Cesc, Campbell And Experience

You knew it was coming, simply a case of when not if. Cesc to Barcelona, wow, what a shock, I never thought I’d hear that story. Still, there is an interesting side to this in that there must be an element of truth, and follow the (skewed) logic here. For reasons best known to themselves, probably related to copious quantities of alcohol, the official site has started to (half-heartedly) report on transfer rumours. Now, Arsenal has a policy not to comment on deals until they are completed, albeit usually a week after everyone else has confirmed that it has happened.

So, anything that is on there would be the club officially commenting and therefore cannot be happening because that would be a breach of their policy. Which means that Buffon, Arteta, Wright-Phillips and Yaya Toure will not be donning the new Arsenal home kit next season. However, as the club has not mentioned Sagna and RvP to Juventus, Gallas to PSG or Cesc to Barcelona, there must be an element of truth in them. Unless of course that logic, like the transfer gossip page itself, is a load of old b*llocks.

Onto surer ground, Sol Campbell is feeling the luuurve of the club and his team-mates. Robin van Persie kicked it all off:

I think his character is great, he is a winner, he is honest – the Dutch way almost. In Holland, we are used to people who are direct, who say what they think and he is like that, very much.

He is one of those characters you need in a squad – when someone is easing off he just tells you, ‘listen, this is not the way to do it. Sharpen up because otherwise this isn’t going to work.’ We need that and that is why I am very pleased that he is here. When you look at when he came and the way he ended the last couple of months – fantastic.

Campbell himself is happy to be talking to the club and with Gallas increasingly likely to lead, there is a key role for Sol to play in the squad, passing on the vast experience he has to players such as Djourou who can only benefit from the former England international’s knowledge. However, to go into next season with Campbell and Vermaelen as the two senior centre backs is a huge risk, one that Wenger does not appear to want to take.

The manager has imposed a deadline on the Frenchman but how flexible that is remains to be seen. Certainly the Chairman’s recent comments about the financial requirements of Gallas indicate that the club and player remain some distance apart in negotiations. Whilst Gallas is viewed with distrust in some quarters following the events at St Andrews and his comments over the squad, there is no doubt that defensively Arsenal were more secure with he and Vermaelen at the central pairing.

If Gallas and Silvestre both move on to pastures new, then Lee Dixon’s argument that there will be four new players needed this summer holds some sway. Chamakh’s protracted move will surely be over soon  which would leave three more. Nigel Winterburn suggests that Wenger will not be focussing on young players this summer, changing his rationale by looking for more experience. Possibly that is the case, the balance may not be right in the squad but it becomes a matter then of defining experience. Is it the number of games played? If so, what is the threshold because a lot of the current squad have played well in excess of 100 games for their clubs in all competitions.

A player who has spent his career with relegation-threatened clubs has plenty of experience but is it the right kind? Upson and Green are frequently linked with the club and fall into that category. Melo is another who has plenty of experience in various leagues but has not won anything at club level since 2003 at his multitude of clubs since leaving his native Brazil. If we define experience as having won trophies, then the limited talent pool into Arsene can dip is reduced further and becomes ever more costly.

I do not argue against signings this summer, the squad needs them every summer to keep fresh, as well as replacing those who are leaving. However, we should not be blind to the talent that already is at the club and perhaps the wholesale changes desired should be no more than a tweak to make things click over the whole of the season.

’til Tomorrow.

Posted on May 14, 2010, in Arsenal, Football, Premier League, Premiership, Soccer, Transfer Gossip and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 203 Comments.

  1. Cue Bill!

  2. Happy today BB?

    Good post YW. I agree entirely with your last paragraph.

  3. Walking Wounded

    Stop Stop

    We have the money to buy some great players this window, replacing some of the freebies leaving and adding one or two.

    Let’s not go down the line and say our squad is good enough, because althoug it is good, it certainly isn’t good enough.

    Tweaking isn’t enough

  4. Excellent, YW

  5. FinnGun

    Heard Stewart Robson say the same thing on the radio the other day.He said 30% of all the goals Arsenal conceded were down to Vermaelen’s lack of positional sense

  6. Zimpaul wrote….

    ‘ There were a number of African regiments that saw service. If I’m not mistaken probably several hundred thousand in total. The most famous of course were the Senegalese who saw service in various exotic locations.

    In our part, it was the Rhodesian African Rifles (RAR). It was a bitter, bitter experience. On the front line there was a degree of comraderie, even though in most instances Africans were issued with inferior equipment, boots, uniforms, food and frequently not issued with weapons except in last resort (they were the diggers, movers, carriers).

    Never-the-less, when battles commenced and it was a matter of life and death, Africans fought, and died with their comrades as one.

    On return after 1945, all ex-servicemen received compensation, often in land, and life-long pensions – with the exception of black Africans, who received a kick in the pants. I wish I was exaggerating.

    My father died in 1961, aged 40 years, from injuries sustained. I was 3. His battalion having lost a terrible artillery duel in the desert, its remnants mainly captured. I guess he was lucky.

    His dying message to his two sons, carried by our Mother: facism is pure evil and all forms of racism is its deadly cousin, fight and destroy it wherever it rears its ugly head. So we did.’

    …an extraordinary story, Zimpaul. Thanks.

  7. The site is clearly dealing only with those transfer rumours linking players TO the club and not those linking our players to other teams.

    The second type of rumour is bad for the club so they don’t post it.

  8. Didnt Wenger sign 7 players in 2001 proir to the double winning season?

  9. If we are bringing 3 players which is more likely?
    1}Chamakh+new defender+yaya or any player who can play defender and mildfield roles. OR
    2}Chamakh+two main new defenders.
    For me i think the 1st option is more better given that one of the youth defenders on loan would come in. Then we’ll have verminator+djouru,new defender+yaya+campbell+bartley. Thats six defenders. I still think we need a cover for song and denilson thereby bringin someone who can play two roles like yaya or anyplayer who can play cb+dm comfortably when needed. But i cant see yaya warming the bench for song. Cause we’ve got one song. But more bcos durin the ACN we wud lose him,song,eboue. I’m just using yaya as a case study

  10. If we are bringing 3 players which is more likely?
    1}Chamakh+new defender+yaya or any player who can play defender and mildfield roles. OR
    2}Chamakh+two main new defenders.

    For me i think the 1st option is more better given that one of the youth defenders on loan would come in.

    Then we’ll have verminator+djouru,new defender+yaya+campbell+bartley.

    Thats six defenders. I still think we need a cover for song and denilson thereby bringin someone who can play two roles like yaya or anyplayer who can play cb+dm comfortably when needed.

    But i dont think yaya would warm the bench for song. But we’ve only got one song. But more bcos durin the ACN we wud lose him,song,eboue. I’m just using yaya as a case study.

  11. What’s wrong with tweaking WW? We just cant go on a mass buying escapade and overhaul the whole team, a couple of signings or three and we are good.

  12. Frank and Zimpaul, seems you guys are not the average fans. You’ve both been around a while. Guess that’s why you guys know a lot more about Arsenal than the average Gooner! Been supporting the Gunners since the late ’80’s. Remember then that Liverpool was all the rage when any Kenyan bothered to take a peek at English football. It was Ian Rush, John Barnes, etc. And ofcourse serie A was the in thing with Maradona, Gullit, Van Basten, etc. Wonder what got you guys to supporting the Arsenal? For me it was racism. I could identify with Paul Davis, Michael Thomas and David Rocastle. Then came Kevin Phillips. All black you see. Though I expect you guys are white. Later I took a liking to Alan Smith, Tony Adams, Lee Dixon and Paul Merson. For Kenyans what clinched it was the coming of Nwankwo Kanu, many years later. It was then that most came to appreciate Arsene Wenger. In fact I fear that most Kenyan Gooners love Arsene more than they do the club! I’m a rarity down here in that I loved Arsenal before Wenger and Kanu came along.

  13. 1 loose cannon

    Bigbrovar- How do you do it? lol. Make it more exciting next time like “numero uno” or something like that.
    Reading an article by the guttersnipe papers online (I never buy their filthy papers) made me sick the way they reported the whole Fabregas quotes. Thye took out the the quotes where he says he is happy at Arsenal and in no hurry to leave and made the whole thing as if Arsenal are going to be relegated next season.

    When Mourinho said Barcelona going to the Bernabeu for The C.l final is an obsession, he is absolutely right. Out of the 2 spanish teams Barcelona is the inferior historically and they will do anything to put one over their rivals. That Q&A session made by the Catalan company Adventura or something like that, is simply to tell Madrid He is not going to join you. He was answering questions sitting awkwardly with a sweaty face, I felt sorry for him. Anyway he hasn’t said anything new at all, he never hid the fact that he would like to join Barcelona one day but he is in no rush to leave Arsenal so in the end it will come down to money if Barca want to pay 60 million and Wenger is happy to sell then he would go, If Wenger does not want him to go, He will not go, it’s as simple as that. In my opinion Barcelona will not bid for him this summer as they are after David Villa, and he will not come cheap. He will stay

  14. I meant Kevin Campbell, not Phillips!

  15. Yogi, what moderation?

  16. FinnGun, you’re so right I’ve been saying it for a while that TV’s positional play is aweful. It’s not picked by the media because the pundits like gungho – and their often not the brightest lot.

  17. Vermaelen has made many mistakes this season. Zonal Marking ran a fine comb over the issue and magnified small things. You could do the same with many centre backs.

    He’s had a fine season, and I like his toughness and willingness to attack the ball.

    The difference between people’s attitude to Vermaelen as opposed to Gallas is another of those perverse dynamics with Arsenal fans. Gallas has barely made mistakes all season. Yet, if you listened to media (and Arsenal fans) he’s more like a spare tyre.

  18. LimparAssist

    OOU, you were talking the other day of youth contracts, wages etc. There is a pdf of the Wet Spammers squad salaries knocking about at the moment which has their youth players earning around £400 – £4,000 a week, depending on first team appearances. So Jordan Spence who hasn’t featured is on £400, and Junior Stanislas who has is on £1,500 – for example. But then you have Frank Nouble who Wham bought from Chelsea in January(?) for half a million, and he’s on £10,000. He made 1 or 2 appearances this season I think (once against us certainly) but I guess his wages are that high to match what he was earning at Chelsea.

    I’m not really sure how all this relates to Arsenal, but roughly speaking I’d say we’d be offering wages around the Frank Nouble end of the spectrum in order to be competitive – to players who are on the fringes of our first team; I’m thinking of Eastmond, JET, Mannone, Merida.

    All just guessing really but I thought I’d let you know this little bit of vaguely interesting info has come to my attention – seeing as you were asking the other day!

  19. LimparAssist

    Really enjoyed your historical posts Zimpaul.

    And Yogi, couldn’t agree more about arsenal.com’s decision to cover the transfer speculation. What a heap of steaming w*nk. I can’t understand what possible good they think it does. There must be an angle, but I just don’t get it.

  20. You’re bang on, LA. I went to the horse’s mouth on this one, and the average is 10k.

  21. Vermaelen has been outstanding in every sense of his game. You can’t take a few snap shots of a player out of position then say hes made plenty of mistakes, you can do that to any player. The fact that he leaves his position unattended to go win the ball is risky, but more often than not he does win the ball. You cannot fault the guy for that, he is one of top CB’s in the Premiership.

    Ole

    Agree on Gallas, he has been fantastic too. Not a single error on his part. If we had one of the two players fit througout our vital games we would have performed much better.

  22. Kenyan Gunner, I started supporting Arsenal in 70/71. I played youth football, they won the double that year. I got the shock of my life later in 1977, at Highbury, when attending a match v Coventry (I was based in London at the time, illegally as it happens, but that’s another story) a section of fans starting singing “Liam Brady is white, is white”. Was I hearing correctly? Indeed I was. Now, the guys I was with were embarrassed and spent a long time explaining that this was not the ‘real Arsenal’. As it happened Brady played brilliantly that day, and I fell for the club through him. What an exquisite footballer he was, his passing! Later, it was the same process as you describe, my heart filled with pride as Arsenal broke taboos surrounding ‘colour and nationality’. I am very proud of the club in this respect. It is a similar journey for many African supporters, Rocky, Davis, Thomas and Kanu being such a big names (but please not forgeting Vivian Anderson, who spent 3 memorable seasons at Arsenal before heading to ManU) and of course, once you get Arsenal in your system … c’est la vie.

    Most of the younger African supporters seem to be attracted by the style more than anything; the stlightly older supporters like yourself and me.

  23. Gallas and Sylvestre – please leave, please please – oh and Traore

  24. Zulu… please go too

  25. I heard Stewart Robson on Talkshite say that he thought TV was a poor reader of the game.And asked to pick his team of the season Robson picked Richard Dunn in front of TV!!!!!!!!!

  26. shotta-gunna

    Ole and Finnish Gun – The insight provided by Zonal Marking’s is a stinging indictment of the sheer stupidity and ignorance of the various pundits and their echo chamber in the Arsenal blogs. No serious supporter of Arsenal or objective football fan will deny that Vermaelen was an excellent signing. But in their rush to perpetuate their own myth that grit and effort (aka running around a lot) is the definition of a good player, they have totally ignored a catalog of defensive errors that have led to key goals. A similar myth is being spread about Alex Song, who by the way I have defended to the hilt when the same mob kept banging on that he was not fit to wear the shirt. But he has been culpable in some key defensive errors over the past season. Part of the improvement that is required by this team is in these key players improving their positional awareness in the defensive side of the game. Glossing over their errors will cost us dearly next season.

  27. LimparAssist

    What… you asked JET? (No need to answer that one. Mum’s the word)

  28. Walking Wounded

    First Lady

    Tweaking is what you do to go from 98% to 100%.
    Tweaking is what you do to win games in the last ten minutes.
    Tweaking should be done mid game….

    NOT when we have had a poorer season to last season.

    “Tweaking is not enough” is what I said, we need changes in key places

  29. CG

    You WANT Tweety to stay?????

  30. PVR

    Any fan that goes around crying telling players to leave should expect somebody to tell them to leave also.. if you can rate them as players then tell them to bugger off, you should be able to accept that attitude too.

    Many fans actually enjoy watching this team and all the players, despite what you may read in the Sun. These fans know what Wenger and co is doing for our great club.. do you?

  31. Walking Wounded

    When Wenger says ‘Tweaking’ he means he ain’t going to make wholesale changes like some of the idiotic and low IQ fans are calling out for.

    This season we were 2 players away from taking the league.. Van Persie, and Gallas… those two fit we would have done it.. forget the rest that were injured. Thats how small the margin is. So adding a player or 2 will give us that cover which we lost through all the injuries. It’s not even a case of adding numbers, its replacing the outgoing players like Silvestre, and adding 1 or 2 more QUALITY players who will add something to our team.

  32. Ole G is right about Vermaelen and Gallas, since Gallas makes so few mistakes and when he does boy does he clean up. But the energy between the two was pretty immediate. As time went on, and without Gallas in attendance, Vermaelen’s positional lapses were exposed from time to time. He will naturally improve next season.

    Me, I like to think 3 players are coming in this season. Chamakh, a defender, and one of those Wenger signings Frank calls ‘enzymes’ (they make stuff happen). Now this third might be a keeper. I’m just not sure that’s the sole or real cause of 40 goals.

  33. Ole@12.50pm

    Very good point

    Gallas is given a raw deal by fans.He has been superb for the last 18 mths.Cant remember any mistakes by Gallas yet TV gets all the praise.The press and pundits praise TV to the hilt yet ignore Gallas who is the better defender

  34. It doesn’t matter what keeper came in, the problem was stopping the chances, which we didn’t do. The keeper is just the poor bloke in the team that at most clubs is made the scapegoat.

    Gomes… Cech… Valdes.. Hart… Van Der Sar… James… Lehmann… all been blamed at various stages in their careers. Almunia’s porformances dropped from last season, but the chances we gave away shouldn’t have been there in the 1st place.. if we defended better as a team we would be saying what a good season he has had once again.

    Even with our 1st 11 we were leaking goals, and with having TV and Gallas at the back. Take away Van Persie, Arsh, Cesc, Bendtner, Walcott all at various stages.. and the goals dry up.. cohesion on the pitch goes, and we get caught on the break on top of having a make shift defence. The way we play demands a great knowledge between each player.. so when a few players are removed it can have a serious affect.

    The good thing now is that all our players are use to playing with various other players. So next season we have the benefit of having the options, and the players who get drafted in will know their role well while the 1st teamers will know their game inside out.

  35. Arshavin – – Chamakh – – Van Persie
    – – – Diaby – Song – Fabregas – – –
    Clichy – Vermalen – Djourou – Sagna
    – – – – – – – – Almunia – – – – – – – – –

    Vela – – – – Bendtner – – – – Walcott
    – – – Nasri – Ramsey – Rosicky – – –
    Gibbs – ? ? ? ? – Campbell – Eboue
    – – – – – – – – Fabianksi – – – – – – – – –

    2 teams there so far for next season,, and still not included Denilson, Eduardo, Wilshire, and any others.

    Most notable areas for improvement is the defence, I know I know you could have all told me that before. Add maybe an experienced keeper to the mix and our squad looks very strong.

  36. Is it conceivable that Song will be drafted into first choice central defence, giving four basic options of Verm, Song, Campbell, Djourou.

    And that we will sign a back-up defender, or keeper, an excellent defensive minded midfielder and an attacker. Rather than … the more predictable route.

    No, probably not … Song is too valuable.

  37. The Vermaelen/Gallas partnership is interesting. I one of those who rated “V” above “G.” And I’m probably wrong – given Finngunn’s post. I think that most of us rate Vermaelen higher because he’s what I’d call a ”spice” player. Younger players are more energetic and the fact that he’s new is a breath of fresh air. Not forgetting his long range shoots! But I agree that he’s still adapting to the EPL – which is much more competitive than the Dutch league – and like wine will get better with time.
    Reply noted Zimpaul.

  38. Viv Anderson made a dodgy investment, w in a property near to my folks. I guess he was trying to keep a link to N5, but it was a silly manouver.

    He wasn’t the only one caught out by the ‘market’ Blues, but really, he should have done some research.

    Fourtunately, AFC look to have built themself a decent new home, just in time.

    Agree 100% with Shotta.
    That zonalmarking link was also put up by OOU during The Great CB Thread.
    It doesn’t highlight kamikazee charges by any other CB’s
    ,
    and the article didn’t show any of the genuine teething errors comitted early on in the season.

    What I enjoyed most about Song in the clip against West Ham I uploaded yesterday, is how he switches position with TV5.

  39. Great article with some very interesting points.
    Mine is this, our goalkeepers.
    In an ideal world nobody would even dare shoot against us, I mean were the arsenal right?
    But, invariably they do and we are “blessed” with two of the worst keepers in the premiership.
    Manuel: can’t catch, can’t command his area, is dodgy at high balls in the box, kicks the ball into the stands, passes the ball into trouble far too often and dropped by his Nike glove endorsement as a result. Good shot stopper, handy at saving penalties.
    Fabianski: rabbit in headlights, no doubting his shot stopping, but can’t do anything else. Send him out on loan for the season toons of the promoted sides (If they’ll risk him) assess after a whole seasons first team (not at our expense)!
    There’s a lot of talk about us buying Hart, but he’s inexperienced too. Shame we didn’t get Given when we had the chance. A keeper should be signed whose 30 plus, Swarzer or Jussi who won’t cost a fortune and have Prem experience so when young Chesney matures in 3-4 years he can step up and keep Manuel on
    the bench. Also play Mannone in the Carling
    cup side. Thanks for reading.

  40. Excellent again YW.

    Also, i wasnt around for commenting on the last few days’ posts and wanted to commend Zimpaul, NJGooner and Consols on their fantastic articles.

    Top quality stuff.

    Cesc will stay. He knows it’s what’s best for him at the mo – and I’m sure he’s desperate to lift a trophy in an Arsenal shirt.

    TV has been awesome this year – apart from a few major lapses which resulted in goals conceded (and even matches lost). As people have said, he is often praised for his all-action style, but he needs to keep his head a bit more when charging for the ball.

    If he and the other CB are communicating as they should, the other CB should be covering for him when he charges out to close an attacker down. This didn’t happen for both goals in the first Barca leg, and it affectively lost us the tie (as well as Messi’s brilliance of course).

  41. @dupsffokcuf happy Indeed I am =))

  42. Yogi:

    Interesting post. Not sure what your definition of tweaking means.

    The club has been forced into a minimalism with regards to our squad depth and forced to put inexperienced players on the pitch. We have been promised by the organization that the stadium was built to give us the financial muscle so we do not have to be minimalistic anymore.

    Most on this site say we may need 1 new CB. That leaves us with TV5, New guy, JD and Sol. Center backs get injured. The injury record of the top 4 clubs this year is clear. Gallas’ injury record is much closer to normal then John Terry’s. JD is coming off season ending knee surgery. No one knows how his knee will respond. None of us even know how good he is. JD’s medical record before his knee injury is closer to Jon Woodgate then John Terry anyway. Sol is 37 and can not play more then 1 game/week. If TV5 tears his ACL and JD’s knee does not respond we are screwed AGAIN. That particular scenario would not represent “bad luck” Not preparing for that scenario would be bad planning. Now that we can afford to have adequate cover, why go without?

    I know everyone on the blog has immense emotional capital invested in the AW minimalism that we have suffered through the last 5 years. However adding 2 more CB will give us a chance to survive the almost certain injuries that occur to every EPL team. No reasonable fan advocates Galacticos but asking for anything less then giving this team its best chance to succeed makes no sense to me.

  43. Roy – if you had to put up with Gomes, Friedel, Shwarzer, even Given and Hart EVERY week, you would see that Almunia is not actually as bad as everyone has been saying. Most ‘fans’ who have been slating Almunia have probably only noticed him when he’s made mistakes. They all make mistakes, but many of the goals conceded are from being exposed by defences.

    He’s not in the top 10 in the world but he is definitely underrated and is definitely in the top 10 in the prem.

    So to say we have the worst GKs in the prem, is way off the mark.

  44. Gibbs. Star quality. I want him back with a fixed foot. Keep Clichy fresh and hungry.

  45. LimparAssist

    I love our gung-ho defending. Charging out and about like a backline of excitable Garrinchas. I think we’re on the verge of showcasing something incredible to the world; a fluid, attacking defence that adapts as one with the team, midfielders swivelling back to plug gaps. It’s organic, it’s progressive, it… isn’t quite perfected yet – but when it is – f*ck me if it isn’t going to be the most radical totaal defensive evolution in the history of the game!

    *Runs flat out the room to hide from Bill behind a potted shrub*

  46. Walking Wounded. News flash!
    Arsenal came 3rd in the PL.
    Which clearly translates as ‘we aren’t that far away’.
    It doesn’t mean ‘we don’t need anyone else’ and it doesn’t mean ‘replace them all’.
    It means ‘it just needs a little bit more in the correct place’.

  47. I agree Bill, we need 2 CBs if Gallas and that Alien-Headed mother leave.

    Zimpaul – looking forward to that too… Do we know if the Welsh Wonder’s gonna be back in action before the season starts?

  48. hahahaha Limpar!

  49. I read something on here the other day saying promote Gibbs because that Gael Clichy had become lacklustre. From where I was watching, Gael was back to his 100% totally committed, no-compromising self! Gibbs needs to do a lot to replace him as no1 no2. But I agree ZP, both have star quality.

  50. Walking Wounded

    Which keepers is he better than then?

    Probably Boaz Myhill!

  51. I suspect Bill you will find Wenger over-prepares on the defence now, in much the way one might say he had ‘over-prepared’ on the midfield with Cesc, Ramsey, Diaby, Denilson, Song, Rosicky, Nasri, Wilshere, Eboue if you get my drift.

    Well, that’s my reading of his comments. Six CBs, including Song in an ad hoc back up role, and minus Sylvestre. That means two purchases, but we might just find one of those is a youth upgrade or purchase. I don’t know enough about how the young guns and reserves are faring in CB dept. except that Nordveit has been in the German first division, and mostly impressive.

  52. bigbrovar, I had a look at your blog. I like it. No idea what you’re going on about, but I like it!

  53. Bill,

    What’s this ‘minimalism’ nonsense you’re banging on about?

  54. When Clichy really got ‘back’, he played the best I’ve ever seen him play, and no doubt in my mind he will be the best LB in the world. With Gibbs relieving him from to time makes me happy.

  55. Ole – Heh, yeah i was wondering that too. It seems Bill has ‘suffered’ because of it, whatever it is…

  56. You can come out now Limpar. That shrub on your head disguise thingy isn’t working. Oh, and Bill says he wants a word.

  57. 1) sign Chamahk, GK, 2 CB
    2) Figure out how to stay organized in the back
    3) A little less bad luck with injuries
    4) Nasri game 2 Porto, Theo game 1 Barca, Midseason Diaby, Denilson 2nd game West Ham as opposed to the invisible versions of those same players.

    None of those are unreasonable expectations. If we can get all 4 we win the league by 10 points and win the CL.

  58. I think Welsh wonder will take six full months after healing, at least that’s what I think AW hinted at. December.

  59. My biggest hope for next season remains for our existing players to play at their true levels, in which case we will in the league or FA Cup.

    Before then I’m sure Arsene will fix major squad issues relating to arrival/departure of players.

  60. Zim making some good points.

    I would be surprised if Arsene made more than 3 signings. Chamakh is obviously one, I think you could be right in your prediction on the other two positions. I would be fine with a good centreback and Chamakh personally but we will see.

    Regarding Yogi’s ‘What is Experience?’ poser, I think the team could benefit with a player who has played on the European stage and had EPL experience for more than a few years. But who that could be I don’t know.

    ChrisGoona
    can I add a 3rd team to that list that whilst would never win the league could win the Carling cup…

    Simpson – – Eduardo – – Wilshire
    – – – Lansbury – JET – Denilson – – –
    Cruise – Bartley – Nortveidt – Eastmond
    – – – – – – – – Manone

    What a CC team that is!!! Obviously you could add first teamers to that mix n’all.

  61. Agreed Bill although I’d go for 1 CB and 1 DM. The league we can win but the CL might be a bit of a stretch

  62. GEO I guess me and the hundreds of people sat around me at the emirates each week are wrong and you are right…

  63. Limpar love your comment regarding defence, can’t be bothered to find out exactly when.

  64. I hate it when people purport to speak for hundreds….

  65. Is everybody happy with Gunnersaurous?

    Well, my niece found him more interesting then the football, but she is four, I’m not convinced he’s the right mascot for AFC.

    In the Stalinesque purges being recommened in some other wise locations, should Gunnersaurous be sent on the long march off to the Gulag too?

    Any suggestions for a replacement?

    I suggest the Air Ambulance from the Royal Free Hospital . It could even have it’s own heli-pad built right over the pitch. Players could be winched up from the centre circle. Great!

  66. els, it would be good to have Barazite in that CC team somewhere. Maybe instead of Simpson,

  67. Well said Geo on Almunia, it’s no coincidence that the main focus of our problems are defence, well defence is not solely the GK’s prob so sort out what’s in front of him and i’m sure you’ll find that Almunia who is one hell of a shot stopper will start looking really good AGAIN.

  68. I’d prefer Simpson myself but Barazite wouldn’t go a miss either.

  69. Ole @ 3:31PM

    You are right. We have some really talented players who should be coming into the age when their ‘youthful inconsistancy” should be going away. If that happens and we get a little less bad luck and a few good additions and we could be great.

  70. Oh, I’m more worried about the more experienced players Bill.

    The likes of Arshavin, Rosicky, Eduardo & even Nasri haven’t played at the level we know they can.

    To illustrate for e.g.;

    Rosicky 2007>Rosicky 2009
    Arshavin 2009>Arshavin 2010
    Eduardo 2008> Eduardo 2010
    Nasri 2010 has a couple of bad habits in the game that don’t make his good performances count as much as they should.

  71. The younger players have generally been better each season than in the previous barring injury issues here or there.

    The reason we were better last season than in the preceding season is because the young players improved.

  72. Ole I think from that list Eduardo has a pretty good excuse, I still think he should be given a little time for his smashed leg. Next season lets judge how he does.

  73. els,

    I’m not being impatient with any of them. I agree with what you said, plus the 4-3-3 completely robbed him of influence in the team.

    In a 4-4-2 he’d have delivered better performances.

  74. Arsenal fans and pundits on Arsenal put the younger players under scrutiny in unfair ways that young players anywhere else are not.

  75. Does BigBrovar know anything at all about Arsenal?? For Fucks sake all he does is post ”First” and cries when he dosnt get it.

    O WOW BBIGBROVAR UVE DONE IT YOUR FIRST, IT MUST ALMOST MAKE UP FOR YOUR CRIPPLING LONELINESS

  76. Ole
    That’s another thing that has to be considered that the 433 was a work in progress. The formation as well as the youngsters (as you point out) will improve.

  77. looking back on that it seems harsh, im just in a bad mood. ill go away.

  78. hey look it els what up els? where’ve u been?

  79. Zap he make up for it in promptness though

  80. els,

    Yes, agreed but it appears he’s not comfortable playing as the main striker in the 4-3-3 which virtually means he won’t be as influential as he can be when he plays there. He won’t get in the team often enough as Arshavin is a better fit for the wide left position, & Nasri, Rosicky, Walcott & even Bendtner look more at home in the wide right position.

  81. This is England

    Terence Mc your last remark is disgusting and you moan about theirs.

  82. Well Yogi did ask for any of the more critical “analysts” around to write up a column for this ACLF, and to date, we are waiting.

    Perhaps Le Grove could jointly put together one coherent piece.

    Naaah …

  83. Zap I think I got a serious case over Doomer Overdose. Also been bit busy with work, that’s where I comment from so you know.

    Hows thing’s?

  84. I would like to see Gooner2 to do a guest post. YW please make that happen, this guy is hilarious.

  85. yeah, al right els.. a bit depressed now theres no arsenal, but there you go, we probably all are.

    …its….so……hard

    Atleast theres the world cup, that will be good.

  86. Ole, I think you could be right there. He might be a casualty of the new formation. But it’s benefited more than it’s the opposite of benefited.

    He’s not lost though I’m sure Wenger can help him adapt.

  87. Ole @ 3:55PM

    “Oh, I’m more worried about the more experienced players Bill.

    The likes of Arshavin, Rosicky, Eduardo & even Nasri haven’t played at the level we know they can.

    To illustrate for e.g.;

    Rosicky 2007>Rosicky 2009
    Arshavin 2009>Arshavin 2010
    Eduardo 2008> Eduardo 2010
    Nasri 2010 has a couple of bad habits in the game that don’t make his good performances count as much as they should.”

    I had not really thought that as much about it as much but you are absolutely spot on again.

    Your absolutely right again. Good point.

  88. Yeah, steady on Terence. It’s just a blog.

  89. “Arsenal fans and pundits on Arsenal put the younger players under scrutiny in unfair ways that young players anywhere else are not.”

    I think you’d find that’s partly AW’s fault, and partly the fault of the youth policy that the club is pursuing. How many times has he told the press how young the squad is, and how full of quality the young uns are. I recall one time when he compared Wilshere to Rooney and I remember thinking why on earth would he do that? Talk about pressure!

  90. Zap I’m really excited bout the world cup this time around. Backing England all the way but would love to see all our boys do well, especially BIG SWISS PHILL. Would be fantastic if he got a great tournament in and managed to gain some confidence, enough to warrant a new deal here. On paper he is the player many are crying out for.

  91. Henristic,

    How is it Arsene Wenger’s fault, pray tell?

    Arsenal’s young players are some of the best players at their age in the World. That’s why most of the Arsenal players going to the World Cup are on the young side.

    They are very good players, so I don’t see what’s wrong with Wenger saying they are good, especially as, as he points out, they’re competing at the top in top competitions.

  92. Nasri has two big faults 1. he is too inconsistent.2.His form away from home is poor

    Diaby: needs Wenger or one of the coaching staff to put him up against the wall and tell him to CONCENTRATE for 90 mins.He continues to switch off in games.

    As for Ashavin the 2nd half of the season he disappeared.His heart is not in the club.

  93. Wow Terence – that’s a bit much.

    You’ve not really done anything other than help their case with that sort of comment!

  94. Just heard we won the fair play league.We have gone soft.Official

    Oh for the days when we had hard men in the team that wouldnt be bullied.When we used to get 10 red cards a season and when we used to win the league

    Fair play league=Bollox

  95. It’s agood job that we have Ole around to bring people to their senses with a good slap when minds start to wander from fact into fantasy. It’s for their own good.

    Some of the stuff written makes you wonder whether anyone actually watched the season unfold. Possibly that are habitual drug users.

    “The tragedy is that man forgets”.

  96. Ole:

    We really need Arshavin to come back towards the player he was in 09. We really need him to play a big role.

    I really do not expect Eduardo to come back. Hope I’m wrong. Chamahk will help us there and actually give us a much bigger threat in the air. Its hard to imagine TR7 ever being the same after all his muscle issues. He is still a good squad player. We are well covered in their positions as long as we do not have another run of injuries. No one can afford to have enough cover for the run injuries we had to our offensive players this year. I never count on good luck but hopefully we can avoid the bad luck.

  97. Bill,

    Do you really thinK Eduardo’s career will end at age 27?

    I doubt it. He will be back.

    My worry is whether he fits in here. Can he adapt is the question.

  98. Jimmy @ 4.36,

    I saw stats for Arshavin’s contribution pre- and post- Russia elimination from the World Cup. It was an amazing contrast. He really dropped, and it seemed the elimination affected him psychologically.

  99. Well Ole, you moaned that pundits put our younger players under scrutiny in unfair ways.

    Maybe I misunderstood what you meant by unfair?

    Arsenal are a top team. So all of our players are put under scrutiny as is the case for other top teams. When AW singles out individual players for praise, or constantly points to how young the team is, he invariably directs even more attention at those players and the media/pundits will follow. Geddit?

  100. In 07/08, the consensus was that we lacked strength in depth.

    Yet we had as strikers; RVP, Adebayor, Eduardo & Bendtner.

    Holding midfielders: Gilberto, Flamini, Song, Diarra, Diaby, Denilson (7 players for 1 position)

    Centre backs: Gallas, Toure, Djourou & Senderos

    Keepers: Lehman, Almunia, Fabianski

    The media conclusion: We had no strength in depth. And nothing since then will convince them otherwise. No matter what the reality is, we have a minimal squad. Bollocks then, bollocks now

    The lesson of this season is that we do have strength in depth. Maybe we do need more quality.

    I am personally beginning to wonder if we won’t need a better squad than Chelski to overhaul them.

    I think we already have a better squad than Man poo. When you think of it, you really struggle to pick any dazzling players in their squad after Rooney…on CURRENT form.

  101. Henristic,

    The young players in Arsenal are more criticised than young players in other teams.

    The scrutiny for example, often seems to obscure how good they actually are.

  102. You wonder how it is our team finished 3rd with so many players that are not that good and were still in the title race inspite of ahost of injuries.

    How did that happen?

    Arsenal!

  103. I think our squad is tops, just a few more additions needed. Dont listen to the pundits, no team wins with all of its best players out, its as simple as that. To think otheriwse would be naive.

  104. would be ridiculous too

  105. I’m pretty certain that Ashavin was carrying an injury of one sort or another for most of the season. He had a badly cut foot around the time RvP was first injured and I don’t think AA got enough rest for it to repair properly. Plus when you’re running oddly (to protect the injured foot) then you put stresses on other parts which leads to other injuries. I suspect that can be said of quite a few of our guys this year.

  106. Guys I think we owe QoS a bit of thanks. She was over at Le Grove defending ACLF from the “insightful” criticism they were launching at us.

    they seem to think Frank runs the site hahah..

  107. OG

    quite true. although its hard for supporters of other teams to be critical of their youth players, because they arent a significant part of the clubs plans.

    soon AW will be seen for the revolutionary he is

  108. Ole, Evra has been very good this season. I wouldn’t want him in place of Clichy or Gibbs, but he has been one of the best LBs around. Whilst Valencia can dissapear, he has been exceptional on occassion. Probably just about more consistent than some of our lads this year.

  109. Walking Wounded

    Steady NJ

    Le Grove won’t be happy with that post you put on their blog.

    For one very few would understand it and for the others, you are expressing a view against theirs.

    OMG.

  110. im deep in the trenches WW

    i was trying to wind them up to get their attention. it worked haha

  111. Bob,

    It seems we’ll meet you in the finals:)

  112. Walking Wounded

    It is an interesting sport though…

    Throwing an AKB comment onto Le Grove and watching the Piranhas come out and get all angry and agitated.

    I think they should add a blood pressure monitor to their website

  113. Looks that way Ateeb.

    I had a feeling that you might have the measure of the Aussies this time. Great batting display on your part so far. Overconfidence on their part.

    You could improve your running though.

  114. I had that feeling as well, but you never know. The team is too unpredictable, I won’t be surprised if they all get out around 130 mark. But doesn’t seem like it today, they need to keep it ticking. And go for the bigger shots in the last 3 overs. So yes, agree about the running.

  115. I have always found it difficult to have a sensible discussion on here, as well as on some other sites,maybe because I am not pro or anti Wenger,but first and foremost an Arsenal fan of many years standing.

    Today I read the comment from Terence on here re LG, and I have to say that I am somewhat surprised it even got published. Disgracful, is putting it mildly.

  116. But notice how nobody condoned it, Kelsey.

    This blog is only moderated part time. As soon as Yogi spots it, I’m sure he’ll take it down.

  117. “The difference between people’s attitude to Vermaelen as opposed to Gallas is another of those perverse dynamics with Arsenal fans. Gallas has barely made mistakes all season. Yet, if you listened to media (and Arsenal fans) he’s more like a spare tyre.”

    It’s interesting the effect injury has on the reputations of different players. Djourou, Ramsey, and Gibbs have practically been elevated to first choice players by injury, which they never were when fit. Gallas, on the other hand, who has always been a first choice player, has been reduced by a few weeks absence to Vermaelen’s comedy sidekick.

    “And Yogi, couldn’t agree more about arsenal.com’s decision to cover the transfer speculation. What a heap of steaming w*nk.”

    I wonder if anyone of importance at Arsenal ever looks at the website. If they did, I think they would be dismayed.

  118. I don’t think that Mr McGovern could claim to being a regular poster here.

  119. Also interesting the choice of words that Limpar thinks require an asterisk to save us from their full, ahem, impact.

    I can’t think of any others that he has spared us.

  120. Mr McGovern has posted once before, curiously enough around this time last year. And that one ended up in the spam bin.

    Draw your own conclusions….

  121. He may well not be a regular poster on here, as myself, nor am I a regular poster on LG, but anyway I believe the offensive post has been removed,so at least something has been achieved.

  122. What is your point, Kelsey?

    That Mr Mcgovern is an idiot, with which I believe we would all agree?

    I suspect rather that you are trying to score a point against this site for some reson using him as your pretence.

  123. Always a pleasure to see the Aussies panicking and misfielding.

    What happened to their fabled Gr*t?

  124. consolbob, no one is trying to score points as far as I am aware. I read the daily post on here every day and have already stated my reason for posting.Think what you like,I don’t recall saying anything anti about ACLF. Kindly, don’t twist my words.

  125. I suggest you read your posts again Kelsey. Your meaning is quite clear.

    Did you enjoy Watson’s ‘performance’ Finsbury? Always good to see a thouroughly pissed off Aussie.

  126. Watson’s day has just got even better!

  127. Ole:

    Eduardo’s career is not over. I do not think we can count him or TR7 for significant contributions. If they do give us something that is great but I think we are covered as well as reasonably possible if they do not. I really hope Eduardo can find that magic touch again, but like you not sure where he fits in anymore.

  128. Shane Bond announced his retirement today …though
    Aamer is a very exciting fast bowler. Better then Watson, heh.

    Good for those of us who love to see Tests that the ‘specialists’ are still there. What a talent…18!

    Flintoff took until his mid-twenties to come through; injuries and pies got in the way there.

  129. Ole @ 5:10PM

    “I am personally beginning to wonder if we won’t need a better squad than Chelski to overhaul them.

    I think we already have a better squad than Man poo. When you think of it, you really struggle to pick any dazzling players in their squad after Rooney…on CURRENT form.”

    Agree on both counts. Quality wise this squad can compete with anyone. I think Poliziano once said that “winning begets winning”. Once this squad wins and develops a real self belief it will fill up the trophy case. That first win will be the toughest and your first point above about Chelsea is why I think we need to use whatever resources we have avaialable to get that first win. Do as much as we can to take luck out of the equation.

  130. Shane Bond announced his retirement today, but looking at the 18 year old Aamer, I don’t think he’ll be missed. The specialists do have there place in 20/20 C-Bob!
    Amazing skill & strength to bowl like that, at 18….

  131. Haddin is the one I’m worried about. Need to contain the Aussies, stop the singles and all.

  132. Yogi and PZ:

    Do you think the website is printing the transfer speculation just to show how many things come up in the media and hopefully people will realize just how ridiculous the silly season becomes. If they see how ridiculous it becomes then maybe they will not take it so seriously. A bit of reverse psychology?

  133. Well, there you go Ateeb. Worries over.

  134. A captain’s inning, eh? The worst performances by an Aussie captain in a tournament for quite a while.

  135. Walk in the park from here.

    As long as Pakistan remember that when you get an Aussie down, you have to keep kicking him hard.

    Otherwise he gets up and kicks the shit out of you.

  136. Bill

    No, they just want the hits.

    YW

  137. What did Terence say ?

  138. Exactly my thought, Muppet.

    Can’t stop worrying as long as these two have got the bats in their hands. F***** Aussies.

  139. More or less the same as he did last year.

    YW

  140. There seem to be some who are trying to stoke a new ‘blog war’ over the past few days. I suspect he was one of those, Muppet.

    Not worth troubling yourself over. A complete twat.

  141. And what did he say last year? Any links, Yogi?

  142. Keep kicking!

  143. Cheers cb. I get the picture.

  144. You up for a blog war, Muppet? Been a while since some doomers were slain. We could have our jobs back, its no fun being unemployed:P

  145. Not a banker anymore Ateeb?

  146. That would be fun Ateeb.

    I have to restrain myself though, as there’s generally no point in getting into a pissing contest with a skunk, as they say.

    You have to laugh. Pedro comes up with this idea that you are allowed to post, providing you don’t abuse. What he forgot to say is that you have to be ultra polite, and back up everything you say with reason. Just like they do of course. Frankly, I got bored with all that, and resorted to type. A spade is a spade after all. So I was banned… again.

  147. I think I started reading/posting here just after a blog war, or at least some kind of e-skirmish. Was it with Le Grove then?

  148. Nope it’s in the spam bin from where there is no return.

  149. Still a banker, Bob. Was referring to my unemployment as a doomer slayer. Kicking them, they keep getting up.

    Muppet,

    Hahaha. I haven’t bothered checking if I’m banned there for a year now. So they’re providing reasons? That could be worth a check. Any reasons for signing Melo, yet?

  150. Gallas has been unusually quite for an Arsenal player when it comes to transfers. If I’m not mistaken he hasn’t made any comments regarding his intentions? As oppose to the likes of Flamini, Adebayor, Hleb, or our very political captain Cesc.

  151. Ateeb,

    Actually, Geoff didn’t provide any reasons. He just doctored by posts and put me in moderation. Usual tactics.

    Melo ? Haven’t seem him mentioned to be honest.

    Actually agree with a lot of posters today – YW, Ole, Chrisgoona, who are stressing the need to make sure the good work is not undone with new arrivals, and to keep those to a quality minimum.

  152. Worried now, your thoughts Bob?

  153. Bill,

    If those 2 lads, TR7 & EDS can’t be counted upon then we’ll need to buy 2 players to fulfil their roles. And since the current mood is to spend big and by ‘proven’ players……

    That’s another £30M or more we’ll have to spend. On top of World Class keeper, 2 centre halves, a striker, a winger and ‘proper cover for Song’.

    Say no to gradualism. Revolution is us.

  154. Lolz. Oh well. Didn’t understand why give the last over to a spinner. Surely, Razzaq or someone else could have done a better job.

  155. Well, you bottled it again, Ateeb.

    I told you. keep kicking them!

  156. The thing is Ole, what grounds do we have to think that EDS and TR7 can be relied upon?

    On the evidence of the run in, they weren’t there or trusted to be there.

    Can Arsene take that gamble?

  157. Told you the team is too unpredictable. The game should have finished 3 overs back. Bad decisions by Afridi in my opinion. Razzaq should have bowled the last over. Well then, it shall be an entertaining final. Goodluck, then.

  158. Sorry to hear about your employment status, Ateeb.

  159. Well, Afridi has not had a good Tournament.

    I was concerned for your players when I first saw that the entire team had ‘Boom Boom’ plastered all over their kit.

    Hubris.

  160. C-Bob,

    Do we truly need 5 players then?

  161. That’s Boom Boom Pepsi for you.

  162. shotta-gunna

    What did Terrence say? I vaguely remember his screed from last year.

    Blog war? Nah. That whole Ade contremps last summer and his eventual despatch by Wenger was sobering. ACLF should stick to being a supporters site. Let the other fools squabble for hits.

    PS: YW I agree with you. Arsenal.com should be ashamed. That transfer link is there soley to generate hits. Gazidis should have it taken down. They are cheapening the club.

  163. I hope not Ole.

    I am just responding to your point made in response to Bill.

    It made me think. Is there any reason to believe with confidence that we can rely on those two particular players next year.

    When we needed them at the back end of last season EDS was not picked, while TR7 did not perform as well as we needed him too. They are senior players, expereinced Internationals.

    Was it fitness? I don’t know. Can Arsene?

  164. I emailed the club to complain, I’m so disgusted. Maybe a few more should do the same.

  165. Ole,

    If Gallas stays, I doubt if we need more than one CB. Really hope he does. Chamakh is already on the way in. That leaves the so called goalkeeping crises, which I really don’t buy.

    Rosicky and Eduardo, won’t make the first X1, but surely they are good enough to deputize for the likes, of Arshavin, Nasri, and Theo. However at times we have lacked the creativity needed in the end of the season. But I doubt Arsene will bring in an attacking midfielder.

  166. Consolsbob, Rosicky was injured towards the end of the season and Eduardo was recovering from a broken toe, so maybe Arsene thought it wasn’t worth risking him when there was not a lot left to play for and he would have been rusty anyway.

    We’ll have to wait to see what Arsene decides, but if you consider how long it has taken Diaby to recover from his serious injury, Arsene might think that a fresh start with a full pre-season after a summer of rest and recuperation, could do Eduardo the world of good.

  167. shotta-gunna

    Prior to this I mainly went to Arsenal.com for confirmation of a rumor/development posted by the tabloid sites. Judging from my behavior, I can see that this limits the number of hits from the casual surfer trolling for rumors (e.g. Cesc going to Barca). But sounder heads among Arsenal execs should realize that there are other ways of building loyalty. ACLF’s readership I am sure keeps growing and has a hard core of posters.

    Using typical MBA jargon, do the content managers at Arsenal.com know anything about cheapening a brand?

  168. shotta-gunna

    Statement rather than question They do know a lot about cheapening a brand.

    Footballistically: Do they know anything about upholding the values of the club? If the club loses value to its supporters, then we are truly effed.

    Eduardo and TR-7: I really hope they improve over last year or else. My heart yearns for them but my brain is telling me different. However Passenal noted their inkjuries which I was unaware of. Those are mitigating circumstances.

  169. C-Bob, Ateeb,

    I very much wonder if we can trust them. If we can’t then we need to replace the influence those two experienced players should have in the team.

    I have a feeling that Rosicky will feel that at 29, time is running our for him, and he’ll be desperate to come back to his best and ‘win things’. I know he cares a lot about the Czech national team, and he’ll want to do well on that front too.

    I’m hoping for the best

  170. We should start planning without Cesc. Ramsey, Wilshere, Nasri and Lansbury are all capable of playing that role. We can’t really blame a player wanting to leave especially if he hasn’t had the opportunity to play alongside better players but average ones, Denilson , Diaby and their types.

  171. Shotta, they are ‘listening to the fans’ and giving them what they want. The trouble is they are listening to the ones who shout the loudest, who are not necessarily the most representative of the majority.

    Arsenal can hardly complain about their players being linked with other clubs if they are indulging in the same behaviour by giving these rumours the oxygen of publicity. If it’s hits they are looking for, I doubt these transfer rumours would generate that many as they are just regurgitating the same crap that has already appeared elsewhere on the internet. I think most people would visit an official website for official news not gossip and rumour.

  172. Well, that is the scenario that my heart says to follow Passenal. It may very well be correct. I really hope it is!

    It’s just that my head says that we believed that EDS would be fully fit last season. Seemingly he wasn’t and therefore it’s still speculative as to whether he can be the same player he was. Ditto TR7.

    Can Arsene continue to give the benefit of the doubt?

    We often say how ruthless he is. I will trust his judgement, I always have. I don’t see the player every day like he does, nor do I have his ability!

    From where I’m sitting though. They are both huge risks. Can we afford that?

  173. Passenal

    Eduardo and Rosicky can’t be successful here. Eduardo and Rosicky are not physically suitable for the EPL and will continue to carry injuries. Arsene is wasting money keeping them

  174. Well, Ole, Shotta, I see that we are thinking along similar lines.

  175. Oh, just fuck off Howard.

  176. Typical extremist political opportunism.

    Piggyback your completely nonsensical and disgusting views onto any debate that serves.

    Crawl back to your sad little meetings or, more likely, your tatty little on line mates.

  177. I agree with CB. Fuck off Howard

  178. Sell

    Eduardo-Its over
    Almunia-useless
    Rosicky-waste of resources
    Sylvestre-useless
    Gallas-bad attitude and injury prone
    Diaby-no commitment
    Denilson-we were deceived-not fit to wear the shirt
    Fabianski-useless
    Traore-deceived-hopeless
    Senderos-waste of money

  179. Same here Cb. It’s sad how both player’s careers have been shaken a part by Injuries, in the same year. Prior to which they were playing extremely well, and worthy to be declared indispensable at that time. But it’s been more than 2 years now, and we have yet to see them play as they did before the injuries.

  180. Adam,

    Despite your ill informed analysis of each player that you commented. The suggestion to get rid of 9-11 players of the first team squad is extremely stupid. Grow the fuck up.

  181. The thing is Ateeb, much of me lives in a world where Eduardo went on the become one of the greatest strikers the premiership ever saw and TR7 ran the midfield like a striking clock.

    I still want to see that world.

  182. Sell

    J*mas – fucker
    Howard – spanner
    William – plonker
    Stu – junkie
    Arse21 – waster
    Adam – moron

  183. Adam

    Sell:

    Your computer as the technology is wasted on you as your comment proved.

    YW

  184. shotta-gunna

    Can YW simply unmask the new Howard or whoever? Disgusting.

    Given the number of forwards and wide-midielders that are on the current squad, and the coming of Chamack, it is very difficult to see both Eduardo and TR-7 making the the 1st XI consistently. Beyond that that, I refuse to speculate publicly.

  185. Bob,

    That’s what I was hoping would happen last season. I hope it happens in the next one.

  186. Agreed as usual Ateeb.

    Heart.

    Mind?

  187. I know what you mean about heart and mind bob, but I guess it depends on whether they are prepared to accept a squad role, filling in as and when or whether they want to be playing regularly. I doubt either of them could be relied on as first choice, but haven’t people been saying we need to hang onto experience? I doubt that Arsenal can afford to have a ‘clear out’ as some are calling for, so we have to prioritise. Clearly the defensive losses will be greater and more pressing. If we can improve our injury record and players like Arshavin play to their ability, we can find room for TR7 and EDS9 until the youngsters are ready to step up on a more consistent basis?

  188. How about one of the more Supportive regulars. That has the skills with thems words. Does a comprehensive post on how our breeding of players compares to that of signatures for our club and other rival teams.

    I can’t be arsed and it probably wouldn’t be readable. But I would like somebody else do the work for me to read it.

    O.K go.

  189. Reasonable, Passenal. I suspect that you are about right in your analysis.

    To pick up your point, that does leave our first choice front line and midfield short on ‘experience’ though.

    Room for a surprise?

  190. Consolsbob, I think it’s like Yogi says in his article, what is experience? RVP/Bendtner/Arshavin are experienced in different respects and when fit and free from injury, a combination of any 3 from Song, Denilson, Diaby, Cesc, Nasri has what it takes and are very experienced in the Arsenal playing style and in the P and CL. Eduardo and Rosicky just add to that overall experience. Unless Arsene can find top quality replacements within his budget, why throw all that away? I may be proven totally wrong, but I’m just exploring reasons why he might want to add to what we’ve already got rather than replace. Numbers-wise in case of injury we would be no better off and you never know how well the new player will adapt, even if he is from another PL team.

  191. Passenal, Bob,

    Wouldn’t it be better to shift the debate over experience to some other platform, where we could take into account the players that can actually make a difference on their own to a team such as Cesc and RVP do, for Arsenal? Surely those two are exceptional players, and would be unfair to compare them with the likes of Diaby, Rosicky, Eduardo e.t.c. But one can acknowledge, that on current form both Rosicky and Eduardo, haven’t stepped up in a big way where they can contribute with dazzling performances consistently. So it’s not much about experience but rather the quality of player or how powerful a tool he is for a team. Are we one or two short of those sort of players? And I know the importance of team work e.t.c, and you can’t have too many of these sort of players in a team, but given how RVP’s career has been plagued with injury, maybe we’ve been a bit short on that front. Just curious about your views.

  192. arsenal must spend money on experienced players that are able to rear a young arsenal squad. players like denilson, clichy, and co. do have premiership experience, but one wonders whether they’ve been able to learn how to lose. sometimes one has to see how other deal with losing in order in order to understand how to recover. if arsenal finally invests on experience, they will be able to compete for the title next year.

  193. Ateeb the type of player of which you speak is few and far between. I can only think of Torres and Villa who might be available and although we have some money now, I doubt we could compete for them against Madrid, Barca, Inter, chelski or man c.

  194. Ole:

    No I do not want to spend another 30M on replacements for Eduardo and TR7. Chamakh is Eduardo’s “replacement” and We have lots of good midfielders. The boss can not realistically expect 15 – 20 goals from Eduardo and 28 starts from TR7. That is what I mean by counting on them.

    I love Eduardo as a player but if we really need him to score a lot of goals next year I suspect we will be in trouble.

  195. I think if you look carefully and critically to style, and quality of tackling of both Gallas and Vermalaen you’ll find that Gallas is better in terms of techniques of tackling and positional play, whereas Vermalaen is better in anticipating and he’s quicker so that covers for his mistakes. But Gallas’s tackling is world class and his cool. Vermalaen reminds me of Toure in the invincible year when he tackled with ferocity and aggressiveness that he’s young age allowed him to do, but the older he became the less of good defender he became. Vermalaen first year was fantastic but he also did a lot of simple mistakes sometimes A LA CLICHY and didn’t performe well in the abscense of Gallas. They’re both good and understood each other well and with a world class goalkeeper and more understanding with defensive midfielders they’ll improve as partnership. I agree with those of you saying that Gallas is underrated and deserved better from our fans because he was one of those rare players who played the matches like their lives depended on it.

  196. Passenal,

    Perhaps the world cup might throw a new entrant into those kind of players category. And I agree there aren’t too many out there that can be brought it.

    Osman,

    Agree with you, regarding Gallas’s importance to the team.

  197. a fungus-coated right hand

    2010-2011: The season of the famous Vermaelen-Djourou partnership that allowed the fewest goals in the Premier League, allowing Arsenal to become the first ever champions with such a low total of goals scored. Remember, you heard it here first!

  198. Re your latwer posts last night Ateeb, I think that is a valid topic of debate which I touched on in my slightly longer than normal post on Tuesday! Not experience per se, rather influence.

    Nasri could well become one of those players. Arshavin is now, if he performs. Ideally, yes, we would always want another player that can change a game, take it by the scruff of the neck and kill it.

  199. ‘later’. I was up early this morning.

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