How would ‘Bale going to Real Madrid’ affect Arsenal?

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This week it has all been about Gareth Bale’s possible transfer to Real Madrid. Real have made a £85 million bid for Bale but have seen it rejected by Levy with various sources reporting Bale has told AVB he wants out of Tottenham. Maybe, Levy wants a player involved in the deal. Reports are saying Luca Modric could be involved in the deal but I cannot see any player(s) from Real going to Tottenham for two reasons.

Firstly, why would any top player from Real Madrid want to go to a team that is not even in the Champions League? I know it is a World Cup year but surely if you want to come to the EPL, you would try and sign for an EPL team that is in the Champions League such as Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester City and Manchester United; if failing that, you would likely go to another team in Europe that have at least qualified for the Champions League. Also, what player other than Bale would want to be involved in such a deal. It would be pretty demeaning for the player involved, as if he was just a mere accessory in the world’s biggest ever transfer.

I think Levy does not want any player involved in the deal and would just rather Real offer a bid closer to £100 million which I am pretty certain he’ll accept.

The deal looks very likely to go through and next season we will probably see Gareth Bale in a Real Madrid shirt, as Madrid normally get their man. So, if we assume that Bale will be sold for at least £85, what effect will this have on Tottenham and Arsenal.

The first scenario, and perhaps the simplest way to look at the transfer of Bale to Real Madrid:

Tottenham have already signed: Chadli from FC Twente for around £7 million, Paulinho from Corinthians for around £17 million, are close to signing Soldado from Valencia for £26 million (with personal terms being discussed between the Soldado’s agents and Tottenham representatives), have sold Caulker to Cardiff City for around £8 million and I think are also looking to sign a defender (CB or LB) of some sort.

There could be a scenario where the Spuds lose Bale a (super quality player) but reinvest the money from the sale of Bale by purchasing two top quality attacking players (whether that be two wingers or a winger and an AM) and maybe buy another defender (CB or LB). Spurs would replace the quality of Bale and would have strength in depth.

If this scenario was to become reality, how would Arsenal be affected?

Arsenal would be affected in a number of ways:

1) Our chances of winning the EPL title or at least challenging for the EPL title will decrease.

If Spurs can reinvest the money from the sale of Bale in some quality players, in addition to the likes of Chadli, Paulinho and maybe Soldado, they will no doubt be a stronger team. They would have the quality and the strength in depth required to put in a serious title challenge, and if Wenger does not make the signings needed to take us to the next level we might not be celebrating St Totteringham’s Day at the end of next season.

2) Our chances of finishing in one of the coveted CL spots next season would be significantly reduced.

A follow on from the first point really. Although the Spuds will have the resources to challenge for the EPL title, the likes of United, City and Chelsea also do. So it could come down to the wire once again next season and if Wenger does not make the right signings we could be the team finishing 5th behind Tottenham. So in addition to Spurs finishing above us (which they have not done for 18 years), we could also end up in the Europa League. From that point we could go on a downwards spiral like Liverpool.

3) Winning the other domestic competitions i.e. FA Cup & League Cup would be even harder.

Spurs have always been a good cup team winning the FA Cup 8 times and the League Cup 4 times. Spurs have always been more of a cup team than a league team as they struggle with consistency and with the right squad they will have a very good chance of getting to the latter stages of the cups (semi-finals and finals) and may well knock us out in the process. They would also be able to field strong teams in the cups as well as the league due to the addition of more quality players.

Spurs may well become title contenders, be able challenge for the FA and League cups and definitely be in the running for one of the Champions League spots, as they would now have the quality and strength in depth to sustain any success/form.

However, there is another way to look at it. The loss of Bale and Spurs getting a substantial amount of cash as a result, could actually leave Spurs in a worse off position than had Bale stayed. This is the second scenario.

With Bale gone, Tottenham would have to look to bring in one or two quality attacking players to replace the firepower of Bale, as well as maybe purchasing players in other positions. But this could prove to be very difficult for Tottenham when they actually try to do this, for a number of reasons:

1) Lack of top quality players left on the market

Most of the top quality players who Spurs would be looking to sign, to replace Bale and/or add depth to other areas of the squad that need strengthening will be unavailable. These players will either have already moved clubs, signed a new contract with their existing club (dedicating themselves to their current club) or just will not be for sale at any price.

2) No Champions League football

This is perhaps the biggest stumbling block Tottenham will hit when trying to sign top quality players. Spurs are not in the CL and therefore cannot offer the (very important) prospect of playing CL football which is vital in attracting the top quality players they would need to replace Bale. AVB would also not be able to offer ‘playing with Bale’ as an incentive either which is how they persuaded Paulinho to join them. Paulinho was given assurances that Bale would not leave Tottenham.

They would find it very hard to be able to get this caliber of player to buy into their project (qualifying for the CL and eventually challenging for and winning trophies every season) as Bale who is the biggest, most important and the key man of the project has left the club. If he did not believe in the project, why would these players.

Players can of course be persuaded to join clubs who are not in the CL, by the club paying the players huge wages. Just look at Monoco. They have signed the likes of Radamel Falcao, João Moutinho, James Rodríguez, Ricardo Carvalho, Éric Abidal and Jérémy Toulalan but the problem is Tottenham just cannot pay those sort of high wages needed to persuade top players (who may be motivated by money as well as success) to join their club.

3) Lack of time to bring in quality replacements

We all know that Spud’s chairman Daniel Levy drives a hard bargain and is one of the best around when it comes to getting the best deal possible for players who want to leave Tottenham. The problem here is that while the deal is being dragged out and Levy is waiting for an offer that is right for him to sell, the very few top quality players who are still available and the even fewer amount of players who are willing to join Tottenham, even though they cannot offer CL football is getting even smaller. This could lead to Levy having to panic buy and bring in average players as last minute replacements close to (or even on) deadline day or may even bring in no replacement(s).

4) Inflation on price of transfer targets

It will be known to the world that Daniel Levy and AVB will have millions to spend after the sale of Bale and more importantly they will be looking to spend it. Clubs who Spurs are looking to buy from will most likely inflate the prices for their players, in order to get the best deal possible, knowing that Spurs have money to spend. This could eventually lead to Levy and AVB having to give up their pursuit of trying to sign top quality players and instead paying over the odds to bring in average players or again bring in no replacement.

Points 1 and 4 (possibly in the case of Higuain) apply to us as well. Even though we can offer CL football to players, we are struggling to acquire the top quality players we need to push for the title (put a genuine title challenge in) because a lot of the top players are either unavailable, happy at the club they are currently at or would rather go to a club that is in a better position than ourselves right now. A club that is regularly challenging for titles as well as winning them. If we are finding it hard to attract top quality players even though we can offer CL football, imagine how hard Spurs will find it.

So in fact there is a very good chance that the Spuds would not be able to replace the quality of Bale for the reasons mentioned above.

If this scenario was to become reality, how would Arsenal be affected?

Well the answer to this question is very simple. Even with the additions of Chadli, Paulinho, maybe Soldado and another defender, Tottenham would find it very difficult to finish in the top four regardless of whether we make any signings or not. While they will be more solid defensively and concede less goals with the signing of Paulinho and Sandro returning from injury, the likes of Soldado and Chadli will not be able to replace the quality of Bale. Bale was Tottenham’s leading goal scorer with 21 league goals. He created a lot of these goals by himself and a fair bunch were wonder goals. So Tottenham would have to improve their overall team play i.e creating chances and breaking down the opposition, if the team (as a whole) are going to score anywhere near the amount of goals Bale scored last season. The problem is Tottenham are not blessed with goal scorers so they will struggle achieve this.

So we would almost be guaranteed 4th place again if were to make the right signings and could be genuine title contenders. With Arsene fielding more experienced teams in the domestic cups we would also stand a very good chance of winning a cup.

In conclusion I feel the sale of Bale to Real will lead to the second scenario becoming reality. The second scenario represents the reality of the modern transfer market, where they are twists and turns at every corner and if Bale goes to Real Madrid we should have nothing to worry about.

Although, Spurs have already acquired Chadli, Paulinho and are close to signing Soldado, by selling Bale to Real Madrid they will be taking one step forward and two steps back, in my opinion.

This transfer window we will be looking to add quality players to our current squad, which will compliment our current quality players i.e. Santi Cazorla, Wilshere, Walcott, Koscielny etc, meanwhile Tottenham will be looking to replace their best player and rebuild their team before the start new season which is only a few weeks away.

Good luck!

Would Bale going to Real Madrid improve our chances of winning/competing for trophies?

Which scenario (out of the two) will become reality for Tottenham if/when Bale goes to Real Madrid?

Written by: AFC

A special thanks to Aman who suggested such a post be written on Bergkampesque.

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182 Responses to How would ‘Bale going to Real Madrid’ affect Arsenal?

  1. davydavy says:

    Superb post AFC, as usual!

    I think that the Bale deal will go through, but I don’t see Spurs buying many more players except perhaps to strengthen their defence. They have already signed good players in this window. The other way I could see a player moving in would be as part of the deal with Real Madrid, in which case Coentrao might be a possibility.

    The real benefit for Spurs though would be to have all that money coming in so that they would at last begin to start financing a new stadium. White Hart Lane’s current capacity of 36000 just cannot sustain a Champions League club in the long term in England, not when competitors either have 60000 plus stadiums or super-wealthy sugar daddies.

    So I think that the effect on Arsenal will be felt not today (if Bale is sold) but in five or ten years time when Spurs would be a much more competitive club. Also in that time horizon there is the real possibility of Arsenal, Chelsea and the two Manchester clubs moving out of the Premier League and into a European super league, which will be the next level in the evolution of commercial football. The nightmare scenario would be that the Arsenal misses out on entry to such a league when it starts up at the expense of a revitalised Spurs. That would of course be totally unacceptable, so my ideal outcome is for Bale to stay at Spurs.

  2. Admir says:

    Brilliant analysis, AFC. 🙂

    Personally, I think Spuds will have a problem similar to ours after departure of Van Judas – lack of top-drawer player that can make the goal out of nothing against small teams and score against top teams. On the other hand, if they reinvest money they will get for Bale (BTW, in Bosnia our old grandmothers used to yell: “Izbaci mačku da ne pravi gareta u kući!” which could be translated as: “Throw the cat out of the house before it makes a lot of crap in it!” Word “garet” represents a cat-poo in this story which is a bit funny when we are talking about the best player of Spuds. 😀 ), they might spread goals that he scored (Soldado is a really good goal-scorer).

    Now, it’s all up to Levy and whether he is going to throw Bale out of the house before he makes a lot of Gareth. 😀

    What bugs me is the second part of the story and that one is not so funny – how it will affect us.

    Spuds have been just one point behind us for two seasons. Now, they are getting stronger with Paulinho, Soldado and, perhaps, Chadli (I can’t judge his quality) while we are even weaker than we were during our brilliant run-in due to injuries of Monreal and Vermaelen.

    I will repeat what I wrote in the same minute TA announced a new post on the previous one.

    May I say that I got a little bit sick with Google Hangout with Arsene Wenger?

    There, I said it.

    Now, let’s go to the more important things. The most important question is: what kind of method our negotiators use?

    “The Obvious One”, in which they publicly state the interest for a player after stating they have 70 million pounds war-chest and in which every move is so transparent that it makes you feel uncomfortable?

    “The Masochist One”, in which they let our rivals sign all players they want (including our own) so we can try the hardest way to the failure of grabbing silverware?

    “The Traditional One”, in which a pigeon (probably the one Colonel Black Adder shot down back in 1917) is used to deliver our bids for players?

    “The Annoying Cretin One”, in which we insult the team we are trying to make a business arrangement regarding their player (e.g. Cahill, Suarez) before withdrawal of the bid?

    “The Back To The 1998 One”, in which we try to find a new Henry or Bergkamp for less than 15 million pounds?

    “The Stubborn Idiot Trapped In The Groundhog Day One”, in which we repeat the same mistakes over and over again without learning anything?

    Cavani, Falcao, Gomez, Soldado, Jovetić, Negredo, Bony, Aubameyang, Higuain… A lot of strikers were available this summer. I understand that we couldn’t sign Falcao and Cavani but all other strikers were within our reach.

    Wanyama signed for Southampton and it seems that Napoli will beat us for Gustavo’s signature as well. Hell, even bloody Flamini is a free player now. But, no new defensive midfielder for us so far. Fellaini – who was arguably the best player in the league in the first half of the season 2012-13 – has a contract clause that makes him free for 23 million pounds. If Wenger is reluctant to meet that one, he will never spend more than he did for Arshavin in 2008.

    I’m sorry for all this negativity but today is 1st August, our first game will kick-off in 16 days and we haven’t signed anyone except injury prone youngster who is yet to make first appearance for Arsenal since he wasn’t with the team in Asia.

  3. Glic says:

    Credit to you AFC, you put a lot of work into that post, but there was a lot talk about the filthy scumbags from the swamplands for my liking !. hahaha

    I think the scumbags will be stronger either way, whether Bale stays or goes !. We will definitely (imo) be behind them if we don’t get some SQ in !.
    What`s the time ?………lets have another loo k !. hahahaha

    http://havearsenalspentanymoneyyet.com/

  4. AB says:

    Good question AFC. I think the answer is somewhere between the 2 scenarios you have set out here. I think Spurs are already buying with Bale income/replacements in mind, and will step up if/when the sale is confirmed – they will probably be completing the line ups now to avoid the inflated asking prices you refer to. So I do think Bale’s sale, for the sums being quoted, would enable Spuds to start the year with a stronger squad than at present. But it won’t be straightforward for them. They still need to find the goals – and new strikers don’t always settle straight away. And the squad will have to settle with many new players, and a fair degree of uncertainty over what the best 11 looks like. They may well start the season with some inconsistent performances.

    We on the other hand have no excuse to be anything other than on song – even if we have bought no-one. But we can expect our lack of depth in squad to be exposed as the season goes on, whilst the Spuds would expect their strongest team to start to form.

    In short, same old same old – a close run thing to the end of the season and the fight for 4th spot. Lets hope we buy a couple of class players to make that crucial difference.

  5. AFC says:

    Davydavy, thanks for your thoughts. 🙂

    It Bale goes he MUST be replaced if they are going to stand any chance of finishing in top four.

    Very good point about Spurs having funds from the Bale sale but think of it like this. If Spurs keep Bale they could make more than £100 million through the marketing of Bale (shirt sales, sponsorship deals etc). While they would get money to improve their stadium that would not worry me. With FFP coming in Spurs would have an increased revenue to spend on quality players but I feel those players would opt to go abroad to places like France, Russia etc.

  6. Dylan says:

    Fantastic AFC! 🙂 But I must say, either way I’m worried. If Bale stays, they’ll be good, if he’s goes they’ll most likely reinvest and be good. I feel that we need to just ignore the situation with Tottenham and focus on making signings of our own. If Bale signs for RM Tottenham could pull a Napoli and reinvest hugely. If Suarez went to BM Liverpool could pull a Napoli. Imagine both happening. Arsenal need to spend now before we’re competing against so many other teams. I know they don’t have CL football but they can pull the rebuilding card. However, I’m confident that signings will be made after our CL qualifiers when we can say 100% we have CL. I think that may have been a stumbling point in deals for Higuain, Jovetic, etc. 🙂

  7. Admir says:

    One more thing: I think Spuds already spent a lot of money they will get for Bale on Soldado and Paulinho, in a way like we did last year when we signed Cazorla, Giroud and Podolski only to sell Van Judas and Song.

  8. AFC says:

    Admir, thanks for your comments. I see your point about Soldado but can you imagine Soldado scoring goals in the same manner Bale did. Just look at the goal which Bale scored in the last game the season. A blinder which his teammates had no part in. For me Soldado needs good service to flourish and he will not get it from the other attacking players in Spurs squad.

    The case of RVP was a bit different. He had huge amounts of service from the likes of Song and Walcott (with Walcott doing his part in scoring goals as well). When RVP left we signed three players (all of which you could argue were goal scorers) as well as Theo who stepped up. Who will step up for Spurs? Lennon does not score many, Adebayor is done, Defoe does not play enough.

  9. AFC says:

    Glic, you are right. I tried to write a post that would evenly analyse the situation of both Arsenal and Tottenham if Bale was to leave in the hope that some Spuds fans might come onto BK and we can tell them that they will never finish above us. Arsene will just not let it happen. I am counting on him to bring in some quality signings.

  10. Dylan says:

    I’d also like to welcome our two new posters from last post. 🙂 Hope you stick around for a while. 🙂

  11. Akano Abiola Anthony says:

    Kudos to the writer

  12. AFC says:

    AB, thanks for your thoughts. 🙂

    A period of transition is what Spurs would be entering. New players coming in, a new system will have to be put in place by AVB and whose to say Chadli will not be a flop. Soldado wil be a solid signing for them but I just cannot see him scoring 20 plus goals. A lot of the goals Bale scored really should not had been goals. He had no right to score some of the goals he did.

    Our squad on the other hand will not be entering a transitional period. Arsene will know what players work well in our current system, what players work well together while AVB would be experimenting with various players and combos until he finds his best team. I feel if we add 1-2 players we will finish above them once again.

  13. alexgunners says:

    AFC,
    Great post. A lot of variables and its kind of scary for us either way. If he stays, they will be stronger with their additions and if he goes the spuds will spend money and strengthen the team. Seems as if they are not afraid to “spend some f&$@ing money”

    Lets wait and see what happens for us but my optimism has quickly turned to pessimism.

  14. AFC says:

    Dytan , thanks for your thoughts. 🙂

    I would not be so sure about Spurs reinvesting any money gained from the sale of Bale. Levy has never really replaced the likes of Berbatov, Modric and Van der Vaart.

    We really do need to make signings and if Wenger and the board do not really have ambition and our happy for us to compete for 3rd/4th place the spending of our bitter neighbours might just give them the kick up the backside they need to sign players as they might worry we migh miss out on the 4th place trophy.

  15. AFC says:

    Alex, Bale staying would be worse for our chances of competing. I just cannot see Levy being able to replace Bale and replace Bale well as easily as that. They may well be forced to invest in average players.

    When it comes to our signings we must keep the hope as there is still time. Wenger surely has a plan. Whether is works is another story. I would start to worry by the end of next week if we have signed no one.

  16. arsenal-steve says:

    I think there is no doubt that with Soldado arriving at the Spuds, it will improve there team no end. He is a quality striker. Although Bale is a super player his assist ratio is not good at all. Their addition of Paulinho alongside Sandro will give them a kind of Viera/Gilberto Silva midfield. If Wenger does not wake up they will definitely finish above us. Why? Because in reality we have a really thin squad. Whilst our best team is a match for anyone, over the course of a season our team will be diluted. We could easily be out the Championship race by Christmas. This being the case Wenger will leave in disgrace. If though, as I hope, we buy three ‘gooduns’. then having a strong team over the season could bring us the ‘holy grail’ of football. Is Wenger so “off piste”, that he cannot see what will happen if he doesn’t strengthen the team and squad?

  17. AFC says:

    arsenal-steve, thanks for your thoughts. 🙂

    Here is a few points regarding the Tottenham squad.

    Soldado is a quality ST but he will need time to settle into Tottenham and the EPL. Who does AVB base he team around now Bale is gone? It will surly have to be Soldado. Basing the team around a new player can be very hard as we have seen with Giroud. The entire system will have to be changed by AVB.

    Sandro is coming back from injury so how long will it take him to get back to near 100% fitness and good form. The partnership between Paulinho and Sandro may need time to develop.

    Wenger will make the right signings but we just need to be patient. Spurs have not finished above us for 18 years and they will finish above us next season.

  18. AFC says:

    * they will not finish above us next season.

  19. Nizam says:

    I don’t know but I know having proven quality players in the team is better than having wc promising kids.Ramsey,Walcott are just two names who have not justified the time.
    it hasn’t worked the last 6 to 7 seven years and why shd it work now especially with Wenger continually being associated with every kid on planet football and seemingly reluctance to pay for the quality guys.
    As said many times if he can’t get the gunners going,he isn’t worth the contract extension. We don’t want a scenario where the gunners can challenge only to falter in early spring.

  20. AFC says:

    Nizam, Ramsey was an ok player but we should probably bring in a DM to take his place in the starting eleven. He is a good squad player to have.

    Walcott is a quality player. He scored 14 goals in the EPL last season and has also got plus 10 assists if I am correct. Walcott is a quality player who is underrated and unappreciated by Arsenal fans. If he was not in our squad we would not have made the top four in the last two seasons.

    We will bring in the necessary players needed to challenge for trophies.

  21. Japha says:

    This is why we would not progress.. Setting our sights on Tottenham who are below us is surely a disaster for recipe that has and would keep crippling us until it changes. if you aim at nothing(which should be the manchester clubs).. You will hit nothing. Aim at making sure Spurs then Usurp us.. then its 4th/5th next season. The fans are starting to be the cause of the problem. Do not attend the emirates cup or the new season.. Simple as that. That is the only way the message gets to the board undiluted. Bidding X amount of money for Y value of a player does not cut it for me. Get the sale doe period. No excuses! When they start to show ambition then I would return with my loyalty and start attending the games again

  22. AFC says:

    I would also add developing the likes of Koscielny, Walcott, Gibbs has been worth it. We now have a group of quality young players who in years to come will make up the majority of the squad.

    Wenger is thinking of long term success and the future of AFC. Szez, Gibbs, Jenks, Wilshere, Ramsey, Ox and Walcott will all be available for years to comes. Wenger also must replace the huge number of youth players released which is why we are being linked to players who are very young.

    Wenger is starting to think about short term success which has been shown by the likes of Santi, Podolski, Giroud, Arteta, Mertesacker etc, all being signed. AW will continue to add quality experienced players to compliment our very promising young group of players.

  23. COYS says:

    Lloris, Vertonghen, Kaboul, Sandro, Paulinho, Dembele, Soldado. If Bale leaves Madrid will have to include a player in the deal and a very good one at that. We have other deals in the works and you can be assured that if Levy has decided Bale is going then Baldini will be moving fast to put deals in place. And that man moves fast. We have plenty of quality with or without Bale and if he leaves it is far from the end of the world. By the way Chaldi is quality genuine quality he will be a household name soon enough. Best of luck for the coming season gooners 🙂

    COYS

  24. Bale says:

    I know for sure the major effect will be on Wenger, for his failure to sign me some years back. This is not for footballing reasons, but financial. If he had known I would cost as much quid today, he would have signed me then. He was not even good enough in the aspect of money-making on players he knows how to do best, ie buying players in the cheap and selling them big. He’s not even winning trophies for his club, spanning 8 years now. Wonder if next season won’t be continuation of same scenario, as no serious big player signing has been announced. Well, Mr. football economist, I am off to Madrid! See you at the Champions League, hopefully….

  25. Arsenal_vcc says:

    AFC – I was equal parts depressed and optimistic upon reading your article. Thanks heavens you put the depressing part first! 🙂 I am still puzzled by all the clearing out that has taken place without replacements coming in. I feel that all the angst regarding transfer has the potential to have some negative effect on the team. Just for that, I wish he would be done with his “top top quality” signing and move on with finding his gems 🙂

  26. AFC says:

    Arsenal_vcc, Wenger must be trying to sign some top quality players. He is most likely working on several deals at the same time as well as waiting on the Suarez deal. If Wenger’s plans work out it would have been worth the very long wait.

  27. Carloz Gunnersaurus says:

    Great effort and great analysis .. But you must never be given this much thought to the spuds .. Why? .. Because they dont deserve it, and will not be making the top4 next season ..

    You guys seem to have short memories. We have seen spurs spend big every summer for the past 20 years or so .. and still seriously under-achieve. This is nothing new. Relax .. St Totterigham’s day is assured .. for ever.

  28. chris says:

    How many 2nd rate players did Chelski and Citteh have to pay over the odds for, just to get them to the point where they could attract real, top quality players? The spuds don’t/won’t have sufficient resources to build that 2nd generation team that will seriously challenge.

    Liverpool are a prime example of a team having payed too much for 2nd tier players, and being unable to follow up with signings to take them to the next level.

    By the time you factor in the increase in wages and over-inflated asking prices, Bale’s transfer will net the Spuds 2 top level signings, or more likely, 3/4 overpriced “names” to keep the peasants from revolting. As we unfortunately know all too well, 2 good players can’t replace one world class player.

  29. henrychan says:

    Morning all..
    I’m watching Chelsea vs Inter now.. hehe.
    Peter Chec were great.. that’s why We must have a solid GK also.. Cesar will be great..

    Great post AFC..
    I think they will sell Bale.. This rare opportunity (85millions) will never come twice.. hahaha..
    The bad news is.. with that money they will watching Wenger very close.. every players that Wenger want can easily cut by them..
    But I don’t think Spurs will be very strong as some of you guys think.. hehehe.. Not an easy thing to gather all the stars in one club.. Rooney was a good example.. He was MU #1 ST before RvP came.. but look now he look like nobody..

    About TW.. as most of you.. I still believe Wenger will bring some solid players.. and I still hope that will be the Brazilian.. Cesar.. Gustavo and Bernard.. hahaha..

  30. oz gunner says:

    Great post AFC, you put a lot of effort in to that cheers.

    Also welcome to the new bloggers.

    A few variables to weigh up in this. Personally if Bale goes I think they will be worse off. His speed and power are massive advantages in the premier league. He often catches players flat footed giving him enough time to make space and let rockets loose from outside the box (sometimes they go in, others fly out to Row Z). His qualities are almost perfect for the modern premier league. Only problem is he dives more than Greg Louganis.

    If the new signings adjust well to the league and quickly then we might be in trouble, however, that doesn’t always happen as we know. Lloris and Vertonghen were quality buys and have helped them immensely. Caulker being sold is a strange one though (rated him as a up and coming CB), and Gallas departing leaves them light on down back (their weakness).

    Man U didn’t let the Ronaldo departure affect them but Tottenham are a different kettle of fish because they are a one man team. If Bale stays and we don’t strengthen a great deal…may god have mercy on us all!!!!

    If we are serious about winning the league this year I’m not entirely sure why we haven’t signed anyone of note yet. Not every signing hits the ground running like Nacho so integrating them early should have been our priority. But anyway I digress.

    Well done AFC

  31. ptemgp2010 says:

    Personally I wouldn’t even care about Tottenham but focus on ourselves and other EPL teams. We shouldn’t be basing our next season on them and giving them too much spotlight. Aim for the top four teams.

  32. aman says:

    AFC, thank you very much for doing this article which by the way was brilliant so well done!! 🙂 so thank you for listening to my request.

    First of all spurs may have spent 50+ million on players but if bale does leave what player would frighten the opposition?
    Don’t get me wrong they’ve brought in some ‘good’ players but that’s what arsenal have been doing for 8 years now.
    BUT on the other hand let’s say bale stays spurs will overtake arsenal the way everything is going at the moment, if arsenal don’t get 3 good quality players then goodbye to champions league.

    I hate saying this as an arsenal fan but bale needs to stay in the premier league, it will make spurs better then last season but the up side to that is our crop of players will need to step up another gear whereas if bale goes our squad will take other clubs like the liverpools, spurs, everton, newcastle, swansea for a joke and they’ll probably get tought a lesson.

    Now forget about spurs, if they sell bale they’ll have 100m in their kitty for the next 2 years BUT arsenal have 70m reserved PLUS the budget wenger normally gets start of the season which is about 20m so altogether he’s probably got 100m to spend but we need to take into acount of the wages and I feel no player should earn stupid amount like rooney does.
    Now this brings me to the point do the arsenal fans want to see a quality player who’s going to be on double the amount of our highest paid player and effect the teams moral? Or should wenger just by good players and make them world class but at the same time don’t sell any players and get the players to prove themselves that they should be earning 6 figure wages a week?

    AFC what do you think?

    Cheers

  33. gunfest says:

    Like it was said above, I think that Spurs will be worse, it all depends who they buy.
    I just think that under Wenger we’ve lost a lot of credibility , how many top players are telling their managers “I want to go play with Arsenal” like Gareth did to his manager?!

    Given our needs we should have signed Higuain, 2 months ago …before Falcao and Cavani got purchase for outrageous sums of money!

  34. Highbury Harmony says:

    AFC, wonder post my friend that was an excellent read! What I enjoyed most was how balanced you were throughout the entire piece without displaying any of the typical bias or animosity that is typical shown to those North London scum :). Very thorough analysis and don’t take what I write in the following paragraphs as a disagreement but as an addition or further examination upon your wonderful work.

    Starting with the first issue, which is your question of Soldado settling into a new league. Sure, it can be said that any new player needs some time to settle. However, as we’ve seen from La Liga players in the past, top drawer ones never need much time to settle and those that dominate in La Liga utterly dominate the less technical EPL. Soldado has been top 7 in La Liga scoring for the past 4 years. Just take a look at Michu, Mata or Santi for recent examples of a quality La Liga scorer destroying the EPL – and none of them are even strikers!

    On paper, it is very clear imo that the Spuds have a stronger squad than us if you break down player by player comparisons individually. However, we all know that games are not won on paper and paper cannot account for chemistry, the manager or the system each club has in place. This is Arsenal’s strength and what has allowed weaker teams on paper find success in attaining CL qualification year after year. Despite having less success than the Spuds against the top clubs in recent years, there is a belief that no matter how poorly we do against the best, we can still string together enough consecutive victories against weaker competition to stay ahead of the Spuds.

    Moving on to your wonderful analysis of situation #2. I largely agree with all your points, though surely at some point the value of money comes into consideration, despite not having the allure of CL. Spuds could easily meet the 50 million asking price for Suarez, and even though they are not in the CL, they are at least guaranteed Europa league, where Liverpool are not (if I recall correctly).

    Now, is a team with Suarez, Soldado, Paulinho, Chadli, a new CB and maybe Di Maria (Real will look to offload a winger) be stronger than one with Bale, Paulinho, Soldado and Chadli? I 100% think it would be and it would spell definite danger for us. Not only would we lose one of the few SQ strikers remaining to a rival, we’d also see our scum neighbours likely leap over us in the standings too (maybe even over one of the top 3!).

    Whether Suarez to Spuds happens remains to be seen, since as you outlined there are many reasons for Suarez to block a move to Spuds. Staying in the EPL and not even playing for a CL side would look bad to those that stand by him at Liverpool and it’d look worse if Arsenal finished above Spuds, even with him in their line-up.

  35. Highbury Harmony says:

    I completely forgot about El Shaarawy. This new job is interfering with my football scouting/knowledge too much! There are still some strikers out there even if we don’t get Suarez :). But, will Milan sell? I think at the right price anyone will sell and El Shaarawy is a much better “personality”, younger and the world is at his feet in terms of potential. Kid is class, has pace, mad “skills” and pretty clinical to boot too!

    Glic and fellow BKers help me convince management to bring El Shaarawy to Arsenal. Arsene, it’s on you again ;).

  36. Frozen Gunner says:

    HH, I don’t think any of us need to worry in the slightest about Suarez joining the spurs. Knock on wood but Luis has been perfectly clear that he is seeking CHAMPIONS league football– and lets face it, tottenham just aren’t champions. But with Ayre’s latest comments, we may begin to worry further about him seriously staying in liverpool.

    Oh and is it just me or does anyone else feel that Napoli is blatantly swooping on our transfer-sloppy-seconds? Though i’m still really hoping for a Gustavo deal.

  37. Retsub says:

    Interesting well presented post, well done.

    Spurs may well bring in 4 or 5 good players, but they will have lost their impact player. How many times did Bale rescue them last season?

    Very similar situation to RVP leaving us. The new recruits did well but we need a whole lot more from Giroud and Podolski this season. If they step up to yhe mark and we strengthen the squad I am confident we will leave Spurs behind, as you mentioned their squad needs time to settle in.

    Another factor is Spurs do have an inferiority complex with Arsenal. Whenever they have looked like finishing above us they lose their bottle.

    Great blog by the way looking forward to a winning season

  38. oz gunner says:

    @ BJ

    another dodgy call mate. How much are you poms paying them? ( 🙂 )

  39. Gerry says:

    AFC – Brilliant, well written post. However, my one criticism does not concern your skills as a writer.

    No I am linking to what Retsub above has said, and in glic’s comment earlier.

    This blog reads like we will be the ones with the ‘inferiority complex’, not Spurs?

    There is one little ray of hope in it all that could be used to our advantage? Soldado has not signed yet? My understanding is that he we prefer to go to a club in the CL?

    The downside to any late hi-jacking thought is he is a different player to the sort of things that Saurez-type would bring? But that does not mean he might not go elsewhere?

    I agree with Dylan, let’s get our own house sorted, and stop worrying about our neighbours.

  40. oz gunner says:

    @ Gerry

    I agree with you last sentence. The only time they should be mentioned in a blog is in a pre-match, match report (after we’ve thumped them), and St Totts day.

    Other than that they are completely irrelevant

  41. TotalArsenal says:

    AFC, apologies for the late response. That, my friend, is a very fine piece of writing: we might have to provide you more often with essay-like titles as they clearly get the best out of you.

    For me, the essence is not the quality of the players the Spuds have, or will have, but whether AVB can get them over that psychological barrier of not faltering at the last, and crucial, hurdle. That is what Wenger has had over him and the Portuguese predecessors.

    We need to focus on us, and show a bit more respect to our current squad and Arsene’s ability to mould this squad into something very good again. However, as has been discussed to ad nauseam, we need to add a spark, or star or SQ or BOING! if you like, and some good back up players (who can replace the likes of BFG, Arteta and Giroud without much, if any, loss of quality to the first team.

    The day Arsenal finishes below Spurs is the day Arsene will leave. Like others have said, let’s focus on the nr.1 spot this season! 🙂

  42. TotalArsenal says:

    COYS – well done for making a fair and balanced comment. Not so sure about the Twente boy, though!

  43. AFC says:

    Carloz Gunnersaurus, unfortunately Tottenham had to be analysed as well as Arsenal as the Bale transfer would affect them as well as us.

    You are right I just cannot see them finishing above us. Wenger will make sure that never happens.

  44. TotalArsenal says:

    Some fantastic follow up comments by davydavy, Admir (love the cat analogy 🙂 ), AB, arsenal-steve, HH, Aman and others. Top stuff guys. Tonight, another maiden post! What a team of writers, including a strong bench, we have now at BK!

    Catch you later tonight. 🙂

  45. AFC says:

    chris, glad you could see one why the Bale transfer would be so bad for them. For me once your out of the CL places such as Liverpool it is very hard to get back into them as you simpy cannot attract top player unless you are willing to pay them massive wages.

  46. AFC says:

    Henry, I just cannot see the Spuds being as good as they were last season. Why they would have around £85 million that is not enough to simply attract quality considering a big chunk of that money will probably used to cover any debts, costs etc.

    I am just waiting to see who Arsene brings in. Hopefully by the end of next week we would have signed some quality players.

  47. AFC says:

    Oz gunner, thanks. 🙂

    Bale was a very good player but I think he will be nowhere near as good as he is at Real.

    You are right when you say it is not as simple as just buying replacements when star man leaves. The problem they will have is that most of their other attacking players are pretty average and will not be able to fill the void left by Bale. We had quality players who were able to fill when RVP left.

    We really need to get some quality in and i have put my trust in Arsene to deliver the goods.

  48. AFC says:

    Aman, glad you liked the post. 🙂

    A very good point about our transfer budget. If Spurs get £85 million they will probably only reinvest 50% of that into the squad as they have already signed Soldado ( I think) and they need to pay of debts where as Arsene has a full £100 million to spend.

    When it comes to players I think we shouyld go somewhere in the middle. I would be happy for Wenger to pay players around the 150k a week mark which would only be a 50k increase from the likes of Theo and Podolski who are on 100k a week. Transfer fees are totally different. To get that top quality forward we need to pay £40-50 million but apart form that I would pay £20-£30 million on a DM and bring in a cheap GK and a CB for a under £10 million pounds.

  49. AFC says:

    HH, always good to hear from you. 🙂

    I did try to write a completely balanced and unbaised article about the Bale situation.

    Completely agree on the point about Soldado but do Spurs have the attacking quality to create chances for him? I do not think they do.

    I would say Spurs have quite a strong team but without Bale they will be weaker in my opinion. Do the likes of Chadli, Lennon, Holtby come near Walcott, Podolski, Santi? I do not think they but the combo of Sando and Paulinho will probably be better than our DM combo.

    Spurs can pee the high transfer fee but they cannot pay the sort of wages Monoco, PSG, even us (if you look at our overall wage budget which is almost double theirs), Russian clubs etc.
    They will no doubt be waiting for one of the big four to slip up such as Chelsea did two seasons ago but fortunately Chelsea won the CL.

  50. AFC says:

    Retsub, it did take us Podolski, Santi, Giroud and Theo stepping up to vill the void left by RVP. Ramsey did a decent job replacing Song but we need to get a DM in.

    Very good point about Spurs always bottling it. They were 7 points above us but somehow Wenger done it again. 8 wins and 2 draws in the last 10 games. I am waiting for the quality to come in so we can have the believe that our team can win a trophy.

  51. AFC says:

    Gerry, do not worry, a post analysing the Spuds in such detail is a one off. 🙂

    I think Soldado will sign. We should just be focusing on ourselves but I felt I had to show the best and worse case scenarios which we could find ourselves in.

    I think Wenger is waiting on the Suarez deal. Apparently Suarez has come out and said Liverpool would do business with another club for around £35 million as long as it is not United.

  52. AFC says:

    TA, good to hear from you. 🙂

    Very good point about AVB. Will he be able to rebuild the team, get the best out of new players and find a system where the old and new players can work together. I am not so sure he can considering how well his ‘project’ went at Chelsea.

    Collectively we are very strong, stronger than the Spuds and adding quality should put them out of reach from ever finishing above us. They have never finshed above us since Wenger has been in charge and I do not expect that to change.

  53. AFC says:

    Aneke has joined Crewe on a six month loan deal.

  54. Fred says:

    Hi guys, great post. I prefer the option where Spurs can’t buy anyone or improve their team anymore. However, they have improved their squad with the signings of Soldado and Paulinho whilst I don’t know much about the other guy those two players will really improve Spurs if they can settle in. Last season it was well reported that Spurs needed a top quality striker and unfortunately I think they have that in Soldado. I have a bad feeling that unless we strengthen our squad then there will be no St Totts day this year. We badly need a “beast” in DM and a Left Winger/striker at least, and also hopefully a Right Back that can cover at CB and maybe an experienced goal keeper. Thats a lot to do in the last few weeks of the Transfer Window, but there are players that we could still realistically go for that are top quality.

    DM – Fellaini (23m)
    LW/Striker – Suarez (50m) Sanchez (20m)
    RB/CB – Richards (12m?)
    GK – Cesar (5m)

    If we saw Fellaini, Suarez, Richards and Cesar coming in that would cost around about 90m, which we don’t have so I can’t see that happening.

    But Fellaini, Sanchez, Richards and Cesar would cost 60m – well within our budget. Sachez will surely be pushed out of Barca now because of the arrival of Naymar and he has something to prove after his stint at barca, but he is still a very good player. Richards wants to make the England squad but hasn’t been given assurances by man city that he will get enough game time (and he is an arsenal fan), Cesar wants to stay as Brazils Number 1 and he won’t do that by playing in the championship. Fellaini wants to play in the champions league which we can offer him this season, not too sure about next season though if we don’t strengthen.

    Those 4 signings would insure that we are in the champions league next season and challenge for trophies. What do you guys think?

  55. AFC says:

    Fred, glad you liked the post. 🙂

    Wouldn’t this be funny. Spurs do not sale Bale and he then has a crap season. His price drops to £40 million, we buy him, Wenger gets the best out of him and we win trophies and make millions.

    I do not know if you heard this but reports are saying we could be getting Malaga RB Gamez (who is a defensive RB who does not really attack) in a swap deal with Bendtner. However we are only willing to pay something like 1.8 million Euros while Malaga say he is worth around 5.0 million Euros. That would give us cover in defence with Sagna moving to CB when needed.

    I feel we need 4-5 players. We need a GK, DF (RB or CB), DM , ST and AM/no.10 or a RW. Santi can stay on the LW.

    This is my list:

    GK- Cesar or Adler
    RB or CB- Gamez, Richards, Abate, Rami, Caceres or Williams
    DM- Khedira or Gustavo
    ST-Suarez
    Any other quality AM/no.10 Wenger can bring in.

  56. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Thanks for the post AFC

    The sale of Bale would provide Totnumb with a massive financial boost. With the building of a new stadium to consider i think some deal deal will be reached, Totnumb want that money.

    How will it affect us? not a lot. It might not even effect us at all. I wont go into the repurcusions it could have on the transfer merry go round this summer, that leads to madness.

    1) A sudden influx of money is great, but if it is a one off then buying new players will have to be adjusted to next years revenue in terms of sustainable wage bills and costs. This is how business are run, The key is the wage bill over the long term, not purchasing Soldado. Totnumb currently do not have a large enough turnover to compete with Arsenal.

    2) The stadium project is hugh. Try going to a lender, asking for money and present them accounts showing an unsustainable business model or losses. You wont get a penny. Totnumb are already in negotiations with lenders. If you get the loan, “Covenants” are attached by the lender. for large amounts of money this can be very serious business, e.g. Arsenal were forced to keep a certain amount of money in the bank etc..

    3) Reinvestment into a new stadium will virtuley guarantee Levy and Lewis a nice return on completion. in other words, just like our directors, they can sell for a much higher price. Do Levy and Lewis know this? I bet your last penny they do.

    To conclude then, if you believe this will effect Arsenal in the medium to to long term, which happens to be the important thing, (not whether they hijack a deal this summer, big bloody deal), then you are misguided.

  57. AFC says:

    But I would be happy with Cesar, Gamez, Khedira or Gustavo and Suarez.

  58. Fred says:

    AFC, would be great if Bale did a Sol and came to us for free, would love that more. If we can get rid of Bendtner and get a RB that seems like a good deal to me. But I think Richards would be better, mainly because I know more about him, but also he is a vert good CB as well as a RB so when Jenkinson is ready to be a regular starting XI player in a couple of years, when TV and Sagna are past it Richards can move to CB and Jenkinson can take his place at RB. Then on the bench we have two very good veterans who could help us with squad rotation or step up to the plate when it comes to injuries.

    With the striker situation I think that can be resolved by moving Podolski to be the main striker. Also (hopefully) Giroud will improve after his first season. I think we need a tricky left winger to help unlock the oppositions defences.

    My ideal line up for next season would be:
    …………………………………………Sczney/Cesar/Adler
    Richards………………..Mertesacker…………….Kosh……………….Gibbs
    ……………………………………………….Fellaini
    ……………………………….Wilshere…………………Santi
    Theo…………………………………………………………………………Sanchez
    ………………………………………………..Podolski

    Then we would also have a top quality bench as well with the likes of Arteta, Ramsey, Giroud, the ox, Sagna and Vermaelen all ready to prove themselves. I personally think that the squad I have listed above would definately finish in the top four if not challenge for the EPL and would all come in within the 70m budget.

    I like Suarez as a player but as a person I detest him. Having said that he would improve our squad, but at 50m I think he is too much. There are other positions that need to be improved with top quality players like the ones we have mentioned, and bearing in mind we have 70m spending 50m on one player would mean we wouldn’t have enough to get top quality players in other positions.

  59. Dylan says:

    HH, I’ve mentioned El Sharaawy before. Unfortunately, Milan said he would cost around €45 mil or something (if I remember correctly) and recently said they rejected a €30+ mil bid and El Sharaawy said he wanted to stay. After his second half of the season duo in form, I’m not sure he’s consistent enough to warrant a €40-50 mil bid. Although he obviously has huge potential. Who knows? 😉

  60. AFC says:

    TMHT, thanks for your thoughts. 🙂

    All very good points. That is the problem they face. This money will be a one off as you say but our increased transfer kitty could be made avaliable on many occasions if needed.

    Tottenham do need the money for all the reasons you mentioned. They just do not have the financial capacity to challenge the top clubs. That is shown by their overall wage budget being around half of ours. We do have the money to compete with the best but we have mainly not used it or it is currently being used to pay the wages of our deadwood.

    We struggled when we built our stadium so over the next few years they will find it hardly to even finish in the 5th spot.

    I would also add they are not a global brand. Arsenal and Manchester United are while Chelsea and Manchester City have the money to stay on par with us. Liverpool are also a global brand but they are done in my opinion.

  61. AFC says:

    Fred, I would rather have a dedicated DM like Gustavo or Khedira instead of Fellaini.
    If we do not get Suarez I would turn Walcott and Podolski to STs and then invest in two quality wingers. I would then play 4-1-3-2 formation. Our new DM holding with any three of Santi, Wilshere, Ramsey, Rosicky, Ox or our new wingers/AM.

  62. AFC says:

    Or here is another idea, play a tight 4-2-3-1. Have one of Podolski, Walcott or Giroud leading the line. Behind in the ‘3’ I would have Santi and two attacking players whether that be two wingers or one AM and one winger I do not mind. In the ‘2’ I would then choose two of Ramsey, Arteta, Wilshere and our new DM.

  63. Fred says:

    AFC, I see what you are saying about Fellaini, but he has stressed that he prefers to play as a DM, his versatility would come in use when we have the standard 2 games a season when Diaby is fit, as we could potentially play them both and be less predictable in terms of our set up. Having said that I would be very happy if we got one of Fellaini, Gustavo or Khedira. Would we be able to afford Suarez, Gustavo/Khedira, Gamez and Cesar/Adler?

    I’m not too sure about the transfer fee for Gustavo/Khedira but if Cesar and Gamez cost us 5m each and Suarez costs us 50m then that leaves us if 10m left to spend if we have 70m. Do you think we could realistically get either of them for less than 10m?

  64. Fred says:

    AFC, I like your thinking. I have a feeling that Wenger will stick with the double pivot (which I personally think Wilshere should be a part of!) then Cazorla down the middle and a tricky left footed winger would do the job nicely for me.

  65. AFC says:

    Fred, we could get Cesar for around £1.5-3.0 million. Gamez would cost around £3 million pounds (remember Malagas price is in Euros and Wenger is likely to get a good deal), Gustavo would cost around £15-30 million while Khedira would cost around £25 million and I am sure we could get Suarez for £45 million.

    The Cesar and Gamez deals would basically not cut into out budget as the transfer fee from the sale of our deadwood and wages saved would cover their signings. So £45 million and let’s say £25 million together is £70 million which is within our budget of £70-100 million.

  66. AFC says:

    If Wenger is sticking with the double DM pivot then 4-2-2-2 or 4-2-3-1 is the way forward. If we do not get Suarez then we should play 4-2-2-2. Giroud clearly needs the support of another ST which Podolski and Walcott would give him. A combo of Giroud & Walcott or Giroud & Podolski would work very well.

    Then buy a world class AM for around £30 million. Have him and Santi play behind the two STs with Rosicky and the Ox as back up.

    Two of Wilshere, Ramsey, Arteta and the new DM behind them.

  67. AFC says:

    Playing a 4-2-2-2 formation would mean that our full backs would primarily have to provide the width but the Ox can come on to provide width if needed where we could revert to either a 4-2-3-1 or 4-4-2 with two holding midfielders.

  68. AFC says:

    Sorry, Gustavo would cost around £20-25 million.

  69. Fred says:

    AFC, we actually haven’t recieved much money from our “deadwood” we got 1m for manone, arshavin, squillaci and Denilson left for free and djourou is out on loan. We have freed up space on the wage bill, probably about 70k a week I’m guessing. Bearing in mind that djourou, denilson and arshavin were already of the wage bill when they went out on loan last season. That does not cover the wages of one of the players we have listed. So either way the wage bill will be increasing.

  70. AFC says:

    What is up with me today, sorry Fred.

    Gustavo would cost £15-20 million.

  71. AFC says:

    I think we got a few mill from Santos.

  72. Fred says:

    Great, if Gustavo could come in at that price I would snap him up, as he’s proven in the champions league. Then maybe go for a left Winger, as I think Wenger will stick with the 4-2-3-1 formation and will keep Giroud up front and maybe play Podolski there. However, he may revert to the 4-2-2-2 formation that bought us a fair bit of success under him previously.

    …………………………………..Szczesny
    Richards………………..BFG……………..Kos…………gibbs
    …………………………Gustavo……Wilshere
    Walcott…………………………Santi………………Sanchez
    …………………………………….Podolski

    or
    ………………………….Szczesny
    Richards…………BFG…………..Kos………Gibbs
    …………………….Gustavo………Wilshere
    Santi………………………………………………….Sanchez
    ……………………….Walcott
    ………………………………………..Giroud

    The cost of that team would probably be roughly 50m max. If we do have up to 100m to spend then bring in Suarez as well job done and the EPL is ours along with possibly the champions league. However, I highly doubt that will happen, and I have a hunch that Wenger is going to play Vermaelen at DM and not bring in anyone in that position, this is purely because he has said that he wants him to remain as the club captain, and I can’t see the offical club captain staying on the bench for the whole season.

  73. AFC says:

    I did not know Santos left for free. Thanks for pointing that out me.

    Chelsea are bound get one of Gustavo or Khedira which would leave us to pick up the other one. Both would be good options.

  74. Fred says:

    AFC to be honest I totally forgot about Santos I had to check he was still with us and then to my relief the arsenal website said he wasn’t. All we need to do now is to get Wenger to come on this website and he can have a look at top quality players that we could realistically get. After all last season he didn’t know berbatov was available on a free transfer when the rest of the world did, so he could do with a few pointers from the fans.

  75. James Bond says:

    nice one, AFC, you’re back with a bang and have redeemed yourself.

    i hope spuds finish 2nd this season, which means we’ll be champions once ; )

    wicked laughter time ahahahahaha

    on a more serious note, Spuds could get Messi and still not finish above us.

    😀

  76. James Bond says:

    Ozzie Ozzie,

    mate, the law has been followed to the dot but i do agree, some of the decisions have been rather shocking but there was one that went in your favour as well though with Steve Smith, a very similar one but this time the umpire gave it not out and that’s how it stood since there was no visible evidence..least the decisions are consistent…

    we don’t do what you lot have been doing over the years and decades down under ahahahahah nor do we intimidate or bully the umpires like you lot used to 😀

    cracking game of cricket this one i reckon , Pup has done well but what was Warner thinking – surely he knew and Clarke should have known better as well.

  77. AFC says:

    Fred, it would be good to get Wenger on BK.

    Do you really believe Wenger did not know Berbatov was avaliable?

    Course he did. He just did not want him. He did not see him as a long term solution to our ST, was too old, wages probably too high etc.

  78. AFC says:

    JB, I saw aman’s request and thought iit would make the basis for a very good post. Within 1-2 hours it was written. 🙂

    Everything always goes wrong for Tottenham. 🙂 how many more years they can choke and fail to finish above us.

  79. James Bond says:

    wow, all that done in a couple of hours ? makes it even more impressive !

    not to be critical but perhaps a suggestion for the future, it would have been nice if you had analysed some stats (his goals, assists, corners e.t.c ) and who would be able to make those numbers up in the absence of Bale ?

    i would say it would take least 2 players to make the numbers up after Bale departs, everyone’s guess is as good as mine

    however , let’s not forget that Bale is that 1-4 player for Spuds, they will definitely find it hard and don’t be surprised to see them struggle till xmas time hoovering somewhere in the top 10.

    the way i see it, Spuds can bring 5-6 players (they have got 3 already, isn’t it) so a further couple and they would still be trying to fill the void Bale has left,

    compare that to us ? we still only need 2 quality players to take the step up and be serious title contenders (Suarez/Fellaini or any decent DM) 3 would be a bonus.

    sounds simple doesn’t it ? course it does, but we’re the mighty arsenal and we tend to make easy and simple looking things the most difficult 😀 we like doing things the hard way !

  80. James Bond says:

    Ian Wright – you sir, are an absolute hypocrite and a confused person

    what is the purpose of making such statements ? it’s beyond me.

    has this guy lost the plot or what ? year after year, he has been screaming for quality signings and for AW to spend the cash

    i’m just baffled .

  81. Admir says:

    @AFC, I agree regarding Bale’s ability to score goals that his other team-mates couldn’t score in this life-time and that Soldado will need a decent service in order not to repeat Rebrov. Still, I wouldn’t write off players like Dembele and let’s not forget last year Adebayor didn’t go on pre-season with Spuds because his wallet is never full enough. Actually, I think Spuds will have more problems with their defense on the flanks and even in the center (William “The Bad, The Good and The Ugly” Gallas left as well as Caulker). It might turn out that Paulinho and Sandro will be their most important defenders.

    Yes, Van Judas had a decent service – Walcott, Arteta, even Gervinho had his share of assists for Van Judas’ goals – and overall quality of our replacements Cazorla, Podolski and Giroud is higher than quality of Spuds. I just must add that Van Judas also assisted to his team-mates – he had his greedy fingers in 44 goals (we scored 74 – almost 60 percent of our goals).

  82. AFC says:

    JB, analysing Bale in detail using stats would have made the post a Spurs post. It was already borderline Spurs. If I had done that I think I would have been banned from BK. 😀

  83. James Bond says:

    so if L’FOOL get their man Costa,

    they will have :

    Aspas, Borini, Sturridge, Suarez & Costa….

    is anyone else thinking, what i’m thinking ?

    yep,

    Costa – IN

    Suarez – OUT.

  84. James Bond says:

    good point 😀 but my point was to touch upon it that they would need 2 or possibly 3 players to fill the void and make such numbers up, meaning that they would be playing catch up to last season 😉

    but i see why you didn’t do it , makes sense.

  85. AFC says:

    Thanks for the info, Admir. 🙂

    JB, reports are saying Suarez will be a Real Madrid or Bayern player next week. Forget Ian. Suarez is kicking up a fuss. He said Liverpool told him they would do business for £35 million with a CL club as long as it is not United. We must be patient.

  86. AFC says:

    JB, fully agreed. You could argue that it took Santi, Podolski, Giroud and the improvement of Walcott to replace RVP. So it took 3.5 players to fill the void left by RVP. I think Spurs will need a goal scorer midfielder and a creator to replace Bale.

    Levy, Fabregas and Nasri are not for sale, so it seems you will have to go elsewhere. 😀

  87. James Bond says:

    will both RM and BM want to go for a player as controversial as Suarez ?

    just ask yourself that and the answer lies there.

    will RM and BM be interested in Suarez in a couple of years time, when he has helped Arsenal win things and in the process redeemed and repaired his image ? – i think so.

    for now, i doubt if they will want to go for a player with such baggage, they don’t need him as such (ok, you could argue that BM could do with him but hey, would you really want a player your brother manages and if things go wrong in training then it risks the relationship in the triangle ) ?

  88. Highbury Harmony says:

    Newcastle agree Gomis fee…everyone is concluding their striker signings but us!

  89. AFC says:

    JB, all good points and fully agreed.

    Real are in for Bale and for good reason. They will make all the money back like they did with Ronaldo over a period of 2-3 years. If Real get Bale I think they get 50% of his image rights. Shirt sales, sponsorship deals etc, and Real make back the money they payed for Bale with a profit.

  90. AFC says:

    Real likes players who they can market and Suarez does not fit the bill.

  91. AFC says:

    HH, Wenger is waiting on the Suarez deal and we must be patient. I can see why he is waiting on the Suarez deal. There are no other STs out there worth buying.

  92. James Bond says:

    FOOTBALL
    Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger on the Gunners signing players before the transfer deadline: “We are working very hard to strengthen our squad.

    “I am confident. You look at many teams around us. Nothing has happened until now. This team with financial potential as well.

    “At the moment the market hasn’t moved a lot. Apart from Man City, nobody has done anything.”

    ahahahahhahahahahaha, what is AW bloody on, i’ll have what he’s having

    someone wake him up from whatever world he’s living in.

    cheers.

  93. AFC says:

    http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/news/arsenal-boss-arsene-wenger-confirms-2117568

    Vermaelen out for a further 6 weeks. We need to a sign aother defender.

    Vermaelen will also remain captain.

  94. Highbury Harmony says:

    “HH, Wenger is waiting on the Suarez deal and we must be patient. I can see why he is waiting on the Suarez deal. There are no other STs out there worth buying.”

    Surely you mean, “HH, Wenger is NOW waiting on the Suarez deal and we must be patient. He’s waited so long and done nothing that there are now almost no other STs out there worth buying.”

    AW missed the boat on a ton of strikers and the list dwindling down to what it is, can only be a fault of his own/management’s.

  95. AFC says:

    HH, agreed there.

  96. James Bond says:

    can someone please tell AW that after 17 years of competing in Europe , he should know that we’re suppose to be building and bettering a team not just for domestic cups, competitions but also for EUROPE ?

    most teams if, not every single top team or decent team has improved and added to their squad and teams.

    what is he on, seriously ? he’s a brilliant manager – no doubt but some of the things he says are border line stupid.

  97. Highbury Harmony says:

    Hahaha JB, perhaps it is his way of “acting stupid” to the media again to divert their attention away from the signings he has in the works? I mean Berbatov being available was common knowledge…

  98. AFC says:

    JB, a lot of the things he says publically have to be said. He has to publically defend his squad but it is what he does out of the public eye (signing players) is what he does not do.

    AW has a degree in economoic but cannot understand the modern transfer market. How can you want a player but terll the team how much you are going to pay for him. That is like us walking into a shop and telling the shop keeper how much we will pay for his stuff. I can see where he is coming from. He does not want to pay over the odds for a player who is not worth it but you eventually have to. Imagine it like this. You go into a shop and a loaf of bread is £1.50, you used to get it for £1 years may years ago so to you it is not worth it. You might leave it in the hope the price goes back down but after returning to the shop after a period of time the price has still not gone down so you just accept that the price will not go down and pay the £1.50 for the loaf of bread.

  99. AFC says:

    Can someone tell me how Ian Wright thinks we need:

    A goalkeeper, two centre-halves, two full-backs – for both left-back and right-back positions – another midfielder and two strikers.

  100. 17highburyterrace says:

    Inneresting stuff and well written, AFC. Put me, however, into the group of folks who don’t particularly want to talk about what Spurs are doing. I guess, because we’re doing nothing, we need something (anything…) to talk about. Tomorrow, at least, we get to see Higuain in action 🙄 😈 …

    Similar to our situation over the past few years, Spurs must opt for being a selling club. It’s really the only way forward when you have a team with just one (or two) really dominant player(s). Like Terry suggests, the Bale money could (italics) be a way for Spurs to get going on their stadium issues, but they must back it up with improved results. The N. London Derby is one of the great ones and it harkens back to an earlier period (well documented here by some of the oldsters). This tradition is very appealing to the “new” global audience and this might be Spurs chance to market themselves to this group. With Arsenal sooooo weak these days, Spurs could spring into the upper echelon of English Brands, but they need to get into the top 4 (at our expense) and do so playing some good football. Given that we’re barely hanging on to our CL position, playing eye-gouging stuff in doing so, AND torturing our fans with our transfer business, we are primed for a fall. If we get Suarez (and the attendant repulsiveness he represents) we’re really banking on results as the only tool for making ourselves “attractive.”

    So, exciting (but also very depressing) times. We MUST get off to a good start to the season and we MUST win the first leg of our CL qualifier (in a big way) so that we can rotate players for the 2nd leg which is in the midweek before we host the NLD on 1 September. If we can win that match (and be qualified for the CL group stage) maybe the pressure eases for the next day–the transfer deadline. If things go wrong, they could go REALLY wrong…

    Through inaction this summer (on top of big talk about “money to spend”) management has created a boiler-like cauldron of pressure. We’ll see if the team can stand up to it…

    Like I say, exciting times…. 😦

  101. Delano says:

    @Japha i think your statement has made my day and it is simply the best solution to the Board. The biggest voice the fans can have before the season kicks off is boycotting the Emirates cup.It is plain stupid to keep 70 million pounds just for selfish egoistic of interests of being a Holder of a Masters Degree in Economics.Wenger has surely become a nuisance and an insult to the fans.Missing out on Higuain for a few pounds is just unexplainable.Its difficult to see Suarez comming to Emirates either as Liverpool are determined not to sell to us. I just hope he runs down his contract and joins PSG but i can’t see that happen as he seems to have alot of Shares and affiliations to the club. His agement Fergie has retired but he seems not to get tired.

  102. Highbury Harmony says:

    http://www1.skysports.com/football/news/11670/8851297/arsene-wenger-still-hoping-to-sign-liverpool-striker-luis-suarez

    And there’s the confirmation we are still in on Suarez. My guess is the widespread public interest is for AW to get Suarez’s attention and hope that he requests for a transfer, thus lowering the 50 million valuation.

    Make no mistake, there will be nothing amicable between the two clubs if Suarez is ultimately sold to us.

  103. 17highburyterrace says:

    HH (and others)…My take on the Suarez transfer is that it’s very similar to the situation with RvP last season. Best player on the team issues ultimatum (4th of July statement or biting an opponent and taking a big ban…) and puts the team in a horrible spot. Sell out to a superior team in your own league and take the money for rebuilding down the road. Like we “should” have taken less money and sold to Juve, ‘Pool should have sold to Madrid (or elsewhere) for less…

    Our position is “relatively” strong and we can hold out for the deadline, given that Suarez cannot play for anybody (as he serves his suspension). Of course, things get weaker for us if we lose (or even draw) any of those early season matches (Villa, Fulham across town, Spurs) or fail to qualify for the CL group…

  104. oz gunner says:

    jesus AFC and Fred on fire 🙂 More hypotheticals than you can poke a stick at.

    Wright is an idiot.

    @ HH

    France…I mean Newcastle needed to grab a striker after letting Ba go without a replacement. You are right though we need one quick smart.

  105. AFC says:

    17ht, fully understand. 🙂 I guess one of the main messages you culd get from my post is we have nothing to worry about even if Spurs do get £85 million plus.

    You also make very good points on Suarez. The problem is he is our last resort for ST. If we do not get him who else is really available. If we do not get him (going back to my discussion with Fred) we could have to invest in a goal scoring AM and winger and play a 4-4-2 or 4-2-2-2 formation and pair Walcott or Podolski with Giroud to give him the much needed support he needs.

  106. Highbury Harmony says:

    Agreed 17ht. You don’t just bid 20 million for Diego Costa to play alongside Suarez when you went into the TW with relatively limited funds as it was. Clearly, he’s a replacement for Suarez and I’m hoping they are trying to get that deal done before ultimately selling Suarez to us (similar to the RVJ situation from last season 🙂 ).

  107. Highbury Harmony says:

    #Suarzenal

    Can we make this a thing?

  108. AFC says:

    Leave Spurs to it.

  109. 17highburyterrace says:

    HH, I saw Diego Costa play down in Granada and I was distinctly unimpressed. He’s got a bit of size but seemed slow of action and thought–a poor man’s Giroud, maybe (lol)…

    It will be interesting to see how all these Spanish CFs fare in England. Personally, I think there’s a reason that Spain has gone with a 4-6-0 on their national team. Torres and Villa are both quality but have suffered with injuries and may never be the same. Negredo (City), Soldado (Spurs) and Costa (‘Pool, maybe) have never caught the eye of Del Bosque, despite the (gaping) hole for such a player in the squad.

    On the other hand, players like Silva, Santi, Navas and Nacho have all looked pretty good in their rare moments when they’ve gotten to fill in for the likes of the Barca boys (Xavi, Iniesta, Pedro and Jordi Alba). Mata, I thought, was pretty shocking in that Confed Cup…

    Thoughts?

  110. 17highburyterrace says:

    “Suarzenal” Finally, this team has some “bite” to it… 😆

  111. Highbury Harmony says:

    17ht, in the case of Negredo and Soldado, it could be the classic case of players performing better for club than country. In the Spain set-up, strikers are not geared towards being the “focal points” of attack and I reckon players like Negredo and Soldado need that type of assurance/set-up in order to thrive.

    While leading their lines at their respective clubs, both players have been absolutely phenomenal. Scoring 25 and 24 goals respectively in La Liga is no easy feat and clearly a sign of their class. Both have been pretty consistent in the top 7 of scoring in the past 4 years, so it comes as no surprise that both were sold for relatively high prices.

    In terms of Diego Costa, I think he has potential and is a versatile attacker. I’m shocked that you found him slow though. He’s a very direct player that loves getting under the skin of the opposition and tries to bull right through them, opposed to using flair to get around them. He has good pace and technique, as most Brazilians do.

  112. AFC says:

    17ht, Mata did play poor in the Confederations Cup.

    Regarding Spain and their ST situation. It is clear that the manager has no problem with playing a ST as long as he is mobile. This has been shown by Bosque opting to play Torres and Villa up front. By mobile I mean a no.9 who just does not restrict himself to the 18-25 yard box but is willing to go out wide when needed, take up various positions in the final third and drag the oppositions players out of positon. But as you have said Torres and Villa have come back from injuries. Villa as he has got older has lost his pace (which you would expect him to), still has his finishing ability but can no longer do all the running around. Torres is basically the Spanish Gervinho. He has been poor for both club and country ever since he moved to Chelsea. His poor form has now become permanent. He will mask it for goals against weak opposition. If you looked at him in the Confeds Cup against Taihiti he scored four goals (which you would expect him to do in such a brilliant team as Spain, Bendter would have scored had he been in that game) however his passes, linked up play with Villa was poor. Villa could havd 4, 5 goals had the service from Torres been better. So it would not be wise to play Torres against top opposition.

    Meanwhile, Soldado and Negrado are also not mobile enough and are classic number 9s. I think the Spain manager wants to play with no particular focal point (fluid formation) which makes all four of those players redundant. He would rather opt for a false 9 such as Cesc who can fit into the free flowing football he wants to play.

  113. AFC says:

    * had

    By Spanish Gervinho I just mean hugely inconsistant, chokes when given clear cut chances and penalties and just has no confidence.

  114. Highbury Harmony says:

    “Meanwhile, Soldado and Negrado are also not mobile enough and are classic number 9s.”

    Care to take that back before I personally call you out AFC?

  115. 17highburyterrace says:

    Haha, HH, maybe we’ll have to rekindle our argument about Spain vs England…

    As you will recall, my argument went something like…Given the lack of quality in Spain beyond the top two clubs, scoring lots of goals may not be such an indicator. Remember too, that those guys will not get the er, same respect, from the refs…(Do they also take pks for their teams? something which might be padding their totals…)

    As for Diego Costa, the thing about the Granada-Atletico match I saw was that it was incredibly static–nobody wanted to move until a teammate had done something good with the ball. Costa got a few chances but seemed rooted. Maybe you’re right and he will do better in England where there’s a lot more (often purposeless…) running. He’s definitely got a certain “presence” (small p) and you’re right that he may demand some attention from defenders. Still sounds like Giroud to me, as I describe what I saw… 😉

    That said, I know you’ve watched more La Liga than I have (games were on too late for me when I was there…) so I will defer…

    Re: Suarez, if ALL of our eggs are in that (particular) basket, count me as worried…

  116. AFC says:

    HH, Soldado and Negrado are STs in the mold of Higuain whereas I think Del Bosque wants a ST like Suarez in the set up.

  117. Highbury Harmony says:

    I agree AFC, however I’m confused by your claim that Soldado and Negredo are not mobile enough as STs.

  118. Highbury Harmony says:

    17ht, both players take PKs for their respective teams, however I wouldn’t say it inflates their goal totals that much. They score some brilliant goals themselves and clearly have outstanding technique and variety to their games (more so Soldado than Negredo).

    In an ideal world, we would have bought Soldado over Giroud. However, we bought Giroud at what is looking like half the cost, so I guess we can’t really complain since Giroud will likely score at least half as many goals as Soldado next year.

  119. 17highburyterrace says:

    Yeah, I think I might have to scurry to the sidelines and wait until I see more of these Spanish strikers…Where’s the popcorn eating smiley when you need it… 😀 (Negredo and Soldado seem plenty mobile to me, but WTF do I know?…)

    Regardless, it should be interesting….

  120. AFC says:

    HH, I meant that they are not mobile enough to play in Del Bosque’s system but as classic no. 9s (playing in a normal system) they very mobile but still not mobile enough if you are trying to play with no focal point in a fluid formation.

  121. Highbury Harmony says:

    17ht, both are quite mobile, with Soldado’s mobility and movement being fairly close to RVP’s imo. Neither are lightning fast but plenty mobile and tricky for opposing defenders.

  122. Highbury Harmony says:

    AFC :), perhaps you should have included that in your original comment. I agree with your last statement, though I would still say that Soldado is mobile enough to play in a fluid formation, he just needs more consistent opportunities to prove himself there.

  123. AFC says:

    HH, I would definitely play Soldado over the likes of Torres and Villa. But I think he prefers to play Cesc as a false 9.

  124. 17highburyterrace says:

    HH, discussion of Spanish CFs coming to England aside, I’ve more or less bought into the notion that Giroud represents a decent plan B for us and an outlet for the (woeful) distribution ills of our #1 keeper (Sir Chez…) The only thing that puzzles me is that we’re managed by Skinny Arsene (not Fat Sam…) so the whole Route 1 thing remains a mystery (to me).

    I’m not sure if Total is on vacation yet (hopefully he is, so he doesn’t have to read this…) but it seems mind boggling to me that we’ve sacrificed so much of the “good” football to accomplish minimum requirements (4th place) and that we’re not finding players who can get us back to a more eye-pleasing game. Koscielny has some good movement and zip on his passes as does Arteta (when not under pressure–he has a tendency to get bullied by strong, fast players…) but PM4 and Ramsey make playing it out of our own half extremely iffy. So long balls from Keeper (or from Santi if he drifts back…) are the way we play. Can we beat teams with possession and trickery as we get closer to goal? If last season’s run-in is any example, my answer would be “no.”

    As much as I think we need to keep the heart of our squad together and build on the (ground out) results of the run-in, putting that (exact same) group under soooo much pressure so early in the season, with ZERO additions or options (injuries seem WORSE than in the Spring) seems suicidal. Certainly it doesn’t bode well for a more “expansive” brand of footie…

    Ah well, 15 days til the season starts…

  125. TotalArsenal says:

    You did not watched the pre-season games, did you 17?

    Nothing is more beautiful than the fruits of EVOLUTION 😉

  126. 17highburyterrace says:

    Hey Total! I missed the matches in Japan but saw the 14 goals in SE Asia…

    Tell me more… 😀 (How do you see us navigating those matches through 1 September?…)

  127. Dylan says:

    I think I saw someone say Costa was Spanish. Isn’t he Brazilian?

  128. Highbury Harmony says:

    Ya, and nothing is more beautiful than seeing us go from playing nice football back to ugly football scraping by to hold onto narrow 1-0 leads once we realize we lack the quality to actually sustain our level of play.

  129. Highbury Harmony says:

    It doesn’t take a genius to realize that without Wenger, this team would be toiling in the mid-table.

  130. 17highburyterrace says:

    Uh oh, no response from our fearless leader… That can’t bode well, can it?…

    (And Dylan that was me talking about Costa–what I meant was CFs playing in Spain but coming to England…)

    Good stuff today from AW about transfers making a mockery of FFP and that spending for spending sake is silly. We are attempting to work amicably with Liverpool over Suarez and all Arsenal players must respect the values of the club. Sanogo vs G. Higuain tomorrow it seems….

    In Arsene we (must) trust…

    (And, in truth, I do… Sometimes, however, I worry for the man… A little breathing room would be nice–for him and the support, no?)

  131. TotalArsenal says:

    17 and HH

    You are both cut from the same cloth hahaha 🙂

    Of course beautiful winning football is the holy grail, but how many managers/clubs have been able to achieve it?

    At least Arsene tries but ultimately he will fall back to safe and secure if needed. But this time round he had a lot more time with the squad and the quality will come to the surface once again. Or are you telling me that Ox, Jack, Theo, Santi, Pod, Gibbs/Nacho, Tomas, Koz, and one or two signings are not capable of producing beauty. Also remember beauty needs steady to support it. 😉

  132. 17highburyterrace says:

    Back on topic…(thinking about Spurs…) my thought is that if they could get Modric back (+Soldado) they might have something. The two Brazilians as a double pivot is intriguing…(though I do think they need strengthening at the back)…

    Like HH suggests, I’m less worried about other teams (below us) and more concerned with Arsene and the immense pressure he’s putting himself under. He’s correct that he must spend the money wisely and our results must improve…(And to that extent, the type of football we play is relatively meaningless…I like TA, that you left out SZ, Per, Zorro and Ramsey from your list, exact guys I singled out as problematic–Cheers!…) The PR with the support is really poor so it’s put up or shut up time. My big fear is that everything could turn very, very (very) quickly, hence my concern about these matches leading up to the transfer deadline. The results, plus a little good news about players coming in, seem crucial…Otherwise, I cannot see the majority of the support feeling OK about taking a very thin squad through another long season. How can we make a real run at any cups when we’re releasing or loaning so many players?

    Maybe we’ll see some youngsters tomorrow/Sunday looking good and suggesting some greater depth to the squad…(Aneke is already out on loan, right? Who else is going?…)

  133. Glic says:

    Evening BK Arsenal Bandits 😆

    ” It doesn`t take a genius to realize that without Wenger, this team would be toiling in the mid-table ”

    I agree, but I would also say…..It doesn`t take a genius to realize that with Wenger`s current inactivity in the wallet department, this team will be toiling around 4th, 5th or 6th this coming season !.

  134. Highbury Harmony says:

    17ht, the only thing I can imagine being worse than losing 8-2 before the window closes is playing well until the deadline, nothing happening and then going on a long losing streak once the TW is over…

  135. 17highburyterrace says:

    Anybody know anything about EmCup TV here in the States? In years past it’s been on ESPN (with Ray Hudson and his American straight-man Phil)…I don’t see anything on my preview listings 😦

    Glic, how goes the tattoo removal…If we get Suarez are you gonna go for the toothmarks?… 😀

  136. 17highburyterrace says:

    HH, we “should” do better but a bad result vs Totts on the eve of the deadline would be a killer. We will be on 3 days rest (2nd leg CL qualifier), while they have the whole week to prepare…

    Surely we’ll be doing something before the TW is over…. 😆

  137. Glic says:

    Hahaha 17ht There`s so many already on it, I wouldn`t know who`s who !.

  138. Glic says:

    So let me get this right, the way I`m reading it, is that we will not get Suarez until we at least actually qualify for the CL proper !. Is that how you Bandits see it ?.

  139. Dylan says:

    17HT, I’m not sure about the tv thing.
    As for the topic of Spurs, I’d rather not discuss how they can strengthen. I’d rather focus on us, and Wenger should do the same.

  140. Gerry says:

    Evening chaps, I watched the BM v Man C game last night – now my BTSport has finally kicked off(Very impressed with the HD coverage, and only a small BTSport logo on the bottom right hand side, leaving the whole screen clear for the footie) – and I have to say, Negredo looked very sharp, and made for the EPL – fantasy players, alter your frontline players, he will score lots of goals! – Jovetic was on when BM restricted Man C to very little possession, but did have one little mazy run and shot(wide).

    I disagree somewhat with the view that Saurez is the only show in town, much as that is the way it may appear right now.

    Liverpool going after Costa may just be an attempt to get us to bite(no pun link intended) and remove one Saurez option?
    RM, as has been said, will not be an option.

    Gustavo or the BD guy would be good for our DM, and BD would most likely replace with Ginter?

    Much as I like Micah Richards, at a reasonable price for someone with an injury record, I would rather he be the CB cover, than the RB replacement. Don’t think we will get him though.

    Ericksen is supposedly a ‘Pool target, which might just rattle their cage a little, if we did bid, and at around £15m with nobody else interested, add a few if it becomes an auction, I think he would add to the squad.

    Well that is my evening thoughts, back later.

  141. Glic says:

    Diego Costa lot of money, no thanks !.

    I too have BT sport free and shall watch both Emirates Cup games on my sons 50 inch plasma ( mines only a tiddly 42 incher ! ). Cant wait to see the new signings !. hahahaha

  142. 17highburyterrace says:

    Inneresting Gerry…I gotta figure out the telly stuff before the season kicks off, not to mention my fantasy squad…On that note, Dylan, keep me posted. I’m willing to pay (if I must–last year I paid the extra $10/month for the 2nd Fox channel…) It appears that I also need to pay for Be-in TV if I want to see the Spanish footy…Finally, it seems the EmCup matches are on ESPN-Deportes which I could get if I went for the full-on Spanish Language package. As it is, I get enough of the telenovelas on Univision (for free)… 😀

    Glic, you never know but I think we should be fine in the CL qualifiers, it’s more the early league matches (on less rest than our opponents) which have me worried. I think there’s incentive for us to push Liverpool all the way to the deadline on any Suarez deal–who cares if he serves his suspension as their player or as ours? Of course, we would need to be in the group stage for that to act as an attraction for Hannibal the Cannibal…

    The bottom line: If Arsenal lose (or draw) ANY of those first matches AND continue not spending all that money we have to spend the atmosphere at the NLD on 1 September will be incredible…though not necessarily in a good way…

  143. TotalArsenal says:

    17 🙂

    The most beautiful fountain – and you and I have seen some very fine ones in Granada during our separate visits – still need a basin, pump and filter to do all the glittery and sparkling stuff. BFG, Ramsey, Giroud are our basin, pump and filter. 🙂

  144. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi Dylan, are you up for a match report for tomorrow’s game? 🙂

  145. TotalArsenal says:

    I cannot see it happening, AFC. Ronaldo at Monaco or Paris Saint Germs seems more likely.

  146. AFC says:

    TA, I just cannot see it happening either. Surely, Real would want at least £100 million for him.

  147. TotalArsenal says:

    AFC, Wenger is right – it is becoming a mad world. Can you imagine what you can buy with £100m?

  148. 17highburyterrace says:

    Maybe there are some extras on a C-Ron deal and this is how the big clubs deal with FFP (Monaco must have additional connections…)

    Who the freak knows? Arsenal, however, are operating at a lower tier, that’s for sure…discussions of fountain plumbing nothwithstanding… 😀

  149. AFC says:

    TA, when it comes to certain players I will have to look at it another way.

    Using Bale as an example, you could argue he is worth £85 million. Not because of his ability as a footballer but for who is he. If Real get Bale they will get 50% of his image rights. They can then use him in various marketing schemes where they can make a profit from him through shirt sales, sponsorship sales. Bale could become a global brand like Ronaldo and Messi and within 2-3 years Real would have made back their £85 million with a profit. You could argue that spending that amount on a player is worth it. Think of it like a sort of investment.

  150. AFC says:

    I am surprised Wenger has not brought in players (obviously on a lower scale) who can be marketed and a profit can be made. Rooney is one those players and if Wenger was to spend £30-35 million on Rooney we would make that money back with a profit and get a quality player.

  151. James Bond says:

    now we’re talking, hell yeah

    Luis Suarez to consider transfer request in Liverpool dispute :

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/23550760

  152. 17highburyterrace says:

    AFC, I don’t get what you’re saying. Why would Wayne Rooney be good for marketing? He’s ugly as hell, morally questionable (the FA had to pay people off to keep his second round of prostitute use out of the press until after WC 2010) and a move to any other English club would have to be seen as an admission of his “failure” at United (England’s “biggest” club). Why isn’t our own pretty boy, squeaky-clean Theo Walcott as big a marketing icon? Is racism still so strong there in England or is it just that he’s not a good enough footballer?

    (And, yes, I am yanking your chain on this one, eh 😀 …though I think there is truth in what I’m saying…)

    By the same token why is Gareth Bale so great for marketing? How many RM fans (which would be at least half of all Spanish Speaking football fans, worldwide…) are interested in El Chico Mono (the monkey-boy)? I can see how a new marquee player sells another round of shirts (and ads…) but Bale over continuing with C-Ron seems misguided.

    What am I missing?…

  153. 17highburyterrace says:

    Also, in England, aren’t most contracts structured so that players retain their own marketing rights? Does this have to do with differences in contract law in the various countries? Again, I really don’t know what I’m talking about but, if true, it might make the whole marketing business moot, no?

  154. James Bond says:

    JM time i reckon, ha

  155. AFC says:

    17ht, Rooney is not perfect but he was United’s star player before United singed RVP. He is supposed to be the face of English football, with Wilshere the future face of English football. He is England’s best player which makes him very marketable.

    Bale has the potential to be a global player. Many people from around the world watch the EPL and Bale was one of the stars of last season. They will be alerted by him and Bale could attract a huge following. He could become a household name like Beckham even though Beckham was not a brilliant player. Bale would not really interest Spanish fans but he would certainly interest the Welsh and fans from countries where football is being developed e.g. Asia and the Middle East.

  156. 17highburyterrace says:

    Like I said, AFC, just yanking your chain…. (No mention of Theo, however, I notice…)

    I want Rooney no closer to Arsenal than Stamford Bridge. I do believe he might have a little more to give (esp. if Mourinho gives him top billing over there) but I think his best days are behind him. Since Theo is our guy I hope he can take over with the England set-up (as well as doing better for us)…

    Bale-Beckham comparisons?….My wife says no….(Actually, “Hahahaha—NO!”)

  157. James Bond says:

    also worth noting that Bale has also won the Player of the year award in England much like C.Ronaldo.

    and of course, also another similarity happens to be their diving and acting like divas when not touched.

    do you see where i am going with this ?

    😉

  158. AFC says:

    17ht, JM will have to explain how the contracts in countries work.

    I think you do have a point about the whole racism thing in England. People who do not live in England can be ‘fooled’ by the idea that racism does not exist in English football. Good to see you are not being fooled. To outsiders it can seem that racism has been eradicated but it really has not. Racism has improved but I would not say massively. Various rules and regulations have been put in place which means that people cannot be openly racist. But behind closed doors I still fell racism is still a big issue. Looking at those in power at the top, in the FA, there are not that many people of minority backgrounds. This is shown by the likes of Terry. Chelsea openly came out and supported him making all of their players sign statements saying he is innocent and you could argue that the FA supported him as well. They had to give him the ban to keep up appearances but when it came to the national team Rio was left out instead of Terry because of the whole issue between Terry and Anton. Surely that does not sound right with Rio’s injury problems used as an excuse.

  159. James Bond says:

    good point Re- Theo , however, Theo hasn’t been the main stay or a starting 11 for Arsenal let alone England,

    be it because of his injuries, form e.t.c e.t.c

    but yep, players like Rooney, Lampard, Gerrard have been more reliable in that aspect, both for club and country…they have managed to remain fit for longer and have been selected when fit, unlike Theo

    it’s only in the last 6 months or so that Theo is getting a more consistent run ?

    but yep, Theo is a great ambassador for the sport and should be right up there if, he manages to stay fit and keep performing at the level he has been recently.

  160. 17highburyterrace says:

    For sure, AFC, I was over there long enough (living at 17 Highbury Terrace) to get a real feel for it…

    This “could” be a breakout season for Theo and if it is, it will be (very) interesting to see how the FA, English TV, etc. use him for marketing purposes going into WC2014. Note: I’m assuming that England will qualify… 😆

    Bond, you’re right, Bale diving in Spain could be quite impressive…

    BTW, do we still have Gervinho or is it time to change my avatar?…

  161. James Bond says:

    yep, AFC

    gotta feel sorry for the Ferdinand brothers and Rio in particular, he was right to shun the FA and say no to that England call up.

    he was stitched by the FA.

  162. AFC says:

    17ht, I would also add that had Terry not been such a big figure he would have been given the boot from Chelsea but because of who he is they stood by him. Me or you could racially abuse people in our place of work and not get the sack, sued etc, but because Terry is a famous footballer he gets a small fine and gets banned for a few games. For me any player who is found guilty of racist behaviour should receive a lengthy ban (maybe a ban for the rest of the season) as their are some clubs like Chelsea or Liverpool who will not do the right thing.
    If I was a manager, any player who racially abuses anyone would be sold, he could be Messi for all I care.

  163. James Bond says:

    best to change the Avatar, on his way out sooner rather than later.

    😉

    Suarezenal avatar should be considered @ 17HT

    😉

    good innovation that one @ HH – i like it !

  164. AFC says:

    JB, and then when Rio rejected England he was the big bad wolf. Why should he be used by England just because golden boy Terry retired from international football quickly before his FA hearing, knowing full well he would be found guilty of racially abusing Anton.

  165. James Bond says:

    hypocrisy running wild @ AFC

  166. AFC says:

    17ht, Gervinho could be gone by tonight.

  167. AFC says:

    * could me or you

  168. 17highburyterrace says:

    OK, so I’ll be looking for some Hannibal Lecter photos to replace my build-your-own-Gervinho…

    “Suarez”, in my house (with my kid) has become a synonym for biting…As in “stop Suarezing me” or “I’m gonna Suarez you on the nose.”

    So, AFC, does this mean that you don’t want Suarez at Arsenal? (Since you would sell anybody guilty of such an act, I would guess you wouldn’t want to buy such a player.) Regardless. if he comes, we’ll have to get Luis, Luis (“Louie-Louie?”) to stop calling people blackie (negro) even if the term doesn’t appear on Liverpool’s list of banned words…

  169. TotalArsenal says:

    Guys you are going mad about Bale. Ronaldo became a star on his own account and that leads to good marketing opportunities, but Bale will first have to get there. Ronaldo had won the CL and 3 PL titles before he went to RM. Bale was voted player of the year, which would normally have gone to the shoulder chewer; that’s all. A great talent but he has got it all to prove!

    He is NEVER worth the sort of money they are talking about, but I reckon the club is in desperate need to bring in somebody to make the fans forget they missed out on Neymar, and perhaps the departure of Ronaldo. Spuds are in a great position and over time they can use that money really well, IF it all is true.

    But let me ask you this: who would have a bigger impact on Arsenal PL winning chances: Bale or Suarez? Or should I have asked who has got more bite? 😛

  170. AFC says:

    17ht, personally would not sign Suarez but if Wenger signs him what can I say. He is the only top ST available and I feel Wenger would have got Higuain has Real not up the price. If we sign Suarez, I will never personally cheer for him.

  171. AFC says:

    17ht, I would also add Wenger is under a huge amount of pressure to sign a big name player so Wenger may have to compromise his morals. If he had the chance and was not under the pressure I doubt he would sign him.

  172. James Bond says:

    TA – give it a rest already 😀

  173. AFC says:

    TA, I would have to say Suarez because he gets you goals and we do not have a goal scoring ST. I do see your point on Bale. He has only had one good season so I am not convinced by him. I do not think I will ever be convinced at a lot of his goals could and should have been prevented.

  174. AFC says:

    Did you see his goal in the final game last season. That was down to poor marking in my opinion and in the CL against Europes finest he will rarely score those types of goals.

  175. Glic says:

    AFC
    Wenger saying a few years back that we cant be considered a big club if we were to sell both Nasri and Cesc ( or words to that effect ) proves to me that he has no problem compromising his morals !. Yes, he has done brilliantly for us, but he no different from any other company guy on a massive wage. He has kept us in the dark and fed us enough shit over the years that I am now a mushroom farm billionaire !. hahaha

  176. AFC says:

    Glic, I see your point, Business before what is right for Wenger.

  177. TotalArsenal says:

    New Post New Post 🙂

    Wet your appetites for a very fine maiden post by Gino92 about the hottest topic around for us Gooners! Enjoy 🙂

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