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Good news on Vermaelen. We don’t need a striker, do we??

Morning all.

First up a bit of gossip from the newspapers surrounding our captain. Barcelona apparently are now interested in him and are ready to offer £16 million. If and it’s a big if it’s true then I’d snap their hands off and then go big and bold and sign a central defender who’s ready to push both Kos and Merts all the way for a place in the starting eleven because for a while now, Thomas hasn’t truly done that. Also, that stops any idea of him going to Man Utd, surely the player would prefer Spain?

Onto today’s post – the first of many I hope from Tai Emeka Obasi. I don’t agree with us not needing further signings, but Highbury House is a place where everyone has a right for their view to be expressed.

Arsenal  – The Oliver Twist In All Of Us

For every three Chelsea fans you see in Nigeria, two were Arsenal fans as after years of suffering and moaning season after season, many Arsenal fans migrated and the choice was easy as Chelsea had their own, John Obi Mikel in their ranks.

But supporting Arsenal in Nigeria within those nine agony years they christened ‘trophyless’ was far worse than a snail living in a colony of ants. We endured taunts after taunts, trying daily, and really hard, to avoid fisticuffs.

They cajoled that Arsenal was only a selling club, a football academy that fed the rest of Europe. When they read a big player linked to Arsenal, they laughed in our faces. We endured torture equivalent to what Devil could offer in hell. Man Utd fans were not left out in making jests of us either. Tough times!

When we eventually won the FA Cup we all heaved that big sigh and started talking tough that Arsenal’s ‘academy’ years were over. And to our utmost glee, Alexis Sanchez was soon signed as was Bacary Sagna’s replacement.

However, dear Gunners sing song these days is more signings.

Everywhere you turn to is – we need a striker, most also insist that we need a defensive midfielder and even if Thomas Vermaelen stays, many believe we still need a centre back.

It suddenly dawned on me that football fans are same from club to club. Every one of them wants world best at their various clubs. Dear Arsenal fans are not different. We’re all Oliver Twists.

Most Arsenal fans were calling for Arsene Wenger to add a back up to Giroud but Le Prof did more than that by grabbing a potential 20 goals + a season, who is not only a back-up but can also play with Giroud in his favoured 4-3-3 formation. Sanchez is the nearest to the calibre of striker Thierry Henry was since the ‘Igwe’s’ departure. One may argue about Robin Van Persie but Sanchez is more versatile and much faster and while Henry built his pedigree at the club, Sanchez arrived with awesome credentials.

So, in the striking department, do we actually need another signing?

Having Wenger as your football manager means having to learn the economics of everything at every turn. A careful appraisal would tend to suggest Le Prof has done an astute deal here. For a team that sticks religiously to 4-3-3 and one that’s been built on Oliver Giroud as striker who works for the general good of the team rather than personal glory, changing guard, much as it may courier an improvement, may mean changing orientation.

Despite the fact that Arsene hardly does change his orientation, experts in the field equally kick against it. So, rightly, Wenger sticks to Giroud for his hold up play, collecting Wojciech Szczesny’s up field kicks, bringing his team mates into play, as well as coming back to help defend corners and set pieces. Getting a player, who’d replicate all these and still score more goals than Giroud may be a tough ask.

Then if Giroud gets injured, suspended or needs rest, there is Sanchez, an exceptional player who is at home anywhere in the attacking three. He’s very fast, skilful, tenacious and an improvement on Giroud in finishing. He’s definitely a 20-goals-a-season potential. Whatever defending and holding up attributes of Giroud one may miss in his absence, Sanchez offers in more directness, trickery and precision.

Should Sanchez, for whatever reason, not cover for Giroud, there is Yaya Sanogo. Agreed, Sanogo is raw and not yet one to be heavily relied on but he is only a back-up and Giroud is not known for long layoffs. Besides, Sanogo showed in games against Bayern Munich, Liverpool and Hull City at Wembley that he was not just an ordinary spare. There were assured attributes of a great centre forward. He may not have scored a goal yet but I believe Gunners fans should be happy for that, for if Sanogo had added about five goals to those efforts as duly deserved, I wouldn’t bet Sanchez would have arrived.

Joel Campbell at 22 has shown signs of a real deal. UCL aside, those five matches at the World Cup led insights into what the Costa Rican could bring to the plate and one wouldn’t really know until he is given a chance, which for good measure, the young striker duly deserves.

Chuba Akpom, if for anything, deserves a chance as he’s Arsenal bred and a lot of pride goes into having to nurture a footballer from a club’s academy to stardom. Akpom deserves the chance.

So, why would Wenger and Arsenal need another striker with all these options? Especially when Theo Walcott, Lukas Podolski, Santi Carzola are still playing for the club and are potent scoring outlets whenever within range.

If we study our top 5 or 6 rivals, I do not believe any other side in EPL offer more attacking threat than Arsenal. What Arsenal needs, is a defensive solidity that will protect the attack and keep things tight, so that score lines like 6-0, 6-3, 5-1, 3-0’s become a distant memory.

Who says beefing up a team is a season’s process?

Wenger has added a 20-goal threat to an attack that managed without Walcott and Ramsey for most of last term, to win the FA Cup and miss the title by seven points.

If you ask me a 100 times, I’d say get a very strong defensive midfielder, retain or replace Vermaelen and we’re done.

Written by Tai Emeka Obasi



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374 comments on “Good news on Vermaelen. We don’t need a striker, do we??

  1. from last post…


    It was difficult for me because we had changed league the football was so quick, being a defender/CDM(maybe Arsenal could offer me a contract lol) I was more physical and a ball winner.The games in the new league often were so intense I struggled with the speed. I have a cousin and younger brothers currently with Nottingham Forest youth and like you say, they’re great technical wise it’s hard to believe they’re only 7 and 10 but they’re 100 times the footballer I was at that age. Physically they’re a lacking compared to their team mates, fortunately they’ll grow. I’d like to try my hand at coaching a youth team one day.


    Where you from? hehe

    Off to read the post :)

  2. Morning all, we need a WC striker and DM, arsenal is a big club not a corner store, the days of square pegs in round holes is over.

  3. Morning Nickie, ask them to ask Henri why he left us.. ;)

    Morning all.

    Thanks for today’s post Tai, really enjoyed reading it, although I totally disagree re the striker situation but you knew I would.. ;)

    Also, I don’t see Sanchez to be ‘cover’ for Giroud. Sanchez will be one of the first names on the team sheet imo and the reason I believe we need another striker is we need one with pace and one who can bury his chances.

    Neither JC or Sanogo are that player imo…

  4. Ops there goes my reputation as itk should have taken in to account the whole of Arsenal are in USA. :?

  5. Nice post Emeka…I will still buy a quality striker if am AW..which part of igbo land are you from

  6. Another wordsmith? A very good post Tai. First of many I hope too…

    Nickie. You say you live in Greenford?

  7. Agree Gdna, as minimum…

  8. Gj. you were might to be wrking night last night.. did you call in sick? :P You must have because no signings…. :-)

  9. Nickie. Dunno if you missed my last post but I come from Highbury but live in Wanstead. I am always down Queens Road way though.

  10. Nice post TAI… But the striker bit i see diffrently. Any long term injury to Giroud and we are back to square one as i doubt Poldi, Sanogo and Campbell can fill in for a long period of time.
    By the way Housers IGWE=KING. That’s what Thiery Henry is called around this parts

  11. Thanks Jeff, I did wonder but knew it would be explained… :)

  12. lol not sure they’ve got them sort of connections Rico! I’d be worried if Henri was spending time with my younger brothers haha….

    Thanks for that read Tai.

    It will be a never ending debate. The moment RVP left we seemed light up front. I change my mind every day on whether we need a new striker or don’t. Trouble is, I like Giroud and wouldn’t want him displace…If we were to sign a striker that wouldn’t displace him would he be any better than a JC or a Sanchez taking the reins upfront for a game or 2? I doubt it…so I edge towards not needing a new striker.

  13. I mostly agree with this. More attacking threat shouldn’t be top of the shopping list. We do desperately need a proper defensive midfielder. Arteta and Flamini do the job, but we need world class there. TV needs to be retained, or replaced – and 4th CB added to the squad.

  14. Good post Tai, I disagree re the striker I definitely think we need an out and out goal scorer! I would of taken Remy…..
    TV to barca, what about a deal to get that little Argentinian fella??

  15. Tai. re how we finished last season… I bet that is how Aw is looking at it… but last season was mixed because our rivals were poor imho..

    But as I have noted and said a few occasions now; we do not normally play well after international tournaments… maybe this time will be different because none of our so called stars were actually starters for their countries apart from Ozil and AS…

    BUT, the last time AW and fans looked at our season like that in 2007-2008 when we finished third… and attributed the final weekscollapse to Eduardo’s injury and Gallas tantrums we went way back in 2008/09 season..

    In 2007 we finished 4 points behind the winners and lost Hleb who most fans did not rate.

    The following season 2008/2009 we finished 18 points behind Yanited…
    just a thought.

  16. Guys.

    Can we keep away from asking/telling where we live please, just in case some nutter is reading and you just don’t know who is out there on the internet…

  17. Ts, can you check your mail please…

  18. Rico, 10:48…taken note of

  19. Great posf Tai. I share your concerns about the defence. We need another CB. 2 if TV leaves. With Per missing the start of the season we could be out of the UCL before it starts! Also tbe GK situation is puzzling. If we really signing Ospina and Casillas as we are led to believe, does t mean the Chez rumours of him being trouble are true?

  20. Just responded Rico…

    I responded on previous page… ;)

  21. Lee – so would I re Remy, and definitely like the idea of the little Argentinian…

  22. I live on the moon!

  23. A joy to read Tai, Im with you all the way with a DM being highest priority, and if Verm goes then CB is a must. (We all know we need a keeper too, its a bit unclear whether Ospina has more or less been signed already). But that total outlay shouldnt mean we can’t add a striker too. Buying a striker doesnt mean we dont get a DM for instance.

    In my striker analysis, I somehow overlooked Roberto Firmino. The Metro says we made a bid, I doubt it. But he would be a great striking addition, dribbles alot, strikes well, great stats and is young. I think Sanogo really needs to go out on loan, prove himself and get some confidence. Remember, we are trying to win the premiership here, and with an injury to Giroud Im not about to start counting on Sanogo to lead the line. We are not even sure if Wenger will retain Campbell – no news at all on that – and he’s never actually played for us.



  24. Tsgh
    I was working but I am blaming the fact that Arsenal are all in the USA.
    I was planning to take my holidays by visiting all these posters home towns and take advantage of free accommodation

  25. Oops, two links and Im in the Mod bin Rico!

  26. Work calls take care I’ll catch up later.

  27. And regarding the striker situation,imo..sanago should be sent on loan and hopefully that’s why he did not went to the tour..balo is still there for grabs and unlike Rico I rate cavani so so much,the best complete cf imho..but a monster if DM should be the priority…..

    Morning All

  28. Mascherano? Thought he was excellent in the WC but he’s 30yrs old I think.

  29. Sorry Rico. Won’t happen again

  30. Space would be more appropriate Lee, you and Adam could be neighbours… ;)

  31. No apology needed Nickie, honest. Just wouldn’t want you or anyone else to be stalked by some nutter… ;)

  32. 8 million pounds plus Joel Campbell for Balotelli??….I’d strike that deal and get a DM preferrably Lars Bender or Schneidrelin plus a GK albeit I wouldnt go for Casillas IMO…. goodmorning house, mrning lady Rico

  33. Go steady Joe, you might get your signing today, rumour is Ospina will be announced…

  34. Thanks, Rico, all,

    First, let me appreciate being published here. Unless Arsene Wenger himself sets up a website with the likes f TH14, PV4, DB10 et al contributing, I don’t think there’s any higher pedestal than HH in discussing passionate things about Arsenal. So getting published here is a great honour which I feel humbled grasping today.

    Thanks again for finding my article worthy, Rico.

  35. Bj, I can’t see us getting both keepers, if we do though, Ches is a gonner…. imo of course..

  36. Great post…..brilliant, Tai….
    Nickie, watching 7-8 year olds do step overs better than plenty of pros puts things into perspective…….I know it makes me realise how crap I was as a player lol.

  37. Are you saying that Adam and I are in “Outer Space?”

  38. Oh don’t worry about me…I was hoping to do the stalking…haha just kidding. Thanks for looking out for our well being :)

  39. Not picking on anyone and no disrespect to any one…

    Who saw Lars play more than 3 times last season?

  40. lol! Adam so so true.

  41. Scott… did you see my post on previous page

  42. Bless you Tai, kind words and high praise indeed but it’s me thanking you today….

  43. Something like that Lee, just got the words the wrong way round… ;)

  44. Rico, I knew you wouldn’t buy my sale…I already tested the water and knew how deep. I’m waiting for Adam to kick me in the arse!

    Still, Rico…I wasn’t really calling AS17 a Giroud back up…far from it, I meant, SH17 can take the striking role once OG12 is not there before thinking of Sanogo, who should be third choice!

    Ts, yeah the secret of progressing from last season is making sure you don’t lose any important player not necessarily in buying new ones. Our last season is a perfect example!

  45. 10.54 Joe :)

  46. Ts..I did and I agreed that he was so poor especially against manyoo but you craved for him I think in the past two seasons..now my question is,why don’t you rate him again, is it coz he had a poor season which almost every players experience …I for one would take Lars or Morgan or khedira or any good DM in no particular order

  47. Ts… I’ve only watched the bloke play twice in my entire life and one of them was last season. Not better than what we have at the moment but many people on the net rate him highly so….

  48. Morning Tiz..

    Adam will oblige soon I am sure Tai. ;)

    I see re Sanchez, but as you know, I’d really rather we signed someone else to rotate/rest/replace Giroud – leaving Sanchez to do what Sanchez does best.

    Sanogo on loan hopefully, get him to a club who will play him every week so he’ll sharpen up.

  49. Ts… I’ve only watched the bloke play twice in my entire life and one of them was last season. Not better than what we have at the moment but many people on the net rate him highly so….
    I’d love Sven personally but also don’t see him as what we need

  50. That is a great picture you have painted Tai. A good Wordsmith I must say. But I am still mixed regarding Campbell and Sanogo. As you said I want what is best for the club regarding players.

    Nickie if I were you I would begin now regarding coaching. you are still young and if you mix with the right people your way can only be up. But remember…….make boys the subject of your coaching not the object of your ambitions. Do that and besides playing for you, you will have them eating out of your hand.

    Try the Scottish FA for courses. They have good courses and a good set up. Plus you get to live there at Inverclyde for a whole week. The experience is a wonderful one. I got mine over there and I can assure you that I enjoyed myself immensely.

  51. Still in the Mod bin, so Ill repost:

    A joy to read Tai, Im with you all the way with a DM being highest priority, and if Verm goes then CB is a must. (We all know we need a keeper too, its a bit unclear whether Ospina has more or less been signed already). But that total outlay shouldnt mean we can’t add a striker too. Buying a striker doesnt mean we dont get a DM for instance.

    In my striker analysis, I somehow overlooked Roberto Firmino. The Metro says we made a bid for 8m, I doubt it. But he would be a great striking addition, dribbles alot, strikes well, great stats and is young. I think Sanogo really needs to go out on loan, prove himself and get some confidence. Remember, we are trying to win the premiership here, and with an injury to Giroud Im not about to start counting on Sanogo to lead the line. We are not even sure if Wenger will retain Campbell – no news at all on that – and he’s never actually played for us.


  52. roger, sorry about the moderation, darn wordpress…

    I wouldn’t be at all surprised to see JC elsewhere next season…

  53. Just to say Rico. If you are ever short of a post, I have something I wrote a while back which is a spoof on something they used to do in the club programme where an ex player would pick his best ever Arsenal team and give his reasons. I did the opposite and picked my worst team from almost 50 years of watching. You are welcome to use it anytime as I am sure it will spark some debate!!

  54. Still with Ts,

    Right from that 2007/08 season upwards we’ve been losing important players every season. For in stance, Flamini was awesome that season…but he left, after Wenger had sent Giberto to Turkey just because of Flamini…and (the one that came from Chelsea, remind me, Ts) had impatiently left for Portsmouth. Wenger had to play Denison and Song…invented the 4-3-3, just to make up for Flamini’s absence. Why wouldn’t we drop? And so on.

  55. Thanks a lot Dev,

    I’ll take your advice and have a look at those courses :)

  56. Kc.. If you recall last summer I was calling for him because I thought he had not progressed and maybe needed a change… I was against the £19m bid and thought Voller would regret not taking that cash or that we were lucky it was not accepted.

    Last summer I was also calling for Morgan too when every pro thought Fellaini was our answer to the DM role…

    In my non- professional judgement; I have always believed that if we were looking for a DM in the traditional sense then Sven is the one we should be going for. He can play RB, and CB to a degree; however if we wanted to build a team around JW then maybe Lars was better as he was a poor man’s Ramsey/Khedira if you liked…

    Last summer I said that Ramsey was the best tackler in the league and so if he was idea for the DM… however, last season he became too attacking minded for my liking…

    Lars offers loads of running; not enough goals…

    I still submit there is no way L.Bender is better than Arteta or even Flamini who I think is very over rated by our fans btw…

  57. Tai. Lassana Diarra kept out Khedira most time in RM squad.. just a thought.

  58. Ts

    Flamini does the ugly job a lot of our players shy away from. He’s not pretty or even a great player but he gets the team going. He’s passionate and give us that extra fire. Even if he doesn’t play I believe he’s a good character to have around the dressing room.

    I feel we need a really intimidating CDM. Both the Benders wouldn’t intimidate me.

    I’ll be honest and say I was one of the gooners craving Felliani. He is one we have dodged the bullet with and made me take a step back and analyse players in a new way.

    For me completely on a defensive and CDM basis (realistic wise) the club should be in for Schniederlin.

    In regards to Ramsey, we saw a great attacking season from him. He’s young and if Wenger can get a balance with Ramsey in his attacking and defensive play we have a different monster on our hands. He certainly has the engine and power to do it.

  59. Joy.. exactly… I have a very good friend with over 20k followers on twitter a true gooner… he talks a lot of shite that loads of fans believe but he admits to me and I know for a fact he watches no one else but AFC as he goes to almost all away games…

    The only time he watches any team is when its the El clasico or a UCL game…

    re Lars cleverley ran rings around him..
    to be far to Lars he and his brother have had an injury plagued season…

    But as I have always said they have this twin thing going on to much…
    Do you know they scored on the same day within 10 minutes last season?

    When one gets carded the other gets carded that day or the next match,…

  60. Well, everybody seems sold on Sanogo going on loan. I wouldn’t send him on loan. What if he does a Ramsey this season? There’s something in Sanogo, something positive, believe me …and he’s ready for Arsenal this season! But then if Wenger decides to send him on lone, the we need a striker ASAP!

  61. Great post Emeka. Proud to see a fellow Igbo boy writing about Arsenal. I blog about Arsenal too.

    About your article, I fully agree with you that we don’t need another striker but we need to bolster our defensive options to give the team the right balance.

    What are your thoughts on Santi Cazorla’s recent speculation of a move away from North London?


  62. Bj, I would love that article please…

  63. Sanogo is young but everytime I see him I can’t help but think Bambi on ice. He’s finishing for a striker is terrible and his decision making is poor. He impresses me most when he drops deep to get involved with link up play which is all well and good but if you’re a striker that can’t finish it’s very worrying.

  64. Nickie. Flamini imho is a poor player tactically for his age considering how he flaps his hands around for the cameras…

    Folks on here disagreed with me when I said he play acted for camera… and he was at fault for our goal against BM

    Lee Dixon and Neville later said the same thing on TV several times…

    There were goals we conceded that if he actually did his job we wont have conceded… instead he tries to tell people what to do when in the heat of things no one can really hear imho… as it appeared they ignored him anyways..

    before Flamini even played for us when Arteta was injured i said Arteta and Flamini wont work well together and that Arteta will still be our no.1 DM even though at that time we were winning games…

    Flamini got found out when Ramsey got injured…

    Ask yourself why Flamini does not feature in the top 20 tacklers in the league even though he got red carded and got over 12 yellows?

  65. Did anyone find out why Sanogo didn’t travel to the US?

  66. Ts, that old ‘I said I said’ is creeping back in again…

    Don’t forget, it’s just a view we all have, none is factual, not even if Neville and Dixon says something…..

    Mine personally is that Arteta is too old now to be playing week in week out and the role he was asked to play needs to be filled with someone who is a specialist – not a make do….

  67. Nickie, youre dead right on Schneiderlin – last two seasons the PL he’s made the most tackles and inceptions combined. PL experience, proven. Defensive metal. Can pass a ball. Young enough for a big future, old enough for experience. etc etc. This is a deal I would’ve made weeks ago. I wouldnt blink at laying 20m on this one.

  68. You’re right, the Bayern game wasn’t his best but we were down to 10 men. He plays like he cares and works hard…I like that in a player. He does flap his arms around too much almost like Giroud flicks his wrist when he goes down lol

    It felt like Flamini gave us a stability when we were on our great run up towards Xmas. Flamini came out Arteta was over played and we lost points.

    I can’t answer your last question lol. Maybe he psychologically gets the edge on his opponents by clattering them. They feel intimidated, leading them to not have a great game. Flamini wins…I don’t know hehe

  69. Nickie. fergie won titles without an intimidating DM in Carrick.

    After Butt and Keano retired, fergie attempted with djemba djemba and it failed miserably… after that he never went back for a proper DM and he still won the UCL.

    The answer imho is that there were no passengers in Fergie’s squads. Even Fat Wooney did what he had to do…

    No pun intended btw; I think we AFC fans have been indoctrinated by AW believing we just need defenders and DM to defend… it never works…

    Even Messi defends for Barca…

  70. Nickie Bambi on ice! Lol, I couldnt put my finger on it!

  71. Rico – Wenger said in a press conference (light heartedly) he hoped Henry would play a half for us. Not sure if he was mucking about or not.

    Great chance for Akpom though

  72. Then let me ask…who would readily swap Sanchez for Costa? Or Aguero? Or RVP? Or Sturridge? Or(don’t chuckle) Soldado?

  73. Rico. I am not saying i am right.Just implying I am consistent in my views…

  74. Nickie, I saw that just now on Sky, maybe that’s why Sanogo didn’t travel then… ;)

    Ts, I’ll let you off this time then… lol

  75. I wouldn’t swap Sanchez for any player, but I’d do the right thing and make sure there’s a top quality striker ahead of him.

    Mind you, I would have done that when Ozil signed….

  76. I agree Roger…

    and last season he also played box to box like Ramsey but without the goals…

    Wanyama played the holding role most times except against the big games…

    Roger, do you recall we were linked to Morgan when he was leaving Stratsborg (spelling) in 2008?

  77. cheers lady. ;)

  78. True Ts…

    Defending starts from the top, which is a great trait of Girouds.

    For Arsenal, having Flamini in the team up to Xmas did more good than not imo. Flamini helped the players around him flourish. Even though he’s not a great player he probably made his team mates feel more comfortable knowing they had some guy who was going to batter the opponents lol

  79. hi Rico tai dev Bob and all…..nice post tai it’s just unfortunate that I would have to disagree with you as I enjoyed reading it…..I think we need a proper cf expecting Sanchez to play as a lone cf in his first season would be dumb IMO ……thanks for the read

  80. Thanks everyone…seems I’d be getting accolades all day. I’m humbled!

    Yeah, enigma, I remember you and read you always…don’t think Carzola stuff is real. Wenger didn’t re-sign Fabregas because we have Carzola … Caezola recently said he was staying…Arsenal used him to promo new Puma kits…then why would we suddenly sell him? For the money? We’rre no longer poor! So, forget that , my bros and sleep pretty. It’s all paper stuff that’ll soon go quiet.

  81. Really? Interesting didnt know we were linked with Morgan in the early days…
    I have no problem with Flamini in the squad, end of discussion for me. Of course Im not saying he should make the starting 11 of a fit team…

  82. We talk about a striker. Who is there? readily available, realistic and would be happy to rotate with Giroud up top? Bearing in mind our favourite formation is 1 up top. Who has the qualities to be able to pull that role off? Hernandez can’t, Cavani too expensive, Balotelli nightmare, Remy gone, Benzema no chance…Bony?

  83. Hope so Tai, I agree, and personally Im a fan of Santi :)

  84. Nice one from a brother..am xo proud of 9ja gunners.
    Oliver Twist?,RMadrid comes to mind. I’m with Tai on the ‘no striker signing’,but open to the Mario-Joel swap. I believe Theo and Sanchez can deliver a combined 45goals..lemme act like the rest of us by not mentioning the German Prince.

  85. Michu…He had qualities, loan deal to Napoli, we should have had a little punt there.

  86. Of course he did Nickie. I like Flamini actually for his grit but he needs players around him with tactical awareness imho…

    when he signed he made big noise about how Serie A has made him develop tactically but.. I am not sure he has…

    Flamini will be very average if he didn’t have the engine he had…

    He is still the 3rd fittest in the squad.. at least based on last summers tests…

    My only beef maybe is when commentators say that Flamini makes us stronger as he wins tackles whilst Arteta does not win tackles.

    The type of misinformation that section of fans ran with which is very untrue…

    In terms of distance covered both Arteta and Flamster cover similar distances…

    Regarding tackles Arteta is amongst top 5 in the EPl even ahead of fernandinho…

    The only area Flamster edges Arteta is in interceptions as he has more acceleration and so can recover whilst Arteta once he misses a tackle is often left behind…

  87. Yup Bony is decent and powerful – not a bad option, but wont be so cheap either. I was linking earlier to Roberto Firmino … I realise these are not glamour signings, but reasonable deals on a budget…

  88. Tai… There is something in Sanogo but he is like a rough diamond. His polishing will take time like Drogba and time is not our friend at the moment. If he stays and misses a one on one versus the Chavs late on to give us the win… He will by slaughtered by everyone. Not every player can pull a Ramsey. Methinks he will head out on loan with Giroud, New striker and Poldi covering the CF role.

  89. Spot on Joy re Yaya…

  90. Hi snaparse…

    Bony would do me, as would Remy but we clearly didn’t want him for some reason…

    Bony would cost big bucks I suspect, think Swansea have suggested £20 million…

  91. Sanogo has potenial. The way he straight up bullied the liverpool CBs in the FA cup showed that. His lack of finishing and poor decisions are down to nerves, he’ll grow out of that in no time.

    I think he’s like Adebayor, just less of a bellend.

  92. Agree re Sanogo Jeff…

  93. Arteta really isn’t given enough credit for his defensive work.

    Agree on Flamini tactically.

  94. Afternoon All

    Afternoon Rico…

    Tai, that was a very thoughtful, intelligent and well written post, well done.

    The first of many I hope, really enjoyed reading it.
    You made some excellent points…

    Still think that a Septembet 1st, last ditch offer, for Balotelli is a possibility…

  95. We know Wath is Bony’s agent… ;)

  96. Balo’ indeed Kev…

  97. Snap,

    …and as per not agreeing…I knew you wouldn’t too. However, things about Arsenal revolve around Wenger. Who wouldn’t want Ronaldo or Messi in our ranks? Le Prof already said Sanchez can play any where up front, play with or for Giroud…which is what the Chilean brings to the plate…

    But hearing Wenger say that and still expecting another striker means setting one’s self up for a heartbreak. Not me!

  98. seems cavani wants out of psg…..Wenger has always been a fan….cavani or balotelli anyone?

  99. Its lovely to read a post from a fellow Nigerian,for those who don’t know what “Igwe” means,it the king…….Thierry was our one true Monarch,still is.

  100. Snap. I posted yesterday that Cavani’s agent was in apparently london…

    apparently he met Mariana so…

    He has ignored VG at Yanited…

    Indeed Aw was interested before he scored 45 goals in Naples and the clause was inserted…

  101. hi ts…….are you going to the states?…

  102. Btw, I live in La La Land… :-P

  103. I’ll take Balotelli. £14 million is a bargain, I think he needs some love, AW could calm him down.

  104. no buddy… Tv is safer. :P

    are you buddy?

  105. I’m not so sure he would want to be second choice to Costa IMO as he is the better player anyways I hope Wenger still think highly of him as I like him great committed player always works his socks off for the team and that is an attitude you can’t buy I know you don’t rate him ts Rico too but he just needs somewhere he can be valued and be the focal point in attack and he will flourish trust me

  106. no sir I didn’t plan to but I hope to enjoy it at home as if I was there Lol……..keep an eye on bellerin if he plays I like him a lot

  107. Snap. I rate Cavani but he is not value for money that is all…

  108. I don’t think he is worth over £25m especially considering his age ;)

  109. Will you take Lavezzi if he became available?

    Pastore too?

    I know Sth American and all…

  110. Afternoon Kev, you and Lee both think that re Mario

  111. Kev…are you neigbours with Bendtner?

  112. Yes and yes how does Lavezzi play as CF….can he?

  113. He normally plays on the rhs of Zlatan. rotating with Pastore. from the few Psg gaes I saw last season…

    A Tevez type if you like…

  114. Too many ring pulls Kev… sends me to la la land too… ;)

  115. also Moura…

    Snap will know more..

  116. I would pay 25m for Cavani too, maybe stretching to 30m if I felt rich that day. But not more.

  117. Thanks, Kev…that’s mind-blowing!

    My fear, and a very big one at that, is Wenger may end up signing a player, like Cavani because he’s suddenly available, then ignore a DM…and we’re cooked!

    That’s exactly what he did with Ozil last time. We needed a top striker…he haggled and haggled and lost Higuian, miscalculated on Suarez and grabbed Ozil when we had Carzola! Great we all loved Ozil as a Gunner but he wasn’t our priority.

    Our immediate priority must be that DM….Dev and Ts, can point us in the direction of any good one. Get the DM first…any other thing is a bonus!

  118. Ts… Lavezzi,Pastore, Cavani, the ones that played in Italy yes. The current ones no. The French league has dropped the level of this players. I will cry if Di Maria ends up in PSG

  119. I like pastore but do we need another luxury player though? isco would be better…….lavezzi now that is is player I like very hard working also but will arsene buy? he is 29ish or so but he would be quality PSG are trying to offload pastore lavezzi and a few more before they can buy so

  120. No to Lavezzi. Average, nothing more. 29 y/o, never scored 10 goals in a season in the league, and – youll love this – whoscored mention one of his weaknesses as ‘finishing’ http://www.whoscored.com/Players/16844/

  121. How have you been?

  122. lol Roger…

    I think you and Joy have a valid point on Lavezzi and ligue 1…

    i think I am rating them on their performances 4 or 5 years ago in Serie A….

    There are definitely better… good work rate though and the odd diving ;)

  123. moura is another who needs guidance IMO a very very good player but the coach and the system isn’t really right for him he needs a Wenger IMO he plays like a headless chicken sometimes but he has amazing potentials and always does what is good for the team IMO he can become a good player or he might turn out to be another robinho depends on how he develops

  124. Snap. you, kt and Emma use to rave about Isco?

    do you think he can hack it in this league?

  125. Tai, I know you have a (well founded) fear that Wenger might not buy a DM. But Im really pretty confident he will… I mean the proof is that he was desperate enough to bring in Kim Kallstrom in January on loan, so he is aware of the weakness there.

    Things that could change his mind? Undying optimism that Diaby could play a season…

  126. yeah I like him from the rhs but wasn’t sure of his capabilities through the centre. Wow watching highlights of the 7-0 win against everton…I was still at secondary school and never fully appreciated how amazing Arsenal really were, I was more interested in scorelines. Dennis Bergkamp that game was immense.

  127. ligue is no that poor IMO just needs better coaches as most just want to be defensive don’t forget some cracking players are coming out from there too

  128. Tai, Dev, Ts and many on here watch a lot of football, we all have our favourite DM we’d like AW to sign…

    I just hope he signs one who can finally fill that hole in midfield properly.

  129. it is hard to judge ts re isco as almost all foreign exports is a gamble but I think he can as he is a good player he really doesn’t have any reason not to make it in the EPL IMO

  130. Snap.the general view is that it is poor… maybe a lot of bandwagon views but they still produce the talent as you said and do better than us in tournaments with all the foreigners in the league…

    You are spot on its not as entertaining as it use to be… I blame Montpellier and their counter attacking formation 3 years ago… lol

    its now just a feeder league though with AS Monaco and Psg taking the spoils… ;)

  131. roger I will take Kim back personally.. he was very tactical switched on…

  132. nickie Dennis is the best player the league has ever seen IMO the guys football brain was second to known he was such a gent as well proper player I tell you…….hope we see another Dennis in an arsenal shirt

  133. Good post Tai, guess the main reason you don’t think we need a striker is because of people’s argument that ‘An injury to Giroud and we are back to square zero.’ Well I got news for you, even with Giroud we can’t win epl, we need better than Giroud, pure and simple. I actually subscribe to your idea that Sanogo will come good. I’ve watched him in u21 world cup and he is a very decent finisher. However, if Wenger won’t sign a striker I think we will do better with an attacking trio from a collection of Ox, Sanchez, Cazorla, Walcott and Gnabry than any combination including Yaya or Giroud.

  134. Snap. He is my greatest player of all time. He is the reason I am Arsenal

  135. Choy!! How the heck are you, long time no hear from???

    I’m good thanks…

  136. Good Morning to The lady of the House and all fellow Gooners in residence.

    Tai – A very good article and it has certainly provoked some debate.

    I find it difficult to say Yey or Nay on another striker because I/we don’t know Arsene’s intentions with some of players for the coming season. This would include Akpom, Campbell, Gnabry, Sanchez, and Sanogo.

    There is no point sending Sanogo out on loan unless we have some guarantee he will get games. He wont learn anymore on another club’s bench than he will on ours. Similarly with Chuba Akpom and Joel Campbell. The FA proposed a ‘B’ league like they have in Spain, but the vested interests of the other clubs in the lower divisions shot that down. They didn’t want the added competition.

    The trip to New York may be make or break time for Akpom. Can he cut the mustard or not? Will he be sold or promoted to the first team. We should know more this Saturday or at the latest the Emirates Cup.

    Sanogo shows promise. He is tall, hard to push of the ball and dribbles well, but lacks confidence in his final touch/shot. That may change after his first goal for the first team. Don’t write him or any of our young players off, like so many were willing to do with Ramsey, until they have had a chance.

    Waht are Arsene’s intentions for Sanchez. He will probably fill in on the right for Walcott until he is fully fit. After that does Wenger intend to do a ‘Thierry Henry’ conversion on him? Turning him from a winger, where he normally plays, to a striker wher he can and has played for club and country. Does Arsene intend to revert to a 4-4-2 so he can play Giroud and Sanchez together or a mixture of formations and players as required (horses for courses)?

    Personally, I don’t think Arsene knows all the answers to these questions, but he does have some definite ideas. He will try to answer most or all of those remaining during the pre-season games. So, expect to see some odd combinations of formation(s) and/or players during those games. For intance, Akpom as the only striker on the New York trip.

    There are still five weeks of the transfer market left and Arsene is a master of the last minute buy. So, stay tuned for future developments.

  137. ts spot on but you should know we are not as wealthy as other leagues so that is to be expected……of course PSG and Monaco are not really helping but other teams are finding a way around it(youths and academy) we can still maintain a good standard and hopefully build on that

  138. Former Chelsea youth player Jordan Tabor has died aged 23, according to Sky Sports.

    Tabor, also an ex-Cheltenham footballer, is reported to have plunged to his death in Turkey, the Daily Mirrorreports.

    Tributes were paid to the left-back, from Coronation Street stars Brooke Vincent and Anthony Cotton.

  139. Morning Cg..

    Good comment, why is it you have never written a post for HH? Nuge nudge… ;)

  140. Good post Tai, but I am guessing that you know I couldn’t agree with your assertion that we are well sorted up front. Nor could I share your optimism re Sanogo. I don’t discount the possibility that he bursts onto the scene this year and scores the goals we will need. I hope he does. But, he had 3 very good chances to score at Wembley in the FACup semi and missed them all. Bring him along but buy a top striker too. In tight games you may get one chance and I don’t see us as having the player to take that, excluding Sanchez who hasn’t kicked a ball for Arsenal yet. These games of musical chairs with players might amuse some but I think that getting the right player goes a lot deeper and includes the personality and character of whoever might be up for discussion. Playing for Arsenal is different to playing for any other club in the country and perhaps only a few clubs in Europe share a similar bond and tradition. Even fans of clubs like Chelsea and Spurs know this.
    Whatever the case, I am convinced we need 2 more major signings and I reckon Ivan is too.

  141. nickie my dad is a big Dennis fan to he said zizou didn’t have half of his ability..Lol

  142. Hi cg…

    You post reminded me of something. Is it not funny how AW wants to play As on the rhs?

    Like Pires. Sanchez plays far better on the LW than on the rhs…

    When I first watched As in Udinese; Pepe and Isla were played on the RHs with AS on the lhs with Quag’la or Di Natale through the middle.

    Same as at Barca…

  143. That’s really sad Devil….

  144. Sad news Dev…

  145. Thorough & Adam good post.

  146. Adam. If Ivan is true to his word about signings, I think you are right, we are far from done in this transfer window…

  147. Rico. I just had a déjà-vu there. :)

  148. snap. if I wasn’t on an Arsenal site i would disagree with you on zizou.. :P

    imho…different type of players.

    zozou mostly played on the wings at RM…

    Same as in Juve… Alessandro Del Piero, Filippo Inzaghi played upfront with Del piro as the no.10.

    DB10 the master could not play on the rhs at Inter… but was a specialist no.10

    Goes to show how players develop differently.. zizou was rejected by NUFC in his early twenties

  149. DB played on the right a lot when he first arrived at Inter I think Ts…

  150. They’ll get their own back when we next win a trophy Devil, they’ll drop him during the bumps… ;)

  151. Thanks CG, good post you made there too.

    Yeah, Adam…thanks…now that I got your monkey off my back, I’d be glad to see a better striker than all we’ve got already…my question is …what if we didn’t add another…will it make Arsenal an inferior team to our main top four rivals? No way unless we don’t get that monster of a DM. What we have up front can get us the title with luck and good management…which indeed are still required even if we signed Messi.

  152. How come mischief maker in chief Podolski not involved???

    That is a mystery and a half!!!!

  153. true.He did Rico and started off at Ajax as a RW of the front 3 but was quickly made a no.10 by cruyff as Johan said he lacked pace…

    His debut for holland was on the rhs too

    If he did well on the rhs we wont have gotten the master cheap from Inter.

    I am not slating the Legend and master btw.. just in case…

  154. Because he’s still on holiday Dev, otherwise he’d have been at the heart of it no doubt….

  155. And he got dumped at right back Ts, all part of him learning he said in his book….

  156. Ginge – I’m not sure where Arsene intends to play Sanchez long term, but the right wing until Theo is fit, seemed logical as it minimizes the changes with the rest of the squad. Alexis has shown he is flexible and talented enough to play across the front line.

    We must hope that Theo can quickly get back to level he was at before his unfortunate injury. We’ll have to wait and see. However, both Gnabry and the Ox can also play there. Although I believe Arsene said he thinks Ox will eventually move into the center.

    I think Arsene may show some of his hand and thinking by the player selections and the positions they play in the exhibition games. This may result in some bad scores, but it may well clarify his thinking for the new season. Who plays, where they play, which (if any) Young Guns gets promoted, who (if any) gets sold and who goes out on loan.

    One thing I’m sure of is Arsene does NOT want to build his team around one player (e.g. Henry, Fabregas, Van Pursestings). I’m convinced he wants a talented ensemble that will not be seriously affected if one player becomes sick or injured or wants away.

  157. Rico – I have given it some thought and today’s discussions have given me some ideas.

  158. Rico
    This might not be true..
    But the reason SirnogGOAL was not on the plane is this,
    Wenger had a count up and made it 23 players,he decided the fairest thing to do was have a penalty shoot-out.
    Guest what happened?

    Well put together Tai,
    If we could only sign one more player,
    I would want a player,that…when he got up in the morning,he had,
    3 shredded wheat for breakfast and never looked in the mirror,
    till after the game.Shoe size 12uk

  159. Fab news Cg, I look forward to reading them.. :)

  160. I’m with you Cg, until the season starts, we don’t know where Sanchez will play…

    Fred. :lol: :lol:

  161. Hell you’re a coach.

    How do you deal with players that have a nervous disposition. They have ability but it struggles to show. Ie the simpler things go wrong for them like a simple take and control. Nervous to go training, nervous to play a game. How would you help a player through that? what advice could you give

  162. Keep on trying. Go back to basics. Sometimes even give them a one or two days off. Joke with the player to calm him down.

    It depends. you have to know the personality.

    The best thing is to show them that you are 100% behind them and they have your backing and trust.

  163. hello house.
    lovly post emeka.
    I disagree, having depth, exprience and game changer in the FW department will go a very long way in helping the club his season..

  164. Fantastic post from fellow Nigerian Gunner. But I dare say another striker and a defensive midfielder are indispensable if we are to challenge for the title against the likes of Chelsea and City.

  165. Ok thanks Dev.

    I suffer severely from nerves to even go training and I get worried about making mistakes lol. I have pre-season training tomorrow but i’m not sure I will go. I also worry a lot what other people think of me as a player which doesn’t do me any good. The years are going to pass me by where I won’t be able to play anymore and I don’t want to regret not playing

  166. I thought it was you.

    how old are you Nick?

  167. And which position do you usually play atm???

  168. Tai, it seems you are losing the battle about a striker ;)

  169. 23 years old. I suffered when I was younger but I was fully integrated into a team then and was friendly with most of the team and that was only before games. It’s more difficult now trying to “feel accepted” and I suffer before training, my stomach turns and I feel awful lol. The first 2 games I played for this team I played really well, since then I played in 4 more where I thought I didn’t play great. My friend has text me about training tomorrow and the manager has emailed us as a group. I had it in my head I wasn’t going to go, now i’m considering going my stomach feels like a washing machine lol

  170. at the moment CDM. Was RB/LB. CDM suits me much better currently. Style of play is simple, win the ball pass it on.

  171. Tai. The honest answer is, who knows? I think that Man City have decent and better options upfront and that Chelsea and Man Utd will strengthen. We aren’t miles away but it doesn’t have to be so tight for me. Options are where it’s at as the season is so long and demanding. How many times have I seen us, at 70 minutes with no alternatives in attack than Giroud? When he is shagged out (literally), defenders in the opposition team really don’t want to see a World Class striker coming on. As Wenger has so often screwed up the transfer windows, more often than not, they won’t. It has cost us dearly. This season there is no reason why it should.

  172. Just have some Nigerian Guinness Nickie.. Micko will supply that. :P

  173. Back in a bit…..

  174. I’m positive Arsene is in the market for a proper holding MF or DM, but the best candidates either don’t want to come (i.e. Bender), have too high wage demands (i.e. Khedira), are currently unavailable (Javier Martinez) or are overpriced (i.e. Carvalho). I’m not sure what the reasons are for Schneiderlin and there are other young contenders like Ginter. The list isn’t complete, but what is interesting is the range in the style/type of players involved.

    Does this mean Arsene is caught in two minds as to what/who he wants. Is his vision still evolving? I think we saw that with the left back position. Serge Aurier was the flavour of the day, but we ended up with Debuchy.

    Aurier is great pushing forward like a wing back, helping with the attack and a very accurate passer of the ball. However, this propensity to join the attack would leave us vulnerable at the back in an an area adjacent to our slowest CB in the BFG. Hence, Debuchy a more solid defender who is less effective on the attack. Had we signed a mobile holding player like Khedira, would we have ended up with Aurier at RB or was it his wage demands?

    Arsene obviously has a vision of what he wants, but can he get the players he needs for that vision? Is he adjusting that vision as he acquires new players and is that what is holding up his signing a DM? Or, is it one or more of high wages, high transfer fees, players unable to commit or club(s) currently unwilling to sell?

    The approach of the deadline day and hour of the transfer window tends to sharpen the minds of clubs and players to make or change a decision or change their demands.

  175. Sorry! Tsb “very accurate crosser of the ball”.

  176. Whops another error – Aurier and Debuchy for the RB position.

  177. Cg. I can’t disagree with your above.

    I think Ox may well start against CP like he did against AV last season…

    I also think TV should stay as he has a very strong chance to cement his place and lead us for the season as Per won’t be ready…

    CP game as it stands unless injuries. Note this is the longest Diaby has been fit for 3 seasons now… he has been fit since february.


    Debuchy Kosser TV Gibbs


    Diaby Ramsey

    Ox Sanchez/Sc19


    4-1-4-1 set-up or 4-1-2-3.

    Subs with: JW, TR07, Miguel/new CB, CJ25, Ospina/Martinez, Monreal, SC19/Sanchez

  178. cya Rico…

    Guinness no thanks! lol

  179. Ok then Nickie.

    1st) we all go through these phases. It can be coming back from injury, it can be a loss of confidence.

    2nd) keep things simple. Try to give good short passes and then go back to your position after winning the ball.

    3rd) try to read how the opposition plays. you will notice a pattern. it is a high percentage that if you notice it early on you will be a move or two before everyone else.

    4th) give instructions yourself to others. Tell those around you to find space so that you can give them the ball otherwise if they stay hidden or marked you have no one to pass to.

    5th) make yourself available so that they can pass to you. but be aware who is near you so that you will have options.

    6th) do not hold on to the ball for more than 2/3 touches. if you hold on to it a lot in that position you are asking for trouble….you will be fouled/injured or loose the ball.

    7th) be happy and congratulate yourself when you do something good.

    I hope this helps.

    I do not know you as a person and haven’t seen you play to provide a better assessment. However do look at yourself and see with what you are proud of in you………and go from there.

  180. I like that line up Ts. Stable, pacey and powerful

  181. JWJ, no mate, I constantly row with my neighbours…

  182. Ginter has officially signed for BVB

  183. you go on the river Thames and row a boat Kev???

    you never told me that. ;)

  184. I tend to hide away if i’ve made a few dodgy passes/mistakes. I need to offer myself up more too. All great points though, thanks Dev. I guess the main thing is I should just go and have fun, not worry too much what other people think. oh I never hold the ball more than 2-3 touches I like to get rid! haha. I’ll have to let you know how training goes if I go hehe :)

  185. Dont give up mate. that is the worst thing you can do. I do understand your reasons because I have been through them after my injury. But keep calm and never give up.

    Do it for yourself.

    I am 46 and still play with the team where I work. Even though I am their grandad over there….as they are all younger than me. The day I will stop playing will mean that either I am in a wheel chair or lying in a coffin.

    Even when the skies were very dark I simply refused to give up.

    Granted…..I can never play at the top level. But to hell with top level. The best thing is that I enjoy myself on the pitch.

  186. Rico…..can you kindly forward my email address to Nickie?

    Nickie feel free to email anytime you want mate.

  187. Nickie – Why are you playing? Are you hoping to make semi-pro or pro? Are playing for camaraderie, competition, exercise, fun and recreation; if so, relax and enjoy the game. Most team mates are forgiving if they know you’re doing your best.

    I coached all three of my kids and had to continually remind myself that they and all their team mates were playing for their enjoyment, not mine. I told all my players, win lose or draw, if you could look me in the eye and honestly say you’d given me the best you could that game, I could ask no more of them. Unfortunately, I’ve seen players leave the game, some forever, because a coach lost sight of why he was there.

    If it is an academy team for talented players then, of course, more is expected of the players as they are competing for positions.

  188. Spot on CG…..what I said earlier. The players are subjects of the coaching methods not the objects of the coach’s personal ambitions.

    Like you mate…..many players I have seen leave the game because a coach lost sight of why he was there.

  189. Coach, I am a fully paid up member of the South Circular Road, Rowing and Croquet club…
    We meet on the third Thursday of every month at our HQ at:

    55 Percy Circus
    Kings Cross
    London N1A 4WW…

    It’s on the 1st opposite the Honourable Brainwashing Company

  190. I’m doing good rico.. its been a long time indeed! We finally celebrated a trophy :)

  191. I really appreciate the advice guys. It’s a silly question to type into google really and I knew Dev was a coach so thought i’d ask for the first hand experience. I try play for fun, enjoyment and to get/maintain fitness. We are no where near semi pro level which makes the way I feel even more stupid. I’m not the best or the worst footballer in the team. We train with the 1sts and 2nds which doesn’t help because then I feel even more out of my depth. If training tomorrow was 3rds and below only i’d feel much better about it all. i’ve been playing powerleague also…and guess what even with friends I get nervous! haha no person should feel like that doing something they love and enjoy.

    But again, thanks for taking time out to try and give me some valuable advice.

  192. Ginge – Thanks for the update about Ginter to BVB. I was trying to remember the names of some of the young French players and couldn’t.

    I think we’ll see more of where the club are going in the market after the Emirates Cup. In my mind the window, so far, has been slower and more measured than in previous years. Though it may take off later as the deadline approaches. FFP really seems to be having an effect, especially with the financially doped petrodollar clubs.

  193. Afternoon Rico and all, Nice read Tai and I agree to every bit of it, I miss the days of ‘Igwe’ also but I doubt Sanchez will replicate the goods of that iconic Gunner, I just had to comment on this because its what I believe in and I am off again

  194. Ts lassana diara ll keep anyone out with that massive melon of his. Geez how do that bugger walk about with that head besides look at the trajectory of both players. Khedira went on to win the cl (la decima) and world cup in one season while diara is probably strutting his stuff for yeovil town :grin: morning HH.

  195. hi all…..ts I wasn’t saying Dennis was better than zidane just said my dad thought so…zidane is my favourite player ever I don’t think anybody is/was as good IMO messi might have something to say but………..

  196. For you Nickie………

  197. I’ll have to give that a watch when I get home from work. I think I’ve seen the majority of Arnolds films more than 5 times each so i’ll look forward to this hehe :)

  198. Hey tai I was in Nigeria in 08 lagos to he precise and trust me the most passionate fans are Nigerian fans. I once saw a game at eko le meridien the place was packed with a sea of red and white jerseys of arsenal and blue of chelshit. I remembered we were playing hull city at the emirates we were playing decently until geovanni scored that scorcher. The place erupted. Chelshit fans went wild. One of them ran the length of the hall laughing hysterically. I was stunned. What’s going on I asked the dude next to me? That’s how they are was his reply. The funny thing was chelshit wasn’t even playing that Saturday so there fans just came to take the piss out of us all. I was mad as an ox. Almost threw a bottle at one fat faced loud mouthed bastard. Grrrr I still get angry whenever I remember that day. What a bunch of coonts.

  199. Stan – You, who never takes a bad picture, owe me a bad picture of youself after our World Cup bet.

  200. Well that was a nice little storm, saves me watering the garden later…. :)

  201. Devil, all done re email…

  202. I’m off for the night. Have a great day everyone.

    Keep The Faith!

  203. Night Cg, sleep well…

  204. thanks Rico.

  205. Night Cg…

    Heeeeeeeeeeyyyyyyyyyyyy Gooonie…

  206. There was me thinking you had been fed to Obama’s lions in the white house/FEMA… ;)

  207. Dev,

    Very inspirational video. Thank you

  208. Hi Stan..

    Another clap of thunder came off went my Sky box and internet… grrrr

  209. Hey ts the poor lions won’t have me. Said am too gamy :grin: howdy CG world cup bet you say? Don’t remember having a bet with you. Wath yes but you??? Nah.

  210. hows it going rico? we finally won a trophy :)

  211. Re Diarra i wonder if he will move from russia this summer?

  212. I see kev is sending out his invites for the half moon gathering every third Thursday of every month.. ;)

  213. Hi Choy, we did… ;)

    Have you read that book yet…. ;)

  214. Its a hard knock life…

  215. Dear oh dear… my yanited friend just admitted Aw is the best… and 4th is a trophy… lol

    Yanited have the money but can’t get the players.. lol

    if anyone has time they should entertain themselves for 5 minutes on yanited blogs.. lmfao

    Vidal was asked whether he would be joining Manchester United. He laughed and said: ‘No, no'”- La Gazzetta

  216. “These training camps in the modern game are decided for commercial reasons” – Wenger

  217. Why do we go to the training camps? To show the team off to fans? Surely the commercial gains are poor. I’d rather the team fully focused on getting fit and sharp

  218. Ts I didn’t see squat on United blogs. They seem all contented. Have any link?

  219. I need me some laughs ts come on already be a pal. Send me the link to the United blog. Wanna go troll on them :grin: I do love me a fight from time to time.

  220. I did rico :) I have to send it back :)

    Oh I hope to be in London in a few months time :)

  221. Ben Smith ✔ @BenSmithBBC

    Southampton defender Dejan Lovren will undergo a medical with Liverpool over the weekend #LFC #SaintsFC

    James Pearce @JamesPearceEcho

    #LFC have agreed £20m deal for Lovren. Defender likely to have medical in Liverpool tomorrow.

  222. I use them a lot with my players Nickie. I use their own heroes to spur them on. Sometimes I show them a whole film to get the message across.

  223. Boo! Tai, great article. You should contribute more! :) Like many here, I think we need a striker. WOuld love to see Sanchez hit the ground running, but I also feel that we have to manage our expectations. We don’t want him to be another Arshavin, whose career peaked when he scored 4 v. Liverpool. I agree about blooding in the young ‘uns but we definitely need more experience up top.

    rico, guess who survived her first week back at work. :P Lol. Took me long enough. :D

    Hello, goonie, ginge, Nickie. :)

  224. Southampton have sold off all their good ones. :shock: Well, except Morgan, it seems.

    Hiya, GDNA and Dev. :)

  225. “Chelsea Football Club is delighted to announce the return of Didier Drobga. The striker has signed a one-year contract.

    On signing his contract, Drogba said: ‘It was an easy decision – I couldn’t turn down the opportunity to work with Jose again. Everyone knows the special relationship I have with this club and it has always felt like home to me.

    ‘My desire to win is still the same and I look forward to the opportunity to help this team. I am excited for this next chapter of my career.’

    Jose Mourinho said: ‘He’s coming because he’s one of the best strikers in Europe. I know his personality very well and I know if he comes back he’s not protected by history or what he’s done for this club previously. He is coming with the mentality to make more history.’

  226. Love what Henry has said about wearing our shirt. I wish more players would realize that.

  227. :) Choy, just pass it on to another Gooner if you don’t want it…

    Fab re London, when are you coming over?

  228. GDNA, what do you mean? The Soton players sold so far?

  229. Busy Liverpool Gdna..

    Boo agag, you must be exhausted… ;)

  230. Do you coach semi pro and up dev?

  231. Spot on re Thierry agag…

  232. rico, yes!! The endless hours begin anew. ;)

  233. Hope you enjoy it agag…. ;)

  234. BBC Sport ‏@BBCSport 9m
    A leading American coach has been invited to tell the @FA how to develop @england http://bbc.in/1l0jhK6

  235. Yikes Drogba is back!!! Oh boy now we really in shit. That bastard loves a game against us. Be afraid arsene be afraid. God help us.

  236. Ag, i’m just asking, how are you doing? lol

  237. José Luis Sánchez
    @ JLSanchez78
    Khedira has asked 9 million euros to Arsenal. If you decline, terminate his contract and will leave free in 2015 signing bonus.

  238. Ooops. Sorry, GDNA, I’m braindead, back to the labor force is why. :D :D And I’m a little distracted by online shopping. :D

    Thanks, rico. :) I hope so, too. Thierry always says the right things, doesn’t he? Did you see him interviewed by Rio F? The bit on Ray Parlour and Thierry’s English accent was haha. :D

  239. hi Agag. Hows the new job…

  240. Ginge, okay so far. You know how the first week is always the mellowest. By the second week, you feel like dying. By the third, you want to be killing everyone else. :lol: I kid, I kid. :)

  241. Alright.. End of September :)

  242. Choy, I have forgotten, was the book about Bobby or Merse?

    Darn storms!!

  243. Where are you staying Choy? London?

  244. Evening Rico and the all-new, working Agag. :)

  245. Agag, sounds like you need a holiday already !!!

  246. tsgh, weren’t you Middlesex under 16 boys champion at blow football for 3 years in a row, sure you could have helped Nickie out with his nerves earlier.

  247. I see Wenger has confirmed Ospina why the hell could he not do it last night. :D

  248. Lol.. Micko I am a middle aged man now mate.. :P

  249. Everyone seems to have confirmed it Gjoe, like all targets we seem to want to drag the living daylights of of them before making it official on .com………….so boring.

  250. AW told ESPN.

    “You know at the start Szczensy will be the No. 1, then again we’ll be down to performances and, if Ospina shows that he is better, he will play,”

  251. You never lose it tsgh.

  252. Micko, you should know by now I never won jack in my life…

    Those who cant do talk… ;)

  253. Still getting accolades! Thanks goonster, Luznic, Agag, et al….so happy someone here is an eye witness to Arsenal/Chelsea fans rivalry in Nigeria. Thanks for the insight, goonster.

    I had to attend to my nine-year old daughter’s graduation ceremony as she’s done with primary school. You may not believe it but she’s a Chelsea fan and she has taunted me repeatedly every time Chelsea got the better of us..

    How? You may ask…Two of my nephews that live with me love Chelsea as much as I love Arsenal, and since she spent time with them more than she did with me, initiating her was easy…but I learnt from that, got hold of my five-year old son and together with Mrs T…we’re all Gunners. In my house now, it’s three vs three…but I still own the TV remote when chips come down.

  254. Enjoy and be proud .Tai

  255. Evening Adam & Micko..

  256. That’s a bum link, bit like it’s namesake.

  257. Blow football Micko. I did chuckle at that, very much. I played that as a young one…

  258. TEO, make the most of it, it will never last !

  259. :) Tai re the family and remote. Wait until Chelsea go on a bad run, you’ll get them switched to be Arsenal fans…

  260. Hi Rico and Micko. We have had Biblical rain today. It must be an omen.

  261. Us too Adam, and thunder and lightening…

    Perhaps AW is writing a cheque… lol

  262. Prove it now then Arsene!

    No hindering Ivan and Dickie….

  263. Thanks Rico, Ts, Micko…

    Really had a good time.

    Pls what time is our match in Us today?

  264. Some things will never change the boss finally remembers where he put the cheque book. He buys three players four if you count the 15 year old signed(Rico won’t :D).
    Why do we feel the need to make jokes about cheques Rico you need to let it go. :D

  265. It’s tomorrow night Tai, 5pm US time I think and 11pm Uk time…

  266. :) Joe, you know me too well…. lol

  267. There we have it mates……..the answer to our questions.

    Those who think that AW will buy another striker are in dreamland.

    Costa Rica international Joel Campbell is making strides to finally join up with Arsenal.

    He uploaded a photo of himself onto his Twitter account, wearing a Gunners training top – bearing the number 28.

    Campbell is finally in North London, having returned to the club after an extended break from his participation at the World Cup. He was not back in time to travel on the club’s pre-season trip to New York, and will instead hope to make his debut in the Emirates Cup in early August.

    The number 28 shirt at Arsenal is currently vacant, after Kieran Gibbs gave it up this summer to take the number 3 shirt from the departed Bacary Sagna. While not confirmation, it is a huge hint, that this will be the number he takes this coming season if his place in the squad is confirmed.

    Campbell has been out on loan for the past three seasons since signing for Arsenal, to Lorient in France, Real Betis in Spain, and Olympiakos in Greece, but as his message above shows, it is the Gunners he is ‘focused’ on.

    With Theo Walcott still not fully recovered from injury, and German stars Lukas Podolski and Mesut Ozil due back late from breaks, there is a unique chance for Campbell to stake his claim for a role this coming season.

    He appears determined to impress, and an instant impact in pre-season, will surely seal the deal for him to stay, despite interest from AC Milan in signing him this summer.

  268. Thanks, Rico.

    Wenger seems to have confirmed Ospina…very unlike him to use an unconfirmed link so assuredly. Everything seems to be changing!

  269. This ospina deal is making me edgy. Why another “na” like almumina why not a “man” like seaman or Lehman. Gee arsene get with the times. Spanish speaking keepers don’t cut it in the epl especially with us :grin: afternoon hhers.

  270. Joel Campbell will be ‘like a new signing’!
    I hope he shines……..think of the money it will save us!

  271. Miguel Gutierrez
    @ MiguelGutie77ez
    BREAKING NEWS: According to KICKER Arsene Wenger (64) ARSENAL coach, said today that he will not sign Sami Khedira (27) REAL MADRID

  272. But Sanogo could still go on loan Devil. He certainly should..

  273. I don’t believe that old bollards Gdna…

  274. I sincerely hope so as well Wavy. If AW uses him in the right way then I feel he can make it. But I would not be surprised if he does not.

    It is possible that in the Carling Cup we will see a front line of Campbell, Aneke, Sanogo…….depending on the opposition.

    I hope so.

  275. I hope for AW’s sake he shines if he doesn’t sign a striker.

    But I sill think he will…

  276. The only Arsenal player I know that benefitted recently from a loan deal is Wilshere. The latest in Miyachi ended a disaster. If he ends up not making it, sending him to Bolton is the reason. You just can’t send players on loan indiscriminately when no team in EPL/England has Arsenal DNA.

    Teams tend to retard Arsenal youngsters on loan than improve them. For Arsenal, loan deals seldom work. I want to be proved wrong. Where’s Ts?

  277. I think most agree re loans Tai. And yes, Jack was the only one who truly benefited.

    As Potter so often says, a lot of that is down to the FA not having set up a proper ‘b’ division or something similar….

    Ts is probably copying and pasting some stats to answer your question… ;)

  278. Adam, we have biblical rain here everyday, it’s par for the course !

  279. Crazy golf for you again then Micko?

  280. There’s been no rain here it’s been 25 degrees all day sun burn on my arms.

  281. The only way for our players to make it is if the EPL allow Premier clubs to run another club…..Barcelona and Barcelona B. The latter go are promoted only up till segunda divisione. And they field players under 21 years and rarely over age players.

  282. Any time you wanna play a round rico, just give me the nod !

  283. Today I ran 8km in 50 mins. It has been over an hour and a half since I finished the run and the adrenalin is still pumping.

  284. When at Bolton the 10 minutes or so that Myachi played he looked the real deal until some canny old bruiser kicked him into the hoardings at the side of the pitch, he didn’t play again that season.
    It’s a real problem for some of the youngsters just making their way if they are good they kicked from here to Kingdom come on loan or at home, it makes no difference. An old defender who has been around the block a few times knows how to deal with a ‘young whippersnapper’ kick fu*k out of him! Frighten him out of the game or injure him, so he has to go off, etc etc. but all players have to learn their trade, they have to learn how to ride the assaults and insults etc and just get on with it. However, using Myachi as an example if you aren’t physically strong enough to take the stick you ain’t never going to make it to the top and so another one bites the dust!
    Give them all a chance, see what they can do see if they can survive and see if they can make progress!
    If a player is good enough he’s old enough. If he’s tough enough!

  285. You’re on Micko… ;)

  286. Got to dash guys, tonight is the night the rescue hens meet the old girls…

    Catch up tomorrow..

    Night all….

  287. enjoy the chicken run Rico.

    Good night Lady

  288. Rico, brings back why I wanted the FA to bar first team EPL regulars from Capital One Cup …to help teams develop their youngsters.

    Youth league and cups are seldom on Tv. They’re hardly played in main stadia, making fans stay away. But a Carling Cup, featuring benchers, recuperating players and youngsters at the Emirates will still draw full capacity…and playing before such a capacity crowd is on its own a learning curve.

    I repeat the English FA love money more than football development, possibly why they gang up with the press to pull down Arsenal that try to nurture players from the scratch, thereby denying the FA transfer cuts, the home office work permit application fees and tips from the likes of Abramovich and co.

  289. MILAN, Galliani: “Balotelli is 99.9% periodical: never asked to leave”
    The a. D. AC Milan: “Cerci Campbell? Loves Inzaghi.” Robinho: “There are offers, we will find a solution”

    “Balotelli has never asked to be traded. Will remain at Milan, 100% of the market does not exist, but 99.9 Periodic yes. “This is what he said Adriano Galliani in Marina di Pietrasanta. On rumors of an interest in Cerci Campbell, the Rossoneri For added:” How much are other players that have features like our coach, “said a. d. Robinho on the issue, he concludes:” There are other offers and will arrive on Monday. We believe we can find a solution. “Finally, on the election of the President of the Football Federation:” The reforms we think of them with Tavecchio President”

  290. Nite rico, any strife and I’ll despatch my two indian runners, they’re pure pets really.
    TEO, nice debut matey.

  291. Thanks, Micko…

    Goodnight pals. Tomorrow is another day.

  292. Tony Leen @tonyleen · 30m
    Interesting insight from Portuguese contacts tonite re Carvalho to Arsenal: I’m told clubs are 10m apart on valuation and AFC won’t budge.Source close to Sporting believe they should take Arsenal offer of 24m. Lisbon club holding out for 34m. Deal won’t happen at that price.

  293. Thomas Vermaelen to Barcalona looks a great deal for Arsenal…

    £16million as opposed to £10m from the Mancs, plus not having to do business with those Northern tossers…

    A win win…

    The only downside is we’ll be waiting forever to get paid.

  294. Rick/Fred, just been looking at our squad and who’ll be named in the 25…

    Refresh my memory, what is the status of the following and do they have to be named in the 25…?

    AOC, Gnabry, Sanogo, Miyaichi, Martinez, Miquel, Afobe, Ajayi….

    Thanks in anticipation lads…

  295. Why dont we keep TM 05 to support the DM, LB, and the CB positions I bet He’ll be very good in DM as a BWM just a thinking…

  296. Kev, isn’t Jan Vertonghen (Tommy’s best mate) , the numpty who turned us down for his boyhood club also being linked to barca, I can’t see it myself but I never saw Kolo to citeh for 16 mill either, like you say a win win no brainer really, still think manure will be favourites to land him.

    TEO, I seem to remember oliver twist having a very happy ending, nothing wrong with being a little bit greedy !

    Nite all.

  297. Greizman joins Ath ending Carzola link…

  298. David Ornstein
    Arsenal are working on a deal to sign Southamton defender Calum Chambers. Fee agreed & medical took place on Friday #afc #saintsfc

  299. deal agreed with Southampton for Chambers. Medical done.

    Schniederlin problem is the price. Wenger is an admirer

  300. what worries me is what happens to Jenkinson. I’d hate for him to leave, maybe a trial run at CB against NYRB

  301. @BenSmithBBC: I’m told Arsenal want Morgan Schneiderlin AND Callum Chambers from Southampton

  302. Ben Smith ‏@BenSmithBBC 2h
    I’m told Arsenal want Morgan Schneiderlin AND Callum Chambers from Southampton. Spurs have also made an enquiry for Jay Rodriguez

  303. AFCPressWatch™
    #MUFC have upped their bid for the Arsenal captain. Arsenal have put in a counter bid of £5M plus Vermaelen for Phil Jones. #AFC #SolidInfo

  304. GuiIIemBaIague: Atletico’s RB Javier Manquillo says he’s chosen Liverpool ahead of Arsenal, because he is “not ready to play for a big club yet.” #AFC #LFC”

  305. Lol!!! Who says footballers arn’t intelligent…

  306. If rumours are true and Chambers to Arsenal is a done deal, what now for “The Corp” CB/Loan or Farewell?

  307. He’d probably be headed out on loan to westham coz this Chambers guy can play CB also, so its logical he’d be the 2nd choice RB and 4th choice CB

  308. Morning folks! Blimey.. 2 right backs in one window .. geez… Wenger has finally woken up! This one slipped right under the radar.

  309. I won’t rejoice at any other signing until we’ve got a DM!

  310. Got to feel sorry for Adam Lallana.Just made his dream move and now out injured for 6-8 weeks with ligament damage…

    Maybe the injury curse is heading up North…

    Morning Choy, Tai, Lex Bt, Gdna and all….

    Gdna, your earlier is very very funny…

  311. Morning all…..still no striker or DM yet?? Is the game on ESPN tonight?

  312. Morning Rico and Lee. If true, Chambers to Arsenal could be surprising.

  313. Morning Rico and all.

    Is Morgan going to be another Toulalon?

    Another top french DM who Aw never signed.

  314. Morning Adam & Lee..

    Sounds like it’s true re Chambers…

  315. Morning Ts, Morgan next apparently… lol

  316. Brudder how are you doing? Had a wonderful day at the beach yesterday but there was 4 Spanish young men openly smoking weed next to us…..it smelt divine!

  317. Aurier is joining PSG on a one year loan. FFP manipulation…

  318. Apparently we will be keeping an eye on Martin Hinteregger today….

  319. Looks like Koeman will need to bring his boots….have Southampton got any players left???

  320. Just been writing something similar in today’s post about that Lee.

  321. What time is ko Uk time?

  322. I think it’s either 10pm or 11pm….

  323. Hi Rico. Perhaps Jenks will go on loan to see if he can improve his powers of concentration? That is if the Chambers thing is true.

  324. I know I’ve been watching you….lol

  325. Lee. It’s the permissive Spanish society. The weather here yesterday was mental. I was caught in a literal deluge on the North Circ and found myself speedboating as I aquaplaned along. I have never seen so much rain fall in a half hour.

  326. Thanks Lee, I’ll be snoring by then….

    It seems true enough Adam, a loan to West Ham wouldn’t do him any harm, Big Sam certainly knows how to defend, could be the making of him….

  327. :) Lee….. Darn stalker you..

  328. And you Adam, get out of bed and make Mrs A that cup of herbal tea you promised her! ;)

  329. I’m no Murray Walker Rico….. I just am in the circle of trust, as Adam can vouch!!! Enough said……….

  330. Adam is a bad as you though Lee… lol

  331. Already 28c here…..better make sure those Estrellas are super cold today!!

  332. We’re harmless though, not complete nutters!

  333. Bring one home for me Lee, my favourite beer. Well, one of them…

    Absolutely, nowhere near the nutter stage and quite harmless… lol

  334. But Kev, no there’s another kettle of fish!! ;)

  335. :) Poor Kev…

  336. Kev followed me home last night by pretending he was a cabbie. :)

  337. Lee. I have been up for hours mate. Mrs A has been fed and watered and is just eying the Pol Roger she had in the fridge.

  338. Xavi: “Everyone at Barcelona wanted
    to play for Arsenal if we didn’t play for
    Barca, we all admired everything about
    The club”

  339. :) Adam…

    I’m off out with Fido, new post will go up around 10.15, should be back by then…

    If not, soon after….

  340. Morning guys.
    Working sucks.
    Working on saturdays sucks even more.
    Soooo tired.
    Still, after a good nights kip, the Arsenal is back.

  341. Ginge, I admire everything about the club as well :)

  342. This masquerade of being a “cabbie” is to hide the fact he works for M.F.I.

  343. Apart from the ticket prices….

  344. Apart from the cost of food & drink…

  345. All good apart from that….

  346. Is the match being televised in Australia Scotty?

  347. Sure is mate.
    Is it a 10pm kick off for you, Lee?

  348. Hiya Ginge.
    I am buzzing today.
    Saw my puppies…….won’t be long now til Dennis and Thierry hit the racetracks!!!

  349. I think so…

  350. 7am here.
    Sunday morning.
    This is probably the one, single game of the year that suits me perfectly.

  351. Dennis and Thierry… who is getting the hat trick? :-)

    How old are they now?

  352. 12 months, Ginge.
    They’re about be broken in…exciting times…..

  353. has anyone read/heard about the incident involving Lille and Maccabi Haifa?

  354. Ginge, I did see the pictures of that, but very little detail.
    Seems a “friendly” game lol

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