Send your thoughts to firstname.lastname@example.org and make sure we finish this week strong, chaps.
Arsenal need a winger too
With regards to the shout for Arsenal to sign Mario Gomez I would like to throw in my 2 cents and just say how terrible an idea this would be. Yes, Gomez played for Germany in the Euros, does this merit a transfer to one of the biggest clubs in European football? No, no it doesn’t.
I, like many Arsenal fans, really hope we keep hold of Giroud, I actually have no problem with Oli being our main striker when the season comes around, but we need a second option. Having Gomez as our second option is pointless as he is far too similar to Giroud, our big French lump of sex appeal is actually twice the player Gomez is.
What we need is a second option, something different, someone with pace. Walcott & Welbeck are grand, decent players, but for too long we have been dealing with sub-standard strikers and with the money we have in reserve we really need to splash out on a marquee striker. Higuain is out of the question, we won’t spend £60+ on an ageing striker, regardless of his scoring record last year. More realistically I think why not take a punt on Lacazette. Yes, he has been playing Ligue 1 but his record is pretty excellent, and he represents good value at around £30m. In a time when Liverpool are paying £25m for Adam Lallana, or £25 for Wijnaldum, or £30m for Mane – is £30m for a French international striker with bucketloads of goals in the last 3 season not a bargain? Especially when there is such a lack of world class strikers about.
As an aside I would also like to see Arsene cast his wing towards South America and try bring in the next big thing. It doesn’t take much to be labelled ‘the next Neymar’ these days, but lads like Gabigol, Luan, or Gabriel Jesus must be worth a second look. Barbosa has long been tipped to move onto great things in Europe, why not with Arsenal?
As an aside from a striker, I think it’s very obvious we need someone to fill the right winger spot. Joel Campbell made the most starts there for us last season with 11, Arsene clearly doesn’t fancy Joel yet he still played over 30 games in total. I think Ramsey was great in this role, but clearly he sees himself through the middle (keep angling for that move to Spain, Aaron) so in reality we need to sign 2 attackers as we need to add a lot more goals to this team. Mikitarian would have been nice, but why not go and get Mahrez now? Direct, fast, and last year he contributed massively from the right wing.
Ryan, Dundalk FC – (you can’t bate the wife but we can bate the BATE)
Gross negligence from the Gunners
What’s going on at Arsenal? We hear this morning that there is £200m in the bank and that the club are highly unlikely to add any further significant players to the squad. This means going into the Liverpool game with Sanogo, Akpom and (lol) Walcott as the only fit strikers. Absolutely incredible. This is Sanago that was sent back with this ringing endorsement from Frank de Boer after his loan spell at Ajax:
“Yaya has no positive qualities”
Now. Don’t get me wrong, I hate the way the game has gone. I hate the Man United/Mourhino marriage of gluttony, this is not the way the game should be heading. But, and it’s a big but, don’t sit on £200m of the fans cash. If you have no intention of spending it give it back to the fans via cheap tickets.
Why does any business need £200m cash? It’s lunacy. I. don’t think any club has the God given right to win things and challenge year on year, but to not use the resources available to you when all your competitors are spending like it’s going out of fashion, is gross negligence.
Who knows, Wenger might pull out Higuain and Varane, and whilst that still doesn’t sit well with me in the grand scheme of things, at least they aren’t stockpiling fans cash.
I’m to buy a Horley Town season ticket.
While I understand that there are still around 4 or 5 weeks (I can’t be bothered counting) left of the transfer window before it shuts, Arsenal fans would do well to maybe lower their expectations of what’s going to happen in regards to spending.
Ivan Gazidis, the club’s CEO, has just announced that Arsenal should look to the lower leagues for top talent, the same way Leicester City did! Because Arsenal are still struggling to compete with the big boys in the transfer market. Yes, that’s right, Arsenal FC are now using a fluke season as a stepping stone for success…
This is the same club that has, for a fact, the MOST money to spend. The same club whose CEO announced not less than 2 seasons ago that Arsenal actually DO have the financial power to spend the big bucks and attract the World Class players this club has been crying out for for over a decade. A club who Gazidis himself said has the aim to be like Bayern Munich.
Yet now we’re being fed the story that we cannot compete. Well which one is it? Can we or can’t we? It’s frustrating because as fans, we don’t know where to keep our expectations. They’re sky rocketing after one comment and then super low after another. It angers me to the core! But I have come to accept that, perhaps, we won’t be seeing Arsenal compete for quite a while now.
Oh, and by the way, Mr. Gazidis; We all know that the way to go to win titles is by purchasing players from lower leagues because Arsenal have won so many trophies doing that same thing for the past ten years! And we all know spending gets you nothing; just look at what failures Chelsea, Manchester City, Manchester United, PSG, Real Madrid and Barcelona have been since 2005.
Malcolm, (yawn) AFC
This could be the best United team of all time. Or…
United and Woodward have added four new personalities to their season in response to the accusations of turgidly dull football last season.
Once you get past the silliness of hiring Mourinho to remedy turgid football, Uniteds transfer activity since then has been impressive.
Micky Ryan? massive talent. united’s season will depend on him hitting the ground running. I think it might be safe to assume that Rooney, will have a reduced role as a direct consequence of his arrival.
Zlatan? He has always brimmed with confidence that borders on Demi-godly. A colorful and experienced football talent and a far more colorful Ego. All in all a bit of a gamble coming to the PL for the first time at his age but one can agree that he will be a force to reckon with.
One can only hope that Rashford can keep getting games and improving. But that’s less likely to happen if Zlatan is a success.
Pogba? If Pogba does come to the PL, I imagine he will be made into a holding midfielder partly to ease the pressure of the massive transfer fee paid to get him and also to put his best assets (passing range, power, ability to hold the ball and dictate play from deep) as Jose will see it to use. One can safely assume that the midfield will be built around him to get the best out of him. Also, combining him with Micky Ryan will mean he does not have to venture foward much. This will see his goal/assist statistics drop. But he will still be vital to uniteds setup. Many wonder if this move is the best at this point in his career. One hopes he can retain his Lampardesque stats and does not developed into the rich mans Mikel. Either way, one or more of Mata, Herrera, and the schmidfield will have reduced roles.
Jose? And finally the man with the conductors baton, Jose himself. It’s nice to see him approach this job with more romantic passion than he had at any of his other jobs. It’s no secret that he has always wanted this job. He took great care never to antagonize anyone or anything from man united. Some might say he pissed on us Chelsea fans by sabotaging our hopes for a Fergie-figure just for a chance to manage united. If he is not to regret burning that bridge, then he must conduct himself in a manner that is fitting of a manager of the great Manchester United even though we all know that all it will take is one questionable season to set everything ablaze in typical Jose fashion.
After all, his predecessor was fired after what many clubs would have considered a good season (FAcup, Europa).
Mr Woodward must be commended for taking this step as a response to the accusations against him last season but he must also beware along with man united fans worldwide that it will take time to build a Team after effectively ripping out the soul of the team and replacing it with individually talented players. Also considering That the last club to win the league did it with a group of players that gave them virtually zero chance. If united don’t win the league this season, it won’t be down to a lack of star players.
This could become the best united team of all time … or better still (for us rival fans) a recipe for the Newcastlization of Manchester United.
(Bailly? Never heard of him)
Club v country
Interesting piece today about the best managers in the world not managing their respective countries.
I know some people will think I’m mental, but I am a far bigger club fan than country one. I would much rather my team (Arsenal) win the prem (stop laughing) than England win the Euros/World Cup. I too know that I am not the only fan who has this preference. My dad/uncles/brother would undoubtedly agree with me, and so I wonder if some managers would disagree with Daniel Storey’s initial ‘order of preference’.
We as fans invest circa 40 weeks of the year in to supporting our clubs (maybe more for the pre-season losers, of which I am one), whereas England require a mere month of my support every couple of years (+ qualifiers).
In an alternate reality where Wenger has just won the Euros with France, I would like to think (and would bet) that his proudest moment is still winning a 38 game competition with said Gooners. Managers actually work for their clubs, week in week out, their stress levels and happiness/sadness levels alter every week, hence any title will feel like a massive ball-b*sting deal.
To conclude (lols), I think Storey’s piece is, to many, completely moot. Because too right the international stages should act as a cat walk for the domestic cubs, because they are what really matter. And I bet if most fans really ask themselves what they would rather, fewer would disagree than many might think…thoughts?
Hugo (scared of next season Gooner, Hertford)
(Pep + Aguero = all kinds of sexy football).
Taking back your ex
Mario Gotze has gone running back to Dortmund with his tail between his legs. The partner he dumped for bigger and better things, the hot neighbour who batted her eyelashes at him finally got sick of his underperformance and he was simply punching above his weight given the other men she was able to attract and could satisfy her needs better.
No doubt the chubby little wonder is a good player, a great player even, but are they correct in taking him back? Firstly, what does it say about Dortmund? Yeah we will let our fiercest rival basically attack our squad like a pick n mix whenever they want, but hey, if it doesn’t work out for you, we will take you straight back!!!! Dortmund have shown an amazing ability to source quality players, and to get the best out of the people they buy. You’re not good enough for our bitterest rival, but you’re good enough for us. Did they need to take him back? Do the con’s outweigh the pro’s?
Of course Munich are a bigger club, but if Dortmund want to command any respect, from the footballing community, their own league and from their current squad who might be attracted to Munich, they need to show that they have a one way door. If you want to go, fine, but if it doesn’t work out, you are never welcome back here again.
When this happens in relationships with people we know, it always looks a bit pathetic on the side of the person who takes their ex back, the ex who dumped them. And as for the ex, well they look like a complete tool as well. Should it be any different in this scenario? They got him for a good price, but are their hidden costs to your reputation in a transfer like this, I believe so!
Red Devil Dub
Leigh Roose – great article, as a goalkeeper myself, I’ll admit you tend to be a few sandwiches short of a picnic but I have often fielded questions from team mates, friends, work colleagues etc. who would always ask why would I bother playing in that position, it’s a thankless job, you’re only remembered for your mistakes etc. etc. and after reading your article and an additional google search I came across this brilliant quote which sums up my reasoning perfectly.
Nail on head from the Edwardian Peter Schmeichel –
“To a goalkeeper alone is the true delight of goalkeeping known.”
Mark (Who’s your favorite Roose, Leigh or Bolton?) Dublin
Good song, and you’ll do well
In all the analysis of Euro 2016, one thing that’s been missed is the importance of a good song. Wales far exceeded most people’s expectations and surely that was mostly due to having Manic Street Preachers record a song for them. Think back to when England have gone furthest in tournaments: Italia 90 and Euro 96. Both times they had decent songs.
What about the fine tradition of FA Cup Final songs? In 1994 Manchester United had Come On You Reds, which was catchy and gets bonus points for putting the entire eleven’s names to music, while no one ever heard Chelsea’s song and they were thrashed. Everton teamed up with the Farm for All Together Now in 1995 – who among us doesn’t now sing this version over the original? – whereas Manchester United had some rapper nobody knew and lost the final. In 1996 Liverpool had some nonsense about pass and move being the Liverpool groove and lost the final. (I’m a child of the 90s, in case you hadn’t guessed.)
The decline of Cup Final songs seems to have coincided with the apparent decline of the Cup in general (see the boring finals of the 2000s). Palace had a song this year but it wasn’t enough to beat the songless Manchester United (yet another example of them disrespecting the Cup).
That is the exception that proves the rule: the team with the best song will definitely do well. I’m confident this theory will stand up to even the most intense scrutiny.
James T, Kanazawa, Japan
Curse you, AC Milan
Has anyone seen AC Milan’s squad numbers?
They include 51, 52, 55, 70, 73, 91, 96, 99.
Silvio (Give Pogba the number 2 shirt) Dante
Obscure shirt names
I can relate to Barnet Steve’s mate in yesterday’s mailbox. I’ve seen few other Arsenal fans with “McGoldrick” on their shirt as mine had.
I still have it and it comes out sometimes. It saw us beat Villa at Wembley a year or so ago, but prior to that its last appearance was at Old Trafford for the 8-2. It seemed apt at the time.
In response to the mail regarding obscure player names on the back of a jersey, mid way through the 13/14 season I seen Iago Aspas on the back of Liverpool’s third kit.
Must have been the only one of its kind in existence?
Jamie ( or was it burned after the corner)
My collection consists of;
Miloš Krasić – Juventus
DC United – Freddy Adu
Luis Suarez – 2014 Uruguay
Luis Suarez – 2012/2013 Liverpool
Brian (Just need the 2010/2011 Ajax kit) DC
Great question from Barnet Steve on obscure shirt names.
Firstly, I understand why kids want players names on their shirts, as they look up to these players as their idols.
Secondly, I think grown men who have names on their shirts have yet to emotionally mature.
And thirdly, if an adult does wish to get a name on their shirt, given the nature of transfers/loyalty etc in the modern game, surely it should be a retired club legend?
Lastly, and to the actual point, for obscure shirt names, if I was forced in to it, I would get Stefan Schwarz. He came and went in a season (the “Nayim” season), but I really liked him as a kid for some reason!
Summer 2014 and City have just lifted the league title. Gossip columns nation wide are all talk of Alvaro “the Beast” Negredo being homesick and he wants to leave. To quell this talk Beast gives an interview with City TV to specifically state his allegiance to City and his desire to stay.
That next week I was at a fundraising dinner for a youth rugby program. As an aside its a great program that assists government school kids with homework and then gets them on the field. Head honcho is John Layfield of WWE fame.
There was a silent auction and whilst all the attention was for the team signed Saracens jersey, there was one beautiful sky blue champions top signed by the Beast himself. This being charity I immediately made a couple ghost bids and signed on to purchase. 1000 of your English pounds were spent and I had it mounted and it now sits on my wall.
Needless to say within days Negredo had indeed been moved on to Valencia.
For some reason he won’t reply to my tweets seeking a refund/swap deal.
The obvious conclusions to draw from a mail about someone who has purchased and worn shirts adorned with Hitzlsperger, Baldock, Morrison and J. Cole are that Barnet Steve’s mate has more money than sense, and can take a fair bit of ribbing.
The literary Ed Quoththeraven