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Cesc return is on! Kruls the keeper & a shock omission! Have We Seen The End of 4-2-3-1? Pre-Season Starts on Sunday Unless You Follow the Reserves

Morning all,

Another young one seems on his way out as Milwall have given a trial to Arsenal forward Nigel Neita and practically all the newspapers report that Arsenal are going to try and get Fabregas back. £25 million is the amount we have to pay, not a penny more or a penny less and if the player wants to rejoin,  he’ll be ours.

Yeah right!

LadyArse blog reports that Dutch website AD.nl are linking us to Newcastle United keeper Tim Krul. That’s a new one!

Onto the ‘real stuff’…

Later on today, Ivan, Arsene and the boys will board a plush Emirates aircraft and head off on tour. It’s the clubs second pre-season Far East tour and it all kicks-off on Sunday at 13:30 BST against an Indonesian Dream Team side. (Sounds like a television programme….)

I am really looking forward to it, maybe we will get a hint as to how Arsene Wenger will set his side up for the coming season.

I hope Stewart Robson is having a day-off because I can’t stand him giving the most biased commentary when Arsenal play. He was laying into our new by last night as France beat Ghana. He really is a spiteful man.

A typical 4-2-3-1 Set-Up


The 4-2-4 Set-up used by Uraguay and BVB09


I am really keen to find out if Wenger will switch to a different formation (4-2-4) similar to what Mannschaft DFB set-up or how the Bavarians set-up last season to clinch a treble. Even Jurgen Klopp mentioned how difficult it was for the 2 fullbacks to keep defending and attacking in the popular 4-2-3-1 set-up over the course of a match let alone a full season.

Back to the tour and according to Jeorge Bird’s Arsenal Youth website, my favourite youth player Nico Yennaris has not made the cut for the tour this time round. I wonder what this true Gooner, who was a ball boy for Arsenal at the age of nine, will have to do to make it with us. Like Meade, will he be another vertically challenged player with obvious talent that will not make the squad? Or is he just not good enough as some of us think he could be?

Watching him in the next generation and u-21 games, he is obviously too good for that level but is he showing enough to make the jump to the main squad? In my opinion his two bouts of glandular fever recently has affected his stamina and he probably needs matches more than a tour.

Maybe the reason could be as simple as Ivan telling Arsene to reduce the number of players so we could save money on food and hotel cost. With Arsenal you never know.

Another interesting omission is Damien Martinez, our Argentine goalkeeper who has a bright future ahead of him if he is patient enough. The other lucky ones to be give a boarding pass apart from the expected first team players and injury prone players are Ignasi Miquel, Chuks Aneke, Serge Gnabry, Chuba Akpom and Thomas Eisfeld.

The positive news is that we have 2 possible new Cesc Fabregas’s in the squad in the form of Kristoffer Olsson and Gedion Zelalem.

Those who keep up with the youth squad will know that these two boys have talent; all they need is the platform to show their talent but with people like Robson reminding us that Arsenal has not won a trophy for so long it is proving difficult to introduce young talents.

I keep asking myself the question if Cesc had joined us 2 seasons ago as a 16 year old, if he would have been given the same opportunity now as he did then?

Looking at the current squad, we are truly going to be in deep trouble if Mikel Arteta or Aaron Ramsey get injured before the start of the season! Unless of course Arsene pulls a rabbit out of the padlocked bum bag he carries…

Coming back to the topic of the formation for next season, I really don’t think re-using the 4-2-3-1 formation is suitable for a team with Giroud or Poldolski as its spearhead. I understand we definitely need a double pivot because we currently lack a Daniele de Rossi or a Roman Neustadter in our squad.

However, none of the defensive midfielders we have been linked with can truly play a Makele or Gilberto role for us so I have forgotten about that idea.

Some strongly believe that Arsene Wenger is tactically inept but regulars on this site know I think Arsene changes his formation quite often. In fact he used 4-4-2 against Liverpool and Stoke last August and September, 3-5-2 to come back from 1-0 down against WHU in October and 4-2-4 against Reading, Wigan and Southampton. I however, think the man’s biggest flaw is that he is too slow to react at crucial times. Maybe that is why ‘Old Rednose’ described him as the best poker player.

An example of Arsene’s lack of flexibility and reaction was at Old Trafford when Jack was sent off for a second bookable offence, it was clear to all of us that Jack was walking on thin ice.

Arsene obviously understands football and maybe over complicates things on occasions. Had Ramsey not really taken to that defensive midfield role alongside Arteta at the end of last season we would really have been in trouble. In fact against Liverpool at home Arsene played 4-1-3-1-1 allowing Ramsey to sit really deep as the defensive midfielder on his first ever game in that role.

Using the Jack and Santi combination was not working from as early as October but Arsene’s lack of ‘tactical agility’ made him persist with a midfield 3 of Arteta, Santi and Jack, who on paper should have been up there with the likes of Xavi, Busquet and Iniesta but were disastrous to say the least.

(I will leave you faithful experts to debate why that combination did not work out effectively; irrespective of how long they had played together, as the saying goes great players should be able to play together.)

Should Mikel or Aaron get injured, we would be left with Oxlade-Chamberlain, Rosicky and Aneke as potential defensive midfielders to face Aston Villa, Fulham or the Scum before the end of August. Mind you, knowing Wenger, he probably has Miguel earmarked for the left footed defensive midfielder he adores.

That scares me to say the least and makes me wonder why Yennaris was not taken on the tour?

I think The Ox will feature more in the central midfield role to accommodate Ryo or Serge Gnabry this season. That on paper will give us a lot of flair and speed but both players lack experience, especially in the case of Gnabry. Aneke could do a Yaya Toure like job for us as he did for Crewe but will the jump be a gap too wide for him next season?

The lack of defensive midfield and centre back covers makes me think Arsene has something up his sleeve for the coming weeks. In central defence, we know Sagna will cover if needed and Miguel has to be trusted or let go because he is not learning from playing at the reserve level.

Looking at the squad makes me think Sir Steve’s post a few days ago had more truth than I gave him credit for.

On that sad note, have a safe and blessed day.

Written by Ginge

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290 comments on “Cesc return is on! Kruls the keeper & a shock omission! Have We Seen The End of 4-2-3-1? Pre-Season Starts on Sunday Unless You Follow the Reserves

  1. Morning all,

    Very interesting post Ts, even though tactics go over my head. :(

    All the time we have the same players we finished the season with, I can’t see AW trying something new.

    Interesting questions re Cesc and Yennaris, I didn’t know the latter had suffered with GF twice, we all know what that did for Lansbury..

    As for a 16 yrs old Cesc joining now, I doubt he would have been given such chances, don’t we have a a few players now who at 16 look good but we never see them….

    Eisfeld, Aneke and Akpom are at least on the bus….

  2. Arsene should wake up and make us proud by buying us more players to compete next season

  3. Morning guys.
    Great post Ginge.
    As i have admitted before, i am a little ignorant on the tactical side of the game….hey, i grew up playing 2-3-5 lol.
    It really only has been since talking to Hhers that i have come to understand them more.
    I am more on song when it comes to an individual player, and Cesc would have mate it anywhere, anyhow, anytime….he is that good, in opinion.
    I posted late last night, and i thank Lewis for his response, a question….why don’t we send a team of kids….17-20 year olds, on a tour at this time of year as well?
    No need to have them playing in massive stadiums, but i guarantee this…..if we got a decent team of young guys playing here in Oz, people would go to watch.
    It is not easy to keep up to date on the guys coming through, but the internet helps and some over here know plenty of what these kids offer.
    It would be a great experience for them, and wold give other Gooners a chance to see Arsenal play…kids or not, we would love it!

  4. Good post TS.
    I see Kolo is advising Suarez to stay at Liverpool. Despite the fact that he seldom played at Man City and has never played a single game for Liverpool he reckons that the local KFC do a huge bargain bucket deal.

  5. Morning all…

    Thanks Rico… sorry for the hassle of the 2 images… ;)

    Cheers Scott… I saw your question yesterday… I think it will be a good idea at least for IG… but maybe insurance cost etc…

  6. Thanks Adam… next time I may seek your expertise to sprinkle some of your excellent vocabulary on my post for me… :)

  7. Indeed re Kolo… talking about selling your soul…

    Its funny how when he got done for doping he sort reference from ATC and AW but he can’t be bother to say nice things about us…

    Who can blame him though… he went from invincible to a Carragher wanna be

  8. I saw that comment Scott, I too think it’s a great idea. Maybe the club would worry that too many of our young stars would be in the shop window ;)

    Adam, Kolo is a plank..

  9. I saw the interview with Toure an hour or so ago.
    Lacked class, for sure, but seemed to be going through the motions.
    I don’t think it is his dream destination :)

  10. Ok, i will email uncle Ivan about the youth tour :)

  11. ….Don’t forget to ask for a commission for you and I Scott…

  12. He spent that on Sanogo mate :)

  13. So B-52 has priced himself out of a move to Frankfurt… he should be lucky teams such as Malaga and E.Frunkfurt were interested in the first place but his advisors need some sort of colonical irrigation to flush out the excessive ego floating in their systems…

    Rico… did the ice pack work last night? ;)

  14. As Rico said you should have heard Stewart sticking the daggers into Sanogo yesterday…

    I thought Yaya lead the line well… his off the ball movement ensured France scored the winning goal but hey… what do I know?

  15. Robson…..not worth commenting on.

  16. Hi Ts, no, Drs in just over an hour…. :(

  17. Wow… lucky doctor :o

    Talking off health… has anyone heard from JW.. the old gent from Potters patch?

  18. From what I saw of Yaya he was looking good, just because he missed from a difficult angle and go pushed off the ball to give i away, Rosbson thought he was rubbish… Idiot…

  19. AW has gone to the middle East now… the blogs say we are after the Iragi u-20 left back


  20. Likewise Rico re Yaya… He worked very hard for a young man who has just landed a dream move to AFC… and its not even like he has not scored in this competition…

    Podga just did a steady job considering he plays for JUve… he was not exceptional… the 4’6 Ghanain no.10 caused him and Kongrobia lots of problems… but again Robson thought Podga was excellent. phew…

    Enough said about the gimp…

  21. No Ts, I think he got a bit fed up with stuff here, such a shame. Hope his ticker is doing well…..

    Oz gunner is another who hasn’t been around after his probs with health, hope he’s ok…

  22. He’s not slow either is he Ts, and he’s no lightweight.. just hope his injury woes are behind him….

  23. Scott, mentioned last week he spoke with Oz and he is well…

    I hope JW’s ‘ticker’ is ok and he is enjoying the swimming with his gran kids…

    On Yaya… Dev said he looked good and from what I have seen so far he looks very different to what we have had under AW…

    He looks a bit more polished than OG…

  24. I missed that about Oz, good…

    He reminds me of another player, but can’t think who Ts… Maybe Zaha?

  25. I see there are reports suggesting we are still hoping to sign Williams. Swansea have signed six new players – wonder if any are central defenders ;)

  26. Just seen that too Syg, shame….

  27. tsgh says:
    July 11, 2013 at 10:40 am

    Wenger will look anywhere for players he doesn’t have to pay much for. Iraq?

    I once remember Saudi beating Belgium in a world cup match 2-1 (1990 I think) and a Saudi player scored the best ever goal that one would or could ever see. from one end of the pitch to the other evading tackles right, left and centre.
    Then it showed the full squad having to do prayers five times a day.
    The commentator in the TV studios asked the pundit – a Div 1 manager – if he’d ever fancy taking on the guy and signing him.
    “No,” came the blunt answer.

  28. It is a shame, Rico….

    Am I right in hearing that Swansea have offloaded Bartley?

  29. Hi Syg…

    Shame re Clement… maybe for the best… at least the boy has shown some loyalty considering he was going to be dropped last summer ;)

    After having one good season in Ligue 1, maybe we do not reallly need him especially not the 25M Lyon want for him…

  30. …. yeah I am – just noticed they’ve loaned him out

  31. yes Syg, to Birmingham city… another player who rushed his hand

  32. re 11:19 find me that youtube clip please… must be hilarious

  33. Good read ts.this preseason games will tell us alot about how we’ll shape.up tactically next season.

    Slightly off topic…Guardiola has made a personal request for Thiago and he has apparently decided j.martinez will play CB for Bayern.if it turns out to be true then he is disrupting a machine that was not broken since martinez is phenomenal in midfield.also what is his obsession with playing DM’s at CB?…surely bayern can afford to buy one…

  34. Ha ha Syg and yes, to Brum..

    The report I read said Grenier had been offered a new contract but was undecided… Looks like that’s now changed….

  35. Ts – agree, had he stayed and waited, he’d be in with a chance now… He could last season…

  36. Hiya Ginge …. another one bites the dust, eh?..
    .. It’d be nice to know how active we actually are ….
    …or is Wenger just donning is top hat, cape, Zorro mask and cane and prowling the backstreets of Paris or Mombassa looking for whippet-esque fifteen year old’s who can run do Cruyff-turns and Ronaldo-stepovers …?

  37. Syg is right… it is confirmed…


    Rico, bookmark this site for the latest sports news ;)

  38. Back in a bit….

  39. 1994 – I was wrong

  40. According to the Spanish website Sport, PSG’s Brazilian defender Thiago Silva would come to an agreement with the club FC Barcelona to change next season. The contract is for a period of five years, with an equivalent to those of Xavi and Iniesta transfer. This agreement would open the possibility for the Catalan club to send a formal offer to the Paris Club, which has just announced that Leonardo, his manager in charge of all transfers, would leave at the end of Mercato.

    SYG… the poker cards that needed to be played by the big players have been played now…

    People believe AW is awaiting a decision from CF4 after his holiday before he makes a move…
    But that is a stupid move because we need another ball winning midfielder… not Cesc per se

    I don’t think we will buy a striker now unless one of Poldi or OG12 get injured or lose serious form.

    That makes A. Williams a necessary requirement

  41. SYg… i honestly think Frimpong is better than Kondogbia

  42. if thiago goes to bayern lets put in a cheeky bid for thiago…

  43. *cheeky bid for kroos *

  44. Frimpong has all the right attributes. He’s just a thick cnut.

    There’s a fine line between success and failure, unless of course you are really, really good, and a lot of that is how you conduct yourself, both on the field and off it.

    Nik Bendtner is a prime example.
    The top 55-cap striker in Danish football who nets just under a goal a game, and no-one wants him?

  45. As per yesterday on distance covered by players SYG…

    According to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index, Norwich City have covered the most distance of any top- flight team as off week 36

    Collectively, the ­Canaries have clocked up 1,879 miles. That kind of tenacity and work-rate emphasises why they’ve made an ­immediate impact on their return to the top flight and look certain to survive this season.

    Intriguingly, ­Newcastle had led this table earlier in the season. But the Toon have now slipped to sixth in the rankings with 1,811 miles.

    Despite that, Newcastle have more players who have covered over 100 miles than any other team in the Premier League, with nine of the Magpies in the “100 mile club.”

    Newcastle lost 2-1 at Arsenal in their last ­outing. Hatem Ben Arfa scored the opener for Newcastle and now has three goals in the ­Barclays Premier League from just 16 shots.

    Yohan Cabaye covered the most ground for Newcastle in that game with 5.27 miles, as the visitors out-ran Arsenal by 50.15 miles to 48.75 miles.

    Norwich will have to guard against the Toon’s crosses. The Newcastle full-backs have ­delivered 126 balls into the penalty area.

    The Canaries were held to a 1-1 draw in their last game against Wigan last Sunday.

    David Fox covered the most ground in that game, with 6.54 miles, as Norwich out-ran Wigan by 62.35 miles to 59.4.

    Wesley Hoolahan scored for Norwich with his third goal of the ­season, coming from 26 shots at goal with ­exactly half on target.

    Hoolahan also has three assists to his name this season

    And he is third in the list for the Canaries for overall distance ­covered, at 130 miles.


  46. Ts for the 4-2-4 formation i feel we are ill equipped with players to play out wide since that formation requires AM’s there.in the squad only santi and maybe jack/rosicky.the reason i say this is that unless we have centrally inclined players that formation would be too attack oriented and our CM’s will be exposed against teams playing with 3 players in midfield.i doubt we’ll see it much often unless we are chasing a late goal.

  47. Excellent point SYG re Frimpong… is he really hungry for success?

    He was the first to make a senior appearance ahead of JW and JET albeit on the bench but all the partying and ghetto backward mentality… well
    Hi Ktr7, I like the Kroos idea… but I think AW did not entertain players like Ozyabug and Holtby because of JW… it will be interesting if that happened.

    I can see Kroos moving to BVB 09 for Lewandowski to move to FC Munchen…

  48. I agree with you in part Ktr7. But the reason why I think we need a change from the 4-2-3-1 is that we put too much pressure on our fullbacks to defend and cross the ball, which in effect makes us prone to sucker punch against bigger and efficient team re Santos against Schalke

    Manuel Pellegrini had great results with villareal using 4-2-4 and Tito use dit last season transistioning from a 4-3-3 or 4-2-3-1 to 4-2-4 easily during games. No change of personnel needed.
    Note Munchini used that in the title winning year at $hitty

    Very strong system. Not only does it give you an edge in counterattacking and striking, it also is very adjustable. You can switch to a 4-3-2-1, a 4-3-3, a 4-4-4, 4-51, even a 4-6-0. You can make very strong adjustments when you need to. It has a lot of flexibility and ensures you can have the numbers to get the ball (usually. Word of caution-it can be confusing to execute and it also requires efficient forwards. All-in-all a great system

    It is very beneficial if the opponent has problems in the connection between its defending midfielder and the two centre backs behind him. Also it make the opponent build its counter attack from the lines which takes long time and can be stopped easily.


    As you rightly stated, very lacking in width but more often then not the attacking midfielders generally drift to the sides or start there as attacking wingers. Many times the forwards aren t strikers and change up with the wingers to create a very fluid system, used quite well in united and roma, lack of a physical presence up top means it works best in a counter attacking formation.

    But BVB 09 managed to beat Unreal with that formation last April without using any wingers as Gotze was injured

  49. Metro Sport ‏@Metro_Sport 11m
    Fail! Chelsea score own goal by selling Arsenal onesie in official club shop: http://ow.ly/mRl8a #cfc #afc


  50. Very interesting

    AFC Academy ‏@AFCAcademy 21h
    Just been told by the Arsenal staff they’ve been ordered to deter fans from purchasing Number 4 Mertesacker shirts. #afc
    Retweeted 402 times

  51. Ts thats why i believe wenger truly believes JW10 can.make the trequartista role his own with a proper preseason.thats why am sceptical.about the cesc rumours to be honest.

  52. AFC-Kwakum-AFC ‏@KwackiZ 2m
    @SillySeason According to Marca this morning. #AFC have now offered #LFC £43m for Suarez

  53. Good Morning Rico and All.

    Good read but to be honest, sometimes I get lost in formation translations. Only the 442, 424, and 433 seems so clear as a day light without the fog.

    btw, who is this Ginge guy??? :-)

  54. Ts you make very good points but my question is how tactically flexible our players are.teams like bayern/barca/dortmund have very intelligent players with more experience than ours which helps them easily transition.i don’t think in my opinion we are properly equipped with such players like say iniesta who can play any role in midfield/attack without dropping his standards to allow such smooth transitions.i hope am wrong and the preseason proves it.

    I agree on the 4-2-3-1 especially on fullbacks.i heard that Bould and wenger do not agree on the role of fullbacks.in the latter part of the season they stayed back more which lead to more clean sheets but our attack suffered.i hope we find a compromise in preseason.am also intrigued that you mentioned how we played 3-5-2 at w/ham which helped us completely dominate caroll/cole especially late in the latter part of the game since we had a spare man always.

  55. Great post TS.

    Like you AW drives me mental with his lack of changes when it is as clear as day things aren’t working. We are treated to the standard 68th minute changes, when it needed to be done much earlier. As you have alluded there is too Much pressure put on the full backs to get up and down the pitch, and Sagna is another year older so he’s going to need a little bit more cover. The end of the season saw a change in tack to a more defensive unit, so it quite possible that may be our new set up. Add some creative and goal scoring talent, on top of our solid foundation and we could be headed back to a similar set up to 10 years ago. Lets hope so anyway.

    Morning all.

  56. ha ha ha Ng… how are you?

    Kt, do you think JW will add the goals needed to his game in order to become a trequartista?

    Personally, I will choose Honda over Kroos, as Honda will make Stan and IG happy with the far east money coming in as well as his skill and set piece mastery…

  57. Morning Lewis thanks…

  58. :) Kt… I hold my hands up and say I forgot about the tactical awareness needed to play complicated formations… you make a very valid point I overlooked.

  59. What ever formation AW adopt to it seems we’re sticking with the squad we left off with last season. So far no new names, just promotions. Or are they still buying time…

  60. SYG, Emma any news/rumours on why Yennaris was dropped from the tour making rounds on twitter?

  61. I think jack can add goals to his game ts.he scored in the junior levels but he has to transfer that to the 1st team.time will tell i guess.he will also have to learn how to use his right peg too.

    on tactical flexibility thats also the reason why cesc has really struggled at barca.cesc’s game is all about freedom of expression to do what he likes on the pitch but at barca only messi is afforded such liberty.thats why cesc was at his best with us.even vicente del bosque realised this and at the confed cup he gave cesc a free role and at the euros he played as a false 9.he is no longer considered as a midfielder for club and country since he does not fit in rigid roles in midfield anymore.

    Barca are very fluid but the roles given to players are quite rigid in various formations which enables them to transition seamlessly since each player understands what he has to do in whatever formation.Cesc struggled with this and thats why despite his obvious talent he has never really shone for barca unless he is given licence to roam wherever he likes.

  62. Good Morning to the Lady of the House and all fellow Gooners in resudence.

    Ginge – A great post. I don’t know what you were worried about. It is truly food for thought. Unfortunately I have an appointment to grt my mother to this morning. So, I need to get some sleep. I will be interested in reading all the comments when I return.

    Have a great dGooners. Keep the Faith!

  63. Come on England…

    Afternoon all…

  64. That should be – Have a great day Gooners. My touch typing sucks. Later.

  65. Ts – that Merts shirt thing is very odd…

  66. Re: Yennaris – Not seen owt Ginge ….

  67. it seems thiago is going to bayern…MUFC fans are already blaming moyes :-)

    ts thats also the reason why cesc isn’t going to.replace xavi in my opinion.even AW played cesc in a free role for a reason.

  68. Thanks Cg… indeed just a thought.

    SYG.. nothing at all? Thanks btw

    Kt, Cesc has to make a decision for himself because with the WC next year, if Thiago and Deulofeu have good seasons he may find himself out of the squad… just a thought

  69. There you go Ginge.
    Why a decent striker isn’t a decent striker. We can’t give him away

  70. isco too ts…

  71. Yes… Cesc can ask for a loan move to us for a year…

  72. Syg… Bendtner need serious help…
    Rico… back from your visit… ;)

  73. as a football fanatic i must say i’ll be very keen to see how bayern line up next season.they can literally play any formation with the squad they have.

  74. Our no. 11 batsman goes ok :)

  75. Malaga gooner has gone missing… none of his predictions have come through yet :)

  76. Scott you are still up?

  77. And we have a first innings lead.
    Love it.

  78. Bloody oath Ginge.
    I never sleep……….
    I am in pre season training as well.
    We have struck a deal with a pub in Sydney to show all Arsenal games live.
    Word is there will be a few hundred fans for each game, and our own Arsenal beers will be the drink of the day :)

  79. Afternoon Gooners.
    Afternoon Rico.
    Interesting Post Ginge.

    Mertesaker to get the No.2 shirt maybe?

    So who is going into the No.4…???

    Not sure that they would move shirt numbers for Barry?!

    £43million for Saurez. Ha ha ha. You couldn’t make it up.
    Not sure I believe the £30million tbh…

    Where’s my Fiver Rico? ;-)

  80. Nice one Scott…

    try to get some sleep though… I have gone years without sleeping properly but last weekend… I hit the wall ;)

    I am off work trying to rest but can’t….

  81. Ts, l am, been given meds…

    Scott, he is wasted at no 11 – very impressive…

  82. Mr Ak… did you fly IG to the airport?

  83. Afternoon Kev, it’s being freed up for Cesc maybe ;)

    Lewandowski tipped to be our big signing :)

  84. Smoke and Mirrors Rico, it’s all a game of misinformation.

    Ginge, I had a job to the Airport yesterday, but she was an Indian business woman, not a Greek bullshiter. ;-)

  85. You will not see a more inept piece of captaincy and bowling than Cook and Finn showed for the past hour and a half. Shocking. Beefy called it embarrassing and he was spot on.

  86. We are 3/1 favourites to buy Alex McCarthy?

    new one?

  87. 1/4 odds on to buy Gareth Barry

  88. On that note, i am off for a kip guys.
    Have a great day everyone, and keep the faith.

  89. 2/1 faves for Geoffrey Kondogbia

  90. Evens for Reg Varney?

  91. Skybet have stopped taking bets on Blackie joining us…..

  92. What’s that Adam? Ressurection or playing for Arsenal?
    Still – more chance of those happening than us bidding £40M for Suarez ….

  93. Lee. I hope you mean Blakey? :)

  94. More chance of Lee meaning Suarez……

  95. Blakey indeed…i’m not with it today!

  96. I know Kev, I’m struggling to stay positive today..

    Adam, it was simply second rate attacking but credit where it’s deserved to the young guy

  97. Phew. No chance of Wenger sniffing around that one then…. On to Fellani ….

  98. Night Scott..

  99. Liverpool looking to Yilmaz as replacement for Luis “Louie Louie” Suarez

  100. Rico. We served him the runs on a plate and he accepted them. Cook just seems so dopey sometimes and Finn was pathetic. If we collapse in the second innings on this pitch then there is something seriously wrong in this England set-up. This is a very average Australian team but we are making them look good. FFS get stuck into them.

  101. They were probably sulking after not getting the stumping decision….

    Cook dopey, mmmmmm ;)

  102. So once Liverpool get him, Real can get Brother Luis and we can finally get Higuain….

  103. Off for an hour or two…..

  104. Gerv omitted from 24 man squad… interesting. Adam, SYG should be pleased

  105. Full travelling party
    Mikel Arteta
    Lukasz Fabianski
    Kieran Gibbs
    Olivier Giroud
    Carl Jenkinson
    Laurent Koscielny
    Per Mertesacker
    Ignasi Miquel
    Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain
    Lukas Podolski
    Aaron Ramsey
    Tomas Rosicky
    Bacary Sagna
    Wojciech Szczesny
    Theo Walcott
    Jack Wilshere
    Serge Gnabry
    Damian Martinez
    Kris Olsson
    Chuba Akpom
    Thomas Eisfeld
    Chuks Aneke
    Gedion Zelalem

  106. Gervinho has to be off …

    Thomas Vermaelen will miss the tour in order so he can receive treatment on a back injury, while Gervinho was not due to fly out due to sickness.

    Full travelling party

    Mikel Arteta
    Lukasz Fabianski
    Kieran Gibbs
    Olivier Giroud
    Carl Jenkinson
    Laurent Koscielny
    Per Mertesacker
    Ignasi Miquel
    Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain
    Lukas Podolski
    Aaron Ramsey
    Tomas Rosicky
    Bacary Sagna
    Wojciech Szczesny
    Theo Walcott
    Jack Wilshere
    Serge Gnabry
    Damian Martinez
    Kris Olsson
    Chuba Akpom
    Thomas Eisfeld
    Chuks Aneke
    Gedion Zelalem

  107. Opps, sorry Ts ;)

    Now I’m gone for an hour…

  108. No Chamakh either………….. Lets hope we can now finally get rid of all of the deadwood before the newbies join us…!

    Great post Ts, well done mate..!

    I did tell you all the other day about the number 4 shirt………….

    Scott is always wrong and no one ever listens to me

  109. afternoon all!
    Emirates Cup ticket prices, 25 £ ??? Isn’t very expensive?
    So, no news… Gervinho and Vermaelen miss Asia Tour.
    24 players in the Tour. With this squad, what wiil be our challenges?
    It will be not important integrate the eventual new signs in this Tour? (except of Sassoko, obviously)
    His just my opinion, but any new “important” sign, missing this Tour is the same of missing the most important of the pre-season period.
    Lady of the house:you must upgrade the column of “summer aproaches” ;-)

  110. Oh and no San”toss” either….. If the tour ends and Chamakh, Gerv, Santoss n Bendy are all gone it will have been a very successful trip..!
    I think new players must be there by the end of this month JM, thats when the real work starts..!

  111. Hi WATH, thanks…
    yes it seems gerv is going to Roma… but news of the dipers going after Yilmaz is surprising!

    JM… this is the leanest squad I have seen in recent times… at least the kids will get more opportunities

  112. Santos is on loan again…

  113. Is Martin Atkinson the 3rd umpire today?

  114. :D the cava is making you see things…

  115. Where’s big mouth Gower run & hid too?

  116. Squillaci weighing up his offers… as a french postman maybe :D

    After being released by Arsenal at the end of his contract, Frenchman Sebastien Squillaci has been talking to Varmartin.com and he hints that he has a number of offers which is not really surprising given that he is still 32 and has 21 caps with France under his belt.

  117. That Trott decision is an absolute farce.

  118. About his level some would say?

  119. Rico,

    I have just mailed you greatest conspiracy theory of all time. Let me know if you’re posting it. lol.

  120. :D SYG… so cruel… 4th division? Is that conference level?

  121. You got to read this… its hilarious

  122. Boo!! Hi, rico. You okay??

    Ginge, so much tictac about tactics. :P I got dizzy. :D Well done, you.

    Hello, S2S, SYG, and Adam. :)

  123. Howdy AGAG…………

  124. Hello again all….

    Boo to you agag, all is not so good :(

  125. one question:Just realised, Santi and Kosc will be suspended for our champ. League qualifying match ? So, whitout Vermalen, Diaby, etc, is not a good starting

  126. We will have all our new signings in by then JM ;)

  127. Still makes me laugh….

  128. Very good point JM.. its thread bare… but Sagna will play with the BFG if both are fit…

  129. Hi Agag… I didn’t see you sneak in…

    I thought you would be waiting for IG at Jakarta… :)

  130. Or Miquel Ts?

  131. Malaga gooner never stops :D :D He is always told… by a fly I guess..

    “lewandowski is the marquee signing.

    i am told everything has been agreed and the ball is in his court now, he told arsenal he will give them an answer by this time next week

    malaga gooner”

    He’s still at it! Incredible stuff


  132. Precisely Rico… preferably Williams but no CL experience… Sagna will be safe I think…

  133. Not seen that before Lee, its funny. He had to be drinking Peroni ;)

  134. We are doomed…

    The Spuds are the new power in North London…

  135. Its not me.

    malaga gooner

    Well malaga, if it is not you.

    you have inspired a generation.

    imagine the olympics. what a waste of money. this stuff happens for free.

    anyway. keep posting mate. your a gooner, so your posts add some life from downright mental. to maybe this one is spot on the truth.


    I cant stop laughing… what a fantasist…

  136. What is Portugese for, ‘We are doomed’…?

  137. Mg has copied that story Ts. Someone else wrote the same thing yesterday – I like to look and see what s***e the guy writes ;)

    Funny how he didn’t stay here long ….

  138. Never Ak….

    Williams is back on I read Ts ;)

  139. Estamos condenados

  140. I thought it was ‘Frazer’ Syg

  141. Wenger may use the Tour to take a close look at Miquel.
    If that kid is to have any future, then he has to show that he’s up for the challenge of the 1st team…

    Depending on how he does on Tour, may make up Wenger’s mind whether to follow up his enquiry on Williams or not?!

  142. Miguel has always been good at positioning and reading the game… his issues is that he has failed to bulk up. Against smaller mobile strikers he may be able to do a job but against the lumps… well that is a different preposition…

  143. Cheers SYG…

    What is Portugese for “Coming onto this blog, to be negative, makes my day complete”…?

  144. Kev, I still think TV could depart, so we may need Williams in any case…

  145. But Kos is hardly bulk Ts, he’s lean. ace and ability to read the game can make a great defender…

    Just a thought ;)

  146. true Rico… Kos was older and learnt quickly after 6 months…Miguel at his age should have taken some cretin or done som e weight lifting.. he’s been here 4 years now I think… make or break as Ak has said…

  147. But you have to be careful doing weights if the body is still growing surely?

    I have my own theory on all that but its boring and I could be accused of being racist. I’m not of course….

  148. I enjoy the odd dose of cretin myself. Very character building.

  149. :D rico… come on spill…

    Character building indeed…

  150. “Fico realizado, sempre que aqui alguém é pessimista”
    “Tenho dia feito, sempre que alguém vem para aqui de moral em baixo”
    “O meu dia só está completo, quando alguém encontro alguém desanimado e pessimista”…

  151. :lol: Adam, but for an ‘a’ eh….

    Nah Ts ;)

  152. Ginge, don’t be a Toad… ;-)

  153. All that for a few words JM ;)

  154. I feel for Vieira in that story as I have suffered from the same stigma my whole life. :)

  155. Vindo para este blog, para ser negativo, faz meu dia completo

  156. :lol: Adam – you old kipper

  157. Rico. Just call me knobby. All my friends do. :) – it has been my nickname since school.

  158. :) Adam, I won’t ask why. Maybe it’s your knees ….

  159. Finally England are in the lead…. By 2 runs :)

  160. Hey Knobby, has that £63million cheque arrived yet?

  161. Ak, I prefer lizard but since I am not posh like Cameron and Adam I may have to settle for a toad :D

    SYG… Wanyama was expecting to move to a ‘bigger’ club so he turned the saints down initially, when no other takers arrived he went back…

  162. Wanayma was waiting for Arsene Wenger to chuck his hat in the ring.
    Hopefully we are looking at much players than him. Fellani for one.

  163. That’s a good signing for Southampton…

  164. It’s on the way Kev. my friend the Nigerian Prince is hand delivering it himself. As soon as I comes I will get it cleared and your £5 million will come out of that. Would you like it in cash?
    Rico. Don’t be coy. :)

  165. Or are we really after Morgan Schneiderlin Syg…..?

  166. Don’t kid yourself Rico.
    The Scottish Premier (minus Rangers FC) is on par with our second tier … probably even worse…
    Look at the best striker in the SPL: Anthony Stokes. Averages a goal every other game and was recently man of the match in the 2013 Scottish cup final… He couldn’t cut it here….

  167. Me Adam? Never.. ;)

  168. Morgan Schneiderlin? What’s that – the name of a hand bag or a new pair of shoes?

  169. Adam, don’t know why but I always had you down as ‘Tripod’

  170. I thought he looked pretty handy for Celtic in the Champs league last season SYG, the question is can he hack it in the EPL, if he does he’ll be on the move again.

  171. We’ll see Syg ;)

  172. Micko. From you I take that as a great compliment. :)

  173. Morgan Schneiderlin has been linked to us for a while and with Southampton signing Wanyama, I wouldn’t be at all surprised….

  174. Isn’t a tripod something which helps things stand up Micko? ;)

  175. Rico. I wonder if Malaga Gooner has any inside info on that rumour

  176. A tripod offers rigid support Rico.

  177. I would imagine so Adam, Malaga is where all news breaks first…..

  178. A bit like Playtex then Adam ;)

    Off to eat now…

  179. Never seen him linked Rico ….. Well at least he’s played in the premier league … I suppose with Arsenal he’d win his first cap ….

  180. All this talk of tripods makes me want to go out and erect another concret post

  181. Rico. Not sure. I haven’t worn Playtex for years. Since I met Kev in fact. :)

  182. That’s it rico, the thingymebob with 3 legs !!!

    Got a sneaky feeling tsgh was a bit of a geek when it came to algebra in his youth, he was just showing off today.

  183. Syg since you hate stats so much I thought I would serve you with a bleacher report classic on Aaron… :o

    Do you know who won 90 percent of his tackles last season?

    Not Arturo Vidal (71).

    Could it be Morgan Schneiderlin? 74, try again.

    What about Maxime Gonalons? No, he had a 81 tackling percentage.

    Lars Bender? Same tackling percentage as Gonalons.

    It’s Ramsey who had a 90 percent chance of winning the ball every time he went for a tackle in league play.

    In a statistical evaluation of select players who made 60-65 tackles, Étienne Capoue, Gary Medel, Marouane Fellaini and Andrea Pirlo didn’t come close to Ramsey.

  184. Rico, knobby was down to his knees…!
    Evening Micko Prince of Guinness how’s work mate..? AK you paying Rico that fiver plus interest..?

  185. I’ve been telling everyone what a great player Ramsey is but with little success.

  186. Micko… did you receive my claim? You need to settle fast before my lawyer B-52 gets involved… he does not negotiate kindly… :D

    Unfortunately, I am a chartered engineer with the IET by day that is why my grammar is shite… ;)

    SYG… http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1700491-arsenal-fc-arsene-wengers-persistent-trust-in-aaron-ramsey-is-vindicated?

  187. Adam the breacher report and Here is the city post of Ramsey said written by Adam… you do not have to impress Rico anymore :P

  188. It’s a young man’s game Wath.

    rico, whatever you do, don’t try fobbing kev off with a cheque, that would be like waving a red rag at a bull.

  189. The most amazing news for me today is clubs are refusing to pay the wage demands of the worlds greatest striker… what the hell is wrong with them…? why will no one pay what Bendtner is worth…?

    Oh thats the problem, they are offering what he’s worth…….! Silly me..!

  190. TS. I fear my secret is out then. I am Hiram T Knobnosher the third of the Delaware Doggers.

  191. I am also Malaga Gooner.

  192. Now that is a name you do not want to be associated with especially if you patronise places with sharp knives and open flames…

    That name is legendary and wanted on America’s most wanted dumbest bloggers listed…

  193. I am guilty of crimes against banality. I confess all.

  194. rico, there are same equal sense of translactions.
    We are a very rich language

  195. That was Jake Micko…

  196. I am saying no more about Knobby Wath and all ;)

    On a serious note, did anyone watch the programme about footballers suicide the other night?

  197. no i missed it…
    was it good?

  198. Sad, but yes, very good….

  199. Remy… is he the new no.2 my sauces and sources tell me a deal was agreed between us and Remy 2 years ago and he will be revealed after his STi medical shortly…

    A wannabe Mg

  200. Did Cabaye and Lee Hendre feature?

  201. No, no so far – am still watching…

    The Gary Speed bit with his sister was really sad…

  202. So Gazidis is buying a bottle of Brandy??

  203. Bootleg Remy Martin from WATH’s loft/ shed…

  204. I love stats, Ginge. Really.

    I just don’t like stats when they are used to bull-up some useless lazy bum we’ve been overpaying and overplaying ..

  205. I watched the film “Heavenly Creatures” last night ….

    …True story of mid-50’s murder by two teenage girls in New Zealand … I was that intrigued I jumped onto the electoral roll and found out one of the murderers is now a recluse up in the Orkney Islands …

  206. Why does Denilson pop into my mind…..

  207. Ts, that’s slander…. no bootleg in my cellar merely stuff that’s fallen off a lorry..!
    I see the Chavs linked with Yilmaz now Ts…! have they been reading HH..?

  208. In yor Inbox, RICO

  209. tsgh – that was a good incisive post.

    I feel this is the season the OX will be moved centrally. We ‘ve got the best DM in Europe and that is Ramsey. Never realized it until tsGH brought the point and had to look at stats to confirmed it. He is heir to the arteta’s throne. It will be interesting to see how zalelem, olsson, gnabry, etc perform during the tour. Ryo should be making the grade this season and should seize this as an opportunity

  210. I’m done for the day gys/gals…

    Syg, if ok with you, I will tweak your article for the morning because of the Grenier news etc, unless you want to to make sure it’s right??

  211. Spooky Syg :) Thanks

  212. It’s been edited Rico. new post

  213. :d I did not say cellar… I am told the vintage one’s are in the cellar whilst the one’s shipped over from Ak’s Russian Mafia friends stay in the garage…

    Everyone reads HH… WATH… Rico has a good gig going… if Adam will say Gerv is a genius we could be winning Hollywood awards :o

    On a serious note I would not mind Schneiderlin at all. De rossi is available as Roma need some serious cash. No crime in dreaming…

  214. We’ve not been very successful with our Italians, Ginge…. Lupoli, Mannone … About as successful as our raids on Japan…

  215. Hi Emma, you will be barred by Adam from here if you say Ramsey is good :)

    Hope you are well? We are short of numbers and height though especially in CB positions and DM positions…

    Frimps starts training in 2 weeks… but I think we need an experienced head like Barry to alternate with MA08 in order to push on this season…

    Nite Rico…

  216. Very true Syg… but Lupoli had the talent but we chose B-52 over him and the rest is history

  217. Inamoto… what happened to him/

  218. SYg… since you love stats i will dust off my Eboue vs Cafu vs Neville stats for you if you like… :D

  219. No idea Ginge re: Inamoto…..

    Marca just reported that we have offered eur. 50M for Suarez ????? Part of an article re: Higuain and Contraeu

  220. The players seem to be flying off the shelf SYG… I don’t know much about the so called new Modric so I can’t feel disappointed…

  221. tsgh – Did you just say Barry, the one with a Gareth :). I pass

  222. Fckng Eboue lol …. Quick, Powerful and stupid. If he had Neville’s brain he would have been brilliant.

  223. Hey Emma we are odds on to sign Gareth Barry – 1/4

  224. The stats are 100 pages long… re Eboue lol

    Emma I take it you do not rate Gareth… I don’t blame you, he hardly goes out of the center circle during games…

  225. syg – Don’t believe the odds. We were odds on to sign fellaini, Caesar, Rooney, Higuain, suarez but still waiting.
    He is damn too slow, 32 and legs are gone

  226. We dont want another silvestre or squillaci

  227. :D Emma; what about man U’s Anderson

    we are running out of options though I think….

  228. tsgh – I pass. We ‘ve had our fair share of brazilians probably we are signing the wrong ones.

  229. What do you make of Rooney returning home… injured or not?

  230. A serious question here, do you lot not think for a season or two Barry could do a reasonable job for us as a squad player…?

  231. Just pulling your legs… Anderson will make Denilson and Santos look like Calamity James.

    He is the definition of deadwood

  232. It says hamstring and he might be out until beginning of season …. a lot of detail for a white lie ….

    Gervais is ill. End of
    Translated, that probably means he’s going back to Lille on loan ….

  233. WATH. Yes. In the short term.

  234. WATH… on the 2 or £3 million fee being reported he is worth it.

    I like Ginter and the saints lad but I think Barry has a bit of experience… AW could get a bit more mileage out of the dog…

    AW might make the press happy going to the WC too

  235. Ts, Hamstring my bum….. or rather Adams knobby…!

  236. emma says:
    July 11, 2013 at 8:27 pm

    Edu and Gilberto were great. But they were men as opposed to boys

    Denilson, Wellington, did we have a Paulo or Paulinho etc were/are all snotty nosed kids

  237. tsgh – Rooney sounds like a foul play. It reminds me of Cesc last days with arsenal

  238. tsgh – Moyes stated today he met Rooney 4 times, best shape in 5 years. Yet whenever i see him in photographs he looks miserable.
    Maybe Owen was right today – RVP is now the main man and Rooney does not like it.
    RVP was given extra time off for summer – New main Man.
    Rooney wants to be the focal point and as a Gooner he will be surrounded by the Brits.
    I think his turnaround so soon after touching down in Asia is signalling a transfer is on the cards and they do not want their asset to get injured. I trust it is to us………

  239. A11730, did you see Rooney’s foto with his Mrs at wimbledon… what happened to the hair transplant? he needs a refund. :)

    Indeed hamstring injury lasting more than 5 weeks sounds very fishing.

  240. Emma, sounds familiar the hammy but maybe more like an argument with Moyes and then the decision that he’s off..?
    Arsenal11730, i would love it if he’s coming to us and think he would thrive in an Arsenal shirt… I know very controversial but imagine him and Suarez…!?!?!

  241. Looks like the TV deal have kick start most EPL club sides. Gone are the days the smaller clubs are unable to afford a fee of £12m for a player. It will be difficult getting points from these smaller teams away from home this season

  242. Yao is definitely a gooner… he was in the training photos yesterday and he is now so ill he can’t travel…

  243. gooner= ‘goner’

  244. WATH… even Wooney only will make Robson quiet for a day..

  245. Ts, ill that he gonna be ill for a whole tour… laughable….! Lets hope he off and takes santoss, bendy n chamakh with him…!
    as you rightly said earlier Ts, robson is a gimp..!

  246. Rooney, Suarez, Hig and Fallaini… then CF4. Well, life is but a dream. We just have to row the boat down the stream. :-)

  247. Swansea have really pushed the boat out… the chariman has to be careful because unfortunately Laudrup as a player is very different to the manger…spending so much soes not necessarily guarantee success… the swans have UEFa cup too. NUFC last season comes to mind

  248. Arsenal11730 – Moyes has a funny way of making up excuses. Pursering giving extra 2wks off b/s he was involved in a friendly in china and the dummy forgot England had a friendly in brazil

  249. SYG says he has the stats to demonstrate Gerv is as good as Hazard :-P

  250. That’s a spiky front two WATH – Rooney and Suarez

  251. tsgh – I think they bought well. Bony will give them another dimension in attack. Michu could play behind him

  252. Frankfurts website

    No Bendtner Transfer

    Eintracht‬ Frankfurt will not pursue the transfer of Danish striker Nicklas ‪Bendtner‬ of Arsenal FC. Despite very positive efforts of all parties involved the club decided against the transfers after weighing up all pros and cons.

    SGE‬ Sporting Director Bruno Hübner: “We would like to thank ‪Arsenal‬ manager Arsene Wenger especially for the positive negotiations and good collaboration. All three parties showed great willingness to make it happen, but after all it did not come together in the end.”

  253. Maybe his agents fees were too unreasonable.

    I agree Emma, but Laudrups 2nd season fall has always been due to him overhauling a decent team he takes over too quickly…

    all the players he bought would want first 11 opportunities..

  254. If mancs are suddenly after Jovetic does that not look like bye bye Rooney..?

  255. I just feel like taking Bendtner to the gallo and strung his neck. He is going to end up crying like Arshavin at the end of the season when his contract expires. Another loan on the card then. Gervinho is off. I saw on an italians website that Roma are preparing a second bid after the first was rejected. Flamengo are interested in Andre Santos. Well chamack is just chamack, clear indication he should start looking for a club as he was left out of the asian tour party. Park Sun has gone AWOL

  256. Spikey and pure quality SY…..

  257. Hasn’t Park Sun been released Emma, that was mentioned a week or so back…!

  258. Gervinho (Gervais Lombe Yao Kouassi) v Eden Hazard
    The STATS don’t lie

    At 5’10 Gervais is 3″ taller than Hazard
    At 26, Gervais is 4 years older than Hazard
    27 is Gervais number which is 10 places higher than Hazard’s
    Professionally Gervais has played for 4 clubs while Hazard has only managed two
    Gervais has 45 caps which is seven more than Hazard
    Professionally he has played 30 games more than Hazard
    At £10.8M, Gervais is better value for money than Hazard who was bought for £13.2M more.
    Gervais has longer hair than Hazard.
    Gervais has a larger forehead than Hazard.

  259. Striker Park Chu-young Starts Army Boot Camp
    Arsenal striker Park Chu-young entered an Army boot camp in Nonsan on Thursday for a month of military training.

    Park will return to Arsenal in the U.K. Premier League after completing boot camp, said Kim Dong-ho of Park’s management agency DH Sports.

    Park was exempted from military service after the Korean squad won the bronze medal in the London Summer Olympics last year but is still required to undergo four weeks of basic training and play or coach football in Korea for 34 months.

    There was an outcry in March 2012, when it was revealed that Park had obtained a 10-year residence permit in Monaco when he played for the local club. That would have allowed him to put off his duties until 2022, when he will be 37 and officially too old to join the army.

  260. The word is Arsenal will let him go Emma…! It was written into the accounts last year that his fee and contract would be written off..!

  261. Is that all WATH :D

    You left out the cul-de-sac bit…

  262. That’s all Ts am not greedy lol

  263. Night gents and ladies…

  264. Nite Ts, take it easy mate..!

  265. It crosses your heart with stretch Adam.
    It also lifts and separates.

    The Prince of Guiness, yep Wath, I liked that one…

    JM, are you trying to batter me with words?
    You crazy Port… ;-)

    Night Gooners, and Mick…

  266. Hi all,
    If Wenger is really in for Fab, wouldn’t it be for free as they still owe money to Arsenal for Fab and Song?

  267. Morning all…..

  268. Just figures on the balance sheet though Bradster. Comes out of the asset column so in effect is a payment.

  269. Morning Housers….

  270. Too hot for a yellow coat ;)

  271. Mr Fairbrother…….

  272. Wasn’t he Are you being served ;)

  273. New post up now…

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