Medicals, Signings – Could Transfer Talk Turn Into Action?

Aaaah, I love the smell of napalm in the morning. Not that we get much of it here in Middle England. Well, sort of just north of Middle England really. That’s what happens when you get sucked into the transfer vortex. Insanti. I don’t care if Cazorla turns out to be more elusive than Park; I just want him to sign because I can have a couple of seasons of fun with the name and puns.

It won’t be long to wait either. The puns and the signing, if reports are to be believed. Did we get this far with Juan Mata last summer? I can’t recall there being flights booked for him to come to London and have a medical. Not for Arsenal, anyway. Presuming of course that Yann M’vila’s tent can be moved off the treadmill. Ah, the salutory warning arrives. We’ve been here before, we’ll be here again.

I know that the two cases are slightly different – OK I don’t know that they are and frankly I cannot see any difference between the two, save for the financial plight that Malaga find themselves in. Rennes have a proper, bona fide, certified Sugar Daddy; one intent on having a well-run club. The Andaluz club had to happen at some point; fake sheikh’s or at least ones who do not care for football and when things are not done their way, taking the highway out of town, leaving the footballing hopes of a city in tatters. Malaga will survive, in what form is not yet known with more brinkmanship from potential purchasers but the pitfalls of wanting money – any money – to arrive at the club are in plain sight.

For Cazorla, the chance to play in the Champions League and potentially win trophies, it represents too good an opportunity to miss. For Arsenal, the signing would strengthen the squad without doubt. Cazorla is versatile, more than a back-up plan in case someone leaves. It represents ambition, a desire to strengthen the squad, to enable a group of maturing players to challenge for trophies. Ricky (@GeezyPeas) hit the nail on the head yesterday,

Forget using who we’ve signed to justify ambition. We are ‘The Arsenal’ where ambition shouldnt be questioned.

Yet we always seemed surprised when Arsenal sign good players. Especially when they are relatively expensive. That may not apply to Cazorla where the fee has been strongly rumoured to be lower than the £17m or so reported in this morning’s press. With Malaga’s debt believed to be twice that, such generosity cannot be expected; even desperation has its limits.

What does Cazorla mean for Arsenal, in broader terms of activity this summer? To begin with, I think his signing would scotch any deal for Sahin. Too many attacking midfielders spoil the broth. There are only so many players who can pass the ball around the box without taking a shot. The Spaniard’s versatility offers so many options across the midfield that signing another creative player strains the senses.

Talks are ongoing with Theo Walcott’s advisors – and Arsène is rumoured to be holding talks today with the player – which hints at progress, doors remaining open rather than ajar. I still believe he will sign a new contract at the club; either that or he has seen the reaction Robin van Persie received with his announcement and is playing an altogether more canny game. If he goes, yes, Cazorla is insurance and Sahin makes sense as a signing. Bear in mind the ultimate loser in the Turkish international joining appears to be Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and I cannot envisage a scenario where Arsène would ‘kill’ his career.

A statement is expected from Malaga today on their whole situation and it seems inconceivable that they will not refer to Cazorla speculation in those circumstances. If the statement is made…hope lives or dies in this instant world in which we live.

Elsewhere, Emmanuel Frimpong is having to reassess the pricing of his clothing line following the FA fine of £6k for his Twitter indiscretion. Frimpong called it an ‘expensive month’; the master of the understatement indeed. Robin van Persie apparently has signed for Juventus already according to an Italian agent who has been referred to as a ‘mover and shaker’; St Vitus Dance might be another explanation for that. A shame that the Turin club is in all sorts of disarray at the moment. A shame for the story since it puts all sorts of holes in it.

Alex Song and Marouane Chamakh are apparently ‘outcasts’ at Arsenal now. I know, I know, I shouldn’t have continued reading the story but Charlie Dubuck in this morning’s Daily Express appears to know nothing about the club whatsoever and just for Song being termed an ‘outcast’, it is worth reading. It brought a smile to my face.

’til Tomorrow

Posted on August 2, 2012, in Arsenal, Football, Soccer, Transfer Gossip and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 346 Comments.

  1. morning YW,hopefully this cazorla transfer gets sorted ASAP.this will be one hell of a season.

  2. I think signing Theo for a long contract is far more important than any imaginary signings. And yes you’re right you should have stopped!
    Nice one YW

    Lukas Podolski and Olivier Goroud

  3. Good morning YW.

    I hope we complete the Cazorla transfer today. Talking of Sahin, I would love to see him in the red and white and I don’t think he will be played in the AOC position. He will be played mostly in Arteta/Song position as a deep lying playmaker, one who is adept in defending as well.

    That is where he shone in the Borussia Dortmund and being described as a Xabi Alonso successor at Madrid.

    “Forget using who we’ve signed to justify ambition. We are ‘The Arsenal’ where ambition shouldnt be questioned.”

    Quite something, yes! WE ARE THE ARSENAL!

  4. A loan move for Sahin makes sense – to give AOC time to develop and avoid over-playing him. The news is up on BBC…sounds promising…

  5. I am pretty confident about Theo signing a new contract with us. He is not involved right now in the contract negotiations, he has let the agent play it out for him. As he mentioned, he sits down only at the final stage of the negotiations, so I suspect, we will have an agreement with Theo by the end of the week.

    He has consistently grown throughout his Arsenal career. At his age and considering the impact he has on the opponent team, he must remain an Arsenal player.

  6. godwinamos2rich

    Why is song being termed an outskirt?I think he did his best for us last season,and for any player who wants to go should b alloewd to go,without them arsenal will remain arsenal,gunners for life.

  7. Still Wenger might employ Sahin as an AM…remember Cesc had aspirations of becoming a DM. Sahin is also good at assists. This would leave Song to concentrate on defensive duties. Carzola will play as a winger. I know…too many assumptions…but…

  8. Gosh I hope to God no one ever leaves Alex Song to concentrate on defensive duties. We’d lose the single most important not to mention beautiful part of his game. It’d be like saying we should leave Scezney to concentrate on taking corners.

  9. First team training pictures, the new ones are out at

    Last time round, it was more Robin, less of the others, this time, we see Robin only in one picture, but lots of Podolski.

    Should we read in to this and know that we got our replacement?

  10. Nice start to the day YW.

  11. I just read that article that YW linked to. Is it some sort of spoof. The last sentence reads “Song failed to make an impact at the Emeirates”.

    Does this bloke even watch football?

  12. Peacefrog,

    Maybe, but I am not sure Arsene wants to restrict any of our midfielders. “Express themselves” is often used by him. So there are no rigid roles, but I think Sahin, if bought, would have a starting position similar to Arteta/Song.


    Relax mate, we will see a lot more of those floated balls over the defence waiting to be struck by a sweet left foot… of??? RVP? Podolski? Giroud?

  13. 13 assists for a deep lying midfielder and he had failed to make an impact at the Emirates. Who is that guy?

  14. Insanti. 🙂

  15. Taking of transfers, we have released Almunia. Is Fabianski staying? Szcezsny promoted to No.1. Who is the backup?

    I would love it if we signed an old keeper who can come in, do the job when necessary, teach the kids a few tricks in training.

  16. he is here nw 4 medical , ilonrente is nxt if Rvp leaves

  17. Fabianski is injured…that leaves Mannone as backup…

  18. Is he? He played in some of the Asian tour games; is he injured again?

  19. Looking at Sahin on youtube…the highlight seems to be floating passes. So we do have someone who can replicate Song in that aspect…

  20. Post from yesterday..

    >Yogi’s Warrior | August 1, 2012 at 2:42 pm
    Yogi, I don’t think it was ever claimed casting the deadwood adrift was easy, only that it was essential.


    You’d be surprised how many people genuinely believe buying and selling is very simple.


    That is so damn true! There are so many people who just berate the club for not selling players.

    “Hey Arsene, why do we still have Diaby, Squillaci, Denilson, Bendtner, Almunia, etc. in our squad. Inefficient management.

    In Arsene we RUST”

    It is so simplistic or rather mindless of these people to talk like this. Often they don’t understand the intricacies involved in a transfer and how many people have to get in to a consensus for it to go through.

    This considering the prudent and realistic way in which we do our business.

    For teams like City or Chelsea, the quantum that is paid to get a transfer through does not matter in the least, throw your money and get the transfer done, that’s a total different strategy.

  21. Isn’t Mannone moving to Hull city?

  22. Chamakh was caught smoking a shisha pipe and sing faked to make an impact at the Emirates? That is possibly one of the greatest articles ever written by anyone ever. I am sure when this guy comes down he will amend his folly. I doubt it!

  23. Thanks for the link peacefrog, BBC are usually right.

  24. Sahil

    Beebs report transfers only at their final stage. So the deals are close. Let’s see.

  25. Like Aman says, the Purple Double, this year.

  26. Hold your horses everybody. It was not long ago that M’Villa was “signed” if you remember. That looked as good as a done deal, but yet nothing.

    Plenty of these stories start on Twitter. And as we all know, anybody can start a rumor there. The latest story is just as likely to be instigated by a small boy in his bedroom.

    I am sticking with Bobs advice.

  27. Do the transfer intime we like to se cazola at Arsenal. Up Gunner for live

  28. After absorbing all the news, near news and bona fide griff that is circulating this morning, I have a huge anticipation of the season to come. Let me explain.
    We have signed Messrs Podolski and Giroud.
    Senor Cazorla will shortly take a “Cough, please” medical.
    Arsene says there are more on the way.
    Diaby is back and Wilshere won’t be long. Gervinho seems to have been regenerated.
    A few of our rising stars shone during the Asian tour and will soon earn the odd place in the first team
    Last summer’s signings will now enter their second season in the EPL with the added experience that will bring.

    On the downside, I feel that from day one, Arsene will have a perpetual headache over team selection….but he won’t mind that! Our bench will be sizzling!
    Read again my comment above and marvel at the things to come. 😆

  29. I think we may just win the league!

  30. Song is more important than VP,we can get more VPs but there is only one song,POLDI and GIROUD are deadly strikers that can cause havoc to the opposition defense,with santi and sahin in d mildfield,Arsenal is too good to be defeated….

  31. Good news if rumours are true…………ping me all BB users @ 25E32F52

  32. Dat a gud news, bt we still need anoder 1 or 2 player, u r wlcme cazorla

  33. Nicky – you missed one other thing… Hopefully Bouldy is going to knock some of our defensive frailties into shape

  34. Can’t see us getting Sahin considering his and Podolski’s rivalry in the Bundesliga, I’d like to see Cazorla join though. People comparing him to Cesc are deluded, they seem to forget Cesc was the best playmaker in the PL and one of the best in the world.

  35. I am keeping my powder dry on all this until somebody tells me both are on the official website.

    The BBC haven’t really added anything new, just a rehash of stories from other sites which we would choose not to believe.

    We’ve already had the medical thing this summer with other players and as for Sahin all the Beeb has said is “will join on a season-long basis if the player and clubs reach an agreement”. If.

    In the real world I was duly impressed by Ramsey last night.

  36. fyneface belema

    carzola deal will soon be done…

  37. Steve – A wise move.

  38. Is it possible that a loan deal for Sahin could just be insurance for JW’s fitness?

  39. @Waz,
    I’d like to say it was a deliberate mistake….but it wasn’t.
    The point you make is probably more important than ANY of those I mentioned.
    Well said.

  40. That ‘Sports Journo’ in the express Charlie Dubfuck wants sacking. What an absolute mug! Great article though. Interesting that Inter Milan are apparently selling their soul to a chinese consortium who are planning to build them a new stadium, location to be defined… Brilliant. I’m so proud to be Arsenal, I do sincerely believe we are in safe hands, maybe not exceptionally exciting hands, but certainly safe. I also do believe that we have held fast to a long game strategy that will see us dominate for years to come once the new commercial deals have been done…

  41. Morning YW,

    “The Spaniard’s versatility offers so many options across the midfield that signing another creative player strains the senses”

    I feel the same way AND worry for AA’s chances of playing in CM if at all he’s retained.

    AW knows…

  42. Aman – I am not sure why everbody seems to think that AW will ever play AA there. He has never done so. Not once. Add to that he always plays a midfielder in that role. It is a pip dream (sorry George).

  43. …though if Robin departs I’d expect Arshavin’d stay.
    Abundant permutations…

    ..4 days left till boomer’s deadline

  44. OK after reading this

    “Dat a gud news, bt we still need anoder 1 or 2 player, u r wlcme cazorla”

    I have changed my mind. I now clearly see we definitely need to turn Alex Song into a defensive midfielder and sign a minimum of three new players and tear up our silly wages policy and pay RVP whatever he asks.

  45. GA,
    how many times do Dex & George have to tell you Arsene HAS indeed played AA in ACM?
    jeeeeez man…simmer down. U make it seem like its a bad thing….stop trying to burst my bubble….we will see pretty soon!

  46. I think Song had gr8 impact last year & is still relevant to the team.
    Why can’t we fans show support 4 our players always?
    Why are we always disgruntled with players following negative report by the media?
    Have you ppl ever verified the source b4 negatively reacting to the report?
    Do you know that other ppl use the report to there advantage?
    I think we should mind weigh the impact our comments have on players especially when we criticise them. I still have belief in players Wenger put trust in. ARSENAL 4 LIFE.

  47. I agree with Caxter!

  48. How much will he have to pay Arsenal for the opt out clause in the contract?

  49. Steww – and THEN sack Wenger?

  50. I see Sanchez Watt might be going to Bolton with Afobe.
    A forgotten talent, hope he does well.
    Coyle is a smart man

  51. No mata wat happns,d OX is future dependable talent. Alex Song needs a good backup in his class or beta dan him.VAN PERSIE is afraid of GIROUD N PODOLSKI 2 bench his one season magic so, he opts 2 leave. Tanks skippo 4 last season 2 keep us in C-LIG. Cheers.

  52. Steve & Andy;

    Are you too related? Just asking. 🙂

    Yogi; Although he can play as an attack minded player, Sahin can also operate as a DM. However, i am not suggesting we are even in for him, despite what the BBC says. And, no, I would not pay any more heed to the Beeb than I would any other source. They regurgitate rumours as much as any one. Just as the broadsheets are as bad, or even worse than the tabloids for it.

  53. I keep hearing that cazorla is on his way to london for a medical. how is he getting here? walkong?

    however if we sign cazorla it will effect on sahin. they are torally different. sahin would be the replacement for wilshire whereas cazorla is more of rosicky arshavin benayoun vela type player. cazorla is very attacking whereas sahin plays very deep.

  54. Andy;

    I wouldn’t say we were as ‘close’ to signing Yann the man as we seem to be with this spanish dude man. This one seems a lot more ‘real’ to me, anyway.

  55. That’s how I see it too bc. Well done! 🙂

  56. Its high time we stop calling Song a DM, isn’t it obvious he no longer plays that role? Infact if you ask me Arterta was BETTER defensively than Song last season, ya dig.

    Song is more of a box to box midfielder now, kinda like Khedira for Germany at the Euros and Yaya Toure for City. And what do City, Arsenal and Germany have in common? They all played a Deep lying mutha alongside these ‘box to box’ midfielders, Barry, Arterta and Scwiensterger(?)

  57. Summer Transfer wish list.

    Striker – Check

    AM – Check

    DM – Coquelain(?) check

    Back up Gk – *

  58. Very funny on here this morning.

    Think I’ll start buying the Express. Better than the Beano these days.

  59. Dexter

    Not related but two beacons of calm in the midst of a tide of hysteria.

    If they sign then great but you know as well as I do how every summer such and such a player is in Shenley or flying in when infact they have never set foot in London.

    The Beeb is as capable of making shit up as anybody.

    On a positive spin however both would be more than welcome additions, would represent quite a tactical change from AW as would have taken in 4 players all of whom would hope or expect to start.

  60. Any cunt who says ‘In Arsene We Rust’ needs to be gutted and strangled with their own fucking intestines.

  61. pedantic george

    “Aman – I am not sure why everbody seems to think that AW will ever play AA there. He has never done so.”

    Andy ,do you know anything?
    Would you like a large wager that AW has indeed played AA “there” ?

  62. Morning all.

    *sing song voice*


  63. George;

    Shouldnt you be all curled up under the desk at your masters side? 🙂

  64. Who is this bad girl ‘Eva’ and just how – exactly – does one ‘ping’ her?

    It sounds awfully exciting but I’m keeping my powder dry for the moment as well.

  65. Good moening Jonny (Some old misucal stylee)

  66. Without song arsenal will be very weak, because song can play at defence mid. Song shoud not be sell out.

  67. George – I honestly don’t remember he being deplyed there. And if he has, it has hardly been a regular feature. I don’t think it relects on AA particularly as AW prefers a midfielder in that role and not a forward.

  68. So much of this “alleged” (right Andy?) Cazorla transfer reminds me of the saga with Arshavin especially the pent-up obsession with new signings. In the case of AA he was to be the new Messiah. The idolatry went nuclear when he scored those four goals at Anfield. Two years later he was being booed. Remarkable isn’t it. Are we really that different from other fans?

  69. Isn’t the BBC website adamant that Carroll has signed on loan for West Ham whilst other sites have West Ham denying it?

  70. He has been Andy – worked well for one game (ish) the other – not so much.

    Not an experiment I see AW repeating.

  71. You are, Shotta. You are. 😉

  72. Andy is right, Arshavin has spent the bulk of his career playing wide left. Attacking mid is most certainly not his ‘best position’. And this talk of our attacking midfielder having less defensive duties is bollocks. Watch Ramsey playing there. We don’t play with passengers.

  73. IF/when we sign Cazorla, I think that will spell the end for AA’s Arsenal career, TBH.

  74. GA, he played there against Bolton in the carling cup last season – Right now Arshavin is just a luxury player.

  75. Shotta – Until I see differently I will refrain from getting too excited. We have been there too many times before. You crack on doing cartwheels though.

    Jonny – But that can’t be true. Plenty on here are sure it is his perfect position. Damn that French bloke for not listening to the hoards 😉

  76. Jumping in again half cocked and angry I see markus?

    You having a few issues lately?

  77. Highlighting individual examples of a player being asked to play a certain role proves nothing for either side of the AA almost daily debate.

    Wenger has asked Song to play in defence before, he has asked Djourou to play in midfield, Ramsey out wide in the forward line. Those of you who realise that football existed before the days of Sky television will remember the halcyon days when George Graham played luminaries such as Colin Pates and David O’Leary in midfield.

    Surely even the most loyal and blinkered fan of Arshavin would accept that his work-rate alone would suggest he is probably not going to be selected in midfield.

    Our midfield options are Arteta, Song, Ramsey, Wilshere, Rosicky, Diaby, Coquelin, Chamberlain and perhaps a new signing or two. Arshavin is not one of them.

    I still think he will leave.

  78. Dex – Yeah, same here. Even with the additions of Podolski he has slipped further down the pecking order.

  79. Morning! (*returning sing song voice*).

    ‘lympics looking good and by a miracle of miracles we have a non-rain affected start to the 2nd toss v the South Africans at Rain Central (aka Headingly, Yorkshire)

    Despite all the distractions, there’s only really one thing on the agenda …

    Good post YW, enjoyable read and I saw that lunatic writing in the Express; not a paper I’d read normally, one just wonders if everything they write is of a similar standard?

  80. Steve;

    I think we wi;; have seen the (big) back of AA if/when cazorla arrives. BUT I maintain he could, can and has played there for other teams more than Arsenal to be fair, but still.

    This notion that there’s more hard graft involved in the CAM position isn’t the case, NOT in our current line up. The wide players have to cover the fullbacks as well as tracking back and marking opposition players. I am not pretending its a cushy ride (sonmething that Arshavin was probably more used to at Zenit), but it is not as arduous, IMO.

  81. Where’s Aman?

    Apparantly Guiseppi Rossi’s available for between 7-8m Euros.

  82. Dex – Don’t agree with that. Both Ramsey and Rosicky put in huge a huge shift when playing there. both regularly picked the ball up from the back four as well. Whoever plays there need to put in a lot of graft and cover plenty of distance.

  83. Express is Mail Lite.

    A hideous paper for right-wing, middle-class hand wringers who like their hatred toned down slightly and like to obsess about Diana in perpetuity.

  84. back to Sahin, Yogi…
    given AW’s penchant for CMs the broth just might be overcooked….

    possible ramifications:

    LeCoq moves to RB #2 while Sagna’s out? making Jenks 3rd choice?..Nico gets loaned out with Frimp?


    Arteta & Diaby play DM & box2box ?
    Ramsey can play all 3 positions..becomes aux man?


  85. Eh, i think we can all agree that AA is not suited to the premier league, he is extremely talented but he doesn’t have the fitness and stamina to cope with the pace of the league.

    Err, is it just me or does Arshavin run faster when he gets substituted than when he is on pitch, just saying.

  86. Andy;

    So what? That means zilch mate. They are completely different players. They dont create a fraction of what a top CAM would. Horses for courses man. And anyway, how much effort do the wide players put in? Unless someone can produce a detailed break down of KMs run in those positions, we will be going round in circles.

    And I know you dont agree, you’ve said the same thing many times before.

    However, taking all that into consideration, IF we had a tip top class creative CAM operating infront of the 2 deeper lying midfielders, I would suggest those 2 behind would be expected to sit more than when we have had either Rosicky or ramsey.

    You are going on, like the system cannot be tweaked to take account of individual qualities etc.

  87. Big let off for Petersen in the slips there – England could regret that …

  88. Dex

    One of the reasons why Rosicky has been hoisted onto a plinth of magnificence on the basis of Dec-May last year was not just his class on the ball but the sheer amount of graft he put it.

    There is considerable graft demanded in every role in a top football team, it is not something that is continually admired when watching Barcelona, the fact that they put in as much work when they don’t have the ball as they do when they do have it.

    But come on, Arshavin, cards on the table. Lovely player, grafter?

    Surely you must have alarm bells going off in the old head about his inability to nail down a place in the side and the manner in which he was allowed to go in February.

  89. SUR the Malaga daily paper just announced that Cazorla did not train with the team this morning as the club has given him permission to travel to London to tie up his move to AFC

  90. This is Arsene Wenger, step away from the pie, i repeat, step away from the pie!

    You’ll know who am talking about.

  91. Dex – Yeah, I agree with all of that. I was just saying that I don’t see it in our current formation. And AW rarely changes our setup. The ironic thing is that if we do change the setup to accomodate a forward in that position, we already have the perfect player for that position. Dropping RvP slightly back behind another goalscorer would have been perfect IMO.

  92. Smith caught out! But bowler hits stumps at the other end and called a dead ball – highly controversial! Not out! The fourth time the bowler has hit stumps at the bowler’s end but the FIRST time it was called a dead ball. Looks like we have the cricketing equivalent of Phat Phil umpiring for us …

    Where’s SA Gunner when you need him!?

  93. That was a strange call by the umpire, Andrew.

    Finn always does that. Never seen it called as a ‘no ball’ before.

  94. Dexter | August 2, 2012 at 11:31 am

    No anger in my post whatsoever and I totally stand by the comment. I enjoyed the handbags yesterday for a change of pace but it was very much a one off. I don’t normally get wound up by anything let alone a game. Lack of football is getting to me tho.

    Yeah, so Arshavin has played centrally for us, but it was as a centre forward for an extended period when the others were crocked. Attacking midfielders do not have an easy time of it. Any player who comes here with that assumption will find themselves on the bench before long. This the Premier league.

  95. No, nor me Bob – bizarre; are you allowed to make the rules up as you go along?

  96. Eh, Steve and Dexter making some good points, but i’m going with steve.

    If we succeed in buying Cazorla, i doubt we would be having this arguement in a month’s time.

  97. haha jonny – check this out, especially the bit about judging people by what newspapers they read:

  98. Steve;

    I agree with most of that post, BUT, I wasnt even referring to Arshavin in that instance, more a general analysis of the 2 positions.

  99. I’m sure we are going round in circles on this one, with those who want AA out determined that he can’t play in the midfield role.

    I accept that defensively he is lacking and that on the wing he has been a bit hit and miss.

    In the formation we played last season we have usually played three midfielders; a ball carrier, a passer and a DM. The player we had missing for the first half of last season was the ball carrier until Rosicky took up the role half way through the season. Until that point we had generally been using Ramsey in the ball carrier role and that’s just not him (he’s the passer, same as Arteta). I want to see more of Ramsey in the passing role, when he is leading the charge as ball carrier he tends to slow play down as he is not quite sure what to do.

    Wilshere, Diaby and Ox all like to run with the ball so any of them could step into the ball carrier role as well. For the start of the season we are without Wilshere and Rosicky which leaves us with only Diaby (just back from long term injury) or Ox (fairly inexperienced still) to start in the ball carrier role. Perhaps Cazorla will change that, but he will be yet another player with no experience in the Prem who AW is likely to want to bring in slowly (as he does with Podolski and Giroud).

    AA is also a ball carrier who likes to run at defences, but it is easier to close down a ball carrier coming in from the wing than one coming in from the middle of the park. AA is not in the last season of his contract, so we could keep him until January (for those who really want him out) as an additional weapon in the middle of the field. If it doesn’t work then he goes in January and I accept that he just didn’t quite hit the heights I hoped he would at Arsenal. But at worst he is going to be putting himself in the shop window and I’m sure he would prefer to do that in the middle of the park than on the wing.

  100. Apparently so, Andrew.

    Very tough on England.

  101. Same here Andy, although he probably sees himself as the main striker now!

    Khali; Arshavin is gone, it wasnt about him! More the role of a CAM vs wide player.


    Cool man, glad to know. Agree what you say.

  102. Vermaelean, captain? Looks like Wenger has made his decision, that is if we’re going by the asian tour.

  103. Very unusual to have the rules of cricket applied so inconsistently; it’s almost like watching football, you wonder what will happen next!

  104. khalifha – That would make sense. He was the vice captain last year so it would be the natural thing to do. Unless RvP stays of course, and then the manager has a big decision to make.

  105. Just got a silver in the rowing, pipped by South Africa

  106. Dexter, then all i have to say is …. Oops!

    GA, that would seem pretty straightforward unless you consider the fact that we have a BFG on the bench and some people don’t think Verm should be first choice – I have to admit i like the idea of Mertersacker and Koscielny as our First choice CB pairing but Verm increases our goalscoring ability when he is on the pitch.

    And did i mention Mert is 6’6, i kid you not.

  107. A perfectly fair decision but remarkable timing.

    Not a no ball BTW but a dead ball.

    It’s stupid that The Finniphant is STILL doing this!

    I can see big trouble ahead if we go wicketless this session. 😦

  108. The Arsenal blogosphere is filled with electricity and much welcomed.

    The teamed achieved their best performances with the mid-field of Tomas, Arteta, and Song. An absence of one…….loss of consistency.

    Adding experienced VERSATILE talent (especially in midfield) gives our performances missing consistency and much needed rotation.

    It appears that Arsene is back to his early seasons with the club……..adding the right seasoned talent.

    Hopefully the dust will settle shortly and we can start real speculation for roles.

    Good read YW. Thanks again

  109. pedantic george

    “khalifha | August 2, 2012 at 11:47 am
    Eh, i think we can all agree that AA is not suited to the premier league, he is extremely talented but he doesn’t have the fitness and stamina to cope with the pace of the league.”

    I think you will find that “ALL” of us most certainly do not agree.
    Arshavin is by a distance our most creative player .And as Dexter points out .a slight tweak to the system would be required to accommodate him in the AM position.
    Rosicky and Arshavin are the best and first choice (also captains)for great footballing countries.For us not to include them in our team is a bit silly.

  110. khalifha – Yeah possibly. AW has a bid decision to make on the CB pairing. Last season all 3 missed differnt parts so he was not faced with chossing between them too often.

    I think Tv5 and Koscienly are the better players, but the best players don’t always have the right mix. Mertesacker and Koscienly looked pretty good together. Personally I think AW will start with Koscienly and TV5. Despite his errors, I think TV5 will always start if fit.

  111. Now Grahame Smith has had a perfectly good boundary marked down due to the now suddenly automatic deadballing that’s suddenly been adopted by this umpire.

    Perfectly fair, Jonny – you sure?

  112. You’re usually more circumspect YW, so I am thinking Cazorla’s done, Santi came early this year. I know the play on words excite you, me too. But yesterday’s … um … song?

  113. Yes thanks AA – perfectly fair: in terms of the rulebook.

    The consistency of it’s application is far from perfect however.

    Watching Smith bat is awful. He has three shots and he knows how to use them. Zzzzzzz.

  114. Didn’t we have our best defensive spell in recent memory with Koscielny and Djourou as the back pairing?

    Any combination of the four suits me but we could do with more depth at full-back.

  115. Markus – I would agree with that. There are no worries about Sagna, but Jenksinson is stilly really really raw (as you would expect) and I would worry if he had to play for too long.

    For me left back is the worry. Gibbs is OK, but I have never been really sold on him being our 1st choice left back if I am honest. Santos is great, but I do think he will cost us goals at the back. Great player to watch going forward though.

    I hope we start the season with Santos, but would be more than happy if we brought another left back in. Not that I think we will.

  116. Confirmed that Carzola was missing from Malaga training this morning with permission from the club. Sounds promising. I would imagine that there are hacks at all of the major airports so if he arrives in the UK it would not take long for word to spread.

  117. pedantic george

    ESPN Soccernet ‏@ESPNSoccernet
    Barcelona midfielder Sergio Busquets says he would welcome a move for Arsenal’s Alex Song by the Catalan club –

    Oh FFS ,Here we fucking go.

  118. And I would welcome a full all over body massage by a throng of Swedish lovely’s. But that ain’t gonna happen either.

  119. Pure class, Barca, pure class.

  120. “khalifha | August 2, 2012 at 11:47 am
    Eh, i think we can all agree that AAis not suited to the premier league, he is extremely talented but he doesn’t have the fitness and stamina to cope with the pace of the league.”

    I think you will find that “ALL” of us most certainly do not agree.
    Arshavin is by a distance our most creative player

    PG, who’s this ‘all’ you speak of? I demand to know him, or her.Besides, what don’t you, i mean ‘all’ agree with? Arshavin is not suited to the Epl?, AA is extremely talented? AA does not have the fitness or stamina to cope with the pace of the league?

    ”And as Dexter points out .a slight tweak to the system would be required to accommodate him in the AM position” – In order for him not to work as hard as his teammates right? I mean this is Arshavin we’re talking about, lets find a way to accomodate him in the team.

    ”Rosicky and Arshavin are the best and first choice (also captains)for great footballing countries.For us not to include them in our team is a bit silly”.

    What i find silly is AA’s waistline, am no fitness guru myself but it seems to me that the only way AW can get Arshavin fit is giving him a reward of doughnuts for every pound lost – he is partly to blame for his loss of form, just saying.

  121. goonerandy there is already a photo circulating in facebook of carzola at an Airport,either way I’m not taking it seriously until the club confirms the signing.

  122. “khalifha | August 2, 2012 at 11:47 am
    Eh, i think we can all agree that AAis not suited to the premier league, he is extremely talented but he doesn’t have the fitness and stamina to cope with the pace of the league.”

    I think you will find that “ALL” of us most certainly do not agree.
    Arshavin is by a distance our most creative player

    PG, who’s this ‘all’ you speak of? I demand to know him, or her.Besides, what don’t you, i mean ‘all’ agree with? Arshavin is not suited to the Epl?, AA is extremely talented? AA does not have the fitness or stamina to cope with the pace of the league?

    ”And as Dexter points out .a slight tweak to the system would be required to accommodate him in the AM position” – In order for him not to work as hard as his teammates right? I mean this is Arshavin we’re talking about, lets find a way to accomodate him in the team.

    ”Rosicky and Arshavin are the best and first choice (also captains)for great footballing countries.For us not to include them in our team is a bit silly”.

    What i find silly is AA’s waistline, am no fitness guru myself but it seems to me that the only way AW can get Arshavin fit is giving him a reward of doughnuts for every pound lost – he is partly to blame for his loss of form, just saying.

  123. Firstlady – Excellent stuff. That said, I am doing the same as yourself. We have had our fingers burned so often geting carried away.

  124. Oooh Dex @ 11:41………Rossi @ 7-8m is a steal albeit a risk given his injury record.
    If it were my decision you know I’d go for it…micromanage his time over 2 years (he’s 25), then free his world class ass on the “enemy”….
    his salary would be custom-fitted for whats best for both parties….

    Hell yeah!

  125. George @ 12:30

    I have heard some decent arguments for and against players being in the starting 11 but that takes the biscuit.

  126. >great footballing countries

    Jesus, George, it’s a bit early to be hitting the sauce.

  127. Hmm, just a thought but what if Sahin is a replacement for Song? Maybe, just maybe he has said to Arsenal that we are not aware of? IT is just a thought not based on fact, but I cannot see why we would be after Sahin and Cazorla.

  128. I agree with George @ 12:30,
    the best managers are flexible enough to accommodate great players.

    AC Milan have done it superbly over the years with the likes of Inzaghi, Maldini, Seerdorf, Ambrosini, Gattuso all retained beyond their sell-buy dates..

    Man U are doing it with Giggs & Scholes..

    I just don’t see the big deal…c’mon we retained TR7 for 3 years…injuries & all

    AA got so frustrated over time with the sheer scale of inexperience around him that he lost interest with being a winger. Yes, he’s not a grafter but why……..u know what I won’t bother anymore….

    AW makes the decisions.
    and I will always dig Andrei Arshavin.


  129. Terrible decision to bat today. Follow Steve Waugh’s advice 99% of the time I choose to bat first the other 1% I think about bowling and then choose to bat anyway.

  130. it was always going to be the time to worry when the transfermongers begin to focus on Song and Walcott. But then again, maybe not. I could always watch the cricket. Or listen to it seeing as I have to work.

  131. just as I dig G.Rossi, C.Tevez, H.Rodallega, A.Hleb, J.Reyes, Adrian Lopez, Berbatov, V.Moses, Arda Turan, etc….though they’d probably never be gunners.

  132. corr: though they’d probably never be gunners, again or anew.

  133. Aman, why should Wenger find a way to include AA in the team?

  134. Things to like about the potential signing of Cazorla…

    Can play in all midfield positions
    Moves the ball well
    Is very quick
    Can shoot with either foot, including free kicks

    9 goals and 5 assists last term

  135. will Lansbury get a chance now?

  136. do we look with the 25-man rule?

  137. GAndy & Dex
    Interesting thread above on the old midfield mix.
    I’ve been confused by many of Stuart Pearce’s selections and non selections over the last few years. Who could forget the tragic D**M of Mancienne. Pearce has not it seems. So he dumped his old D**Mers and has placed his hopes with a trinity of Allen, Cleverly & Giggs/Rambo.
    I don’t know about anyone else, but I know where I first saw this kind of set up. It’s nice (for AFC) to have different players who can add something different to the three: options of Diaby, Rambo, quite a few others and maybe more.

  138. Yes, surprising decision to bat first – can only assume they got their fingers burnt at the Oval last week where batting first led to a torrid opening couple of sessions for the English batsmen.


    I think there are plenty of observers who would be happy to see Arshavin continue his career at AFC, including me. Anyone who saw his opening game in the Euros could see a role for the guy in North London.

    Things are rarely as black and white as you’d like to think Khalifha.

  139. Sorry Jonny – surprising decision to NOT bat first!

  140. Aman, I thought Lansbury looked good in the 45 min games this pre-season but then he got hurt. I am not convinced he’ll be given a chance at this point. It seems Arsenal are chasing players now with versatility in playable positions. This can be seen in both Podolski and “potentially” Cazorla.

    I am not saying it is fair to lansvury, but I have to suspect Arsenal are going to look to ship him out.

  141. Another great post yogi

    Exciting times right now. I know that we should not get fired up about a potential signing until it actually happens, but what fun is that? On top of the fact that we need a CAM the other exciting thing is the implication that the club finally feels safe to take off the financial handbrake. Cazorla would make $40M spent without ant significant money coming back yet. I am not sure what has changed but may be all of our whining and complaining about silent Stanley was wrong. I will joyfully eat all my words bow towards his offices in Denver Colorado. Who needs fat Uzbeks anyway. Go Arsene, Go Ivan, go Stan.

  142. Finsbury – We have great options in midfield. More than most in the league.

  143. The 25 man squad rule shouldn’t be an issue for us this term, after all we have the 8 homegrown players (per the definition) and of course you are able to have as many under 21 players as you like in the squad. 2 new players in so far, potentially 2 more and you can now expect some departures as the season draws closer.

  144. I think this England team may be past it’s best. The effort of getting to the top has not been matched by keeping us there.

    Too many players off the boil or…

  145. Of all the potential players leaving I would have thought Bendtner would have been on his bike already. The lad had a good Euro 2012, yes, he has an attitude problem but in todays game so many footballers do.

  146. Don’t think it’s helped that the playing schedule has been absolute rubbish this summer, Bob.

  147. Musical Thursdays!

    This one goes out to all those canny AFC scouts and negotiators… you crack me up you sly old dogs…

  148. Right, that’s it.

    Can’t stand the cricket anymore, or the BBC or the Cazorla stuff.

    I’m going to make some piccalilli.

  149. pedantic george

    Yogi ,They are just as “great” as England .At least they entertain and play decent stuff.

    khalifha | August 2, 2012 at 1:57 pm
    Aman, why should Wenger find a way to include AA in the team?

    Because he is the most talented player we have.I would have thought that should at least be taken into account.

  150. Send me a jar, Bob!

  151. I love piccalilli.

    Watch the women’s judo final first though, Cb. Gemma Gibbobs, OneOfUs’ mate is in it…

  152. Gemma Gibbons taking the stage in the Judo semis … our biggest fight for 12 years.

  153. Fuck me, actually – I’ve just seen her opponent… Christ… RUN, GEMMA!

  154. Limpar – didn’t know One of Us knows her!

  155. A few too many players off the boil (all of the bowling unit!) but make no mistake this is an exceptionally good SA team.

    The last match was, to an extent, an aberration – how we managed to produce the worst kind of wicket for our own team I will never know (a sub-continent road, low and slow).

    As I type Smith gifts a wicket.

    Get Amla early and they could wobble alarmingly – SA have collapsing ability in extremis. Otherwise it’s could be a very looong day.

  156. It looks very tiring this judo malarkey.

  157. He was her sensai… taught her atop a mountain in a small wooden hut in Cambodia. Unconfirmed rumours of a red hot teacher-student tryst…

  158. another fantastical piece of ‘journalism’ by John Cross.

    In one article he’s given RVP’s shirt away twice, once to podolski,…. ‘Lukas Podolski is still TBC on the squad number list but is surely about to take van Persie’s ’10’ shirt.’

    and then later in the article he’s decided that Cazorla gets it…..’Cazorla will be offered a four year deal and is seen as being crucial playmaker in the number ten role for next season’s new look team.’

    I’ll have a pint of what he’s on!


  160. She used OneOfUs’ special move there… Never used it since they.. y’know… hurt too much. Needed to break it out there though.


  161. The only “journalist” worth reading was Hunter S Thompson. Pure genius.

  162. get in Ogogo!

  163. LOL, I didn’t teach her anything. We grew up at the same club – she’s a couple of years younger than me. I remember when she joined – and she was bloody strong even then! Used to win gold at every event – in training she had this grip over the top that was brutal and you couldn’t shake it. Not seen her for a few years now. So happy for her of course.

  164. Wow, one of the events of the whole Olympics – what a fight! Is that really true Limpar? Can’t actually tell if you are fibbing or not – I assume not!!

  165. Can’t understand why they are not interviewing her on tv – what a star!

  166. What annoys me about this hack journalism is the transparency of what it is. To respond to John’s erudite and informed opinions one needs to log in via FB therefore inviting all sorts of Daily Mirror advertising and trivia in.
    So sprouting sh*te is good business!… God help us

  167. So what’s the equivalent of what she’s done? Maybe it’s a bit like the 20th seed getting into the Wimbledon final, beating Federer and Djokovic along the way…

  168. Fell

    Before you respond to Cross probably best to read it again.

    In one case he is talking about a squad number, the other a specific role in the team. Confusing perhaps but not contradictory.

  169. Not enough when i think about it – a completely unseeded player.

  170. Missed that, Limpar!

    Upto my neck in Turmeric and vinegar.

    Always the mesiest pickle to make. Consolslel’s going to have conniptions when she sees her new yellow worktop.

  171. What time is the final – presume early evening? Really hope people get on board with this, will be one hell of a fight, what a trooper.

  172. Get the thick bleach from the toilet Bob works a charm on Turmeric.

    Amla’s out too.

    Kallis looking menacing.

    Up to my nuts in sport at the moment.

  173. Our moves in the transfer market blow RvP’s arguments about ambition out of the water. That said, he did not quite say “ambition”, rather the “future direction of the club”. It seems the direction is pretty good at the moment. however

    The stuff about his body language in training is just garbage though. Who makes this stuff up?

  174. the people filling their columns GA 🙂 agreed on the body language bollocks

  175. Haha, I’m sure it’ll be worth it, Cb. I read that as cornichons at first. Must be the context… What a pickle.

  176. If Andrei ever played centrally it probably was because he’d been deployed out left and drifted centrally and was too arsed to get back 😉

    After the EURO 2008 and before he was an Arsenal player Wenger stated he felt Arshavin was not suited for the English game’s physicality and pace. When he bought Arshavin he saw a role for him as an attacking winger not as a AMF. NOTHING/nada/zippo AA has done in the last 2 years should make Arsene have a change of mind.
    Our midfield would be overrun with AA in it. He doesn’t battle enough for the ball nor does he backtrack enough. The game is often won in the midfield battle. A battler he is not. Song, Rambo and Jack are the terriers AA wants controlling the center of the pitch. Andrei’s best role is to use his attacking brilliance on the flanks. Let the men win the center of the pitch so AA can weave his magic/pick a lock on the flanks. Yeah Andrei is a magician blah blah blah but his wand would be broken in the middle of the pitch. Arsene nows.

    Only the most deluded people here can envision AW playing AA in the middle.

  177. Cheers Steve, I agree, The problem lies in this form of journalism, statements without qualification,
    I know it’s not a given but the ‘best’ player usually wears the number 10. Podolski wore it at Koln and though Cazorla wore 12 at Malaga and 8 at Villarreal, if and I know it’s an ‘if’ he comes would he settle for Chamakh’s 29 or Parks 9 or would he want to pick his number? Assuming they go?

  178. Weather turning dodgy up at Headingly – anything could happen!

    Agree – finding all this tracking of the different sports events EXHAUSTING!

  179. Bleach. Excellent idea but as she was up half the night with some horrible bug that’s going around, all available supplies of bleach have been used.

  180. Pop quiz – here’s the scenario Arsenal complete new signings and RVP then decides to volte face and accept the original offer Arsenal made.

    If you were the manager would you

    a) accept gracefully but with fair warning that he would no longer be captain
    b) accept gracefully – wait until the ink was dry and then let him know he is no longer captain
    c) accept gracefully and allow him to continue as captain

    I’m betting Wenger would opt for c.

    I’m a fan of b myself.

  181. The collapse could be on! Great catch by Cookie.

  182. Great catch!

    Yes, c for me Jonny; we would be AWESOME with RvP, the current squad and the newbies that have come or appear to be coming our way.

  183. Jonny – As long as he still had the players behind him, I would go for C. End product is all that matters, and a settled RvP can only be good for the club. What an amazing forward line will will have should he stay.

  184. dexter 11.37

    can you please just grasp that we are poor defensively in part as we are shockingly bad at applying consistent pressure from forward areas. we can’t afford to be lazy there. it takes a very simple ball over the top to cause serious trouble to us as it would Any team playing such a high line . the difference is the teams who don’t concede a quite incredible 49 in 38 dont allow the opposition any time to play these balls and if there isn’t pressure on the ball the team collectively drops.

  185. Clerkenwell Gooner

    While we wait for the Santi pause to be over (great news he wasn’t at training), I’ve been thinking about the closing ceremony, and the poor bastard who has to follow Danny Boyle.

    So far this is what I’ve got:

    It starts with Karl Marx/Fred Engels in a pastoral picnicking scene on Hampstead Heath (because IRL they did), then Karl skateboards down to the British Museum Reading Room (where he spent half his life researching his one or two, er, influential books).

    The librarians are played by thousands of actual librarians who have just lost their jobs, dressed as ballroom dancers from Strictly; they do formation waltzing as Bob Crowe, in the role of Chief Librarian, intones The Jabberwocky in protest at the cuts.

    Continuing Mr Rascal’s Bonkers theme from the opening night, Madness come on and perform Madness, followed by Night Boat to Rio.

    Then Florence & the [Time] Machine sings a mournful cover of Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now as Dr Who departs in the Tardis to actual Brazil in actual 2016 for the handover.

    The Stones re-form, with a guest spot from Capt Jack Sparrow on guitar, for a rendition of It’s All Over Now (50 years in showbiz – nearly as long as the Queen), and it’s a wrap.

    Whaddya think? Is it a goer? (Note if the Tories had got hold of this, the opening night would have been Phil Collins, Andrew Lloyd-Webber and Cliff. Be thankful for huge mercies.)

    Also, so glad to see the Arsenal Ladies in Team GB dish it out to the female Messi and her mates in their 1-0 victory over Brazil in front of a vast 70,000 crowd at Wembley. The women’s game has really arrived. Would love to see the Arsenal Ladies allowed to play some of their fixtures at the Arsenal stadium, say, mid-week.

    Also, fuck off Biscuits. Alex Song is ours.

  186. I’d opt for C as well. The players seem to universally acclaim his leadership skills. He appears well liked. By signing he doesn’t lose face since his rationale for wanting away was his perception of the team’s lack of ambition.

    But really none of us know the locker room dynamics, the cliques, the inter-relationships of the players as well as Wenger.
    So what is the point of resigning a captain who was hailed as the first real inspirational captain in a long time only to admonish him by taking the captaincy away from him? that’s a rather risky and provocative petty action. A few well placed words in private is probably the better route and probably the Wenger way.

  187. pedantic george

    “Only the most deluded people here can envision AW playing AA in the middle.”

    And people accuse me of picking fights!

  188. pedantic george

    When Arshavin signed he was asked “why have many players in his mould ?”
    AW”Yes we do.but he is better.”

  189. Jonny

    d) Tell him the original offer expired on July 31 and offer him less.

    We’re not fucking mugs, he was to be offered the best deal in the history of the club by all accounts yet according to him he wasn’t even willing to discuss it. Now that the Manc clubs are doubting his value he comes running back to us.

    He wants out. Not sure why people are still struggling with that fundamental concept. He has openly and publicly gone head to head with Wenger.

    Some chaps on here appear to have very short memories, 4-5 weeks or less. Funny now to recall the outburst of anger at the time and now he’s being welcomed back into the fold retaining his captaincy, the leader of the side as such.

    Never let it be said that football fans are fickle.

  190. pedantic george

    I think as Steve does on RVP .

  191. George – The AA we have now is not the AA that we signed. Whilst never a massive grafter, he normally left his imprint on a game so was given more leway. The last year or so has not really seen him do that, so his flaws are more highlighted.

    That is my take on the situation anyway. I like him, but he was increasingly frustrating to watch. Now he has plenty of competition for his place, so if he does get a chance I really hope he takes it as his margin for error is now even less.

  192. Steve – But football fans are fickle. And ultimately we want to put out the best team possible. And there is no doubt that RvP would be in that team. If he does a u-turn, we should grab it knowing that we are not as relient on him as we were last season.

  193. Steve – I’ve been arguing all summer we shouldn’t assume RvP has gone, he’s never stopped being our captain, he’s never publicly said he wanted to leave. He HAS said he has a problem with the direction of the club but didn’t deign to explain what that meant.

    How do you know what he’s been offered? How do you know he what he’s been willing to discuss. Or not.

    We’re a far more dangerous side with him in than with him out, and that’s the bottom line as far as I’m concerned.

    He’s not gone yet.

  194. AA – “he’s never publicly said he wanted to leave”

    Well, he has said he has no intention of staying beyond next season which is pretty much saying he wants out.

  195. Ooh, volleyball’s on everyone, volleyball!

  196. pedantic george

    “We’re a far more dangerous side with him in than with him out, and that’s the bottom line as far as I’m concerned.”
    Andrew .This is the hub of the problem.Do we accept his betrayal because of his value on the field?
    I do however find it disturbing that my opinion id the polar opposite of people who I am in the habit of being in full agreement with.That ,for me ,is another thing RVP has caused that I find unacceptable.

  197. “Of all the potential players leaving I would have thought Bendtner would have been on his bike already..”

    His bike? He hasn’t been able to replace his smashed up Aston Martin yet? Maybe i was wrong about his wages..;)

  198. George – Yes we do. We are not the bastions and moral keepers of all that is good in the game. We are top level football club. We should be keeping our best players.

  199. Andy

    Yes of course we want to put the best team out but even without van Persie we would have an excellent team, who knows if all these transfer rumours come to fruition.

    Better with him, possibly so, yes probably so. It’s an intangible all the same, a team next season with new players such as Podolski, Giroud and let’s suggest Carzola just for the fun of it could be even better than last season. Less reliant on one man. There is then the hoped for improvement from other players now one year wiser.

    Will he have the season of his life again? I personally doubt it as last season was quite simply an extraordinary personal feat.

    I remember one summer when Ferguson bombed out Kanchelskis, Ince and somebody else, can’t remember who. Fans were up in arms. Think they might have done quite well the following season. Our prospects next season are not defined by the presence of 1 man unless than man is French and the manager.

    Basically put – and from a personal point of view only – his presence next season doesn’t make a jot of difference to my support. I still think we will have a good season without him.


    “How do you know he what he’s been willing to discuss. Or not.”

    ‘As announced earlier this year I had a meeting with the boss and Mr Gazidis after the season. This was a meeting about the club’s future strategy and their policy. Financial terms or a contract have not been discussed, since that is not my priority at all.”

    Note the last sentence. His statement.

  200. If RvP stays, I could not care less if he bums sheep in his spare time as long as he scores plenty of goals. Everything does not have to be hunky dory in order for a team to suceed. If he does not agree with the clubs future, that is his issue. As long as he does his job, I don’t really care.

  201. Andy

    “We are not the bastions and moral keepers of all that is good in the game.”

    We are The Arsenal, a club that does things properly etc …

    Is that one of the very things that lots of fans like to cling to us being?

  202. Steve – Yeah, I agree with all of that. And I do think we will have a good season. However, having somebody like him in the team could be the difference between having a good season, and have a winning season.

  203. Steve – Yeah, we do look to do things “the proper way”. But lets not kid ourselves, be are no angels either when it comes to transfers. No clubs are. And in the case of our players we should be aiming to keep the best ones; not cutting our nost off to spite our face.

  204. Victoria Pendletons thighs!…. World record breaking!

  205. “George – The AA we have now is not the AA that we signed.”

    AA is 31 years old now and perennially out of shape. Not the type of person I would build the team around in the center of the pitch. Arsene knows.
    Andrei is an exceptional talent and could be. hell he SHOULD be an incredibly effective player even on the wing…if he wants to be.

  206. Anyway, off home.

    Laters 🙂

  207. pedantic george

    Philmar.I hope you took no offence at my little joke with Yogi yesterday.I do not think you are anything other than a very good contributor to the site.I don’t have to agree with you to like you.

  208. Rumours are heating up Cazorla allegedly at Colney now.

  209. Malaga’s website’s crashed! haha!

  210. I would be very disappointed if Robin ends up staying captain if we end up retaining him, no matter if he signs the contract that’s on offer or wipes his arse with it. He has publicly insulted the club with his statement and I sincerely hope that we have a bit more integrity than that. I can envision it happening, but we are the Arsenal and I would expect better from us.

  211. I’m with you Evil – however I think Arsene’s past form with captaincy is a clue to future behaviour – if such an opportunity were to present itself. I cede however that I suspect it is a moot point and that he is most likely going to deprive Wenger of such a headache.

    The thing is that if we do sign Cazorla & Sahin and RVP STILL wants out then his statement will have been stripped naked and exposed for the epic mountain of bullshit we all suspected but wanted to deny.

  212. pedantic george

    Jonny .I never wanted to deny it .I have said so from the off.

  213. remember this:

    Diaby’s going nowhere!
    Diaby’s going nowhere!
    Diaby’s going nowhere!

    …well, to those who consider(ed) him “deadwood”
    AW is loyal to those he rates!

    we’ll see about AA.

    for now we wait to welcome Santi.

    ..poor guy, the hype is tremendous

  214. The Sahin loan deal makes sense if Wenger is concerned about the fitness of Jack. It means he won’t have to rush him back if he has a ‘like for like’ player in Sahin next season. It gives the lad from Madrid an opportunity to get his career back on track at a top club as well! This is prob why the deal stalled because of debate over making it a permanent move!

    If Robin is set on leaving and we can get 20 -30 million for him, why not use that money and invest it in Martinez?! Think his buy out is about 33-34 million from Bilbao. At only 23 he’s regarded as the best DM in the world and would put all that m’vila/biglia debate to bed! He’s also just as comfortable filling in at centre back as well! Initially I thought we should invest in a striker if Robin leaves but we’ve already signed 2 plus we’ll hopefully still get Niang. I think Theo, Cazorla and Podolski will hit double figures this season and hopefully Giroud will settle in quickly too!

    What a statement of intent that would be to land Martinez from under the nose of Barca! COYG!

  215. I guess I did George. Guess I fucked up. Came here hoping to exchange opinions on the team and ended embroiled in pedantry and semantics. So after your message I realised I was wasting my time and pissed off. Sorry if my retort was hurtful in any way.
    Thanks for the photos links Aman yesterday it was a good segue from our pointless bickering.. I guess I was rude to you as well. Sorry.

  216. Jonny | August 2, 2012 at 3:25 pm

    To play devils advocate for a moment I notice that all your options begin with “Accept gracefully”. I (mostly) agree with George and Steve on RVP doing a U-Turn.

  217. Epic amount of bullshit or whatever the undeniable fact is that he wants to leave so bye-bye, good luck, adios etc. Thanks for the goals.

    Players leave football clubs, it happens. It is not the end of the world.

    Anybody foolish enough to worship a footballer will quickly forget him and just worship the next one in through the door.

  218. pedantic george

    Philmar .No problem here.

  219. ” Diaby’s going nowhere! ”
    Oh my, what did he break now? 😉

  220. pedantic george

    Well you say that Steve ,but all my shirts still have Bergkamp 10 on the back.Some heroes endure.

  221. s’all good philmar…
    did the training pictures have that calming effect on you too?

    Arsene knows…

  222. Yes there are other options than the ones I outlined. Well spotted. 😛

  223. “If Robin is set on leaving and we can get 20 -30 million for him, why not use that money and invest it in Martinez? ”

    Does Martinez want to be in Stoke on a cold February night?

  224. This whole RvP issue seems to have polarised views like no other, in my memory, at least. People who don’t normally fall out seem no longer to be talking to one another, and other, more unlikely ‘alliances’ have emerged. One or two valued long-term contributors appear to have ceased posting altogether.

    As has been suggested before, the episode goes right down to the heart of what it means to be a supporter – terms like betrayal have been the milder of the descriptors employed when discussing the team captain.

    I DO think RvP is getting something of a backlash of several seasons’ of loss of some of our best players and the degree of emotion attached to one who has ‘merely’ gone public on his intention to not re-sign has been sizeable, but hardly surprising.

    Ultimately until we find out exactly what has been said and what the real motives behind the various developments are then no doubt the debates will continue.

    That all said, I REALLY hope he stays. I don’t believe AW attaches huge import to the role of captain so I wouldn’t anticipate a change there should he stay on. We will be a hugely feared team regardless.

    Fundamentally though, this side, that has been hewn, against all the odds out of financial adversity and the disappointment of departing favourites into a side capable of becoming world class.

    It will be THE one everybody is watching over the next ten months.

    And I don’t expect them to disappoint.

  225. ” Diaby’s going nowhere! ”
    might have been before your time, philmar.

    it came after the Arsene, TR & AA ones…last season was full-scale WAR!

    I can never forgive Cesc & Nasri for this…and Steve, its not about “worship”, more about “respect”.

  226. “did the training pictures have that calming effect on you too?”

    I thought they did…but then I saw misinterpreted george’s joke and decided to go kick a neighbour’s cat instead. Luckily the thing is smarter/faster than me.

  227. always dig your summaries aa, so on point.

    “We will be a hugely feared team regardless.
    Fundamentally though, this side, that has been hewn, against all the odds out of financial adversity and the disappointment of departing favourites into a side capable of becoming world class.
    It will be THE one everybody is watching over the next ten months.
    And I don’t expect them to disappoint”.

    …whoah, Nostrathymus just took off his toupee and is dancing and swirling it in the air…
    good times..
    purple double!!

  228. Stevek, sorry to disappoint you but even if Arsenal signed Martinez in my dream i wouldn’t believe it, not in a million years.
    To be honest i’ve long forgotten about Niang.

  229. Well said – as usual – Andrew. It has been downright weird watching the fallout.

    I have to say I am torn and almost have a foot in both camps – mostly I do want him to stay though I completely understand why some feel as they do.

    Spot on regards the backlash – the other thing which I feel has concentrated the sense of betrayal is the fact that the club stuck by him for so long and all indications were that he was grateful for this and wanted to stay. The lack of gratitude is galling.

  230. Aman, that respect you mention has to go both ways.

  231. BTW the umpire had told Finn the next time he knocked the stumps over it would be called dead. Can’t say he wasn’t warned!

  232. Cheers Jonny.

    That’s the bigger puzzle, really – why Finn persists in knocking over the stumps! But they should just make it a rule that the ball automatically goes dead (or called a no-ball?!) in that situation, not leave it to the poor old umpire to interprete the existing regs on the day.

    Digging Aman’s purple double, too!!

  233. Hope there is no problem if I leave this here.

  234. for those who think money grows on trees…..

    even “when” it does you still have to take care of the tree.

    maybe the sheikh got tired of oranges and now has a thing for bananas…purple bananas!!!!


  235. Sitting on a balcony 20 floors up having lunch and reading the world’s greatest blog. To the right, about 30 blocks north, is the Empire State building and to the left, about 20 blocks south, is the new Freedom Tower. Blue skies all around and views all the way out to New Jersey. Having a nice ice cold cider, a quick smoke, really tasty pastrami sandwich from Katz’s deli, it really does not get much better than this 🙂

    Well, maybe if we do end up signing Cazorla it will……

  236. I didn’t think you were allowed to smoke in NYC anymore Irish!

    Have a cider on me – great picture you’ve painted of my 2nd favourite city!

  237. It’s amazing what you can get away with when you are so high up!! 🙂

  238. YESSS!!!!
    From Sky –
    Spain midfielder Santiago #Cazorla, 27, reveals on his Twitter account that he has left Malaga and signed for #Arsenal.

  239. If RVP is willing to sign a new contract and play as hard as he ever has then he should be welcomed back with open arms and still be captain. If he stays but does not re sign a new contract then we need a different captain.

  240. Sounds nice irishgray – Do you have unobstructed views of both towers from your 20th floor balcony? When in NYC I like to have lunch/breakfast in the Brooklyn Heights park facing west (just south of Dumbo) – it’s still in the shade at that time – great views as well.

  241. pedantic george

    Bill ,Why? Will he somehow not have released that statement?.
    I am afraid my arms are folded.

  242. Getting closer … when will AFC likely confirm?

  243. Hmm not quite convinced by that Twitter account. Also nothing yet on Sky Sports proper.

    As we know best to wait until the club confirms.


  244. Folded George, or just in your pockets …

  245. Jonny @ 6:07:


    I am never going to question Dexter again. (until the next time he says something dumb).

  246. Your hands, not your arms, obviously.

  247. George:

    I just want the team to win and I am willing to throw righteous indignation into the crapper if it will help the team The guy is a true world class player no matter whose definition you use and IMO one of the top 3 goal scorers in the world last year. Having him in the squad completely changes how this season plays out and allows our new guys to acclimate at a much more realistic pace. He was a fantastic captain last season and no reason to think he can’t be the same. Obviously the caveat is I don’t know all the dirty details but for me him signing a new contract would be more then enough of an apology.

  248. we are less than 24 hours away from forgetting Samri ever played for us.
    ..forgetting Cesc might take a little longer….maybe one season

    Robin’s got a decision to make if he hasn’t done so already.
    I already see him in black & white though I know he’d look better in purple-double!

  249. Jonny

    I heard it’s a fake account but not to sure.

  250. The fact that RVP released that statement in the midst of one of our most promising summer transfer windows in recent memory makes him look even more foolish than he could have imagined.

    I am incredibly excited about the possibilites we will have this year assuming this Cazorla deal gets finalized. We will definitely be in contention for the most dynamic midfield in world football.

    If we can get Diaby firing on all cylinders, alongside Song-inho, Arteta, Wilshere, and/or Cazorla, we will be passing circles around the opposition for fun. Exciting times ahead!

  251. Sorry ignore last link – this video

  252. There is always the possibility that Man Shitty can’t come calling for RvP if they can’t make space by find homes for a couple of their deadwood strikers. Manure’s financial problems may prevent them from making a decent bid (and RvP isn’t a youthful player with sell-on possibilities – the new Manure policy). Who knows how Conte’s scandal will affect Juve’s signings. So there is the possibility that RvP could sign on for an additional year.
    That gives him a bit of security in case he is injured and that retains his sell on value for the team.

  253. I might have missed it but I am suprised that no one is excited about Ramsey….think he is looking great in Team GB and will be strong competition for the other midfielders that people are getting excited about

  254. Damn Roo…I always forget about Ramsey, and I really shouldn’t! He always seems to shine during international play, but seems a lot less confident when wearing the red and white. If he fulfills his potential we are going to have some serious selection headaches.

  255. c’mon Robin, why put Shaqeel through all that?
    having to make new friends…
    learn another language….??

  256. I like that scenario Philmar…I think all parties involved would benefit.

  257. Please ignore….bookmark for Safari to avoid scrolling down on refresh…

  258. Philmar – I have a totally unobstructed view of the Empire State and the Freedom tower (almost every NYer I know hates that fucking name!!!!) I like DUMBO (District Under Manhattan Bridge for those of you who have never been) very hip area. I used to hang out there years ago when I lived in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Still one of the few places where you can grab an all-night rave in NYC.

    Awesome news on Cazorla 🙂

  259. Diaby – ‘“Mikel is a great player and he showed last season that he is a very important player in our team.” Diaby told Arsenal Player. “I am looking forward to playing next to him.

    “I personally prefer to play with three midfielders because I can go forward and I can also defend. I think it is the position that will suit me the best.

    “Of course the midfield is different now because we are all different. The most important thing is to bring out singularities into the team to make it better. If we have a mix of all that it can be a very good thing.”

    Diaby was restricted to just five substitute appearances in all competitions last season and the midfielder admits his spell on the sidelines took its toll.

    “First of all it does affect you physically because you cannot play,” he said. “And I have to say mentally as well because it is hard.

    “The only thing we love is to play football and seeing your team-mates play every weekend while you are on the bench is quite hard.”

    Fuck, I am getting very excited about this season!!

  260. Just got a text from a fellow Gooner wanting to know when the CL fixtures will be announced, anyone know?

  261. Jonny @3:25…Your options regarding the Van persie entanglement is interesting to say the least. Wenger is not a man to hold a grudge and his stance towards Van persie in the past been has been to provide fatherly advice. I cannot see Wenger doing anything other than perhaps a mild chiding of the player on the effects of his comments on the team and fan base. ” Don’t forget you are a player that we have supported through many years of injury and some would say that you owe a debt of gratitude towards Arsenal Football Club. If you wish to stay with us then I think you should make a public statement to correct what the fans have heard. Then you can continue as you were before, the captain.”

  262. RVP was Vice-Captain when Cesc was still with us. After what has happened, I could easily see him returning to that role (if he stays, which I doubt) as the club could at least put a spin on that. Let’s face it this time last year he was the best candidate.

  263. I know I will never win any awards for cinematography or voiceovers (sorry completely forgot sound was on!!) but here’s the view from the apartment I am working on.

  264. The irony, that Arsenal may get a player from a club that was not run properly.

    Is RVP still around?

  265. I say, fuck RVP.

    I could never stand disloyalty.

    If you don’t like something, then leave. It’s not as if Arsene’s been buggering the ballboys.

    Has he??!!

  266. If people start giving VP credit for any signings we make I’m liable to get wound up again and twice in two days is far too much so think on.

  267. I could see that happening. It’s the world today.

  268. RVP cannot remain the captain because it has been a position that has been unstable. The Captain should be someone that wants to stick around. Cesc was captain and punked out, we don’t need to go through that again.

    If he stays so be it; I hope he follows up with another one of his agents statements, that can hopefully sway the support back in his corner.

  269. Yes, Mr Bob. Though many have tried to speculate as to why he did what he did, the fact remains that he threw the whole organization under the bus.
    Greater players than him have played at Arsenal and they never did that. His head may have gotten a little too big.

  270. totally agree – VP has lost all respect; has shown his true colours and just wish he’d go away. Even to Oil City, just so he could feel the HATRED and DISGUST a la Na$ri. It’s very similar to a GF sleeping with your [insert nightmare scenario]. Don’t want him around; don’t think he’ll be anything but a bad vibration within the club, and the words ‘loyalty’ and ‘respect’ are alien to the greying prick. Bye!!!!

  271. I agree, Paul.

    We move on.

  272. Moving on, Mr. Bob.

  273. Nice and easy, Paul.

  274. On the other hand, I believe Arsenal have handled the situation with class.

  275. Yes.

    Either you swallow the idiocy about how we should have ‘rewarded’ RVP, or you realise the reality of the situation and if we emerge stronger from the melee.

    For me, it’s the latter.

    It’s RVP who looks small in this.

  276. Notoverthehill

    Consolsbob @ 19.48, that comment is completely unacceptable.

    Yogi, please delete such “Theatre of Dreams” sick humour.

  277. Cbob:

    I have never been part of a professional locker room but I would bet that every player would love to have RVP stay. They want to win things. I have never cared what the media thinks but I think it’s safe to say that the perception of at least some of our players is that we are a “selling club” and that they have a much better chance to win by moving away and that matters a lot. Re signing RVP would be just like making a “big name signing” and I suspect it would be a morale boost for the players in several ways.

  278. Definately the latter.

    It is RVP that should have been looking to reward the club that did not give up on him. The shame is that so many did drink the kool aid you are referring to. Pay him what he deserves, the going rate and all of that nonsense.

  279. I hope this signing should it be confirmed to be the catalyst to galvanise the squad with or without rvp

  280. i feel really sorry for VP.

  281. Thats Victoria Pendleton.

    gutted for her.

  282. Bill, I am sure they wanted Cesc and Nasri to stay also. We only did better without them. Other’s will step up and we will still win. Walcott to mash it up this season.

    Like RVP, too many are not looking at how good this team is. Would RVP make the team better? tradional wisdom says yes. But again, we were a better team without Cesc and Nasri…well, that what the stats say.

    I just want players in the team who want to be with The Arsenal.

  283. conventional wisdeom, that is.

  284. Probably true, Bill, but I am not a professional, just a fan.

    Noth? You have always been off the wall. What’s your problem? Swallow the whole PC agenda with the accompanying justification for a clampdown of civil liberties?


  285. Bill at 6.25 and again at 8.47pm.


    Would also add I’m pleased to see AW playing hardball in this way.

    It lays a line in the sand to others who might be thinking of dis-honouring their contract by trying to leave prematurely (if that is indeed what RvP was trying to engineer).

    And once and for all it will put to the sword the myth that we are a selling club.

  286. Now, you are just a dirty old man, duke!

    If I was a ‘ne man’, I’d do one of those smiley faces now.

    But I’m not.

  287. pedantic george

    Whisper it quietly.We were a better team when Henry left.
    Anything is possible with Arsene at the helm.
    I think I will tweet that.

  288. You’d be right, george.

    Oh. for ‘ne’ read ‘new’.

  289. All clubs are selling clubs.

    The whole term is a media invention.

  290. “So much of this “alleged” (right Andy?) Cazorla transfer reminds me of the saga with Arshavin especially the pent-up obsession with new signings. In the case of AA he was to be the new Messiah. The idolatry went nuclear when he scored those four goals at Anfield. Two years later he was being booed.”

    This is my fear too Shotta! The level of expectation and hysteria is unbelievable. Surely no-one can live up to that much hype? And we know Arsenal fans can be brutal when they turn on a player.

    Arsenal Andrew, how can you use the word ‘merely’ in relation to that statement? Had he said, ‘I will not be signing an extension because I fancy testing myself in another environment after 8 years at Arsenal’, people might not be happy, but I doubt we would have seen the levels of disappointment and feelings of betrayal expressed. He has tried to take the cowards way out by blaming the club and also tried to make his position untenable in the hopes of a quick and cheap sale. His strategy is looking a bit hollow now.

    Personally, I have moved on a bit and if Arsene decides he stays or he stays because no one meets our price, so be it. If he’s wearing an Arsenal shirt come 1st Sept, I’ll support him through gritted teeth for the greater good of AFC. But he has lost my respect and I can’t see him regaining it. That statement, together with the hatchet job on some of his team mates was the nastiest piece of back-stabbing that I have ever seen in a sport that can boast some real low-life specimens.

  291. pedantic george

    I love Passenal sometimes .Like now ,for instance,

  292. well, Henry cheated on us, hurt us all but has now got a fukin statue…

  293. I am not worried about the selling club label anymore. I look at the players, they have sold themselves short. Those players were stars at Arsenal and each and everyone of them have moved on to simply play a part. They could have stayed and built a dynasty. Their loss, we will simply have to do it without them, a few years later than anticipated.


  294. Yes. Little seen. Ever correct.

  295. George,

    she still doesn’t like you though!!! a woman never forgets, remember that.

  296. His time had gone, duke.

  297. I was also upset about Henry leaving but it seems that there is more than meets the eye.
    He did not write a disrespectful comment about the organization on his website though. That is a first as far as I remember.

  298. Passenal – there was a reason ‘merely’ was expressed in inverted commas.

  299. I remember him saying we were not good enough to win anything and he wanted to win the cl..which he helped lose for us ironicaly. nope i’m still bitter about it. i have forgiven him and he is still an arsenal legend but a statue??? a fukin joke. i’d rather have had an Ian Wright one thanks. or even better a Rocastle one. charlie george…george graham…george rodger…

  300. pedantic george

    I like Duke .He is nothing but consistent.

  301. Andrew, you are an excellent poster. I agree with you 99% of the time. You are an apologist for RVP. You are wrong on that one.

  302. pedantic george

    No what?YW

  303. Markus | August 2, 2012 at 7:51 pm

    If people start giving VP credit for any signings we make I’m liable to get wound up again and twice in two days is far too much so think on.
    Can I just say I whole heartedly 100% agree with the above comment please? 🙂

  304. CBob; at about 5 past 9.

    So true that man. The ‘selling club’ tag is just that; a tag dreamt up by the media. meaningless, just as the “exodus” bullshite is too.

  305. Romania are now going home with a gold…silver and .bronze……

    …….lead, tin , copper and anything else they can get their hands on.

  306. I have said all along, i want RvP to stay, simply because he is a great player and with him, we have an even stronger squad and better chance of winning anything.

    Now, George the purveyor of all that is true will say he betrayed us all, but my pointed, well constructed retort to that is;

    Pffft, bothered!

  307. Wah wah wah Dunk’n Dukey!

  308. I didnt read those comments, Duke. I was upset because he left a year after he decided to stay. I was told that there was more to it than meets the eye; like his divorce and all that.

  309. pedantic george

    Judas lover .

  310. Dex, my respone is mek ‘im (RVP) move ‘im blouse and skirt.

    hee hee

  311. I’d like rvp to stay..i mean all footballers are now cunts arent they…..wew might as well try to have as many good cunts as possible.

  312. If we are not as ambitious as he is and he wants Rooney money, he can leave. If he wants to stay and is satisfied with how much the team can offer, then so be it. It all depends on what he wants.

  313. just on the judo earlier and Big Als reference to what that acheivement is like what about the yanks basketball team then??? eh?? it would be like spain playing their world cup , european cup winning team.. how bad the americans want that gold man……Yeehaarr…

  314. lol dukey.

    i agree with dex over van persie and i agree with dukey over henry..

  315. Duke;

    Its the only thing Frank said after the RvP statement, i agree on. They aint worth the hero worship, or pain that they can engender. Its all about the money and guranteed trophies for the twats.

    Lets use em as chattle, run RvP into the ground till his ankles crumble and his knees explode.

    Mwoohaahaahaahaa!!! 🙂

  316. pedantic george

    Ah yes I thought he was jesting

  317. Even good character people make poor decisions. RvP is not a Suarez type.

    Arsene will determine the options that are best for the team’s attitude and on field impact.

    As far as RvP, if he stays, Arsene will lay a path that takes pressure off the player. Miss communication is always a default option. The only way for RvP to stay and be EFFECTIVE is for the player to feel his bone of contention was resolved.

    I trust Arsene.

  318. pedantic george

    Arsesession I too trust Arsene ,I do not trust RVP.Nor will I ever again.

  319. bobbyp | August 2, 2012 at 3:33 pm

    dexter 11.37

    can you please just grasp that we are poor defensively in part as we are shockingly bad at applying consistent pressure from forward areas.

  320. That is true Arsession, but do you think he knows he made a poor decision? if so, woudn’t he have cleared it up by now. I think that is where the problem is. If you mess up publicly, own up publicly.

  321. is cazorla in then or what?
    what do we all think?

    heres something i found funny..
    my mate at work, whos a sheff weds fan, reckons the whole rvp thing was a smokescreen by the club and the player to send europe into a frenzy over his signature while we clear up in the window and catch everyone else with their pants down and grab a few worldies..

    i laughed..

    and i’ll laugh even harder if we sign podolski, jiroo and fandabbydoza and theo and rvp stay..

    to be fair the whole thing has left me emotionally sick of hitting the fucking f5 button all day and hearing and speaking bollox

    i need the season to start, now…

  322. fell | August 2, 2012 at 2:44 pm

    another fantastical piece of ‘journalism’ by John Cross.

    In one article he’s given RVP’s shirt away twice, once to podolski,…. ‘Lukas Podolski is still TBC on the squad number list but is surely about to take van Persie’s ’10′ shirt.’

    and then later in the article he’s decided that Cazorla gets it…..’Cazorla will be offered a four year deal and is seen as being crucial playmaker in the number ten role for next season’s new look team.’

    I’ll have a pint of what he’s on!

    Now now Jeff, George will take you to task for daring to question the veracity of his messiah; JC’s godly work man.

  323. pedantic george

    Dexter,Jeff was wrong.He cant even fucking read it seems.
    Where as you are just a cantankerous twat,who can read.And should not take cheap shots.

  324. handbags at 5 paces..

  325. Mwoohaahaahaahaa! 🙂

  326. Negotiating wages is a game. To become overly invested in this essentially deceitful process, is to waste energy. RvP is a player in his prime with little time to spare. For him to go elsewhere at this time in his career, would be counterproductive. Should he sign for Arsenal, I will think nothing else other than good for Arsenal Football Club. It will be up to Robin to resolve the upset created by the negotiating process. This will be resolved very quickly on the field with a handful of goals which I am sure he can score.

  327. Oh you know I is just messing George.

    Just following on from our earlier lil dust up dude!

  328. pedantic george

    “This will be resolved very quickly on the field with a handful of goals ”

    Not for anyone with half decent standards it wont.
    I can just about accept people who are not arsed about his behaviour.but if they are and then forget because he bangs some in is pretty poor .If you ask me.

  329. According to George’s bezzy mate John Cross, Song’s deal runs till 2015, so we can all sleep soundly tonight. Safe in the knowledge he isn’t leading the club down a shady well trodden path.

  330. jonjon @ 11.03… “to be fair the whole thing has left me emotionally sick of hitting the fucking f5 button all day and hearing and speaking bollox.”.. here here

  331. pedantic george

    Jealous bastard .I still love you

  332. But, and it’s a big but… if RVP doesn’t leave and Mssr Wenger announces it as ‘Like a new signing’ I will personally march up the A30 and garotte Mssr Wenger with a string of onions

  333. The usual weekly column from Big Al has arrived at

  334. pedantic george

    Double bubble today YW? Surely the transfer news needs a post as well?

  335. PG –

    HIs statement was tactless and unprofessional – unArsenal.

    I don’t know all the details for the circumstances surrounding his negotiations b4 or after, or what was implied to him by those involved in the discussions. I don’t see the point in passing judgement.

    If he leaves, Arsenal will move forward. It is only a sport.

  336. What transfer news George? Nobody has confirmed or denied any signings beyond L’Equipe and Marca reporting it has happened.

  337. if re-upping RVP will bring Frank back….i say we keep the bugger…arm-band or no arm-band!

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