Nothing from Arsenal on deadline day other than players leaving. I thought we might try and bring a defender in at least, even one on loan to help cover at left back but I guess if Mikel Arteta was happy to loan out Kieran Tierney, Nuno Tavares too, he believes the squad he has is good enough and deep enough to deal with the challenge ahead. Until January anyway when the transfer window reopens.
Flo Balogun, Rob Holding Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Granit Xhaka are the main players never to been seen in an Arsenal shirt again. With AMN, I wonder if he regrets not accepting he might have made a really good right back for Arsenal. Balogun possibly wonders what more he needed to do whilst out on loan to be given a chance under Arteta but of both Holding and Xhaka, I’ll always have fond memories. The FA Cup win with Holding and Merts at the back was brilliant. Good luck to all the players who’ve left north London for pastures new.
So, here’s the squad. 26 players in total, including Pepe and Soares who could yet depart. I’ve a feeling Soares might be sticking around though. Mo Elneny is in there too but despite not a single under 23 player being promoted, it doesn’t necessarily mean we won’t see a number of them feature this season, especially if we have an injury hit campaign. Fingers and toes crossed we don’t.
Mikel Arteta was asked about his change of tactics and formation this season during his press conference yesterday and I must say, his answer left me baffled but I do now know that he doesn’t always drive the same route to work. Seriously though, he’s the manager and if he believes what he’s doing is best for the club then he’ll either be considered a genius by the end of the season, or a tinker man who has ruined what might have been a very good season for the club.
One has to hope he proves himself to be a genius because football fans are ruthless. It doesn’t matter how close we came to winning the league last season because we live in the present. This season matters more than what’s gone on before. The injury to Timber was cruel but couldn’t be helped but Arteta now really needs Havertz to performing a lot better than he has so far. He needs this new formation to click into place. He also needs to hope that the likes of Zinchenko, Tomiyasu, Saliba and Partey don’t pick up long term injuries. The same applies to every player of course but Partey, Zinchenko and Tomiyasu have a history of breaking down at some stage during a season.
Arsenal play Man Utd tomorrow in what already feels like a must win match. Stupid I know because the season in long. Utd strengthened their squad yesterday and apparently, their new striker signing earlier in the summer is now fit to go. Much fuss has been made about Rasmus Hojlund, he’s even been labelled the next Haaland. Ridiculous though as he’s 20 years old and has never stepped foot into Premier League football. His history is Atlanta and Sturm Graz. More recently, Denmark for whom he’s scored 6 goals in 6 games, 3 against Finland. Obviously, I hope he proves to be a £72 million flop, unlike Havertz who I hope proves to be a £65 million bargain….
Still, more about the game tomorrow, tomorrow.
Catch up in the comments.