Is This The Time To Sell Walcott?

Let me start by saying, Stewart Robson is a man of courage. I’m not just saying that because I agree mostly with his recent comments deriding Theo Walcott. I sometimes disagree with his opinions during matches and on talksport and Arsenal World. I say it because he is employed by Arsenal, and I’m sure they were not pleased with his outspoken opinion against a current player. There are some franchises that would sack a commentator for something like that, but I’m a big believer in free speech, especially if it’s unpopular, or politically incorrect. I’m proud that Arsenal are confident enough to handle criticism, even from within.

As you can see from the title where I’m headed, let me first admit that I do recognize some positives about Theo. I am not one of the many Walcott haters out there. I really appreciate everyone on our club, and Theo is not a bad player by any stretch. I see that he has improved his game in some areas. He’s a better finisher than before, he doesn’t overshoot the goal as much as he used to, and he has improved on his chips also. He’s also developed a nice little relationship with RVP. That part can’t be underestimated.

I don’t know if we’re going to sign another forward or winger, so i will only consider the squad as it is at the moment, but if we do add up front, it may make this even more relevant. When I look at our team, i just don’t see that much potential for improvement in Theo’s overall game. I think he has a definite ceiling on how much better he can get. Despite his improvement, I don’t see him as a future striker, as has been discussed, and he wishes. I don’t know if he can score from a header, or that he will develop great touch. I’m the kind of person who is very afraid to give up on any raw talent that might come back to haunt us, especially in the EPL. What I am fairly confident of with Theo is, that he is not going to turn out to be a GREAT player. That we won’t be lamenting for years that we let him get away.The skills that he lacks are really not the type that are developed at this point in a players career, even though I admit he may still improve in some areas.

He seems from reports, to be seeking a fairly big raise in salary, and I’m not one who always comments on peoples wages, as you know, I think that’s more the club’s business in general. I just think that his salary as is, seems to be in line with his value to us. I also believe he MIGHT never be worth more in a transfer fee than now. I wouldn’t mind if Chelsea’s interest is real. I don’t feel that would make them stronger, or us weaker. I would take Sturridge over Theo on talent and upside in a minute, except that he seems unhappy on the wing, and is not shy to complain about it. ( Another good thing about Theo is the way he conducts himself as a person, I must say. ) I wish Manchester City were interested, more money, and I’d love to have Adam Johnson instead.

I’m not going by Hodgson or Capello’s opinions either. I just feel that playing the amount of minutes that he did for Arsenal, in our setup, we should be getting more production – plain and simple. I agree with alot of what Robson said, he needs to show more effort tracking back, although he’s not alone in that,  and obviously we all know he lacks some ball skills, which are very hard to learn at this point. So many matches, when defended deep, he can’t create an attack, and just disappears.

Now, one big reason for my position, is that I’m betting big that Gervinho is going to really break out for us next season. He has great skills, pace, moves,  scares defenders, and although he needs to work on his finishing, I believe his biggest problem with that is confidence. Podolski will play on the left side probably most of the time. I also would like to see the Ox get a little more playing time in league matches next season, and if our midfielders are healthy, that position will be crowded, so, it would have to be on the wing. Ryo will probably go out on loan again, but his potential is exciting, and again, a much higher upside. None of this includes possible new signings, and honestly, all the names rumoured around interest me more than Walcott for us. I think we could improve ourselves, and make a profit at the same time. Of course, I wouldn’t mind selling him, and using the proceeds to add on to a big fee for a superstar, but I am realistic.

So I write, with no animosity, that it may be time to sell Theo, shake things up a bit this summer. I would wish him all the best, except against us. Because he’s not a bad kid.

I want him to do well, and mostly, I want us to be better.

Written by jnyc

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211 Responses to Is This The Time To Sell Walcott?

  1. [...] Is This The Time To Sell Walcott? [...]

  2. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Oh yikes, and there was me just twenty minutes ago saying how I don’t like to knock players while they are still Gunners.
    Haven’t read the post yet, but my answer is a massive…Yes.

  3. Rasp says:

    Morning Micky,

    As you know, we like to let everyone have their say. I’m hoping we will not get too many blog snipers, and those who disagree will make their points without resorting to insults etc.

  4. Big Raddy says:

    JNYC. Interesting start to the day.

    Firstly, Your final sentence. Take out the “mostly” and I agree :-)

    Secondly, I think Theo is an important element in the team. You are right to point out his inconsistencies but he HAS shown a huge improvement last season and who is to say he cannot continue to do so?

    Theo is a Marmite player. I like him, always have. He can be enormously frustrating, can disappear, can cross the ball into Row Z, but he also has the ability to terrify a defence. HIs record last season is bettered by no winger in the PL.

    Another plus is his nationality. I like that Arsenal, an English club in the English PL have at least 2 England Internationals. In these days of multi-national teams this may be an old fashioned view but I hold it nonetheless.

  5. Big Raddy says:

    Rasp. I can take the afternoon watch

  6. Rasp says:

    Thanks Raddy, I’m not going to be about much today, but jnyc should also be able to respond later … allowing for the time difference of course

  7. CB says:

    @Big Raddy It’s a typo, should be ‘and moistly’.

  8. evonne says:

    Micky – DID I say something to upset anyone??? What? I genuinly have no clue

  9. phil jackson says:

    sell him and bring nani in his spot

  10. evonne says:

    jnyc – thank you for a great post, I enjoyed reading it. If I had it my way, Theo would be gone this summer. Great player with moments of brilliance, but not for us – we haven’t got 2 world class players for every position, so players that we have have to be 100% consistent. I’d say Theo would be perfect for a rotating team with lots of money

  11. Shard says:

    Firstly, apologies for this, but Robson is a dickhead..or a bellend if you prefer.. I’m not talking about his comments on Theo (which in any case I thought were nonsense- he is not an athlete wearing football boots). It is how he talks about Arsenal. The man can’t wait to critcise anything and everything to do with Arsenal. You remember the ManCity game last season? Rosicky was pulled back in the opening few minutes, and he obviously protested, and Robson says “the one thing about Arsenal is they’re always moaning to the referee and trying to get people booked”. When Balotelli went on his tackle rampage, he made it sound that players like Sagna and Arteta were making a meal of it, or even diving. The ManCity match was the final straw, it’s something he does all the time though. Even when commenting on matches not involving Arsenal, he sees someone dive, and say how it reminds of some Arsenal player. He’s a hater. SImple as. A pity because his talking tactics on Player is actually a good segment.

    Moving on to Theo. I agree that I don’t see Theo as a future striker, at least until his touch and dribbling gets better. I also agree that Theo won’t be a GREAT player. But Adam Johnson over Theo?? No way. Theo doesn’t have to be a great player to be an effective player for the team. His pace is a fantastic asset, and although the Ox and Gervinho are also quick, I think Theo has that fear factor. Besides, as you say, he’s been improving, and I think he will get better. His finishing has also improved, as has his crossing. I think, it is important to keep Theo, as also for reasons of stability, You can’t keep losing players and bringing new ones in, and think of it as improvement. It takes time for players to gel, and I think Theo and Song are more important to Arsenal’s future than RVP. However, if his salary expectations are more than the club is prepared to meet, I think he should be sold. His ability and potential don’t justify stretching our resources. But if it’s within reason, I think we should look to keep him rather than try and sell.

  12. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Okedoke Johnny,
    Read it, and I absolutely agree with your analysis of the Theo situation.
    Thing is, his stats are ok, but to me that merely underlines that while stats have their use, they never portray the whole picture.
    I also agree that his value, in my opinion, will never be higher.
    One point of disagreement, is that I believe you have been way too nice. At no point have I ever believed that Theo places the good of the club above his own self worth, and I don’t like having that feeling towards someone who plays for MY Club one bit.

  13. LB says:

    BR

    And to answer: City and Chelsea can’t buy all the players that come on the market but they can buy all the 30mil players that come on the market because quite simply — there aren’t that many of them.

  14. Space Cadet says:

    Moistly I agree, I think it’s time to cash in on him. As a young clean cut English international with a photogenic face maybe the marketing men don’t agree, but on footballing terms I’ve never been impressed by his game.

  15. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Another thing to consider is the thoughts of Theo himself. He’s always been a nailed on starter. Now he has some seriously hot competition for his place.
    I cannot see him with a guarranteed starting slot anymore, and we should not be paying the kind of wages he thinks he is worth to subs.

  16. Ganium says:

    I luv it time to sell he has not improved well and he wants to be a striker

  17. Josh Trainor says:

    I am a big admirer of Theo, I am not blind to his flaws, but what he offers to the team with his threat in behind and excellent timing of his runs is invaluable and a quality no-one else in our squad offers as regularily as he does. Admittedly his final ball once he gets into these excellent positions can be suspect, and his general link up isnt to the same standard as some of the more technically gifted players we have at the Emirates, but the qualities he does bring cant be underestimated in terms of importance to how we play. With Theo on the right looking to threaten in behind, and a more technically savvy wide man on the left (Yossi towards the end of last season) there is a real balance to the side, you notice this more when Theo isnt in the side, the fear he strikes into defenders pushes teams back that extra 10 yards which in turn moves the whole of our team, and especially Robin (who isnt the quickest in behind) closer to the oppositions goal. Above all else, like the boy or not, he is just turnt 23 years old, with his best years ahead of him and he can find the net when given the opportunity, there arent a great number of players in the squad who I’d place bets on doing that on any sort of regular basis. I know Wenger shares this view, so I’m confident we will see Theo in an Arsenal shirt next season, unless our hand is forced and he really wont sign a contract. In that case, I never liked Theo anyway. G’day!

  18. Key says:

    Keep Theo, Theo is the best right winger in England at the moment and he’s still growing. RVP maybe the best striker in de nation but he’s 29 and we should sell him for around 25M and bring some defensive need

  19. skwam says:

    Theo I think is ok as an impact sub when everyones elses legs are tired and the opposition is a bit wreckless with their tackles, and even then, he has to be in form to make any sort of contribution. Infact, his biggest problem is that his game is predictable and most premiership defences easily counter it, but in the CL his pace is still valuable and still surprises opposition with what he can do. My problem is that he thinks he has improved loads and deserves a hefty raise….thats where the problem lies, him assessing himself as a vastly improved player, if his rumoured wage demands are true.

    Verdict, sell him, get another full back and push Santos in a wingers position, he’s far better a winger than Theo and though he’s a hopeless defender (Santos)

  20. Big Raddy says:

    LB. I only want one. Can’t I have him …. pretty please?

    Micky. Because we are trying to build a squad. We fall down because when injuries arise we haven’t enough depth. Who can forget Arshavin starting at CF, and not just for one game?

    Next up a RB/DM and an experienced GK who will be comfortable on the bench ( Buffon :-) ?)

  21. Morning all, always good to get a post from a new author on AA and thanks JNYC.

    I disgree on both points especially that Stewart Robson is somehow beneficial to have around the club for his media “work”.

    As Shard says he takes every opportunity to have a swipe at the club and his personal vendettas against certain players cloud his objectivity.

    Where Theo is concerned he seems to be trying to be a Chris Waddle mini-me (“He’s got no footballinbg brain” and all that garbage).

    For example during the Spuds home game where he scored after being tripped, Robson said something like this when Theo ran towards the penalty area “What’s Walcott going to do? He’s going to fall over that’s what”

    I also categorically didsagree that Theo should be sold, selling our longer serving players when we are finally getting some return on them sends out totally the wrong message – we are an academy/feeder club.

    There are veery few players with no flaws in their game so to castigate Theo for such weaknesses is a tad redundant as we should be using his strengths more effectively and his pace is a rare(ish) commodity.

  22. Big Raddy says:

    Josh. Fine comment.

    Shard. Top quality as always.

    Skwam. Totally disagree about playing Santos further forward. I would like to see him sit back and defend. Fine player but needs more disciplíne.

  23. rhyle says:

    Theo…has there ever been a more divisive player?! Marmite is exactly the word for him. I’m one of those who thinks that he’s been given every chance in the world and is taking baby steps forward season on season. In my books, at his current rate of development, he should be the finished article somewhere around his 47th birthday. I’m hopeful he’ll still have SOME of his pace at that time…

    The two main reasons I think Theo suffers are because he’s so infuriatingly inconsistent – one week he’ll be turning the game around against Barca, the next he’ll be anonymous against Hull. Or Wolves. Or someone else he should be terrorising. The second is his inability to use the one true weapon in his arsenal (ignore that pun…it never happened…) – his pace. Too often when Theo is 1-on-1 with a full back rather than pushing it 10 yards and ruining the guy he’ll try to beat him with skill…with a trick he just doesn’t have in his locker…

    They’re the main issues I have with him…understand some will disagree and all power to you…but add in some other, less glaring issues – his penchant for running in bad areas, his lack of defensive ability, his complete inability to cross a ball…and you’ve got a 7/10 player too often compared to the 9/10 player he’s capable of being.

    Of course, on the plus side, you have to admit his relationship / understanding with RvP has been developing to a half decent point over the last 3 years…it’s a case of softly, softly, catchee monkey with Theo, I think…

    For me, the Ox is already a better player…offers more in both directions and probably only lacks the finishing of Theo at this stage – that’ll come.

    Hope you’re right about Gervinho – the first season in my books is always “free”…expecting more from him next year.

  24. Big Raddy says:

    CHary. Posting from your phone??

    I agree – keep Theo, get rid of Robson.

  25. robbinURpersie says:

    thanks for the post JNYC..i think its way too early to consider selling theo unless his wage expectations are not within reason and its not mine to decide..Theos stats last season were second to none and though he can frustrate he does win us a fair amount of games in a season so i prefer him with us than against us..For me he will beat Gibbs any day of the week, even Santos would struggle for pace..
    i disagree about Gerv, hes yet to convince me as he has raw talent but his brain doesnt tick in the crucial moments..id sell him on before Theo but i prefer to have depth in our squad..

    Shard @ 9.53am. Top comment mate and mostly agree..Everything bar the bit about song an theo being more important to Arsenals future than RvP..

  26. Rasp says:

    Morning chary, I think your blackberry has a life of its own this morning.

    I agree that Robson should not be slating an Arsenal player, particularly during a game – that would never be allowed at any other top club and is a strange departure from IG’s brand of PR.

    I’d keep Theo because he can change a game. We bought Park for commercial reasons (I assume) and Theo is far more bankable so he is an asset to the club.

  27. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Not trying to be confrontational, but I never got that English player thing. The only England player I’d have anywhere near our gaff is The Ox.
    If we have good Englishers…great, if not..it can wait.

  28. rhyle says:

    …and Wilshere, Micky. Don’t forget Jack!

  29. Red Arse says:

    Good Day, Good People, :-)

    I really enjoyed reading your Post JNYC.

    Having a point of view is one thing, but to be able to construct an essay in such a way as to draw the reader in with clear and concise arguments to support that view can be very difficult, but you write in an easy and lucidly flowing manner, and you have convinced me — I think!! :-)

  30. Bug Daddy/Raspers – for a while now whenever I log onto WordPress I can’t see past the first line of text in the comment box, so I’m just typing blind from the 2nd line onwards…I nearly always have to go and edit.

  31. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Chary,
    “Dripping” people. A bit Guantanamo Bay, and therefore a little harsh, in my opinion. Then again, I have my soft side.

  32. If we can get good money for him, then by all means

  33. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Chary,
    My comment box does the same thing, which is why I ditched the Pink Pussy Cat.

  34. MickyDidIt89 says:

    I think I need a dose of reality.
    Can someone tell me what Twitter alleges wages may be for Podolski, Giroud and currently Theo?

  35. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi Johnny NYC, thanks for a fantastic, well-written and very balanced post :)

    I have a strong feeling that we cannot keep hold of Theo this summer, whether we like to keep him or not. Unlike RvP, he is not that good to keep him if he does not sign a new contract and would leave on a free next summer. So if he does not sign a new contract and somebody offers a good sum of money – which will happen, I have no doubt – I am afraid he will leave.

    Yes afraid, as we have nobody in our squad who can do what he does so consistently. Wingers will always have an element of inconsistency in them, as they can be as good as nullified by the opposition through team tactics, and a lack of form/confidence can have such a big impact in that position (nowhere to hide).

    You only have to look at the top, top wingers’ performances in the Euros this summer: both Ribery and Robben had an ineffective tournament. I also cannot remember seeing another good winger this tournament with the exception of Ronaldo, but then he is an all-round attacker with a free role, who starts on the wing. Same inconsistencies have been shown by the likes of Nani, Bale, Bellamy, Malouda, etc. The one winger I would swap Theo for right now is Valencia, but he is a lot older than Theo and Theo will grow into at least as good a player in the next few years (I don’t agree that he will not develop any further from here onwards).

    Theo’s records over the last two seasons are very good and puts him in the top 5 of PL wingers, I am sure (maybe even top-3). Like you, I have high hopes for Gervinho, the Ox and the Pod on the wings, but we need two proven, PL-experienced wingers and letting Theo go now would leave a big hole imo. A hole we would not be able to fix easily as pure, classic and devastating wingers seem to be a dying breed.

    Does anybody know who is the next Marc Overmars out there?

    Top stuff Johnnie, even though I don’t agree with your general stance. But that’s what blogging is all about! :)

  36. robbinURpersie says:

    Josh, love your work..

    i think Robben had as many bad games for Bayern and Holland as Theo has had for us..and i cant remember Robben being as instrumental as Theo last season..world class? maybe, but you would still have to pay over the odds for that selfish hog and how old is he? I know who id prefer..

    The thing is we dont have quality depth to cover days when Theo is cold or a bunker is set up but i think that’ll change this season, with Ox and even Ryo developing, im hoping..competition will filter the mice from men

    As far as i know, Theos wage demands are (for now) just speculation, yes?

    Who knows, maybe he gets invited for coffee with Robin and they both put in reasonable requests because of their faith in the manager and his vision which incorporates them both..they can only improve playing together..

  37. Shard says:

    robbinurpersie

    RVP is 29, has a poor injury record, and has had his annus mirabilis. From a purely footballing perspective, 23 year old Theo, and 24(?) year old Song, are more important I feel. Losing Robin would have a psychological effect larger than a footballing effect because I don’t know if he can repeat last season’s feat. Still, glad you agree about Robson being a bellend :)

  38. Here we go again with the Theo issue. To keep or not to keep, that’s the burning question. My stand remains the same, Theo should stay. No one brings that element of speed and direct play to our game like he does. We already have the trickery and gile in other midfielders, but Theo is effective in what he does, and even suggesting replacing him with Adam Johnson is not an option. (There is a reason he is not making the Man City team). And in the financial climate that we are in now, no one can blame Theo, or RVP for that matter, for wanting a pay rise if other so called big clubs are paying way much more to substandard players. Theo WILL come good for us. We just have to give him more time. The Ox is a talent, but there is still a lot of polishing to be done with him, so there is no reason to think he’s ready for the first team. We now have strong and tall strikers (Giroud), so just imagine the amount of assists Theo will get if we utilise his speed and he improves on his crosses. This is my take on it, and I will like to see him get the contract he deserves.

  39. robbinURpersie says:

    the only winger/ attacker id swap Theo for is Marco ‘Rolls’ Reus :-)

    sorry but that kid is very impressive, his efforts at Monchengladbach were a breath of fresh air and a steal for Dortmund at 14mil..

    i say offer Dortmund 20mil and tell Song that he sits back as a DM with either Jack or Arteta..he can interplay with Robin as an attacking mid or penetrate from out wide..

    He will be a GREAT player..in fact all the talent is in Germany and spain at the moment bar Giroud

  40. robbinURpersie says:

    My apologies, there are some gems in the dutch league but its all just wishful thinking :-)

  41. Mdi89 – my “dripping” comment may have been before my revised/edited draft, unlike ShakeySure, my nemesis, I don’t like typinsons if I can avoid it. :)

  42. robbinURpersie says:

    Shard, ‘oh ye of little faith’ :-)

    if Robin stays he will reach legendary status with us and lead us to titles, especially as the financial restraints ease..intelligent players like Robin are very hard to come by.

    i had my reservations about Arteta joining as i believed in the body to slow down with age, however he proved me wrong as older players will look to take more care of their bodies..

    i also have a feeling Robin is past all his injury troubles and the additions of Prince poldi an Oli G will only help to ease the pressure on the body and responsibility of moving in the goals..

  43. Goona says:

    No! this is not the time or any time to sell Walcott who has his off days like many top class players do, The lad is a winner scoring important goals for us and England who’ll get better and better so lay off him please, actually we should be down on our hands and knees begging the lad to stay.
    Hope he does and remain’s a Gooner forever……

  44. Macca7 says:

    Agree Shard totally on Robson – he ruins my enjoyment of watching mighty Gunners from afar in Oz as soon as I hear his voice I know I am going to want to turn the sound off – he is consistently the worst I have ever heard. I have no idea why arsenal management continue to employ someone who is so denigrating of it’s manager players and club.

  45. Mark barry says:

    Theo is cabbage simple as that. He has no footballing brain a one trick pony who defenders all over the league know just to stand off him by 2 yards and mop up the ball every time and let’s face it even a blind man pisses in the bowl sometimes Not Good Enough so Jog on Walcott jog on. And he’s the cheek to ask for a pay rise Theo you have some neck.

    Thank god someone knows what there talking about great post

  46. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi RurP, we are on the same wavelength once again today :)

    Hi Femi, fine comment and I fully agree. With the Pod, RvP and Giroud in the team Theo’s song next season will be: ‘He assists when he wants’ :)

    Hi Shard, RvP has had 18 months of a fine ‘season’ behind him and it seems that his injury troubles are behind him. He will be 29 in August and there could easily be another 5 productive years of football in him (only look at Drogba, Raul and Horse Face to realise there is life for a striker after 30). The likes of the Pod, Giroud, Gervinho, the Ox and Theo really need him to stay at least another year to help them all to become fully established in the team. He is the glue, the leader, the spirit of this team, and imo more important than Theo and Song at the moment (although I rate them both very highly too).

  47. robbinURpersie says:

    Hey Totaal, how are ya champ?

    sorry i missed the discussion to your post yesterday, i had the evening off so no excuse really :-) except that i caught up on sleep or (kip) as you guys like to say :-)

    i did wake up and reply, and thoroughly enjoyed it. Cheers

  48. It’s quite amusing to see how many are saying that as RvP is “nearly 30″ and his best days are behind him we should flog him/let him go when those same people were complaining bitterly about how we got rid of experience too quickly and how unjust Wenger’s perceived “over 30′s dislike” and youth obsession were.

    On the claims of Theo demanding over £200k p/w or whatever, NO ONE KNOWS what he’s asking for so personally I’d find it hard to get incensed about a situation that may not exist.

  49. robbinURpersie says:

    Chary, i doff my aussie sombrero to your last comment ;-)

  50. TotalArsenal says:

    RurP, a ‘kip’ in Dutch means chicken – so I am well impressed you were able to catch one! :)

    Btw, I read your comments this morning re RvP and I was totally with you on all of them. :)

    Hi Chary, fully agreed with your 11.16 comment. NO ONE KNOWS indeed. :)

  51. ekunke says:

    to some extent ur ryt,e seems 2 play wit his head down,nd somtymes luks like e doesnt knw wat to do;bt dont tink sellin is such a gud idea

  52. TotalArsenal says:

    RurP, I liked what I say about Reus as well, but I would not suggest to replace Theo with him at this stage. Unproven, no CL-experience – just a great prospect at the moment imo.

  53. Rasp says:

    The fact is that Theo is better now than he has ever been for us. His progress has been disappointingly slow (compared to our expectations of him) but he is improving – why would we sell him now unless he wants to go?

    I agree that stats don’t prove everything, but goals scored and assists are the two most important for a forward player and judging by that, Theo contributes significantly to the team.

  54. Some comments say that Theo has improved? exactly where is this improvement? He does occasional good things but that is more the law of averages because he plays so much (and undeservedly).

    I still maintain that Theo’ situation reflects Wenger’s lack of judgement and coaching skills in the last 6 years. They go hand in hand – for my money Theo has not improved in anything in the 6 plus years he has been with Arsenal. If he has not improved by now he never will and the bullshit about being young is wearing more than thin.

    I believe he is not needed because we have people who are more likely to actually help us more consistently.

    For me – bye bye Theo – nice person but crap player at Arsenal.

  55. robbinURpersie says:

    ‘Kip’ in Croatian =statue

    RurP+vodka =statue from the neck down

  56. TotalArsenal says:

    Should we try hard to keep him?

  57. TotalArsenal says:

    RurP :) that is some statue!

    Hi John, law of averages? 2010-11 goals/assists per game 0.57 and 2011/12 goals/assists per game 0.52. If we get the same average on the left hand side/other winger, we will be flying next season.

  58. Red Arse says:

    A couple of points raised by JNYC.

    1) ArsenalTV is owned by Kroenke and is separate from Arsenal PLC who thereby have no control over who is or is not employed as TV presenters.
    Kroenke is hardly ever here and probably does not know of the antipathy Robson causes in us Gooners.

    2) The question regarding Theo is a bit of an old chestnut in many ways, but it is given some interesting twists by the comments of relatively new AA’ers, today.

    I have a dichotomy of my own regarding Theo, not dissimilar to the division of other fans into their different hate/love marmite factions.

    [Forgive me for repeating myself, TA, :-) but here goes.]

    Part of me ‘loves’ Theo, because I first saw him when he was about 14/15 playing for Southampton kids against the Arsenal tyros, and I thought he was fantastic. Pace, shooting, inteligence — they were all there to see.

    I was thrilled when we bought him and I thought a new Arsenal star was born.

    As time went on, my huge expectations were gradually brought more down to earth with the multiplicity of his serious injuries.

    My earlier impressions of him started to become slightly more jaundiced when he seemed to be a ‘follower’ rather than a ‘self-starter’, which as a professional footballer can be a killer.

    By that I mean – he responded very well to someone like Cesc, for example, who created opportunities for him to show us his dazzling pace and shooting skills. But left to his own devices he seemed bereft of the confidence to make the best of these self same skills. Receiving the ball on the wing, as others have said, rather than take a defender on in a ‘one on one’ situation, he seemed more inclined to pass it back, or fall over his own feet.

    On the other hand, he is something special in his own right, he can change the outcome of games, he does have those precious skills that few others have, he has shown us what he can do.

    I would prefer to keep him, all things considered, but he is too nice, and before signing, he would have to agree to go out, on a weekly basis, with the usual gang of hairy arsed AAers to the Tavern, and learn self confidence, swagger and bravado by being exposed to that bunch of ne’erdowells, and then we would consistently see the best of Theo!! :-)

  59. Macca7 says:

    Goona please u have to be taking the piss “we should be down on hands and knees”. I share the same frustrations as many gooners on theo and the rare abilities he has in the positive ( that speed is scary fast) and in the negative ( hopelessly in the pocket of the smart teams who know how to deal with his pace – no plan B sadly at this stage of his career and as Shard and others say not a lot to suggest he will get it in a hurry).

    I have a different view though on his non-sale and contract extension of 3 or 4 seasons. That way we get to see something for his long development process so far and get full value if there is more in him.

    Little risk in this as I feel England has so few others in his position or age that with his continued international selection likelly and continued favour he enjoys at arsenal with AW, he is worth re-signing cos he is very likely to hold or increase his value at least for another year or two. A weapon for us to have in the interim even if occasional and then take the biggest transfer fee at his peak age around 25 if not improved enough to hold off Ox and Ryo in 2014.

  60. dd says:

    Totally Agree. It’s time for a change. Walcott Out

  61. robbinURpersie says:

    Redders, how are you mate?

    Your follower-self starter comments re Theo are spot on, and now i cant help but seeing theo paired up with RvP and only with RvP, like a little brother..

    when talking about Theos assists last season we must also recognise and appreciate RvP being in the right spot at the right time..

  62. Agree with @macca7. Give him a 4 or 5 year contract, ample time to either develop further, or leeway to sell him on. If we can extend Djourou’s contract, keep Diaby (who is permanently diabied) on the payroll, why not the Flash? Get rid of the obvious ones. Arshavin, Denilson, Vela ‘TGSTEL’, etc., have a balance between speed and gile, and have a well rounded first team and second team. That way, we don’t run out of steam in the latter stages of the season because our players are literally burnt out. Keep him I say!

  63. TotalA/RURP – cheers guys. :)

    Off topic, but how awful were the Spaniards last night ? What a bunch of diving, cheating, imaginary-card-waving drama queens they were. I’ll agree the Pork ‘n cheesers weren’t much better but the Spanish national team is becoming Chelsea like in it’s collection of disgraceful human beings in their team, Xavi-DNA-swallower, Biscuits the cheat, the homesick spaniard-back stabber, Ramos the body checker, and the sub standard Arbeola.

    Come on the Krauts, assunming they get past the match-fixers tonight, I really don’t want to see Cesc’s oily face gloating next to another International trophy on Sunday.

  64. Red Arse says:

    Hi CharyB, :-)

    Just being argumentative —– but those who take the ‘over 30 = get rid’ line may not necessarily be the same ones who decry “getting rid of experience too soon”. They may have also added a suffix; “because of his history of injuries”, too. :-)

    I love to see the arguments go backwards and forwards regarding the choice of ‘keeping/selling” various players. Mainly because I have a que sera, sera (what will be, will be) attitude and just cannot get excited about things I know nothing about.

    What things, you ask? Well — salaries for a start. It would be naive to think ‘salaries’ are £x per annum, because football agents make weird and wonderful additional demands regarding ‘image rights’, accrued bonuses based on x and y, loyalty payments, blah de blah. How many people are privy to what goes on?

    Other factors can cause a contract negotiations hiatus, like “contract buy out value clauses”, length of contract, guaranteed first team appearances………………………. yawn.

    Best leave it to the parties directly concerned.

    Don’t forget, taking the RVP or Theo situation, it is wrong in my opinion that their sale is black or white in terms of resources available to us next year. Sell one – buy someone else; sell both — buy two more replacements.

    The club is and always will be bigger than any individual player, whose playing career, in any event, is always finite.
    Next year, whatever happens to either Robin or Theo, Arsenal will still be here ——- and we, the fans, God willing, will also still be here, and we will have new heroes to cheer and new experiences to share!!

    Bring it on! Please! :-)

  65. Red Arse says:

    I’m fine RurP, hope all is well with you and the Mrs! :-)

    Hope to chat to you later, after I lose the men in the white coats chasing me with the obligatory restraints!!

    Laters.

  66. And while we are at it, why is no one talking about Gervinho? His second half of the season (after returning from the ANC) was appalling. He too needs time to improve on his finishing and assists, but I don’t see anyone talking of how he’s going to fit into the team. Infact, with the addition of the 2 new strikers we’ve signed, Ryo Miyachi to come back from loan, the Ox rearing to go, Wiltshere coming back, Diaby (hopefully), the question is how we are going to accomodate all our players in a competitive formation without creating disgruntled players.

  67. You are very welcome if you want to be argumentative Redders, I was merely pointing out how facile it was to assume that Wenger can do no right or Wenger is always right, with the inane arguments of either being self contradictory; of course I was generalising but there are always implicit caveats in many generalisations.

  68. Four Four Fcuking Two says:

    Theo walcott must be the most frustrating footballer, EVER.IF we do sell him, don’t sell him to another premiership team, why? Ihear you ask, simple really, pace, that pace he has been gifted with is deadly, he doesn’t get the correct coaching at arsenal, he will however recieve that at another club which he will benefit from.

  69. robbinURpersie says:

    Very True Redders, but we all have our favourite players each special to us for their own styles and memories they produce for each individual fan..

    some of us like to play fantasy manager and will pick and choose our own players and formations according to how we see the game..its all a bit of fun especially now in preparation for the official window to open as the decisions made by rival clubs will often have a butterfly effect in the whole football world..

    At the end of the day, in my humble opinion Arsene has earned himself another year at the helm, and as long as the board and owner(s) dont get involved with onfield events and the sporting side of things (yeah right) then im a happy man..

    i really hope this is the year when our financial restraints will ease..

  70. Gooner In Exile says:

    Interesting debate starter Jnyc

    Theo’s contract situation appears to have gone under the radar of the mass hype media as they are more interested in RvP.

    Arguably there is more to be gained from selling Theo financially as he could probably fetch as much as RvP due to age and nationality (if sold within the PL). My best bet would be Liverpool, having lost Kuyt and with Rogers taking over. I also think he was a Pool fan when younger although I could be mistaken.

    Selling Theo would cause far less unrest amongst the supporters.

    Now as regarding his value to the team and the possibility of sitting on the bench this is surely what everyone has been calling for for the past few years, competition for places, it’s a good thing and makes us more flexible. As for his abilities I think he is seriously underrated especially his first touch which I think is pretty good, it’s what he does with that first touch when thinking too much that is the problem, but playing on instinct he is probably the most frightening winger in the EPL.

  71. Honestly don’t think we should sell him but he doesn’t deserve the 90k a week he is asking for, so we should give him new contract and set in his contract a goal bonus if he scores 20 goals you get your 90k if not you get this salary maybe we can bring out more in him

  72. GunnerN5 says:

    Very few players performances are consistent for a full ninety minutes, and IMLTHO it’s not consistency that wins most games.

    I believe that games are won by individual moments of brilliance, whether it’s a stunning pass, a great cross, a magical shot or a brilliant header. They are the sort of moments that we crave for and very few players have that degree of magic in their kit bags.

    Theo. however, does possess that type of magic and for that reason alone I think he should be retained – even though it drive me crazy waiting for the magical moments!

  73. Four Four Fcuking Two says:

    Arsene Knows. http://t.co/A6Byd8Ue”

  74. GunnerN5 says:

    From Arsenal.com

    Yet more positive news from Arsenal.

    …………………………………………………………………….
    Arsenal announce partnership with Airtel

    Arsenal Football Club and African mobile network operator Airtel have today signed a three-year partnership agreement.

    The deal provides Airtel with the opportunity to utilise the Club’s merchandising, hospitality and content rights in five markets: Nigeria, Zambia, Ghana, Uganda and Rwanda.

    The agreement will help the north London side reach some of its 42million fans across the continent. Airtel customers in Nigeria, Zambia, Ghana, Uganda and Rwanda will have the opportunity to win match tickets to watch this summer’s pre-season tour fixture and receive exclusive Club content and news direct to handsets. In addition to the agreement, Airtel will be designated as the official mobile operator of the 2012 Arsenal Tour to Nigeria.

    Arsenal will also support the Airtel Rising Stars football programme, an annual grassroots training initiative that offers young boys and girls the opportunity to play football and compete in a safe environment. Airtel donates money for each goal scored at the tournament to support the players’ education to ensure those involved don’t only get best-in-class sports training and opportunities, but also have better opportunities to further their academic studies. The Gunners will provide UEFA-trained coaches to assist with training in each of the five markets and at an Arsenal Coaching Clinic for up to 50 footballers in London.

    Arsenal’s Head of Global Partnerships Vinai Venkatesham added: “I am delighted to welcome Airtel into our family of Commercial Partners. This is the second long-term partnership arrangement to arise from the continent and we look forward to developing a number of exciting initiatives with Airtel, starting with our forthcoming tour to Nigeria in August. This underlines the depth of our following in Africa and how the profile of the Club continues to grow internationally.”

    Airtel Africa Chief Marketing Officer, Andre Beyers added: “Football fans across Africa are known for their passion of the great game. Arsenal’s exciting style of play and a history of working with the best talent from Africa will enrich this partnership and offer a wealth of opportunities for upcoming players and fans. The partnership provides an impetus to the Airtel Rising Stars in some of the countries that have produced amazing young talent and whose youth teams have gone on to win FIFA Youth and Olympic tournaments.’’

    It is the Club’s inaugural pre-season tour of Nigeria, having played a fixture in South Africa in 1993. The 2012 visit will feature a game between the Arsenal first-team and the Nigerian National Team the Super Eagles on Saturday 5th August. Airtel is in the process of finalising arrangements that will give selected consumers in the five countries a chance to watch the match and interact with the team in Abuja. The details of the promotion will be announced soon.

  75. Plumsteadgooner says:

    Problem with Theo is that he is believing in his own hype.There was an incident last season when Theo told off Carl Jenkinson who told him something like f#@K off can’t remember who we were playing that time.He refused to sign a contract which was offered to him early last season as he wanted to see where we would end up thats when we were having a jonny rotten period.Theo assumed he would have a blinding tournament to entice the big clubs but fortunately this backfired.I think he he will sign a new contract if he refuses to flog him to Hull city

  76. N1 gooner says:

    My god how many players need to be sold and were talking about getting rid of one of our most productive players.

    Just take he’s goal’s against the chav’s and the scum and just how he step’s up to the plate under the pressure.I think people really do need to get off the lad’s back.There are far worse players in the squad and i feel theo does not get the respect he deserve’s from us fan’s.Just my opinion.

  77. kelsey says:

    What an interesting article well done.

    You don’t need my views on Theo but remember Wenger bought him at the tender age of 16 and he still only looks 16 and would I am sure be reluctant to see him go after nearly 8 years at the club and most probably TW will be offered an improved new contract and then declare his love for the club and feck off.
    He has improved but is he worth 80,90,100K a week. if he stays great if he goes I wish him all the best.
    On a side note he must be rated to be selected for England but it would help if some of the senior players occasionally passed to him. The other night he came on for 16 minute and received the ball once.

  78. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Right. The sun shines, and I’ve changed my mind about….errr…well… everything really.
    I now say keep Robin AND Theo. Gerv/Pod on the left. Robin/Giroud middle, and Ox/Theo down the right.
    Byeee :-)

  79. N1 gooner says:

    Another thing is why do fan’s worry about how much a players on?? Isn’t that for the club to decide if he is worth it or not??

    I hope theo isn’t reading these view’s and does the smart thing and stay’s.Anyone who can’t see how much he has come on must be blind.It’s the injury’s that have slowed him from becoming a top winger.I seem to recall some of our fan’s wanting to sell Rvp because he had injury problem’s.I bet the same few ain’t saying that now thou are they.

  80. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Blimey N1, you could have a point. I was about to flog Robin on the grounds of “about to have” an injury :-(

  81. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Not one of you can perform the U-turn as well as me. So much to learn and so little time!

  82. robbinURpersie says:

    Micky :-)

  83. kelsey says:

    NI gooner, hello.

    Then why hasn’t he signed a new contract as of now. Stalling perhaps.

  84. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Bugger. Sun’s gone. Flog the bloody lot :-(
    Work.

  85. kelsey says:

    If we wait another three years we can all go and live in Manchester when they might have a complete first team of our players :)

  86. johnnie nyc says:

    good morning everybody,i woke up early :-)

  87. Shard says:

    It feel strange being called of little faith..Usually I’m called an AKB or something :)

    I’m not calling for Robin to go or be sold for 20-30million. (Unless he wants to go) I also don’t think he can’t contribute to the team. I just think we’ll miss his leadership/personality/star status more than we will miss the player. Fantastic player though he is. In Song and Theo’s case, I think they are just starting to become the players they could be. To lose them now would be worse. Why did we pay them, and play them, all those years if we are to miss out on when they really start to produce. To an extent, the same applies to Robin, but his age means we won’t be able to move him on if he doesn’t perform according to his wages.

    I guess the way I see it, Robin signing on but Song and Theo going out would leave us weaker than the two of them signing on, and Robin being sold. Especially in the long term. (Remember both are also homegrown, and those quotas with the 25 squad limit are worth keeping an eye on) Ideally, I’d like all 3 to sign new contracts.

  88. Shard says:

    The Airtel deal in Africa is another good sign on our commercial expansion. Airtel, might I mention, is an Indian company. They have a tie up with Manchester United in the Indian subcontinent, and it is something which offers a lot of visibility to the MU Brand over here. They are advertising the Rising Stars campaign with shots of kids (actors) from India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh going to play at Old Trafford. Being a mobile company, they also make ManU apps available for download. So although I have to live with ads of ManU on TV, at least the people in Africa will get to see a club altogether much nicer :)

  89. johnnie nyc says:

    im starting from the earlier comments, SHARD, we agree alot, Robson does go out of his way to be extra tough on our players during matches, probably trying to seem impartial, but i dont like when he accuses us of diving, because we are one of the best clubs in that regard. …—–
    —on Theo, i want to say that ive heard scouts and player development guys say that the ball skills that we we wish Theo had, are learned and honed at a very young age..and i dont mean 22-23.. never likely to improve in that area… i think those skills, with pace, are both there with Gervinho and Ox.. and i want them to get more playing time, because i really expect great things from the Arsenal this season, and i dont want to settle for what we’re getting on the right wing….also, a question——-
    —– dont you think that,as an example, adam johnson would do well with lots of playing time, on a team like ours ?.. what i dont like about Johnson, is that hes happy to sit and collect his money and a trophy he had nothing to do with..

  90. johnnie nyc says:

    Hi Micky..i see we agree alot on this.. i thought was too often an automatic on the team sheet this past season… considering some of the bad stretches..but i do trust Arsene.. i just think, if the Ox, got anywhere close to that game time, (although he would have more than his his share of mistakes), would have many more high points. I see him, not only as a scoring threat from all aound the box, but with his dribbling, will earn some deserved penalties too…

  91. Shard says:

    JNYC

    “I believe that overall, Theo has improved offensively, defensively, with assists, in goalscoring and in teamwork.
    “He is getting to where you want him to be now. I feel that he has made a step forward this season.” -Wenger on Theo

    I also think Wenger at one point mentioned how Theo’s first touch, and technique had improved. Although I couldnt find those quotes right now, and I may be wrong.

    I don’t think Theo will ever be a great player, because I don’t think he’ll ever have great technique. But he has improved, and he will further. His contributions have been good despite his lack of technique. With improvements, he will only get better. Also, if a manager as obsessed with technical football as Wenger, is willing to overlook that on Theo, I think that tells us something.

    And no..I don’t rate Adam Johnson. Not ahead of Theo definitely.

  92. johnnie nyc says:

    hi Evonne, glad to hear what you said, its true, i know with the euros, we’re hearing the phrase “impact sub” alot, but maybe that would be Theos niche with a Chelsea or somewhere .. but if a team is parking the bus…even late in a match, it’s hard for Walcott to break them down.

  93. johnnie nyc says:

    Shard, you’re right, i should have mentioned that in the post also, —Theo’s first touch is improved also.. i like to be fair and show all the positives — Arsene doesnt miss anything when watching players, that’s why i get excited about players he brings in, like Giroud, Gervinho,etc… you know he sees something special in potential.

  94. johnnie nyc says:

    rhyle, you’re right about the relationship with RVP, because, all of our opinions, and the merits of the argument may add up to nothing, with the Robin factor in Theos situation.

  95. Big Raddy says:

    Macca7 11.38. Agree with your last para. We lose nothing by keeping Theo.

    Selling NB, Vela, AA, Denilson, Fabianski, Djourou etc reduces the wage bill to allow us to keep Theo and RvP plus sign couple more.

  96. Big Raddy says:

    JNYC. Have you not been convinced by the arguments above to keep Theo?

  97. kelsey says:

    I and others have brought this up before, that is the mentoring of RVP to Theo. What the post headline doesn’t say “Does Walcott want to stay or develop his career elsewhere”.
    I haven’t seen any quotes from him to imply he wants to stay or go.

  98. @babakrdaemi says:

    I would like to keep him. He can turn and influence games plus with poldolski to learn from pretty much the player should aiming to be then keeping seems the obvious choice. If RvP stays with Theo then we will look to be back on the level at least if not the up. If Chelsea take him it signifies that the Russian chavs are bigger tha us.

    We got to stand firm.

    Come on the gunners

  99. goonermichael says:

    I’m not bothered either way. I agree with Shard that Robson is a dickhead though.

  100. johnnie nyc says:

    Ok, im finally caught up……
    — TA, fantastic comments about wingers, great points, indisputable.. wow.. enough to make anyone reconsider.. not just Micky ;-)
    Raddy, solid points as always.——
    ——

    Let me say, there is actually alot of agreement here among everybody on Walcott.. we acknowledge his liabilities, but also the improvements he has made, as i did in the post. also, we dont want to be a selling, feeder club, but dont want to lose Theo on a free next year…..
    —— so, to sum it up for me..IN A PERFECT SITUATION, Walcott would SHARE playing time for us, with Gervinho, Pod, Ox, and later, with Ryo and others.. BUT, at a reasonable salary that we could afford for a rotating player( or a little more, because he’s English, young,and marketable )… i think, a small raise, but accepting less than an overpaying Chelsea would offer, would be nice on Walcotts part.
    But, unfortunately, with all the variables, it’s hard to achieve a perfect situation… most importantly is the thing that rules the world- money. but also, as much as i love him, Arsene doesnt rotate players as much as i would like( that could be a whole post in itself during the season)….
    so we’re left with reality, and have to wait and see, with Theo, Robin, and Song..not to mention, many other ins and outs to be listed here this summer.—
    —also, i want to say, a generous compliment from Red Arse, has made my day already :-) it could only get better with Robin’s signature on a contract.

  101. Goonerwife says:

    I feel like arsenal fans fell for the media bullshit. I really hope Theo doesnt go. He is unique and it’s a shame our fans can’t see that.

    I find wingers have a hard job all around but people expect it to some how be easy for Theo.

    Actually the whole thing is super annoying.

  102. Goonerwife says:

    Robson can bite me. Can’t stand him now. judas!

  103. Goonerwife says:

    People keep saying Theo lacks technique, I think his level is too high to lack technique. Right?
    He might not love the ball like some but he has technique.

  104. robbinURpersie says:

    in the last few seasons id say Theo has put on a good 5-7kgs..Not as easy to flick him off the ball, whilst in his younger years he was as lightweight as a mosquito..

    If he decides to stay put, he would benefit so much from a winger/striker/winger like Podolski, a seasoned pro who has a wealth of experience under his belt..No doubt Theos technique would improve, his positional play would improve, knowing when to cut in and when to drive..in fact all the wingers will be taught a few lessons..

    That has been the problem at Arsenal for a few years now, in that some youngsters havnt had a wiser head to learn from before them.. Theo was never gonna learn from Gerv or vise versa..Podolski will bring something new to the plate, and if Theo embraces the Education, i think with the same build and hard work on his shooting, he could come as good if not better at his age..

    Crazy not to give him another go, and Theos crazier if he doesnt want to back himself and give Arsenal another go, after all the hard work..

  105. I don’t think Theo should be sold and there are many reasons regarding that.
    1.One of the biggest reasons, and he’s always criticized for it , is his tremendous pace,which I feel,even if one dimensional , is a unique quality. On the counterattack, I do not think there is any better winger than Theo in our squad at the moment, his direct pace scares shit out of defenders, even Guardiola attested to that saying ‘We need a bullet to stop theo/’.
    2. If we need to compete in the CL, we need someone like Theo, he’s more effective in that continental style of play, where wingers get more space to cut in, his performance in CL has always been good.
    3. Another thing many of us seem to disregard is that he always turns up in big games…CHelsea, Barcelona, Spuds…generally high scoring ones…its usually teams that park the bus he has problem against..
    4. to cap it all off, the most important thing he provides is a different dimension: Theo offers pace, Oxlade offers directness and technique, gervinho gives skills and dribbles, podoslki will offer finishing and power….to compete in all competitions…we need that kind of versatility…Also, i feel nxt season defenders will mostly shat their pants out focussing on rvp and Podolski…thus allowing Walcott space on the right in which he always thrives.

  106. Reddawn says:

    Sagar Tarkhadkar…….excellent points, fully agree.

  107. evonne says:

    Johnnie – how incredibly nice of you to personally respond to all our comments, even to Micky.Yes, Theo should start in any game, rather than come on as a miracle maker. If, during the game it became apparent that he’s not having his brilliant day, he could be subbed. The more I think about it, the more convinced I am that Chavs would be a better club for him. And like you said, we would do even better, everybody happy

  108. evonne says:

    Sagar – truly don’t understand – what is the ‘different dimension’ in football?

  109. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Oi Evonne,
    I make fantastic points, even if they do occupy both sides of a fence.
    Todays discussion has persuaded me that Theo should stay and that I should stop worrying about trivial things like book balancing.
    As Raddy wisely says, we have enough assets to flog to free up the necessary reddies.

  110. MickyDidIt89 says:

    GM quick,
    Get the radio on. Its your favourite Scot playing at Wimbledon.
    Scary, it seems like only yesterday I heard a GM rant about Murray.

  111. @evonne The different dimension that Walcott offers is pace and directness, not possessed by many players.Maybe the word ‘option’ instead of ‘dimension’ might have been more useful in this case , so I apologize for the use of the wrong word there, it can be attributed to the fact that English is my second language :)

    Coming to Walcott’s ability,yes, he is inconsistent in finishing, but I feel that by hardwork and with Ox breathing down his neck, he can improve and become a more integral part of the team

  112. Anotherswissgooner says:

    If Theo refuses a new contract under Arsenal’s terms there’s nothing we or Arsenal can do about it. Only Arsenal and Arsene can decide how much he’s worth. We do know that players at Arsenal, maybe more than at any other club, are payed for their perceived potential as well as their outright impact in the team. Thus the surprising sums payed to players who don’t get much playing time. We therefore must weigh Theo’s importance to the team now and then gamble a bit on what we think his impact will be next year.( and the years after that!)
    There is almost no downside to re-signing Theo from a financial standpoint unless his demands are truly outside the pale. His resale value will only increase in the next few years barring injury or catastrophic loss of form.
    If arsenal decide to let him go, it can only be because his demands outstrip both his value now and any potential Arsene sees in him.

    I am however tired of seeing first- string players routinely flogged off to other richer teams. It does send this message of feeder club and needs to stop. If we were to lose both RVP and theo the year after losing Cesc and Nasri it will in itself be hard to take, and not for footballing reasons.

  113. chas says:

    Johnnie,

    That’s a fine post right there.

    Theo is an enigma, but he’s our enigma. I’d hate to see him maturing as a player elsewhere.
    I really wish players’ wages weren’t discussed. Who leaks that sort of info? It certainly isn’t in the player’s best interests for everyone to know how much they don’t deserve to get paid every week. Especially when they’re playing shite!

    I can’t bear Stewart Robson. I tend to watch matches/highlights on Arsenal Player with the sound off or so low I can’t hear his negativity. If he knew that much about where Arsenal were going wrong, wouldn’t he be on Wenger’s coaching staff. Sack him and bring in Perry Groves, a true Gooner, not some West Ham reject.

    Here’s a headed goal by Theo. :) :)

  114. Anotherswissgooner says:

    What great vid of Theo’s header! Who knew!
    Great cross from Baines as well.

  115. Rasp says:

    Hi Sagar,

    I’ve received your article and replied to the email. Top stuff, you’ve raised the bar again, others will be able to judge for themselves tomorrow (unless peaches has something else lined up)

  116. Big Raddy says:

    Do you think we could start a Robson Out campaign? Maybe start wearing black scarves or bin bags

    Micky. Less of that “wisely” stuff. God forbid anyone accuses me of that…..it would be a lifetime wasted.

  117. Rasp says:

    Whoaa, sorry Sagar, I’ve just received a post which offers the alternative case to today’s and is therefore time-sensitive, so we’ll probably use that tomorrow and yours over the weekend.

  118. chas says:

    BR,
    There was already a petition to sack Robson sent to Arsenal! :)

    http://www.change.org/petitions/arsenal-football-club-relieve-stewart-robson-from-his-arsenal-player-duties#

    This is for you, GM.

  119. LB says:

    I am sure this has been said a thousand times but I hate that shirt up there on the right.

  120. Hi Rasp,
    Sorry for the delayed reply , i was out for lunch. I got your mail and I have sent you a reply. Its compeletely fine with me whenever you publish my post, as long as fellow Gooners like it and share their opinions on it. I am more than happy to contribute. COYG \m/

  121. Big Raddy says:

    chas. Thanks. I have signed the petition. But more is needed.

  122. evonne says:

    Sagar – thank you for explaining, yes, he is the most pacey guy on almost any pitch

    Oi Micky – love you 2.

  123. evonne says:

    LB – I have seen kids already wearing it, it is an awful shirt

  124. kelsey says:

    MOTD presenter Gary Lineker:

    “Just had a brief chat with Arsene Wenger. Seems in fine form. Sense he’s quietly confident about next season…

  125. Red Arse says:

    Arsenal a selling club? Not sure about that.

    Let’s face it, if a player wants to go, especially if they let their contracts run down what can any club do?

    Season 2011/12
    BUY: ………………………………….SELL:
    Carl Jenkinson Free Gaël Clichy £7m
    Gervinho …………£10.6m…. Mark Randall Free
    Oxlade-Chamberlai £12 m….. Jay Thomas £1.5m
    Joel Campbell ……..£1m ……. Cesc Fábregas £35m
    Park Chu-Young….. £3m ……. Eboué …………..£4m
    André Santos ……..£6.2m …..Jamie Edge…. Free
    Mikel Arteta …….£10m …… Samir Nasri £22m
    Per Mertesacker ….£10m ….. Armand Traore ..£1.2m
    Thomas Eisfeld £400K Gilles Sunu Free
    …………………………………………Luke Freeman £Undisclosed
    …Total Bought…… £53m…….Total Sold …….£71m

    Surplus (Sales over purchases) £18m

    Season 2010/11

    Marouane Chamakh….Free …….Fran Merida…. Free
    Kyle Ebecillo……….. £500K …….Philippe Senderos…Free
    Laurent Koscielny ….£10m ……….Luke Ayling…. …Free
    Sebastien Squillaci ….£4m ………..Eduardo………… £6m
    Ryo Miyaichi …………£Undis ……..Sol Campbell …. Free
    ……………………………………………….Jay Simpson … £1.2m
    ………………………………………………..Havard Nordtveit ..£500K
    ………………………………………………..Nacer Barazite……Free

    Total Bought…………..£14.5m ………Total Sold ………..£7.7m

    Cost of players bought over sale of players ….£6.8m

    Season 2009/10

    Thomas Vermaelen……£10m………..Abu Ogogo…….Free
    Samuel Galindo…………£ Undisc……Adebayo ………..£25m
    Sol Campbell…………….Free…………Kolo Toure ……..£16m
    James Dunne Signed
    Rene Steer Signed
    Total bought …………….£10m……….Total Sold ………£41m

    Surplus of sales over players bought ….£31m

    Season 2008/09

    Amaury Bischoff………£Undisclosed ….Flamini ……..£Free
    Mikel Sylvester ……….£750K …………….Hleb …………£11.8m
    Andrei Arshavin ………£15m ……………..Gilberto …….£1m
    ……………………………………………………..Justin Hoyte .£3m
    ……………………………………………………..Lassana Diarra £3.5m
    ……………………………………………………..(sell on fee)

    Total Purchases ………£16m ..Total Sales ……………….£19m

    Surplus of sales over purchases £3m

    Season 2007/08:

    Samir Nasri ……….. £16m………………..Jens Lehmann …£Free
    Ramsey ………………£5m …………………Lassana Diarra ..£500K
    Luke Freeman ……..£200K ………………Matthew Connolly £1m
    Lassana Diarra £4m …………………Joe O’Cearuill …..£Free
    Bakari Sagna ……… £6m ………………….Ryan Garry ………£Free
    …………………………………………………….Jose Reyes……….£8m
    …………………………………………………….Fredrik Ljungber. £3m

    Total Purchase Costs £31m … Total Sales £17m

    Total Costs over Sales: ……..£14m

    Season 2006/07:

    Eduardo……………..£7.5m ………………….Peggy Lokando.. £Free
    Nacer Barazite ……Signed …………………Arturo Lupoli…….£Free
    Lukasz Fabianski…£2m……………………..Thierry Henry……£16m
    Denilson ……………£3m ………………………Jeremie Aliadiere.£2m
    William Gallas……Swap……………………………………………………….
    Mart Poom ………..Signed
    Alexandre Song ….£1m ……………………….Fabrice Muamba £2m
    Fran Merida ………£Free ………………………Seb Larsson ……£1m
    Joe O’Cearuill……£Free………………………..Bisan Lauren …£500K
    …………………………………………………………Anthony Stokes £2m
    …………………………………………………………Ashley Cole……..£5m
    …………………………………………………………Pascal Cygan ….£2m
    …………………………………………………………Sol Campbell ….£Free
    ………………………………………………………..Ryan Smith …….£300K
    Graham Stack…..Signed……………………..Michael Jordan.. £Free

    (Moved to Emirates):

    Total Purchases £14m …………..Total Sales ….. £31m

    Surplus of sales over purchases : £17m

    Season 2005/06:

    Tomas Rosicky……. £7m ……………..Robert Pires….£Free
    Mart Poom …………. Signed ………….Mark Howard.. £Free
    Theo Walcott………. £9m………………Quincy Owusu-Abe..£2m
    Adebayor …………….£7m ……………..David Bentley.. £10m
    Vassiriki Diaby ……. £2m ……………..Patrick Cregg.. £Free
    Hleb ……………………£11m ……………Frankie Simek…£Free
    Armand Traore……..£300K ………….Sebastian Svard ..£Free
    Vito Mannone……… £350K ………….Patrick Vieira £13.7m
    Nicklas Bendtner…. £200K ………….Jermaine Pennant..£5m
    …………………………………………………Stephen O’Donnell £Free
    …………………………………………………Daniel Karbassiyoo £Free
    ………………………………………………..Stuart Taylor.. £250K
    ………………………………………………..Dean McDonald… £Free
    ………………………………………………..Adam Birchall.. £Free
    ………………………………………………..Olafur Ingi Skulason..£Free

    Total Purchases ………£37m ………Total sales £30m

    Cost over Sales – £7m

    Sorry about the format — very difficult for me!! :-)

  126. Gooner In Exile says:

    Andy Murray just declared himself a Gooner on R5.

  127. TT says:

    Wow, very nice discussion! I believe he will improve much faster with the competition he has now too. I’m a newbie, so I struggle to think who competed with him the previous years. (AOC was too fresh to be a serious competitor last year, I think.)

    However, as ASG pointed out at 17:32, if Walcott is lured by higher wages elsewhere, most likely Arsenal will look for a good price to sell him off.

  128. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Bloody hell RA,
    That’s a brilliant list. So good, in fact, that I’ll wrap it up and call it my own.

  129. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Right. Tonight’s game. Who’s side are we on, The Sausage Men or The Pasta Boys?

  130. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Sausagers for me.

  131. chas says:

    Can’t beat a bit of German sausage.

  132. evonne says:

    I am not going to break life time habit of being difficult – spaghetti for me

  133. chas says:

    Don’t you like sausage, Evonne?

  134. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Carpaccio and I may have been tempted into a DidIt U-turn, but I remain with Chas on The Bangers.

  135. Red Arse says:

    Micky,

    It will take me awhile to stop my head continuing to swivel from side to side, like it was while trying to type it straight from my notes to the screen, and to get some basic formatting.

    Won’t do that again!!! :-)

    What it seems to show is that there are huge player turnovers in and out, year on year, and the excess of costs over sales and vice versa, taking over a reasonable period of time, is just pocket money in the grand scheme of things.

    Sustainable model at work!! :-)

    Coq au vin for me!! :-)

  136. Red Arse says:

    taking = taken

  137. Big Raddy says:

    Pasta for me.

    Forza Italia

    (that’s the kiss of death for the Azzurri)

  138. Big Raddy says:

    RA Sitting on the fence?

  139. MickyDidIt89 says:

    RA,
    I shall study it in detail while you all sleep.
    Extra extra strong local cheddar-like stuff on toast for me.
    Enjoy the game all.

  140. evonne says:

    Monster – I do, chopped finely and fried till it’s almost burnt. How do you like yours :) Just the way it is I suppose

  141. Red Arse says:

    I am going German tonight, Raddy! :-)

    Accident of birth for a member of my family, means I have a tenuous link with them!! :-)

  142. Big Raddy says:

    Micky. Ibdid a very good salad accompniment this evening……

    Water Melon, Feta cheese cubes, Spring onion cut into very thin slices and roast pumpkin seeds. No need for a dressing, just let it sit for 30 mins.

    Add some meat and Bob is.

  143. TotalArsenal says:

    Barolo 2 – 1 Liebfraumilch

  144. evonne says:

    Zabaglioni 3 – Stolen 2

  145. evonne says:

    TA :) I asked you a question about your post ( significance of number 10). Did I miss the reply or did you not see my question?

  146. Big Raddy says:

    Is there a way to silence Lawrenson? Dreadful.

  147. Big Raddy says:

    Escalope Milanese 1. Brautwurst with Sauerkraut 0

  148. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi Evonne, apologies, how very rude of me! :)

    Nr10 position at Holland and Arsenal stands for the position behind the striker (nr9) – the shadow striker. As you know Dennis Bergkamp wore the nr10 shirt as he also played the typical nr10 position at Arsenal.

    Hope this helps to answer your question. :)

  149. Big Raddy says:

    Super Mario !!!!!!

  150. TotalArsenal says:

    Barolotelli 1 – 0! :) Alles hat ein Ende nur die Wurst hat zwei, die Wurst hat zwei, die Wurst hat zwei!!! :)

  151. evonne says:

    TA – thanks. So it is a predominantly Dutch thing, a bit like marijuana cafe?

  152. Big Raddy says:

    Risotto Funghi 2 Leberwurst 0

  153. chas says:

    Carpaccio it is, then.

  154. evonne says:

    I must admit that watching tonight’s game I can see how poor was last night’s fixture. Not because of football, but because of the cheating. Hardly any diving, rolling on the pitch, crying, all very professional tonigh. Big difference.

  155. Big Raddy says:

    Tremendous performance from the Italians in the first half. Great stuff all over the pitch.

    Kroos was totally anonymous, Pod was isolated, but all over the pitch Germany are second best. Is Scweinstiegger playing??

  156. Big Raddy says:

    It’s All Gone Quiet Over There …….

  157. TotalArsenal says:

    Alfa Romeo 2 – 0 Volkswagen :)

  158. Reddawn says:

    We should of bought some Italians!

  159. TotalArsenal says:

    Evonne :D Everysing is soooo beyouutifoelll :)

  160. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Ha ha
    Great comments.

  161. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Reddawn,
    Buy German and stick Alice Bands on them and you won’t go far wrong

  162. evonne says:

    TA – that’s a good one…..I am tinkin…Mussolini v Hitler, no, that’s bad :(
    Berlusconi v Big Frau :)

  163. evonne says:

    TA – :) :)

  164. MickyDidIt89 says:

    I predict
    Thongs 3 Lederhosen 1

  165. evonne says:

    Micky wins :) :)

  166. jnyc says:

    Wow, maybe germans over confident. Italians seemed to play harder and wanted it more.

  167. Big Raddy says:

    Better all over the pitch. The German midfield were total pants. Never got the ball to the forwards , never gave the wingers a chance to run.

    Only Ozil looked the dogs tonight but is he really as good as Theo?

  168. Big Raddy says:

    Peroni 2 Becks Pilsner 0

  169. LB says:

    How about we keep Theo and sell Podolski.

    I seriously hope he was playing out of position throughout this tournament, you know, like playing on the wing as needs must and all that. Because my oh my not for one single moment did I think

    Wow, what a great signing.

  170. VCC says:

    After watching all the Germany games……Have we got a bargain or a bafoon in Podolski?

  171. LB says:

    Bafoon might be a bit strong but someone please tell me what I am missing because I just don’t get it.

  172. VCC says:

    LB..what did he bring to the table tonight? In fact what has he brought to the table during the games played by Germany?

  173. Gooner In Exile says:

    Podolski

    43 goals from 98 internationals

    112 goals from 291 club games

    Van Persie

    29 goals from 68 internationals

    154 goals from 356 club games

    Giroud

    1 goal from 9 internationals

    93 goals from 216 club games

    I’m saying that could be a very potent strike force.

  174. Anotherswissgooner says:

    Excellent GIE

    Please don’t let’s start to second guess Podolski over the Euros.
    For gods sake you might as well condemn and sell van Persie for his role in the tournament.
    How he plays for us is what will interest me.

  175. jnyc says:

    Please lets not judge the Pod on a few games. Totally different situation. What matters is how he will fit in with us. We are gonna be good this season, i can feel it.

  176. jnyc says:

    But Reus looks very interesting. Dortmund gonna be tough in champs league next year

  177. Gooner In Exile says:

    I didn’t see game tonight, but listening to radio commentary they said Hummels was 23… I hadn’t realised he was that young given the way I have seen him play previously.

    I think I would add him to my fantasy shopping list. Shame he just signed a 5 year deal with Dortmund.

  178. Gooner In Exile says:

    ASG good point about RvP…..sell him! :)

  179. weedonald says:

    There are quite a few AFC hangers-on who should be sold well before Theo. His pace, his ability to work with RVP, his quiet and affable acceptance of whatever AW assigns him are great assets. There is a reason why Barca said he represented the greatest threat from Arsenal.

  180. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Well well, Italy in the final. Who would have…
    I think they came into the tournament on the back of three defeats.
    GiE,
    My thoughts exactly when they mentioned Hummels’ age.
    LB,
    Tut tut. I voiced exactly those concerns to Rasp in two conversations over kebabs pre-matches around December. I will not be doing it now we have signed him For once, I’ll look soley at the stats. I’m assuming he plays his club football as CF.

  181. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Swiss,
    Good point about judging on these performances.

  182. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Actually, the point I was making in my chats with Rasp over Podolski were not that I didn’t think he was a good/effective player, more that I didn’t think he was an Arsenal Type.
    I’ve now convinced myself that this may be a good thing. If things are not going well, there is little point looking to the bench as swapping like for like. Maybe we will genuinely have different plans/strategies/tactics to allow us to deal with different situations as ther crop up.

  183. Big Raddy says:

    Micky. That is a very good point. We have complained continuously that Arsenal have no Plan B.

    Like others I was waiting to see something/anything to explain Pod’s signing only to be disappointed.

    Barolo 2 Liebfraumilch 0

  184. evonne says:

    Morning, Podolski was invisable yesterday, especially in the second half ( :) ); he makes me nervous coz IF he is to replace Boy Wonder, then we are in a deep poo.

    I wonder how Italy will play Spain. The thong and Alice band boys remained on their feet for the best part of the game, but I have a suspicion that they will be falling all over the shop on sunday. They seem to adjust their diving to the opposition’s theatrics. I sincerely hope they win

    Also, will Spain finally unleash Torres?? WTF are they doing?

  185. LB says:

    Italy will defend in their usual way which would render Torres impotent. Tippy tappy football will be the only way to get round that defence. Germany’s failed power approach backs that up.

  186. Big Raddy says:

    Hummels: , it is my belief that neither goal would have been scored had BFG played. He would not have been outmuscled for the first and would not have allowed the huge space for Balotelli to run into for the second … he would have been closer to the other CB and defend deeper.

    Furthermore, Itlay could and should have scored more.

  187. kelsey says:

    No doubt that Italy deserved to win and IMO the battle was won by team selection and tactics employed by Prandelli and Loew.
    It isn’t a secret that the Germans were arrogant beforehand and felt they just had to turn up to win.Prandelli had other ideas and a lot will rest on Ballotelli in the Final to see if he can maintain this form,as he is potentially Italy’s only real match winner whilst Spain have several options the biggest being do they employ a striker for the Final and that would have to be Torres. but Spain’s 4.6.0 could potentially subdue Pirlo and the role that he plays in the Italian team which may well be a temptation that Del Bosque can’t resist,
    ,

  188. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Raddy,
    Barolo was always going to win a fight with Liebfraumilch

  189. evonne says:

    Kelsey – arrogant Germans?? Never

    LB – cheers, I think you are right

  190. Big Raddy says:

    LB. They didn’t last night, nor did they in the 1-1 group stage which Italy were unlucky to draw, so why play that way in the final?

    They played 3-5-2 in the first game in order to combat the Spanish MF’s (all 8 of them)

  191. evonne says:

    Raddy – Italians do what’s necessary to win, always have plan B

  192. evonne says:

    I’m learning the Italian national athem, I love it, but also it might be useful for Sunday

  193. Big Raddy says:

    kelsey. In Cassano and Di Natale Italy have two very potent strikers (as Arsenal have witnessed last season – di Natale)

    I think it will be a fascinating game.

  194. MickyDidIt89 says:

    I declare Raddy the site expert on all matters Italiano.
    Forza Daddy

  195. Big Raddy says:

    evonne. It is no coincidence that Italy have never lost to Germany in a tournament.

  196. Big Raddy says:

    Micky. Grazie Mille. Sei molto gentile

  197. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Prandelli is turning out to be a seriously good tournament manager.

  198. evonne says:

    Stringiamci a coorte,
    siam pronti alla morte.
    Siam pronti alla morte,
    l’Italia chiamò!!
    Beatiful….
    Polish national athem has reference to Italy, and vice versa. Didn’t know the latter until I started to learn the lyrics

  199. robbinURpersie says:

    morning all, is it any coincidence that the last two occassions the country was embroiled with match fixing scandals Italy have gone on to win their two world cups?

    Ok this is the Euros but still…. hmmm (insert googly eyes here)

  200. evonne says:

    Micky – and did you see his suit, how he was dressed?? Fecking hell, like a model. They do have style, I give them that

  201. Morning all

    Can someone do the ‘New Post’ honours at 9.30 please as neither Rasp nor I are around :)

  202. SharkeySure'sGhost says:

    Very good post JNYC…..

    Personally I’ve take a vow to no longer comment on Theo’s ‘development’ but I do agree with a lot of what you say.

  203. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Unvow yourself forthwith Sharkey, spill some beans and spit it out

  204. evonne says:

    Micky – Angel’s words for Theo are ‘oh dear, oh dear, oh dear…’ all throught the game, a bit like you and corners

  205. evonne says:

    Raddy??

    New post

  206. Jonathan Jowi says:

    Looks like Theo is on his way out. The recent Cazorla signing seems to confirm that.

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