OZIL STAYS! WHAT ABOUT SANCHEZ? TOCOPILLA SAYS NO TO CHINA

To be or not to be? That is the question on everybody’s lips. Unfortunately, the more one listens to the Sanchez transfer stories the more lost one becomes. As they say, only time will tell–except we just can’t wait for slow time to come do all the telling! Which is exactly why we’ve decided to sniff around some more for the scent. Where is Alexis, really?

There are so many fables in the air. Every team wants Sanchez, including, of course, Arsenal. To retain Sanchez, who is said to be on a salary of £140,000 per week, Arsenal are reported to have offered him £280,000/wk, which he has reportedly rejected. This is fable number one. There are only five players in Europe earning up to or above that. Ronaldo, Messi, Bale, Pogba and Neymar. Two of them are from Real Madrid, two from Barcelona and one from Manchester United. These are the three richest football clubs in the world, splashing out on five world mega-stars, great players without doubt but also football personalities who on their own merit are able to bring great commercial rewards to their respective teams. At this moment, the stage is being set for the birth of another mega-star, Kylian Mbappe. Who can’t guess his destination.

The quite reliable Total-Sportek (my source for all wages quoted here) published earlier this year that Arsenal offered Ozil and Sanchez new wages of £180,000 and £165,000 per week respectively. Let’s assume that negotiations have pushed both up to £200,000/wk. How does this figure compare with top wages in Europe?

The highest paid player in Italy (according to the Total-Sportek figures) is Gonzalo Hugain of Juventus who earns €7.7M per annum (£130,000/wk). Clearly, Italian teams cannot meet the reported wage demands of Ozil or Sanchez.

In Germany, the mighty Bayern Munich have Lahm, Ribery, Robben and Lewandowski topping the wage chart. The four are all on a salary of €160,000/wk (£140,000/wk). Don’t expect them to go crashing their salary structure for anybody when they are already tops in–and on–the field.  All the noise about Sanchez to Bayern has been coming from his fellow Chilean Arturo Vidal. Incidentally, Sanchez on his current deal earns more than Vidal who is on €150,000/wk (£130,000).

In France, there is PSG, a club running on petro-dollars. They can shoot from the hip but their highest paid player, Thiago Silva on €200,000/wk (£185,000), earns less than the suspected demands of Ozil and Sanchez. Given their deep pockets, the rumour that they are interested in Sanchez should not be taken lightly. It is, however, good to keep it in mind that Angel de Maria is on £150,000/wk as their second highest paid player followed by Cavani and Verratti at £110,000/wk each–the same as Ramsey and Walcott. Remember, oil prices have taken a tumble and the Arab Spring has not fully blown over.

Spain. Real Madrid and Barcelona. Between the two there is nowhere on earth for any player to go–except maybe China. Luckily for us the rivalry between the two clubs is so intense–and so based on pride–that each dare not touch any ‘cast off’ of the other. If Barcelona recruits Ozil the club president would fall. Same with Sanchez to Real. It has nothing to do with how good or poor the players are, it’s just plain pride. So, it should be of little interest to us that, apart from the mega-stars mentioned above, they have Suarez on £240,000, Modric on £180,000, Iniesta on £165,000 and Ramos on £160,000 per week as their other top earners. Modric’s salary equals what Ozil has been offered earlier this year. All others (in both teams) earn below that figure (£180,000/wk) which Ozil has long since rejected. These others include such top players as Iniesta, Pique, Busquets, Ramos, Benzema, and Kroos. Suddenly, Arsenal is not doing too poorly with its scaling of salaries.

We end our journey at the English Premier League where there is the mighty Manchester United and the sugar daddy duo of Manchester City and Chelsea. There are 9 players here on £200,000/wk or above. Pogba on £290,000, Rooney £250,000, Toure £230,000, Aguero £230,000, Ibrahimovic £220,000, David Silva £210,000, De Gea £200,000, Schweinsteiger £200,000 and Hazard £200,000. (ManCity has since scaled down some of their top salaries, but included lucrative bonus clauses to help meet FFP rules.) Any of these three clubs can outbid Arsenal, salary wise.

So far, there are no rumours that Ozil is wanted by any of them, but it’s been hinted that the three are all angling for Sanchez. I have my doubts.

Mourinho wants his players to conform to his script. Sanchez on the other hand must express himself. There is no meeting ground for the two and Mourinho cannot need what he does not want. Manchester United for Sanchez is out. This, remember, is merely as I see it.

Pep Guardiola has one phobia in football: the opponent gaining possession of the ball. Sanchez’ high-risk, high-dividend style is so high in turnovers that, despite all the noise about City wanting him, I can’t see Guardiola going for it. Pep, who is similar to Mourinho in this aspect, prefers players who can fit or be molded into his very structured style. Even Fabregas failed to adapt in the Pep-esque Barcelona and was sold. I don’t expect City to go for Sanchez. To me, these stories are fables.

Chelsea can afford Sanchez even though their highest paid player is Hazard at £200,000/wk. Surprised? Roman Abramovich, we must remember, is not a bottomless pit. He is already owed more than £1 billion by Chelsea. So, it is not difficult to imagine that the account books have begun to interest him. Nonetheless, his club have a tactical reason to be interested in Sanchez. Conte is a coach who is able to adapt a team to suit a player’s profile. Watch out for Conte.

China. Sanchez can overtake Carlos Tevez as the world’s best paid footballer if he goes to China. But Sanchez is the ultimate showman. The spectators that are most dear to his heart are there in the seaside town of Tocopilla, Chile and he would vanish from their sight, lost in the great expanse of China, if he dares go there. Tocopilla have said no to China.

Finally, Arsenal. Wenger values when players have come to understand themselves. He wants to keep Sanchez, but at the same time he would not want to rip the salary structure to pieces. Arsenal’s Board of Directors are ever casting envious glances in the direction of Bayern and Wenger knows that. Obviously, Wenger would not want Sanchez to walk away in a year’s time on a free. He also knows that if Sanchez is held back from leaving (while believing better options exist for him) he will be a pain in the neck on and off the field in his final season. If this is the case, Wenger would be right to cash in and bring in a worthy replacement. Sanchez is a fabulous player but he is replaceable. Please check out the Russian prodigy Aleksandr Golovin.

So, where are we? I would say we’ve made a little progress. We can now see that there is a good chance that we are Alexis’ best option. And, aren’t we now a little bit less paranoid about losing him?

Meanwhile, we wait for old man time to do the final telling.

by Pony Eye

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54 Responses to OZIL STAYS! WHAT ABOUT SANCHEZ? TOCOPILLA SAYS NO TO CHINA

  1. Frank says:

    Terrific write up

  2. 17highburyterrace says:

    Hey PE… Nice job… I too have been looking at TotalSportek re: salaries. As you mention it’s a little bit difficult to compare salaries when some contracts have performance incentives and the like. They also note that the figures on Messi and Ronaldo are their after tax incomes… Interestingly BOTH of them have been hauled before the authorities for tax evasion… Hmmm…

    I think you make some good points about the difficulty of selling Alexis to the biggest continental teams (which is what I think we ought to do this summer). Like us, Bayern and PSG would have to break their salary structure if money is the only thing Alexis is after. I also think the optics of selling to another PL team would be unbearable for the board and the manager. I disagree about Guardiola not wanting him. He wanted him at Barca, so why not at City?… Yes, he gives the ball away, but, when motivated, he works hard to get it back which is/was a huge part of the the tika-taka style…

    Though it seems extremely improbable, the rumors of a swap of Aguero for Alexis, I think, would suit us very well, esp. if there was some extra money to help pay El Kun’s higher salary. Frankly, I think Kun is the superior player, though his fitness record isn’t ideal.

    Keeping Alexis w/o him signing an extension seems increasingly what will happen, I fear…

  3. henrychan says:

    Hi all.. Hi PE.. Thanks for a very nice post.. Very helpful to what I have said yesterday in the last post..

    As I said, 20% rise isn’t good enough for Sanchez.. Ozil for 180k is a lot, according to his contribution last season..

    But 165k for Sanchez is too little.. He must be our highest paid players.. He is better than Ozil. I think this is another vital point to keep Sanchez..
    So if we can give them more than that.. Sanchez must given the 180k and Ozil 165k.. Hehehe..

    If Hazzard still around, no way will Chelsea bring Sanchez.. They play a similar position, like Ronaldo at Madrid. So Sanchez or Hazzard won’t go to Madrid either..

    Aquero is a different kind of striker IMHO.. We must worry a little with that situation..
    Pep may see it that way too.. Hehehe..
    So our Sanchez won’t be a competitor to Aquero, they will be a great combination.. As they play the 4-4-2 system..

    The problem with oily club is that their cash isn’t so oily thing.. Hehehe..
    The middle east and all country’s depend on oils are in hard situation now.. And get worse with Qatar – Saudi situation..
    So maybe we can take a long and deep breath.. A bit relax.. That the situation around help us to retain Sanchez at Emirates.. Hehehe..

    PE.. Golovin will be the next Ozil IMHO.. Not Sanchez.. Different type..

    And 17ht.. Both Ronaldo and Messi may end in jail if they refuse to pay the fine.. Hehehe..

  4. Pony Eye says:

    Frank thanks. You sound as if you’ve gotten a lot more relaxed about it all.

  5. Pony Eye says:

    Thanks HT. Comparing total incomes of players is not easy as you pointed out, because apart from basic salary their are incomes from things like bonuses and endorsement payments. But it is not unreasonable to imagine that it would be similar amongst the top teams and would have a strong relationship to the basic salary. The basic salary therefore becomes a good marker for comparing player incomes.

    As for Pep wanting Sanchez at Barca, Ibrahomovic was signed and dumped, same as Fabrigas, same as Sanchez. These 3 top players have one thing in common. They play the game their own way. I see Pep as a very meticulous fellow who plans to the last detail. That must mean his personality is averse to risks. Sanchez loves playing on the edge.

    Pep might have re-shaped his philosophy after his expousure at Bayern where he successfully used two non tiki-taka players in Robben and Ribery but still those two knew how to hoard the ball. It’s worth wondering why on earth Pep does not appreciate Aguero sufficiently. Pep can’t just compromise his vision.

  6. Pony Eye says:

    Henry, nice comments. People say Wenger should pay Alexis whatever he wants. No, Alexis cannot dictate. The market dictates. By the way there is EPL/FFP regulation on club wages. We hope to bring in at least 3 top signings/earners (includes Kola). We hope to give new deals to many players including super hiking Ozil’s and Sanchez’s wages. At the same time, we have to meet the FFP regulations. Yes, we would off load some players, saving some wages but not to run foul of the regulation says that super hiking ain’t possible. From what the market is, I’d give it a ceiling of £200,00/wk for our super stars.

    Good point about Sanchez not needed by Chelsea with Harzard there. But there is strong story that Harzard is wanted by R Madrid. Also it looks like Costa is on his way out. Is it a pointer when Sanchez said he wants to stay in London but with a team that wins trophies. We hadn’t won the FA cup by then.

  7. marcos says:

    Agree with u totally.I have always belivd dat arsenal offers ozil n alexis d avenue to be themselves.chelc bayyern man city will demand they conform to a style whch will affect their game.see aguero struggles wit guardiola.he sees Gabriel as a better suit to hs stle over aguero

  8. henrychan says:

    PE.. A couple years ago Hazzard was link with Madrid move.. But you know, nothing happened.. Just rumours..
    Sanchez rumours to Madrid won’t happen also.. It’s only to make their Megastar Ronaldo calmdown.. But Ronaldo won’t go.. No club have enough money to bring him.. Not even MU.. 350-400M is a very big money.. Not included salary..

    Interesting to know Ibra’s wages only 220k a week.. 11,4M a years.. I though it was 330k.. It’s easier to ask him to cut down 20k a week to join us.. Hehehe..
    Ibra is a Giant and a winner.. 11M is worthed for him.. Yes we will miss him for a couple months.. But the rest will be terrific.. Hehehe..

  9. jw1 says:

    With all the wild speculation on the pop-up blogettas for the last month?
    I’ve an appreciation for your perspective PE.
    It’s also the one I hold. After the situation seemingly became clear– with the logic of Bayern not seeing Alexis as an option– in both his playing style and their wage structure– it seems there might be only one dark-horse suitor for Sanchez IMO. That being PSG.

    There is, again IMO, no way Arsenal allow Alexis to go to City this Summer.
    The PR disaster would be untenable. The calm that has occurred following Wenger’s contract resolution– would immediately go full-boil.

    So– I agree that whatever attitude Sanchez might bring to bear if made to fulfill his contract– seems the only sensible route at present.

    If the front office can bring Lacazzette and Lemar/Mahrez to the club– Sanchez might himself pleasantly surprised by a resurgent AFC next term.

    And if so? We fans could find ourselves just as pleased and surprised to have Alexis re-sign for the club.

    A gamble for sure. But the only play left with hand that Wenger holds.

    jw1

  10. Waldo says:

    Fascinating article PE! The salaries of the respective players you’ve listed just goes to show how much more money Premier League clubs have at their disposal in contrast to their European counterparts.

    In terms of the challenge for Arsenal in retaining Ozil and Sanchez, I see it is more as a footballing challenge than a financial one. I suspect that Ozil and particularly Sanchez want to win. Not just the FA Cup but the Premier League and the Champions League. The problem for Arsenal is that Wenger somewhat struggles tactically and currently Arsenal’s squad is not good enough in certain positions for Arsenal to be able to consistently deliver the level of on field performances necessary to win those competitions. I suspect Arsenal’s lack of elite competitiveness combined with the consistently high quality performances of Ozil and Sanchez and their sheer desire to be part of winning teams is causing their reluctance to sign a new contract with Arsenal (which if you think about it is understandable).

    It appears (at least from media reports) as though both players are willing though to suppress those desires and remain at Arsenal in exchange for record breaking wages. All of which has created an uncomfortable situation for the club.

    As to what will happen, I doubt Arsenal will sufficiently address their squad deficiencies in the transfer window to the point where it will convince both players that they can secure Premier League and Champions League success at Arsenal. So most likely Arsenal will have to offer both players around the reported wages they are seeking if they want them to remain at the club beyond next season. The alternative option for Arsenal is to sell both players now and try to procure sufficient replacements from the transfer market.

    In terms of any potential alternatives, they would need to deliver at least the equivalent output of Alexis and Ozil in so far as the KPIs for the CAM roles. In terms of those KPIs, the way I see it, there are four key criteria for the CAM roles:

    1. Dribbles
    2. Throughballs
    3. Assists
    4. Goals

    In terms of the respective performances of Ozil and Alexis in relation to the aforementioned KPIs, their per game numbers over the past few seasons are:

    Ozil
    – Successful dribbles: 1.4 pg
    – Successful throughballs: 0.4 pg
    – 38% of games played he has provided an assist
    – 20% of games played he has scored a goal

    Alexis
    – Successful dribbles: 2.3 pg
    – Successful throughballs: 0.4 pg
    – 22% of games played he has provided an assist
    – 40% of games played he has scored a goal

    Using that data as a benchmark, there are very few players in Europe’s major leagues who, over multiple seasons, have been able to produced the sort of number that Ozil and Alexis have been able to produce.

    One possible target is Ajax’s Hakim Ziyech (who is somewhat of a blend between Alexis and Ozil in his style of play). His respective numbers are:

    – Successful dribbles: 1.9 pg
    – Successful throughballs: 0.3 pg
    – 35% of games played he has provided an assist
    – 35% of games played he has scored a goal

    So arguably Ziyech would be an upgrade on Ozil. That said, in contrast to Sanchez, the young Moroccan has yet to prove that he can match the sheer volume of goals that Chilean has been able to produce season on season. So Arsenal would likely experience a drop in output if Ziyech was brought in to replace Alexis.

    In terms of players like Thomas Lemar, who Arsenal have been heavily linked with, Florian Thauvin and Emil Forsberg all of whom have had very productive seasons with Monaco, Marseille and RB Leipzig respectively, none of those player have yet to demonstrate that they can produce that same standard of performance season on season. Until such time as they can, I think Arsenal should hold off recruiting such players. Otherwise Arsenal run the risk of wasting a lot of money on recruiting a Mahrez style player (i.e. a fundamentally average player who has had one great season).

    Given the lack of potential alternatives capable of consistently producing the KPIs equivalent to that of Alexis, I think Arsenal should at a minimum hold on to Sanchez for next season, even if he doesn’t extend his contract with the club.

    As for Ozil, if Arsenal can secure Ajax’s Hakim Ziyech (which might be an uphill battle given Everton have already signed Davy Klassen, Ziyech’s fellow CAM at Ajax last season), I’m comfortable with Arsenal cashing in on the German this transfer window.

  11. Waldo says:

    Good shout henrychan on Ibrahimovic for the CF role. The big Swede is great in the air, has surprisingly good off the ball movement for a big man and has a phenomenal goal scoring record. A perfect fit as far as I’m concerned.

  12. Pony Eye says:

    Jwl, thanks.
    It beats me why we think so poorly of our selves. There is no way to look at it that Arsenal are not one of the most attractive teams in Europe. Even our wage structure is in the top 7. For example in the epl City has the biggest wage bill at £225M, Manu @ £220.8M, Chl @ £218M, and Ars @ £200.5M only 11% less than City. What more, we are growing in a substainable manner. If am to put my money on it, Sanchez stays unless sombody comes with silly money.

  13. Pony Eye says:

    Waldo, great comments.
    But I believe that at 28+ it is less of a footballing challenge and more of financial. In football at 28+ shelf life is about 4 years only. Unfortunately wages are only viewed in contrast to those in your world. It might be huge but never enough.

  14. jw1 says:

    Hey PE?

    Is this anywhere else on the UK ‘press radar’:
    http://www.independent.ie/sport/soccer/premier-league/manchester-city-could-face-transfer-ban-over-signing-16yearold-argentine-35882560.html

    This article purports a Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) ruling is due next week.
    May be why Alexis ‘can’t say yet’ what his decision is?

    jw1

  15. Pony Eye says:

    jw1,
    If they are found guilty, which they could jolly well be (btwin EU countries is a technical point) then it is good news for us in the longer term, but maybe bad news in the short term. They might embark on a reckless spending spree now and who knows about our Alexis. However the EPL/FFP regulations on wages remains a check on the number and wage status of players they can recruit.

    One thing is clear. Balancing all the details is never easy for any club. Everywhere (on the field, in recruitments etc) it is the same fierce competition guided by sets of rules.

  16. allezkev says:

    Get post PE, very informative.

    How about Ozil and Alexis playing out their contracts, both leaving on bosmans next summer and both getting substantial signing on fees at their new clubs to offset one more season on their current salary?
    Arsenal should have sorted it a year ago, but didn’t so we have to suck it up.
    I’d settle for one more year of Alexis in an Arsenal shirt.

    Oxlade-Chamberlain needs sorting as well …

  17. Pony Eye says:

    Kev, that looks the smartest thing for them to do. But then you wonder why all players don’t do it. Maybe because they can never be sure of what would be on offer for them. Also just imagine a season long injury to a Bosman free and that’s one season of no club, no football and no income. By the time of getting back into the system such a player’s value would have plummeted. Ozil might not bother with such a gamble, but I wouldn’t say same of Sanchez.

    Interesting that the parent club can resign the player on a Bosman free. The parent club just competes with the others. It’s all a balancing act.

  18. henrychan says:

    Jw1.. Great news.. Hehehe..
    So now.. Almost no club to worry.. Maybe only MU.. Cause the will sell Rooney and Martial.. And the lost Ibra also..

    Sanchez said that he is already decided where he want to be.. He just need to deal with the game against Germany first..
    So we will soon know the answer in a very short time..
    If the worst case come.. We still have plenty of time to bring a new player..

    Rumours said that our 35M offer to bring Lemar is failed.. Monaco think he is worth 75M.. Hehehe..
    Suddenly Monaco become the richest club in the world.. All his players are
    50 to 100M.. Hahaha..

  19. allezkev says:

    That’s true PE, maybe Walcott had that in mind a couple of years back when he took it to the 11th hour before agreeing his current lucrative contract.

    I see that Ozil has reportedly renewed his luxury box at the Emirates, so I guess, if that’s true, that Mesut is staying next season.

    PE it would be a gamble either way for both the club and the players, but maybe Wenger thinks it’s the lesser of two evils because if Alexis leaves for Man City we can only imagine the reaction and the toxic undercurrent to the forthcoming season.

    Personally I think you’re right, players come and go, as long as the club replaces like for like then it’s manageable.

  20. TotalArsenal says:

    Fine midweek posts by Seventeenho and PE. All I could add has already been said, I think.

    Re Seventeenho’s post, I believe that we have a quality squad already and another attacker makes us ready to go. Some should leave because they are not good enough for Arsenal and space needs to be made for a couple of youngsters.

    Re PE’s tour de force: it all depends on what Alexis really cares about: money, loyalty, prestige, prizes. If it is money, surely China is the next destination – a number of South-Americans have gone there already…. If it is prestige, I can see him move to Bayern of PSG. If is loyalty, we know the answer. But I don’t think Wenger will sell unless he has excellent replacement, which would be hard to achieve. Whatever happens we will be fine.

  21. Pony Eye says:

    I think it was the Napoli President who, a few years back, when asked if he would sell a certain player, replied that he would sell the whole team if the price was good. Great philosophy disguised as a joke. The key is to buy well but first sell well.

  22. allezkev says:

    I try not to take too much notice of transfer tittle-tattle, but the recent rumour that Arsenal are seriously considering a €28million bid from Marseille for Olivier Giroud sounds like it could be a go’er.

    The thing is, would Wenger allow Giroud and Alexis to leave in the same transfer window?

  23. henrychan says:

    Hi all..
    Recent news saying we will soon get Lacazette.. ESPN.. BBC.. Skysport and so on all said the same thing..

  24. TotalArsenal says:

    Kev
    A supersub is v important and with Giroud we have one alright. We would miss him tremendously if he were to go. Cannot see it myself.

  25. allezkev says:

    I agree TA, the thing is he might wanna move because of the World Cul and getting a regular game…

  26. TotalArsenal says:

    Could be, Kev. And I would understand it too, but we can’t let him go as only Kane had less minutes between goals than Ollie. And he played the assist of the season against the Chavskies…. 🙂😂

  27. allezkev says:

    Ok Total, you win, he stays… 😊

    Less than two weeks and Arsenal play their first game vs Sydney, whatever happened to the Close Season?

    It’ll be interesting to see the make up of the squad that Wenger will be taking, whose missing pending a transfer out, which youngsters make the cut, will Lacazette be on board?

  28. henrychan says:

    TA.. if Lacazette and Mahrez arrived.. Then we know Sanchez wont be around.. hehehehe..

    So make sure about our hope and wish.. hehehehe..

  29. Jnyc says:

    Excellent post. If Alexis insists on playing for another English club, we should make him play one more season, and leave on a free. We have him at a reasonable salary for this coming season, and by today’s inflated prices, we got him cheap from Barca. If we’re supposedly not desperate for cash anymore, no need to suffer the humiliation to our supporters and players of selling to a rival.

  30. njk84sg says:

    Looks more and more likely that Lacazette will join. More of a Alexis than an out and out striker, so we will see how Alexis will decide on his future.

  31. njk84sg says:

    About Ollie, the team needs him. I could not find another player of his stature in the team.

    So, keep Alexis, Ozil and Ollie, and get rid of Theo. The team does not need him anymore, unless he is ok to switch to a right winger, which we already have Ox.

  32. Goonereris says:

    Hi folks. Been a while.

    Nice topic and comments all round, as well.

    JK, Lacazette is actually a box striker who also shoots from distance. He rarely operates from the wings as Alexis can do; that may be the reason Wenger is NOT loath to add Mbappe and Mahrez/Lemar. Between the 3, Alexis can be more than well replaced. I won’t miss Alexis if we are able to swing those deals, but will worry if we missed out on Mbappe and do the other names. Mbappe can cause more havoc from the wings than Alexis can; where Alexis is more seasoned and can be focused. (I wonder if all that makes sense).

    I agree that Theo must see such arrivals as his Nunc Dimitis, and he is an intelligent man. Gibbs, Debuchy, Carl Jenks and one of Szczessny and Ospina are others who should be on the way out.

  33. allezkev says:

    http://www.skysports.com/football/news/11671/10935561/everton-confirm-sandro-ramirez-signing-from-malaga-on-four-year-deal

    Everton are doing quite a lot of interesting business, they could be one to watch next season.

  34. Goonereris says:

    Ronald Koeman isn’t hanging about this term and seems determined to fulfill what his side threatened, but failed, to do last term: enter European places. He did harbour thoughts of a top 4 place until his side caved in.

    That’s what, 4 signings already, that I recall- Jordan Pickford, Klaassen, Henry Onyekuru and now Ramirez? These are good buys, if you ask me. Note that they are also linked with Giroud and Michael Keane. Well, time will tell.

  35. njk84sg says:

    Eris,

    It looks like if Iwobi develops well he can be like Mbappe.

    Mahrez seems closer than Mbappe, as i do not see that we can afford the world record transfer. Maybe we can see Mbappe and Monaco agreeing to let him move to London for less.

    Our scouts should work overtime to get the players we need.

  36. Goonereris says:

    Hmmm. You may have a point there, jk, but the thing is Iwobi doesn’t score enough goals and isn’t even as decisive. However, he can be electric from the wings when he goes direct.

    Hopefully, seeing youngsters like Lemar and Mbappe will motivate him to step up to another level.

  37. Pony Eye says:

    After signing a striker, my strong wish is for the recruitment of a top class well rounded CM deployed as deepest CM. With such a player we can easily deploy in a back 4 or back 3. (Wenger’s back 4 is more of a back 2).

    Our MF is still weak because of the absense of a good defensive player there who is also good with the ball. If no recruitment there, I’d be hoping Holden is moved up for that role.

  38. Pony Eye says:

    Holden has been praised to high heavens. If his play is observed more closely it’s clear that it’s not really his defensive qualities (Not bad at all) that draws the praise, but his use of the ball. The better rounded players are made for the CM. When their team have the ball they are excellent attackers. When the opponents have the ball they transforms into excellent defenders.

  39. Pony Eye says:

    Wenger might be reluctant to introduce a fresh starter in the CM because putting either of Xhakà or Ramsey on the bench would create some strain. But then fielding 2 players there, both not too good defensively would cost us some points. Without ruthless efficiency the summit would always elude.

  40. Goonereris says:

    Time will tell, PE. Wenger has never been one for a strictly defensive midfielder but appears to favour DMs who get involved in the offensive play, not just sit back like a Makalele did. This is the reason that whilst fans thought the world of Coquelin’s tigerish play in midfield, he still went looking for first, Elneny and then Xhaka. Having said that, I saw a link to Carvalho of Lisbon (seems like a yearly ritual now); and the German, Leon Goretzka. Ball playing DMs, both. Who knows?

  41. Goonereris says:

    Hey ho! Looks like Alexander Lacazette has passed his medical and due to sin a 5 year deal. That’s two in the bag, before the start of pre-season.
    Something new happening with Stan Kroenke, it would seem. I read he just captured one of the best free agents in the NBA, Paul Millsap, for his Denver nuggets side. A possible game changer, it is said. Maybe, we can believe we could also go for and get Mbappe, for real.

  42. Pony Eye says:

    Eris, completely agree with you and that’s why am rooting for Holden as DM because he is so gifted with the ball. Am not mesmerized by his name tag “defender”.

    Lacazette is in the bag. Bayern say Alexis’s wage expectation beyond them. Beginning to look more and more he ain’t going anywhere. Am not dreaming of Mbappe. £125M is too wild a dream.

  43. Goonereris says:

    So, what would you say about €90m being touted as our offer for both William Carvalho and Martins? Don’t even know where that rumour came from.

    I will like to see Holding in midfield too, but some would say he may lack the required agility. I’d say he is worth a try there; he is good enough with the ball and would retain his defensive nous.

  44. njk84sg says:

    PE and Eris,

    It is best for Holding to continue his stint at central defense.
    If we convert him to CM, it might not be a good time for him as he is slowly getting better at his current position.

  45. henrychan says:

    PE.. Eris.. Are you want to say that Ramsey is not good enough for us..?? Hehehe.. We must see the statistic with and without him..

    Carvalho is a great player.. He will be a very solid buying.. If we can add him to the squad.. as our third recritment after Kolasinac and Lacazette.. and if we keep Sanchez.. wow we will be HOT.. hahaha..

    Martins who..?? Why not bring their top scorer Bas Dost.. hehehehe..

  46. Pony Eye says:

    njk, @ Holden. Am toying with that idea based on what I see his attributes as. He is good positionally ie defensive awareness, good with the ball at his feet with good vision for passes. I only worry a little bit for his speed and agility which, IMO, is more crucial for the last ditch defensive tackles. He will as well slowly get better at DM.

    Henry, Ramsey is good enough, Xhaka is good enough but the two together at CM slightly undermines us defensively. It’s a game of balance.

  47. henrychan says:

    PE.. Ramsey is an AM who able to tackle and cut the ball.. something that Ozil can’t.. He play his rule so great.. as great as Cazorla did..
    His partner with Xhaka will become stronger and stronger.. as our CDM.. Don’t underestimate them to soon.. hehehe..

  48. henrychan says:

    What about we find some RWB also.. cause Bell and Ox might be out this season..

  49. njk84sg says:

    Ko Henry,

    Rambo and Xhaka cannot play every game next season. We need to pray that Santi has better luck with his fitness in the coming season. If not, we need Le Coq to be better and more mobile.

    It is good to see Ozil and Welbeck in the training pictures on the official site, as well as Perez. Let’s see if we can keep all the existing players bar Theo and get the players we need. I feel that we are missing a midfielder, but I do not know where to put him as we have lots of normal midfielders, but we just need that special one in case Santi continues being injury-hit season after season.

    I am quietly optimistic but we will see after the official site announces Mahrez and Lacazette.

    Cheers,
    JK

  50. allezkev says:

    I wonder if we’re still in for Mbappe?

  51. Pony Eye says:

    Mbappe at £125 M? If that is done I will join the WOB.

  52. Pony Eye says:

    Lacazette is a top buy. He strikes the ball so well, enough power for enough accuracy. No wonder he has the highest conversion rate in Europe’s top 5 leagues. Approx 2 goals in 5 attempts. Incredible numbers!

  53. TotalArsenal says:

    New Post New Post 🙂

  54. Goonereris says:

    Pony Eye says:
    July 5, 2017 at 18:07
    Mbappe at £125 M? If that is done I will join the WOB.

    That had me in stitches, even if not intended to be funny. 🤣🤣

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