Stone Cold Friday: The Agony Of Being An Arsenal Fan

Whilst Barcelona contemplate adding another €100m to their existing €420m debt (their own figures, not mine), Darius is giving you his last thoughts before heading off to a summer break…

In recent times, it’s hard to recall whether there’s been a close season that Arsenal fans can breathe easy while the team roller coaster is serviced at London Colney in preparation for the next ride. The summer is as nerve racking as the squeaky bum’ moments that litter the season up and down the land.

It’s times like these when you wouldn’t be surprised to find out that a straw poll with the Samaritans reveals extra calls attributed to Arsenal; or productivity at work for companies up and down the country is doubly affected just like the Monday’s after an Arsenal defeat.

If Arsenal were in the play ground, we would be the pretty looking snazzy kid who gets bullied by the ”well ‘ard” reprobates who throw their weight around simply because they can. Let’s face it, that’s what this week feels like for most fans.

‘We’re not even past the first week of the end of the domestic season and the bastards are at it again’. At least that’s the sub-text you can etch out of every Gooner’s face as they switch on the Sports TV news, or flips to the back pages or tune into the radio on the way to work.

Arsenal this, Arsenal that, Laporta this, Barcelona that, the Emirates this, Arsène Wenger that; it’s relentless, and there’s no breathing space to even fart. Walk into a taxi, at work, down the pub, or while waiting for a kebab – ”so he’s finally leaving, huh?” they ask with that smug face that could only be from a Tottenham fan.

And yet down at Highbury House, they take a vow of silence proclaiming that the higher ground will always triumph over diatribe and rumour. All the while, the filthy long arm of the media bully machine is shoved down the throats of Arsenal fans across the world with their hearts and emotions mercilessly yanked out in the shameless pursuit of ratings and web traffic in this 24 hour ‘dog eat dog’ media world.

This is a media machine that has no value for integrity as they trample over us mere mortals in their chase for sensationalism. They operate in a culture that would have Latin scholars refer to them collectively as Bastardi Maximus.

But then yet again, we find ourselves in familiar nail biting territory. It really doesn’t matter which player they want to hound out of Arsenal this season – it’s summer time and Arsenal is fair game.

You’d think we’d learnt something by now about dealing with transfer shenanigans, for the first ever recorded shameless poaching and tapping up of Arsenal players happened 119 years ago. And that was Derby County wanting to steal our talent from right under our noses.

Barcelona, Derby County – does it really matter? It’s agonizing and relentless as summer after summer, transfer window after transfer window – the wolves are at the door seeking to destabilize the Arsenal, and year after year, we wait with bated breath, hoping and willing that it’s another case of faecal matter being stirred by them lot.

Every summer is like that moment in limbo where nothing seems to move and certainty is only guaranteed when those punks up Wembley Way officially close the transfer window. It’s like that down time you’re subjected to when you take an HIV test and they give you a number and tell you to come back for the result in 7 days.

Damn that’s a long 7 days, time that you’re ill prepared to deal with; time that you’re forced to contemplate and rationalize all the sexual encounters you’ve had since losing your virginity, especially those of the ’Coyote Ugly’ variety. Those damn 7 days as you wait for that window to close.

Boy oh boy, the summer’s here.

But then again I ask myself. Why is it that Arsenal always seems to be targeted with this unwelcome destabilizing drama? How come no one goes for the talisman of other clubs of our ilk? Well, the lesser Ronaldo was a different case and even though Ferguson swore he would never sell a virus, let alone a player to Real Madrid, a very fat cheque made it very comfortable for him.

My sense is that it has to do with the old adage – ’if they don’t like you that much, then you must be doing something right’.

Arsenal has something they always seem to want, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. The impression I got from my various forays into civilization this week (I’ve been spending some time in the bundux lately) is that Arsenal are in crisis and Armageddon has landed at N5.

Arsenal should have learned the lessons with Titi Henry of elevating one single player to a demigod status, and my only disappointment will be if that lesson is repeated.

It’s just a shame that we have to wait 22 days for England to be bum rushed by Landon Donovan and his boys in the 3 Lion’s first encounter down south for some alternative news cycles to occupy these cretins.

And remember, if some shady looking Spanish geezer asks for a £1 coin to buy a coffee, do him a favour and go into Starbucks yourself on his behalf. Otherwise, that debt mountain may just be €1 less…’til Tomorrow.

Posted on May 21, 2010, in Arsenal, Football, Premier League, Premiership, Soccer, Transfer Gossip and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 274 Comments.

  1. *

  2. perrygrovesworld

    Agreed.

    By the way the best thing about your blog is that in the list of other Arsenal sites there is no mention of Arsenal Action. I applaud you for your sound taste!
    😉

  3. with Fabragas leaving Do you reakon Van Persie will still be at Arsenal by August

  4. This is my favourite Arsenal blog. Good stuff.

  5. Spot on Sir.

  6. @Aicher: I don’t see why everyone is afraid of RvP leaving, he really and truely loves Arsenal. Hell we have had multiple news stories recently of him trying to get other Dutch players to join Arsenal.

  7. Seriously f*ck em all, these warted smug media toads, leeches poncing off our talent and class. I love Cesc to bits but he has unfortunately forced our hand, his thinly veiled skirt hike has caught Barca on the hop, they genuinely weren’t expecting this from Cesc this year, hence the fannying about and no concrete offer, they haven’t budgetted for it. None of us want Cesc hurt but the rep of our club is at stake and we gotta stand firm and play this out. At least 50 mill or p*ss the f*ck off you tapping up sons of putas.
    So Laporta is coming over is he? Seriously can we please make him walk over the pitch and turn the sprinklers on the oily gobshite?

  8. Great post)

  9. Malaysiangunner

    Darius

    I agree with the gist of you blog. But Thew question I ask, have we replace Titi demigodness with Cesc demigodness and even one pertinent question that most at this site refuse to ask, is AW the other demigod. I will be flamed for this but in view of how last season fared it is a valid question.

    No Fear!!! We Are The Arsenal!!!

  10. matt foley (usa)

    bum rushed by landon donovan et al…totally brilliant

  11. Mr Wenger shoul find Cesc Replacement player as soos as posible

  12. Since Cesc is not leaving we don’t have to find a replacement for him.

    Barcelona can’t afford him now, so in a few years their debt mountain will increase and then they definitely won’t be able to get him.

  13. great post

  14. Mongolian Gooner

    Great Post, Darius.

    I liked the comparison of HIV test. Seems hilarious.

    I just want to say, may Fabregas bleed Barca but he breathes Arsenal. Like Titi, Van Persie and Clichy he became fan of Arsenal.

    And Once a Gooner, Always a Gooner as our demigod Thierry Daniel Henry said.

  15. Great post Darius. Barcelona have a huge debt and yet it’s smaller than Real Madrid’s or even manure’s. All those debts look big to gooners but apparently good financial sense seems to be the preserve of Arsenal and enforced in the German and French leagues. Barcelona can take on more debt as stupid as it sounds. Apparently financial common sense is in short supply when it comes to football!

  16. It’s only three more weeks. And the WC.

    I’ve been listening to K’naan and Bisbal’s Waving flag to get in the World Cup mood.

    Lack of football is killing me. Watching old matches from the internet to cover my need for football.

    hehe

  17. Why do Barcelona want Cesc so badly? It’s because they feel it’s time to replace Xavi. Xavi is 30 this year. Guardiola was 30 when he left them for Brescia. Deco was 31 when he left for Chelsea. Ludovic Guily was 31 when he left them for Roma. There appears to be a trend here. A midfield maestro heading thirty backed up by another in his mid twenties.They feel that the Xavi/Iniesta combination is coming to an end and has to be replaced by a Iniesta/Fabregas combination. They are testing our resolve and if they fail this year they’ll be back next season having unruffled us!

  18. Do you think if we win something this upcoming season Fabregas will leave us for Barca?

  19. In my opinion .. weve been sleeping on some transfermoney for quite some time. My suggestion is we use a portion of it to have Laporta and any catalan running their mouth about our players seriously beaten. It is waaay overdue.

  20. The previous post was a bit recist .. Naturally we should have everybody beaten not just catalans.

  21. Lettraggad you’re sick! And I mean sick as in ha ha and not sick as in peculiar.

  22. If you start with the proposition that Arsenal are fully in control of this situation having suffered utter disprespect from Barcelona Rovers and Unreal Madrid in the past then there is no need for concern at all. Just cast your eyes down the NewsNow list of references and it is patently obvious that no-one knows what is happening, least of all Barcelona Athletic……except Arsenal. AW and those closest to him know exactly what is going on and are playing Barcelona Town like a fish on a line.

    …..Arsemal…..

    Btw the HIV analogy was ugly.

  23. …or even Arsenal…that is ARSENAL

  24. Fuck off Tony Gale.

  25. Tony Gale : Arsene Wenger desperately needs experienced players to win the league.

    Sky Interviewer: Which ones exactly ?

    Tony Gale : (laughing)..err.. you should have given me more preparation time.

    WHAT A WANKER

  26. …and Perry Groves…again…really blotting his copy book. Flirting with the Daily Wail’s ugly sister the (London) Evening Standard. I put London in brackets because it is obvious that the ES and the Metro fucking hate London and are probably written by people who live more than a hundred miles north of the CAPITAL….

  27. Didn’t want to be anywhere near all the Cesc speculation because i know the transfer won’t happen. Only decided to comment when twitchy down the road on seven sisters commented. We hold the ace and will not be bullied into selling, except they pay 60-70 odd millions. Barca product my a*s!!!

  28. Intrigued by the rumours that we might be offered Chryhrynskyi by Barca in part exchange for Cesc……..with Szczesny in goal we would undoubtedly be top of the PL in terms of consonants/vowel ratio – but not sure if there is currently a trophy awarded for this. (I see LG are pushing this one, but the number of consonants has stumped their spell check – nevertheless him and YaYa plus some cash……might be interesting)

  29. Interesting stat: Last season, Cesc Fabregas scored four more goals in the league than all of Barcelona’s midfield players (that’s Yaya, Keita, Biscuits, Xavi, Iniesta) put together. He got 15, and they racked up 11.

  30. Big Johan.

    Who actually comes up with that crap of “we might be offered this or that player in exchange”. How the fuck would they know….these cretins.

  31. He’s big and ugly apparently – so I wouldnt dismiss him out of hand (Chr…… rather than Yaya) – and they clearly wasted a huge amount of money on him (like Ibra whose main role this season seems to have been to score against us unfortunately)

  32. Big Johan.

    My point is that all these punks who write that this player has been linked to this club, or this club are thinking of offering this player in exchange have no cotton picking idea of what is happening. They want you to think they do, but they’re just as clueless as the next guy down the street.

    Take the case of Cesc for example.

    1. Fact: Barcelona have made no official enquiry or offer for Cesc.
    2. Fact: Arsenal haven’t placed Cesc in the shop window
    3. Fact: Cesc is nowhere near a Boseman to consider demanding a transfer without committing professional suicide.

    Even if Barcelona could afford Cesc (as well as all the other names they say they want to buy), I’d suggest that Manchester City will literally give them a run for their money if Arsenal were to agree to make Cesc available.

    Those who concoct stories of player exchanges based on their Championship manager video game experience are no better than the likes of Tony Gale who spew trash picked up from the cliche sand box behind the pundit’s sofa – “Arsenal need experience” and yet the punk can’t provide concrete definition of what that experience should look like.

  33. BUllShit Article!

  34. There’s no agony in being an Arsenal fan. Even the lows are highlights of our lives.

  35. clockendrider

    Darius,
    Re the media BS, how about the link below for fairness.
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/leagues/premierleague/tottenham/7744297/Tottenham-redesign-new-stadium-to-preserve-listed-buildings.html

    So let’s get this straight: when Arsenal were going through the various stages of applying for planning permission, the media represented it in a wholely negative light. Yey somehow according to the turd who wrote this, it’s a positive thing they the lesser lights had planning permission refused. You couldn’t make it up….

  36. LOL CER….

    I’ll be more impressed if they actually move into a new stadium in 2 years.

  37. Ole Gunner

    You are a Type of Person that watches too much Days of our Lives.But I stil think that being an Arsenal Fan can be very frustrating at times.

  38. Fuck off gooner2

  39. Ole

    I was at Wigan and Blackburn away and it was like visiting the dentist.When Arsenal are shit it is not fun

  40. LimparAssist

    “We are not going to pay more than we think is normal and logical. You have to take into account what he has won and the needs of both clubs. There are various ways of coming to the right price for a player who was raised by Barcelona.”

    He’s 23 and he’s won the FA Cup and the European Championships. That’s more than Maradona had won at Boca when you broke the World transfer fee record on him, it’s more than Gullitt had won and it’s more the Baggio had won when Milan and Juventus broke it again… Joanne Laporta, you cunt.

    Dangerous game you’re playing, Joanne. By your ‘logic’ if Cesc Fabregas helps Spain to lift the World Cup this July – which they are favourites to do, his price is going through the roof. Which is bad news for you because you can’t afford him now…you cunt.

  41. I think i’m going to switch off for the summer and just see what we have come 2010/11 season, that would be so much easier.

    Ole that’s nice, your right. As Darius says, ’if they don’t like you that much, then you must be doing something right’. We obviously have something that they want and that’s because we have a great team. That we are lucky to be supporters of, all this speculation is a compliment. No matter what comes out of this we’ll be fine. May be a set back but that’s all.

    Arsenal!

  42. Frank

    I met Perry Groves last week what a top bloke he is Gooner through and through and he said he believes Wenger wont even sign a keeper!!!!!!!!!!!God i hope he is wrong

  43. Gerry

    I Think That we are already shit.But someone like ole( would not agree with that point.)

  44. I must admit that it saddens me to see/hear these former Arsenal stars running their mouths and slating this great club that made them stars in the first place.

  45. OneOFUs interesting stat you posted. Seems one really great player can make a whole lot of difference in a team. Without Messi it appears that even our half injured squad would have beaten Barca. Also shows that when you have a great player, like we did with Henry and now with Fabregas, you’ve got to make the most out of him!

  46. gooner2. If we are shit as you state, then maybe you are supporting the wrong team!

  47. DFG

    I have been supporting arsenal for quite along time know.And I have’nt state that arsenal are Shit.

  48. I love this quote “There’s no agony in being an Arsenal fan. Even the lows are highlights of our lives”. Ole Gunner, fabulous.

    Gooner2 and Gerry your lack of support and confidence in our great club is incredibly stupid. You simply don’t belong. Not worthy, are you?

    News flash … Cesc is stoying, no he’s gaying, oh no can’t be that he must be stoying then. Well, either way it’s confirmed. It’s definate. You know what? It ain’t an issue. The issue is the team, who, give or take a player or three, is intact, and thay are going to write their own indelible history.

    Man, it’s a privilege to be an Arsenal supporter!

  49. Oh… looks like we’re not going in for Stephane M’bia then. The Daily “Hurrah for the Blackshirts” Mail has reported it.

  50. DFG

    Until we become a facist state where free speech is banned fans and ex-players are allowed to voice their opinion.Its called free speech.

    As a fan who travels home and away supporting the team spending lots of money in these hard times i have every right to give a view different from the “sun shines out of Arsene’s arse brigade”.The performances at Wigan and Blackburn were unacceptable

  51. Gerry

    As I have freedom of speech also, your a complete toss pot. I think many will back up my opinion of you too. 😉

  52. I also like to make use of my right of free speech and call you a c*nt, Gerry.

  53. Good lord the doomers are out to play.

    Never heard so much whinging, crying and bitching, supporting Arsenal is a blessing. We have a great team, a great manager, a great staidum, a nd a great club which stands for everything that is right.

    The ungreatful bitching people who call themselves supporters… — NEWS JUST IN …. YOU ARE NOT SUPPORTERS!

  54. No one said those results were acceptable Gerry. They were not. But what is acceptable is the strength of this club, its team, what in is doing to nurture and play the best football, its influence in the EPL and increasingly world football.

    Wenger has never been out of the top four, and secured 14 consecutive champion league runs. Wow! And that’s just for starters.

    Makes you proud, I’m sure.

  55. ZimPaul

    Its not not enough for supporters like Gerry, they are as weak as shit.

    They don’t know how to support the team and club when things aren’t going our way. Good news for us is, we are on the verge of domination. The likes of Nasri, Gibbs, Wilshire, Van Persie and Ramsey are about to take over.. so we won’t be hearing from these doomer mugs for a long long time!

  56. I read the BBC gossip page everyday to keep an eye on where the shit will escalate from. And this Cesc rumour is something else. Somebody seriously is peddaling this bollocks. I say sue Barca.

    I would have preferred the what transfer targets Wenger is going for posts over this shite. I don’t want to waste anymore energy on it.

    So who out of the reserves would everybody most like to see make the step up? Did anyone see the Ayling left yesterday.

  57. That’s quite reassuring, KG.

    What I took from it is that Barcelona need a player who can chip in goals from midfield like Cesc; they’re currently banking on Messi to put in superhuman performances.

    Someone connected to Barcelona pointed the midfield stat out today as a response to Laporta’s comments. The headline says, “Cesc will cost a lot because he’s worth a lot”.

  58. ALot?

    Like how much?

  59. LOL *Earl* aka ELS….

    You sound tired my friend…

    I have a Gooner mate who has refused to pick up his phone this week and they say he’s called in sick at work.

    I guess with the internet and social media comes the reality that more and more people will talk about everything and anything, and inevitably bull shit will surface at some point.

    Fear not, we’re the Arsenal.

  60. A completely media manufactured story that we are all guilty of perpetuating.

    Basically there is nothing much happening, re, Arsenal at the moment and despite this non story excitement, i’m enjoying the relative lack of stress. However as Ole put it into perspective so well, I will leave it at that.

    Enjoy the sunshine and enjoy the fact you are not a supporter of any other club than an Arsenal.

  61. There’s an interview with PHW on goal.com. Take it with a pinch of salt since they publish more lies than Blair’s spin department.

    But in it he says; in order of importance….

    1. Wenger will stay. He’s the best manager in the world & they’re negotiating.

    2. The club are not considering selling Cesc but if we did it will not halt the march of the mighty Arsenal as we coped with losing better players; Bergkamp, Henry, Vieira, Adams.

    3. We will be active in the transfer market.

    4. Chamakh will come soon.

  62. The odds on Cesc staying at Arsenal have been shortening and shortening ever since the story first broke.

    This is pretty funny btw… And may I say what a beautiful day it is today…

  63. I see gooner2 has lost interest in Capital letters today.

    Fuck off gooner2, you really are one idiotic moron.

  64. @LA

    hahaha nice video

  65. I think JET and Bartley will see some football next year. If Lansbury has a good pre-season then he’ll be in the squad.

    Chuks Aneke could do a Wilshere this summer. The main difference between him and Jack is that Aneke’s already totally ready physically. He’s a thrilling prospect. It’s unfortunate for him that he’s injured for the u17 Euros, but that might be a blessing because it’ll keep a lid on the hype for now. I’m really intrigued to see what the next year holds for Aneke.

  66. Yeah funny vid LA “what else can i say, he was totally shit from the start” HAHAHA.

  67. Darius i’m going to be a monk. I read there allowed no technology apart from ESPN and SKY EPL games, without sound. Sounds alright.

    Good post today, who’s running your ship? Haven’t popped over to Stone Cold Towers yet.

  68. I would love to see JET especially come through this summer, it’s a shame we have so many good prospects’ but hard to accept very few of them will actually make it into first team regulars. Whats exciting is that the ones who do make it are mustard.

  69. If winning the FA cup is alright for Lampard Terry and Drogba and the Carling cup is good enough for Rooney and Rio why cant Wenger take these cups seriously?He used too pre 2006.
    We are a big club who should be winning trophies not being happy with 3rd place finishes.In 10 years time when Cesc has retired he can look back on all those 3rd and 4th place finishes when players not fit enough to lace his boots have a bagful of medals.Sky are even saying one of Cesc’s honours is winning the Charity shield.What a joke

  70. Yeah, MB, I should have added that it’s unclear whether any of them will become regulars. There are some great prospects in there though.

  71. OOU too true. Afobe also looks to be in that style. He scored for U17’s.
    I would like to see Nordtveit get some games in also.

  72. *England U17’s sorry

  73. why do some of you say we better not sell for less than 45 mill,thats a disgrace the absolute minimum we should be geting IF Cesc were to leave should be 60m,if kaka was worth 70 then we should rape those barca cunts for as much as possible.il be raging if the board accepted anything other than that amount!!

  74. ELS – I heard that Monks listen to talk sport though, and they have their own version of Adrian Durham and Alan Brazil…there’s no hiding place…LOL!

    SCA Towers is closed for a long weekend as folks take a deserved rest, but don’t worry, back to business before you even know.

  75. For Brady see Cesc

    Ole
    2.”we coped with losing better players in Bergkamp Henry Vieira and Adams”

    Did we really?Since we lost Bergkamp Vieira and Henry we have won shit all.We havent even finished in the top 2. PHW really is a clown.How the hell is he the chairman of our great club?

    The club has gone backwards since David Dein left

  76. I wonder how Cesc feels about Barça not rating him more than £30m.

    For all their talk it seems to me that either

    Barça doesn’t really want Cesc from a footballing standpoint but as an emotional transfer, prodigal son and all that.

    or

    After paying £36m for Villa they realised that there’s no more money to spend.

    I doubt the banks in Spain will look kindly at Barça owing them a further £100m especially with the economic downturn in Spain showing no signs of recovery.

    Other teams in Spain are calling for more even distribution of TV money, which means no more duopoly on TV money that Barça and Real currently enjoys.

    Even if the TV deals remains as is, it is entirely possible that they will suffer a drop in viewers simply because there’s no competition.

    Then again they (Barça) can easily get a shirt sponsor to dwarf anything we’ve seen before, but that would mean no more of that “more than a club/Unicef” shit.

    Anyway I digress, my point is Barça has put Cesc between a rock and a hard place. If he’s told Wenger that he wants to leave then he has fulfilled his role in Barça’s scheme.

    It’s up to them now to show how much they value Cesc, so far they’ve not done that.

    Infact they’ve done the opposite, by saying he’s worth less to them that Villa, and now they are compounding it by asking Cesc to go even further by handing in a transfer request.

    Methinks it is a step too far, for Barça and Cesc.

  77. That’s right, els. Afobe’s another massive prospect. They’re breaking through thick and fast…which is probably why we’ll be seeing a few more players like Ayling on their way this summer.

  78. 1 loose cannon

    Xavi on Fabregas:
    “It is criminal for a player of Cesc’s quality not to be winning the biggest prizes in football,”

    “He really has no choice but to leave. He is making the right decision and I hope Arsenal fans wish him well.”

    I really don’t know why some people like to interfere with others lives. the more I look into this situation the more I admire Fabregas for resisting this long, its seems to me he is surrounded with people, who are bugging him to move. It is very hard when people are nagging you and telling what you should be doing all the time. I can’t imagine someone like Lampard publicly urging Gerard to move to Chelsea because Liverpool are not winning. Why these people can’t just keep their mouth shut and let the guy get on with his life.

    I would like us to do the talking on the pitch by winning something and I think this is the only way to finally stop the idiots from talking and it will be even sweater if we knock Barcelona in C.League and win it next season.

  79. Zimpaul for the fanatical gooner he’d like to one day day say I was in such and such a place when Arsenal won the champions league, the first English treble or the first football quadruple. The unfortunate truth is your great grand children may not be so impressed if you told them – maybe in 2050 A.D. that we qualified for the champions league for thirty years in a row without winning it. He’d probably ask what was missing. It’s like Stirling Moss, never won the formula one championship but came second four times. He may be called by some the greatest English driver ever but fellows like me who were not of his generation feel that he just lacked that extra something to make him a true legend. Arsenal need that little something. We had it in 2006 but ended up as nearly men!

  80. OOU – I must say I haven’t seen much of Aneke and mainly rely on reading about prospects such as him from people like yourself and other sources. I hope he is as good as you report and we see him in the Carling Cup next season.

    Talking about prospects, I had and still have high hopes for Jay Simpson but there is a fine line between him being ready now and him being ready in a few years, by which time he could have moved on.

  81. Me too, loving Aneke’s style, OOU.

    I’d say Szczesny has at least got himself to Austria again with his acrobatics at Brentford. Whether he goes out on loan or whether he leapfrogs one or two of Mannone and Fabs is obviously a matter clouded in unknowns – in that will someone be brought in ahead of him.

    I think Lansbury is there. He’ll play a part next season.

    I’d like to say that Daniel Boateng, Connor Henderson, and Franny Coquelin are ready to make the step up – but it’s much harder to tell with defensive players.

    I think Barazite is clearly ready, and I’m intrigued by the prospect of little Wellington Silva coming over in January. The one I’m really looking forward to though is Benik Afobe. I agree with Els. He’s got it all. Great touch, great vision, clinical finisher, and physically he looks strong enough to cut it already – at 16! He looks well out of place at under-17 level in any case. Speaking of which… whens the next England game?

  82. We have got plenty of that little something, we are shitting out quality players left right center, and all over the place. If doubt Cesc cannot see this, he is with Wenger more than anyone else, he just has to play diplomatic to the Spanish press so he doesn’t hurt his International prospects.

  83. Xavi plays dirty. On the pitch and off it, it seems. Those comments don’t surprise me at all. Devious little shit. I used to like watching him play a pass, but when you look at how he plays, for every nice pass, there’s a dive. Can’t like a player like that. You can tell by his eyes that he’s evil. Evil little prick.

  84. Great to read by the Stone Cold man. Note that at this stage Barca is still at the stage of unsettling the player.
    1st – Rumor and innuendo using the media. The English press has been as complicit as the Spanish press.
    2nd – Demands by colleagues, particularly Barca colleagues on the Spanish team that he leave Arsenal to join Barca. Yesterday was Gerard Pique, today is Xavi. According to goal.com, “It is criminal for a player of Cesc’s quality not to be winning the biggest prizes in football,” Xavi told reporters.
    3rd stage – Still to unfold but lets look out for Mr 10% to start agitating.

    Lets see if the Barca scum are really serious. As Peter Hill Wood has said they have made no contacts, so far. They are up to their eyeballs in 420 million in debt in the middle of an European financial crisis. We know they are skint but from my position I have no idea of how desperate and how much foolish money they can lay their hands on.

    Still some way to go but I remain confident Arsenal holds most of the cards. Bastards.

  85. Lansbury is my favourite reserve player. With Ramsey injured and Merida probably leaving he’ll probably get his chance in the first half of the season as a bit player. If he proves his worth – of which I’m sure he will – he probably be given a target of maybe twenty or so games in a year. Ramsey had been given a target of 18 games by Wenger but had played 29 before that bastard broke his leg. Lansbury is the next big thing for us.

  86. gooner2. You said it at 10.03.

  87. LimparAssist & shotta

    Have to say its quite low of them to come out and play a part in the actual tapping up of our player. Especially Xavi, a player whos position could well be under threat if Cesc did go to Barca. Xavi can only dream of being the player Cesc is, Xavi cant score and can only dive to win over a midfield battle.

    Barca cheat on and off the field, what role do the football associations play (FIFA and UEFA) while all this goes on…? Our game against Barca was another perfect example of this cheating ‘on the field’.. we were penalised for every attempted tackle

  88. Gerry. I do not need for you to explain to me the meaning of free speach. You are so quick to jump on the negative bandwagon that you complety missed my point. I would try explaining it to you but I can’t be bothered wasting my time on you.

  89. One thing that stands out for me regarding our youth and reserve players: What a fantastically diverse bunch of unusually named people we have assembled.

    I look forward to going to a game in the future and seeing someone with Ozyakup on their back.

  90. Shotta.

    Fabregas’s Mr. 10% is none other than David Dein’s son, who is also Titi Henry’s Mr. 10% and hustler extraordineir of Henry’s move to Barca….LOL! Do the math.

    I agree with Wengerball in that Barca may have put Cesc in between a rock and a hard place and hung him out to dry. They wouldn’t necessarily have money to buy him, and Fabregas will have committed professional suicide by submitting a transfer request as a result of being bullied into it by his Spanish compatriots.

    I wouldn’t put it past Arsenal to farm him up the M1 if a transfer request signals to the market that Cesc is available – Barcelona £30 to £40m, Manchester City £70 to £80m. Go figure.

  91. OOU sad but true. I think as mentioned above simpson will be a casualty as might lansbury unfortunately.

    Still at least it earns us money and gives the lads a really good start on there career.

  92. Don’t get me started, CG. In the first quarter of an hour of the second leg we pushed and harried as well as we had at any point this season, we won the ball fairly, only for little devil spawn like Xavi to go down like shot shit and the ref bought it every time. That period was absolutely critical, and the ref effectively robbed us of the initiative we’d earnt through Nik’s goal by saying Arsenal, you can’t make any contact whatsoever in the tackle now.

  93. Excellent stuff from the Daily BNP:

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-1280189/Cesc-Fabregas-staying-Arsenal-hit-Barcelona.html?ITO=1490

    No, not the guff from Peter Whimsey but the fact that they’ve got it worked out when Cesc will be presented to the Barcelona faithful:

    4th June when the Spanish squad return from Austria.
    9th June the Spanish squad day off.

    At least they’ve taken time to find out when its convenient…

    YW

  94. Must love Wenger. Here we are losing our heads over Cesc and there he is speaking about Bayern Munchen.
    Peter Hill-Wood says Cesc isn’t for sale. Can we trust him?

  95. I assume, in your speculative scenario, Darius, that Cesc would ‘fail to agree terms’ with Man.C

  96. Bradys right foot

    I think Barca and La Porta have over played their hand. Given the reality of their financial situation they really are in no position to purchase Fabregas at this time. The 30 million “bid” which is of coarse is non existant at the moment is so far off the market value for an elite player like Fabregas that Arsenal will dismiss it out of hand even if they are minded to let Fabrega go.

    The fee if Fabregas were to leave is incredibly important. Our key players are for the most part are under long contracts or have signed extensions. ln light of this real weight and value has to be placed by the club on every year they have left to run on these contracts. A fee should be seen as compensation, to loose the services of Fabregas with four years left on his deal the club are perfectly entitled to feel that they should be compensated for this loss to the tune of £20 million per year. It would also signal to agents, players and other clubs that a contract at Arsenal when signed means that the club decides if the player comes or goes not the player or el presidente.

    La Portas behaviour in the media has beeen disgraceful, but Fabregas comments created the initial frenzy. What these comments actually mean is open to debate but lets indulge the likes of Hunter and Ballage for a second. The captain is far too intelligent not to have known the ramifications of his comments that I accept. However If motivated by a genuine desire to leave the Fabregas camp must be scratching their heads coming from a position of weakness in terms of the contract means that he had to go public obviously not the most comfortable thing for Cesc to do. However after going public and then being backed by a supposed 30 million offer IF true, Fabregas and his people must be shaking their heads. I’m sure his agents own valuation of the player would be at least double that and considering what he means to Arsenal maybe even a bit extra. If £30 million represents the true extent of Barcas financial desire to get Fabregas then they may as wel bid for Milner instead.

    All idle speculation and nonsense I admit but my cousin more paranoid delusional than Arsenal fan despite his season ticket suggested its all one big cunning plan, to wrestle as much money from the board as possible for Wengers transfer kitty to be truthful he knows as much as the assorted hacks plying their trade churning out verbage by the ton. I feel utterly ashamed of myself for indulging in the silly season and promise not to darken the hallowed pages of ACLF until the emirates cup COME WHAT MAY have a good summer boys and girls.

  97. Sometimes it’s difficult to keep things low-key, MG. I’ve seen Aneke in a handful of games, and can only watch highlights of all the u18 matches. It certainly doesn’t make me an authority.

    Still, week after week you see the guy playing perfect through-balls for Freeman and Afobe. He’s got that playmaking gift; sometimes you don’t know who the pass is intended for until the recipient has possession. For me, that skill is bloody rare, and it’s amazing to see from someone so young.

    Totally forgot Barazite and Coquelin as well, LA.

    The hope is that these guys will exert pressure on the seniors, even if they don’t actually make it into the side themselves. It will be great for first team to have quality youngsters itching for some top-level football, and just waiting for a chance to impress.

  98. Good article, my feelings exactly. Its the not knowing either way that i find unsettling. I guess the truth is we just have to wait and then act accordingly. I for one dont want him to leave but if he did then he could go with my thanks for the excitement he has brought to, not just Arsenal but the premiership. If the press and sky sports got behind english teams the same way the press in spain appear to then i believe it would minimise the effect this time of year has on Arsenal fans, which is to divide opinion, which appears to bring hatred for other people who share a single love. It then becomes a competition to see who the most loyal Arsenal fans are. The English prem (imo) has dropped a level, maybe the press and particulally sky wont be happy until they have encouraged all the foreign talent to leave. Once again, good article.

  99. I dunno, Els. Bartley, Lansbury and JET have all featured on Arsenal.com this week. Not sure if that means anything, but I I think they’ll all get a chance to show what they can do this summer.

  100. Darius it’s simply not good enough. I see what your doing. I see alright. Drying up the content until we are crying out for it 🙂

    So were all decided we have an excellent youth policy.
    Is it Jan we get to see wellington. Didn’t he score something like 163,503 goals in nine games or sumit?

  101. LOL Consolsbob, don’t know which would be worse – Farming him up north or benching him for spitting his dummy.

    Either way, I don’t see him playing for City with any level of enthusiasm.

  102. I don’t believe for once that Fabregas told Wenger he wants to leave. Take that bit of fact out of all the speculation and you find all that is left is just hot air, that we’ve been hearing season after season.

  103. **********************************
    http://fantasyfootball.metro.co.uk/worldcup
    ACLF (8003629)
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  104. Whats up with coquelin by the way? I was really looking forward to seeing him make that DM position his own. Somehow it seems Eastmond has beaten him to it. I’ve only seen him play as right back this season. Does anyone know what position he plays for the reserves?

  105. Eastmond did impress me, I want to see a bit more of Lansbury next season too. I think he can make a serious name for himself next season. With Ramsey injured and probably going to take time to come back, there will be space on the bench for another midfielder. Was Lansbury injured throughout much of last season or on loan??

  106. On the issue of the charges who are likely to make first team, my sense is that JET, Eastmond and Wilshere will be the ones who make the most mileage with there opportunity. Gibbs I feel has already stamped his authority and will continue to breathe down Clichy’s neck.

    I agree with those who suggest that Jay Simpson might struggle to make the grade.

  107. I hope so, OOU it’s just there’s so many. I would have kept Lansbury in the mix last season. That suggested to me a little aprehension. JET, Lansbruy and Anouk (I imagine, although I don’t claim to be entirely clued up) all looking for one position crazy aint it.

    As for defenders it’s even more difficult, as for me you can add another 5 years onto a career before they are at an age they can play consistently. So Bartley, Nord, Eastmond (if he doesn’t convert to DM) will have to keep on thriving to stave off future Vermealen type signings.

    Hope your right OOU

  108. CG he was at Watford scored a few n all.

  109. Simpson for me is a real good option, but he seems like an old school goal hanger type, which wouldn’t float Wengers boat. He needs to add more overall game.

    Still he could bring in a few mil. The puppy farm keeps the petty cash rolling in.

  110. Have to say, word, I think the Maccy D’s one looks a better option.

    http://en.mcdonalds.fantasy.fifa.com/M/rules.mc

    Bit more detailed.

  111. Thanks els

    Apart from Chamakh, we should only really expect defensive type players to come in.

    We can fill 2 benches with quality youngsters alone who are very eager to make their names. The likes of Denilson, Walcott, Rosicky, Eduardo need to really prove their worth next year and cement their spot in the team because as every season ticks by these youngsters are taking several strides forward, next season they will be breathing heavily down their necks. I don’t know if Wenger can keep holding some of them back.

  112. Yogi – just wondered what your take on Untold Arsenals view that there is a core of bloggers visting sites under multiple identities?

    Possible? Likely?

  113. “…sometimes you don’t know who the pass is intended for until the recipient has possession.” I like that description, OOU. Rosicky and Arshavin both spring to mind.

  114. Van Persie
    Cesc
    Vermaelen
    Song

    No matter who we sign, it just seems to me that as long as we keep these 4 players going for the majority of the season, there is no stopping us.

    Walcott, Arshavin, Rosicky, Nasri and the rest perform a lot better when we have (I hate to say it!) our spine all available.

    Take United, remove Vidic, Rooney, Fletcher, and Scholes and they will have big problems.

    The same can be said of Chelsea, take out Drogba, Essien, Lampard, and Terry and you have destroyed their team. Chelsea have options to cover, but they won’t be able to cover the loss of goals from Drogba and Lampard.. and the cheating Terry.

    Our lads done well without many of our key players, lets hope next season we won’t have to look on and wonder hoe much longer our team can hold out before our key players return. Every team has key players, so before you doomers use this as a stick to beat me with, you can’t have a team who does not rely on certain players

  115. regarding my last comment… maybe there is one team = Barcelona.. Messi seems to have destroyed everyone this year!

    You would think a team who has the best player ever (in my opinion) to not need to stoop so low as they have done so over the Cesc affair. It’s a shame because any admiration I had left for Barca went out the window. They are like the milkman of the football world, who keeps coming round your neighbourhood looking to pick out a lonesome housewife who is happily married with papers to prove it!

  116. shotta-gunna

    BRF -Excellent analysis. My only quibble is your assertion that it is only speculation. There is a lot of smoke coming out of Spain and Barcelona in particular. Knowing how classless that organization is (them and their cousin Real Mad) we know that they are capable of arson.
    There is a destabilization campaign afoot and Cesc is a witting or unwitting pawn. I love my own metaphor that he is lusting for his 1st love while married to a beautiful rich woman. This will be settled sooner or later.

  117. I thought you were one of those QoS? 😉

  118. Are you setting up a fantasy league then LA?

  119. LimparAssist

    From a Chelsea fan… “I did not watch our celebrations… I don’t particularly like our players or fans. Drog’s hissy fit with the post in the cup final almost made me turn over.”

    Be careful what you wish for, we are one of the very luckiest set of football fans on the planet. Don’t take it for granted.

  120. QOS; Geoff and Pedro would most likely know all about that.

  121. LimparAssist

    I’m not doing a team until the 23 man squads are announced myself, Matt. ‘Word’ has set up an ACLF league on the Metro game.

    I’m still not entirely sure if I want to spend the World Cup wondering whether or not my Paraguayan winger got a touch for an assist yet.

  122. For Brady see Cesc

    CG

    As an ex Milky i like your comparison but if the husband is not satisfying his missus the milkman comes along and does the business.The truth is we are not satisfying Cesc while Barca can

  123. CG those four players are the exact ones I listed as our invaluable backbone. Great minds, although you were a little more eloquent ha.

    When you look at the amount of youth we have come through from the reserves i.e. Theo, Deni, NB… they really only have two seasons max before the next lot Jack, Eastmond and Sunu (three similar players with same positional roles) are nipping at there heals. Whoever said theres not enough pressure needs to take another look.

  124. maccy d’s fantasy wc has simple rules like the barclays one but no idea how good it is becasue you cant pick a team until 4 june. Don’t think its worth waiting for as the rest of the website is pants

  125. ************************************
    http://fantasyfootball.metro.co.uk/worldcup
    ACLF (8003629)
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  126. I’m not going to push it much harder. its there if you want. its in your hands, the sunshine beckons for me…

  127. The Telegraph one is usually pretty good, but not sure if they are doing a WC one, as i don’t read it.

    QoS,

    Not much point publishing people’s IP adresses (besides, i am not sure how legal it is to anyway), as we all know who the main D&G merchants are.

  128. Yeah, LA. This game comes to mind.

  129. els

    The way I see it, the current crop which grace the Emirates week in week out, many were not trained through their teens the Arsenal way. Those who claim project youth has failed and Cesc will leave etc… the real blossom of our hard work is yet to pay off. The only reason we have managed to remain competitive during the early stages of project youth is down to Wenger managing to pluck out an Eduardo, Sagna or Vermaelen.. once every now and then. The likes of Denilson and Walcott are still young players and can go on to become something special.. but they will have a much tougher time next season, and the season after will get tougher… and so on as the players coming through will have the advantage of being better prepared for 1st team action.

    All the names that pop up on this blog, some I haven’t heard of, some will dissapear and play in the conference, others in league 1 or 2.. others in the Championship. What you can guarantee though is there will be a constant flow of talent coming through, which with our club’s policies, we aint scared to un-earth them like many other clubs. It’s very exciting, and I am looking forward to seeing who Wenger introduces into the squad come August, theres always 1 or 2.

  130. I just hope Arsenal don’t cave in.

    Cesc should be granted his wish. If his wish is to leave Arsenal, then so be it.

    But Barcelona must be made to climb Olympus to get him.

    If Cesc issues a formal transfer request, then we should make an auction of it, and sell to the highest bidder.

  131. Ole

    I will be shocked if it came down to Cesc handing in a transfer request. Cesc wouldn’t put himself in that position even if he wanted to leave. It’s not like he can’t bear it here!!

  132. Was there an auction for cronaldo? If there wasn’t, how did ManU get 80 for him?

  133. Nice thought Ole, but I don’t think arsenal would see against the wishes of the player. That’s never been their mo.

    I think this is all dependant on other dealings done by Barca freeing up money. They know they will have to stump up the asking price, or no deal. I suspect they will try to hawk out Ibrahimovich to the northern chavs to fund it. At the very least.

  134. Sorry – would go against the wishes of the player.

  135. QoS

    It happens – the prime example was James who could quite happily have several conversations with himself all at the same time.

    When I spot them, the ISP is spammed. You can tell who they are because their style of writing does not change even though they alter their posting name.

    I doubt it is a concerted effort on their part but I suspect that they troll around the sites to see if they can bite, wind up the regulars and then bugger off to the next one.

    To be honest, they are a pain in the arse but nothing more.

    YW

  136. LimparAssist

    gooner2, for example, was James… surely.

  137. Gret point CG taking that pleasure is something only Arsenal fans get. So why isn’t everybody on here revelling in it.

    As you say we have only one or two waves of wenger-thoroughbreads come through so far, they will get better and better.

    If there is another cesc or rvp on the planet you can guarantee he will be or is allready in the youth set-up.

    Whatever players don’t make it hopefully we can ruthlessly turn a profit.

    There’s obviously a case of rose tinted glasses as Ayling has just moved to Yeovil. I don’t know about you but he sure as shit looked EPL quality.

  138. LimparAssist

    Wow. What a performance that was. I remember watching that and feeling very sorry for the Rs who were well and truly humiliated that night. They offered nothing.

    Where has that burst of pace gone though? He needs to lose some weight, train hard and prove himself. He hasn’t come close to consistency yet. Moments of magic, but not consistently effective yet. Big season for wee man.

  139. He may be called by some the greatest English driver ever but fellows like me who were not of his generation feel that he just lacked that extra something to make him a true legend.

    KenyanGunner, it makes me sad to see statements like that. They come directly from ignorance. Fanboys like you who can only see value in shiny bits of metal attached to ribbons of various colors are truly missing what makes this the beautiful game. Get some perspective. I would suggest you read up on Arsenal history, it will help you understand a bit more why this is the greatest club on the planet.

    Darius, top post but I have to agree with Frank, the HIV analogy was a bit ugly. A better analogy is the waiting time the unfortunates go through in the movie Aliens. Now that’s scary!

  140. on the subject of the spammer, why? How could anybody not have more in there life than that?

  141. Cesc loves Arsenal, in my opinion he would never do us any wrong. He is also Spanish and from Barcelona so we should not get in his way IF he wants to go home. Regardless of what he has done for us on the pitch, it takes a lot for a boy to grow up away from his homeland and Cesc deserves credit for that. The rest is up to him, and Sky Sports, and various other media scumbags.

  142. Els – I asked James what motivates a Spurs fan to frequent Arsenal blogs and he said something like: “boredom and curiosity”.

    I think the guy is just a bit lonely and confused.

  143. OOU, CG and Els:

    Have you not learned anything watching Walcott, Nasri, Denilson, Diaby, Song, RVP, C Ronaldo etc etc.

    RVP and C Ronaldo are both great after being fringe 1st team players for a few years. The others have a chance to be really good but none of them has performed consistantly at the top level except maybe Song. Aneke, Afobe, Wilshire, Ramsey, Landsbury, JET and Ramsey all have a chance to be really good but realistically none is ready to play with any regularity in the first team if we want to have any chance of winning the league next year.

    Give these kids a break. Do you want them to go through the same thing Walcott and Diaby have. Great 1 game and invisible the next 2. It takes time for all players to get past that stage. It not only hurts the team but it may hurt their careers. AW has been forced to rush players throught the system for financial reasons, but hopefully not that need has diminished. If your true love is watching Carling Cup teams make it to the Semifinals then knock yourselves out but I hope we have higher goals for the next few years.

  144. Bill

    I think you may have misunderstood.

    I enjoy watching the youngsters come in ‘when they are ready’, and yes I aknowledge that Diaby, Denilson, Walcott have had to cope with a lot of pressure and relied on a tad too much. This is not just down to financial reasons, but down to the injuries also.

    These players will be stronger with all these games under their belt, which is the plus side to our last few years of hard work without anything really to show in terms of a piece of metal (trophy).

    Like I said, I am looking forward to seeing the ‘ready player/s’ he introduces into the team. None of us were complaining when he brought in Cesc, Clichy, Cole, Van Persie…. and so on.. Many of us are very greatful he did.

  145. Muppet,

    Oh sure, I would expect the club to respect Cesc’s wishes.

    But respecting Cesc’s wishes would be why they would discuss a transfer for him at all since we weren’t looking to sell and the squad is built around him.

    Respecting his wishes does not mean giving him away at any price.

    That’s Barcelona’s fundamental miscalculation; that Arsenal would respecting Cesc’s wishes let him walk without paying the going market rate.

  146. Miscalculation or not Ole gunner, Barcelona will continue to carry on behaving in this manner untill Arsenal have enough and Cesc actually wants to leave, I hope this day doesn’t come and hasn’t come. Even then like you and everyone else has pointed out, it will take a huge sum for us to part ways with Cesc, even he knows this.

    They know Cesc would like to go and play for them one day. They know that it will give them an even bigger dent in their bank balance too. So the more they isolate him, make us believe that he will go to Barca no matter what, they think we will eventually give in. At the same time they are killing off the competition as it is widely made known to every person from every corner of the globe that Cesc will only play for Barca… Its a bit unfair, but this is what the media and Barca have lead everyone to believe… whether it will happen time will tell. But they are not losing anything by behaving this way in their eyes, plus it helps that cu*nts election campaign

  147. CG:

    I think our generation of under 20’s is truly awesome and I really enjoy the Carling Cup also. However, I see people post statements saying that if we lost Cesc at least we have Ramsey and Wilshire. Ramsey and Wilshire both have a chance to be true world class players but they can not realistically compete with Essien, Lampard, Drogba on a regular basis now. 3 years from now maybe. 6 years from now when Afobe hits 23 we may have a world class striker

    Call me impatient and say I have “trophy envy” but its time for us to really make a push to win. J. Wilshire and J. Djourou might have to work a bit harder and wait a bit longer to make their real impact if we strengthen the squad but they will make it if they are good enough. Yogi’s post 2 Tuesdays ago said it better then I could. The really good youth (Wilshire, Ramsey) will take their places in our first team. Buying a couple of CB this year will kill the Arsenal career of a Luke Ayling but not J. Djourou. If he is good he will get his chances and move up the pecking order when he proves how good he really is.

  148. Afternoon all.

    I’d been away while this newsflash: ‘Cesc to Barca’ reared it’s ugly head again. And i was welcomed back with many a ‘so he’s finally off then’ bollocks. I refused to believe anything until i had read all the articles myself.

    Now that i have, it’s pretty obvious that it’s the same old bullshit copied & pasted into this summer’s papers.

    Until Cesc comes out and says that he wants to leave this summer, or Wenger says we are interested in selling him, then it’s all meaningless.

    Xavi is turning into one of my most hated players. What a cunt.

    I used to love Barca, but they’ve shown over the last few years that they’re complete scumbags.

    I just want to see the back of this window and crack on with our title triumph for 2010/11.

    ARSENAL!!

  149. Ole

    I’m not sure that Fabregas’ wishes come into Barcelona’s calculations. They want him to say that he wants to leave because they feel it will give them the upper hand and drive the price down.

    Were he to follow that course, my preferred action by Arsenal would be to sit the lad down at a press conference where he can explain his request. At the end, tell the world that the price is £80m and that unless Barcelona meet that by the end of the week, the player would not be going anywhere.

    YW

  150. Imaging how pissed off Cesc is getting with all this too! He will undoubtably be flattered (as would anyone who’s wanted by Barca) but surely he’s getting more and more tired of having to say the same old shit every time there’s nothing better to report.

    I hope he sees them for the bastards they are.

  151. Ole:

    Agree completely. We should do everything within reason to give Cesc his wish. However, we still have to get reasonable value from him if we do sell. I do not know the going market rate but it can not be less then 50 – 60M.

  152. Bill, we only discussed the listed players in a way to illustrate the potential and future we have at the club. Not to heap pressure. In-fact we talked at great length on how many sadly wouldn’t make it.

  153. What’s happened to this club….I’ve been a faithful supporter for years and have until recently supported manager Yogi’s youth experiment, but the time has come for change if I am going renew my season ticket. That Darius has a bit of Championship experience, but ZimPaul and Consolsbob, although very skilled, just arent ready for the move up from the Carling squad.

    I demand some big name transfers. I believe Geoff and Pedro two hard hitting DMs are on the market for only £50m and Arseblogger is looking unsettled in the OleOle team. Get in some big name signings now, it’s the only way ACLF is going win a trophy next season!

  154. Bill

    I understand, and I agree Wenger should still go out and find the needed players. Only the youths that are ready will come through to the squad, thats how it has been and thats how it will stay.

    Wenger has been very patient with all our young talents, Cesc you can say was an exception. Walcott was made to wait behind Eboue, and is still on the bench half the time. Clichy sat on the bench waiting for his chance behind Cole.. and so on.

    We just need 1 or 2 signings + Chamakh and we have an excellent squad. It’s all about sorting the defence out once again it seems!

  155. See Skybet are giving odds of 1/8 for Cesc to go to Barcelona before start of next season. Odds to stay at Arsenal are 5/2 . . . think I’ll have some of that!!!!

  156. JD Gooner..

    Think Ladbrokes have got him down 12/1 for top scorer in Spain !!! Fuckin crazy

  157. YW,

    We’re very much on the same page.

    If Cesc issues a public desire to leave the club, then Arsenal’s hand becomes even more strengthened.

    If Cesc asks to leave, the club is obliged only to afford him his wish, but not to sell him to a particular club.

    Once it’s public knowledge that Cesc wants to leave, then Arsenal can make an auction of it and sell him to the highest bidder.

  158. I have him down to be America’s Next Top Model at 4/1.

  159. chrisGoona
    Spot on as usual (on the team but also on your odds assessment)

  160. Any takers?

  161. I don’t remember saying I expect any of them to be first team regulars next season. Every squad needs a hierarchy though. You can’t just pack it with experienced internationals – especially not with the new home-grown rules – so it’s not unrealistic it to expect some young players to come through and get a bit of game time over the next year or so.

    We’re also anticipating AW’s moves in the transfer market, Bill. If you’re expecting more than three signings this summer – especially with those new home grown rules taken into account, remember – I think you’re going to be a little disappointed.

    Even Chamakh arriving is going to make an impact – it’s likely we’re going to to see an experienced squad member like Eduardo or Rosicky make way.

  162. Ole,

    I agree.

    It’s quite amazing that none of the media fratenity have considered that we may play hardball. That is, we may not even sell even if a respectable enough price is lodged.

    Ferguson refused to sell Ronaldo until the time came. We can do the same.

  163. I wonder if there is any precedent for a lawsuit by Cesc or Arsenal FC for the behavior by the papers in recent weeks. They are literally harassing, speculating, and saying whatever they want, and are able to get away with it by including the word “presuambly” or “supposedly” or “from an unnamed source” anywhere within the article. really does make sick.

    why is journalism in America not this whacked?

  164. Bill I agree also that we need signings. Defensive ones, and only because we haven’t developed anybody completely there yet. I would and expect Johan to play that role to a world class level, but it can’t be expected in the next season. Attack-wise if we can keep all the squad together, I could see us going for another 5 years without the need of an extra attacking player.

  165. haha geo

  166. NJ

    Because you’re still drinking our tea…

    YW

  167. NJGooner – I think there’s some technicality which means that it’s not official ‘tapping up’ so nothing can be done about it.

    That’s why the barca players etc are taking turns in releasing these ‘stories’. I think if Pep G came out and started spouting lies about Cesc and his future it would be different. Their devious ploys make me sick.

  168. OG

    as nice as it is to imagine us standing up to barcelona and saying you want him? get in line behind man city and match their price.

    as arsenal fans, we have a grudge agaisnt Barca, pushed to an absolutely belligerent, but vindicated, level thanks to their recent pursuits of our talismanic figures. cesc would hurt even more as he is yet to reach his prime.

    but lets be honest, we’d only sell him to Barca. if we refuse to he’ll just ride out the contract and go on a free

  169. Sorry, can’t back that up with any evidence, but i’m sure someone explained it to me (on here in fact) last year…

  170. The cheek of Sid Lowe.

    He reported just yesterday that Barca were going to unveil Cesc as their player today.

    Now he’s on Twitter saying Barca’s confidence has receded after PHW said we’d do our damndest to keep Cesc.

    Without any shame or acknowledgement that his previous reporting was wrong.

  171. heh, doesn’t surprise me Ole!

  172. YW

    it always comes back to the tea doesnt it..

    Geo

    it really is sickening. almost like xavi, pique get called into the laporta’s office and are told to say these things. interesting that messi hasnt come out with a similar cesc will come story

  173. For Brady see Cesc

    YW

    Rememember when TH14 turned down Barcelona and pledged himself to us and signed a 4 year contract with us.What were we left with? An unhappy player who sulking all season.And he left the following season for half the price we would have originally got for him.Do you think Cesc will be any different?.Its no good keeping an unhappy player

  174. Don’t quote me on that, but it’s along those lines anyway…

    I seem to remember Messi saying something like that last year too! I doubt there are many players in that team who havent done their bit.

    I just hope Cesc gets to the end of his teather with all this soon. It must be so annoying for him… He should just tell them to Fuck Off and stop telling him what to do with his life.

  175. It’s the way every sensible club works. I mean, we didn’t set the academy up for a laugh.

    Meanwhile our USP in the transfer market rover the last five years is that we’ll always give young players a chance. It’s one of the things that’s kept us competitive at a time when we haven’t been able to match Chelsea, Spuds, Manure and Shitty’s spending power.

    Meanwhile, here’s proof that if you have the talent and if you get the mix right, you can win the lot with a side built around young players.

  176. Thierry Henry was 30 when he left Arsenal. Cesc is 23 with the best years of his life still to come.

    We absolutely don’t want a sulking player, but that’d be no reason to hand him over to Barca for a bag of crisps.

  177. TH14 suffered from a sciatica injury in that last season which has plagued him ever since. Actually, he’s been under used, strangely since the CL QF, heh.

    Maybe he upset some people at Barca?

    The esteemed Dr. Sid thought that Barca’s greatest error was not to play TH14 against Inter. Obvious really.

  178. For Brady see Cesc

    Just put yourself in the position of PHW and Fitsman.Say we dont really want to sell Cesc but we dont want to keep an unhappy player then bank the £50m.Genius

  179. FBSC –

    Wenger knew that it was the right time to let Thierry go. We haven’t suffered financially for letting him go for £16m. We got (by far) the best years out of him and let him go as soon as he started to decline.

    Wenger is the all time master at knowing when to let someone go. Maybe his stubborness got in the way of Diarra and Flamini, but both of them had egos and greed that Wenger doesnt care for.

  180. Els and CG:

    Agreed.

    However, if Cesc really goes then everything changes.

    Just hope the fans and our young players have the patience needed to realize that we are a team with the highest aspirations and we can not keep regularly bringing 20 year old players into the side and expect to meet those aspirations. The ideal model is to have a sustainable pool of youth and home grown players and have the financial muscle to supplement with top quality experienced players. Hopefully that is what the last 5 years have been about. I do not know of any club in recent history that has consistantly competed at the top level using only home grown players. (Ole or Limpar, correct me if I am wrong. You know alot more about football history)Galacticos can work but we can not afford that and would not want to go that way even if we could

    Ole @ 3:29:

    “If Cesc asks to leave, the club is obliged only to afford him his wish, but not to sell him to a particular club.

    Once it’s public knowledge that Cesc wants to leave, then Arsenal can make an auction of it and sell him to the highest bidder.”

    Spot on. Cesc has to realize that if we can not sacrifice our teams future just because we want to do what he thinks is best for him. The Arsenal is bigger then Cesc. The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the 1.

  181. Of course we should get the best possible price for any player, but the fact that Cesc will only go to Barcelona has to be taken into consideration. That’s one of the reasons why the transfer won’t happen. They cannot afford our asking price.

  182. Considering TH14’s injury, the final price AFC got for him was more valuble then gold.

    Yes, he could have been sold a season earlier, but I don’t think there is a medical team on the planet that could predict a a sciatic injury.

  183. I don’t think Cesc would be like that anyway. If he wants to go, he will tell Wenger and Wenger will sell him. If he wants to stay, he will give everything to win a trophy with Arsenal. Playing on with a broken leg gives some indication of that…

    These stories are nothing new, do you not think he would have been sulking for the last 5 years if he was that type of person?

  184. Whoop Whoop!! 4.00pm.

    Time to get out in the sun. Have a good one all 🙂

    ARSENAL!

  185. FBSC

    Different people react in different ways. Lets face it, TH14 could be a moody sod at the best of times.

    Personally, I suspect that there is too much egotism at Barcelona to stop a bid going in at around £50m-£60m which would then be accepted.

    YW

  186. LimparAssist

    If it is Cesc’s ‘wish’ to play for Barcelona next season, which I don’t happen to believe for a second, then fulfilling that wish is the last thing anyone at Arsenal FC should be thinking about.

  187. LimparAssist

    You lucky little bugger, Geo.

  188. I disagree LimparAssist. I think the relationship Cesc has with Arsene is something which will come into play. Whether that is good for Arsenal remains to be seen. I cannot see us selling him to anyone else, as long as Barca can match our asking price. I don’t think there will be a bidding war because there is only one other club other than us he would play for.

  189. LimparAssist

    It’s Lansbury, Bill – not Landsbury. And it’s Wilshere, not Wilshire. He’s not a county.

    Those two are going to be a great help in another long hard season of fighting on all four fronts. It’s all about having a strong, competitive squad. It’s not about how old they are, it’s about how good they are.

    Kieran Gibbs, for example, is only 20! And he’s knocking very hard on the door for the big games, and will be critical for us next season deputising for Gael Clichy.

    Ramsey is another one who’s talent is absolutely remarkable. He’d already managed to force his way into being a vital cog in Arsenal’s first team squad – at the age of 19! Reminiscent of Fabregas at 17. There’s no age limit on talent. Pele won the World Cup at 17. Jairzinho wowed the crowds at Botofogo when he was 15.

    Bill, please don’t belittle the achievements of our young players, nor underestimate their importance to the squad just to pursue your own rotten agenda to turn us into Inter Milan.

  190. I am just enjoying Barcelona Borough being reeled in by AFC…I suspect that have only just relaised that they are on the hook. Having thrashed about a bit they have now eased up a bit to consider their next move. They may get away this time…they may not. But either way we will have Cesc until we are good and ready to sell him.

  191. LimparAssist

    Matty Boy, if he goes anywhere then it’s Barcelona. I’m just saying, we get the maximum amount possible for our player – if he is to go. We don’t just roll over to facilitate Cesc’s ‘dream move’. If they can’t afford him they can’t afford him. He’s only 23, they’ll come knocking again. In fact, they’ll come knocking again every summer.

    I think we should tell them to fuck off this summer, and I think we should tell them to fuck off next summer too. We’re trying to win the league.

  192. It looks to me like Laporta is following a scorched earth policy. End his tenure with a big dramatic gesture, damn the cost.

    I have a feeling that we’ll see him head to Barca for about £55m. Would not suprise me entirely if such an agreement was already settled but Arsenal have asked for silence whilst they negotiate replacements so as not to drive up the price when the seller learns there is a big chunk of change in the Emirates coffers.

  193. If we sell Cesc to Barcelonians this season it would be for a sum which will break them. But I don’t think we will do that…

  194. I think Arsene will already have a plan in place if the bid is high enough.

  195. Interesting your thoughts on multiple nom de plumes Yogi. I’m not sure its always that easy to spot without ip data…

    For example, there are several posters that use the term Wengker or indeed Le-Senile or Basil…is that the same guy, is it a few guys in cahoots or is it the easily led adopting a phrase that sums up their view? Really hard to say with any certainty.

    What i have been able to demonstrate with an experiment this morning was that it is possible to hoodwink the gatekeeper without trying that hard, even on a site that does control who and who doesn’t get on.

  196. If cesc did want to go. I think that the least he would do would be to demand that barca pay enough for him. Firstly to show an intention of how much they value him over there recently uncovered innafective shite midfield. And secondly to basically compensate the club he has loved and served greatly for his entire professional career.

    I don’t really care to speculate but this would be the worst outcome I imagine happening. Cesc is a great player and loyal to the team, as seems evident by the amount of insistance he must receive from skunks like xavi blah blah blah.

    I’m sick to the pit of my stomach already. Hope it can be put to bed by the world cup. I know we shouldn’t have to dispell this shite AGAIN but this is all becoming a fucking circus and if it detracted from Chamahk’s atrival then frankly it’s not on.

  197. QoS

    Whilst IP data is most helpful, I find keywords equally efficient in stopping some getting on.

    I may have misunderstood the original post on UA but I do not believe it is co-ordinated. There may be some who are acting in cahoots but to be honest, if that is the sum total of their lives then they need to update their dosage.

    YW

  198. Matty Boy,

    If Cesc asks to leave, and Arsenal agree to sell, there can be a bidding war if Arsenal want it.

    They simply have to drop the word around 5 clubs and they’d put in their bids. Or if Arsenal wanted to play as dirty as the Catalan scum, they just have to put fake stories in the papers that Chelsea or Man City or Real want to buy.

    If Cesc can’t agree personal terms with whoever wins the auction, then he remains at Arsenal.

  199. Ole G..Although Arsenal can do that, I hardly ever remember we play those dirty games with our players, especially the ones that gave us good chunk of their careers.

    Barca, Real, Manure, Chelski, City, etc. etc. can be scum and play those dirty games…I don’t see Arsenal or Arsene playing them.

    People in football always talk about class only as in Playing on the field but not outside of it. Arsenal have both.

  200. Bill,

    There have been teams consisting mostly of young players who have dominated.

    Ajax have long had this tradition. The last Ajax vintage that dominated Europe consisted almost entirely of homegrown youth, apart from Litmanen, Finito & Kanu.

    The reason people believe young players can’t win you trophies is because very few teams try it.

    Just look at the fact that most of the world’s best players are below the age of 25 and that tells you all you need to know.

  201. LimparAssist

    Thanks for your post today Darius, and for all your posts over the course of the season. I’ve enjoyed them all. Have a great summer.

    I’m off to see the Chemical Brothers. Have a good weekend everybody.

    Arsenal.

  202. G4E,

    Arsenal don’t usually play dirty, and we’re not a greedy club.

    However it’s about time Arsenal took a stand. Cesc signed a contract, and has had it improved over the years. If Barcelona want him, they should pay what he is worth to us.

    Their scummy tactics to avoid do that is a declaration of war, and all is fair in war.

    If Cesc, around whom the squad has been built can be prised away on a whim, then the club has no chance of keeping its best players or even the less than best ones. That means they can get fatter improved contracts, and then move for nothing.

    Also, Barcelona have to come to the realisation that Arsenal don’t owe them anything. It’s the other way round, if anything. Time for them to go f*ck themselves in a massive anal orgy at their shithole stadium.

    Hopefully none of these will happen, but the vibes from Arsenal seems to be that they’d take a tough stance.

  203. Bayern Munich’s stance on Ribery has been a good precedence.

    Had they caved in and let Ribery go for nothing last season, they might not be playing the Champions League final tomorrow with a great chance of winning the treble.

  204. Ole while I totally agree with that.

    NUT Many of the best players in the world are under 25 but not many of the best defenders in the world are under 25. Therefore undoubtedly you can play the greatest attacking football, but defending is another thing. Ajax managed it and we are on the cusp.

  205. You need to get out more QoS.

  206. Of ourse Arsenal has to go tough.Cesc is OUR player, we made him what he is. They either pay up or shut up and wait until they’ve enough money saved (as in loaned from banks etc.) in their piggy bank to be able to pay OUR price.

  207. Bill,

    By the way, Barcelona’s passing football, and the blueprint on which their academy is built, and the philosophy of youth was implanted there by Johan Cruyff, transferring Ajax’s philosophy.

    The English media perversely like to misinform people that Arsene’s desire to do the same here is ridiculous and an intention reinvent the wheel, it’s actually a well-proven approach that has worked.

    I do concede that your academy will never produce all you need, but there is no reason to not have a culture of developing/finding very good young players and giving them a chance.

  208. You do need a mix, Ajax had Danny Blind to guide that crop. (Think he coached TV5).

    I don’t have last months tax returns for AFC in front of me at the moment, but it is completely disingenious to suggest AFC are unaware of that need, as the signing of AA proves, as the desire to retain Gallas shows.

    I’m still sore about loosing Gilberto, but I understand that there was obviously no choice, otherwise he would have stayed!

  209. Chamakh has signed for us. It’s on the official website.

  210. Nothing, still nothing.

    Once again, another day toiling planting squash and courgettes. A few rows of French beans and Devon Fried Rabbit prepared and I sit down again to see how much Cesc went for and how many players we have signed and…nothing.

    You don’t get anything ready for winter if you do nothing.

    I just hope that Arsene’s at least getting the ground a final rake prior to unwrapping his new seeds.

    The growing season doesn’t last for ever.

  211. Bugger! I should have posted two minutes earlier!

  212. Finsbury,

    They had Blind & Rijkaard. But it was a very young squad. As have been most of their best squads over the decades.

  213. Yeah Chamakh has signed. Looks like he’s going to wear the number 29 shirt, just like he did in Bordeaux.

  214. Rijkaard too!

    I thought it was just poor old Danny dragging them all along.

    One or two ‘vets’ was good enough for that squad, the current AFC squad has more.

    AFC made a signing. Who’d have guessed it.
    Well, there is some news up on Arsenal.com, finally…

    WHOOP WHOOP!

  215. Great news that we’ve finally signed Chamakh. Maybe we can actually start talking about someone other than Cesc.

  216. I hope we can have a stance Ole G. But all the previous indicators say that Wenger always try to balance the responsibility towards the club with the responsibility towards the player he brought in.

    Having a stance my also lead to the murky waters of keeping a player against his will.

    It all really depends on Fabregas wanting to leave or not. If He doesn’t want to leave and Barca is trying to get him anyway then we can have a stance, but if he wants to leave, then it’s a whole other story.

    Fabregas has to think of how Barca now put him on the spot and it is almost border on humiliating as if to say you left us, now you have to say to whole world you want to come back. Think of how Arsenal treated you, and how Barca treated you.

  217. Chamakhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

    Yesssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss

    Finally, now i wont be the only one wearing an arsenal shirt in morocco!!!! So happy,,

  218. Good news on Chamakh.

  219. Good news on Chamakh.

  220. Good to see that he has signed – am I too cynical in suggesting that this has happened today in order to create a ‘positive’ vibe rather than letting the negativity fester?

  221. Definitely a good threat in the air and good ball control too.

  222. Exactly right YW and coincided with WoodHill comments too?

  223. Yay. Good that it’s finally official.

  224. My posts were a bit rushed earlier – and it shows. That Ajax team had Blind and Rijkaard, but those were the only players older than their mid-twenties, and 3 teenagers played in that final against some of the best footballers Italy has ever produced.

  225. G4E,

    For all we know, QoS is correct that we’ve agreed to sell him, and it’s all under wraps until we find replacements.

    Note that all my comments are based on what I’d like to see happen, not what I know will happen.

    Do note however, that Arsene has never sold a key young player in his prime when he wasn’t ready to sell and adequate compensation wasn’t on offer.

    Anelka is probably the last example of when one of when a key young player wanted to leave, and you need no reminding that his transfer fee paid for our training ground, and left room for Thierry Henry to be acquired.

  226. Yogi you cynic! We all knew the signing was coming, just not sure when, so I don’t think it’s as calculated as you suggest. Although, the comments about Arsenal being a ‘dream’ and him being a supporter since he was a child are a great antidote to the Barca DNA crap. Lets hope Marouane is a hit with us and that he has does not have any Spanish dreams!

    Xavi is a c*nt

  227. And a diving cheating one at that

  228. I agree with you Ole G. and I too wish more aggressive stance because I’m fed up with our best players always being the target of other clubs.

    I think the best for all is Fabregas staying one more year and still being sold for a good amount of money next year….especially if he did well in the world cup.

  229. I like this Passenal 🙂 I bet she would beat Xavi’ ass if she meets him in the street.

  230. G4E, I’d kick him so far up in the air he would never come down again!

  231. Queen of Suburbia

    Any particular reason for that Matt or did you just feel a need to come on and have a go at me?

  232. I am happy to be a gooner…..

    Marouane’s first words as an Arsenal player.

  233. Lol Passenal, I have no doubts.

    Did any one see Chamack’ game against Juventus?

  234. Ole @ 5:34:

    Agreed. Hopefully we will eventually get most of our players through the academy route. That is the ideal model. We all love to see our home grown players succeed. It is also financially prudent. When there is a need, we should fill it with the best player we can get even if it does slow down some of our younger players.

  235. here’s the link…looks like he gave them a horrible time.

  236. Queen of Suburbia

    Looking forward to seeing the chamakh attack in action.

  237. Very pleased….very pleased indeed.

  238. A round of the finest beer on Frank

    … since CBob disappeared and we can’t have a round of the finest Cider.

  239. I’m very pleased to see him give Chellini a whack after what he did to RVP.

    It’s also great to have a player who really wants to be here

    “This is a dream come true and a great joy to be joining Arsenal. My goal was always to play in the Premier League and Arsenal was the choice of my heart.

    “Without any hesitation, Arsenal was my preferred club. The team and history of Arsenal, they make me dream.

    “My goal was to join Arsenal out of the all the English clubs because it is a club that makes me dream and I have been a fan since I was a child.

    “I’m very excited about playing at Emirates Stadium in front of the Arsenal supporters. I have heard many great things about the stadium and I cannot wait to be playing there in an Arsenal shirt.”

  240. Oh yes…..bring on the beer…

  241. Frank

    I had you pegged as more of a Pimms man!

    YW

  242. Barca are like a family who had too many kids. One of them played guitar pretty well but they were oblivious to his potential, so to have one less mouth to feed they let him go to a foster family. The family loved him as one of their own, nurtured his gift and within years he was a massive rock star appreciated by millions. Naturally the family come crawling back, loudly proclaiming that the gifted kid is theirs and rightly belongs back with them as he “shares their DNA”.

    I’m not sure where i’m going with this, listening to XTC puts me in a weird mood.

  243. Actually I don’t drink beer or Pimms, YW. But I am happy to buy the frst round. Very pleased with this signing…very pleased indeed.

  244. Christ Vince, leave the Gang of Four albums alone then!

  245. Frank

    I have a feeling that there would be an argument at the bar with everyone trying to buy the first round. And Passenal at the back, sighing, “Will one of you please just buy me a drink!

    YW

  246. Were only making plans for Nigel!

  247. We only want whats best for him….

  248. Cos if hes happy, he must be happy in his world!

  249. These plans? Who the fuck is Nigel?

  250. Awesome news.

    I hope the boss can get RVP and Chamakh or NB52 on the pitch at the same time. Walcott, Sagna, Clichy Nasri etc etc need to go out and practice their crossing. A great header of the ball can add a lot to our attack and also make our set pieces much more dangerous.

    Great stuff. If we can keep Cesc and avoid bad luck with injuries we can have a fabulous attack.

  251. My, my, how different a page of Newsnow references looks now.

  252. About Turn ! Hut !

  253. i feel sorry for bordeaux for not getting anything on this transfer.

  254. Fuck off James.

  255. why everytime someone says something you dont like,you think its james.

  256. a fungus-coated right hand

    Great to see somebody figured out Chamakh rhymes with attack. Can’t wait to see him in action.

  257. “i feel sorry for bordeaux for not getting anything on this transfer.”

    Are you being sarcastic or are you genuinely sorry for Bordeaux?

    I hope it’s not the later, because those f*ckers didn’t accept a good 5 million or so for him last year, so I can’t imagine feeling sorry for them now.

  258. £7m G4E, but they tried to get £17m for a player in the last year of his contract

    And Yogi, if all else fails, I’ll even buy my own drink!

  259. 7 million makes them look like idiots even more Passenal.

    Last year alone he cost them 7 millions + his wages.

  260. Just more evidence of how shrewd Wenger is in the market. Let’s hope he’s a hit, I have a good feel about this fella.

  261. Catalan grease-ball and head of the Barca pikey clan Juan LaPorta is on his way to England to talk “seriously” about signing Cesc Fabregas from Arsenal. Not that his club can afford it as they are already about half a billion pounds in debt. And not that he will be around to abuse himself over his business prowess because another silver tongued Spaniard in a shiny suit is stepping up to increase the debt even further. “More than a club” they say. Yes, the whole fucking place is a festering overdraft pit. Even their captain Xavi Hernandez thinks that Cesc deserves to be winning things with the somewhat crude inference being that, as Arsenal won’t spend £59 million on players like the inestimable Zlatan Ibrahimovich, winning is nothing they are likely to be doing in the near future. He might be right. The EPL these days is a walking advert for mercenary greed and a level of debt-laden success only sustainable with a sugar daddy like the Sheik, Abramovich or even a down market benefactor like Joe Lewis who has been bailing Spurs out for years. The fact is that Barcelona cannot afford to pay the current market price for Cesc which is in the region of £60 million. But if he really wants to go then I reckon accommodations will have to be made and the pikeys of Catalunya will have to sell their gold-plated calor gas bottles and ornate caravans to raise the money.

  262. Passenal,

    Only way you’re going to get one , I fear.

    adam,

    Comparing Barcelona to “pikeys” does you no credit at all. Anything else you have to say gets lost in a mire of intolerant abuse.

  263. http://blog.emiratesstadium.info/2010/05/uefa-to-pass-financial-doping-rules-on-27-may-most-of-epl-wont-qualify-for-europe/comment-page-1/#comment-25715

    Excellent article on Untold.

    If Barca’s debts continue….heck, they won’t even be able to play in the Champions League with UEFA’s new financial rules!!!

    Even MORE reason for Cesc not to join the Fucking Cunts

  264. Anthony

    Swiss Ramble’s article is good and he provides the reason why Barcelona will not be affected in the way the UA article suggests: non-football activities.

    Uefa is going to insist the clubs are profitable. This means the football clubs, not other sports, not property development. Instantly, €22m is added to Barcelona’s profit as the other sports lose that amount each year.

    That more than covers new wages for players so it is not an issue as such.

    Uefa state clubs may not spend more than they earn so big club has about €200m each season to spend on players as a transfer budget – they just have to find the funds.

    Profit will be the issue they face and you watch how many suddenly turn one in.

    YW

  265. YW,

    Thanks for the kind words.

    That’s a great point on adjusting Barcelona’s P&L for the loss made by the “other sports”. I had not fully appreciated the implications for the UEFA Fair Play guidelines, but it makes perfect sense.

  266. perry groves: Shut up.

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