Fifth Is The New Third & Transfer Giggles

I wonder about Arsenal fans sometimes. I do genuinely. Frequently it’s with exasperation, wondering why they believe so much of what is written in desperate desire to sell advertising; why it is so unrelentingly consumed without question. This morning’s Arsenal conundrum is more about who votes for the club’s player of the year? I mean I will take it as read that Robin van Persie is in first place. Second presumably will be Laurent Koscielny. Third? Well third has come in fifth.

Mikel Arteta‘s contribution to my mind, was worthy of a higher placing. I am guessing that Tomas Rosicky will be third or fourth whilst I presume that Alex Song is the other. I would not necessarily disagree with the former being rated higher than the Spaniard although it seems more influenced by the Czech international’s form since Christmas than anything over the course of the nine months of the campaign.

Arteta was probably the best purchase of Summer 2011, bringing a steadying and calming influence to the Arsenal midfield following the departure of Fabregas and Nasri to their new homes. The statistics so often beloved of us do not tell the whole story with six goals and three assists not reflecting the impact he made. That the Basque cannot force his way into the national team squad says more of the riches that they have than anything of his performances.

You have to always be upgrading. Otherwise you’re f*cked.
– Billy Beane

Transfer window tattle went into overdrive yesterday. Yann M’vila is also one who is deemed to be an improvement on the current Arsenal squad but he is taking too long for today’s NOW society. The press are bored by his posturing so are looking to help Arsène find a new defensive midfielder. Having scoured the world game and taken into consideration contractual status, Nigel de Jong is this morning’s bruiser in the making.

Eden Hazard took his sizeable abilities and even bigger ego to Stamford Bridge after taking pontification over his future to a whole new level. Bizarre as his behaviour has been, he would have strengthened the Arsenal squad and it would be foolish to deny that. It might not be a position that is high on anyone’s list of required improvements but that is a whole different matter.

Bizarre is a word that seems apt for the story carried this morning by Daily Heil raconteur extraordinaire, Sami Mokbel. You have to have cojones to run a story that Chelsea are interested in Theo Walcott when they have just committed to spending £30m on a player who will occupy a wide attacking position. That’s before you remember that they spent £20m on Juan Mata last summer. Not quite as funny as the story linking us with Fernando Llorente, a wind-up that was picked up from Twitter and published by a, ahem, Sportsmail Reporter.

Back to Walcott. The story seems to have come from his agent, Walcott’s team having declined to discuss the situation with the club during the season. Repositioning their client into the part of the ‘victim’ is pointless; Walcott’s contract had flown under a lot of people’s radar as attention focussed on Robin van Persie.

The England international divides opinions, his inconsistent displays deemed to be a failure to fulfil his talent. My own view is that he is not as inconsistent as is sometimes stated. Wayward delivery is often cited by media commentators as his biggest failing but it is ignoring the obvious. He is a wide player whose primary role is an attacker; thirteen goals in 2010-11 reduced to eleven last season but by the same token, he created thirteen as opposed to the previous nine: a net two-goal ‘gain’. He is still essentially contributing a goal every other game.

Walcott’s problem is two-fold. Firstly, Arsenal paid a big fee for the teenager and with that comes a lot of hype and perhaps unrealistic expectations. That is not of Walcott’s doing and certainly his development was hampered by injuries. Last season was the first time that Walcott came anywhere near being an ever-present. The second is of his own making; he is continually setting himself targets (a good thing) and telling us about them (a bad idea, a very hugely, immensely, bad idea). Once those and the notion of playing as a central striker, are in the public domain they are another cross that he has to bear rather than finding row Z with.

For all of that, I would prefer Walcott to stay in the same way I want van Persie to stay (his mum says so). There will be a perception problem if one leaves with both being fodder for ‘Gunners In Crisis‘ headlines and we know the angst that will arise from that. Yes, I am being polite when I use the word ‘angst’. As it is, I expect both will stay with posturing filling the back pages in the lull between the end of the season and beginning of Euro2012.

’til Tomorrow.

Posted on May 29, 2012, in Arsenal, Football, Premier League, Soccer, Transfer Gossip and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 218 Comments.

  1. pedantic george

    about time

  2. !ssttttt……

  3. no PG…split..

  4. pedantic george

    I mean about time time the post was up.
    I don’t give a flying about being one before second

  5. pedantic george

    Are you doubting my word young Yogi.?

  6. And once you have read today’s post, you can have a look at a barney is Sao Paolo fifty three years ago today:

    http://afchistory.wordpress.com/2012/05/29/arsenal-wont-run-away-from-their-brazilian-tour-on-this-day-29th-may-1949/

  7. Desole PG for my misinterpretation… Morning YW as per norm an excellent post.

  8. ‘young’ isn’t a word that is used around me unless (a) you are talking of my offspring or (b) it is accompanied by “I remember when I was young…”

  9. pedantic george

    Yes but doesn’t it give you a lift when someone calls you young man?
    I always dish it you when looking to get on someones good side.

  10. Is PG doing his Harry Enfield impression?.

    Another fine post YW, I have no idea how you do it everyday but keep it up. (ooh err young man)

  11. pedantic george

    Perhaps I should have a Weasel rather than a Meerkat as my avitar ,Dups?

  12. No George I picture you more as a ferret down the trousers man. 🙂

  13. arsenalandrew

    Good post, reflecting all that we so love about Silly Season …

    Theo is yet another for whom those criticising him so often miss the point when they blather on about his ‘inconsistency’.

    Regardless of the goals he scores or misses, the number of assists or non-assists, he is consistently regarded by opponents as potentially the most dangerous – or one of the most dangerous – players on the pitch.

    Virtually without exception, this is reflected in the way those opponents set themselves up for when he’s playing. Just by being on the pitch he brings us advantage, albeit a somewhat unquantifiable one.

    Unlike the goals and assists record.

    I’m no expert on football but if even I can grasp this why do some others seem to find it so hard?

    ***

    Eddie Hazzard seems to have found the best club for him. Certainly given the lack of class he’s displayed in recently announcing the clubs he MIGHT go to just before signing for the Chavs would make this seem so, at any rate.

  14. bananas

  15. I agree Arteta was probably our buy of the season. Does the vote really matter?

    I’m glad the Hazard transfer saga’s ended so quickly. The swiftness of his decision says something about the boy who joined “them”.

    Setting targets in the public domain is essentially not the end of the world. As long as Theo re-signs w/o a frivolous clause saying he must play CF in no less than a 3rd of his games, I’m ok with the young man who did improve his game last season.

    Theo & RvP should both take a page from Cesc and listen to their mums. I hope Mrs Walcott’s as loyal to the r&w as Mrs van Persie.

    ww & ww…mission 2013: gunners for the double

  16. AA

    Everyone knew Hazzard was going to Chelsea or Citeh. Arsene &.Slur Alex would never allow the kind of shit coming from EH.

  17. richard morgan

    I agree walcott has provided goals and assists, however his performances during games do dip he needs to find ways of being more consistent over the ninety minutes. I agree that this is not all his fault certain teams do double up on him and a lot of the balls he receives with back to goal and then has to turn and run, however, having realised this is happening it is his responsibility to work on ways of overcoming this and develop new skills to make it harder for opposition to shackle him. The other criticism of him about the quality of his delivery is shaky too. Often for us a delivery out wide into the box has to be pin point as it is usually just rvp in there surrounded by 4 or 5 defenders. so the delivery from out wide looks poor when he does not get on the end of it.
    My question is if the figure bandied about for his new contract is £80k a week is correct is he worth that? Personally I don’t and this is where we have failed in the past paying money out on new contracts that are not proportionate to the quality of the players performances. I say give him a ten to fifteen percent rise and stipulate that if in two years his performances over the season have been consistently high then renegotiate a contract in the 80k a week region. I would also add another winger of quality to give him competition so he has to give 100 per cent in every game so he does not fall in the trap of believing no matter how he performs he will get in the team.

  18. Chelsea are certainly building. In successive seasons they have signed one of the most sought after young players in European football.

  19. Agree Dups.

    More interestingly for me is – is Roman now de facto Chel$ki manager seeing as the current caretaker appears just to be locking up?

    And if so, how long will he give himself? What kind of pay-off has he lined himself up with should he decide to get the sack?

    Can’t wait for the obligatory post-match interviews …

  20. I’m not going to repeat what Stewart Robson just said about Walcott on the radio. Needless to say I’ve never wanted to deliver a swift knee to someone’s knackers moreso than I do right now.

  21. AA

    He could do them leaning out of his yacht’s porthole.

  22. I have a longer memory than some. Arteta was a discard from Everton, Kosielney was too frail to succeed. Both are now in the top 5 of our Club.
    Gervinho and Walcott are too easily knocked off the ball. Ramsey has lost confidence.
    Watch them next season before reaching a decision.

  23. andy “Chelsea are certainly building. In successive seasons they have signed one of the most sought after young players in European football.”

    They are building a great looking team that looks set up to play football, but all that will be for nothing if they bring in the wrong manager.

  24. Is Walcott worth a huge contract? Hmm, the stats say yes, but the eyes say no. A strange one.

    I hope we keep him. Firstly, as frustrating as he can be, he is producing the goods. Secondly he is well versed in our style of play and made improvements to his game last year.

    If we let him go, then we need to bring in a replacement. More transition.

  25. Mugabe Junior II is going to play for the Chavs? If Gaddafi junior can train with Di Natale why not I suppose. Italy is an interesting model for football but it could never happen here.

  26. Upper Street Gooner

    Nicky

    I think some fans missed the point.

    Arsenal conceded 41 goals in 2009-10. Arsene viewed that as to many. He brought in an inexperienced lightweight cb with huge upside. He was exactly what was expected in his first season very inconsistent with great highs (barcelona) and terrible lows (wba). The defence conceded more. This year individually he has looked very good although his mastering of the offside trap needs allot of improvement. Until our defence becomes remotely competent in terms of goals conceded judgement is still going to be out.

    Arteta

    was viewed as a replacement for Cesc and thats why some fans were disgruntled. As it was the injury to Wilshere allowed Arteta to become a pivotal player in the side. We still lack cesc replacement as rosicky despite a very impressive final 15 games doesent socre or assist enough to start in that position. We attack with to many players as it is and part of that is not having a chief creator.

    Markus

    Completely agree. They are excelelnt signings but surely a manager wants to be able to bring in some of his own additions. If i’m Marin i’m questioning my move already

  27. The Arse in The Gamb

    Kos had a great season, but I really struggle to position any player after vP in first place. There were many who should get the honour and for many reasons, but the season could not have been the same without any of them: a solid Song, a resurgent Rosicky, an artful Arteta or a kryptonitic Koscielny and others like the Ox, Santos, Sagna and Vermaelen whose individual critical contributions deserve equally befitting alliteration.
    I still remember too, how Gervinho brought back some flair and joy to the club in the early season after the departure of the ‘gold’ hungry French wide player. He quickly showed us that the only real loss to the team last summer was the young Spaniard….it meant a lot then in those bleak days and it still does…… even with his dip in form in the middle of the season.
    So having argued that, i get the feeling that 2nd place should be awarded for consistency, which probably leads us to Arteta, we have not looked the same without him and if we can crack consistency they have all shown that this team can beat anyone when they perform.

  28. nicky…’enuff said.

    I agree Markus. Looks really good on paper but with so many PL-untested (Lukaku, Marin, Hazard, Hulk, Van der Wiel?) bungle management and it’ll be a looong season.

  29. Upper Street Gooner

    Goonerandy

    The issue is getting round the home players rule. Having top level quality english trained players presents massive advantages.

    Says allot about him that the negotiations are taking this long though. Obviously its preferred to keep theo but as an advocate of moneyball arsene must be having admiring glances at Hoillet and seeing the potential return on selling Theo

  30. arsenalandrew

    Markus – was that Stuart Robson?! I caught the recording on TalkSpite – along the lines of “Theo’s not a footballer, merely an athlete who wears football boots” but didn’t clearly hear who spoke the words; it sounded like they said it was Stuart Robson but I couldn’t believe anyone connected with the club could possibly say such a thing.

    On a par with Hansen’s “Theo doesn’t have a footballing brain” from just a couple of years or so back …

    Suggests to me either Robson is on the way out or Theo is. That they could both remain in post would seem highly unlikely.

    I know who I’m rooting for but I can’t help but wonder if RvP’s media blackout is in any way connected to negotiations possibly going on with Theo and presumably Alex S?

    Hmmm …

  31. Well that made me laugh, dups! (10:24)

    Another of my favourite topics is allowing players…especially ones who are doing their growing up in public…allowing them to make mistakes. They have got to take risks, some of which will inevitably make them look foolish, but if they don’t try them they won’t improve. And in Theo’s case, he is mos def growing up in public. Players (particularly wingers) need thick skins and an arrogance to boot. By definition, they are close to the fans and also by definition, as they are close to the touchline, they have less room to manoevre, Love him or hate him, Cronaldo had the balls to try stupid things, didn’t seem to care too much if he made a right tit of himself and his confidence grew massively. Theo is a different character and a different footballer to Ronaldo but his skin is thickening and his confidence is growing and once or twice last season he produced some audacious (un-Theo-like) skills, like that Cruyff turn near the by-line against I can’t remember who. He will only get better. And is worth the £10,000 a week pay-rise to take him to that £80K a week. (sorry Yogi, but I do know what they all earn!)

  32. Upper Street Gooner

    Chels spree is quickly showing why it was so important for them and not bayern to win the league.

    Chels would have spent big win or lose (yogi is this not first yeay where FFP counts in some sort of way???)

    The fact that they won means that spurs cant spend whcih can only be good news for us. Things were far to close for comfort last year

  33. USG – Yeah, decent point.

  34. I can feel full rant mode being engaged with Koscielny coming in fourth in this sodding poll. I bet Jack Wilshere’s in the top 3.

  35. USG and goonerandy

    It’s sad that what Spurs do has become something that Arsenal fans worry about.

  36. RvP-Song-Szc-Kos-Art…probably

  37. USG

    I have a feeling that it is one of the monitoring years.

  38. I was playing the “fill in 2nd and 3rd place” game before reading the post.

    I agree with Aman … as to the likely result (not the selections!).

  39. Nicky – I agree there were the usual dissenting moan-hards but the sanguine voices over here were very happy with both Kos and Arteta. Few if any predicted they would go on to become the players they have (so quickly) but plenty of people – myself included – thought they were good signings.
    I would have been thrilled if we had signed Arteta a few years earlier – I had hoped we might go for him when the move for Alonso disintegrated.
    My 5 for the season – RVP, Arteta, Kos, Sagna, Song.
    I think Rosicky was as important as anyone and it’s terribly hard to leave him out but, whilst I don’t think his season has been quite as binary and bifurcated as some suggest, it is true he grew into the campaign.

  40. USg, I kinda doubt LeProf’d be comparing Theo to Junior. The Walcott project is not over. Arsene’s still in the lab.

  41. Upper Street Gooner

    lew1234

    Times change unfortunately the yids have been able to close the gap on us significantly in the last 4 years by being extremley well run and us struggling with stadium debt and lsoing players.

    If we make the necasary improvements this summer i see no reason for spurs to be a major threat next year.

    The minimum target for us next year should be 80 points. The yids wont be getting above 80 next year

  42. arsenalandrew

    Jonny – well put; agree.

  43. Ah yes theo walcott, sometimes i ask myself who is the bigger enigma between arshavin and walcott, they both post good numbers in terms of goals and assists but yet am not quite sure what to make of them. When they’re good, they’re good and when they are bad, their game will be woeful and thats the biggest problem, there is no middle ground, no’ wait for it …. Consistency.
    But, i don’t blame walcott for this, two problems hampared his progress in recent seasons
    * Injuries
    * Southampton.
    There is no reason to go into injuries, i put southhampton there because of their academy. As we all know walcott has blistering pace but according to theo himself while at the saints academy the coaches there instructed his teammates to play the ball over the top or behind the defenders for theo to run onto, now this is all well and good in winning matches but the shitheads forgot to work on basic abilities like technique, control e.t.c – This is a similar situation to drogba who missed a year of training as a 15yearold, he started training as a full proffesional at the age of 21 and thats the reason he was a late bloomer.
    This is the same scenario i see walcott having, he needed to work on his technique and such so which can only happen with more games so in hindsight a loan might have been better for him earlier on.

    Nevertheless, i see walcott scoring 15goals a season at least when he turns 25, all he needs to do is train harder and work on his defiences, the number of runs into blind alleys reduced last season so it is safe to say he is improving.

    Stat attack on walcott and lennon coming up, what? been doing a lot of reading.

  44. Spurs need much more attention in terms of signings than we do, I feel.

    That said, should we fail to hold on to our players, this might not hold so true!

    I like the noises coming from both of the important women in RVP’s life today. They want him to stay in London and they feel he owes it to the club to stick by it. If he has any sense he’ll know you should always prioritise the women’s opinions first and foremost!

    Couple that with the noises from his teammates and, on balance, I still think he will stay.

  45. I’m really itching for the pre-season.
    Looking forward to see the following play: Afobe, Aneke, Bartley, Botelho, Campbell, Henderson, Watt and Wellington

  46. Upper Street Gooner

    Aman

    Money is money though. Theo knows full well what he could get at another club and he also knows what type of premium a talented young english player can get.

    One of Arsenals major probelms is that we dont have enough consistent scorers to the point where we love our DM for getting assists even though he neglects his defensive responsibility sometimes altogether.

    We concede an utterly tragic 49 goals this year and let a average milan team bang 4 against us. If you listened to all on here we have a world class keeper, 3 world class cb 2 world class full backs and brilliant DM. If thats the case then there is something seriously with our tactics. Or its just that in terms of attackers we dont have that many who terrify the opposition so in order to create space we basically need to send everyone forward.

    Our other midfielders and attackers scored 40 goals between them in 216 starts over 300 total performances. Podolski will def help but we also need a world class creator who can get even more out of theo, gervinho, and others

  47. Upper Street Gooner

    Jonny

    The difference is they havent got european football to contend with.

    We need a squad fit to compete in 4 comps.

    I would say interms of start 11’s we both need 2 high quality additions after that i think all we need is back up keeper to have an unbelivable squadf for next year. I think they would need 4 or 5 Rosicky, Gibbs, Diaby level of quality players to compete.

    We are so bloody close

  48. Khalifha – I think Theo’s technique and control, or lack thereof, is more likely due to him coming to football later than his contemporaries. It may also be the case that having such outlandish speed allowed him to ‘get away’ with not being quite so skilful.

    Southampton’s academy set-up is rated amongst the best in the country – Oxchops and Bale both came through the academy amongst quite a few other internationals.

    Regardless – he has a great future – I feel we are just scratching the surface of his talents.

  49. USg…stats don’t lie but they don’t tell the whole truth. YW’s mentioned in the past 2 days the 8-2 aberration. Our defence actually improved despite having 4 fullbacks out for so long….

    a world class creator costs quite a bit and there aren’t too many of those around. So why bother when we can WIN with the 4 almost-world class creators we have? TR+Jack+Abou+AA are more than nice enough.
    Podolski + RvP
    Theo+Gerv+Ox+Ryo

    …forget it mate, we will kick ass next season..i’ve been saying it..
    i’m expect a kardashian in 2013
    …a double arse

  50. @USG

    “Jonny
    The difference is they havent got european football to contend with.”

    …Are you assuming Spurs will simply ignore the Europa? If so that’s an assumption without basis. The Europa can be every bit as demanding as the CL – especially with those teams in Russia & Ukraine et al.

    I roughly agree in terms of additions but it is also a question of holding what we have.

    A GK and a midfielder would see me pretty happy in addition to the current squad – especially if JW and Diaby are showing signs that they might be remotely available.

    Of course should we lose any of RVP, Theo or Djourou then that’s all going to change…

  51. Upper Street Gooner

    Aman

    Even if you take away the 8 goal defeat (which you shouldnt) we will have still conceded as many goals as what we did 2 years ago when our manager quite rightly pointed out that that was to many to challenge.

    Losing our attacking fullbacks shouldnt have led to our defence imploding. Sticking 2 quick cbs at on the flanks SHOULDNT lead to the defence struggling. We conceded 7 goals to wigan, west brom and norwich at the end of they

    It really worries me that people just palm these things off again and again. The same right things were said last summer about improvements. Until the manager eradicates the excuses from the squad we wont improve. This starts in pre season. I remember 2 years ago when we had that epci game in Poland and number of fans took it lightly, bollocks i want to see hard nosed pressured defending from the get go next year.

    We will concede less and score more by doign this. We are close but getting that extra 5% betetr will eb the hardest bit

  52. Johnny, on southampton academy, matt letisier(sic), bale and chamberlain have more natural talent than walcott but what theo has over them is speed, the coaches there failed to work on his defienciencies instead allowing him to rely solely on his pace – i believe walcott has so much more to his game, finishing, movement and shot technique. unfortunately he failed to hone other aspects of his game, why else did we see walcott running with the ball and leaving it behind him lol or mis controlling a 10yard pass, earlier in his arsenal career.

  53. The emirates cup always gave us a good idea what to expect in the coming season. Player wise i remember gibbs coming onto the scene in 2007 as a winger, wilshere in 2008 and 2009, frimpong and wilshere in 2010, and afobe in 2011.

    In terms of football, 2009 and 2010 emirates cup was just great to watch but 2011 was terrible, i think we failed to win a match that summer’s tournament, the might red bull and boca juniors held us to draws.

  54. USG
    The match you are refering to is the one against legia warsaw in pre season, we won 6 – 5 haha, it was a sign of things to come *cough* newcastle *cough*

  55. Upper Street Gooner

    Jonny

    Its an assumption based on what they did in it this year and also how it sits with their overall objective which is cl football.

    Spurs dont need the squad that we have.

    We cant afford this. There are quite rightly much higher expectations in our camp. We were clearly not strong enough to challenge on multiple fronts last year

  56. Upper Street Gooner

    Khalifha

    Thats the one. I was dismayed by it and this year i want to see a collective effort from the team in pre season to get better.

    We have used every excuse in the book so far to justify incredibly poor defensive team performances other than personel and tactics.

  57. “I can feel full rant mode being engaged with Koscielny coming in fourth in this sodding poll. I bet Jack Wilshere’s in the top 3.”

    Sadly, I expect it to be AOC up there with an undeserved placing in the top 5. Don’t get me wrong, he had a great start for a first season and shows promise. But he is not in the top 5 of AFC players for 11/12

  58. Eh Passenal – AOC??? – You’re joking right? Not even a remote chance it will be him!

  59. Do you want to bet?

  60. Good read Yogi.

    I’m not going to lose any sleep over this top 5 list. The two standout players this season were RvP and Kos. For me, Rosicky, Arteta, Song, & Szez, in any order deserve recognition.

    I keep hearing this remark about how the vPersie’s love London, but no one mentions Chelsea as an option. (bitting my own tongue)

    Theo, for however long he stays at Arsenal, will field camps of differing opinions.

    I will never forget his falling down amongst a group of Chelsea players, picking himself up, continuing his run, and blasting the ball past Cech! For me the “effort” of the season, along with Song’s maze run against Dortmund to assist RvP, Arteta’s goal v. City, Rosicky’s goal v. Spuds, Vermaelen’s last second winner v. Newcastle, Kos’s header against Milan, oh hell…….there were so many memorable things about the season: good and not so good.

  61. Frankly – Yes! :0)

  62. It’s only a popularity contest after all!

  63. Laziest, pig-ignorant football-journo-bollocks ever.

    Compare what The Arsenal “need” to what Man City “need”.

    No mention of a GK either! Gah!

    😀

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/blog/2012/may/28/premier-league-transfer-targets

  64. Well he has got a lovely smile, Pass. 😉

  65. i think song will be no2. and vermaelen no3

  66. for those intrigued by the top 5 voting……Kos is 4th.

  67. Arsesession

    In your list you forgot Sagna’s goal against the scum

  68. dups……yes, Sagna v. spuds; totally changed momentum for the match and started a great run of form; also the from out of nowhere goal by Santos v. Chelsea; and Henry’s goals!!!

  69. Happy birthday AA23

  70. Boring day at work and all we have to talk about is the move of a diva in to the sweaty palms of a Russian mobster. I thought that was the oldest profession in the world.

  71. Doh!1 Man am I a slow typist.

  72. Nice post Yogi:

    Not sure why you get upset about the fans. I am just not sure what you expect. Are we really any different then any other fans of any club in any sport in any era? Not!!

    Chelsea really trying to rebuild. Hopefully they will misfire. Will be tough enough to get past the Manc clubs

    Did not get a chance to comment over the weekend. Johan Djourou is as good as any 4th choice CB around but like any other squad you hope that your 4th choice does not spend a lot of high leverage time on the pitch. Hopefully he will be with us next season. I have confidence in our Kos and BFG. I love TV5 but somehow he has to get control of himself and remember he is a defender first. Probably too much to ask for by hoping that someone from our coaching staff drop kicked his well paid bum thru a set of rugby goal posts after watching him bomb forward in the last few games. I agree with many of USG’s observations.

    We need to re-sign Theo. Not sure if he is worth $80M but thats the going rate these days and if we can’t ever come close to the going rate then what chance do we have of ever keeping any of our better players? What sort of message does that send to the rest of the squad and the world? We all believe in the vision and the motivation and ambition of our club, but to outside observers who don’t follow and don’t have our love for the club we look like a selling club. That might not seem important but I think it affects our ability to attract and retain top players and probably will affect our ability to get the best commercial contracts etc. Hopefully thats just over reaction.

  73. Apparently Pavel Pogrebnyak is a free transfer this summer.

  74. I vote for Nasri to finish second. His leaving was a big plus for tean unity and morale.

  75. arsenalandrew

    Theo’s good, Bill, but $80M?!

    Or has the dollar just collapsed when I wasn’t looking?

  76. red kangaroo

    If Kos is 4th and Arteta 5th I cannot imagine whom my fellow fans have voted in 2nd and 3rd. Maybe Theo and Song for all their assists? Sagna, who spent half the season with broken legs, but scored a season-saving goal against the spuds? Rosicky who was great in the final third? Ox, because he is a breath of fresh air? Marton Fulop? I’m intrigued.

  77. Andrew:

    Is Theo worth $80M. Realistically probably not. He is a good player and we have invested a huge amount of time and mental energy into him. I certainly don’t want to lose him. We have all been hoping the the next generation are going to be different since they were Arsenal fans and grew up in the Arsenal tradition and and they would believe in the same things we want to believe. Theo was an Arsenal fan growing up and really wanted to play for us. He is supposed to be part of the next “golden generation”. What would losing him do for squad morale? If he goes what hope do we have that the Wilshere’s and Ox etc will stay? Perhaps thats overly melodramatic but we can’t keep rebuilding forever, can we?

  78. Upper Street Gooner

    Bill

    Very true, there is something seriously wrong if we are losing the likes of Theo and Song this summer. We cant continue hemorrhage key young performers and just pass them off as money grabbers.

    Our salary structure is causing huge problems for us and the only way we seem to keep players these days is by offering them long term contracts straight after or during recovery for bad injuries.

    One thing you didn’t get right is where Theo child hood loyalties lied, he was a massive Liverpool fan. Wilshere was massive West Ham fan growing up

  79. Andrew:

    Sorry I meant 80K/week wages for Theo, not $80M. I thought someone said that the reports were that he was asking for $80K/week. Brain not completely engaged after a 3 day weekend here in the US. Theo is good but I would hope we would sell if someone offered us $80M for him.

  80. I hadn’t realised Luke Freeman had such a good season for Stevenage 32 appearances seven goals, eight assists. Good on him.

  81. USG:

    I thought Theo grew up as an Arsenal fan. Thanks for correcting me.

  82. Gah, Walcott!! When I started seeing his photos in celebrity rags with young hot things at his side I started to think the chance of him working hard to improve his game decreased significantly.
    My take on him is that as a child he was a geeky kid lacking self-confidence, blessed with enough speed to make others drool at his potential. Now that he is earning the big bucks he is basking in his new found fame and fortune. Now the hottest babes want to be with him. He wants to enjoy this attention and fame. Hope he doesn’t turn in to another Cashley.

  83. Philmar, please tell me you’re kidding.

  84. billturner90

    Markus, he’s got it right….. Create 20 goals + Big Bucks = Hot babes. The matts is simple really

  85. Philmar

    The only person I’ve ever seen him photographed with at these bashes is his fiancee. Not that I see many of them, mind.

  86. billturner90

    If i’m not mistaken Theo is dating a lovely looking blonde…http://bit.ly/LC7wdW

  87. I can’t imagine Arsenal sans Theo. Somehow, he is part of whatever it is we are or will become. He’s ambitious, much better than his detractors imagine, improving, but not yet as consistent as his ambition demands. He is one or two degrees short of maturity; I mean the footballing type: positioning, fast decision-making, concentration, taking responsibility. He will succeed if he works hard. Arsenal!

  88. Yup Billt, as Yogi alluded, that’s his long-term girlfriend Melanie. To whom he recently got engaged.

    Philmar you are talking ass.

  89. And has been since they were both nippers. Admittedly I don’t read celebrity mags, but if I was to hold up any of our players as model young proffesionals it would be Theo. Which is why I thought Philmar was having a laugh.

  90. Agreed ZimP.

  91. billturner90

    Zim I concur. It definitely seems like Theo is working hard. You don’t score/create 20 goals on pure talent alone. He has been working on his touch and dribbling skills. Last season I recall him taking the odd foray in-field. If he adds that ability to his game, defenders will no longer be able to pin him to the side line.

    stat attack: Theo has been involved in 25.6% of Arsenal’s EPL goals this season.

  92. billturner90

    I think that Theo is aware that if he wants to succeed as a footballer he will not be able to coast like other more talented (or c$ntish, if you like) players.

  93. billturner90

    haha, our friends at goal.com have this index for certain stats, and they have given Theo a higher “diving” rating than Gareth Bale!

  94. One difference between Theo and Cashley he isn’t a hoe, his been with the same girl for years now and that girl is one who is studying, modest and most importantly isn’t a ‘glamour’ model. Thank god!

  95. If we should be worried about any player it’s Tommy V whose left his Belgium girlfirend and now is dating a ‘media personality’ who was once the play thing of Sid Owen better known as Ricky from Eastenders. Oh dear….

  96. Philmar, off late you have been speaking a lot about the distractions in a city like London…:-)

  97. mumbai gooner

    Echoing Maria.. I remember reading how melanie was embarrassed to go to her uni in the beetle gifted by theo as most of the students were not rich

    A humble GF obviously means theo is also humble

  98. mumbai gooner

    My intuition says that theo will stay without making a fuss (all this is tabloid BS)

  99. theo doesnt seem to be the greatest player in the world but when hes on form hes unplayable…that pace and his underated ability to finish are just, well, what can you do to stop it?
    he does need to start being more consistent but if we look back through the years hes really added to his game..hes learned to bulk up, stay fit, assist the top scorer for quite a few of his tap ins, get back and defend..hes experienced..
    all thats left for him to do is to really get in the goals..it looked like it was starting to come last season but i think its fair to start expecting nearer to twenty goals from theo this season..
    as for his wage, i dont really give a shit..im upfor giving rvp 150-200k a week to keep him so using that logic theos at least worth 100k..
    but theres also the little coup we got with podolski..hes apparently got himself 100k a week so to be fair players like theo and song have a right to knock on the managers door and demand parity..
    whatever the money, the important thing to remember is that he is in his final year so hes worth fuck all.. if theo walcott signs a new 5 year deal then his value rockets so its worth hanging onto him, even if it takes a chunk of cash..
    england number 7
    arsenal number 14
    if he bangs the goals in as well then we are talking 30-50mil if mancity or chelsea want him..

    no brainer..

  100. YW.
    Many, many, many thanks for not dwelling too much upon the faacinating contracts of two (sssssh! Some slacky hackies may be reading)or three* players whilst the footy was still on.

    *sssssh! Some slacky hackies may be reading

  101. Oh dear. I meant ‘fascinating’.
    I think I’ve been infected with a touch of the Jibbers.

  102. “Jib Jabba,
    Jib Jabba
    Jib Jabba
    JibberJibberJibberJibber”

    *the first few lines are to the tune of ‘run rabbit’.

  103. Evening Fins – you been at Bob’s cwider? 😉

  104. billturner90

    how do you feel about the 4-5-1 / 4-3-3 system that is so widely being used now?

    Sometimes it seems as if we are just way to slow getting the ball forward. We look very dangerous at the end of games when using the 4-2-4 kind of deal with Chamakh and RVP with Theo and Gervinho. I am just thinking wishfully as I don’t foresee a switch from the current system. ah feck it I am bored and playing champ manager. Office jobs will kill you like that.

  105. I wish Jonny!

  106. Whats up folks.

    Walcott has not been inconsistent this season but if he has, I cannot wait for him to be consistent; he would average about 20+ goals and Assists per season.

  107. billturner90

    hey paul-n. I agree man. People clamour for consistency…look at stewey downings, he is consistently shit!

  108. “If we should be worried about any player it’s Tommy V whose left his Belgium girlfirend and now is dating a ‘media personality’ who was once the play thing of Sid Owen better known as Ricky from Eastenders. Oh dear….”

    How tacky! Might also explain some of his distracted performances this season!

  109. Downing is an ample reminder of how much we should appreciate what we have.

  110. billturner90

    I agree with you Jonny. Too bad that there are some people who will laugh at you and say “well fuck, our trophy cabinet has been empty for the past 7 years!!”

  111. “i think song will be no2. and vermaelen no3”

    Vermaelen? Really?

  112. pedantic george

    it has to be Arshavin,I mean Rosicky!

  113. billturner90

    no Theo??

  114. Passenal

    personally i voted for arteta. and i knew RVP would be first. i thought kos would be 2nd and arteta third.

    i am trying to think who could come up ahead of kos and arteta, and it must be a really popular player like vermaelen, who hasnt had the best of seasons, but i am sure people will be thinkiing about his winner against newcastle.

  115. billturner

    voting is a popularity contest. i love theo, i think the comments that his final balls have been poor are utter bollocks. i thought his final ball has been fantastic. at the start of the season, they were delicious, but no one got to them. once rvp started getting to them, he was banging in even more goals.

    but no, i honestly doubt arsenal fans appreciate theo.

  116. can we please have a petition to get stewart robson removed again?

  117. so hazard has gone over to the dark side.

    i have been thinking: if we want to sign someone from ajax, maybe we should be looking at christian eriksen?

  118. Korihikage, I suppose anything is possible, but I just had not considered his performances worthy of a top 5 finish and especially not for him to finish above Koscielny as the top defender.

  119. pedantic george

    I agree .Kor.

  120. billturner90

    Korihkage i hear you man. I bet you don’t hear Stoke City fans berating their wingers when 79 of the 80 crosses they send in per game aren’t successful. Just as well, i have watched many games this past season when TV5 and Kos cleared cross after cross. The newcastle game in particular was astounding. TV5 was a good 5 inches above Sandy Carroll’s head every time a cross was sent in the box.

  121. “can we please have a petition to get stewart robson removed again?”

    I’ll be happy to sign it again – I’m not getting value for money out of Arsenal Player, since I can only watch the re-runs if I know he is not the co-commentator! It’s so bad, I had to switch the commentary off for the France/Iceland game as soon as I heard his voice – it just grates on me now.

  122. korihikage, Eriksen’s been said to have said that his style is best suited to Spain & he’d like to move there next season (2014). Wonder what happens if Spain’s recession deepens & neither Madrid nor Barca come-a-calling?

  123. Passenal “I suppose anything is possible”?!

    *cough*

    Oxlade Chamberlain! 😀

  124. Passenal, maybe top5 just not top3.

    maybe chezzer is in the top 3. i think song must be in it..

  125. @ this rate we might have to start another petition….to get Stewart Robson neutered!”
    What a dufus!

  126. Aman

    oh they will…no idea if their money is real though. but u will see the spaniards pulling a barca jersey over eriksen’s head at a press conference

  127. OOOPS!!! Sorry guys. I don’t read the celebrity rags or websites but do see them out of the corner of my eye. I never ever realised that it was the same girl. I really don’t pay much attention to that crap. So i didn’t know it was the same wag. It’s just that when I saw Theo in the celebrity rags I just assumed he was going dowm that route (like Cashley)

  128. billturner90

    I was just looking at some CL stats, in terms of key passes per game, Eriksen is rated 3rd, behind Danny and Ozil, and above Messi, Robben, Ribery, Gourcuff, and this Russian kid Dzagoev.

  129. ….and during televised matches when he is in the stands (when he’s injured/not playing) he’s often next to some young thing. i didn’t know it was the same girl. Ok I will start brushing up on my wags from now one. Sorry to have incorrectly maligned Theo.

  130. billturner90

    Philmar don’t worry man. I found out that they have been dating since he was 15! hopefully he can show the same commitment to the Arsenal.

  131. I know am late but these are some stats on theo (well reserched). Please this is not an attack on walcott, just a look at areas where he can improve his game.

    Although walcott has posted some good numbers in terms of goals and assists there is still plenty of improvement to be made, these are just the surface, more to come later.
    Walcott has polarized opinion in terms of his final ball/crossing ability well lets take a closer look into the wild, wild world of raw statistics – In all the matches theo has played in the league this season, he has attempted 134 crosses, 18 of them accurate with a success rate of 13%, now that is woeful, to get a better idea, another winger who has been much maligned about his final ball(lennon) has attempted 54 crosses, 14 of them accurate with a success rate of 26%, make of that what you will.
    In terms of losing possesion walcott loses the ball every 27minutes compared to lennon who has lost the ball 19 times throughout the season, every 83minutes. Theo also has a pass completion rate of 79% to lennon’s 86%, he has also been dispossessed the most number of times in the league along with adebayor, now this might not mean much at first glance but the more you lose the ball the less effective you become during the course of a match so retaining possesion is an area that requires improvement from walcott.
    On to some more important stats, walcott has contributed 8 goals and 8assists in 34matches to bale’s 9 goals and 10 assists in 36 matches, lennon has 5 assists and 3goals in, valencia 4 goals and 13 assists in 27 matches, nani 8 goals and 10assists in 28matches and ashley young 6 goals and 7 assists in 25matches.
    From this it is safe to say walcott is on par with the best wingers but as always there is scope for improvement.
    From these stats i think we can say that the frustration of fans towards walcott stems from the number of wayward crosses and amount of time he gets dispossessed and loses possesion considering which only gets highlihted more because arsenal players hardly lose possession.
    In conclusion two areas walcott is lacking in is
    * crossing/final ball
    * Retaining of possesion.
    If he can work on these two areas during the summer then maybe he will become a more complete winger.

  132. khalifa

    one thing you might want to consider: what do they mean by a successful cross? is it a cross that was met by a teammate? or is it a cross met by a teammate, resulting in a shot? or is it a cross met by a teammate, resulting in a shot on target?

    or is it a cross that was put into the box with the right weight, not cleared first time by the defender, but no attacker was able to get into the box?

    i don’t know, you know. personally i believe a brilliant pass looks silly if no one gets on to the end of it. and sometimes it is not up to the passer..

    though i will always still see it as a brilliant pass.

  133. And please don’t come at me with ‘blah blah blah his final ball is good’, i know it is good, there is still much room for improvement.

  134. billturner90

    khalifa, thanks for that man….Theo has time on his side. I’m sure his ball possession and crossing skills have been highlighted by the management as target areas for improvement.

    One thing to keep in mind, Theo is usually crossing to RVP, who, while capable in the air, doesn’t look first for the crossed ball. Maybe the two of them could work out some signal that determines whether the ball is coming near or far post?

  135. obviously there is room for improvement. there is always room for improvement until we win all 38 games. even then, we could still improve in that we win all 38 games 5-0. and even then, we could still improve in that we win all 38 games 10-0.

    my point is just you bring up stats. stats tell you something, but they don’t tell you the full story.

    one thing i feel we have to improve on is our midfield and the other wide player coming into the box to attack the ball when one wide player crosses the ball. THAT would improve your stats for everyone who crosses the ball. theo, bac, gibbs, whoever.

  136. Korihikage, a successful cross means a teammate has gotten on to the end of it, it doesn’t matter if it results in a shot on target or goal. Also, i get your point on the validity of a succesful cross stat but out of 134 if 18 was successful and give or take 10 more were quality deliveries it will still add up to 28 successful out of 134, with 20% success rate( 1 in 5), that is still a poor stat.

  137. khalifa,

    so which winger has a success rate of more than 20%? aside from lennon of course.

  138. Korihikage, that ‘room for improvement’ was not directed at you, hope you didn’t take it the wrong way?

    Billturner, no problem man, i enjoyed researching those stats. And yes, walcott almost always has only v.persie to target maybe they can work more on this aspect during pre-season.

  139. As far as Theo’s crossing, sure it is not perfect just yet but many times Arsenal player’s don’t get into the blasted box. I have seen it countless times that a good cross comes in and we dont have anyone in the box. Contrast that to United and other teams where you have 3 to 4 players running to get on the end of a cross.

    Khalifha, do you have a stats of how many players on average get into the box when Theo puts in a cross? Should it be expected that more players get into the box? can a cross be good and no offensive player attacks it?

  140. khalifa

    nope, i didnt take it the wrong way.

  141. Limestonegunner

    Kori, anything particular prompting the anti-Robson call? Like Passenal, quite apart from what he says, I find his voice alone deeply annoying now.

  142. LSG

    not so sure. i just signed it the last time round.. was it MGK who posted the link here?

  143. Limestone, Robson made some very disrespectful comments about Walcott.

  144. Paul N, i understand what you mean, there are other variables that are not taken into account when accumulating these stats but those variables also affect other winger’s statistics, at the end of the day walcott has the least impressive numbers in terms of crossing.

    Korihikage, you asked for the crossing percentage of other wingers, right?, well here they are;
    Adam johnson has attempted a total of 135 crosses with 25% success rate, ashley young has attempted 163 crosses, 34 successful with a 25% success rate, downing has 23% success rate(0 goals 0 assists), milner has attempted 81 crosses, 18 successful with a 22% success rate, chamberlain has attempted 30crosses, 7 successful with a 23% success rate.
    Again, walcott has attempted 134 crosses, 18 successful with a 13% success rate. There is a big room for’ wait for it ….. Improvement.

  145. Well, that little chat Stewart Robson’s manager at Arse Player had with him really had a positive effect didnt it?

    What a cunt.

  146. Limestone

    He called Theo a liability FFS! And said we should ditch him. The man is a balloon.

  147. Theo isnt a winger, all this shit about crosses completely misses his attributes and shows people up for being either clueless, or agenda driven.

    Robson is a racist cunt.

  148. sorry LSG i misread ur question. but thankfully the rest have already answered it 🙂

    so what i think is that it is between theo and him. and i choose theo any day.

  149. Khalifha, if you understand then it would make sense to hold off on the critique of atleast temper it with the other facts. If Arsenal players got into the box more often, it stands to reason that his stats would be better. So simply to point to stats and a need to improve to me is not the right line of thinking as all players can improve. To me it is our movement in the box that is weak. United players crash the box, so it is not surprising that Young and Nani would have better stats.

  150. I think what infuriates many people and TV pundits about Theo’s crossing is that because of his speed he is more likely to get past the opposing FB and create a direct line to the box. When he’s done this he sometimes heels it meekly at a waiting CB rather than the hoped for curved delivery through the eye of the proverbial needle (over the CB and right on to the foot of a teammate). His crossing has improved. Many wingman don’t have to beat the FB but a full step to deliver in a cross. Some can curve it in even when they are level with the FB. That’s where Theo can improve. Once he can do that then he doesn’t even have to beat the FB.

  151. khalifa

    thanks for the stats. didnt realise adam johnson played that much to put in that many crosses.

  152. Ahh, here’s philmar to show his cluelessness.

  153. Paul N,

    agreed totally. the Ox’s relative better percentage can be attributed to lower sample size (his number of crosses)

  154. lol!

    Dex, wah gwaan mi bredrin?

  155. Eden Hazard will join the newly crowned European champions for £32m on a five‑year deal worth £100,000 a week after tax.
    How much are Vela and Bendtner earning per week?

  156. Dexter, why don’t you go sit by a corner where no one can see you, and
    ”Theo isnt a winger, all this shit about crosses completely misses his attributes and shows people up for being either clueless, or agenda driven” …. You dimwitted egghead, i took time out to look for research those stats to show areas where walcott can improve and you come here talking complete Bs, what stupid agenda would i have at 10:15pm, fcukturd.

  157. what infuriates me about theo is that he doesnt show how well he can finish sometimes. he ought to be more ruthless, cut in and shoot.

    he has all the attributes of the player i want on the flank. i dont want a conventional winger. i want a forward who makes diagonal runs in to finish.

  158. Right korihikage, if you have 1 successful cross out of 3 crosses that is a better percentage than most. But that is no indication that that will contunie.

  159. Theo’s position really defies any label. I guess the same goes for about every position on the pitch (when talking about Arsenal that is)

  160. Interesting but completely inneffective rebuttal Dexter

  161. Fcuk, i thought we were past this, i have been blogging here for what? 2months now and yet there is an agenda behind a well researched statistical analysis, if you had taken time to read through my first comment you will see that i mentioned that walcott was on par with the best wingers in the league, but nooo, your peanut sized brain could only pick up on the discussion of theo’s poor crossing stat, way to go you shithead.

  162. khalifha

    I didnt even see your post about crosses. Your persecution complex and paranoia is very funny, well for me anyway, but for you must be a real bind.

    PaulN

    Yes I star! I am irie! Robson’s comments show him to be a very sad bitter old never been.

    Philmar

    After tax? Probably about £20k, but what was your agenda there? Oh and those ‘facts’ were from a tabloid, but anyhoo, they suggest he is being paid £200k a week you complete…

    Wanker

  163. Philmar

    stick to curling you lump.

    You think Theo is a winger, just like this blogs answer to the bi-polar jack Nicholson in the Shining… here’s Khalifha! 🙂

  164. I miss Harry Enfield. Is he still on TV?

  165. When I say TV I mean ‘television’ not one of Arsenal’s CBs…

  166. brananas

  167. Its like fucking Groundhog Day on here and the fact that some cannot wait to jump on the Theo bashing shows them up.

    Oh and I have seen Theo in the flash many times, I dont just blindly stick up for Arsenal players, or have favourites. He has shown countless times he is top quality for us. He can and will improve, but overall, there are far more players that deserve critiques of their performance which renders this continuous sniping really distasteful.

    Basically, you slate Theo and you’re a right James Hunt. 🙂

  168. mdgunner

    Hahaha! Nice.

  169. I was commenting on what other people say (pundits) about Theo’s play on the wing. Not sure how that equals I am agenda driven or that I state he is a winger. But maybe your meds have run out. Reread your prescription mate. We all love Arsenal here and give our opinions. You get nasty and angry for no reason at all. Why are you taking this personally? Nobody is allowed to criticise an aspect of Theo’s game just because you have recurring mandreams with him?

  170. Paul N, i can’t even have an arguement with you, why? i was checking out the archives in this blog and decided to look at the post the day after we lost to barca 4-1 and the nou camp, there were so many strange names in the comments section but i saw ‘paul-N’ and recognised your name. While everyone was losing their heads you were still flying the flag for arsenal and remaining positive, for that i salute you. Legend!

    Dexter, if only i could bitch slap you through the internet, you still remain a fcukturd gee.

  171. Yeh Dex. The guy is bitter for some reason. I wonder if Walcott signed the petition?

    That was vicious. Arsenal need to do something about that guy and soon. It makes no sense for a paid employee to behave like he does.

  172. You are pathetic man. Getting all homophobic doesnt cover up your need to slate our players. Don’t give me any shite about this love of all things Arsenal. Your posts are constantly negative. You just dont have the balls to say what you really think on here. You’re yet another doomer light. Can spot em a mile off. So excuse me if i call you out on it.

    And I am still waiting to hear why you asked what Bendtner and |vela earn?

    lets have it then?

  173. Mr Arsenal is now on twitter

    @adamstony6

  174. “Passenal, maybe top5 just not top3”

    Top 11 maybe, same for Szczesny.

    Not that I read the gossip rags either Philmar, but I believe Theo is getting married this summer. Although I’m not too sure when he will be able to fit it in between the Euro’s and pre-season touring!

  175. khlalifha

    You crack me up man.

  176. Lol, you even had a minor arguement with yogi concerning our injury crises in comparism with barca’s.
    If only dexter had the …. Nah, too nasty, cn’t say it.

  177. Well that is humbling. Appreciated Khalifha.

    I am always up for debating differing views still.

  178. “Theo Walcott, for me, is not a good footballer. He is an athlete who puts on a pair of football boots.”

    Stewart Robson

  179. Oh and for the ultra sensitive ninnies on this blog, the agenda thing was aimed at Stewart Robson, Waddle, hansen etc. FFS.

  180. Limestonegunner

    Was Robson commenting for the England game over the weekend or is he a pundit on some football show that I am delighted not to get on tv out here? Where/when did he slate Theo?

    Not that it is surprising. He loves to round on the players, but his agenda really is anti-AW. Does look like our petition hasn’t done much good so far.

  181. pedantic george

    Dexter ,why is Robson a racist?

  182. Limestone

    he just came out with it on talkshite radio. Not sure if he was specifically asked a Q about Theo, or if he just volunteered it man. Still, as PaulN says, completely unneccesary, vicious and personal abuse, more than a critique. How comes Downing conveniently avoids even a hundredth of this shit? Now, he is rubbish.

  183. Limstone, It seems like it was an interview on talksports. He seems to believe that Walcott is out of order if he asked for some more money.

  184. George

    because it fits my agenda man.

  185. khalifa

    i appreciated your stats. i appreciated your recognition that there needs to be improvement.

    i just wanted to point out that stats dont tell the full story. and yes, everyone can improve.

  186. Limestonegunner

    That serves you folks right for even listening to that river of bile–I’ve tuned in once or twice online to their stream in the past couple of years and been put right off.

  187. LSG

    I never listen to it mate, it appeared as a story on newsnow.

  188. pedantic george

    OK Dexter,But I would have thought you of all people would want some evidence.

  189. Korihikage, thanks man, its all good.

    These so called pundits have managed to deceive people on what is and what isn’t. They have been so brainwashed by their never ending bullshi.t that they themselves believe the rubbish they say on tv.
    Take for example koscielny and arterta, if they were actually any good in what they do by now these two players would have gotten the recognition they deserve instead guys like vidic gets praised for winning headers and fouling any player not wearing a man utd shirt.
    This is the extent that people have been brainwashed, a writer for opta stats made an article on the team of the season based on statistics, koscielny turned out to be the best among the central defenders, now this is the absurd part, the writer decided to bring in other factors into his analysis like goals conceded am sure when he saw that the god of war ‘kompany’ was not there and replaced koscielny with him as it didn’t go with the general thinking that kompany is the best defender in the league.
    Just goes to show that if you say something enough times it becomes fact, yea like ‘shift of power in northlondon’, hahah still cracks me up.

  190. Bradys right foot

    Ahh good old Theo bashing Tuesday i see, makes me miss Kozzer kicking Wednesday and Mikel panic signing Monday.

  191. I’d like Robin to stay but it seems that may ve to depend on Wenger’s ability to buy quality players for next season.

  192. Have read all your posts re Robson and his Theo tirade. For those who have not read what he said:

    http://www.goal.com/en/news/9/england/2012/05/29/3135404/arsenal-should-sell-walcott-if-he-asks-for-new-contract

    Never was his biggest fan but that being said he was a decent enough player. I just do not get why he is considered such a tactical expert. His only expertise is in hindsight in my opinion. Why, if he is half as good as he thinks he is, does he not put forward a tactical plan pre-game? i mean these so-called experts parform autopsies on games AFTER they are played, pointing out mistakes and missed opportunities, conveniently ignoring the fact that todays game is played so fast, it is impossible to get every decision right. Theo’s ball skills certainly have suffered due to his reliance on his pace, but how could he have developed any differently? Play slower for a few years and concentrate on skill rather than speed and athleticism? It is the equivalent of telling players such as Carrol, Crouch and the like to ignore using there heading ability, as that is as good as it gets, but instead play the ball on the ground for 2-3 years and become a more balanced player. In a word, bollocks! Robson should fuck off and commentate on Stokes games for a season, then he might appreciate what he has at The Arsenal. Somehow I doubt he would…

  193. A brilliantly written article on Arsene himself by Sian Ransocmbe, writer of the blog ‘From a girl who loves the Gunners’

    http://thesubstantive.com/2012/05/arsene-wenger/

    Bloody well said Siany!! 🙂

  194. wouldnt sell Walcott, he is a key piece in the system, a player that makes the runs in behind when RvP comes deep, a player that fully understands what the system is.

    He is inconsistent, but you dont sell wingers that get into double digits for both goals and assists several seasons running, you hold onto them.

  195. BRF and Irishgray

    Good stuff dudes.

    Khalifha

    Still waiting for that apology man. 🙂

  196. No wonder Bobby Gould can’t stand Robsons guts. What a gobby Mitch (man bitch).

  197. “Great players inspire you. The best player I played with was Gervi [Gervinho].

    “We didn’t have the same qualities, but we both tried to make the difference. He taught me some things. He makes the right runs.”

  198. Khalifha
    Still waiting for that apology man …
    Dexter, i wouldn’t hold my breath if i were you.

  199. pedantic george

    Dexter .
    Who said it?
    I can do most things but …………………..

  200. pedantic george

    “Mitch”
    I like that.
    Dexter,you are a Mitch,don’t you know?

  201. It was Hazard george.

    khalifha

    Your mental health problems make your posts funny, but you are still on probation for your Theo bashing.

    That applies doubly to you George.

    Now fuck off, I am busy! 🙂

  202. George

    And you’re a cat funt man.

  203. pedantic george

    And you are a cosy dunt

  204. Irishgray, i checked out that link you posted, it looks like somebody has it in for walcott.

    Dexter, your lack of brain cells makes you a thick cunt, but am not surprised. As for the ‘theo bashing’ nonsense thats your own opinion, luckily your opinion means shit to me, now run along shithead.

  205. George, i see you have managed to restrain yourself from commenting on ‘theo bashing’, thats what you also call it right, good for you.

  206. pedantic george

    “khalifha | May 29, 2012 at 11:31 am
    Ah yes theo walcott, sometimes i ask myself who is the bigger enigma between arshavin and walcott, they both post good numbers in terms of goals and assists but yet am not quite sure what to make of them. When they’re good, they’re good and when they are bad, their game will be woeful and thats the biggest problem, there is no middle ground, ”

    Good observation,but there the similarity ends.Arshavin is a natural talent and instinctive footballer.
    Theo ,well he isn’t.But his other qualities make his a huge asset to the team.

  207. mumbaigooner

    come on fellas..enough of fighting..this blog is a sanctuary not le shite

  208. Pedantic, what am i seeing :O, does that mean you think walcott adds more to arsenal than arshavin.

  209. Mumbaigooner, it can’t always be sunshine and rainbow here, you know.

  210. pedantic george

    Khalifha,No.
    Simply different abilities.
    Having said that,perhaps he does in the current formation.
    But if Andrei was set free in the middle…………….
    I miss that little fellow , terribly 😦

  211. George

    I think its quite sweet how you have taken the special needs one under your (bingo) wing!

    khalifha

    You’ll get yourself binned by Yogi if you persist with your offensive posts. You called me a fuckturd (lame as fuck diss BTW) for no reason and you continue to do so. Yogi takes a dim view of such puerile playground antics. You wouldnt catch me doing anything so childish.

  212. pedantic george

    Are people actually fighting?
    I thought it was good humoured.
    Am I missing some genuine bad blood?

  213. Arshavin’s a useless lazy fat arsed cunt.

  214. George

    I am not sure man, I dont think khalifha does subtle man. He’s up and down like your ill fighting leggings.

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