Arsene Wenger comes in for a lot of Danny Welbeck based flak in the Mailbox. We also have a happy Spurs fan, and someone pleading to stop Van Gaal revisionism.
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I was very saddened to see Arsenal.com’s announcement that Danny Welbeck will be out for ‘months’. Given what it means when players are said to be out for ‘a couple of weeks’, I can only assume that he’s dead or at best lost his leg in a freak accident.
We wish his family all the best.
Do you know how I know the transfer window just closed?
Arsenal FC has just announced that Welbeck is out injured for the next few months.
Terry Hall, Switzerland
I’m sure you’ll get a lot of emails like this, but I had to write in anyway.
The fact that Arsene Wenger knew Danny Welbeck would miss months and still didn’t recruit is one of most grossly negligent acts of football management I’ve ever witnessed.
Anyone even thinking about writing something to his defense, please don’t. You’ll probably get flamed even more than him.
Frustrated can’t even begin to explain how I feel.
Ahsan, AFC. (We all know he didn’t sign anyone just so he can call Welbeck a new signing when he returns).
A Happy Spurs Fan
The level of derision being pointed at Levy and Tottenham’s transfer is facile and Janus faced.
Going into the window Tottenham’s transfer tasks were as follows: trim dead wood (done), improve the defence (done), hold on to key players (done), buy a defensive midfielder, buy a striker.
Spurs have been derided (by this very site) for short-termist transfer activities, getting players that were available, but don’t fit and are then subsequently shipped out a season later (Stambouli, almost Fazio). All of the players that were bought fit with the seeming plan of how Spurs want to play, and statements from Levy and Pochettino are entirely in line with this commitment to working to a long term plan.
Not securing an out and out striker to share the burden with Kane is undoubtedly not great. However, the Berahino issue is not all down to ‘Levy’s usual antics’. According to David Hytner, cited on this site as ‘knowing his Spurs onions’, Spurs started their negotiations for Berahino months ago. Pulis and West Brom were only going to countenance a sale once they got their replacements in, there was no point bidding before that. Nick Miller saying that Spurs ‘clearly did not come up with a sensible offer’ is fallacious. Firstly it’s based on no evidence because we don’t know the details of what Spurs did offer, and secondly what is regarded as ‘sensible’, or ‘reasonable’, is subjective. Spurs, Berahino, and Pulis wanted this transfer to happen. It seems more that Peace was the obstacle inhibiting this transfer going through, publically shooting his mouth of, reportedly refusing to negotiate, and hiding behind hackney stereotypes of Levy. Could the bids have come sooner, quite possibly, but Levy is running tight finances and moving the club forward. Spurs only sold Lennon on the last day, and they would have had an extra 5m had a divine intervention (lack of) not kept Adebayor on the books. Not committing this money before being sure that it was available seems like a competent and responsible thing to do.
Also, Spurs’ problem last season was not scoring goals, it was conceding them. Yes, they failed to bring in a defensive midfielder that would fit with how they want to play. However, they didn’t play with one last season, and now Eric Dier has emerged as competent, and in this last game, very good. It is not ideal, but it is actually an improvement, and Spurs, when missing out on the targets they did want, avoided buying a short-term half-way house.
Personally quite happy with the transfer dealings and very happy with the direction of the club.
How Will United Play Now?
Nobody seems to have talked about this much, but how are Man Utd going to play now?
Instinctively one expects to see Mata in the no 10 role with this Martial kid out wide where he might do some damage with his pace. This also means two bodies in positions where they will run in behind Rooney to make him more effective….
Although this is LVG so perhaps he will play Martial at no 10, like his did with Januzaj I think, and nullify his pace more or less. He leaves Rooney up top to continue being Rooney and puts Mata on the right wing where his pace is an enormous hindrance and he has fewer angles to pick out sexy passes.
I would really like to see him fumble around with something that is closer to the latter than the former. I get the feeling he doesn’t care much for quick wingers because he seems to favour out and out ball retention rather than players attempting to beat their man 1 on 1 down the outside. I saw he got criticism in his Ajax days from former greats for being too conservative and because his wingers frequently passed backwards instead of taking their men on and it’d be nice to see him not find the right formula for a little while longer maybe. That will only serve to turn up the pressure and make things harder for all the players.
This year, a big factor in deciding the title is going to be goals from midfield. Look at the top six. All of them appear light up top. Aguero/Bony/Sterling, Rooney/Depay/Martial, Costa/Remy/Falcao, Sturridge/Bentake/Ings, Kane/Kane/Son, Giroud/Walcott/Welbeck. Every one of that combination is less than ideal. It could very well be the striker that stays the fittest that could play a key role in their team winning.
Goals from midfield seem most likely from City over anyone else. That is why they are likely to run away with the league.
Sudarsan (Why sell Robin Van Persie?)
Stop The Van Gaal Revisionism
I feel I have to protest about some of the utter nonsense spouted on the mailbox, especially that by ‘United fans’, about the direction in which United have gone under LvG.
When he arrived the team was – because the table does not lie – the 7th best team in England. Let’s put that in context – Southampton finished there last season.
He was faced with Evra, Vidic and Ferdinand all leaving. Carrick got a long-term injury, as did Rafael. Welbeck asked to leave – let’s be clear about that for those comparing him to Martial – he wanted to go. Giggs retired. Other players, like Zaha, Anderson, Hernandez, Buttner, Cleverley, Kagawa, were given a chance in pre-season and were found wanting. And let’s be honest – have any of them played well enough to look like getting rid was a bad decision since they left?
So he had a small pool of average players to choose from, bequeathed to him by season after season of underinvestment. For the first few weeks of the season United had no senior centre backs or left back available.
So yes, he spent money – about £220m – not actually that much in the scale of the market and certainly not when attempting to redress years of under-investment. Manchester City spent about £500m to make the transition to the Champions’ League and have just spent £150m after finishing second! People accused United of trying to buy a title, or said that such spending must guarantee a title shot.
I’m afraid that’s simply wrong, and even if they hadn’t just finished 7th in the real world that’s not how it works; ask Spurs and Liverpool how spending big on lots of players works out.
So he’s had to build a team from scratch and clear out the dross players that Moyes didn’t have the guts to, whilst guaranteeing fourth place and taking all the vitriol that gets spat at him by the press and public every week.
Do you know many managers who have broad enough shoulders and – dare I say it – the balls to front up to that and actually manage to do it? Jose? Don’t make me laugh.
I’m not saying I agree with every decision, or that everything is perfect, but any United fans with long enough memories and enough understanding of football should see that the club is in a much better position than when he took over.
Justice For CJR, Ex-AFC
Hi F365 –
I’ve come later to this party but reading CJR, Ex-AFC, I honestly didn’t see a lot wrong in what he said. His issues with arsenal seemed to boil down to the following –
1. He / she doesn’t like the style of play
2. He / she doesn’t like the way that the manager runs the club
3. he / she does not feel the team has been invested in, despite his investment as a season ticket holder
4. He / she feels the clubs ambitions are limited to making money and not winning trophies
5. He/ she feels it is too expensive to continue to be a fan
Several of the above points are very similar to those made by FC United fans when they started their own club in a move that was universally praised and in many other walks of life, if you don’t feel committed to be a member of the club, we don’t feel that someone has a moral obligation to do son just because they were at one point in their life.
Football brings out the best and worst things in society, but being honest about your feelings about a club is a good thing and we could all USA bit of perspective. I am a Chelsea fan and if th club ever did or actively endorsed something I found morally repugnant (as I’ve found some of my fellow fans can and do) I would seriously consider giving my support to the club.
Being a fan is not a contract for life , it’s a personal commitment and one that we all have a say in.
So we’re just gonna act like Nostradamus didn’t predict Manchester United’s transfer window?? ok
Cortez (one day Kris LFC will write about Liverpool not Utd) MUFC, Botswana