dzeko’s were in the Bundesliga, have some weight as well that lead me to assume that he could be a class above Dzeko.

    As the focal point of an attack, Higuain could thrive especially when one considers the delivery he’d get from Santi, Jack, Theo, Arteta, Ox, Rosa etc. A lot of his goals at Real come from his own movements/ability to open up space for himself when he has the ball at his feet and he can clinically finish with either foot.

    Falcao is not for me. At £50 million, he will be another bust relative to his hefty price tage and so far has struck me as the type of player who needs great delivery in order to thrive. If we commit too much money in buying an individual player, we expose ourselves to a huge risk too large for AW’s appetite. Also, there are rumours resurfacing that AW is looking at buying Strootman of PSV to replace the oft-injured Diaby and Gonalons to finally be the much anticipated Song replacement.

  26. TotalArsenal says:

    If he could score a goal for us like this in the last minute against the Mancs….

  27. Highbury Harmony says:

    JB, I’m not worried about Ibra’s motivation. Whether he’s motivated or not, he can still score at least 20 goals in a season due to his class and skill alone. Without question, he’s a better striker than the man with a little boy inside of him.

    I’d be more worried about how his personality may isolate him and cause unrest in the rest of the squad.

  28. James Bond says:

    TA,

    the amount of noise Ibar’s camp are generating (this was before carlo.A possible departure to RM surfaced) it seems that he is looking for a new challenge else where…..i can see him going to Germany or coming to England…all this was fast tracked when rumours of Rooney going to PSG started as well.

    but just for a brief moment imagine this,

    Ibra to Arsenal, Villa to Tottenham, Ronaldo to Chelsea or one of the Mancs, Lewandowski to man utd ?

    the EPL will certainly be considered one of the best leagues if not one of the best 😀

    i feel with all this tv money coming in, it’s a possibility !

    good catch that re- feyenoord vs ajax ,

  29. TotalArsenal says:

    JB – I like the sound of this a lot more:

    but just for a brief moment imagine this,

    Ibra to Arsenal, Bendtner to Tottenham, Chamakh to Chelsea or one of the Mancs, Adebayor to man utd ? 🙂

  30. James Bond says:

    HH,

    agreed, he’s a character that’s for sure, no wonder Mario Balotelli and him are good friends 😉

    TA,

    he had no right to score such an impossible goal, not from there no way, what a game he had against us…(well both against us as in England and then he had a decent game against us as in Arsenal when we visited Milan).

  31. TotalArsenal says:

    The goal is beyond believe, JB. The timing and measurement, the technical execution but above all the vision/decision making: UNBELIEVABLE!

    Something that normally only happens in a day-dream!

  32. James Bond says:

    TA @ 22:45

    hahahahahahahah, indeed that sounds plenty better but it would make it far too easy for us , winning every game or not losing to anyone in the league would kinda become boring (haven’t we done that already once and remain the only team to have done so 😉

    Breaking news : Benteke may leave Aston Villa (the biggest kept secret, i don’t think so;)

  33. TotalArsenal says:

    oooh I would love that sort of boredom, JB, it would be total bliss! hahaha 😛

  34. James Bond says:

    TA,

    i’m glad you could day dream about it, it’s hard to score a goal like that on the ps3 or xbox as well , my nephew has tried it many a time without much success 😀

    now then,

    Benteke to Arsenal ? thoughts people ?

  35. TotalArsenal says:

    I Benteke him!!

  36. Jaime Acosta says:

    I think the man to get is Jackson Martinez, the striker of Porto and top scorer in Portugal. This year he has scored 29 goals in 31 matches. He is now breathing down the neck of Falcao in the Colombian national team. It seems Borussia M are after him to replace Lewandowski, but he could be a great asset to Arsenal.

  37. AFC says:

    Admir, top post. 🙂

    We really do need a top class striker. Higuain is not world class but probably is the closest to world class we could get. Playing at Real with world class player could make him seem better than he actually is but the same could be argued about lots of players. Even Messi. 😀

  38. Milo says:

    Benteke could be a real steal if we get him!!! He’d be a great mentor to Akpom, who is an up-and-comer in the youth ranks, who is similar to Benteke, in that he has great physical strength, as well as technique. In fact he has just as much if not more technique (passing dribbling) already than Benteke. What Benteke has over him is his finishing, and ruthlessness in front of goal. I don’t think Sanogo would be a good mentor for Akpom. He’s too young! In fact I would wager that he will provide Chuba with some much needed competition! In fact I would go as far as to say that we are stacked so far as young strikers are concerned! What we need is a more established presence who can inspire and instruct the younger players on what it takes to make it at the top, top level.

  39. AFC says:

    JB, Benteke is a young player with huge potential but I would rather have Lukaku. What a beast. Will never happen though. 😀

    On the subject of beasts has anyone heard of a ST called Traore who plays for Russian club Anzhi. He is 6 foot 8 and a beast like Lukaku?

  40. Milo says:

    You mean Lacina Traore??? 😀 I’ve never seen him play, but have heard good things about him!

  41. James Bond says:

    Jaime Acosta,

    that’s an interesting comment, Martinez has been doing rather well no doubt , but as was Falcao when he was at Porto,

    Falcao plays in the better league now and is still performing at a higher standard, Martinez on the other hand certainly seems to have all the attributes and is a different striker to Falcao,he would slot in nicely at this Arsenal team but saying that , i much rather get us Lewandoskiw from Dortmund and let them have Martinez 😀

    there was a time when i thought hulk was better than Falcao or ahead in the race but it now seems that Falcao has surpassed Hulk….

    one things for sure tho, Porto do have a knack of getting top notch strikers or signing them, same as ATM.

  42. AFC says:

    Hi Milo 🙂

    That is the guy. He is 23 and I saw him playing against Newcastle in the Europa League. He was by far the biggest guy on the pitch. I would say he is better than Benteke.

  43. James Bond says:

    Milo,

    good points but don’t you feel he may well be a one hit wonder ? and perhaps not be able to replicate the same form in his 2nd season ?

    AFC,

    Lukaku might be on his way to West ham utd, i wouldn’t mind him seeing at Arsenal though

    but the trouble with us signing either Benteke or Lukaku is that both may not want to join arsenal because of not being guaranteed first team football or a starting place…..Benteke would want to go to a team that assures him as well as Lukaku, at Arsenal with Giroud as AW’s preference i doubt if we can promise them that….with the world cup next year, i reckon it’s a big incentive for both!

  44. Milo says:

    I didn’t even know he had transferred to Anzhi to be honest. I DID see that match too, but I didn’t really know it was him!!! 😀 I thought he was still with Kuban Krasnodar, his previous club before he joined Anzhi! He’s moved around quite a bit in the past couple of years, and could well be a relatively late-bloomer!

  45. AFC says:

    Milo, I think he has scored 16 goals in 21 appearances for Anzhi.

    JB, agreed. 🙂

  46. AFC says:

    Milo, do you think he would be perform at Arsenal if he was given time?

  47. AFC says:

    * be able to

  48. Milo says:

    Yeah, he can only improve, and I bet it was very hard for Traore to learn how to use his large frame efficiently, at first! We were rumoured to be interested in him a couple of summers ago, I believe, and I thought it would be great to get him, if only for his size and strength! 😀 If he can play too, then what a player he could be!!! 😀

  49. Milo says:

    I don’t see why he can’t improve, even if he’s not with us!!! 😀 If he can score consistently in THAT weather, over in Russia, having come from a relatively warm climate, I don’t see why he couldn’t improve or perform in the Premier League!

  50. AFC says:

    Milo, only problem I saw with him is his movement. He is quite slow like Giroud but can use his large frame to hold up the ball and bully defenders unlike Giroud.

  51. AFC says:

    Milo, he would have Gervinho to make him feel at home if he wanted to join us.

  52. AFC says:

    Milo, also he is not British or playing in the EPL which means he is not overrated.

  53. TotalArsenal says:

    Welcome back HH 🙂

    Night all 🙂

  54. Ehn says:

    Nice post.I ‘d allways dream of Higuin joining us but we lack that intent in signing big names.

  55. James Bond says:

    Ehn,

    we got to show plenty of intent this summer if we’re to put our money where our mouth is or else brace ourselves for another disappointing season….now is the time i reckon and let’s hope we can make a few quality additions..

    TA,

    see you tomorrow then

  56. The BearMan says:

    The player for me will be Cavani or Falcao. We need a player to light up the dull Emirates. A player that will inspire his colleagues and our youth. Wenger and Arsenal no-longer appears to be able to inspire such players. Or is because those kinds of players feel they will have to carry the team.

    But we also know they will feel short changed by the wage structure.

  57. Wolfgang says:

    At the rate Arsenal are dithering,don’t be surprised Arsene doesn’t get anyone.
    He will say it aint necessary because he believes the current players are good enough to win the epl.By then another season will have flown by with the gunners scrapping for 4th.
    It has been like like that the last 9 years and soon it will be ten,if I aint wrong.

  58. James Bond says:

    Wolfgang,

    dithering ?

    the transfer window hasn’t officially opened yet, it opens on the 1st of July mate

    although it will be nice to get our business nice and early and announce the signings before that but technically the window hasn’t opened yet.

    10th season in a row without a trophy does sound rather criminal though…so let’s hope not!

  59. Tomas says:

    There are about a handful of world class players available each summer and twice as many clubs who can afford them. Arsenal, unfortunately aren’t one of them. Mourinho will be allowed to bring in four to five new players to Chelsea, Man City at least a few, likewise Man U, PSG, Bayern,Barca , Real, Juve and a few others. To play at the big boy table ,Wenger would have to spend twice more he’s been known to spend in the past, and I’m not sure his body isn’t allergic to spending money( judging by his attire it might be). I don’t think he would even consider paying more than 14 mill. for Benteke out of principle, let alone 30 mill. There is a free market evaluation which most managers go by, and there’s Wenger’s evaluation. And there’s the desire to win at all cost, the type Ferguson had when he payed 27 million for an injury proned 30 year old striker ,in the last year of his contract because he thought RVP would bring him the title. Wenger would never do that even if he had unlimited budget.

  60. Highbury Harmony says:

    TA, my penultimate arrogance has coincided with both my presence on BK and Arsenal’s transfer window activity to dither, apparently 😉

  61. Highbury Harmony says:

    Tomas @ 0:32, are you Rosicky by any chance mate 😉 ?

    Very, very accurate comment. From a monetary standpoint, one could make the case that we could afford one world-class player. From a realistic standpoint and an examination of AW’s principles, one will come to realize that we cannot afford a world-class talent because they are either a) too old or b) won’t come at a discount below what AW deems as fair market value.

    For AW, paying exorbitant prices is merely another form of mismanagement, and no guarantee of success may come from paying inflated wages/transfer fees. In theory, it makes sense, but at some point AW will need to undertake some form of risk in order to change the tide at Arsenal. The over conservative and safe route can be very excruciating for players and fans alike to accept and believe in, especially with other clubs around us continually strengthening without an emphasis on buying for player value.

  62. Highbury Harmony says:

    There’s an interesting scenario developing, which involves all of our rivals apparently chasing our much discussed TW “targets”. In typical smoke and mirror fashion, AW could get the Chavs to overpay on Jovetic, thus tying up their ST situation for the foreseeable future in him, Ba and Schurrle (maybe Torres too). It would then pave the way for us to walk in and steal Lukaku from right under their noses since there will no longer be a future for him at Stamford Bridge. He will undoubtedly ask for a move away from the club with so many other players potentially blocking his path.

    I’ll take Lukaku over most ST’s out there and he’d represent a shrewd bit of business by AW and be a typical purchase of a young talent with burgeoning world-class ability.

  63. Rohan says:

    Sorry HH, just can’t see chelski selling us lukaku – they’re not stupid enough to sell a possible world-class striker to a division rival (unlike us), especially given that money is almost no object in that part of london; and lukaku has many years left on his contract.

  64. Highbury Harmony says:

    Rohan, what if Lukaku demands a move away ;). Anything’s possible! Lukaku would surely cost £20 million + though…let’s see what the Chavs do first since Schurrle isn’t even confirmed yet! Until they announce a new manager, all moves will be put on hold I’m assuming.

  65. Highbury Harmony says:

    AmericanGunnerFan from yesterday’s article. Brilliant comment mate :). We see eye to eye on the run we went on at the end of last season and we simply cannot expect the continual form in the second half of seasons to last forever. As soon as the schedule becomes tougher, we seemingly crumble and succumb to injuries. The players we currently have as is will not be finishing top 4 next season and we need reinforcements. It’s not just a matter of depth, but an injection of individual top quality is needed and fans are fooling themselves if they look at our current squad sheet and think there is something “special” that can challenge for silverware.

    Another issue is undoubtedly the rotation. AW grinds his players to ground out of necessity and this is a prerequisite because of the shallowness of our squad and a lack of proper rotation early in the season. A few signings this summer with no significant purchases should relieve some of this pressure, but it is ultimately the manager’s responsibility to provide at least 15 of our first-team players with sufficient playing time.

    However, it’s not to say that there isn’t a good amount of promise. Young players like Ramsey and Jenkinson have proved that they will be valuable players for this team, that at worst will be great sub/rotation options. If Ox can reach fulfill his vast potential then we’ll have a very nice dilemma on our hands where AW will be forced to frequently rotate to maintain our squad’s form and as a preventative measure against injuries.

  66. Milo says:

    I think HH could be on to something regarding Lukaku! He and his camp have already made noises about their regret at signing a long-term contract with Chelsea, and his desire is to play a meaningful role at a Champions League club, or a club in contention to qualify for the Champions League. That club could very well be us, if we play our cards correctly! I would take him over Jovetic, Higuain, and even Lewandowski, as he has proven himself as a 19 or 20 year old in the Premier League. That is a very, very hard thing to accomplish!

  67. Highbury Harmony says:

    Exactly Milo, it’s not entirely out of the question to believe that AW could bid for him if Chelsea load up on ST’s this coming TW. He’d be a much better purchase than Benteke imo since he is younger, more physically imposing, faster and skilled with the ball.

    Of course, the only caveat would be if Chelsea would be willing to sell to a relative rival. His market value is quoted at £16.5 million right now, so a bid in the region of £20-21 million ideally would entice them, provided exorbitant sums are shelled out to acquire their targets (Jovetic, Schurrle, Khedira, new CB etc.). The one thing working in our favour would be if Lukaku sees no future at Stamford Bridge under Mourinho/new manager and demands a move away.

  68. Milo says:

    I fear that Lukaku will remain at Chelsea. Remember, he is the closest thing to Drogba, and who brought Drogba to Stamford Bridge??? Mourinho!!! 😦 Mourinho is many things, but stupid isn’t one of them, unfortunately. I would be absolutely gobsmacked, if he sold Lukaku on his watch, to us. He has a terrible relationship with Wenger, at least to the public’s knowledge, and wouldn’t want to strengthen us! I wouldn’t be surprised if we approach Lukaku, or inquire about him. We may even bid for him, but I don’t think Mourinho would relent.

  69. Highbury Harmony says:

    Milo, you may very well be right, but the prospect of Lukaku in an Arsenal shirt is simply too tempting :).

    Looking across at all our other “rumoured” targets, the latest news is not doing us any favours (whatever it’s all worth in the first place anyway). AW often works out of left field, but outside of Sanogo, there are currently no strong links to any players since that of Higuain and Jovetic. However, since those links Juventus and Chelsea have apparently considerably stepped up their interests in or the other meaning that we will likely be ducking out since we will not outbid either club.

    Benteke is interesting, but at £21 million, I cannot see AW bidding for him either. His valuation is very inflated after one successful season and AW will not bid for a player he could have already had for significantly less a year ago (just not his style). That leaves the playing field down to Wilfried Bony of Vitesse, David Villa of Barca, Loic Remy of QPR, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang of St.Etienne, Adam Szalai of Mainz, Burak Yilmaz of Galatasary or some other striker we have not been linked to.

    Would anyone on that list be a good purchase capable of significantly improving our current team? Aside from Bony and Yilmaz (both are not strongly linked), as well as Villa, who’s old, that list does not exactly inspire confidence in me :(. We have to hope that we can at least get one of Higuain or Jovetic, with the former looking a little more likely these days due to Real’s reasonable valuation.

  70. rizal says:

    Forget the top tiers player, Arsenal in for Falcao / lewandowski player bracket is certainly would never happen. Higuain is good enough for Arsenal to win the title but the main problem is we are not even in for Higuain type level of player, we always aim for player below that level. A few years back if we would in for Mata (Higuain level) on his 18mill transfer clause (while the release clause is still valid )and then having Santi the year after = ooooh man we would had great great midfield by now. But then again all of it is just a speculation so hopefully we could keep our patient and hope in check as so we would not feel too dissapointed come 1st of September since this is the bank of Arsenal where security is always a priority.

  71. henrychan says:

    Morning all..

    Admir..al.. Excelent post bro.. you did it again..
    I like the qoute : There is no “I” in “team” but there is an “I” in “champions​”!

    Players from big club is not Wenger type..
    So never hope Higuan or Lewy or even Villa will come.. No way..
    Except for loan.. hehehehe..

    HH.. the more one player is not strongly link with us.. the more possibility Wenger will bring him to Emirates.. hehehehe..
    Yes.. Bony or Yilmaz are my favourite.. Last season I go for Yilmaz but Wenger bring Giroud.. I don’t know this time.. I go for Bony.. and maybe Wenger will bring Yilmaz.. hahaha..

  72. JM says:

    Someone with the character, class, technique, poise and on-field/off-field presence who can do this (in video) and receive favourable comments from legendary players and managers around the world, and is still the top scorer in ECL with 71 goals. A combination of Dennis Bergkamp and Thierry Henry ?

  73. JM says:

    Continued …. and these (proving age is no barrier, at 30+yrs, still scored 40 goals in 98 appearances for Schalke 04 in the Bundesliga, a top flight league in Europe)

  74. henrychan says:

    JM.. Yes he is the man of his time.. Raul is one of the best.. When he was in Madrid.. Barca can’t be to dominant like now.. CR7 is nothing compared to Raul.. Raul is a legend..
    But pity he never could bring Spain into glory.. just like Messi..

  75. jgc says:

    Hi

    Not much to add but that patience is likely needed here. With the TW over 5 weeks out I expect little to be decided just now. Especially with AW. Those 5 weeks will also allow players, clubs and agents to meet and sort out their futures, for just as some players are leaving Arsenal and others are staying, those things are also not yet sorted at other clubs..

    Still the speculation is fun, though Messi in a Spain shirt is not laughing matter for anyone who prefers another Euro national team, or any other national team! 🙂

    cheers — jgc

  76. Gerry says:

    I had a wonderful addition written up .. but lost my internet connection!

  77. Gerry says:

    Well done Admir – beautiful prose hitting all the right notes.

    Sorry I cannot repeat my earlier stuff, it keeps dropping out of the reply box?

  78. JM says:

    Option 1: Invest most of our transfer fees (>€60 million) and wages to contest (with Man. City, Real Madrid, PSG, Juventus etc) for signing Edinson Cavani. (one of the few currently closest to a DB10+TH14 package with his overall class, technique on/off the field, who can either decide a match by himself orcombine with his colleagues to win matches)

    Option 2: Get an experienced and quality “stop-gap” solution before courting Marco Reus (and Jurgen Klopp? if AW decides to move on e.g. either to manage the French national team or move up to our board, sharing the load with IG in managing the corporate side of our club etc) for season 2014/2015, with assistance from our impending new shirt sponsorship deal with PUMA (who endorses Reus and Klopp).

  79. Red Arse says:

    Fascinating Post, Admir, and an enjoyable read. Thank you! 😀

    The ‘phoney’ Transfer Window throws up all sorts of web rumours about Club ‘x’ buying player ‘y’ sitting next to another rumour saying just the opposite.

    Frustrating and pointless, but great fun, too.

    The fact is that there is a lot of money sloshing through football now, some funded out of debt, others from the ‘money men’, but ir means that even the top oiler funded teams cannot be sure of getting their targets.

    Arsenal may have more money to spend than in many years, but we will still find it hard to spend it on value for money players.

    Don’t be disappointed if we only attract 2nd tier, or even 3rd tier players this summer, but gradually over the next 2 or 3 years that will change as FFP and our increasing commercial revenues start to make a difference.

  80. GoonerB says:

    Morning all. That was a well written and interesting post Admir. I haven’t had a chance to read all the comments but my feeling is that the number 9 position is the most important one to get right in this TW.

    We play a 4-3-3 with a player who can lead the line and 2, what I would term inside forwards, that have to cover a bit defensively out wide at times. The number 9 for me has to have a prolific strike rate, be strong, have reasonable pace and importantly for us needs to have good enough technique and vision to link the 2 inside forwards and the most advanced CM’s into the attack. We are not looking for a pure battering Ram but someone that has that quality and is a goal-scorer but also has a high assists rate as well. They certainly don’t grow on trees.

    I like Giroud and want to keep him but for me he is a second choice number 9 / impact sub at the level we need to be looking to get to. Podolski could yet surprise us but he looks like he doesn’t quite have the game for it to me, and I think it would be a risk to start next season with him and Giroud as our 2 options. Looking at the options I would rule out Falcao, Lewandowski and Cavani as I think aside from the transfer fee even wages of £150,000pw will fall short. Sorry Glic I would rule out Isco as he is surely now Citeh bound and in any event is an inside forward not a number 9. I like Jovetic but he looks more attacking CM or inside forward to me and I don’t think even AW legendary conversion to striker history can make Jovetic a prolific number 9 in our system. I will hold my hands up if proven wrong.

    Ibrahimovich is interesting but having turned us down early in his career and not being particularly complimentary of Arsenal in the last 2 years can we really see it happeneing? I really only have 2 names that would be feasible to get but with slight risks as to whether they would be that top level number 9 we require. One is Higuain who I would be perfectly happy to see arrive as I believe he could thrive with us. The other would be Torres. At his best he would have slotted in like a glove in the number 9 role in our current system. The big question is could AW get him back to that level. I am not so sure he couldn’t you know.

  81. Glic says:

    Morning Dildobates 😆

    I just found out that there is a Dildo Island in Canada, how am I not surprised by this HH ? hahaha
    No wonder you blog through the night, your too busy as the Mayor of Dildo Island in the daytime !. hahaha

    If this is true and I`m talking about the wages !. Then whoever sanctioned it is a cupid stunt !. If it be Arsene, then he should seriously be thinking of challenging HH at the next Mayor election on Dildo Island !.

    http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/transfer-news/arsenal-transfers-marouane-chamakh-cost-1907339

  82. Glic says:

    Sorry, that’s a bit unfair, with the price of crude oil nowadays and Chamakh bringing in a tanker load twice a week to gell his hair, £93,000 is probably about right !. That makes Bendtner a bargain on £52,000 per week as he only has to bring in a tanker once a week to oil his rectum for Arsene !.

  83. TotalArsenal says:

    Morning all 😛

    GoonerB, fine comment and many will agree with you. 😛

    My biggest priority is the DM position: get a beast there and the team will make a paradigm jump. The second one is the nr10 and not nr9 position imo. Jack will get there but will need time and can play a bit deeper next season; Cazorla is too slight and not fast enough for it – and I prefer him on the wing in a ‘free-role’. Fabregas, Jovetic or Shrek and this team will start rocking, and don’t be surprised if Theo starts centrally next season. 😉

  84. Glic says:

    Hi Go Boner …..sorry Gooner B !. 🙂

    I posted a little while back that it was rumoured that Arsenal will be off loading players wages to the tune of £350,000 per week this summer, to me, that’s a simplistic two SQ players in on £175,000 per week in my reckoning, so £70M just goes on fee as wages will be paid by the money we save from deadwood wages !. I know Redders will say it doesn`t work that way and give me another unintelligible answer, but I will stick my fingers in my ears and sing la la la la la la la la…..hahaha

  85. VCC says:

    smashing post Admir, a very fine read. Also, good follow up from Gooner B, like your style, I think your spot on.

    My preferred No.9 would be Higuin, as I can see him holding play up,tricky and skilful enough to bang in the goals that a true Centre Forward should be doing.

    Your shout for Torres is not a shabby one either, he was proven with Liverpool but things have not gone his way at Chelsea, Could Wenger get him back to the heights we see at Anfield? This one is a gamble.

    The other one Dzeko, could do a turn for us as well. He is proven Premiership, big strong and can finish, also has a quick reaction from brain to feet.

    Get one of these three and Terry may well be right “The ghosts of the thirties are stirring”

  86. GoonerB says:

    Glic, I agree that getting rid of those wages for surplus players would free up a lot so that bigger wages could be splashed on certain players. The problem is that the minute you bring in one player on £175,000pw other existing players at Arsenal will want a raise to bring them more in parity. Cazorla for instance could argue for £130,000pw if another player is on £175,000. Koscielny for me is developing into one of the best CD’s around and Bayern would probably be happy to take him off our hands and pay him £150,000pw. Doing it for one player would mean we have to renegotiate with many others or risk squad disharmony.

    TA I keep changing my mind about the DM and the need for it. I agree about the number 10 but we must be careful not to overload our squad. Our number 10 in the 4-3-3 is really the most attacking of the 3 CM’s which could be Santi, Jack or Rosicky for me. If we could get a player that could play as an inside forward as well as the attacking CM / number 10 then it would give us adaptability to rotate and not overload in one specific position. Jovetic and Cesc are both a good shout for this but another option could be Ben Arfa, who is a player I really like. His injury record may count against him but technically I think he is a top 4 / CL calibre player and can play just behind the number 9 or play attacking inside right. I think he would flourish in our set up.

  87. TotalArsenal says:

    GoonerB

    Good call on Ben Arfa – could be a good alternative if we cannot get Jovetics all the boxes or super-Cesc (the latter is only a dream).

    I am doing a post on the midfield as it is without any new signings coming in, so will keep my powder dry for now on the need (or not) of a proper DM.

    Re nr.9: here is another thought and the main reason I don’t believe we will buy a top top CF this summer: Wenger bought two strikers last summer and has promised Theo he will get a chance up-front as well. All will get at least another season and there is enough reason to believe they will step it up again next season.

  88. Glic says:

    True Gooner B

    It probably slipped out of my writing, but the main point I was trying to make was that we could have £350,000 per week ( is Chamakh wages inc` in that total ? could be £ 450,000 ! )laying around for some decent SQ ( Super Quality ) players wages, it would be ridiculous of me to think Arsene would pay £175,000 to anyone, but how about Messi on £350,000 per week !….now I`m being ludicrous !…..Squilacci will be banging on Wengers door for pay parity !. hahahaha

  89. TotalArsenal says:

    Wenger might do a ‘Davor Šuker’ though, to add a bit of experience (on the bench).

  90. TotalArsenal says:

    Admir, where are you compadre? You have comments to respond to hahaha 🙂

  91. Red Arse says:

    Morning, TA, 🙂

    “Paradigm jump”?

    Perhaps you are going all star trek! 😀

  92. TotalArsenal says:

    Redders, you are so perceptive! 🙂

    Space: the final frontier. These are the voyages of the starship Arsenal. Her ongoing mission: to explore strange new paradigms, to seek out new systems and new player combinations; to boldly go where no one has gone before. 😉

  93. TotalArsenal says:

    Out for a bit, catch you later alligator (and for Aussies Toodeloo Kangaroo)

  94. alexgunners says:

    TA,
    Toodeloo Kangaroo, Don’t think I’ve heard that in a very, very long time.

    Hi Guys, How are you all?

    Admir, Good post. I would settle for Higuain as I believe that he is a poacher and has a good shot on him. Fair point in saying that he does get good balls in the right areas and in a more frequent basis. I do believe that he would give us a new dimension. Not sure whether we will get him or not but I guess we will all find out soon. Let’s see if in fact there is a war chest or not. Only time will tell.

    All we have is speculation at the moment but i do believe that we need a player of a certain standard and not one that AW will mould into a clinical finisher

  95. Admir says:

    Hello, people! 🙂

    Thank you for a lot of wonderful comments. 🙂 I was a bit busy today as Friday beats the crap out of Monday and any other day when it comes to obligations at work in Bosnia so I apologize for not answering before.

    @TA – let me start with your comment regarding Ox and Gnabry. Ever since I saw Chamberlain in a real action (no, Dr Glic, I didn’t mean on that sort of action! 😛 ), I’ve been excited with the fact he is an Arsenal player. If you ask me, I expect him to be our Wayne Rooney in terms of impact and unique (yes, it’s a bit of paradOX that you compare Ox with someone and than claim he is unique) mix of both technical and physical abilities, only with better looks and without granny-shagging tendencies. The problem is that Ox has been distracted with non-footballing stuff and, at his age, football must be the only thing to be focused on. Simply, his talent and potential require that from him. Whenever I think about his potential and possibility to combine it with Wilshere and Gnabry on the field, I can’t wait to see that vision to fulfill! On the other hand, I’m afraid that Arsenal might be relegated from the league of Top Clubs if no marquee signings are made this summer as well. One true winner would do a hell of a job for our kids’ self-confidence as he would teach them to win. This season was the one when we learned how not to lose (we had only two defeats more than Manure but still 16 points behind them!), let’s the next season be the one when we’ll learn how to win.

    @James Bond – well, it seems that neither Hernandez nor Džeko have made same impact when they were given a place in starting 11 like the one they have made when they were used as super-subs. It might be due to their characteristics or the fact they simply play better when they are opposed to tired legs of defenders.
    Ibrahimović is a mad genius but let’s not forget that he’s the real champion. He has won Eredivisie, Serie A (with three clubs on the field), Primera, Ligue 1…so, basically, there are two challenges for him: 1) to win Champions’ League and/or 2) to win fifth league – Premiership or Bundesliga. The latter one seems less likely as the only club that can sign him, can give him a chance to win Bundesliga and Champions’ League has Josep Guardiola as their manager. I’d go for him as well but, unfortunately, it’s more likely that he’ll join Chavs (some reports are made today) as he likes Mourinho (it’s a mutual thing) and Chavs need a world-class striker to use all potential of their midfield (Ramires, Oscar, Mata).

    @Glic – I’m signing everything you wrote about The Ox and Gnabry. Both of them seem to be players with guts, pace and flair – then, only the sky is a limit. I was sad when Kagawa signed for Manure and not for us but then Cazorla was a real consolation as I saw him Isco-ing in Malaga. 😀

    @Gooner4eva – thanks. Theo has shown some promise this season but he still has those performances when it seems he thinks he is on audition for The Invisible Man. He has improved, that’s for sure, but he can’t play as sole striker in 4-3-3.

    @Highbury Harmony – thanks again! 🙂 Regarding Džeko – he was a real menace in Bundesliga in two-and-half seasons before joining Oilers. He has also became a top player for our national team and the one that was basically winning games on his own (if we achieve qualification for WC in Brazil, his brace against Greece will be the most important part of it). He had problems to settle in England and people here usually considered Mancini to be his enemy and the enemy of Bosnian football in general as Balotelli and Tevez seemed to have an upper hand without deserving it. When Wolfsburg won the title, he scored 21 goals in 17 matches in second half of the season while he and his partner Grafite scored 54 goals combined.
    Now, Higuain’s main advantage over Džeko is pace and more powerful shot. Both of them seem to be intelligent players that can use their qualities in the best possible way.

    Now, I’m sorry, but I gotta go. I’ll return later to answer to the others!

  96. Glic says:

    On the TW front, it has been a bit of a limp dick day on the BOING ! SCALE !. No movement in my Bubble Wrap Y-Fronts whatsoever !.
    Give me an “I”….give me an “S”……give me a “C”……give me an “O”……What have we got ?………..BOING !………that’s better, I needed some movement, I thought I was going to get DVT of the Hampton !. hahaha

  97. AFC says:

    Apparently Higuain has agreed to a 4 year contract to join Juventus.

    We are trying to sign Swansea defender Ashley Williams.

  98. GoonerB says:

    Glic, Ha Ha. You want to avoid a rush of blood to the Hampton if you have a suspected DVT there. You either need to get it anticoagulated or removed. if going for the latter can I recommend Chantelle who lives just off the Blackstock road. She is an expert in these matters.

    T.A on your feelings that AW will not buy another striker because he bought 2 last Summer and still has Walcott to try there, I feel that would represent AW playing a very dangerous game. There is plenty to suggest that none of these 3 will make a top class number 9 in our current system. Walcoott and Podolski may never be that number 9 and may always be best played off of another forward and for me it would represent a big gamble on AW’s part, with regard to fan reaction, to go with this.

    Many of us here and on a couple of other sites are maybe more willing to be patient, but if he did choose this route and it didn’t work out I think the fan disatisfaction would reach new heights, and I think it could represent the end of his tenure. I tend to agree with Admir on that where we could end up being relegated from the top league of clubs and think AW needs to be ruthless in his assessment of his front line now, even if it means letting players more recently purchased go to make way for better options.

    I don’t think we can enter this season with such a key position still being a work in progress. Even the Spuds who have Adebarndoor, Defoe and Dempsey as strikers, and have not made the ECL are looking to upgrade this area potentially with the likes of Damiao and Soldado. I don’t think our fans will react well at all if Spurs do this and we go with what we have got and drop away further, despite sitting on sizeable transfer funds.

  99. Glic says:

    I like you Gooner B (obviously not in an Iscoesque sort of way ! ) and think you don`t blog on BK enough !, so don`t be surprised to awaken one day in the BK dungeons after being kidnapped from AA by Stretch and myself !. By the time you realise from my facial fungus that it`s not Chantelle, you will have been Chloroformed from behind by Stretch and his dodgy jizz rag !. hahaha

  100. Glic says:

    Welcome to the Hotel Bergkampesque, you can check out anytime you like, but you can never leave !. hahaha

  101. TotalArsenal says:

    GoonerB, Wenger always plays dangerous games and does what he thinks is best. I reckon the following will happen – and you can quote me on this if and when I am proven wrong:

    1. No new typical nr.9;
    2. A powerful – Bergkamp type – nr.10
    3. Possibly a DM (80% sure)
    4. Another promising talent, possibly a winger
    5. Big Maybe: a veteran, experienced striker to provide cover and help to break the bigger teams if necessary
    6. Only more new players if key ones are sold

    Of course this is not very attractive to many, but it is nevertheless what I believe will happen, and I for one, would be very happy with that.

  102. may7heaven says:

    Unfortunately it looks like the Jovetic/Higuian rumours are just pre-seasonticket-renewal-hype. In the same way that we have been mugged in the past by links with Mata, Hazard, Gotze…

    I know you don’t buy players based on YouTube videos but anyone who doubts Higuian’s qualities should look at the range of skills and finishes he displays here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zjCDyoGSVTQ

  103. Admir says:

    @Jaime Acosta – Martinez seems to be another excellent revelation by Porto scouting network. However, it’s highly unlikely that they are going to sell him as well after they (apparently) sold James Rodriguez and long-term Spuds target Joao Moutinho for 70 million euros combined to AS Monaco.

    @AFC – thanks. 🙂 You know, it’s a funny thing you mentioned Messi. Not so long ago there were jokes about how Messi can’t score even in his own bedroom if Xavi and Iniesta are not there to assist him. Now, it seems that Barcelona can’t do anything without Messi on the pitch despite having Xavi, Iniesta, Villa, Fabregas…in their ranks.

    @Ehn – thanks. I will wait until 1st September if I’m going to agree with you regarding our intents. It seems you may have a point but let’s offer Wenger another chance to surprise us in a good way. 😉

    @Tomas – hello! 🙂 I agree with your point and the fact Monaco have entered the sugar-daddies’ club did curb my enthusiasm regarding TW a bit. That means another club – and it’s the one that enjoy in tax-free zone which shouldn’t be neglected! – is there to take its share of transfer pie. Also, reports regarding City and their break-through to American market reminded me of stories how City can bypass FFP by founding a brand new club elsewhere. However, with smart management, I believe there is enough fish in the market sea to catch. 😉

    @rizal – you raised an interesting question: what would make an average Gooner happy when he/she makes a review of transfer window?

    @henrychan – thanks, mate. 🙂 Let’s have a drink together, you might like this one: http://www.bonysokovi.ba/images/jumbo.jpg 😉

    @Gerry – thanks a lot, mate.

    @JM – anything that connects Reus with Arsenal shirt has my support!

    @Redders – thanks. 🙂 Well, Yaya Sanogo might be both – an example of a player we are going to bring this summer and a wrong lead for those who want to predict our moves. The thing is, attackers are the most attractive part of the team and the most expensive ones. This summer might bring a lot of moves of highly rated attackers (apparently, Aguero would like to leave City with Real previously stating their interest in him; Džeko is close to the exit and Tevez has been connected with the move to France; Rooney doesn’t have a good history with Moyes; Torres may become unsettled if Mourinho is about to sign a top class striker or give advantage to Lukaku; Benteke stated his desire to play for the club like Arsenal 🙂 …and it’s just a part of English Premier League rumour roller-coaster!) and, who knows, we might end up with someone like Mario Gomez in our ranks. But, like you said, Gooners should be prepaired for the status quo.

    @VCC – thank you. 🙂 Interesting thing about Torres is that – despite losing a guile he once had at Liverpool – he still scores goals, especially in important fixtures. The way he scored a goal against us at Emirates proved that he still has quality and he proved it by scoring in each of seven competitions Chavs played in 2012-13.

    @Gooner B – good point about wages and, especially, about Ben Arfa. I think he is the best dribbler in Premiership. If he can get things straight in his head and stay healthy, he will be a top class player.

    @Glic – I’m imagining Squillaci starting a dialogue with Wenger:
    “Hello, boss. You wanted to see me?”
    Wenger (surprised): “No, I didn’t.”
    Squizz (acting surprised): “Oh, then it must be vice versa.”
    Wenger (looking Squizz in the eyes and scanning for sharp objects on his desk): “Yeeees?”
    S (determined): “I want bigger pay-check now that you signed Messi for 350.000 pounds per week. I won’t leave this room before you agree for 400.000 pounds per week for me.”
    W (dead-pan): “Of course, you have strong arguments for that.”
    S (keeps talking): “Yes, as the matter of fact, I do. I’ve scored more goals than Messi for Arsenal so far. Also, I didn’t make a single mistake that led to us conceding in 2012-13!”
    W (shocked): “OK, you proved your point. Can you please leave the room so I can call Dick Law?” (both of them laugh because of Dick Law’s name)
    Squizz leaves, Wenger makes a phone-call:
    “Hello. Is that Jason Bourne? I have a job for you. Oh, while you are there, do you have some sort of discount for two jobs? I heard Mickael Silvestre is better at using Twitter than in defending…”

    @alex – thanks, mate. Hopefully, we’ll get a finished article as I believe Wenger already has enough material to make top-drawer players in The Ox and Gnabry.

  104. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Admir, great post me old china.

    Now allow me to undress you, errr, i mean give you my input. hahaha.

    I ioath the transfer window. It is mostly a press inspired fenzy very seldom based on facts. It can drive you insane, and in some severe cases inspire you to kill. hahaha

    When we talk about quality Admir, the only quality i want is the ability of a potential player to pass a simple questionere. If they can do this, then they are worth signing.

    1) Have you ever admired Osvaldo Ardilas?
    2) Do you think Glenn Hoddle is good looking?
    3) Do you ever dream of Cockerals sitting on balls?
    4) Have you ever listened to a chas & dave song and thought, thats quality rock n roll?
    5) If you saw daniel Levy in the street, would you beat him up and steal his wallet.

    If you answer yes to any of the first 4 then even if your Pele, your out.

    If you answer no to the first 4, and answer yes to number 5, then even if you names Squilatchi, you have just earned yourself £100k per week. hahaha

  105. jnyc says:

    Very good points Admir. But i dont like the silly headline/title because it sounds like we have a chance to get a falcao cavano type. We can afford higuain, and i think he is under rated by some, which he is if we can afford him.

  106. Highbury Harmony says:

    RA, you forgot to mention that the hope is that things will HOPEFULLY change if FFP works properly and once we start to accumulate profit from our commercial revenue. It remains to be seen whether or not these funds/advantages will actually translate to greater success in attracting top quality players in the TW. If AW continues to balk at the price required to buy top quality talent, then our extracurricular means of raising cash is meaningless.

  107. 17highburyterrace says:

    Like TA I’m keeping my powder dry for the discussion on our MF….Thinking about Arsenal and “World Class” or “Super Quality” strikers seems like a recipe for turning ones mind into a Gordian Knot….It ain’t never gonna happen (as we say…) so why do all that twisting (and shouting)…. But that’s not to say that I don’t appreciate Admir’s post… I do, I do…

    Like others have said, striker is the glamor (glamour) spot and the best ones (and their agents and the teams who have them currently signed…) work it for all it is. The release clauses on some players (Cavani, Falcao) and the wages of others (Ibra, Dzeko, everybody else…) place them beyond the current combo of Arsenal ownership/management. Also, I agree with those who suggest that Chelsea, United and City are never going to sell anybody of real quality to us, so that rules out Lukaku and Chicharito. Moreover, this is the area of the pitch we solidified last season in buying Poldolski and Giroud and giving in to Theo’s wage demands. I like the idea of an aged master or someone who has lived in the eye of the storm (and maybe comes with some injury issues…) like Villa or even Torres–or why not Forlan (if he’s still playing)?, but this sort of signing seems even more off the radar. Why not just bring back Henry?….

    So, this all leads back to the MF (where I feel we must improve) and Jovetic who would play as a #10, which in our world is part of the MF. If the media (including bloggers) thinks he’s a striker and names like Higuain (apparently off to Juve, says AFC…) are linked, it may help with the negotiations. 3 weeks ago those were supposed to be done and dusted, now, apparently, he’s never had contact with us (or his agent is in London, you choose)….

    I try to scan the headlines on NewNow and the BK articles sometimes land in the “top stories” column. This one is there right now…. Obviously, this stuff generates hits (and the idea that one of “our targets” Lewandowski, is playing tomorrow makes it even more newsworthy….) but it doesn’t make it anymore “real.”

    Somethings gotta give, and news, real news, like the grind of the game itself (where nil-nil can be something you actually play for….) is sometimes a whole lot less exciting….As such, I’m waiting for an announcement and trying to enjoy the (beginning of) off-season….

  108. Highbury Harmony says:

    TA, I think the only part where we slightly differ and do not see eye to eye is on the matter of our strikers. Imho, you focus too heavily on the sheer numbers and place perhaps a little too much emphasis on our performances in the last 10 or so games of the season. There’s certainly good promise in those games, but it’s been more or less replicated by our club/squad year after year. Inevitably, depending too heavily on the squad that performed well at the end of the season, where we play less games since it’s only one competition, always ends up leading to inconsistency and poor starts in the first half of the next season.

    Giroud was one of the worst starting strikers in the entire league when it came to chance conversion at 13% and shots on target at 42%. Podolski’s numbers were more favourable since he took less shots on goal, but we all know that Lu Lu has a penchant for disappearing and being inconsistent even within a game. Same could be said for Theo, but he gets a little more benefit of doubt because he’s younger and still hasn’t reached his “peak” yet. Also, one of the latter two players will undoubtedly start on the wing in all games, so there’s still an inherent need for another ST.

    Our entire team’s chance conversion was very poor, relative to shots on goal (approximately 5.4 shots on goal per game). Yes, we managed to score 72 goals in the season, but a good chunk came in bunches and that number is not representative of our strikers’ abilities. 7 came in one game against Newcastle, 6 to Southampton, 5 to West Ham, Reading (relegated) and a 10-man Spuds and 4 against Wigan (relegated) and Reading. As you can see, if you remove those games, our goal production suddenly becomes pretty inconsistent and fairly poor. This isn’t to say that goals in those games weren’t impressive or well deserved, but to display that our goals are far too bunched together and undistributed.

  109. Highbury Harmony says:

    Also, how will our squad adapt to playing proper, Wengerball football again? Will we concede more goals and still struggle to consistently score game to game? These are questions none of us can answer, but only base our predictions on the events of the past season unfortunately.

  110. Highbury Harmony says:

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2329964/Christian-Benteke-wants-Arsenal-Paul-Lambert-says-needs-reality-check.html

    Benteke talking up a move to Arsenal. He said if given the chance to leave Villa for Arsenal, he couldn’t see why a deal could be worked out to help both sides :D. I’d be thrilled to grab Benteke if AW believes he’s the best possible option out there for us based on price, potential and predicted output.

  111. Red Arse says:

    Admir, and HH,

    I absolutely think that we will buy at least two players this summer, and perhaps 3.

    My point was that I do not think we are yet in a position to buy the top tier players this summer, but even Chelsea and Man City may be turned down by Neymar, Falcao and Lewandowski, so it is not just Arsenal that may sruggle to land players of that quality.

    With our substantial new TV money, Puma shirt deal and Emirates deal kicking in next year, I think the next two summers will see us move up into the big buyers league, within the UEFA and EPL FFP rules.

    These new FFP rules limiting transfers/salaries to the amount of revenues earned, and the profit and loss bottom line will restrict the Oily Spenders, but what needs to be kept in check is any attempts to wriggle around them by the usual suspects.

    We will see.

    But let’s not shout before we have been hit, HH.

  112. 17highburyterrace says:

    HH, You’re hitting the nail on the head… But still preempting the discussion of the MF (where the real trouble lies) and it gets into a critique of the squad from back to front, or visa versa….

    We have to build on the good work of the squad in dealing with what they had to deal with once they “cleared” their schedule by being drummed out of the other competitions. The run-in was easy but there was also very little room for error. That we held our nerve should be saluted….

    The flip side is that we looked like utter crap in doing so. Obviously there are issues at the back that only were resolved with dropping the keeper and the captain. We’ll skip MF for now but clearly the 2 for 1 DM idea blunts our attack. That Santi Cazorla, ostensibly a forward in a 4-3-3 is so very clearly another (slightly more attacking) mid-fielder who rarely gets close to goal and mostly shapes to shoot as a decoy, says it all…. Giroud, willing to work, but hardly clinical and wingers Lu-lu and Theo who crave the #9 role but have that disappearing element to their games…Well, it all cries out for a complete makeover….

    We won’t, so as realists, it’s more about identifying the areas of REAL need and trying to find some pieces to those parts of the puzzle….Again, I wait for the article on the MF….

  113. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Harmonious, i am getting worried about you my friend. i see you are switching from one potential target to another and if all these deals fail to materialize i am concerned you will be forced to kill. hahaha

  114. Highbury Harmony says:

    RA, based on past performance in the TW and the general “trend” of AW’s transfer dealings, it is not shouting to assume that AW may not buy the quality of player we need despite having an increased budget to do so. That’s called managing expectations.

    We aren’t even talking about world-class players either. We already know AW will likely never buy players that cost in excess of £30 million, so top tier players are more or less out of the question now AND in the future. I would not be upset if we did not buy them either, as there are plenty of other top quality players to have in the £20-30 million price range. However, it remains to be seen just yet whether or not AW will even spend that amount to bring top quality to the Emirates (which is my point).

  115. 17highburyterrace says:

    So, RA, are you saying that the C-Ron record of 80 million (or better yet Ronaldo plus Kaka for 125….) era is over? Will it now start being smaller amounts in transfer fees but bigger salaries? Will it get (almost) to the point as in North American sports, where it’s all about big money for free agents and (then) trades amongst big teams with near equal buying spending power?….

    Just curious, of course. Maybe (hopefully) you’re working on a post… 😆

  116. Highbury Harmony says:

    Terry, there’s a fat little boy that lives across the street that always needs a neighbour’s help him to chase down the ice cream truck during its daily route around our neighbourhood. He stands at the end of his driveway eating his ice cream cone and is so sloppy that more of the ice cream ends up on his face of running down his arm, as he then tries to lick the ice cream off his elobw. He seems like the prime target to kill if none of these moves go through hahaha!

  117. Highbury Harmony says:

    needs a neighbour to help him chase down*

  118. James Bond says:

    coming back to the Ibra bit,

    well if there ever was a sponsor connection i really wanted to come to fruition then getting Ibra from PSG to Arsenal would be right up there – come on Fly Emirates do what JM has pointed out in one of his articles and make us all happy….i personally see the Emirates factor being an important one if Ibra was to come to England, who knows Emirates may pay a bonus or so on in lowering his wages at arsenal or some other incentives whilst negotiating a contact with arsenal?

    besides PSG owners and AW are quite matey matey…come on Wenger let’s make this happen ! it would be a dream signing.

    in regards to the super sub theory or players like dezko/hernandez/higain being more effective off the bench as opposed to starting then i feel, that in most teams around the world these players would be regular started and not be on the bench…yes, which brings me to my next point

    that’s one of the main reasons why we haven’t been right up there because we don’t have a game changer in our ranks or on the bench, we don’t have that luxury of man city for example when you have

    tevez

    kun

    dzeko

    balotelli

    it doesn’t matter who you start with or bring as a sub, chances are they will deliver the goods at some point or make an impact on the game if not instant but an impact none the less to tilt the game in your favour, that has fallen to dzeko at most times because the amount of competition he has faced..(healthy competition mind you), i rate dzeko very highly and wouldn’t mind seeing him at arsenal either…and i do maintain the point that i don’t believe in the notion of players being used sparingly from the bench like that, if you have the quality you have it from the start against fresher pair of legs and if you don’t then even coming off the bench wouldn’t turn you into a quality striker against weaker legs…

    suffice to say i’m not a fan of wenger’s reliance on scientific calculations of players tiring at the 70th minute mark either 😀 i would like to see him being more proactive with his subs next season provided if we manage to buy a few quality players.

  119. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    hahaha, if i was you i would kill him even if we bought Messi. hahaha

  120. Highbury Harmony says:

    17ht, I’m not saying that a DM is not of paramount importance. In fact, I’m saying the exact opposite. I think a DM AND a ST are complete necessities in order to allow us to play proper football again. In case you missed my comments from two days ago, we need a DM to protect the back four and allow Arteta/Ramsey to unleash/explore their creativity further up the pitch and we need a ST to help convert the chances we do create (which has been very, very poor this season).

    As I said before, there’s a lot of promise in what we accomplished at the end of last season, but to put it in perspective, we still need quite a bit of talent to get us to the top level, playing the type of football our manager actually believes we are capable of/should be playing.

  121. James Bond says:

    now for the rant of the day…

    Ashley.Williams for TV – wtf wtf wtf that’s like selling a merc and buying a ford

    i really do hope these are just rumours and we haven’t signed or made contact with williams, i wouldn’t want us to sell TV, and if we had to then why would we replace him with williams, i’m not a fan of his even if he tried killing the little boy inside 😀 bringing Dj back from germany would be better than signing williams for 10 million i reckon.

  122. Highbury Harmony says:

    Done Terry. You can fly to the US, come live in my loft/attic and we can plot together how we plan to kill him and hide the body (disclaimer: for any authorities that may read this, we are not serious…well I only speak for myself of course).

  123. GoonerB says:

    Admir. I loved your anecdote on AW hiring Jason Bourne. Unfortunately it can never come true because I already hired him earlier to protect me from Glic and TMHT kidnapping me and taking me to the BK dungeons.

  124. Red Arse says:

    Hi 17ht,

    No, I am not working on a Post, because when I get an itch to write, I simply sit and type very rapidly and hey presto it is done. [luckily, that does not happen very often as I do not like writing essay, and never have] 😀

    I am desperately trying not to get sucked into discussing FFP, again, as even I find it boring.
    What will transpire in the next 2 or 3 years as ‘work arounds’ will become evident in due course, as will the Independent Panel rulings as to whether they are acceptable – or not.

    At least now there are ring fenced rules that will slow down the worst excesses of the spendthrift era we have just come through, and will give even the biggest culprits a reason to pause, and think about what they are doing.

    HH,

    I have no objection to you describing your reasons for the negativity you expressed as being expectation management, but as you broached the subject with me, I am sure you will not object to me saying that your nihilistic interpretation is crystal ball gazing at a muzzy future, and is as likely to be accurate as when Gypsy Rose Lee reads your tea leaves. 🙂

    I have no wish or intention of going back over old arguments as to why the transfer purse strings have been pulled as tight as a duck’s ass over recent years, because the need for the stadium building, and our self sustainability model has been done to death, but suffice to say, both the CEO and AW have said that we are entering a new era of improved commercial deals, as well as having brought the stadium debt down to manageable levels, so we will be very active in the transfer window — which incidentally does not commence until the 1st July, some 6 weeks away.

    You, of course, have every right to disagree with all that, but I have nothing further to add on the subject.

  125. Red Arse says:

    Steady on, GoonerB, those two reprobates terrible Terry telescope and Glicster, will see your hiring JB (Jason Bourne – not James Bond, or as he is known by Glic, BJ, or Blow Job) as a challenge, and will only ensure your transfer to the Cornish Love Shack cellars as a matter of some expediency – never to be seen again.

    That’s a pity, as I have always enjoyed your insight. 😦

  126. Highbury Harmony says:

    It’s not that I do not think we will spend any cash this summer RA. It’s the fact that AW is a man of principle, who will not pay exorbitant funds on players who he believes to be worth less than their perceived value. Regardless of whether or not there’s money to spend, AW is still a frugal man at heart who understands that being sensible with money is the only path to sustainability.

    The additional funds from commercial deals and the stadium debt being manageable does not mean that we will be extremely active in the TW. It does, however, mean that AW has more potential to purchase players who he believes will improve this team, who are still valued below what he believes to be fair market value. Again, the increased funds are meaningless UNTIL AW shows us that he is willing to spend the money (I’m not saying it isn’t possible, but that I’m still waiting to see if there’ll be a difference in transfer market strategy).

    To believe that he’ll eventually be bidding for the top tier of players like Messi, Ronaldo, Iniesta, Falcao, Cavani etc. is an expectation that I disagree on you with. We can only agree to disagree on that particular issue.

  127. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi HH 🙂

    I am still going to write about our midfield and attack, in two seperate posts. Suffice to say for now that I have more believe in the qualities, and ability to grow, of our current attackers than you have. I respect your views though and let’s discuss the finer details when the posts are out. 🙂

  128. GoonerB says:

    RA, now that you have described it as a Cornish love Shack I am a little less worried about ending up there.

  129. Highbury Harmony says:

    Also RA, so long as you realize that your prediction that AW will spend frivolously because of the newfound financial freedom is as evangelistic and potentially unrealistic as my realistic, nihilistic view then I would have to agree with you. Because, neither one of us will know what happens until events actually transpire, but of course all we can base predictions on is what has happened in the past with hope for the future under different circumstances.

    Your crystal ball gazes on as muzzy of a future as my own, at least mine (right now) is based on actual, real past events. I’ll believe that AW has the willingness to spend when I see something transpire, until then I’ll remain skeptical and down to earth.

  130. TotalArsenal says:

    Admir, just to say, well done for responding to comments with such focus and depth! 🙂

  131. James Bond says:

    ah, here’s a thought

    why not write a post on most of the strikers available on the market or likely to move to England and out of those likely to be within Arsenal’s grasp , giving it a probability ratio based on one’s own opinion and wishful thinking ?

    after all, our own speculation and list can’t be any worse than what’s being currently reported left right and center,

    or maybe we can all posts our preferences in regards to strikers in such an article ?

    any takers ?

    😀

  132. TotalArsenal says:

    Hahaha JB – you just gave yourself a very fine basis for your maiden post! 🙂

  133. Highbury Harmony says:

    Hi TA :),

    Fair enough mate. I’m not trying to discredit your opinion as it holds some great views and there is a lot to be positive about with this team. I just hope you’re also well aware of the negatives and that there also needs to be considerable improvement in our overall style and conversion percentage!

  134. oz gunner says:

    @ JB

    Sounds like a job for BJ!

    @ Admir

    Cheers for the great read. Looking forward to reading the comments you’ve generated from your post.

  135. Highbury Harmony says:

    Yes, I concur with Oz, sounds like the perfect job for BJ to take on all the strikers in the world and use his extreme skills as per his name to convince them to come to Arsenal…err I mean JB hahaha!

  136. James Bond says:

    hahahahha @ TA, did i just shoot myself right in the foot ? 😉

    nah but i’ll give you all a little teaser and hey this is where Gareth bale gets his inspiration from….and why AVB has managed to transform him because he had something similar or even better at porto…//

    enjoy particularly the last goal.

  137. oz gunner says:

    @ HH

    No need to correct yourself, you have it right the first time…it’s BJ! Although, get him angry and it may only be HJ!

  138. tomstoned says:

    c’mon…we know all about this Wenger charade…hmmppfff…we’ll but maybe three top world class players like that swansea dude…and then we sell wermy and a couple of others add that to the ones who are out of contract this summer…
    that my friends add up..use higuain and jovetic as a way to get us to run to the ticketboxes and renew our season tickets…
    and voila…kronkers and nazidis have done it again…
    The Arsenal is lost forever in that americans pockets…they are all a bunch of lying c*nts

  139. Highbury Harmony says:

    Oz, even worse it could be less than a HJ and just a RJ (rub job, pants on of course 😉 )!

  140. James Bond says:

    oh glicster where art thou ?

  141. Highbury Harmony says:

    JB, I concur that A.Williams for Verm would be a considerable downgrade. Verm’s skills on the ball are far superior to A.Williams, but from a PL defender standpoint, A.Williams is more effective/efficient. Still, if Verm has asked for a move away from the club behind the scenes, then A.Williams would be a decent replacement and a decent 3rd choice CB.

  142. oz gunner says:

    @ HH

    haha especially if you’re wearing jeans! Not enough give in them 🙂

  143. Glic says:

    The Mayors back ! 😆

    HH, How do we address you as Mayor of Dildo, Newfoundland, Canada ?….your Mayorness ?.
    Oh and is the Town twinned with Strapon in Sweden ?.

    I would have loved to be at the initiation ceremony, !. …….” Thank you, fellow Dildonians….I shall take great pleasure in up holding the office of Dildo and always wear the golden strap-on as a symbol of my position, let the party begin on Dildo Day ! ” . I bet you was buzzing !. hahaha

  144. Red Arse says:

    HH,

    I am more than happy to debate with you or anyone else on any subject, provided it is not repetitious, or where it concerns something I said.

    I assumed the first para of your 17:00 was accepted, as read: — AW is an astute man who will only pay the ‘market rate’ if it represents value for money. No dispute there.

    To clarify: I was quoting AW when I said that both he, and the CEO. [Gazidis] have categorically stated we (Arsenal) will be very active in the transfer market, and whether you believe them, or not is up to you. It is not a matter of agreeing or disagreeing with me, personally.

    With regard to AW: you said that he has not shown you that he is willing to spend money, [this summer] and of course this is a truism. The transfer window does not open until 1st July.

    In your final para you disagreed with something I did not say:

    I commented:

    (1) — “that I do not think we are yet in a position to buy the top tier players this summer” and;

    (2) — “I think the next two summers will see us move up into the big buyers league, within the UEFA and EPL FFP rules”.

    The clear caveat was the final part of the sentence, ‘within the UEFA and EPL rules’ and I deliberately chose not to mention players by name.

    I hope you will accept that I am not trying to be dismissive of your opinions, you are welcome to them, However, I fail to see any areas of disagreement between us, as you have misquoted me, in part, and have not put forward any other points that I can agree with, or not. 😀

  145. Highbury Harmony says:

    Glic, as Mayor of Dildo, you should know that we only allow the sexiest of girls within these borders. However, one exception has been that I have given Terry the ability to spy on the city from a distance with his telescope since he has been a good boy.

    You, on the other hand, will not be allowed to be anywhere close to the city and instead will have to reside in Southampton where the cocks are plenty and always pointing south until they are aroused by another man hahaha!

  146. TotalArsenal says:

    jnyc 🙂

    The title was mine and not Admir’s, although we both agreed on it. What exactly is silly about it?

    You see, the idea of buying a top top striker into a team, or to trust Wenger to sort it out either from what we have currently or an unexpected, lesser known striker is at the very heart of where our club was/is/or could go to. The title covers this and so does the post.

  147. TotalArsenal says:

    That must be Tomstoned from svalbard, surely? 🙂

  148. Glic says:

    Southampton it is , as the lowest setting on the BOING SCALE !. hahaha

  149. Highbury Harmony says:

    RA, all understood mate :). Perhaps I misunderstood your comment and perceived it to mean that we will eventually and in certainty be competing for top tier players. I took your comments in reference to AW and IG’s ones to be part of your opinion that we would definitively be purchasing top quality this summer or in years to come, while ignoring the events that have coloured most, if not all, of AW’s past even when stadium debt was not an issue.

    So to clarify, it is not your opinion that we will certainly spend big this summer or eventually be competing for the top tier of players, but you were rephrasing AW and IG’s comments and having faith in what they have said?

  150. Red Arse says:

    HH,

    Oh dear, your 17:04 …… seriously?

  151. Highbury Harmony says:

    RA, I was trying to wind you up as you appeared to be attempting to wind me up ;).

  152. TotalArsenal says:

    HH, as with the ladies, if we can make our footie more sexy, our conversion rate is likely to improve significantly 🙂

    Jambo – you can do it! You write such fine and clever comments that I am sure you could write a quick post on your proposed topic.

  153. Glic says:

    Loved the Squillaci/Wenger files Admir !. hahaha

  154. Highbury Harmony says:

    TA, at what cost though? With our current squad, making our footie more sexy has also meant sacrificing at our own end and letting others through our back door ;). With the amount of chances we give ourselves when we are playing sexy, we still lack closers who can seal the deal (evident from the first half of the season and even in stretches of the second half).

  155. TotalArsenal says:

    At the cost of a DM and a Jovetic hahahaha 🙂

  156. Red Arse says:

    HH,

    As it is you — I will answer your 17:51, but no more.

    –“So to clarify, it is not your opinion that we will certainly spend big this summer or eventually be competing for the top tier of players, but you were rephrasing AW and IG’s comments and having faith in what they have said?”

    You have, again, rephrased and added to what I wrote!

    I simply expressed 2 opinions:

    (1) — “I do not think we are yet in a position to buy the top tier players this summer” and;

    (2) — “I think the next two summers will see us move up into the big buyers league, within the UEFA and EPL FFP rules”.

    If you want to believe your ‘clarification’ obfuscation — then so be it.

  157. James Bond says:

    step aside jovetic, higuain, falcao, lewandowski

    there’s a hulkster coming

    being consistent with my earlier mentions of players wanting to play at the better teams and leagues around the world in order to make a stronger case for their inclusion in next years footy wc ? yep, it hasn’t quite gone to plan for the hulkster in Russia….suffice to say the racist elements have also been a factor there, if we were to spend 25-30 million then i will be very happy if we managed to get the Brazilian (besides, when was the last time we got a decent brazilian acquisition ? about time we get ourselves one of those classy footy south Americans as well.

    TA, although i appreciate all the nudges, encouragement , praises and subtle pushes by all of yous including OZ, HH,RA (in their own unique way 😀

    suffice to say i am flattered but let’s just say i’m a master of all trades and jack of none when it comes to commenting on all the wonderful posts here.

    PS: that was intentional 😉

  158. Glic says:

    What a match that would be !……..The Mayor of Dildo`s prettiest girls….Versus…..The Lesbanians of the Glicdom !……I think we will need an Executive box !.

  159. Glic says:

    Tickets for a Stoke game or tickets for the above ?. If you cant decide….just toss !. hahaha

  160. Red Arse says:

    Glic,

    Are Lesbanians your short hand for Eastern European Lesbians?

  161. James Bond says:

    on a slightly different note, Mark hughes might not be a decent manager but he has managed to bag himself world class agents, they always seem to get him top notch deals, maybe we should use his agents to sell the likes of Bendtener and Denilson .

    😀

    Hughes at stoke possibly , argh.

  162. TotalArsenal says:

    JB you are a tease and ‘glad als een aal’ as the Dutch say hahaha 🙂

  163. Glic says:

    I have to be care full not to upset any women who bat for the other side Redders and was reprimanded on another site for using such words as Lesbians !. So I will leave it to your instinct as to whether Lesbanians are Lezzers !. hahaha

    I have already introduced my own version of FFP in Lesbania !……….Fit F**king Pussy !. hahaha

  164. Highbury Harmony says:

    Fair enough RA, I guess we can only agree to disagree on point 2. UEFA and FFP rules or not, I cannot ever see AW competing for the best players available on the open market. I can, however, see AW breaking his record transfer fee sum though. Your point 1, is in essence, what I believe will continue so long as we have a frugal manager, board and owner who are very economical and have relatively low appetites for risk.

  165. Highbury Harmony says:

    Great, that’s just what we needed a new rumour linking us to Schurrle now that transfer negotiations with Chavs have apparently broken down. In the end, Chavs will somehow beat us to his signature yet again hahaha!

  166. James Bond says:

    HH,

    re- 3rd choice CB then personally i wouldn’t want Williams, he is too error prone and most of his errors were covered by the outstanding form of Michu this season.

    if we to buy a CB then i much rather go for chris samba, he’s imposing and a potent threat both at the back and front , suffice to say we were interested in him when he was at blackburn as well….if we’re offering 60 k and 10 million for Williams (supposedly) then i much rather us pay 6-8 million and 65 k wages for samba.

    if not samba then other options should be also looked at in the 10 million bracket (mind you , 10 million may get us some decent acquisitions at 3rd choice CB).

  167. Highbury Harmony says:

    JB, I would take N’Koulou above both the aforementioned players. He’s younger, has a much higher ceiling and will be afforded time to adapt to the league and be ok with being a 3rd choice CB. However, if the inevitable injury bug hits us, we could face some trouble, which is why keeping Verm is pretty essential.

  168. James Bond says:

    re- Schurrle, that’s an interesting one….

    everyone thought it was a done deal to chelsea similar to our deal re- jovetic in the bag…

    wouldn’t it be even more interesting if we got schurrle and jovetic went to chelsea ?

    are you a fan of schurrle @ HH ?

  169. James Bond says:

    HH,

    agreed, anyone will do but not Williams for me, i’m not sold on him for 10 million, we could do much much better than him, let liverpool have him i says…..he has had a few decent games, but then again so has squillaci in his time 😀

  170. Highbury Harmony says:

    JB, I’m undecided on Schurrle. He’s more of a wide player than a dedicated ST and he has yet to break the 20 goal mark in the Bundesliga, while already being 22 years old (generally to be considered a world-class striker you have a history of being prolific at an early age). If we’re going to spend £20-25 million on Schurrle, why not just spend £25-30 million on a more established forward with a higher ceiling in Reus? He also has CL and Euro Cup experience with Germany too.

  171. James Bond says:

    Reus is your BOOING , i know i know, i would also love to see Reus at arsenal…but trouble is would Dortmund want to sell 3 of their most prized assets in one season (gotze sold, Lewandowski most likely going, and Reus ) ? i don’t know if this exodus will make him want to leave or make him want to stay and be the star of the show…..maybe we can get Rosicky on the phone and have a word with the young lad ? 😉

  172. 17highburyterrace says:

    Good stuff here this morning (or Friday evening….nobody has a date?….)

    007, I’d give ALL the striker links with Arsenal a .00001 percent chance of happening….Like I said, we sorted that part of the pitch last season…. 😦 Still, I like the idea that the Hulk could be moving and, since he and Arsene both spent some time in Japan maybe that could be the commonality that brings him to North London… As such, I’ll rate his signing at .00002…..

    Also, nice to see RA and HH working it out above…. But wasn’t HH the same guy who was talking about wanting both Higuain AND Jovetic (or maybe, a couple weeks back, Jovetic AND Cesc)…. I guess I need to realize that you enjoy the flights of fancy and maybe have the same multiple personality disorder as I (do). Maybe you need a couple of different screen names…. Is “N5 Nihilist” available?….(And if it is, maybe, I should grab it…..)

    So, anyhow, I don’t mean to throw a damp squid on the proceedings….But speaking of Cephalapods…What does Paul the Octopus have to say about tomorrow’s CL final?….

  173. Highbury Harmony says:

    17ht, what I would LIKE to see happen and what I will THINK will happen are two entirely different matters mate ;).

    I want to have both Higuain and Jovetic at Arsenal, but I do not think that we will get both. We’d be incredibly fortunate to even get one at this point!

  174. 17highburyterrace says:

    Also, I don’t get to see a lot of German Football so I can’t match you guys comment for comment in scouting those guys (who have just about zero chance of ever wearing our version of the red and white)….But….if we’re talking about guys who were really good in Germany but hardly used in England (Klopp’s comments re: Kagawa)….How about that Marko Marin?…. (Another possibility for Bond’s first post about the worst transfer of the year….)

  175. James Bond says:

    17ht,

    it’s Munich’s for me, i have always fancied them to win this season…besides makes it better for us if they win, as we only got beaten by the winners of CL (yet again) if they win, ha ha ha

    i know HH and some folks would want dortmund to win but i just don’t see it happening based on this seasons psychological advantage and upper hand of BM….and let’s be honest, lightening doesn’t strike thrice 😀 (it was nothing short of a miracle how chelsea won last years final as well)

    Dortmund would be hurt and hungry tomorrow no doubt but BM will be very motivated.

  176. Dylan says:

    That was very interesting view on strikers. I share similar views on strikers, but usually in a reverse way. You said that players with amazing supply lines (like Higuain at Real) may not be as good with a lesser supply line. I tend to see it like players who score goals with a lesser supply line could score more goals with a better supply (ex. Benteke). As for which striker I’d prefer, I’d say sign Lewandowski and Higuain! Learning to rotate may be hard but when Manchester City have good enough players to leave someone of Dzeko’s quality on the bench, we need to have a bench that matches that quality. 🙂

  177. Highbury Harmony says:

    JB, I doubt Dortmund would sell, but there’s no reason as to why we could not tempt them with an ambitious bid. What I’m saying is that a bid of £25-30 million would certainly give BD a lot to mull over and it’d only be £5 mil more than we’d be paying for a player like Schurrle. Instead of sacrificing what is miniscule amounts in the big picture, we should pay that differential to get the player we want (i.e. buying Podolski over Reus because he was a few million cheaper).

    In either case, I’d much rather see a more proven, dedicated ST like Higuain at the Emirates than Schurrle.

  178. 17highburyterrace says:

    Gotcha, HH, and if you don’t want to cop to the multiple personalities (or different usernames) maybe you could cut and paste something about which side of your mouth (or which end of your body) you’re speaking from….

    Just kidding, of course, but I actually get a little depressed when I read all the speculation about things that have an infinitesimal chance of actually occurring…. Any tips on how to handle this problem? I’ve got pretty good access to a doctor who will proscribe just about anything…. (So, obviously I try to use humor, or humour, but even I run out, when I compare it to stark reality….)

    Nice prediction on BM, Bond….and I think you’re right–and how nice that Goetze will sit due to “injury” or is it because loan rules prevent him from playing against his parent club?…. Munich could (italics) have trouble if they try to sit back as they did against us. They just need to fight the mindset that it’s their trophy to avoid losing. All told it could have a few goals in it, which could be fun….

  179. Admir says:

    Funny thing: apparently Porto sold Rodriguez for 69 million euros and Moutinho for just one million so they have to pay just 200.000 euros to Sporting as their deal for Moutinho had a 20 percent future fee clause. It’s so funny I’m still laughing. 😀

  180. Fred says:

    Great post Admir, although I do disagree with tyou on a couple of points, but hay thats what opinions are for right?

    Don’t get me wrong I would love for us to sign Falcao, but with the 70m we have available I would like to see us sign a world class striker AND a world Class DM. My fear is that if we speant £50m odd including wages for Falcao. We would not have enough to buy a world class DM in addition to him and that could lead to us mounting less of a serious title challenge.

    For me Higuain is the best bet, as he would be cheaper than the other two and in my opinion gives us exactly what we are lacking – a clinical finisher. Also as you mention Dortmund players have a similar history to arsenal players in under-achieving at their next club which gives me doubts about bringing in Lewandowski. I have repeated this so many times that other people on this site will probably be getting seriously annoyed with me, but I think the 70m would be best speant bringing in Higuain and Lars Bender and then ensuring that we keep the big players at our club.

  181. James Bond says:

    blimey,

    the traitor rubs it in to our own piers morgan, (hilarious if you’re a neutral 😉

    http://www.101greatgoals.com/blog/robin-van-persie-sends-arsenal-fan-piers-morgan-pictures-celebrating-man-united-title/?

  182. Highbury Harmony says:

    17ht go see doctor Glic hahaha! Honestly, I just get excited by links to new players and never really put any stock into any of rumours. I enjoy envisioning what our club would look like with certain players, but understand my hopes and dreams will likely never come to fruition.

    The only time I get upset would be confirmed deals by reputable sources (BBC, skysports etc) that ultimately fall apart, the Mata deal for example, or when we spend money unwisely when other targets of perceived higher quality are bought for the same, less or slightly more money (Gervinho deal has always baffled me, AW stating that he did not believe Michu was up to Arsenal standards at the time, Poldi over Reus, Giroud over Benteke etc.). Of course it’s impossible to accurately predict how a player will perform in and adapt to the EPL, but it’s just as frustrating when I (not a pro scout) can see better purchases that we could have made at the time.

  183. Highbury Harmony says:

    Latest reports suggest Arsenal never had any contact with Fiorentina for Jovetic according to Prade. His agent, Radamani claims Jovetic wants to stay in Italy and play for a winner.

    All the earlier speculation stemmed from that UEFA representative and was blown out of proportion.

    More smoke and mirrors from AW and Fiorentina? Or perhaps the truth? Hmm…

  184. James Bond says:

    smoke.

  185. 17highburyterrace says:

    OK, HH, but I think I’ll take his Agony Aunt advice instead of an office visit in Cornhole, er Cornwall…. 😆

    Yeah, if you combine Arsene’s (over-)optimism (hubris) with his fiscal frugality (conservatism in the market) and the weight of the pressure and scar tissue which are amassing (year upon trophy-less year) it seems that spreading the risk with lots of good value buys seems to be the new policy. He’s hit some real winners with an out of left-field buy like Koscielny, but the upside there seems limited due to age. (And the same could be said for players like Santi and Arteta and Poldi, Giroud and Gervinho–all who approached but didn’t surpass the cost of Arshavin….) Big buys of younger guys. With zero plan for transition in terms of ownership/management, why should we expect a change? The rhetoric has been the same for quite awhile now, I think, if you were to go back and look at some of the Gazidis statements….

    The bottom line for me is that I don’t really see us trying to do more than solidify (italics) our hold on being England’s #4 club while hoping that the teams above us create more trouble than success with their player (and manager) churning activities. There is a measure of hope in that regard given the depressing actions at City and Chelsea (not to mention FFP….) and the big change (SAF for Moyes) at United. Still, like I say, I don’t want to rain on anyone’s parade, but a wise man once told me that the key to happiness is low expectations…. So, even though you’re the “realist” ;), I’m with RA on this one: active in the window (i.e., 2-3 more signings, Sanogo counts….) and breaking the transfer record, maybe (on Bon-o Jovi–and hopefully–a mid-priced DM and maybe a cut-rate keeper)…. Sorry 😥

  186. Highbury Harmony says:

    17ht, from what you just wrote and from my understanding with RA, you don’t agree with him at all! In fact, you actually agree with me ;).

    His point #1 was one we all agree with and already knew; AW will not be chasing any world-class players this TW.

    His point #2 was that we will eventually chase them under the new UEFA and FFP rules, which will give us better access to those players.

    However, you said you do not believe that we will ever be a club that chases the big signings and instead will be a club only ever competing at low risk, lower return buys with more of a chance of being productive players than grand slam type, young talents. This is in essence what I was trying to say. The increased budget will not lead to paying inflated transfer fees above perceive player worth. It will lead to quicker replacements of players like for like and to be able to purchase reasonably priced players that can strengthen our squad.

    Perpetually stuck as a club competing for 4th in terms of transfer activity is slightly harsh but in a way could be true if the current holding pattern is not amended. Let’s see what happens this summer an if the rumoured massive changes at the other top clubs benefit us or ultimately put them even further ahead in an increasingly mad money football world.

  187. Naija gunner says:

    For the little I can remember arsene has never bought world class strikers, he made them at arsenal. I think strikers and mid field players are his strongest point against defenders and goal keepers. Honestly , I can’t see wenger sign any striker in a higher mould than jovetic or benteke.

  188. James Bond says:

    Naija gunner,

    there are 3 types of managers out there for me….

    1: the ones who don’t mind spending in fact offer hold their clubs to ransom for a player or transfers and unless they get what they want they are known throw their toys out of the prom ? (Roberto Mancini/ Jose.M/ to an extent AVB as well)

    2: then you have manager who evolve with time, they focus on what they have and don’t mind spending big when they see a top notch quality player out there ( Fergie e.t.c

    3: and then you have managers who refuse to evolve with time and accept that the market has moved on and it’s no longer what it used to be a decade ago…even if they have the resources available at their disposal they much rather look for the cheaper alternatives …which means selling a player for 35 million and then replacing with a 10 million make do one or someone with potential ( i’ll let everyone guess the name or names of such managers, here’s a hint there’s not many who act on such philosophy 😉

    it’s imperative for our success and future success that we’re no longer seen as being reluctant to spend big if the opportunity and right player awaits or else the future may not look promising.

  189. Highbury Harmony says:

    JB, I don’t quite understand the third type of manager. I will need some examples in order to paint a clearer picture in my mind.

    Also, what about the fourth type of manager who is forced to work under certain parameters and has no choice but to buy players on the cheap, stick with youth and sell their better players because the top clubs come calling?

  190. Highbury Harmony says:

    After writing that comment at 22:01, it’s scary to realize how we’ve become very similar to that club with the fourth type of manager…of course, we were still able to deliver results under extenuating circumstances but at what point do players stop viewing our club as a top one? Has it already begun?

    http://www.ibtimes.com/sportsnet/arsenal-transfer-commentary-stevan-jovetics-agent-trying-force-move-juventus-1277629

    This article really gave me a lot to think about in terms of how our club may now be perceived. As you said JB, let’s hope that we can actually bring in the level of player who will quash this growing notion that we are a feeder/not top of the table club.

  191. James Bond says:

    i’m not sure how to hold this brush and paint this managers name on the canvas for you,

    but allow me to touch upon a club that you so fondly happen to support as well (you must have a habit of supporting clubs who have financial restrains or struggle financially 😉

    so where was i, yes yes, this “other club” who was in a far worse situation than ours and nearly went bankrupt manages to win title after title whilst still working under financial restrains and delivers the good….and if i’m not mistaken this club also had to sell it’s best players to them sharks out there …and just so the picture is a bit more clear this club happens to be in this years CL final 😉

    although, there is a part of me which has an element of sympathy with this fourth type of manager (as you call him, for me he’s the 3rd one from my examples)….however, looking at the bigger picture and in hindsight , it’s not his get out of jail card…year after year we have been sold hopes and so on, one after another….for e.g. we’re gonna replace replace Adebayor/Eduardo and so on adequately we’re getting this morrocon bloke from france his name is Chamakh, the next big thing oh wait, we don’t wanna pay that much money for him so we’ll wait and get him on the free an year later because this lad wants to come to Arsenal as well…but he’s the real deal….

    it’s not that he didn’t spend any money, the money he did spend in large parts was spent on mediocre signings…you yourself have mentioned that, it would have made more sense had he not bought some players just to make the numbers up.

    last but not least, we if can have the deadwood on more than 50 k a week then dare i ask ” what financial constraints” ?

  192. James Bond says:

    *you yourself happen to mention such signings as an example , one of them already exists in this article

    thanks for sharing that link, it’s sad yet true, no ?

  193. Highbury Harmony says:

    Bayern nearly went bankrupt?! Sh*t mate, I had no idea!!! They have won title after title, which is very impressive and are indeed in this year’s CL final ;).

    On a serious note, Klopp deservedly falls under the category of the 2nd type of manager, but it’s difficult for me to say that AW has not evolved at all. In a way, he has had to learn and adapt to the new TW, along with the injection of money and was slow to transition with the times.

    However, he has (hopefully) learned from past mistakes and has started to look into buying more established players priced at a discount relative to player value (Monreal and Santi come to mind first, simply because you should not be able to purchase two Spanish Internationals at the prices they were acquired at). Also, it’s difficult to separate whether AW was slow to evolve to the changing TW or whether paying back the stadium debt severely held him back from being a key player in signing the players he wanted. However, as you stated, AW has spent money over the years and unfortunately just as many of his successful purchases have been met with failures.

    We also don’t know what the future holds, so all we can grasp onto is faith that he has learned from his mistakes and that he will not be doomed to repeat history! As they say, onwards and upwards 😀

  194. Highbury Harmony says:

    JB in a way it is true, but I am hoping AW can rectify the situation this summer and start to turn this team around. All it takes is one or two top quality signings to really turn this club around and bring us back to the upper echelon. I’m not saying it’ll guarantee us silverware by any means, but with the right amount of luck and injection of talent, maybe we’ll surprise and make some deep cup runs or even finish 2nd next season ;).

  195. James Bond says:

    let us keep our fingers crossed and i for one sure as hell hope so,

    in wenger we trust 😀

    well if we’re doing next year predictions already then the following would be considered acceptable realistically (for me) :

    1: finish top 3 in the PL at least (it would be a miracle if we won the PL realistically in the next 2 years with the likes of chelsea getting stronger than ever and new recruits at man utd and man city)

    2: winning the FA cup

    3: winning the Capital cup or least making last 4

    4: making the semis CL at least or minimum QF’s

    i’ll be happy with that

  196. Highbury Harmony says:

    Hahaha JB those are very, very lofty expectations mate! Winning both the FA and CO cups will be no easy feat, especially considering our gruelling schedule with CL footy too (not to mention the stupid International games).

    My hopeful predictions for next year would be:

    1) Finish top 3 in the PL

    2) Make the semis of the FA Cup.

    3) Win the Capital One Cup

    4) Make the Quarter finals of the CL (if we win our division we could get an easier round of 16 opponent)

  197. Highbury Harmony says:

    Hmm, I still don’t know about Rooney JB. In a way, he would be the perfect signing, but his attitude and off the pitch issues are concerns for me. Of course, he would be the statement of intent needed to bring us back into the discussion of upper echelon clubs, but at what cost? Will his exorbitant wages isolate him from the rest of the room? Will he feel entitled to being the man who carries our team, neglecting all our hard work in honouring collective team play? Will he demand a transfer away from the club if we do not win silverware?

    Too many question marks for me! Although I’ll admit, I would be over the moon if we could land Rooney or a player of his caliber!

  198. James Bond says:

    do you blame me ? i’ve waited no less than 9 years for a trophy, i iz starving mate 🙂

    if we get wayne rooney then i shall be over the moon as you already know i have been quite vocal about having shrek at the emirates and link up with the british contingent, the link up play between Rooney/wilshere/Theo was a key factor when England played Brazil….

    oh yes, we dream once more 😉

  199. Highbury Harmony says:

    Haha JB that would be quite a dream, I guess for me it’s both important to acquire top quality players but to also not disrupt the balance and chemistry in the squad right now. However, with that said if Rooney is controllable (on the pitch he’s not nearly as much of a head case as he is off of it) then he will surely also help keep top players like Santi and Koz at the club too! If anyone can manage Rooney outside of SAF, it has to be AW.

  200. Glic says:

    My hope for next year is the same as every other year !.

    1) We beat the Spuds home and away !.

    2) As above, if we meet in any cup competition !.

    3) We finish above the bastards !.

    4) Anything else is a bonus !.

    5) I hate the bastards !.

    6) I`m now going to bed to dream of ways of destroying the bastards !.

    7) Good Night Bastards !.

  201. 17highburyterrace says:

    Sorry boys, had to dash out and get my kid…And then we went to the library where he got a book on Soccer (football) and told me that Arsene is the 3rd most successful manager of all time behind Rijkaard and Mourinho….

    So, I’m starting to get it….It’s all just “dreaming out loud,” while being attuned to the harsh realities of the situation here at Arsenal….And RA is more of an optimist than all of us because of the way he counts the beans….or hopes the beans may fall given the FFA stuff…. 😀

    It’s all a question of perspective, I guess…although the twisting of words (and the poor memories of us older folks) to come up with “arguments” (what’s so wrong with agreement, mr. harmony?…) and I think we’re all more or less on the same page…. The bubble has to deflate (if not burst) and we are increasingly better prepared to compete financially through our frugal ways. That nobody will hold us to ransom is either a good or a bad thing depending on your view about the player(s) in question….

    For me, the biggest issue is wages, but they are often glazed over because the info is so sketchy. In the North American sports, even back when I actually followed them, it all seemed plain as day and the salaries and length of contract was all public record. Instead with football, we take (agent planted) valuations as gospel while speculating about salaries and contract lengths. My grandest point, if I have one, is that the one model has got to move towards the other and that “sustainability” is good for everybody. Players need it so that they appear to value trophies (glory) over money (or bling) and their “next move,”and clubs need it so that they don’t keep pouring money down a hole (the Oilergarchs/Debtors) or feel the need to sell their best players year upon year upon year. It’s sad that Goetze has played his last game at Dortmund and that tomorrow is likely the final match for Lewandoski (and who else?…) in yellow….

    All we’ve got going is that we’ve been winning with the squad we have (albeit in ugly fashion and against lesser teams) and that Arsene was once known for finding gems in the rough…. Who’s to say that Sanogo doesn’t have more glory ahead of him than Falcao? (The same guy who has compared Theo to Messi….)

    Finally, on my scale of transfer likelihood, where Falcao and Lewandoski represent .00001 and Hulk represents .00002, I will put down Wayne Rooney at .000005…. At that rate you literally have a better chance of flying over the moon than we do of landing him…. 😆

    My goal for next season, is a CL place guaranteed by the 10th of May….All else is gravy….

  202. Dylan says:

    Next season predictions/expectations?
    🙂
    1: Win the Capital One Cup
    2: Semis of the FA Cup
    3: Make a surprise run at the premier league title (but probably finish in top 3)
    4: Make sure Spuds once again have no CL Football
    5: Attract world class players

    🙂

  203. James Bond says:

    let’s just say AW trained and made RVP exactly as SAF would have wanted and in return if we manage to get shrek then it will be exactly what AW would have wanted from any of his players,

    Shrek’s work rate is outstanding when he puts in a proper shift, you could see his shoulders drop as soon as RVP went ahead of the pecking order and also got the nod to take the penalties (not that shrek is great in taking penalties tbh)..

    but check this out for a pass (ignore the finish, i strongly urge you all).

  204. Highbury Harmony says:

    Actually JB, Rooney told RVP to take the penalties mate or so it was widely reported. After Roo missed a penalty early in the season, I remember him saying in an interview that he no longer wanted to take them!

  205. James Bond says:

    of course he would say it in the open like that , do you honestly expect him to come out and say ” the boss has relieved me off these duties” absolutely not, nothing happens or happened at man utd without fergie wanting it.

    any striker who tells you that he has given his penalty duties or allowed someone else to take a penalty on their behalf is simply trying to sell you a lie or he never actually was a striker….. these strikers are greedy greedy people i tell you or let’s say designated penalty takers are i reckon.

    i’m not sure if any of you would remember this but there was a time when it was the last game of a season for chelsea, they had it all wrapped up and were winning by a 2 goal margin ? drogba needed one goal to win the golden boot for 2009 if memory serves, and there you go, a penalty awarded to chelsea…..drogba pleaded and pleaded with lamps to let him take it, but fat frank didn’t let him take that penalty even though the game, the title was wrapped up….yep, droba wasn’t a happy bunny and still went on to win the golden boot that year…

    if you’re gonna believe what rooney said re- letting RVP take the penalties then that’s fair enough but i don’t buy it.

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