Gibbs Return & New Signings Need Sales To Fit Them In

Arsenal’s injury woes eased slightly as Kieran Gibbs comeback has been pencilled in for the Boxing Day clash with Wolverhampton Wanderers at The Emirates. Of course this unofficial at the moment and The Sun is about as a reliable a source as The Mirror knowing that Robin van Persie is definitely going to sign a new contract.

Still it is positive news nonetheless although with Arsenal’s record of niggling injuries following anything more than a couple of weeks lay-off, Arsène may yet have to get his chequebook out in January, if only to cover a loan fee.

That is not impossible. Reported comments on the website are being interpreted as a sign that there will be activity in the coming transfer window. Wenger noted,

We lose players like Chamakh and Gervinho to the Africa Cup of Nations, so hopefully touch wood we do not get any injuries to our strikers. But if an opportunity turns up in that department then we will buy.

The situation, I must say, is a bit special. Economically the whole environment has changed and people suffer more. The clubs will suffer more financially and it’s much more difficult.

Maybe we will have some opportunities because we are in a good financial situation.

It is key that we recognise he has not confirmed he is buying a forward, simply that if a good deal can be made, the club will act. It is that definitive wording from a man so adept at being positively non-commital that is fuelling the drama.

The departure of Gervinho is not so much of a concern in that there are players who can fill that role. It is the rotation for van Persie. Chamakh might reasonably have expected to start against Leeds in the FA Cup, those duties will now presumably fall on Park’s shoulders.

The Korean is proving to be a strange buy. Wenger has repeatedly stated that Park has taken time to settle in England but recently that changed to he is settled and will feature more in the second half of the season. The cynical suggest that he is proof of the panic which had beset the club in the time of the Old Trafford debacle and Nasri’s departure. The generous go with the manager; most of us land somewhere between the two.

It seems improbable that a new signing would have featured so infrequently for the club. Yet that is the case and it is hard to criticise those who have written him off already; there is little evidence to suggest that he will be another one of Wenger’s Gems. It is this which provides the uncertainty.

Yet signing another player is not so simple, unless they are a player who is English or ‘naturalised’ via football’s ludicrously lax rules. We are told that Podolski is a target, Karim Benzema also. In order to fit them, Arsenal need to either omit someone such as Almunia from the Premier League squad or offload unwanted foreign players. It is not quite so simple as it seems as last Summer proved. I cannot see Squillaci for example, being delisted if he remains at the club, the risk of needing an experienced centre back is too high for that to happen.

Neither sale or delisting scenario is unbelievable although the latter seems less plausible for a club so financially frugal; it is after all, paying a player who can never play as opposed to one you chose not to pick. We shall see what transpires but with Arshavin capable of playing centrally if required and Walcott desirous of a central role, there are options. Yet none of them fill me with much confidence.

The other side of the coin is whether a world-class striker would want to join Arsenal knowing that they will not displace Robin van Persie. Not one of the names mentioned in the media is better than the Dutchman so it would mean either versatility to be able to play on the wing or a change in tactics to a more orthodox 4-4-2, which seems highly unlikely. And to be honest, if someone is relying on van Persie’s legendary injury problems to get a place in the team, that just smacks of a lack of ambition and self-belief. Do you want that sort of player at the club?

’til Tomorrow.

Posted on December 14, 2011, in Arsenal, Football, Premier League, Soccer, Transfer Gossip and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 386 Comments.

  1. So we getting a striker then?? whats wrong with Chamakh.

  2. duke

    Aside from a lack of confidence, a lack of goals and seemingly, a desire to leave, nowt.

    TBH, he needs games to get all of that back and Arsenal don’t have the luxury of giving him that time, especially as he is buggering off to the African Cup of Nations (which by the way I have no issue with).

  3. To all those people questioning Chamakh’s form, how many games has he played with the first team? I guess only one (against Stoke)? I do not expect much but I believe he will do a job.

  4. I would have thought Arsenal must be thinking of strike options with that matter of fact statement, translated seems to read “Yes of course I’ve had my eye on a couple of useful players; the market is short of cash and while we do have a bit ourselves you can never be certain until the deal is struck, discreetly please” and it’s welcome too.

    If I had a wish, it would be the impossible, to see Newcastle’s Ba in red and white. He is a terrific player, perfect in fact. He’s got the Adebayor and the Gervinho roles wrapped in one complete package. He’s not afraid of not scoring, the striker’s first and main weapon. It’s not gonna happen is it? Never in a million years. Not even faintly.

  5. Astute comments about RVP back up…..what about a player who’s flexible across the front 3 – in other words a player who can be RVP back up but who can also play out wide…stating the obvious I know but that way a top player won’t have to contemplate being a bench warmer unless RVP gets injured!
    Who that player might be, I’ve no idea- any suggestions?

  6. Neymar, baby. Neymar.

    Kidding

  7. I hate the transfer period, can January get here and end already?All this talk of who we might buy or sell and the merits of doing this or that as far as transfers are concerned make my head spin!

  8. ZP,
    Unlikely. And i believe Ba will play at the CAN for Senegal so even more unlikely….

  9. Chamakh does offer he team something when he plays. His problem, is that when a team emplys just one striker, the striker really needs to be a goal threat. Which he isn’t. He is another which would benifit from a strike parnter, or have plenty of midfielders who will get plenty of goals. Whilst our midfield will alwsy chip in, we don’t have a player of the ilk of Le Bob or Freddie who would regulalarly get 15+ goals per season.

    As YW pointed out, any stiker signing will have to be able to operate on the flanks as well as through the middle. They may well be RvP’s back up, but that does not mean they need to sit on the bench when he is playing.

  10. Nando Torres for 20 mil in Jan! Deal..
    There will surely be a few shifted out so that can cover his salary 😉

  11. MJ

    Yet he did not particularly do a good job against Stoke. I have a feeling he is not a player who can switch form on and off like a tap which is essential for a back-up striker. I have no doubt he will try hard and in time that might come good. But it is too much of a ‘might’.

  12. Surely the biggest question mark over Chamakh is the one in Wenger’s head. He’s been sat on the been numerous times this season and repeatedly not utilised. Even at 4-0 to the good against Wigan, Wenger chose to make a triple substitution, which did not include giving his out of form striker an opportunity to play himself into form, or even to prove his value.

    No doubt Wenger has his reasons but it looks to me as though Chamakh’s hurdles include not just being ‘out of form’ but ‘out of favour’.

  13. Duke you should do that more often, it is nice to see the first comment not be “first”

  14. Chamakh’s only problem is he can’t play out wide in the front three. he is similar to Eduardo just eds could play out wide quite well. but i still feel if Rvp was dropped then Chamakh could do a job as the main man.

    if Chamakh had the chances el torres ad e would be scoring.

  15. Passenal@ 8:58pm YESTERDAY
    “Someone solid that’d hit the ground running is what we need. Preferably before the Swansea game.

    My first choice
    Lukas Podolski.”

    Where is the evidence to support this assertion? We played Cologne in pre-season, Podolski was on the pitch, I do not recall anyone calling for him to sign on prior to the media telling us we should buy him.

    If Arsene decides he is the one, fair enough, but his failure at a bigger club in his own Country leaves me uncertain that he would settle in time to do the business for a club in another Country”.

    Passenal,
    Understandable u’d be worried.
    My observation of Podolski hints at a player who’s at his best playing for an open-minded coach against top opposition.
    Give him the freedom to compete with the best on a team where he’s not rated as the best player against tough opposition while helping him improve weaknesses in his game and you have a potential world class player on your hands.

    He is quick, efficient, intelligent, competitive, plays the beautiful footer, has a healthy ego and scores some truly powerful goals.

    He is but a big fish in a small pond @ Cologne. Unmotivated, like a soldier fighting from home..manning a drone in his pj’s. He needs to be in uniform..sharp, ready for inspection & war like he ALWAYS is for Germany!

    AW would easily bring the best out of him, probably even more than Klinsmann & Joachim Löw.

  16. Jonny – I have often wondered that. In some games once we look as though the game is won you think it would be ideal to play Park or Chamakh to get some game time. Either he does not trust them at all, or, after last seasons efforts he is really nervous when the game “should” already be over and done with.

  17. As it goes, I have seen a fair bit of Podolski and I think he would fit into our system very well. He would be what Reyes could have been. I think it would be a good transfer.

  18. Surely if we got someone like Podolski, Chamakh would be omitted, seeing as Podolski would be a Chamakh replacement?

    Vito Mannone is over 21, he could be omitted as well. That would leave us with Szczesny, Fabianski(?), Almunia and Shea. Besides, incase of freak injuries to everyone, the FA generally allows emergency loans.

  19. Is Finsburyparker around? Finsbury?

  20. Based on the fact you believe Chamakh still has something to offer, do you think we should consider changing formation when he is brought on?

    One could for example move to 442 (or similar) with RVP, or remove RVP plus another of the front 3 and bring on both Park & Chamakh. Or, failing that, one could sub RVP and move Theo and Chamakh into a front pairing..?

    I guess what I am asking, rather clumsily, is, if Chamakh still has value but it’s not as the focal point of a front three, what is the answer to best utilising him?

  21. Personally I don’t feel Chamakh is deployed correctly. When he first arrived he seemed to play much further forward, off the centre halves’ shoulder. He’s the closest Wenger is thing to a traditional centre forward Wenger is ever likely to sign but it strikes me he now tries to drop too deep and play one-twos forty yards away from goal. The goal against Blackburn should be the type of play he specialises in. Maybe he was just too old to start learning to play Wengerball.

  22. Chamakh’s case is strange. He was a key player for Bordeaux including in the CL. Never a lethal finisher (except headers) but fighting hard and constantly putting pressure on defenders….even played that role at AFC when he arrived. Not sure what happened to him but he does not seem able to regain his form with very limited playing time and in this league AW cannot afford to give him several games in a row before he starts delivering again (if that’s the issue)

  23. @Andy “or after last seasons efforts he is really nervous when the game “should” already be over and done with.”

    Yes I was wondering about this as a factor for a long time if this might be a factor and then I saw the Wigan game 4-0 up and RVP played to the final whistle. I have to say I was rather staggered by that decision. Must have been a right slap in the face for Chamakh.

  24. I agree with you about Podolski, goonerandy. Hes always been great for Germany. His move to Bayern didnt work out for him and he struggled for another season after his move nack to Koln. But hes back to the form that got him into the national team. Hes a direct player, shoots early and on sight but has a bit of craft and graft about him too. Hes only 26 too so hes just hittin his prime. Plus he can play centrally or in the Theo/Gerv role.

  25. I don’t trust your assessment on players, Andy. You tend to opine on players you know very little about with such an air of certainty that it makes me question your judgement.

    I like Podolski too, but we don’t need a winger that would be as defensively negligent as Arshavin. And if he can’t play in the middle, then what good is he for us anyway?

  26. Jonny – If we were chasing a game, and he was brought on to Partner RvP in a 442 I think it would prove effective. But as a direct replacement in our current formation he just does not cut it. Right club/wrong time for him I think. The situations which will suit him simply won’t surface enough for him to justify his place IMO.

  27. Loic Remy. I reckon he could be a very good player for us.

  28. Gains – “I don’t trust your assessment on players, Andy

    How will I recover from such a hammer blow?

  29. Gains – “You tend to opine on players you know very little about with such an air of certainty that it makes me question your judgement.

    Care to give an example? I am assuming of course that you have one, as I can’t imagine you would have just made up that statement to suit your point. Oh.

  30. maybe wenger knows at 4-0 up we will be back in 1st gear and maybe not the right time or a less chance for Chamakh to be able to get another goal??? maybe dark matter is the remnants of another dimension??

  31. Jonny, I mentioned a few days back how Chamakh played at his best with Arshavin n the team. (And I do not inten dto start the same discussion of AA playing in the hole)

    Also at 4-0 gainst Wigan, the manager must have been thinking of the goal difference factor.

  32. Please where is Ryo? He is not on Injury list and he is not on bench.

  33. Artem Dzyuba good russian playmaker with the right sort of stats( not overly prolific) for Wenger. would also be a good drinking buddy for Arshavin which could improve his form aswell.

  34. Chamakh is a useful multi-purpose player to have around, the new and I think better Bendtner I say, and a purpose for specific games, mainly off the bench. Is that too mean? I do like him, but I don’t think he was ever thought of as numero uno. It’s too early to unpack Park, but in an earlier life I recall the Japanese management style of long gestation and ‘settling in’, hence faster deployment later, a version of tortoise and hare and who wins the race strategy. It makes perfect sense that he features later rather than sooner, but again an option, not a replacement. We must look to buy in this case.

  35. Femi – I could be wrong but I think he is working on match fitness again after his last injury…

  36. Zim – I think one of his main problems is that he is anything but multi-purpose. He can only play the one role (striker) and is not enough of a goal threat to play there on his own.

  37. For Russians it’s chess buddy, not drinking buddy. Of course it’s foolish to attempt chess without a few Stolichnaya warm-me-ups.

  38. Also, people seem to forget that we have Rosicky who can play in place of Gervinho for the next 2 months. I actually want to see him next Sunday in place of Ramsey.

  39. “You tend to opine on players you know very little about with such an air of certainty that it makes me question your judgement”. Fucking hell talk about glass houses and stones! I’m guessing we all do it at times Gains but perhaps none more so than you.

    Just last night you categorically stated Theo was WAY better than Pato (my capitals). If you have to attack people all the time perhaps you do so without the hypocrisy?

  40. Podolski is as much of a winger as RVP is. Hes as much of a No10 as RVP is.Hes as much of a No9 as RVP is. Podolski is a very proficient forward who is at a club he loves but its a club that bounces up and down the top 2 divisions of bundesliga. We can offer him champions league level football in the run up to the euros….

  41. Multi-purpose = sometimes plays on the left or drifts right as per Bendtner, defends reasonably well in set piece threats, drops back a tad as needed, a definite goal threat from crosses and the odd toe poke, but otherwise there to generally harrass defence and hold ball until Theo gets there 4 seconds later – Chamakh.

  42. @ Jonny

    Agree with the need to change formation when playing chamakh or park…It takes an exception striker to play in the middle of a 4-3-3 a la RVP, Drogba..

    I personally believe that playing a 4-4-2 or 4-4-1-1 would work with Park of Chamakh, And the second striker ideally should be Arshavin..That way we are replacing RVP with Park/Chamakh + Arshavin in the DB role (I know I know but im a huge fan and I can mention AA and DB in the same sentence 😛 )

    It worked really well against Bolton in the CC IMO..

  43. Zim – Fair points, only he is not particularly outstanding at any of those things. He has not been a goal threat for over a year now. At all.

  44. We need a striker with the thighs of Pele, the accuracy of Eto’o, the volley of RvP, the salmon leap of Vermaelen, the strength of Drogba, the speed of Wright, the control of Bergkamp, the sneakiness of van Nistelrooy, the luck of moses, the love of god, with the words “born to play for THE Arsenal” tattooed on his chest. Deary me, wake up Wenger, any idiot can see this. Have you even tried the classifieds?

    But seriously, Thierryfor a few months a la Sol?

  45. My feeling is that RVP will sign an extension of the board offer him enough, stay for a few more years then make a big money move when he hits 30.

    I do agree with ZimPaul on Demba Ba. He looks the full package. He’ll only have 2 years left on his Newcastle deal come summer.

  46. G69@ 10:35,
    Loic Remy’s super BUT cup-tied.

    also, do u really think Deschamps would sell with them through to the next round?
    If u were Remy would u give up the chance to play in the CL & impress Laurent Blanc safeguarding your place @ Euro2012 for a position that could be back with Gervinho in Feb????

    “Gains – “I don’t trust your assessment on players, Andy”

    “Gains – “You tend to opine on players you know very little about with such an air of certainty that it makes me question your judgement.Andy”

    Be careful not to be too judgemantal lest u be judged!

  47. Good news on Gibbs. Hopefully it wont take him long to get back into the swing of things. It would make sense to keep our very solid back four in there until he is fully ready and sharp enough to slot in. And fingers crossed he doesn’t get another knock..

    On the striker thingy, it’s a really tough one. If Wenger is actually planning on using Park as RvP’s back up, he needs to start bringing him on at the 60 min mark to give him time to get into the game and find his feet. Chamakh is the same. But I would be tempted to go for another striker in Jan. Very unlikely, but it would be good. They don’t even have to be amazing, just someone who can finish chances consistently, and be able to link up play fairly well. I do like the sound of Podolski, as he has all the attributes required, but i haven’t seen enough of him to be sure. I like ZP’s suggestion of Ba, but is not suitable for this season due to ACN.

    I do think that another creator in midfield would be good though. Ramsey is getting there, but someone with that extra cutting edge to create something from nothing in tight games (apart from RVP!) would be good imo. Not sure who this would be exactly, if of course, it is needed at all… Good old transfer speculation eh..?

  48. Zim – “We need a striker with the thighs of Pele

    Ha, excellent stuff.

    The more I think about it, the more I think Henry on a short term would be a good thing. He could comfortably play anywehere across the front 3. Crucially he could easily play centrally if needed. He would be more of a goal threat than Chamakh or Park I would think.

  49. Hmm, yeah maybe Henry would be a nice stop gap… I haven’t seen enough of him in recent times to see if he would be capable of playing at this level these days. Anyone seen him play recently? Does he still cut the mustard?

  50. I think Santos’ spell in the team could serve Gibbs well. Arteta and Song (and Gervinho) are well used to covering at this stage. With Santos they’d have seen it as a necessity to help him adapt. Now it’ll be instinctive. Same with Theo on the right. Having to help out Jenks will have benefitted his defensive game.

  51. CORR: judgemantal = judge man atall…(lol)….judgemental

    This is our man:

    Lu-Lu-Lu!
    Lukas Podolski!
    Lu-Lu-Lu!
    Lukas Podolski!

    presently playing the best football of his career

    2011/12 German Bundesliga
    15 GAMES 14 GOALS 4 ASSISTS 43 SHOTS

    http://soccernet.espn.go.com/player?id=39759&cc=3888

    Lu-Lu-Lu!
    Lukas Podolski!

  52. wenger doesnt like to play cham/park cause he doesnt think they are good enough to play for a team that is hell bent on winning titles and trophies , the boss knows who is good enough and who isnt, dont you think (if he could) he would have the vast majority of the barca and madrid team players playing for us because they have the best players, the club want to be the best i assume but money must be the prob cause we have players in abundence who are playing at a club that they dont deserve to be at, if anyone thinks they do deserve to be here then you must be really disapointed in wenger leaving them out

  53. Good points Markus. Hopefully you’re right…

    Aman – they are some seriously impressive stats! Similar to a certain Dutchman I know of. They have convinced me, bring him in! 🙂

  54. Podolski would be a super signing.I had been recommending the name since 2006 WC.I do not jump about my seat and say get Podolski just cause the media comes up with the name. Reason – Media is purely based on false assumptions.Just like Austin 3:16 says Dont Trust Anybody.I take that exception when it comes to media.

    The reason i want Podolski is cos he is quick,got a powerful left foot,good technique and ball control and is built real strong and aint cup-tied for Europe.Gervinho would be off for the ACN and Podolski would get reasonable game time at left wing.If RVP is rested then we could still play Podolski up top cause we need someone who can finish off chances.I like Chamakh for his hold-up play but as a striker he is meant to score goals which he just cannot seem to do.Not even taking a shot on goal is the worst you can get from a striker and he does exactly that.He had a lethal header too,even that’s going wayward now.Park is a good 3rd choice striker to have if required.

    Podolski might take time to settle in.That’s a definite possibility.But i am real confident that he will settle in.This season we have played some direct football and he will be very much suited.He is off to the Euros too and would do anything to put his name at the top of his manager’s head.I just feel its time that Arsenal finally do take some financial risk in the transfer market.A cheeky 12 million bid would be perfect to begin with.Would take him for 20 million(maximum).Vertonghen would solve several problems.Can play left back,centre back and recently played DM for Ajax.Those two will make the squad really really
    strong.Cheers.

  55. The last time I felt this way was the Jan we signed AA.
    Podolski excites me!

    Imagine a counter attack with

    Gerv, RvP, Theo, Podolski
    or
    AA, RvP, Podolski, Theo
    or
    AA, Podolski, TR7, RvP
    or
    Gerv, TR7, Theo, Podolski
    or….
    i could go on….(AOC, Santos, Rambo, Diaby….boy I love ARSENAL)

    The sheer potency of these players together will strike fear in ANY opponent.
    And I mean ANY team!

    Adding Podolski does not nullify Chamakh or Park
    It gives us wing flexibility, more rest for RvP, another top top player, more cheekiness (+AA, Gerv, TR7) and improved efficiency. C’mon, 14 goals in 15 games?..RvP-type numbers!

    In ARSENE I trust!

  56. Aman – you like him then?! Get off the fence man, stop playing your cards so close toy our chest and let us know what you really think! 😀

  57. *to your* !

  58. boomergooner2728

    ba’s not out of the question. we’ve been linked before and he fits the bill of a wenger bargain buy at <10m even with january inflation (although i'm not positive hammers are looking to sell him). he's hard-working, has the ability to shoot and dominates in the air. he's doesn't knock a bad ball in either.

    i say we test the waters with taarabt or shaquiri, the latter of the two being more expensive but lacking in english footballing experience. on a side-note, i think we could be really dangerous if we could somehow lure llorente to london. he sort of floats under the radar but spuds were linked with the spaniard late in the summer and were turned off by his massive buyout clause (around 30m) but a man can dream can he not? just imagine arsenal with a striker that massive with gervinho and theo making his job look like child's play. the deal-breaker would be the price and the fitness resume but he's quality and comes with a handful of caps with the current would champions.

    whatever we end up doing i firmly believe that wenger is privy to the position our unbeaten run has put us in. a win at city closes the gap to just 6 before the holiday fixtures of which we have an easier road ahead than others at the top. fergie's boys look shaky and with their hospital bills approaching their city's transfer kitty i think they are suspect aside from only needing to drop 4 points due to our impending win at the emirates. throw thursday night football (<– isn't it a joy to say/write/think about) and we could pass them up sooner than the cynics think. i'm not worried about spuds or chelsea in the least so my point here is that we've got a real chance to do this (YES i know we've been been here and closer before) if we are smart about it.

    i am one of the sad souls who believe in the integrity of our youth policy and keeping our proverbial willies in our trousers when it comes to the ridiculous fees paid for players not guaranteed to succeed. however, this is a january in which buying another attacking threat is absolutely necessary. gervinho, despite his *occasionally* erratic finishing and decision-making, is a nightmare for the both backs on whatever side he attacks and can create a moment of brilliance out of nothing. he has displayed this talent on multiple occasions and i think ht has given theo both competition and inspiration to elevate his form as well. to replace the ivorian's work rate, assists and threatening runs i think we need to find someone like him of REAL quality (hazard, shaquiri, neymar, muniain, etc.) and/or a poacher/arial threat like soldado, benzema, bent (yes, bent) or ba as backup for one flying dutchman.

    the addition of a tandem priced similarly to ba+hazard (preferably that one) with a possible loan for coquelin (which he deserves) and the exits of denilson, diaby (although i like the frenchie), arshavin and almunia would result in a fortified attack and free up wage space, which we've needed to do for some time. add that to super jac's return and we'll have a fortified attack, solid midfield and defense glad to welcome back the likes of gibbs, SANGA and jenkinson. i wouldn't mind adding cahill and loaning a the youngster of the three or miquel but we'll see how that develops after having held serious talks for the player just a few months ago.

    before you make the valid point that there aren't a boatload of players with the quality we need who wont be cup-tied, i think, as i said earlier, that wenger is a just a TAD more football savvy than i and will put us in position to compete in both league and europe with january moves that will help this season go down in history. he can't just come out and say we're looking for support because park and the russian wont get us anywhere but i'm quite confident the club is working on the situation. i know there are doubters that my acknowledgment of my acknowledging that this is what we've said every year is cliche to acknowledge. granted. if you cant believe that we really have a shot this year barring van persie getting another well deserved second booking then choose another club because even today i KNOW that arsenal fc is the best club in england .

  59. Johnny,who would you like to see at Arsenal in Jan?

  60. Apart from Podolski,the players i really wanna see in the red and white soon are Wilshere,Sagna and Diaby(Just play 45 minutes and i will call that a miracle).

  61. It would be nice just to be able to play our strongest 11 (whatever that is) for a couple of games. Stupid injuries.

  62. Arsenal,Arsenal Arsenal, We all know how good we are . What i think we need to do is buy a Sriker from EPL to boost our team and backup RVP. Or the Legend HENRY on loan, I don’t think he will ask for a big pay pack when we made a statue of him.

  63. Oh and personally I’d pass on Vertonghen.
    The only defender I presently covet is Marseille’s CB Nicolas N’Koulou.

    I’d gladly wait till Summer or even next January for this CB from Song’s homeland.
    And even after we let go of Squilly, only if AW disapproves of Bartley or a serious injury blow to Djourou.
    N’Koulou is class. Swift, strong, agile, a good leaper & only 21*

  64. He played very well against us in the CL.
    My first viewing…very impressive.
    And he’s not averse to being a gooner.

    www1.skysports.com/…/Arsenal-interest-flatters-N-Koulo

    Till the summer…..

  65. As far as defenders go what about the Sakho from PSG. Only seen him play a few times but he looks a monster. Still, we are faily well set with CB’s now though.

  66. Glad you mentioned Theo as a striking option YW.

    He started his career there and wasn’t at all bad at playing up top. We have seen on various occasions he can produce the goods if we get the players to support him in the final 3rd. It will mean slightly changing the system, because Theo isn’t a player who can hold up the ball with back to goal, nor has he got the vision to spray the ball about and unlock defences. We can’t expect anyone to come into the team and play the same role Van Persie plays, every player has their own attributes, and his are integral to our attacking play.

    Van Persie has taken over part of Cesc’s role in becoming the provider while managing to become an efficient goalscorer. You take that guy out the team and it is extremely hard to replace. There is hope that others in the team are contributing. Arteta, Ramsey, Song and Gervinho have been in amongst the assists and goals, so take out Van Persie and the responsibility will fall to others. Whether they take it or not is another question, hopefully we don’t see them instances arise too often this season but Van Persie will need rest at one point or another. I think sticking the right player behind Theo in an attacking midfield role will work pretty well.

    We need some alternatives if we are going to keep up the pace. Chamakh has gotta step up to the plate, or we most accomodate his abilities more. We know what he can produce, whether its confidence or the system that is holding him back, we need to find a solution to that or his inclusion in the team will continue to be uninspiring.

    Not looking to put a downer all!! Very happy with the turnaround, I think we will give City a very tough test on Sunday and put them in their place. Just hope we find a plan B and C for when we could need it later in the season.

  67. Aman “The only defender I presently covet is Marseille’s CB Nicolas N’Koulou… He played very well against us in the CL.”

    You know who else I was impressed with in the CL? Hummels who plays for Dotmund. He was impressive against us and even kept Theo very quiet. And he’s only 22!

    Alright VP scored a few against their defence but that’s hardly surprising.

  68. I don’t know if Henry is the answer. Still a great player, but the presence of a Legend on the field didn’t exactly work in his final years with us. Imagine… the return of our greatest player, the hype and expectation will certainly prove to be more of a distraction than solution. It could prove otherwise but that is my take on it.

  69. We have learned from all No 2s up front that the position is a career wrecker. Strikers must play and they surely will not. Even with vPs injury record you cannot rely on enough games to keep you sharp.

    This means that the cover must come from: the wings; juniors or someone between things, on a loan or borrowed from another league (Henri-esque)

    If you are not satisfied with the bench and decide to go big: 50 mil for Tores? Lol why would they come anyway to sit on the bench and you further urinate on Park and Chamakh and spend money to kill people off.

    Theo wants a go and the Ox is ready cover. Ryo or AA can wing it and we have the Chamakh and Park on the bench. There is cover all over the place and you do not have to look far. The midfield is rammed and we still have Diaby and Wilshere to come back.

    We only need to see how the backs are covering serious injury issue to see that this squad is already deep and coping!

    Good enough? We will see, but there is little need to spend the Fab money on another striker in January.

    Nice to see the Tottenhots tottering early. Make or break for them is Feb/March looking at their fixtures, but we have got to our first big test – since we were pipped to the win by them – by getting to 5th, which is as much as we could demand and expect.

    The match against $hiite-y is a real test, the first real test of the rest of our season and maybe will show what inadequacies there are in our squad. Until then I am unconvinced that we should be spending.

  70. G69,
    Pato’s goal ratio cannot be sniffed at, especially considering his age and the league he plays in. So what if he is hyped? Won’t be the first and won’t be the last. Much, much worse players than him have been hyped even worse.

    Its not like you’re averse to exaggeration yourself.

  71. Hi Sid, a while back I’d have had a few suggestions but at present I’m a bit stumped. I think it is a real pity we missed out on Jones – I love the way he plays and he’ll clearly be an excellent player but, given the consensus seems to be that he’ll end up a CB, he would have to work his way ahead of Koz and TV to name but two. Still he can play almost anywhere and has a phenomenal work ethic.

    I’m of the belief we need a striker but I’m at a loss as to who to suggest. I think Tevez is a remarkable striker, and would grace any team, but there is no way we need that loose cannon in the squad – and we could never afford him anyway.

    The truth is Wenger has done such an amazing job – we just don’t want for much as a squad. Maybe we don’t even need a new striker but one has to suspect that if we lost RVP now there isn’t anyone who has had the playing time to slot in to even half fill those enormous boots.

  72. Henristic, we don’t exactly have a reputation for buying hyped players tho. Other than Arshavin and youngsters I can’t think of many.

  73. The problem with Chamakh is that, this season more than the past couple of years, RVP is not just banging in the goals, but also being a big creative influence. We often see Robin be part of a slick passing move in midfield and then he manages to be at the end of that move as well to score it. Chamakh is hard-working but he just can’t work in midfield and be in the right positions up front. With Cesc in the side it was obviously easier because the 1 in our 4 5 1 could concentrate on playing up front, but without Cesc’s creativity it’s always difficult as a lone striker unless you are as good as VP.

  74. Markus,
    I wasn’t asking that we buy Pato. Was aonly saying he’s not a bad as G69 was making out.
    But what you say is probably true for most other clubs apart from Chelsea and Mancity. Hyped players tend to be expensive and few clubs are able to buy more than a couple. We’d had our fair share in DB10, Arsha, Mert, and youngsters like Ramsey.

  75. Markus,
    Good call on Hummels. Only 22? Wow.
    Wouldn’t he cost a bit? Too important a player for Dortmund (& Germany) for a quick AW plug ‘n’ pay.
    Kinda like Goetze, Reus or Hazard right now.
    The spotlight’s on all of them at the moment.

    Podolski’s exceeded his 15 minutes
    & looks ready for a challenge.

    SAgooner,
    lets be honest..we lack EFFICIENCY in front of goal even with RvP!
    the Fulham game was particularly painful proof of this.
    To turn this corner we need an experienced cool cat who “never hesitates to put the ball in the net” (re: Snoop on Dr Dre’s “Rat-tat-tat-tat”)

    Theo, Gerv, Rambo, AA, TR7, Chamakh & Park need to be shaken, stirred & doubly-inspired.
    The RvPodolski tandem could set a truly high standard thats sure to fire up the whole team.
    Those that cannot step up do not need to play.

    We are the ARSENAL
    We can win the CL, FA cup & EPL
    But ONLY if we take it up a notch.

  76. I think Podolski would be a good signing based on what I’ve seen of him for the German national side. He has that felixibility to play left or central of the front three. I wasn’t very impressed with Remy when we played Marseille, maybe it was because we restricted his chances?

    After watching Chamakh for over a season now I think he’s a poor player at the Premier League/European Cup level. His touch, and therefore his ability to hold up the ball, is poor, his passing, when he finally gets hold of it, is poor and whatever goal touch he had when he first arrived has deserted him. I can’t fault his effort at all, but looking at the whole package I can’t see him as an Arsenal player for much longer. Maybe if he were in the Spurs side and being served by two wingers who get to the byline and cross the ball like Bale and Lennon he’d be better, but we need much more from our central striker than he can seemingly provide.

    I don’t know if it would be possible and it would probably cost a lot of money, but one player I would love to see in an Arsenal shirt is the “other” striker at Real Madrid, Gonzalo Higuain. He is frequently a sub there, but when he starts he scores plenty of goals. Probably a pipe dream, but if we’re really in a “good financial situation” then how about a cheeky bid? They could then go and do their best to get Neymar to replace him. We could rotate him and van Persie without much of a drop-off in quality up front at all.

  77. So you are saying that Higuain is on about the same level as Robin, Block4?

  78. Gonzalo Higuain would be a far better fit than Benzema anyway. And a better player IMO.

  79. Well they’re different types of players Evil. I was just trying to think of someone who doesn’t seem to have a problem hitting the ground running, as it were, when he’s been on the bench which is what many on here think is the problem with Chamakh. He’s more of an out and out goalscorer than van Persie, less of a playmaker, but overall if you give him chances he will score plenty. We need someone who the manager can trust to take the load of Robin and at the moment, it doesn’t look like either Chamakh or Park is that man.

  80. Higuain, Benzema, Tevez, Torres, Ba, Neymar, Pato ??……..all fantasy.
    Can we get a grip here?
    Too important to their clubs. Cup-tied.Too expensive. overhyped. Long term contracts.

    Any other realistic striker options people?

  81. I strongly doubt Mourinho would sell Higuain – he scored 3 hat tricks in 2 weeks this season! I think I’d take him over Benzema. He’s 24 and only going to improve. Yeah, he’d do alright.

    @Sid – revising my previous answer, I still retain a strong yearning and a glimmer of hope [of signing] for Hazard. My skills at reading the potential of young players is mixed at best but I reckon he could go on to be one of the greatest players of his generation. Mad skills for 19yo.

    Goes without saying perhaps but Wenger would be perfect for the lad.

  82. @ feygooner

    Mannone counts as a home-grown player and therefore not one of the seventeen non-home-grown, so we don’t create any space by de-listing him. The Arsenal PL squad has the maximum of seventeen non-home-grown players, plus five home-grown players – the maximum is eight.

    Interesting post, YW. As Bob N7 suggests, a good candidate to add would be someone who can play not only as a central striker, but who could also play as a winger or attacking midfielder. Hmm, do you think Rooney fancies a change of scenery?

    Henry is an interesting possibility, but it’s tricky from a squad perspective as I think he would take one of the seventeen places. To me, opting for him seems like more of a short-term punt, if needed, perhaps until we sign a striker later in January?

  83. I agree Aman, fantasy. But Podolski is realistic. I would also be tempted by Sow of Lille, would be available at a reasonable price, keen to hook up with Gervinho too, but the problem is CL (?) & ACN.

    Higuain would be a great signing, but doubt it would happen. He’s cup tied too.

    The more i think about it, the more likely it is that Park will get his chance. Wenger must have seen something in him, and hopefully we will get to see this after he has had some more time on the pitch…

    I would still love to have Goetze or Hazard at the club – but both seem to be another one of those rumour mill players, ones which will end up being out of our price range.

  84. Block4 – Wenger did say t’other day that we would see much more of Park in the 2nd half of this season.

    It really would be the most remarkable of seasons were we see the return of Wilshere, coupled with more playing time for those players many of us are longing to see – Oxo, Ryo maybe even Afobe.

    It would certainly pose new questions and open up an embarrassing wealth of options.

  85. Podolski wld b great but wil Arsene pay the price; Loic Remy seems a gd player & not a bad price! I think Junior Hoilett is a similar player & wld b a gd price – reckon he wld do a gd job for Arsenal.

    If Wenger wld flash the cash HUlk is very good as is Pato, wot about Torres ot Tevez? I kno Tevez is a liability but £20 M for these players is a bargain wot do u reckon????

    Eduardo Vargas is gd cover for a left wing back/ left wing & scores goals & within Arsene’s budget!

    In Arsene we trust!!!!!!!

  86. “Imagine… the return of our greatest player, the hype and expectation will certainly prove to be more of a distraction than solution.”

    Who has been suggesting a return for Bergkamp then Chris?

  87. I do hope we don’t sell Tomas – still think a fit Rosicky is a fabulous option to have – though I do wish he’d find his lost shooting boots – I’m happy to help look behind his sofa if he feels it would help. They were such marvellous shooting boots too.

  88. At 250k/wk Tevez is impossible.

  89. true gooner.
    wt ti fec u on abt?

  90. Demba Ba? May aswell roll out Peter Odjemwinjie

    Jesus.

    Why do we have to consider signing a player who is a suitable back up? Why dont we focus on a player who will believe himself good enough to command a starting berth??

    Competition for places is critical. We dont want to follow down the route of last year and have untouchable positions, then a bench full of players who dont believe they can start.

    We have three major competitions to play for, and a front line that consists of two players who have never finished a full season, two players leaving for the ACN, an unknown Korean and Arshavin.

    Signing Mertesacker & Arteta (fully established mature quality) has been great for the team.

    Lets STRENGTHEN this window, and not cross our fingers and hope nothing bad happens.

    We 100% need another attacking option. A player who is developed, a player who believes he should start.

    Over to you multi million pound scouting network.

  91. @Jonny
    Agree that we should keep him. He is a useful player and I feel that he has been doing rather well this season so far, especially in the CL. Also, losing him would kind of leave us exposed in midfield because — at least until Wilshere returns — Rosicky and Ramsey are the only players we have for the creative playmaker position at the top of our midfield triangle.

  92. Higuain and Benezeman is wishful thinking.

    Mourinho uses both frequently as he rotates his squad to compete on all fronts.

    You need two quality strikers in your squad.

  93. Nowt to do with Arsenal but this is really funny.

  94. Well when I say nowt I found it because of the reference to Yossi the goon

  95. Let’s fucking hear it then Luke? You haven’t mentioned any names you numpty.

  96. Theres loads of those George, fricking funny.

  97. So you don’t think we need to strengthen then Markus?

  98. Why would I pander to your game.

    ” Give me some names Luke”
    “Errr, Cavani, Neymar, Hazard, Goetze,”
    “You idiot Luke only Man City can buy every great player in the world, we dont have any money”
    “Err ok, Anelka / Henry, heck even a bid for Drogba or TORRES”
    “Dont be ridiculous Luke, only Man City can 50000000000 a week”

  99. Luke.City fans think they need to strengthen,Madrid fans also.
    A rather silly question, if I might be so bold.

  100. Luke .Calm down dear.Its only a football forum.

  101. Before the “Bring Back Thierry” bandwagon gains too much momentum, anybody checked whether Ted Drake is still available?

  102. Great post yogi.

    We have finally put together a squad with some defensive smarts and some grit and we are playing a style of football that we can reasonably hope will be consistent. Much as I love defense and believe that good defending has to be the foundation of any top level team I also recognize that we can’t continue to win 1-0 forever. We have lots of money in the bank. One really top notch player to play on the front line with RVP and to rotate into his slot when needed could make us great. I say we shoot the moon just this once and even if he is overpriced just for once bite the bullet and do something that can make this team special. Not sure who that player is but there are plenty of really good players in Europe whose teams could be tempted with a realistic bid.

  103. Unfortunately
    Luke you have rather shot yourself in the foot.

    Anelka Is going to China on 8 million per year = No
    Henry is running on empty for the last 4 years= No
    Both Tores and Drogba would be asking in excess of £150k per week=No

  104. @merlot – a good point – I’ll see if he’s interested.

    May I borrow your shovel?

  105. Bill.you mean tempted with an unrealistic bid ?

    Like the Eto thing from last year Bill.
    Remember ?Buying a jacket that you really could not afford ,just to give yourself a lift

  106. There are a lot of really good players that we could easily afford. We started the last transfer window with a pretty large war chest and the made a big profit this summer. It wouldn’t kill us if we moved out of our comfort zone just this once. The trophies we might win would be just as sweet. Certainly there is risk involve. However, we have the best scouting network in the world and Wenger is the best talent evaluator in the world. Do you really think his ability to evaluate talent ends when the price goes over 12M? NOT!!! . This team just needs a player or 2 to make it really special and those type of players don’t come cheap.

  107. Henry is under contract to the Red Bulls and they have a training camp in February before the start of the season in early/mid March. It would have to be just a month and a half loan! Not happening… I watched a few games and Henry had a pretty nice season–14 goals in 26 games plus 4 assists in the MLS.

  108. Geo, Sow not a Jan option..cup-tied, ACN-bound, unproven @ highest level….summer consideration not Jan.

    I agree Goetze and Hazard will be overpriced. Truth is we can do without them both. We have bad lil’ Jack, an effervescent TR7, feisty Ramsey, articulate Andrei & the god Vassiriki (if he ever shakes off injury).

    I can see Madrid buying @ least one of them, not playing them enough (re: Sahin, Canales, Altintop..), and offloading a couple to teams like Inter, Arsenal, Bayern who would better utilize them.

    Yeah, so if Lille and/or Dortmund overplay their hands, they will not be wearing red & white this summer.

    true gooner @1:34,
    Hoilett?…hmm. I like but nowhere near top goalscorer. We have Theo, Ox & Ryo..Campbell may get workvisa in summer
    Eduardo Vargas?…no track record in EU. Chile? …too risky…Campbell may get workvisa in summer

    Again people,

    Q: We need a striker that’s:
    efficient, flexible, not cup-tied, not going to ACN, steps up standards, got a good 2-3 years left, who wants to be “the best”, disciplined, has played at the highest level, seasoned international, creates for others….Arsenal-class.

    (IG screams from his office:…”handsome, will sell jerseys, attractive to the ladies, heteros & metros”)

    and can match or beat these stats:
    14 goals in 15 bundesliga games, 4 asists, 43 shots, 43 goals in 95 internationals.

    anyone else?

  109. David Villa has reportedly been transfer listed by Barcelona according to Spanish-based newspaper Marca.

  110. Honestly if history is anything to go by our next record breaking goal-scorer is already in the squad.

    Theo for me.

  111. Geo and Limestone,

    I saw Henry play in Colorado when the Red Bulls came visiting last summer. He was miles ahead of everyone on the pitch technically and, most importantly, mentally. It looked like he was disinterested in the match for the vast majority of the game because he was thinking on a different plane than the rest of his team. Not good for either Henry or the Red Bulls. Still, his class was still evident as he scored the only goal for the Red Bulls (they lost 4-1). He made something very hard look absolutely mundane beating a well positioned keeper and defense as he swept a pass into the far corner, just inside the post, on the run. Absolute class.
    As for any loan stretch with The Arsenal, it would be excellent, and as long as properly managed by the club and Thierry in the press, would not be too much pressure for either. Still, I fancy that Arshavin and Park will be given the time whilst Gervinho is at the ACN to prove they still belong with an extended run of games.

  112. Villa would be an awesome addition. Fits everything we need.

  113. George! It was just a bit of fun fella.

    And all thats happened is you have played the role of resident ACLF’er perfectly!

    🙂

  114. I do have some doubts that Chamakh and Park will cut it in the long run, though for Park its to early to say.
    Like many others here I personally think we should go for Podolski and if we cant get him Huntelaar, in my opinion, could be the second option. Both of them are in their mid 20ies and have vast experience, both domestic (german league) and international(CL and national teams).
    I currently see Podolski as the better fit for Arsenal, but with Huntelaar we can play RvP in the attacking midfielder role, currently held by Rambo. Its not because Rambo hasnt been good for Arsenal, cause he have. No its to give more flexability to the team.

    If we have to sell a player to make room for one of those 2, well…..tbh just release Almunia. He is not worth much anyway. Negotiate a deal with him and let him go. Ohh and plz try to get rid of Diaby. He is very erratic in his play and is often injured. Get in a solid replacement, maybe give Benny a contract since he is a player that plays well each time we put him in there, regardless of his match-form.

  115. Mr. Orange doing well for himself. That non-spitting thing seems an age ago, but for a while most of us hated him rather nicely.

  116. While it’s fun to go out shopping for 10-15-20m pound strikers at Xmas, nothing better really, I have this sneaking suspicion, can’t think why, that Wenger and scouting “consultants” have been pouring over footage, possible options, history of a dozen players, and what name may pop out of the hat will send ACLFers scouring the internet. Who? From where? I am hoping for a particularly exotic name and origin myself.

  117. I think Rosicky will go to Wolfsburg in Jan. He will get 1st team football there, and at 31 is probably he last chance of a big signing on fee.

  118. David Villa, an extremely classy player as he should be for a cool 35-40m euros. Big mistake to write off Park just yet. I assume he wasn’t brought in for fun.

  119. Fun?

    Merchandise 😉

  120. Zimpaul:

    I know you are right.

    I know it’s not the arsene way but damn wouldn’t it be fun just this once to bring in someone like villa. Think how much that could help this team. We have enough money that we could do it and we really don’t have any other significant needs in the squad so why not? The only real reason that I can think of is that it’s not the way we usually do things.

  121. I can see Arsene spending big bucks perhaps, but not on Villa. If he does it will be somebody who is younger I would imagine.

  122. Didn’t Villa have a bust-up with Messi or something? Why would we want that kind of ego in the team again?

  123. Why do you presume that the bust up was Villa’s fault?

  124. LimparAssist | December 14, 2011 at 10:24 am

    Hello!

  125. I’d take a risk on Villa’s ego. Wishful thinking, but he would be an excellent addition. Can play across the line, very good finisher and very good link up play. Not a Wenger signing though unfortunately. Worth the risk though imo…

  126. When did duke become so thoughtful?

    More duke, more.

    Don’t lose all that curmudgeonly streak that we all love though.

  127. RvP needs a rest. Theo goes central, Oxtail right, Andrei left (supplemented by Park). You know I’m right.

  128. Realistically I know villa or someone like that is not gonna happen, but it would really make sense based on where our club is at right now. It would not have made sense 5 years ago but it’s frustrating that we have to remain tied to a set of rules that is out dated. Our financial situation and our situation on the pitch have changed from those days.

  129. OK, done, Podolski it is then. Good-oh. Happy days. Next item of business, dark matter, trailing dimensions, and neutrinos faster than Usain Bolt. Anybody?

  130. Now I will admit that Chamakh is not where he needs to be however, I am not sure where Block4 gets this from.

    “After watching Chamakh for over a season now I think he’s a poor player at the Premier “League/European Cup level. His touch, and therefore his ability to hold up the ball, is poor, his passing, when he finally gets hold of it, is poor…”

    He isnt scoring but I dont agree with any of this part.

  131. Villa of course announced that we wanted an Arsenal bid, before Barca. What about that hidden clause in the Cesc agreement of sale that says 50% off any player or Cesc whoever comes first, in return. Ivan? Make the call.

  132. Hello, Fins – hope all good down the park. Quick question – was it you that told me TNHOF was designed with enough space between terrace and pitch for us to dig down, lower the pitch, and drop a load more seating in? Or have I imagine that??

  133. Well, in the match against Olympiacos he created plenty of opportunities for other players in the first half, especially because of his good hold-up play and decent passing. Our best chance in the first half, the Frimpong shot that rattled the side-netting, came after Chamakh did well to keep the ball and play the necessary pass.

  134. Might the Chamakh conundrum not also be a reflect that plan B doesn’t often work. Playing Chamakh changes the entire dynamic of the team, particularly between the midfield and the attack, as he is so different to van Persie. It might be observed that, in light of Barca’s experiment with Zlatan, a team is better to focus on improving and supplementing your plan A (Sanchez has some similar qualities to Messi).

    That just leaves the easy task of finding a van Perise replacement! But on a more serious note, it might mean the Walcott isn’t the best option for centre forward either.

    Perhaps a little more flexibility in terms of tactics could help. It’s probably easier to adjust the offensive shape than disrupting the entire playing style by introducing a player who just doesn’t fit.

  135. Hello, ZimPaul – I showed your words on what makes ACLF special to my girlfriend the other weekend – by way of an explanation for lots of tip tappy over the years. She didn’t say so, but I knew it’d won her over. Top man.

  136. Hello Gris Gris – should I go see it then? I have had a few people warn me off it so haven’t been yet in case they’ve RUINED it. Fuckers. (You can tell I’m skeptical)

  137. @Paul-N | December 14, 2011 at 3:59 pm

    I don’t think Chamakh’s all-round play is particularly good, his first touch and passing in particular are not up to scratch at the level Arsenal operate at. I admit that he may be looking bad in comparison to some of the other top quality ball players at the club who have instant control, vision and crisp passing, but if you want to be centre forward for a club like Arsenal then that’s the level required. Having the ball bounce off you when it’s played up is not acceptable.

  138. Villa is so good he is capable of going on a 17 game non scoring run whilst playing for a team that creates more chances than you can shake a stick at.He would have to be very cheap at his age,
    Luke.I too was having a bit of fun in return.You know,joining in the banter.Thought you would have seen that.

  139. we can agree to disagree on that one Block4, he is excellent at holding up the ball and has some excellent touches. For me his biggest problem is that he is too unselfish, it would help if he looked to score instead of looking to pass. The difference between a confident Chamakh and one without is plain to see.

  140. We will have to differ Paul-N.

  141. @Block4
    http://arsenalist.com/video/?id=C4UR6uMv4VEhQZOo&t=videa
    Would you kindly take a look at that video? In particular the first two scenes which feature Arsenal chances — both created by Chamakh. Last season he usually created 2 chances a match, which is almost on par with what Jack and Nasri did, while slightly better than Theo’s rate. I just don’t think that there is a lot of evidence to back up that he is not at least decent with the ball at his feet. His finishing is as clinical as that of a 16 year old, but he can hold the ball up and he can create chances.

  142. Andy: “Care to give an example? I am assuming of course that you have one, as I can’t imagine you would have just made up that statement to suit your point. Oh.”

    “Pato averages pretty much a goal every other game. There is no doubt that Theo is faster than Pato, but so what? So is Wayne Routeledge.”

    “Henristic – He has not started that many gamnes as other players are ahead of him. As you pointed out, when he does start he often scores. I don’t really know that much about him to be honest.”

    A whole hour and a half before your response to at 10:30AM this morning.

  143. Yes Evil, I did see that game. He did create those chances, but I’m talking more about his overall game. If you think of the player you really didn’t rate in an Arsenal shirt I’m sure there’s a video out there of them playing well. I will be concentrating on him more the next time I see him play in the flesh to see if my observations stand up after people’s defence of him here, knowing my luck he’ll start against Wolves when I won’t be there!

  144. Think I agree with u Paul-N:

    “For me his biggest problem is that he is too unselfish, it would help if he looked to score instead of looking to pass. The difference between a confident Chamakh and one without is plain to see”

    David Villa ain’t coming to Arsenal…forgit that!

    goonerandy WTF??:
    “I think Rosicky will go to Wolfsburg in Jan. He will get 1st team football there, and at 31 is probably he last chance of a big signing on fee”.

    Blasphemy!
    Our Mozart leaving???
    How dare u andy? Magath? VWolfsburg?
    Keep your taxbreak money to yourselves.
    Tomas Rosicky will retire in red & white!

    I smell an online petition pronto……….. Jonny, where u at?

    Rosicky’s going nowhere!!!
    Rosicky’s going nowhere!!!
    Rosicky’s going nowhere!!!

  145. Jonny: “Fucking hell talk about glass houses and stones! I’m guessing we all do it at times Gains but perhaps none more so than you.

    Just last night you categorically stated Theo was WAY better than Pato (my capitals). If you have to attack people all the time perhaps you do so without the hypocrisy?”

    No glass houses here, my man. When I talk about players it is because I’ve seen them play. When I don’t, I say so up front. With regards to Pato vs Theo, I’ve seen Pato play since his youth team days with Brazil and have watched him throughout his short career at Milan. Care to make any more idiotic assumptions, Jonny?

  146. So what striker are we all going with then?? and who is going to send Wenger the e-mail of our decision??

  147. Henristic: “G69, Pato’s goal ratio cannot be sniffed at, especially considering his age and the league he plays in. So what if he is hyped? Won’t be the first and won’t be the last. Much, much worse players than him have been hyped even worse.

    Its not like you’re averse to exaggeration yourself.”

    I recall you flubbing his stats big style. You said he was on 20 goals a season and hadn’t scored any less than at Milan. I would keep my mouth shut with regards to exaggeration if I were you.

  148. I will do it duke .I have him on speed dial.
    How the hell do you think the incompetent old codger turned the season around?
    Under his own steam?Pfft.

  149. I actually think that Chamakh has decent finishing abilities but he is not a link up player like RVP and not as skill full. He is more of a target man and I believe we should play more towards his strengths when he plays.

    Supercod @10:27 am, is in line with how I think about the Chamakh situation.

  150. Jonny, I did read what you said about Messi in regards to him playing every match. Sound’s kinda silly don’t you think? Messi plays every match because he is that vital to Barca winning. He scores the most goals and has the most assists for his team, and they are not the same without him. That, with all the top notch players they have and all the money spent. Go figure that one out.

  151. Hiya Limps,

    The Park is cool. Might take a trip over to the wrong side of the tracks (Haringey), there’s a pub called The Faltering Full Back…

    I need to check my links, will have to get back to you on that. Probably tomorrow.
    I think that there is scope to lower the pitch as one option for increasing capacity in the future but the first option would be to extend the upper tier back a bit, or to plonk some more seating ontop of the existing upper tier. If I remember correctly, any expansion will be dependant on improved transport infrastructure, safety concerns and requirements, that kind of thing. They’ll need to sort out the long dark tunnel at Arsenal tube, and other stuff.

  152. I can’t really see Villa playing outside of Spain as he’s a diver and wouldn’t have a good time in England because refs aren’t as soft as they are in Spain. .

  153. Shaqiri is a good long term prospect. I prefer him to Goetze and Hazard.

  154. Paul-N, I was hoping to see Jenks and Chsmakh on the pitch together. The brief glimpse we saw of the boy demonstrated he can put in a wicked cross – the kind of stuff Chamakh is better suited to….

  155. I am in good company!

  156. I agree Supercod. Actually, i was watching Saturdays and we were putting in quite a few crosses. Thats what Chamakh thrives on. He holds up the ball very well but as you said he needs to play up front and center. He holds up the ball very well, can find a nice pass or has the ability to turn on his defender, leaving them flat footed and he usually gets fouled.

    I cannot forget how he played for us when he first arrived. He was the type of player we really needed as far as getting after the ball. He gave us some muscle.

  157. Limpar, found it!

    “The stadium can be expanded and will, it is only a matter of time. This was a pre-required specification of the design to allow it to be future-proof. It was originally designed to be an 80,000 seater stadium with a retractable roof, but because of Islington council objection and time to build as well as cost, it is now at 60,000 capacity. Let us be honest, it is a good jump in size from 38,000 as Highbury was.

    The area around the pitch can be utilised for seating if needed and would provide up to 5,000 more seats. For new stadium regulations, this area is required to be free of seating however. This is a good thing as stadiums that will be selected for the 2018 World Cup have to adhere to this rule, eg Wembly as another stadium.

    Regarding expanding the stadium, there are a few simple ways this can be done. Emirates Stadium is a four-tiered design, simply adding an extra tier(just like the overlapping tier between the first and second tier) will add the capacity required or simply to keep adding steps to the original stadium as it is, ie increase the steps from the back row.

    There are approximately 1,000 seats in the last row of the stadium. If you take an extra 10 steps upwards, then that would be 10,000 seats. Another factor to look at is the height of the stadium. Rules in building it were it had to be of a maximum height, which it is below now anyway as the stadium was built below ground level.

    Getting back to the maximum capacity, it would take 40 steps to add 40,000 seats (This is a conservative estimate) and bring the total capacity to over 100,000 if necessary.
    Regarding the height, if each step up is about 12 inches, this means it would be forty feet more than it is now. This does not seem excessive.

    The roof will need to be removed and a new roof replacing it, but as you can see it is not a nightmare architectually speaking.

    I can go on and on, with statistics and figures etc.

    The bottom line is that once the underground, overground and road infrastructure is improved in future then we can see it happening.”

  158. Good point Supercod. Jenks’ crosses would indeed suit Marouane.
    Shame we might not see them together for a minute.
    I hope Chamakh shines at the ACN

    Will both LeCoq & Frimp remain or is one of them off on loan?
    I think LeCoq’s a few steps ahead of Frimp but Frimp’s quite the enforcer after Song.

  159. Who said that Finsbury?

    (He asks of the new Stadium guru).

  160. G69 @ 5:14

    Unfortunately we will never have a chance to prove or disprove your contention at least with villa in an arsenal shirt. Sigh.

  161. Agreed Paul – does sound silly but there may be some truth to it nonetheless. I recall an interview with an Arsenal player some years ago describing how there 2 types of footballer those who enjoy playing but have other interests and and those who live for it and are pretty much unable to think about anything else. Henry was one player who fell into the 2nd category.

    Perhaps Messi is a very extreme form of the latter.

    You are right of course he plays every game because he is so important but there may also be pressure on the manager to play him every game as they are aware of the consequences to his mentality and therefore his game.

    Massive supposition on my part – it could just by Guilleme is talking cock but it did come across as though it was well known that this is ‘how Messi is’.

  162. Don’t forget the winning finsbury!! we need to be winning everything to get 100,000 in.

  163. Gains wow – I didn’t know you’d watched him play, my mistake, that definitely enough for me to qualify you as an expert opinion. 😉

  164. I’m no expert!

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/dna/606/F16588061?thread=7381772&show=50
    (I found a use for 606!)

    The comment highlighted earlier has been the most straightforward explanations I have found of all the variables that could’ve affected decisions on capacity for the initial design. The restrictions on stadium size due to local station & transport infrastructure were discussed for years before the project when ahead. The stadium was delivered as a fairly basic shell and there’s been a programme of incremental improvements to the ground since so I’m confident that the variable options for increasing capacity outlined above would also have been considered.

  165. Duke

    Sorry, mustn’t forget all those peeople who’ve tearing up their season tickets*. My bad.

    *For reasons other then induced poverty.

  166. G69:

    You tend to be rather dogmatic in the way you present your view points for the last 3 yrs that I have followed the blog. Why don’t you start a log book and keep a running tally of all your prognostications and see how many turn out to be correct. Would be an interesting study.

  167. First, I don’t think Chamakh is too bad. Of course he is lacking confidence a bit but who isn’t under the shadow of RVP? Chamakh is strong, is tall, and knows how to play for his team-mates. I believe his goals will come.

    Second, I DO believe in Park’s ability. He plays very, very good for his national side so he could not be a bad player. You will see. The great thing about players from Asian, like Park and Ryo, is that they always give you their best, or even 110%, in every game.

    Third, I can imagine what we will do with Podolski. We will call him, and tell him: “Listen, Lukas, you and I both know that RVP is on fire right now but we still need another superstar striker to cover for him, so we need you. Yes, that’s right, that means you will sit on the bench until something bad happens to him, which we wish will not happen, or you can push him onto the bench and replace him, which is not likely. Come on, what do you mean you are not interested? We HAVE the money. We CAN play 40m for you. What do you mean you don’t care?”

    And even if we buy Podolski, what will happen? I can imagine some wise guys of us will scream: “AW, you are a FOOL! How the hell can you leave a striker like Lukas on the bench? We have had to pay 40m for him, for God sake! Just let him play, will you?” And because they are the wise guys, how could AW not listen to them, right? So he changes the formation (back) to 4-4-2 to fill in both RVP and Podolski. One or two games later, those same wise guys will discover a great issue: “Hey, wait a minute, how the heck can a club like Arsenal ONLY have 2 (superstar) strikers? We are playing 4-4-2, and we ONLY have 2 strikers! Oh no, WE ARE DOOM! What if one (or worse, both) of them get injured? Come on, let’s go and buy two other strikers, just in case!”

    But, hey, there always is a chance that we would lose our WHOLE TEAM to a plane crash or something like that. I mean that happened before to the poor Man U, right? So why don’t we go and buy another WHOLE TEAM, just in case?

  168. tbh I don’t know if I’d like to see the capacity increased.

    The back row is a fair distance already. And then if you’re sat on the front low, it’s almost too low.
    My favourite view levels are from a few rows above the first, or from the first row of the upper tier.
    Club level doesn’t count, though the views from there are very good. It’s just that it’s, well, it can be a little boring.

  169. Excellent stuff. Thanks, Finsbury. I had all but convinced myself it had been a dream. What a wonderful thing to be! Future-Proof!

    And it’s Arseenal
    Arseenal FC!!
    We’re by far the most sensible and forward-thinking teaaaaaam
    The world has ever seen

    God bless, Finsbury.

  170. Interesting point. Those are the best views I agree, but sometimes it’s just good to be shoved in right under the tier – it sounds great in there – or right pitchside where the view isn’t great but it’s a different experience and a very cool one too. You could have a cheaper price band with more people coming for the seats right up in the gods and also – more people = more atmosphere (at least it should) so you get more of that bang for your buck too. Don’t tell me you don’t want to be wheeled into a 100,000 seater thunder cauldron on your 90th birthday, Finsbury, because I’ll know you’re lying.

  171. Too simplistic Damien Luu (..”Lu-Lu-Lu-Lukas Podo…”)
    Podolski slots right in with RvP
    Either in LM, support striker or striker.
    It’s AA & Ramsey that have to worry about their positions.
    OR
    straight striker with AA & TR7…a super-potent 2nd choice attack

    fix up!

  172. Gains @ 4:41 – Cheers for the reply. Unfotunately all you have suceeded in is proving my point really. All I have stated is common sense. His stats are easy to find, and he hasn’t played as much as others, as, well, others are front of him. There are no outlandish claims there and no extensive knowledge of the player is needed to come up with what I said really.

  173. Damien luu:

    The reason a lot of people like Podolski is his ability to play well in any of the front 3 positions.

  174. Shouldn’t we be requesting that Gervinho stays with us for as long as the Toures are allowed to delay departure to the ACN?

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/2011/dec/13/yaya-toure-manchester-city-africa-nations

  175. Gains – “I can’t really see Villa playing outside of Spain as he’s a diver and wouldn’t have a good time in England because refs aren’t as soft as they are in Spain.

    Yeah that diving Ronaldo chap really flunked here as well. Oh.

  176. @fins Know what you mean about the bottom rows – the very front row is actually beneath pitch level – makes for an interesting viewing experience.

  177. From today’s Mediawatch – what a twat, I sincerely hope he never comes back to Arsenal

    ‘Over the last day or so reports have surfaced that Arsenal striker Nicklas Bendtner, currently on loan at Sunderland, was involved in a bizarre incident in a pizzeria in Copenhagen.

    ‘After Bendtner’s credit card was refused by the pizza joint, the Danish hitman was forced to beg both the store and other diners for some free munch.

    ‘According to Danish newspaper Ekstrabladet, Bendtner rolled out the infamous phrase “Don’t you know who I am? I can buy the whole pizzeria.”

    ‘But the pizza joint stood firm and refused the cocky Arsenal striker who was described by a fellow customer as “f****** arrogant. Bendtner acted as if he owned the place. All the people just stood and looked at each other and shook their heads over the way he behaved.”

    ‘Ekstrabladet wrapped up the story by confirming that Bendtner did eventually get his pizza, thanks to a couple of females who took pity on the striker.’

    And if you happen to speak Danish, here’s a video of said incident.

    http://www.101greatgoals.com/gvideos/arsenal-sunderland-striker-nicklas-bendtner-begs-for-free-pizza/

  178. yogi versitility is indeed the key

    wenger has been reluctant to use the 442 even though it is the formation that you would think chamakh would thrive under.. arshavin also..we have the players to compliment eachother to make a 442 work whoever we play but wenger wont really use it and i think the reason is because he has that many central midfielders the 433 works better for us..

    ‘if someone is relying on van Persie’s legendary injury problems to get a place in the team, that just smacks of a lack of ambition and self-belief. Do you want that sort of player at the club’ – isnt this just describing chamakh??

    our best option is indeed a versitile striker who can play all across the front three..it takes the problem of being backup out of the question it immediately makes him a squad player and can be asked not only to fill in for robin but to provide competition to gerv and theo as well..and if hes good enough he could become a key player..competition is what we need not backups..

    patos perfect but its unlikely even if milan sell we will be able to beat off city and chelsea…benzemas good but hes not the answer and hes just getting settled at real anyway….podolski fits this description but is he actually good enough?? i think the media have us linked to the wrong german but thats not to say i would be against podolksi signing if thats the player wenger chooses, cos at the minute anyone would be better than chamakh.. and with gerv away too they would be able to play with robin..which chamakh cant….
    and with park seemingly to be behind chamakh in the order it just seems abit of a dodgy situation if we dont go for anyone at all…wenger may be true to his word and park may get games in the second half of the season but that could only mean when chamakhs away…which doesnt really say much about parks ability..a backup for the dodgy backup?? wtf?? might as well use one of the kids….i think if wenger trusted him he would have used him more with chamakh being off colour but he hasnt, so its difficult to assess what we brought him here for..

  179. just read the post about the stadium expansion..
    a little birdy told me at the time we was building the emirates that it was designed to be 80k
    but ive never read anything to back it up it was all hearsay..

    nice one finsbury…

  180. this aint a dig at theo,

    but its unfair to compare pato to theo..

    theos a very good player but is still developing..patos an excellent player and is still developing..

    the only skillset that theo wins hands down over pato is pace..but who isnt theo faster than?? and at the same time pato aint no slouch

    pato plays anywhere in the front three..hes played as a wing forward and a lead striker and hes still averages around one in two being utilised in both positions..

    hes fast not theo fast but gervinho fas at least… can dribble, can finish left foot, right foot and head, strong and tricky enough to hold the ball, loves the one twos in and arounf the box and driving at the box from half way and shooting from range..

    id love to say theo is at the same level but hes not and to compare them both is unfair on theo cos weve never ever seen him play as a lead striker, even though he wants to play there wenger wont use him and its got alot to do with the fact hes not that great at holding the ball up..he’s a pace in space player he feeds of the front man hes not a front man..not in a 433….whereas patos the package..

    its like comparing gibbs with Tv..it would be unfair cos gibbs cant play CB yet tv can play both…

    if your going to compare pato with anyone it would be robin and then you could say pato wouldnt make robins position… but pato would be able to play around robin in the same team and take his postion when needed and let theo and gerv play around him which is essentially what we are wanting….

  181. Just hear the most bizarre and ridiculous thing listening to the 606 podcast from Saturday (I know, bad move!) and Robbie Savage was the most reasonable of the bunch (Mark Chapman and Jason Roberts) on their North London first 11.

    All of them are crazy in saying that more Spuds get in but here is the joke:

    All preferred Kyle Walker to Sagna at RB and Assou Ekotto at LB. Parker was ahead of Song!!! Ledley King/Dawson ahead of Koscielny! I’ll give them Modric over Arteta (narrowly) and concede that while we love Chezzer, your average football fan/pundit would go with the experience of Friedel. They all love Bale, but is he producing more than Gervinho, really? Walcott is obviously superior to Lennon. Let’s give them Van der Vaart; at least they didn’t have the temerity to prefer any striker to RvP, though in a 442 they had no VdV but did have Adebayor.

    Madness!

  182. as i did two weeks ago on this site, what about
    ANTONIO DI NATALE

    what would be the pros. and cons. relating to his signing?
    he is deadly in front of goal..

    UP THE GUNS!!!!!

  183. JonJon – Nice balanced summary mate. Hopefully you will have seen at least 87% of Pato’s games or unfortunately Gain will discount your opinion. I think it is pretty acurate personally though.

  184. ive watched a fair few…

  185. JJ

    Good stuff I’m sold. We could probably afford a couple Pato’s or perhaps a pato and a Di Natale.

  186. Nope we can just about afford a new patio – but that’s the limit.

  187. bill we couldnt even afford one pato..

    hes not coming…even if milan were daft enough to sell it wouldnt be in our range it would take oil money..i think milan aleady have him on 100k+ a week..and unless his contracts up the fee wouldnt be cheap either..

    reus is much more realistic..

  188. Jonny:

    Since your a chef may be you could whip us up a Podolski appetizer with a main course of Pato and a vertonghen for dessert.

  189. Yogi

    Thanks

    I think we signed park out of a mixture of desperation as we didnt get our number 1,2,3,4,5 or 6th choice targets and also a bit of a gamble as he was cheap.

  190. JJ

    Milan are skint, they can ask for silly money but £20m would do it (which isnt chicken feed!) This we cant afford pato is a bit rubbish IMO mate.

    But you do like to be dramatic! 🙂

  191. As much as I love Theo he is not on the same level as Pato, unless you are going on pure pace alone. As JJ say even comparing the two makes no sense as they are completely different players.
    As for Chamakh, I really see some thing there as far as attacking threat goes but In my humble opinion he is not being played to his strengths. Its just so hard to think back to his first few months at the club when he was banging them in and winning us penalties. If he can get himself back to that level then we will be laughing. Is buying another striker in Jan a good idea? I think so. Forget sentiment, if we have too many good players the cream will rise and we can offload the leftovers, who ever they may be. This is about the team and not individual favorites.

  192. Why are people comparing Theo to pato?

    Weird as fuck.

    2 completely different players

  193. I think we signed Park because his name came out of the tombola .
    He just dropped lucky.
    We just had a punt.
    Someone had seen him on Champ Man.
    Some clown thought that being able to score at International level somehow made him a player.
    We signed him by mistake?

  194. dex if we could get pato for 20mil it will be one of the best pieces of business weve done since selling nasri for 25 with one year left.. 🙂
    lets go get him..in fact you can come to milan with me and help me carry him back..

  195. 1x Podolski Consomme
    1x Pato Dauphinoise
    1x Vertonghen Bavois

    Righto just off to the kitchen – I may be some time.

  196. JJ; 🙂

    George

    My money is on the office sweep stake.

  197. Really hope Gibbs return is as imminent as YW suggests. The defenders will need freshening up over the festive log jam.

  198. Milan are not the power house they used to be, perhaps we could nick Pato. Wouldnt that just be a big pick up for the club, players and fans

  199. I know I will get hammered (by some) for saying this and generally I wouldnt be of this parfticular opinion. BUT, I really do feel that a top quality signing like a Pato (or whoever) would be massive for the club, players and fans and signing a striker of that callibre will show a few players we do mean business and I think that is also hugely important.

  200. wenger was going for numbers..he admitted that and so did grimandi i think

    there was nobody else available at the time cos we wasted the entire window pissing about over cesc and nasri..

    park was on the move..grimandi caught wind, rang wenger and it was done..but only as cover until new year which gave wenger the the time to get his target sorted for jan 😉

    its either that or he was bought on the back of a successful asian tour…but i cant see wenger sanctioning that..unless he didnt..and thats why he wont use him..

    either way..he wasnt bought for first team…

  201. I hope he proves us all wrong and bangs in a load of goals over crimbo!

  202. What Theo has over many players is that he shows up in big matches. You can bet your life on it, he will tear someone up on the right and will assist or score.

  203. We need a proven premiership player who is not injured and who scores regularly and for some unknown reason their club want shut of him.
    That will be nobody then.Ever.

  204. Dex – Gain’s response to the suggestion of signing Pato yesterday was what started it

    “Theo Walcott is quicker and way better overall than Pato. I’d much rather move Theo to the middle and turn the Ox into a proper RW than buy someone as limited as him”

  205. Ah,the old “need to show intent” argument.

  206. JJ: “id love to say theo is at the same level but hes not and to compare them both is unfair on theo cos weve never ever seen him play as a lead striker, even though he wants to play there wenger wont use him and its got alot to do with the fact hes not that great at holding the ball up..he’s a pace in space player he feeds of the front man hes not a front man..not in a 433….whereas patos the package..”

    Complete package? Call me when Messi says that Pato scares him more than Theo Walcott does. Theo Walcott instills fear in his opponents. Pato? Not so much.

    I would love for Pato to come to the premier league. We’ll see if he’s as good in England, against younger, fitter, more physical defences, than he is playing against the static catennacio he faces every week in Italy.

  207. George

    Face it, you have no argument, hence your fatuous comment mate.

    Song, Theo and Robin will all have one year left on their contract next summer, signing top quality helps to convince players to stay I’m afraid, the likes of park might float your boat, but I cant see you leading the line for us next season once RvP has decided to do a nasri.

    Smarts dont it.

    We have money now, I have had no qualms with the way we have run things in the interim period. That excuse is gone and Wenger, for all his brilliance almost fucked himself up in the summer with his procrastinating. Signing a top quality player works o all levels, saying its impossible to sign one is laughable.

  208. Dex @ 8.41 – couldn’t agree more. It would really lay down a marker of intent to sign a big name from a position of strength. For fans and players alike. Furthermore it might prove decisive in holding onto RVP.

  209. Pato is quality, Theo is quality. No problem with seeing them in the same team, so that’ll be Theo in Italy next summer then!

  210. Complete package? Call me when Messi says that Pato scares him more than Theo Walcott does. Theo Walcott instills fear in his opponents. Pato? Not so much.

    So would you care to share who told you Pato does not instill fear in them please Gains, or you just making shit up again?

    LOL

  211. Jonny

    Thats my main point really. We have players coming to the ends of their contracts who have seen players leave and have heard that we are a feeder club, dont sign top class etc etc.

  212. Gains ,I usually don’t get involved in actual football talk 🙂 but if Barca were playing Milan he might just say that.(he is usually very nice about opponents)
    If Usain Bolt was playing for us I suspect he would frighten the bejesus out of teams as well.Does not mean you would want him waiting to receive the ball in the box though!

  213. If I am not mistaken, Walcott has done well when he played striker?
    I believe the main reason Walcott plays on the wing is because he is our most effective player there. He causes trouble and then we have RVP to get on the end of his through balls. This is whats best for the team right now. I could be wrong though.

  214. Limestone

    That podcast you listened to sounds fucking hilarious, but also scary that those clueless fuckwits are being paid (by me in part!) to give their ‘expert’ views!!

    Kyle Walker over Sagna??? Are they fucking kidding? Oh I get it, its the english thang again. Never mind the fact Sagna’s the best RB in the league and the most onsistent.

  215. Dexter .
    I thought ” marker of intent “was bad enough but”feeder club”is worse.
    Next you will remind us that we only got 17 points from 17 games.
    What has gotten in to you man?

  216. Wenger himself confirmed as recently as a couple of weeks ago that he plans to use Walcott as a striker eventually. It’s where he sees Theo’s future. And to be honest, he has come a long way. His finishing is rather excellent, especially when he cuts inside, and he has an eye for the pass. I still hope that in a year or two we will see Bergkamp/Henry Mark 2 with RVP and Theo.

  217. PaulN

    For me, Theo is a wide forward, he plays right side but is given licence to come inside and score, as well as create. He is an outlet and gives defences huge headaches. I have had to defend him for at least 3 years man. I think he is fan-feckin-tastic.

    I really dont think Theo needs to be played centrally, he can do damage from where he is playing now.

  218. i take it you dont rate pato then gains..??

    fair enough..if every player thats faced milan has personally phoned you and told you patos not scary then il just have to take your word for it..cos from what ive seen and from what his stats suggest id say its sour grapes on their part cos he makes mugs of them quite regular…

    but if pato dont trouble defenders i wont bother ask you what theyve all told you about the shivers and sweats they get when they face chamakh and the player whos a backup for chamakh…

    dont take it personally gains i love theo to bits and i think hes a good player for us and he stays for years to come..but just to make it clear..in wanting pato that doesnt mean as a replacement for theo….so its unfair to compare..

    why cant we play pato, rvp, theo.. or gervino, pato, theo…??

    thats fucking scary…im just thinking out loud in no way does me wanting pato have a negative effect on what i think of theo..they can all play together..

  219. Dex:

    Had we brought in Mert, Arteta and Santos 5 -6 weeks earlier it might have cost us a few extra million but I think its very realistic to believe we might have been playing for first place tomorrow. We never even would have missed that couple of million extra in our bank account.

  220. George

    Dear chap, how obtuse are you tonight? I never said those words, you need to have another go.

    But you could post on an automoated loop, so maybe you are out and your PC has malfunctioned?

  221. And also Dexter.I have not yet Googled “fatuous”
    But I will,and it better be a fucking compliment.

  222. I would argue that Pato and Theo are two very similar players. More similar, in fact, than most head to head comparisons most people make. They’re both pacy and love to run at opponents. That one plays out wide in a 4-3-3 and the other one plays centrally in the same system doesn’t really matter.

    Pato the best piece of business for £20m, JJ? Now I’ve heard everything. Pato plays in a slower, less physically demanding league. If he came here he’d be overwhelmed by the close marking and the refereeing, for starters. Nevermind that he’s as light as a feather. Come on guys. When are you going to stop giving in to such blatant hype?

  223. Sorry should read, playing for first place this Sunday.

    Thats what I get for hurrying.

  224. Hahaha! George, it is I promise!

    Look, I am only suggesting we sign a striker we have heard of man! And in the process it might help the team and help convince a few players to sign up.

    You dont have to take it as a slight mate!

    BTW; I’m not entirely sure what fatuous means?

  225. I think it is quite safe to say that Walcott puts a fear in teams that not many other players can. If he beats you, you are toast. Not only can he burn you but his touch/control, passing moves and passing/crossing have all improved.

    With all that, his upside is great!

  226. Well, if we are talking £20m, then Torres is available for that!

    Gains

    Talking of Torres, I was laughing my head off when Liverpool paid £28m for Torres, he had never scored more than 12(ish) league goals for Atletico and was never prolific. However, he proved that he can be and Pato, well, I think he is a better player than the Spaniard (which obviously means he will bomb then! Haha)

  227. So basically by your logic Gains any player that hasnt played in the prem is no good to us, boy Im glad Wenger feels differently to you.

  228. Gains

    You can hardly say its falling for blatant hype when he aint getting a sniff at AC man! The lad is quality, he might not want to come here, though and it may never happen.

    We can always sign Teves, he’s done OK over here.

  229. PaulN

    Was that one for me man? £20m? If so, its what the chavs are asking for Torres apparantly.

  230. Andy: “JonJon – Nice balanced summary mate. Hopefully you will have seen at least 87% of Pato’s games or unfortunately Gain will discount your opinion. I think it is pretty acurate personally though.”

    Jon Jon has clearly watched Pato more than you so his opinion holds more weight than yours, as far as I’m concerned.

    Gunnerjones, I haven’t heard anything from Messi concerning Pato. When I do, I’ll surely let you know.

    Oh, and good luck nicking Pato. He’s dating Berlusconi’s daughter so getting him will be more complicated than just going over and plucking him from Milan, dimwit.

  231. gains i think youve got pato mixed up with someone else mate honestly..

    light as a feather?? the dudes 6 foot and is twice the size of chamakh.

    italy is well known for it defending..they play a defensive tactical game over there which is why its so slow and patos pace, strength and trickery is what gets him passed them…

    he’d fit into the PL nicely i reckon..but we can go round in circles on this all night cos you obviously dont like him..or the player your getting him mixed up with..

  232. Dimwit! Your class coming out as usual eh !

  233. @JJ
    Pato is one inch taller than Walcott. Just for the size comparison thing.

  234. Was gonna add the fact that he is 6ft but JJ beat me to it.

  235. Stop it .
    Why cant you accept we will not be taking a £20 million punt on anyone.
    And taking a player who looks good in Italy is a huge Punt.Especially as he cant hold down a regular start for Milan.
    “fatuous” I will “fatuous” you when we meet.I have never been so insulted in all my pip.How very dare you?

  236. its probably why gervinho has been so shit..

    being from a less physical more slower league and all that…

    dont know why wenger got him he aint got a chance over here…

    santos as well coming from turkey..shit league..one of the shittest…what you doing wenger he’ll never make it in PL..

  237. Stop being so fucking simplistic, Gunnerjones. Part of the reason why I know he wouldn’t do well in the EPL is because I’ve watched him play for a very long time. And since I know his attributes pretty well I can tell you that he wouldn’t cut it in a league where the marking is tougher.

  238. Walcot 176 inches, Pato 180 My bad he is not 6 foot but not far off.

  239. hes 5’11

    its closer to 6 foot than what theo is..

    whats theo..5’8 5’9…with two pair of sox and his boots on??

  240. JJ, all I’m saying is that Pato looks better than he does because he plays in that league. That’s different than saying that Santos would never make it in the EPL because he played in Turkey. In fact, Pato did quite poorly in the Copa America whilst Andre Santos did very well. Believe me, I don’t discriminate on the basis of where a player comes from. Look at my admiration for Shiqiri. Dude, plays in the Swiss league, but you can tell that he’s going to be a star based on how he plays.

  241. Just can’t help insulting people! GJ – I’d take it as badge of honour.

    Also since when is having seen someone play ‘more than someone else’ a reliable barometer of the value of their opinion when assessing a player?? Far too simplistic for my liking.

  242. A good comparison is Gervinho, who is about the same size as Pato (one cm between them). But, at least according to ESPN Soccernet, Gervinho weighs in at about 80kg while Pato is a lean 71kg. Which I think backs up Gainsborough more or less when he is saying that Pato is a rather light player. For comparison, Theo is listed as weighing 68kg. Make of that what you will.

  243. George

    We have taken punts on Koscienly, Vermealen and they were defenders mate. Going for a young striker and looking at spending £20m is not even top end these days buddy.

    According to whoscored.com, Thjeo is 170cms and Pato 179cms. Oh and Pato has only been played centrally.

    The fact he doesnt get games is more down to how the new manager wants to do things than anything to do with his quality too.

    But, I aint hung up on him, it can be any world class striker that we sign as far as I am concenred!

  244. Evil

    Think we need to look at other sites for more reliable info man.

  245. Santos didn’t come at well over £20 million JJ.
    Robinho,he proves your case JJ! Oh wait………………………Sorry,that was fatuous.(I think,just let me check)

  246. Gains – Are you a scout? Sorry mate I didn’t realise. I bow to your superior football knowledge.

  247. I dont care if you have watched him play every game since he got out of diapers, you are clearly very bias and opinionated and your opinion therefore means shit to me. You are the minority in this one, no need to get so worked up, you will give yourself a hernia man.

  248. @Dexter
    170cm for Walcott is wrong. The official PL website put’s him at 176cm. http://www.premierleague.com/en-gb/players/profile.overview.html/theo-walcott
    So all in all it’s 3 or 4 cm between Theo and Pato. And 3kg.

  249. “The fact he doesnt get games is more down to how the new manager wants to do things than anything to do with his quality too.”
    Really? Source?

  250. JJ, then I gather you haven’t seen him play for Brazil and Milan as much as you lead on, huh? The guy doesn’t like it up him one bit. Whenever he’s played against a team that marks him closely he disappears. Look at how he played in the Copa America and you’ll see what I’m talking about.

    Gunnerjones, hahahahahahahaha!!!!!

  251. I seriously doubt we will see either one of Pato or Podolski heading this way in any case.

  252. Skysports has em at Pato; 181cm & Theo 175cm!

  253. Ha ha G69, as ever, you’re so predictably obtuse. What’s funny is that you don’t realise how pompously silly you sound.

    I posted a correction to my initial comments on Pato’s scoring stats, but trust you to jump on the mistake with relish, as if it makes a difference to your orginal argument that Theo is WAY better than the Brazilian.
    I should also say that I’m finding your subsequent attempt to defend that point equally amusing, by all means keep it up.

  254. No Dex, I am not feeling 20 mil for Pato. But hey, he maybe worth it. Why isnt he getting any play at present?

  255. He disapears when marked closely? I am confused now; you explained to us he only looks good in the Italian lge as it is so defensive. If this was anybody else talking I would think they don’t really kbnow what they are on about……but as it is you Gains, I will take your word for it. Still confused though.

  256. and for all the talk of theo playing centrally…..

    “At the moment, I do nothing in January,” he said. “I have a big squad, but if you knock at my door and say ‘I have a fantastic player for you’, I will not turn it down.

    “If we have no injuries, we should get away with it because we have Oxlade-Chamberlain, who can play there, Park, Arshavin and Van Persie. So we still have offensive players, but we could be a bit short if we have an injury.”

    no mention of theo..wenger even rates Oxo higher than theo in a central role..so dont expect theo to move centrally anytime soon…theos best position is where he is cos thats the role that suits his skillset…

    theo aint a false nine..doesnt have the attributes and never will have and as long as wenger is in charge its unlikely we’ll ever see theo lead the line for arsenal by himself..

    not unless we have 100 injuries and we turn into an all out defensive team that hoofs it over the top all the time…but that aint the wenger way is it…

  257. You must have missed something gains, the Arsenal dont like it up them either, he would be a perfect fit. Lets get him!

  258. Gunner jones.
    Some minority.
    Have we done a poll that I have missed. That’s buggered it.

  259. Darn -we just tumbled out of the FA youth cup. Boo.

  260. Pedantic; look it up in the dictionary and you will see a photo of George, man boobs n all!

    George, the dude on ESPN was waxing lyrical about it last time I wartched AC play. I was pretty shocked, seeing as how the manager would rather play Ibrahimovic!

    Oh well, I’d be quite happy with Jovetic anyway, he’s loads better than Pato, Teves, Torres, Podolski, George Weah, Pele.

  261. Jonny, that’s a pretty stupid question. I’ve watched Pato since he was seventeen or thereabouts. At that age one can see a player’s instincts and the way he communicates with his teammates a lot more clearly.

    I’m not a scout, Andy, but I know way more about this particular player than you do.

  262. Well George it seems the thing to do here is exaggerate ones point to make one sound or seem more intelligent, or just make ourselves feel like we are right in our own little minds. Sorry there was no poll, you missed nothing. Just seems like gains is the only one who considers Pato a shit player and knows for a fact he will never be any good in the Prem. I guess I should have worded it differently. My bad!

  263. PaulN

    That was the price for Torres man, I was saying to JJ we could get Pato for that, but that was just me saying, no evidence. And I’ve said why he isnt playing as much lately.

  264. The whole conversation is so absurd – they should never have been compared in the first place and we are, I think, mostly in agreement that we are unlikely to sign Pato anyway.

    😉

  265. I wasn’t jumping on your mistake, Henristic. Your comment wasn’t the first time someone has made the same claim about Pato to me. I’m sorry you were butthurt, though. And calling me obtuse when you’re the one who exaggerated without proof to back it up is pretty rich.

  266. And claiming to know more than others too now. Well he knows who the boy is dating ! That more than I could say.

  267. Andy, he also plays for Brazil and in the CL. Wait, you haven’t seen much of him, nevermind.

  268. This could easily be settled with a fisticuffs

  269. Way to show your class, Gunnerjones. Jonny, your boyfriend is under attack again.

  270. JJ, suppose I say there are some good posters on ACLF. We have G69, JJ, GA, Dex and George. Does that mean that the other posters are not good?

    Come on bro! How many times has Wenger said that Theo will move to the middle eventually? Again, we need Walcott on the wings at this point.

  271. This whole argument is fatous!! 🙂

    We need a striker, a good one too, having preferences who we’d like to see is nothing to get all bent out of shape about. I like getting a bit giddy about possible new signings. It doesnt mean we think we know more than the manager, or that we think our current players are shit eother. It just means that a new signing would be something to get a bit giddy over and its part of the game.

  272. I believe that is you showing your class again mate. Every one here knows Im a cunt!

  273. Yeh Dex, I saw you responded to George. Its possible that they have better options?

  274. Paul.I don’t accept that Dex is a good poster.He is fatuous and obtusely pedantic.An all round bad egg if you ask me.
    Also,I don’t understand your post.Is Pato good or not?

  275. thats one player i do agree with you on..
    shakiri is a talent..and from what ive heard hes got a release clause less than 10mil so it could be on..but only when arshavin leaves maybe..

    if pato dont like it up him though he’d fit in with us more than you think 😉

    he cant be bullied he played lead striker before they signed ibra and got 15 and then switched back to wing when they signed ibra and scored another 15 it dont matter where he plays he scores…

    paul hes not played much at the minute cos he picked up a knock but even though he was pivotal in the new managers first year title win there has been rumours there was a fall out cos allegri signed cassano from sampdoria in the summer even though they didnt need him… he was a favorite of allegris and he wanted him and its patos place hes taken and seeing as though cassano is 29 and abit shit pato aint been too happy..its like us dropping theo for park just cos the manager likes him more and expecting theo to accept it…
    and there now after tevez so and theres been rumours of them wanting kaka back as well so pato could find himself why down the pecking order cos allegris on a power trip and not cos of his contribution to what theyve done..cos without him they wouldnt have won fuck all last year.,.

  276. Good call on Robinho, George. Like Pato, Neymar and Ganso, Robinho is but one in a huge wave of overhyped Brazilians that have appeared recently.

    Oh, and fuck Pato. If we should sign anyone it would have to be Hulk. A player that was excluded from Brazil’s Copa America team in favor of the Duck eventhough he’s twice the player.

  277. see what youve started dex 😉

  278. it’s wengers plan, he’s focusing on vp now while he’s in form , everyone gets used to it then from jan- BANG!!!! he pulls out all his guns and blitzs everyone…(to be honest i dont know)

    xmas wishlist- buy torres+podolski+vertoghen, play torres upfront, podolski on the left, robin on the right (in my dreams he plays robin in the advanced midfeilder position), some games play vertonghen+song+arteta in midfeild, some games he plays with 3 CB- vermalen, vertoghen and kosicelny, 5midfeild- 2 wingers + midfeild trio, and 2 strikers. best of all worlds

  279. Sweeper is Muppet or nuts!

  280. id rather have park than torres..
    his mojos gone he lost it in liverpool although it was probably stolen and hes been even worse at chelsea..
    he’d be shit here as well… if it was for 5mil then yeah id say take a punt and see if the merseyside police can recover his shooting boots at a car boot sale and return them c/o arsena wenger but for 20mil nah they can keep him..

  281. He was pivotal for Milan last season, JJ? He was in and out of the treatment room wasn’t he?

  282. PG, why should we be accepting before the window that we will not be taking a punt on a striker? We have the cash, we are in a big struggle for 4th, AW has moved from outright denying buying to saying it is possible we’ll get a striker, we need more firepower and AW has a history of buying attackers in January. I think we should be expecting that we’ll be reinforcing given all these conditions. If we don’t bring in anyone it will be because our targets weren’t available or we refused to pay too much more than we wanted. I doubt it will be because we aren’t avidly looking. In which case, what harm talking about it and the options among Arsenal supporters?

  283. … and if all else fails, resort to anal themed insults. You really couldn’t be more predictable Gains.

    And btw, there is a difference between getting stats wrong and exageration. I’m guilty of the former, and you the latter. I suppose part of being obtuse is not noticing such things…

  284. I belive Pato played 25 games last season. Make of that what you will.

  285. haha george i just seen the robinho comment..
    to be fiar to robinho hes a good player but reminds me abit of le sulk when he was younger..his ego was writing cheques that only the massive clubs could cash but he was a talent and i was there the day that him and sturridge tore us apart at city..

    wasnt pretty..he fucking mugged us off..

  286. Again with the insults. Oooh they cut.

    If you really think it is ‘stupid’ to suggest that there is much more to the evaluation of a player than the time someone has spent watching them then doesn’t say much for you. What of that, most important of factors, the person doing the evaluating?

    Given your supercilious air of authority, the lack of respect you show to opinions which differ to your own and your frequent snide comments, petty insults and aggressive posturing you give little reason to think you’d be any good at evaluating.

    Face it, you made a daft comment comparing two players who should never have been drawn in binary opposition to start with – different players, different positions, different leagues. Now you’re busy arguing left, right and centre trying to defend your position. Zzzzzzz.

    Gunnerjones when are we next going on a date?

    😀

  287. Maybe those theiving scousers nicked Toress’ mojo?

  288. he got the odd knock gains as alot of players do but he made about 30 apps and hit 15 goals…

  289. I liked what I saw of him George, but I couldnt care less, I would rather back our boys and not put them down all the time like your bredrin Dex.

    hee hee!

    I think Wenger would Torres get his mojo back, JJ. I rather like Torres. Something isnt clicking but he is a talented player.

  290. Frankly I think we are looking at creative attacking midfielders, strikers/attackers for the front 3 and possibly a utility player in midfield and defense who can play left back. I don’t know if we’ll get any of these players but it isn’t absurd to think we could get some or all of these, especially those in attack.

    The club has sacrificed a great deal to be in this financial position and it wasn’t our choice to sell two of our attacking, creative players last summer while only bringing in Gervinho at that level of quality and experience. The players we brought in have been really good for our team spirit, defensive solidity, and mentality. That doesn’t mean that the club was done or had completed its business as this is a massive transition with a huge turnover of players and a real re-orientation toward a post-Cesc side. The rebuilding continues and the signs are that we will be using the transfer window to enhance our position for this season and the future. AW suggested that our strong financial position might allow us to do business that others won’t and take some opportunities.

    I am looking forward to seeing what materializes. It should be an interesting January window for us.

  291. just checked

    he played 33 16 goals 4 asssists…

    fuck me i know my stuff if i could be bothered to look up the stats more id be fucking dangerous…:)

  292. LG, no harm talking.I am all in favour of that.
    But I just think Pato is a non starter.Is all I am saying.
    I hope we do buy a striker as it goes.I just dont have clue which one.
    It is easier to rule them out than rule them in .

  293. Haha PaulN!

  294. George

    You padant! So, you do want a striker then??? Lord love a duck, you are fatuous! Hahahaha! 🙂

  295. Jonny enough with the big words.
    There is only so many browsers a man can open.

  296. Pato is a red herring. The main issue is a striker/attacker. People are going to have a variety of views but while it is easier to rule out than in, it should be clear that we are actually looking for someone in that category.

    “Stop it .
    Why cant you accept we will not be taking a £20 million punt on anyone.”

  297. Paul,
    We have more options in wide areas than in the centre, so I don’t really agree that we NEED theo playing wide right now. I’m not really sure how long term Wenger’s plans for playing theo in the centre is, but there’s certainly been a number of chances for him to do so before now and it hasn’t really happened yet, much to the seeming fustration of the player himself.

    If we don’t sign a striker this January, I personally would like to see Theo get some games in that position, but something tells me it won’t happen.

  298. Dexter .I never indicated anywhere that I did not want us to buy.

    Stop putting things in my mouth.(I might get to liking it)

  299. Myself, I have had doubts about Podolski’s club record. But perhaps he would be a good option.

    In the meantime, I’d love to see Theo, Arshavin, the Ox, Ramsey scoring some more goals. I enjoyed our game v. Wigan because others were chipping in. I’d also like to see some more set piece headers from Verminator and Mertesacker.

  300. limestone
    thats a good comment thats why i think wenger wants gotze as they ‘main’ buy cos that lad can play as a 11, 10, 7 and 8 (in old numbers/modern game speak) and hes top class now..

    he ticks all the boxes hes like a cesc that can dribble and play anwhere so we wouldnt be driving thru the middle all the time we’d keep our versititly and directness..

    still need a striker to go with it though..but it wouldnt be pato..
    probably looking at 15mil max..depending on who gets sold to add to the coffers and to make the room

    marco reus and mario gotze and id be over the fucking moon..

  301. Well, if Gains is arguing left, right and centre, then perhaps he could be what Wenger is looking to sign in January… He likes a bit of versatility, just ask JJ.

    Jonny

    Do you fancy writing one of my MA essays man? 🙂

  302. Limestone, Is it “clear” because thats what you want Limestone?

  303. Henristic, I’d go one better and say I’d hope to see Theo playing centrally during the Xmas week matches if AW is serious about his prospects there. That way he can start to show what he can do there early enough to allow us still to act in the window if this isn’t a viable option during the ACN period or even later this season. If not, then I don’t put much credence in AW citing Theo as a striker for why he doesn’t need to buy in the area, which he has sometimes done.

  304. George Hahaha! Saucy! 🙂

  305. LG”punt” being the operative word.
    Pato is a punt.
    I just think if we spend £20 million + it will be on a more robust and proven striker.
    But I still don’t see us spending big on an out and out striker.
    And I meant stop it expecting, not discussing.

  306. JJ @ 10.35
    That is exactly as I see it.
    Which means you are brilliant BTW

  307. George

    So, you just have an issues with others suggesting actual names instead of just saying “ooh you know what? I wouldnt mind us signing a new striker, but I best not say any names just in case I upset anyone, or people laugh at me lack of knowledge.” 🙂

  308. George my apologies dear fellow I must try not to be so sesquipedalian. [Look it up ;-)]

  309. JJ, now Pato is down in the pecking order because Allegri is on a power trip? Right. Perhaps Allegri doesn’t play him because he doesn’t see how he fits in the system and would rather play someone else. In fact, Allegri played both Ibra and Pato at the same time against Bologna and if it weren’t for a generous ref, they would’ve been clobbered by a team that sits close to the bottom of the table. What do you make of that?

    Henristic, some of my mates are under the impression that Pato has scored way more than he has. You’re not the first one to make this mistake and I’m not going after you the way you think. I pointed that out in order to expose how much hype the Brazilian carries along with him. You can stop acting like a little girl now.

    Jonny, I don’t think I’m more qualified to judge Pato because I’ve been watching him longer than most people arguing with me about him. However, having watched him play in different teams throughout his career I’ve been able to watch how he does against different opposition and circumstances. Therefore, I’d say that I’m a bit more informed about the player than someone like Andy, who admitted he hasn’t seen much of him, or Henristic, who is so caught up with the hype that he thinks he has scored more than he has.

    If you want to ascribe a supercilious sense of authority on to me while giving me what amounts to a sermon, then feel free. I’m sure the irony is not lost on other people interested in the conversation.

  310. Henristic, I dont think we have to play Theo Wide, I would say that he is our best option at present. I too would like to see Walcott given a go up front.

  311. Dexter.Yes that is exactly it.

  312. It is clear that we are looking (not a certainty that we will be buying) for anyone who pays attention to the patterns of AW’s speech, his history, the circumstances of the club and all the other manifold signs and suggestions. AW almost never ever actually says he is looking for a specific position. When he says it is possible if there is a good player available, it means he is looking closely and pursuing the matter. But between looking and sealing the deal, as we know, there is a great distance.

    I’d add that Chamakh has been making it clear that he is contemplating moving on and the fact that Park has only a year and a half left.

    What this means is that it shouldn’t be a problem to discuss the matter in good faith on the blog, because it isn’t unreasonable to think we could be buying a striker or forward this window. So I really don’t see the purpose of all the negative comments against the possibilities that are thrown up because they are pretty generic and dismissive of any and all ideas and some posters seldom if ever offer their own ideas or suggestions. One thing I will give Gains is at least he does offer his own suggestions for players that others can respond to and doesn’t just shoot down other ideas or represent the suggestion as an attack on a current player. I find that the latter approach doesn’t advance discussion at all.

  313. Dex sure thing, what’s it on?

    Where’s Irish good to with some light hearted bonhomie.

  314. Every purchase is a punt relatively speaking. There aren’t any guarantees on anyone and I have faith that AW has good reasons for his purchases even if he isn’t infallible.

  315. Anyway Paato will be busy with other more pressing matters now his teacher(Socrates) has passed over.

  316. Gains @: 10.44 wow a civilised response – did someone else write that? 😉

    And shucks, what can I say, you bring out the best in me.

  317. I wouldnt mind a striker but somehow a speed, tricky, creative center mid is what I would like to see. Again, that could be The OX or Wilshere, though not as fast, could fit the bill also.

    What we need is more goals from the mids, more so than another striker.

    and I am right…alright Dex!

  318. Not really LG.Park type money is only a flutter.£20+ is a huge great gambley punt

  319. Anyway at this time of year, we really ought to be buying a Panto! 😀

    Geprge That last post wasnt a dig at you mate, just in case you thought it was.

    J

  320. Ah. Pato is not Greek,now I get it.

  321. Anyway at this time of year, we really ought to be buying a Panto! 😀

    George That last post wasnt a dig at you mate, just in case you thought it was.

    J

  322. hahaha
    yeah i totally agree…
    we need to sign up gains..

  323. JJ, there seem to be a number of really good players in areas we are probably looking to strengthen. As I said to you yesterday, Reus is an exciting player who is doing the business. Gotze we know about–he looked like he would fit in with us when we met Dortmund. I just hope the club can swing the deals and give us the boost we could use to power our second half forward. I still cherish the hope of challenging for this league if we can beat ManCity and trim their lead over us. To do so, we have to keep momentum up and that includes the morale of the squad and securing the future by showing those whose contracts are up that our team has a brilliant future and knows how to rebuild after losing some top class talent. I don’t see any reason why we can’t have as talented a team in attack as the past but with more experience, solidarity, defensive strength, and cohesive spirit as we have been displaying. Right now what we lack is some more invention and goal scoring threats. Who doesn’t want a bit more fantasy to the side in addition to the dreamy RvP?

  324. PaulN

    Ha, I too would like to see more goals from midfield, the fact Arteta likes a shot from distance is a good start, Ramsey has goals in him, while Song is the playmaker extraordinaire! Gervinho can polish up his shooting while away on international duty too. And that will really compliment our new striker won’t it!!

  325. JJ, are those apps all for the serie A or do they include Coppa Italia and other tournaments? Considering that he was out for six weeks about a month into the campaign and another few weeks later on, I highly doubt those are all apps for the Serie A.

  326. PG, all that means is that the club does its homework and judges the potential worth the outlay. AW said he would pay 40million for the right player. Don’t be scared. This window would be an excellent time to make a big move or two if the right players are available.

  327. Thank you, Lime. I also agree with you with regards to having more fantasy in the team. I think that is something we lack when Van Persie’s not in the side and we need to get our mids more involved. And as much as I appreciate Benayoun, I just don’t think he can cut it. If we can get a player to rotate with Rosicky, I feel there will be enough creativity in the side for us to compensate for the loss of Gervinho.

  328. We must never, ever, give up on the league. OK it is unseemly to talk about it when 12 points adrift after less than 10 games. And if we lose to ManCity we will have to keep our powder dry; even an away draw would only be a hopeful sign of strength but not a warrant to talk about challenging. However, a win against City would give us the right to join the conversation openly.

    However, going into the window I believe we should remain that ambitious and I said the same over a month ago in late October or early November. We have only conceded the Carling Cup and that was in the service of guaranteeing top spot in the CL group, which ManCity didn’t manage. We have three trophies before us. Let’s reinforce this squad and go for it! Don’t we think we can win our next knockout tie? I think we might have a good chance in the next round, especially if we avoid Barca and RM. Anyone else and I like our chances–certainly shouldn’t fear them.

  329. gains thats just my take on that situation mate..my opinion on something is just as right as yours…but i do think allegri is buying for the sake of buying and we see it over here with alot of good players..lets take sturridge..was looking a good little player at city , then city go buy 99 forwards and sturridge ends up having to take the hard route and is now a first team regualr at chelsea..some managers are just wierd..what was wrong wit city keeping sturridge?? they didnt care cos they wanted to buy and i think patos got the same problem but to a larger extent cos hes already a first teamer..he fits the system fine hes proved hes good enough and hes scores goals but allegri wants to buy everyone so whats he to do…..

    and i dont make anything of that game mate weve had a good number of run ins ourselves with shit teams over recent years..

    i still remember the cup runs of last year..one or two teams making it hard is understandable in the magic of the cup but we were making every crappy team we played against along the way look good..

    and the games v stoke and blackburn live long in the memory but that dont mean rvp and theo are shit..

  330. At the risk of PonyBoy calling me a boring cunt, might I suggest Andrei provides fantasy.And I believe reports of his demise have been somewhat exaggerated.

  331. Only another 7 weeks of this transfer talk. Think I will hibernate. YAWN

  332. Andrey does indeed offer us some fantasy George and he aint done yet.

    JJ & Gains; I was under the impression Panto was not being played because of being cast assunder by the manager, a fallout, more than anything else.

    George’s post about Arshavin is a nice comparison. I think he is a brilliant player, yet isnt getting a sniff. Does that mean he is shit?

    Plus Pato at 22 well, you’d think he is 5 years off his peak easily no? A move may be exactly what he needs.

    But I dont care, I am sooo hoping we go for Ba now.

  333. JJ ,Your opinion is not just as right as his.It is either better or worse on an individual case by case.For it to be equal you would both have to be the same distance from the truth.
    But I know what you are saying 🙂

    LG .Fine words

  334. apps for milan in all comps domestic and europe

    seria A apps were 25 and 14 goals 4 assists..

    not bad for a 21 year old crock..all that shows is even after injury he doesnt need 100 games to get back into the stride..hes that good as soon as he takes to the pitch hes firing..

    he’d probably get the same here with rotation and all with our current first choice 3 and if the return was the same we’d be laughing…would we not??..the facts dont lie gains…

    personal opinion however clouds judgement… 😉

  335. I agree, PG, that he does. Do I have to testify again to my support of AA, whom I would like to see play more and in ways to bring out his quality? He’ll get his chance perhaps when Gervinho goes. Maybe I need to post that Barca goal vid again to remind us of what that little dynamo can do! Dream goal, indeed!

  336. Oh Dupsff, whats wrong with a bit of fantasy football man?

  337. When we got Toral AW said he’d lost loads of promising teenagers to other clubs, and it was just one of those things – well there goes Alban Bunjaku, who looked a half decent prospect. Wonder if he has the head to make it in football though.

  338. dex
    yeah its my wrongful distance from the truth in this case 🙂 that theres been abit of a tiff..

    and i dunno how ba has slipped under arsenes radar but in anycase hes off to play in this thingy thats being held in africa so…

  339. OOU

    Whats that about Bunjaku? He looked immense everytime I have seen him.

  340. I am only trying to help JJ.Not need to be flip.

  341. PG, I remember you liked that call to arms last time too!

    You ask for it, you got it! Our bits of fantasy, RvP and Arshavin!!!!!

  342. Oh fuck! Bunjaku has left??? Thats fucked up man, he looked awesome. That could come back to bite us in the arse, hope not

  343. lol i know george i wasnt taking the piss

    what you said made me laugh..i was trying to apply your theory into my post..

  344. I bet he’s been tapped up, he will sign for the chavs next week.

  345. well i will have to take all your judgments on Pato as i dont watch Italian football due to it being as boring as shit. but by going on what all you lot say i’m none the bloody wiser wether he will be a good signing or not.

  346. Seems possible, Dex. I guess something might have been going on – he’s been eligible for a pro contract for months and nothing had been signed. Usually they sign dead on their 17th birthday. Bould also criticised him after a few of those U18 games on Arsenal Player, which is unusual – implying he wasn’t a team player etc. Still, he did look really good.

  347. Well Bouldy and the coaches know him far better than me, I just thought he was going to be a massive player. Then again, I thought of Bentley, Lupoli, JET, Merida, Stokes, etc.

  348. DukeG

    I have changed my times that many times, I cant remember whether I was one of those saying we should buy him, or I think he’s crap?

  349. JJ I know you were not .
    Love the banter on here .It can be different class some nights.

  350. who do you want dukey..
    or aint you fussed..??

  351. Not to mention Quincy, Dex. I was sure about him. It’s impossible to know what goes on – clearly there’s more to making it that having the talent. It’s not like any of the cast offs under Wenger have become superstars. At best they tend to reach mid-table level.

  352. the banters wicked when it kicks in..like being down the pub..

  353. erm…i’d take Hunterlaar or hang on who have the papers been saying……Tevez…nah Hunterlaar is a natural goal scorer isnt he.

  354. Yeah, I have never understood those who’ve given the boss stick for letting players go. There havent been any that have gone on to prove him wrong.

    Of course, they are good enough to have decent careers, just not good enough for us.

    There must be loads of things they need to go along with the talent; dedication, hard work, humility, all the things sadly lacking in George 🙂

    Some of my old school mates had the talent they just couldnt be arse and would rather get high and mess around!

  355. I’m going to be gutted if we dont sign Teves or Torres.

  356. Indeed OOU, look at Jay Simpson – how many people maintained he could do a job at Arsenal even as he was sold. Look at him now.

  357. listen we do this everytime and we all know Wenger will sign someone no cunt mentioned.

  358. oh duke your so last year..

    i actually wouldnt mind tevez if we could afford him..
    bit of a prick but a great player..
    and you just know he’d turn it on just to piss mancini and fergie off..

  359. JJ yeah forgot…Podolski it is then. better keep in with the times!!

  360. Ahh, he’d be an awesome signing JJ, but lets not re-piss George, Gains and PaulN off!!

    M<y Man City supporting mate was saying how amazing he'd be for us. He is a wieird fucker, every 2 years he throws a hissy fit, almost as if his agent/owner/lover wanted him to move on so he could get another fat pay day???

  361. No Dukey!! Its Torres now!

  362. Dexter ,I think you underestimate me.
    I am told ,and I quote “George ,you are a proper smart arse”
    At least some people appreciate me.You would do well to accept this as the truth.Before I humble you with my wit and repartee.

  363. i liked simpson..
    but im not sorry we let him go..

    yeah duke like park…

  364. Dont give me a tongue lashing now George, you big bully you.

    And what dumbass cretin called you a smart arse??? 🙂

    Nite

  365. Seems like ages since Simpson left – can’t believe it was only 2010! According to wikipedia he’s back at Millwall at the moment. Tough break.

  366. simpson was being touted as the next wrighty by some..pity
    we aint had much joy with strikers really over the last few years..
    either bought or developed..

    ive got hopes for afobe though..

  367. JJ, I don’t rate Sturridge either. He’s a quick and versatile lefty, but beyond that I don’t see him making an impact for Chelsea. Villas-Boas playing him in front of Malouda is a huge mistake, in my opinion.

    Milan doesn’t buy for the sake of buying, Allegri or no Allegri. That’s why they still have Seedorf, Nesta, Abbiatti, Ambrosini and Yepes in their ranks. So don’t put Milan in the same category as City, Real Madrid and Chelsea because they don’t buy players just to warehouse other players in the team. Especially, not one who cost them as much as Pato did. Something they do, however, is get rid of players who don’t fit the system. They got rid of Ronaldinho before last season, even though he was playing at a very good level, and they won the championship. That was Allegri, by the way. Perhaps the reason why Pato may be overlooked is the same reason why Adenayor was overlooked at City despite scoring 30 in a season for us. He just didn’t fit the system the manager wanted to implement and he had to go.

  368. Some comments from Milan supporters regarding Pato:

    “Pato certamente vada venduto…..ma subitisssssimo”

    Pato needs to be sold quuuuuuick.

    “Pato mi dispiace e credo che deve essere venduto. Ai poco caratere e motivazione”

    I don’t like Pato and believe he should be sold. He lacks character and motivation.

    “I’m beginning to sour on Pato. If Real Madrid came in with an offer, I say let him leave.”

    “This game shows how horrible Pato is. We need Tevez”

    Maybe I’m not crazy for suggesting that Pato is not too great?

  369. Geo- I saw Thierry play in person in mid-October. Unfortunately he was red carded 20 some minutes into the match, so it was hard to say whether he still has it. But he had a nice assist vs LA in the MLS playoffs. It’s hard to assess him when he’s playing with and against MLS level players.

  370. Benik Afobe’s return is due in January, I think he’s more than a capable back up.

  371. “Only another 7 weeks of this transfer talk. Think I will hibernate. YAWN”

    Dupps reading the comments my first thought was “here we go again” just when the armchair punditry of last summer was becoming a distant memory.DAMN!

  372. Ba seems a decent shout. Did he not a medical at Stoke though before joining Newcastle? I am sure I saw an interview wih Pulis saying that Ba’s knee was “liking a ticking timebomb”. We really don’t need another injury prone player.

  373. In all liklihood I can’t see us buying another player anyway. Arsene has never been one for bringing too many faces in during a season, so given the splurge of players in the summer I can’t see him adding further still.

  374. Well people can speculate,and will no doubt.
    But from what I have seen ,we should take our Euros over to Dortmund and buy that young fellow with the animal sounding name.At worst we can chant about feeding the Goat.

  375. I dont back wenger to sign any other striker there are players who can feel the role before chamack and jevinho come back from nation cup we have the like of pak chambalin benayoun riomiyachy and theo walcot can even play as atacker

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