Cole, Cesc, World Cup Glory Boys And Win A Home Shirt
The media snowball has grown into an avalanche over Joe Cole to Arsenal. Nothing confirmed but all of the press are convinced that he will sign for Arsenal in early July after England make their quarter-final exit in South Africa, a few days after his contract expires. The usual domestic suspects have been joined in the chase by Lazio and AC Milan whilst Real Madrid will no doubt be linked very soon.
Who knows, perhaps it will even be a rerun of Allen / Sansom with Barcelona getting Joe Cole and then passing him onto Arsenal with Yaya Toure for Cesc. Certainly Toure’s Mr20% believes that deal is not dead but he is probably the only one.
Wenger made it clear that he rates both Cole and Cesc. His contradicted the Spanish media belief that Cesc has been told by the manager that he can go:
What is important is that Cesc has a great World Cup and that he comes back to Arsenal with a great desire to do well for the club. We want to keep our best players – that’s my huge determination – I built this team for years from 16 and 17 years of age with most of the players.
We want to continue to work with them because we feel we are very close, and strengthen the team in a very strong way.
Hardly the ‘Wenger is going to help Cesc move to the DNA Sampling Centre‘ that we have been frequently told is going to happen. More a case of ‘He leaves over my dead body‘. And quite rightly so. As a supporter, you want players who are committed to the club but equally, Cesc at 95% commitment is better than a lot of players who are 100% focussed.
The suggestion is that he will be here for one more year. Well, let’s get through this summer first. Of course, there is a way to go and with transfers out still to happen, FC Broke might be able to rustle up a few more euros for a proper bid which could change things.
Of Cole, Wenger said:
I like him (Joe Cole) as a player because when he played against us he always did a lot of damage. He can create impact through his creative play. He can dribble, he can pass, he can score goals.
The suggestion has been that Arsenal has too many similar players to Cole to warrant signing him. Firstly, a lot of those players have suffered injuries in the past whilst Cole, last season aside, has been relatively injury free. Quantity with their quality can never be detrimental to a squad unless dissatisfaction seeps in.
Elsewhere, Wenger is back in for Koscielny, £8.2m this time. If he and Cole are ‘Transfer Linked’, maybe a reverse hex works on mulitple inclusions and they then are freed into genuine targets? On the way out is apparently Eduardo who is considering his future.
World Cup Group A
The Greatest Show On Earth gets under way this afternoon with an immediate Arsenal interest in both of today’s fixtures. Carlos Vela gets the ball rolling in the opening game which sees Mexico take on hosts South Africa. Opening matches are typically uninspiring but have in recent tournaments provided surprising – and occasionally shock – results. This one might not live up to that expectation.
The group is a tricky one to decide who will qualify. France are undeserving favourites; their results have been indifferent at best, their only win in 2010 was against Costa Rica whilst they have failed to beat Tunisia and China. Yet they have the talent to make the last 16. The camp is apparently divided with some not wanting Henry there which just goes to show how ungrateful they are, for if he had not intervened, it might be Ireland we are talking of now. Likewise there is a clique who want Diaby to start ahead of Gorcuff but it would not be the World Cup without one of the ‘big’ footballing nations riven by strife.
Of the Arsenal quartet in their squad, only Sagna and Gallas are likely to be starters for France. Gael Clichy’s chances of usurping Evra were severely dented when the United player was made captain whilst Diaby’s supporters are probably going to find, for the first game at least, that he is on the bench.
Mexico, Uruguay and South Africa are all in reasonable form, winning where expected and losing just the same. The matches are key to progression: the winner of France v Uruguay will harbour realistic ambitions of topping the group so it will probably end in a draw. Mexico and South Africa will have identified this as a ‘must win‘ match, three points necessary and hope to pick up another two or three along the way.
Carlos Vela has a big opportunity to impress, to show a growing maturity in his play. If the ball is as true as its makers claim, forwards will have a field day and Frank Lampard probably score ten deflected goals. Vela ought to look to capitalise on that. He had enough opportunities against England to have forced a draw and his goal against Italy will boost his confidence, his first in nine appearances for his country. Before that barren run, he was averaging a goal every other game. A good World Cup for him personally would set him fair to challenge for a regular first team spot at Arsenal. I don’t think his country will do so well this time around with the Round of 16 being successful.
WIN A HOME SHIRT
Arsenal Football Club has kindly donated a new home shirt (to be released on July 29th) to the winner of this question:
Which Arsenal managers have played in the World Cup Finals?
Send your entries, along with your name and address, here or to aclfcomps[AT]btinternet[DOT]com, changing the bits in square brackets, with ‘New Home Shirt‘ in the subject line, to have a chance of winning. Closing date is midnight, Sunday 20th June 2010.
Good Luck to all who enter.
Posted on June 11, 2010, in Arsenal, Football, Premier League, Premiership, Soccer, Transfer Gossip, World Cup 2010 and tagged Arsenal, Football, Socccer, Transfer Gossip, World Cup 2010. Bookmark the permalink. 189 Comments.