Morning Gooners,

The clearout has begun:

Professionals Manuel Almunia, George Brislen-Hall, Gavin Hoyte, Sean McDermott, Rhys Murphy, together with Scholars James Campbell and Jeffrey Monakana will all be released on July 1 and are therefore free to join other clubs from this point.

That’s seven so far and reports this morning suggest that we are in talks with Brussia Dortmund about Bendtner and Zenit in relation to Arshavin.

For those who haven’t read it, there is a very good article written by yankiegunner. It’s worth a read.

We all want M’Vila don’t we, but suggestion is if that deal doesn’t materialise, we are keeping an eye on Étienne Capoue who currently plays for Toulouse in Ligue 1. He’s a 23 year old 6′ 2″ defensive midfielder who also plays centre back when needed and has represented France at under 21 level. His contract expires next summer!

Cheaper option? Yes as he has only one year remaining on his contract.

The more likely option, I would say so, especially as he can slot into defence if needed.

The right option? Well we haven’t signed him, but if we do, let’s get him in the door and playing before we judge.

So, back to today….

Many supporters are panicking over whether Robin Van Persie stays or goes but I am just wondering who will take the corners if he should decide he’s future is somewhere else.

Scoring 30 Premier League goals, 37 in all competitions is an amazing tally for one season, but for our only recognised striker, I wonder how many he might have scored with perhaps a David Beckham taking the set pieces.

It’s my belief that when you have a goal scoring machine such as Van Persie you offer him as many opportunities as you can and I see corners and free kicks as opportunities. We know by how many goals the others have amassed that without Robin we wouldn’t be looking at top four and Champions League next season.

Steve Bould will be taking some of the training sessions next season and I have heard he likes to get in with the players gee them up when they are not performing. Steve was also a tough player, renowned his solid defending and one of his first jobs when the pre-season  training begins  will be no doubt, to sort out our defensive unit.

We  all know that Arsene Wenger only seems to have time for attacking moves and tactics so I would urge Steve to whisper in Arsene’s ear about that. Our strikers, including should Robin should he stay, together with Podolski should be kept in the penalty area when we have a corner/set piece. Their job is to score goals, and they could get a lot more if they don’t take that set piece. Ok, it’s different if the set-peice holds a true goal scoring opportunity, but otherwise, leave that to someone else.

With the strikers in the right place, maybe our defenders will reamin in their rightful position, ready for a quick break from the opposition.

We may then begin to cut down some of the 49 goals conceded this season.

Where I am hoping that Boulds influence will be a positive move in cutting out the huge gaps in our defence, I also hope that he can educate the likes of Walcott and Gervinho. I don’t want to sound negative but Theo has the pace of a racehorse but a brain the size of a pea, and Gervinho, who quite clearly has the ball skills to take a defender, has trouble finding a pass to a team-mate!

Both these players could be quite devastating if give the right and simple training techniques.

From what I understand, Podolski style of play is very similar to Robin van Persie , both are left sided players who would be looking to move in the same positions. Of course I am worried that Podolski has been brought just in case we cannot keep Robin, but should Robin, the introduction/addition of Podolski can only enhance our goal scoring opportunities.

Whether they are both on the pitch at the same time, remains to be see but their double act could really destroy teams.

Our tactics will have to change quite a bit from previous seasons, we cannot afford to take one of these strikers out of the middle to take a corner or a free kick as we want them in the middle to receive these balls, i see no sense in having your 37 goal a year striker out of the action. We have 11 players on the field of play any one of these players should be able to pass a ball should the need arise from one side of the park to the other, and in the general direction of its target, so a corner shouldn’t present too many problems with a bit of practise.

Its my belief that bringing both central defenders up for set plays in not good tactics, although we have benefitted by the odd goal, but when you consider the goals we have conceded i believe they are better in their positions and saving their energy by protecting their own goal and leave the goal scoring to the strikers in the middle. David Beckham was a master of the dead ball kicks he also crossed a ball which normally found its target, that is a tactic that must be worked on as we will now be having two strikers that can both head a ball and who can score from tight angles all we need is someone that can deliver.

I would like to take this opportunity to welcome Steve to his new position as Arsene’s No 2 we expect a lot from you and we believe your the right man for the job, let them know your there and sort this rabble out.

Written by Steve Palmer