The sad demise of Arshavin is a transfer lesson for us all


Arsenal’s number 23 became 32 yesterday. After almost four and a half year at Arsenal, Andrey Arshavin is almost certainly leaving the club in a few days time. I cannot help but feel a bit melancholic about Andrey’s gradual demise: with just seven appearances – mostly, if not all, as a substitute – no goals or assists, it has been an abysmal final season for the diminutive Russian.

The big question is where it went wrong for Andrey and how much he is to blame for it.

When he first joined us in February 2009, he had a great impact on our season: in 15 appearances he managed toproduce 15 goals/assists, which is a fabulous return for the position he played in. In the following two seasons, Andrey roughly managed a 0.5 goal/assist per game return, which is still okay.

However, things went rapidly downhill after that at Arsenal for AA23, with him only managing two goals and four assists in 26 appearances in 2011/12. It looked like Andrey did not care anymore and/or he did not have the required fitness levels anymore to make it in Wenger’s team.

Maybe he suffered as a result of the departures of Cesc and Nasri, or maybe he just did not want to play on the wing anymore. He seemed best suited for the central AM/nr.10 role – a position he preferred to play in as well – and it is hard to tell why Wenger never gave him a proper trial there.

Andrey Arshavin is the sort of player we all loved to do well. When he is good, he is very good: simply a joy to watch. He had that little bit extra at times: the ability to combine a high level of technical competence with incredible composure. No doubt the best example of these attributes is his fantastic finish against Barcelona in the CL: a goal that many of us will never forget.

But what let him down for many Gooners was his lack of work rate and, at times, his apparent indifference. He seldom or never looked like a team player, as he seemed more interested in scoring clever and difficult individual goals than anything else.

Somebody once wrote on a blog, after another insipid performance by the little Russian, that he wondered whether Arshavin had made a bet with one of his friends that he would back-heel the ball five times or more during the match. It made me think whether Arshavin would be capable of showing such disregard towards his profession and fellow football players, and I concluded it could indeed be the case.

Arsene did try to get Arshavin to become a full member of his team, but he clearly totally gave up on him this season.

I reckon the final damage was done during our painful defeat against the Mancs on 22nd of January – almost three years after Arshavin arrived – when he embarrassed Arsene in front of the home crowd. During this match, as many of you will remember very well, Arsene replaced the Ox with Arshavin, to the dismay of many fans. It all was epitomised with Van Judas’ ‘I have just wetted my pants’ look towards Wenger.

Ox went off and on came Arshavin, and moments later Arshavin makes a half hearted attempt to stop Valencia from bursting through to our box. This is what the BBC match report had to say about this moment: “To the dismay of the Arsenal faithful, who could sense victory, Oxlade-Chamberlain was withdrawn in favour of the rather less popular Andrey Arshavin, and the Russian did nothing to endear himself by failing to halt Valencia’s marauding run into the box, with Welbeck slamming home the loose ball nine minutes from time.”

Soon after that, Arshavin was loaned out to Zenit St. Petersburg, and after he returned to Arsenal for the new season, he simply became and remained a peripheral figure.

We cannot say Arshavin’s career is over, as he could have a couple of good years left in him, but it will not be at Arsenal, that’s a certainty. He spend his very best years of his career at Arsenal and will have nothing to show for it accept a handful of fantastic goals and one-match performances.

Arshavin offers ample proof that signing not just good, or even great, players is enough: they also need to be able to adjust to a new culture, have a winner’s mentality and an intrinsic desire to get the very best out of themselves. In short: to be able to be successful wherever they  are.

Arsene got it all wrong with Arshavin – and Reyes as well: the LW spot seems to be cursed – and it might explain to some extent why he appears to be so slow in making his mind up who he wants to join our club, especially if it involves a lot of money.

It is a real shame to see such a talented player not getting the very best out of himself, and fade away like that. I still wish Andrey all the best and hope he will find a club where he can shine occasionally and show us all once again what he can do if and when he is really up for it.

Written by: TotalArsenal.

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81 Responses to The sad demise of Arshavin is a transfer lesson for us all

  1. James Bond says:

    thanks TA, that was a splendid read re- potentially the next best paid footballer in the world if he goes to Azerbaijan 😀

    on the topic itself, he was our little magician at times, wasn’t he ? who could forget those 4 goals vs the scouse and recently that game against reading where he played through the middle and we won 7-5, what a dream combo he had with Theo that night, absolutely marvelous

    it’s a shame AW didn’t have enough trust in him to let him play through the middle esp when the likes of nasri/cesc departed, maybe he was promised that he would be played through the middle more and he wasn’t given a chance hence the motivation levels dropped ? i don’t know…he had everything to succeed in england and maybe become a legend for us helping us win trophies, a player who won us games against barca, liverpool and so on had it all but unfortunately it was not to be,

    also i feel that his heart and mind were at 2 different places, he wanted to go back to russia and no longer had the will to stay and fight hence forcing the loan move back to appears from his track record

    for me what could have been was certainly not.

  2. Admir says:

    Sad story about player that looked like made in Heaven for Arsenal. 😦 He scored a beauty at Old Toilet when we lost 2:1 thanks to Diaby’s own goal, he scored a winner at Anfield in 2:1 victory, he scored a winner in 2:1 victory over Barcelona… He showed glimpses of his potential.

    I wanted him out of Arsenal ever since I saw him smiling while we were being thrashed at Old Toilet. When Arsenal lose, I want every player to be angry at themselves, their team-mates and opponents. Smiling is forbidden! He wasn’t that bad this season, to be honest. Against QPR at home he gave some impulse to our attack. Against United he created a chance for Cazorla to score. Against Fulham he earned penalty by hitting the hand of opponents’ defender. Against Reading in that 7:5 victory he had three assists and he gave a brilliant performance against Coventry. Still, he didn’t get too many chances this season to prove he still got it.

    BTW, I would like to gave an answer to a story about generations, if I may. I believe that you’re right, TA. We need a winner as some sort of lynchpin between youngsters like Walcott, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Ramsey and Wilshere on one side and a bit older players like Mertesacker, Vermaelen, Arteta, Koscielny…that don’t have too much experience in winning trophies. Xabi Alonso, perhaps?

    And, of course:

    Glic, happy birthday! I hope you won’t mind that I couldn’t arrange you tattoo removal you were asking for. I asked the guy who does it with tattoos on intimate parts and he said that removing “Francisco Roman Alarcon Suarez” would cost you more than half of war-chest Arsene Wenger has on disposal. 😦 😀

  3. allezkev says:

    Very good read Total.

    Best way to sum up Arshavin is the word enigma…

    I don’t think it was all his fault however.

  4. Highbury Harmony says:

    Great write up TA. I think we all wanted to see AA play the hole position at one point or another/questioned why he was not played there, but ultimately that decision rested with the coaching staff. I’m sure AA’s work on the training ground/desire to improve left much to be desired and played an integral role in a lack of playing time. He is a player that has an abundance of skill but truly lacks hunger.

    Perhaps Arsene envisioned AA to play out on the wing like that of Santi in a free role, but he lacked the drive and stamina to have an effect on a match from out wide. As is typical with AW, players are forced out of position to develop versatility and an understanding of other positions on the pitch, and are only played in their preferred spots in times of necessity. Unfortunately for AA, he never looked like he cared enough to merit being played in a more influential, central position.

    However, in the small chance that AW had a personal vendetta out for AA (because of some past event) then it is just another reason in the line of many that AW should be let go. Of course, none of us are privy to what happens behind closed doors, but whatever the reason for AA’s lack of playing time was, at least he was a consummate professional and never publicly complained (still receiving his high weekly wages of course).

  5. Zealous says:

    No comment AW shld have given him his new role as No.10 behind main striker before loosing faith in him. I still like Andrey Arshavin

  6. TotalArsenal says:

    Evening JB – yes a real shame. I have never really understood why Arsene did not try him there properly. Other then his lack of stamina/ work rate, I cannot think of anything else; especially after the departures of Cesc and FFBW, it seemed to be his chance…. but it wasn’t! 😕

  7. TotalArsenal says:

    Admir, that is a very detailed account of his contributions this season: you must have a very sharp memory! 🙂

    But did you have to metion Diaby’s ‘egg-head’ own goal…..painful memory! 😦

    Yes, Alonso would tick sooooo many boxes!

  8. TotalArsenal says:

    enigma it is, Allezkev 🙂

    Zealous, yes he should have – it is what he at least deserved.

  9. TotalArsenal says:

    HH 🙂

    Hard to tell why Arshavin did not get the chance to play in the hole, and what the relationship between the Russian and our manager really was like…. Hopefully we’ll find out one day.

    Agreed on his professional behaviour off the pitch.

  10. Highbury Harmony says:

    Don’t be silly Admir, Glic could never fit “Francisco Roman Alarcon Suarez” on his micro todger even if it was in size 2 font and it was written along, across and around it. Even “Isco” is difficult to write with the aforementioned conditions I listed above hahaha!

  11. weedonald says:

    I do not read minds but I know a bit about human motivation and psychology. Arshavin was never really happy to be in London because his wife was very homesick and never really learned English. He also, as you rightly pointed out in your article, never got into working hard or practicing properly with his teammates. Wenger saw all this and also saw that playing him in the midfield attacking role meant his indifferent, up and down performances could potentially hurt more than help AFC. Once he failed to up his games despite many opportunities to do so, Wenger made his mind up and that was it for Arshavin. there is also the age factor, once he turned 30+, it spelt the end of his first team appearances….the bench was his well-earned spot this season.

  12. 17highburyterrace says:

    Very good work TA, as always…A couple of little things…

    Arshavin came to prominence with his remarkable performance at the ’08 Euros where he ran like crazy. It should be noted, however, that his fitness (and that of his teammates) was probably at a peak relative to other players given that it was the middle of the Russian season. At that tournament I was pretty sure he played at LW with Yuri Zhirkov covering him at LB. His role was probably more like the free one Santi currently has for us, even though he too lines up on the LW…. It should be remembered that Arshavin, Zhirkov and the other Russian who shined at that tournament, Roman Pavlyuchenko, all came to London and all were disappointments. Playing through the Winter should (italics) be easy in the relatively mild weather of England, but maybe playing through the Winter (at all) is tough if you’re not used to it….Eventually the same thing will happen to some group of promising US (and MLS) players who do better than expected at a World Cup….

    So, year round playing might’ve been a factor and I don’t buy the whole out of position argument. Coincident with my post from yesterday I would argue that it gets (much) harder to maintain fitness around 28 or 29. At least that was my experience playing field sports which require lots of running. At the highest level only those dedicated to fitness (true professionals) can do it. If they can, however, the rewards are great, as experience is a priceless commodity. Andrey couldn’t (and I fear for Bond’s boing boy, Rooney)…. Our current group of older players looks to have the correct mindset going forward. Still, niggles mean time off and then trying to regain fitness, and it only gets tougher as the years accumulate…

    The best comparison for what Andrey might’ve been is Santi Cazorla. (I haven’t noted any complaints from him (or in the Goonersphere) about being played out of position….) There were times this season when I was concerned about his fitness and some matches where he seemed to give out a few minutes early. Most of the time he was able to push through it and keep moving. Santi is certainly more two footed than Andrey, but I think the Russian might be the more explosive (powerful) player. Imagine if both were playing together in full flight…. Put a blue kit on them and call them the Super-Smurfs….

    Alas, ’twas not to be. Happy birthday, though… (Glic too, of course. How did the virgin dribbling work out?…)

  13. malaysian gunner says:

    I believe he was played out of position. I don’t know. It seems he had agood spell when RVP was not in the team. So when the d returned,he had to be passed over.
    Blame Wenger.

  14. Highbury Harmony says:

    17ht, I would also add that Santi’s ball retention and control were above that of Arshavin. Both have outstanding vision and an eye for goal, but Santi is very, very effective at dispossessing the opposition (underrated aspect of his game) as well. Santi’s ability to score from distance exceeds that of AA.

    Of course, none of us are arguing that AA is a better player than Santi, I simply wanted to point those things out :D.

  15. DoubleDoubleDouble says:

    Fabregas used to work hard in that central attacking position, likewise Cazorla and Rosicky when they have played there this season. Unfortunately, the little Russian is both talented and lazy.

    Wenger can’t afford to give arguably the most important position in the team to someone who might go hiding for 80-85 minutes – there is a similar situation with Walcott, and his desire to play centrally, as he has a tendency to hide behind defenders when he wants a break, and your central man can’t be doing that (one of the reasons that Giroud, despite his limited pace and someone random trapping skills, is useful for the team is that he doesn’t go hiding in games, even if he isn’t playing well). You can ‘go missing’ out wide to a certain extent, but Arshavin took it to whole new levels of invisibility.

    It’s a shame, as Arshavin most certainly had the ability to succeed in that role.

  16. DoubleDoubleDouble says:

    *somewhat, not someone.

  17. The BearMan says:

    I am very disappointed with Arshavin it appears to me he became contented with just collecting his wages. However, Arsenal certainly had plenty of that to give away.

    Wenger, still have not mastered the art of rotating his squad, but will allow some to burn out and others to enjoy the ride.

  18. Milo says:

    Santi Cazorla is similar to Arshavin in many ways!!! BUT Santi is the better player, obviously, and seems to be the stronger person as well!!! Stronger and better are two different things, though. Just because Santi is and will be more successful than Andrey, doesn’t make Arshavin a “bad” person, although one who openly supports Putin, in my humble estimation is and forever will be morally bankrupt. Good riddance, I say!

    I think Santi has put his head down, and will work much harder than Andrey ever would have. He seems to be a much brighter person as well.

    Andrey had moments of brilliance, but most of the time, you wondered what he was doing out there on the pitch. You never get that feeling with Santi.

    I really do think Wenger has learned a valuable lesson regarding the purchase of Andrey, and has now looked more deeply in to the character and moral fibre of his players, and potential purchases. Even the character of someone like Cesc, would go right down the tubes for me, if he were to sign with a Premier League rival, for example. It’s tenuous enough as it is regarding my opinion of Cesc, and that for me would ruin it all. I truly believe Wenger has systematically ridden the squad of questionable characters, for the most part, and yes, we have lost some GREAT players, in my estimation, but sometimes a bad apple can become too dangerous. A squad full of “yes Mam’s” and “yes Sir’s” is not healthy either, but I’d rather that, then have a squad full of rats.

  19. the main reason he had no chance to play the number 10 role is because 4 8 years Wenger hasn,t had 1 playing 451

  20. The BearMan says:

    It is a PITY the reserves system is no longer an option for our benched player. The only way to make these benched players work for their 50+k per week.

    Cart them off to bad pitches, you will see how fast they make improvements.

  21. VCC says:

    Bear man – I agree with you about Arshavin. It’s a shame we don’t have a reserve team that types like him could be made to play and not just sit around and draw their money. Your dead right, he soon would have upped his game if he had to play on dodgy pitches around the country.

  22. TotalArsenal says:

    Morning all 🙂

  23. Gooner4eva49 says:

    Excellent read thanks for bringing that to us.

    Such a shame, I was mesmerised by AA when he first arrived. I remember his goal against Blackburn at home, not sure if it was his home debut, but that goal was awesome and so was he.

    I remember fans moaning cos we never started him in the fa cup semi with chelski and the north London derby where eboue got sent off.

    It’s known his prefered position is in the middle behind the striker, but a good player will play and play well where he is needed. Arsene is a competent manager it goes without saying he knew his abilities and believed he could succeed on the left. Nasri done it which his preference is in d middle and our very own santi can do it! Does it very well. Podolski is doing a fine job, I know he isn’t of the similar mould but his attributes succeed in a less preferred position.

    Arsene likes players to have and give more to their game which benefits the team and compliments every other team member. Arshavin still could play through the middle in games, starting out on the left by cutting inside and drifting but seem to obviously not like the other duties that came with it.

  24. TotalArsenal says:


    Hard to know whether he was not feeling happy in London. I guess he came over to London to make it big, not just in football, but also in the media – a bit like a Russian David Beckham. But it all did not work out for him. If he had had to drive of Ramsey or Giroud, what a player he would have become…

  25. TotalArsenal says:

    Gooner4e 🙂

    That is a very fair assessment but what a waste of talent AND money, hey?! 😦

  26. Gooner4eva49 says:

    I remember when Russia didn’t qualify for the World Cup he wanted to retire! I’m most certain from international level but I’m pretty sure also at club level. Arsene convinced hin to keep goingand had some heart to heart and I believe a lot of the problems stemmed from that moment.

    Maybe he had issues in his personal life that affected him massively. A really sensitive guy.

  27. TotalArsenal says:

    17 🙂

    Good points about fitness at late twenties and that attitude becomes even more important then. Also agreed on Arshavin’s explosiveness. Technically, in terms of shooting from distance at least, he is our best player.

    Santi has incredible stamina and fitness: over the last six years or so he averaged 40+ games per season. In every way Santi has been the better signing compared to Arshavin, and I hope we only see Santi-types arriving from now on.

  28. Gooner4eva49 says:

    Yes. You can say it is a waste but that is unfair for some reasons.

    Logically if ur paying out so much money for a unused player or a player not up to expectations yes it is a waste to not bring somebody else in who can do the job for the same amount or even less amount of money.

    But for many other reasons it is not a waste of money. Sentiment, patience, belief, experience and other things as such. But the hardcore ‘I just want arsenal to win whatever it takes cutthroat die hards’ would have your head for anything but the logical conclusion/actions.

    I get it and do understand but I can’t help thinking of the other side of things

  29. TotalArsenal says:


    Good point. I reckon he never got used to the UK and probably did not speak the language well enough to communicate with other players and coaching staff really well…

  30. TotalArsenal says:

    From a business point of view it is a waste. And the value of seventy season tickets went to his wages every week.

  31. TotalArsenal says:

    Malaysian G 😕

    The post is not about Chamakh…

  32. Glic says:

    Morning BK Fudge Packers 😆

    Thanks Totes for a post about a player who gave me lot of satisfaction when at his best, which wasn`t enough for my/our liking and basically for the last year has played a bit part as a stunt double for Girouds cock !.
    It brings up one of my pet hates and that’s professional sportsmen who are anything other than professional in their fitness !. They have the best sports science available and all they have to give is hard work, pay me over £50k per week and I will run my bollox off !. To watch him struggling to run back and be over taken by Vic`s and his zimmerframe in the crowd took the biscuit for me !.
    Shows what a bargain Santi is !.

  33. TotalArsenal says:

    Morning Glicose! 🙂

    Good points my friend: there is no excuse for not staying super-fit. Not sure about the Giroud’s cock bit though hahaha 😛

  34. TotalArsenal says:


    I don’t think a comparison with Theo is fair at all.

    Bearman, VCC

    Funnily enough I saw Arshavin in the reserves against Norwich last year, just before he left for Zenit, and he really worked his socks off and played a blinder in that game. 😕

  35. Gooner4eva49 says:

    Very funny Glic 🙂

    I would say even a grand a week I would bust my arse off. Fuck it even do it for nothing because it would be an honour playing for the arsenal or just involved!

    Free season ticket too!

    Bastards! They should all be playing for nothing just for the privilege!


    Morning all

    Nice post TA. The one thing that has amazed me when i watched Arshavin was his confidence levels, he had none.

    I recall a few months back a debate we had about how players get affected by the crowd and the Russian certainly to some extent did. Add to that to Wenger no longer started him and the obvious fact that despite the coaches telling him that he could play wide he obviously thought different, his performances stank

    Why was a guy, who captained his country, was a star name, and was on big bucks, so short of confidence??

  37. henrychan says:

    hi all..
    TA.. you are really getting funnier..
    your comment to MalaysianG is totally funny.. hehehehe..

    Since Wenger put Cazorla in LW position.. I knew that no more place for Arshavin in Arsenal.. What really make me sad is that we don’t get any money from him out.. hahahaha..

    But come on bro.. don’t say a LW is a cursed.. I don’t want Cazorla to leave us.. hahhaha..
    Not for 3 season to come..
    If that would mean Gervinho.. although I also sad, but I still could be happy if Wenger find a great replacement..

    So who will you suggest for our next LW..??
    And if we must bring either Belhanda or Cabella.. who will you pick..??

  38. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi Terry,

    Except for the bucks all the things that confirmed his status have disappeared and he may have suffered from disproportionately?! 😕

  39. TotalArsenal says:

    The curse of the LW is real, Henry. Since the marvellous Pires has left we had Reyes, Arshavin and Gervinho struggling to make it theirs. The Pod does not really want it and Cazorla is an LW on paper with licence to move all over the pitch.

    I am happy with the Gerv/Pod/Cazorla options on the left wing though, and don’t feel we need anybody new next season.

    We could do with a right winger though, especially if and when Theo plays in the middle more and more. We could do with an older fox in there with CL winning experience… Arjen R perhaps? I liked what I saw of Cabella as well, or maybe it is time for the Gnarb?!

    What are your thoughts HenryC?

  40. Glic says:

    Of course G4eva49 is spot on !. 😀

    Blinding day in the Kingdom of Lesbania, took the pup for a 3 mile walk and only come across two cars !. The hedges are looking gorgeous with all the flowers going wild….primroses, violets, cow parsley, campion, bluebells, meadowsweet, greater stitchwort etc`. Right, out to plant some new shrubs with the help from a couple of my Lesbanians !.

    A picture of a typical Lesbanian Hedge before trimming ! hahaha

  41. Gooner4eva49 says:

    I like lesbians. Trimmed bushes is a delight.

    Rosicky was supposedly brought in to replace the beloved Bobby Pires. I think santi suits it to a T. It’s a hybrid position! Just like Theo’s. a complex system if u really go in to it but a tantalising one.

  42. henrychan says:

    So we better buy a AW and change him into LW.. hehehe..

    No.. don’t play Theo in the middle.. better Giroud and Podolski..
    They will be better.. believe it.. and maybe we don’t even need to bring another CF.. hahahaha.. with Yaya Sanogo as backup.. I think it will be great already..
    So we need to bring another AM to be transform to a LW.. hehehe..

    Cabella.. I love him.. but somehow I prefer Belhanda..
    Belhanda also can defend.. he might be a DM that you need.. hehehe..
    I like a complete Midfielder who can be AM and also DM..
    And the fact that Belhanda score more than Cabella..
    The important thing that Belhanda want to go.. and he will love to join his soul-mate Giroud.. hahahaha..

    So.. TW will soon start.. hope Wenger bring a great GK, RB, AM-DM,
    3 will be enough.. no need to spend all 70 million.. and promote 5 youngster..

  43. Glic says:

    I like the look of this Barca Babe we`re supposed to be interested in !.

  44. TotalArsenal says:


    Your 11.27 comment is the comment of the week. With command over the English language like that, you should really write a post for us!! Your last paragraph would be a beautiful introduction… 🙂

  45. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi Henry

    I predict that we will buy a strong and technically/tactically excellent nr10 this summer and combine him (more and more) with Theo up-front.

    Belhanda would be nice but not much more than that. I thought Cabella was Montpellier’s best attacker when we played them.

  46. Highbury Harmony says:

    Glic, Deulofeu is slated to be the next player to take over for Messi/play with him. At best we’d get him on loan or we’ll buy him and he’ll just go back to Barca.

    There’s no point!

  47. AFC says:

    TA, top post on a player that divides opinions and beliefs of Arsenal fans.

    Now I think Arshavin does not even want to play for us anymore. He does not feel part of Arsenal and that partly may be down Wenger. How can you expect a 32 year old who is not the quickest and has never had a high defensive or offensive workrate to play on the wing. It does not make sense especially as that is not his preferred position. Arshavin is really an AM or CF (SS). He has played on the left wing for Arsenal because he was forced to. You could argue the same for when he played for Russia on the LW.

    I do not agree with the argument that Arshavin just does not care about anyone but himself. The thing with Arshavin is that he just does not care about Arsenal and does not feel he should give it his all. That is probably down to Wenger pissing him off behind closed doors. He certainly cares about Russia and at one point was carrying the whole team. He even was part of Russia’s campaign to host the World Cup (or Euro’s) not sure.

  48. Highbury Harmony says:

    If we’re looking at anyone on Barca outside of Cesc, it should be Tello. The signing of Neymar more or less permanently displaces him out of the line-up and he has a 7-9 mil release clause.

  49. Highbury Harmony says:

    Happy to see there was no substance to the “Cesc to Manure” rumours and that it was all tabloid/media speculation yet again. Cesc’s staying at Barca like I said all along. Funny how things have now switched from “Cesc warming up to Manure move” to “Cesc yearning for an eventually return to the Gunners”.

    Damn Media.

  50. Glic says:

    Deulofeu or Tello ?…..this is a hard one ! ( hehehe )…now if I can find a coin I will toss……..f**k it, I cant find a coin……I`ll just toss anyway !. hahaha

  51. 17highburyterrace says:

    ‘Morning boys….Glad to see that Glic is sniffing the bushes (and pulling on twigs…) rather than pushing them up, having survived another B-day… We’ve got great weather here, too…

    Back on topic, sort of…The tragedy of Arshavin is that he was our biggest (ever) buy and, until recently, our highest earning player. The deal got pushed to the end of the January Window in ’09 and there was a sense we needed him (or something…) to catch Aston Villa for the CL spot. In the end, Villa did themselves in and we floated back into position. The 4 goal match at Anfield later in the Spring was spectacular but mostly had the effect of putting the lid on Liverpool’s title aspirations and handing another one to United…

    So, in the end, Arsh was a desperation signing that turned into a luxury (signing) that turned into a bust. It’s simplistic to argue that Wenger has been loathe to dip into the market in a big way ever since. Of course he’s had to buy in order to remake the squad these past two summers (plus Nacho in January) but the policy seems one of spreading risk over several purchases rather than going “all in” akin to the Arshavin buy. As such, this is the sort of activity I’d continue to expect going forward, rather than any change in policy towards “world class,” etc. etc. Arsene seems unlikely to want to be fooled more than once…

    Still, I’m surprised that we haven’t concluded (or heard word of being close on) the Jovetic deal. It’s possible that getting up for 4th has actually made Wenger more confident of his bargaining position and made it easier to avoid paying over the odds. After all, with the success of the run-in, nobody is screaming for his head!! (For the moment, at least….) The reality of being our (new) record signing and taking a salary right at the top of the scale and then having to lead us upwards and onwards (rather than just back into the CL places) may be more of challenge than Jovetic wants to engage or that Arsene thinks he can bear….

    Who knows, it’s just idle speculation (on my part) but I think the Arshavin effect has something to do with our current approach to business. Is it possible that it (plus our good finish) will actually inhibit (or at least take the desperate edge) off our TW activities?….

  52. Gooner4eva49 says:

    Thx TA.

    I envisage a photo board with my pic and comment underneath. Like a employee of the month. I would be looking for some medal of some sort but the mental vision of the photo board is enough. If there was such a thing you hold in bergkampesque HQ I’m pretty sure Glic will be there every week.

    Thank you for the complement I’m still getting the gist of dis English language. Not bad for a British citizen.

    You be more than welcome to use that paragraph as an introduction for another one of your fine posts!


  53. TotalArsenal says:

    Afternoon guys 🙂

    Fine weather here this afternoon – Henry in the local river, sun reflecting on water, birds singing and Jovetic flying over in the big bird to put pen to paper…. 😆

    One can but dream!

  54. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi 17 🙂

    How is the coffee this morning?

    You wrote:

    ‘So, in the end, Arsh was a desperation signing that turned into a luxury (signing) that turned into a bust. It’s simplistic to argue that Wenger has been loathe to dip into the market in a big way ever since. ‘

    You might be right, but it should remind us all how easy it is to get it wrong and waste ten of millions of pounds with one wrong decision.

    I have read that Arsene is well-known for dithering over player purchases anyway, and the Arshavin (and Reyes) mistakes must weigh on his mind when he has to say yes or no to a purchase.

  55. James Bond says:

    not keen on Tello, liverpool should buy him if they sell suarez but we already have the ox, gnabry knocking on the door.

    i hope we spend that 9 million on getting a decent goalie instead and spend the rest on DM and a proven potent threat up front.

    most comments in this article are of top notch quality, if i didn’t know any better i would have thought all of you are coaches and managers of sorts, some good solid analysis as well, well done to everyone

    re- Arshavin being sensitive and being effected too much by the crowd – lacking confidence even though he was the captain of russia and a superstar e.t.c e.t.c well it’s human nature isn’t it, no matter how great of a player you are, you will need the crowd behind you to spur you on…much like gervinho ….at times our fans are very impatient and quick to react instead of supporting a player going through a tough run which perhaps leads to making or breaking of a player psychologically.

    some players react well to the negative crowds and use it as a tool to motivate themselves i.e. theo walcott last year and some players completely drop their shoulders, i wonder if arshavin and gervinho fall under the same bracket.

  56. TotalArsenal says:


    You cannot call yourself a man in full until you have written a post for BK!!! 😛

  57. TotalArsenal says:

    good point Jambo – Arshavin and Gervinho both come from a different culture with little command of the language as well, and might have been struggling to become part of the core of the team too. As supporters we don’t often take that into account enough.

  58. henrychan says:

    TA.. Yes he did..
    But We can’t just rated from a single game.. can we..?? hehe..
    I watch the video in youtube when he played again us.. He was too easy to fall.. like the most of Barca players.. haha.. and I hate that kind of football.. hehehe..

    Glic.. almost forget to say Happy Belated Birthday brother.. wish you all the best..
    I like your post and share about our youngster..

    HH.. I think Barca will keep Telo.. and sell Villa and Sancez.. more valuable and reasonable.. hehe..

  59. Glic says:

    Thank you 007 !. Obviously the coach / manager reference was to me !.
    I am indeed the coach / manager of the Lesbanian National Team and seeing as I don’t trust any of you pervy bastardildos with my Lezzers, I am also the team Doctor ( naturally ), Physio, ( Arshavin, you fat f**king slouch, If you want to see someone move quickly, then watch me when one of my girls gets kicked in the groin area, have you ever seen the magic sponge applied using the teeth ! ), bikini line waxer, sports bra adjuster, shower turner oner and anything else you muvver f**ckers can think of !. hahaha

    Sorry, off for a while, the lezzers are naked and I`m about to stand erect for the Lesbanian National Anthum ( it`s played every hour on the hour ) …..God save our gracious Glic….long may we suck his……….

  60. James Bond says:

    ahahahahhahahahaha oh my days ahahahahhahahahahahahahaahahahah

    pardon me everyone but that is hilarious ahahahahahhaahahahha

  61. Glic says:

    I`m out soon to this pub, so catch you laterz. 🙂

  62. Gerry says:

    I just wrote a lovely load of tosh on AA, and then deleted it. The player has left hasn’t he?

    I had a feeling that to day was the 1st of June, so my prediction of a signing will be delayed until tomorrow.

  63. James Bond says:

    have fun, Glic and try to stay out of trouble 😉

    right so that’s me very optimistic considering i just put on 50 quid on Cesc joining us this season 😉

    time will tell if my hunch was onto something 😉

  64. TotalArsenal says:

    Good luck Jambo! 🙂

    Sorry to hear that Gerry and fingers crossed for tomorrow. 🙂

    Glic – you are a nutbum! 🙂

  65. Highbury Harmony says:

    JB, long-term I don’t see Ox as a winger, where as Tello is one. Tello only makes sense if we aren’t signing a ST and plan on rotating Poldi, OG and Theo there. He’s a natural winger who can play on either flank, has pace to burn, can score goals from distance, at full speed, has great dribbling and good crossing ability.

    It all depends on what happens with the rest of our transfers, but AW has been “rumoured” to be chasing Tello for quite some time.

  66. Highbury Harmony says:

    17ht, we’re not getting Jovetic unless it’s all a massive smokescreen. The player, agent and club have all maintained that he is not keen on leaving Serie A and would prefer to stay closer to home.

  67. James Bond says:


    that’s the problem right there, LONG – TERM

    i’ll settle for the next 12-24 months and some silverware , the little boy inside me craves glory , ha ha

    is there anyone out there that AW has not been “Rumoured ” to be chasing i ask ? 😀 but i agree Tello is a telling prospect and one to keep an eye on for the future…i just don’t see him coming to the emirates with the likes of poldi/gerv/ox/walcott/gnabry at our disposal….if we sold gervinho then it becomes rather interesting and an investment worth making 😉

    if there was one player out of the lot and one mentioned directly by Wenger over the years with a strong interest then that’s Benzema, what are your thoughts on him ?would you fancy seeing him at the emirates ?

  68. James Bond says:

    cheers, TA

    i hope it happens this summer not cause i’ll be laughing all the way to the bank but because he’ll be perfect in the current set up with the likes of santi/jack/rosicky and arteta, oh yeah ramsey might be able to learn a few things off the old maestro as well 😉

  69. Highbury Harmony says:

    I’ve been thinking and I don’t think our team would have done any better this season with AA playing in the hole. Maybe AA would have helped us last season playing in the hole, but even then it would have likely only helped to marginally close the gap between 3rd and 1st.

    He likely would have retained some value in a sale if he had proved himself, but unfortunately he was even mediocre on loan to Zenit.

  70. Highbury Harmony says:

    JB, Benzema would be an outstanding signing for Arsenal. He’s a player who truly needs the confidence of his coach to know he’s the out and out striker, opposed to the constant rotation he’s subject to at Real.

    He’s a massive talent, but not as clinical as Higuain. In every other aspect aside from finishing and being ambidextrous, he’s a better player though. However, I don’t think Real sell him just yet either and he’d be a more expensive purchase than Higuain.

    Plus, my mob and I are already inside of AW’s head when we hounded him after the CL final. Higuain will be brought to the Emirates.

  71. Highbury Harmony says:

    17ht, I was also thinking about your article yesterday and the whole idea of a generational divide. I think that divide is more apparent between fans than between our squad oddly enough.

    The older generation of Gooners are more patient and understand the process a bit better, while the younger generation seek immediate gratification in the form of silverware or at least an improvement towards it, opposed to the holding pattern we have been in. Then, there are the more open minded among the older generation who have half bought into our generation Y ways, with also one foot for the expected, typical Arsenal ways.

    From our squad’s perspective, I do not believe they are satisfied with 4th place/CL qualification, no matter how loyal they are. If the same results continue to persist without any intention of club to spend on the right quality of player in the transfer window, I think we’ll continue to see our better, older players eventually leave (Sagna, Santi, Nacho, Poldi, Theo, Koz, Verm etc.). For me, this is my biggest fear that the culture of instability will continue and that the organization will simply be viewed as a platform to move onto bigger and better things.

  72. James Bond says:


    so apparently if the rumours are to be believed then Cavani is coming to Chelsea with Torres going in the opposite direction to Benitez.

    i get the impression that Pellegrini is reluctant to work with big egos aka what he had at RM and will be buying players he can easily manage promising youngsters such as Isco e.t.c e.t.c (sorry Glic) ?

  73. Highbury Harmony says:

    JB, I’m not quite sure what Pellegrini’s plans are. One minute $hitty are linked with Cavani, the next with some other player. Hopefully, some of the speculation will end tomorrow as signings are finally announced.

    I do know that managers like to recruit their former players and Malaga are not Real in terms of bargaining power. Real are not cash strapped like Malaga and Real make it near impossible to poach their better players (they only sell when the player is spare parts, past his prime or too young without a chance of making the first-team).

  74. James Bond says:


    so 3rd party ownership strikes again….the likes of Falcao on their way to France instead of staying in spain, moving to england or germany….

    a travesty i tells you….a player of Falcao’s caliber should have taken a step up not down at the height of his powers, sadly greedy agents (and the player himself is to be blamed) , wonder if he movies again next year for ventures new and CL, if Monaco fail to deliver the goods ?

    or fast forward 12 months, Monaco the new ligue 1 champions and into the CL – Falcao the hero and the decision to make the move seems like a stroke of genius doesn’t it ?

    take the risk Wenger take the risk cough Cavani cough cough , hahah

  75. James Bond says:


  76. Glic says:

    AS Monaco……..Capacity 18,500……….Tickets from 5 Euros – 30 Euros ( 5 – 40 for top games )……Falcao £50M……Moutinho & Rodriguez £60M…….passes FFP ?…..someone explain !

  77. Glic says:

    I`ve said before…..I`m happy on the goalkeeping front, why would we waste a fee and wages that could be put to better use for Super Quality signing !. Can`t see it !. Doesn`t make sense !.

  78. Highbury Harmony says:

    Fingers crossed JB! I read the reports a day ago and didn’t want to jinx anything and it was from caughtoffside or the sun (can’t remember) so I wasn’t sure if it was legit or not.

    Cesar’s a great first signing and would immediately address our need for a veteran back-up GK who can provide competition for Ches. Best of all he has PL experience AND fits AFC’s requirement of an older player who has won something (world cup, CL and serie a I believe).

  79. Highbury Harmony says:

    Glic if 4 million is extremely wasteful on our transfer kitty or wages, then we have more to worry about than Cesar…

  80. TotalArsenal says:

    New Post – New Post! 😛

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