Members Day…….Will Cesc rain on our parade?

Written by Harry

Well it was an early start as I had to get my eldest boy, Luke, to the ground for 0930hrs, as he was due to meet the squad as a thank you for been a ball boy last season……..So Reece, my youngest, and I were at the ground nice and early with little going on, supposedly there was meant to be more happening, but perhaps the rain stopped that….

Anyway as a complete random side note, as I was waiting at the turnstiles, an old school mate tipped up, hadn’t seen him for 23years!! So chatting away blew some time  as we waited to get in.

Finally at about 11.20hrs we got let in, one of the stewards mentioned due to the bad weather that the Photo shoot had been cancelled. But the main issue that was on everyone’s lips was whether Cesc was present and also was Nasri about or had he been snaffled away by the Arabs…

Well they were both there amongst some other notable attendees and some equally noticeable absentees…..

The youngsters that have seemingly been promoted to the first team are, Frimpong, Lansbury, Afobe and Miyachi (still waiting for a special talent visa), Bartley was absent despite signing an extension yesterday, so back out on loan maybe? {Just announced on SSN for a season back to Rangers} Personally he would be in my squad and at the expense of Squillaci…

Almunia was absent, Eboue was about but not involved in the training waiting for his move to be finalised? Nasri came out and had a very gentle warm up, but didn’t take part in the training matches due to an ankle knock.  Bendtner was there and not in Portugal……. My son had asked him if he was staying and initially he said NO, but then he backed down and said things hadn’t been decided yet……..?

After a warm up and some simple passing, the first training match saw an eleven aside match on a shortened pitch, Bendtner smashed in a corking goal, 9million? Easily worth that on that form.  Lansbury scored a long range effort to put the greens 2 up….

Benik Afobe who looked sharp and very much capable at this level, sold his marker and finished with aplomb for the whites….. Bendtner sealed a 3-1 win with his second.

Cesc although involved throughout and showing a great range of passing, his body language was cold, sullied and distant, he did have moments where he seemed to defrost his exterior…….but you could sense that not all was settled yet…….

It was an interesting game, with various players standing out for me, but looking at the newbies and young-uns. Jenkinson looks very capable and will push Sagna this season, Frimpong looks like an ox. Ryo was also showing glimpses of his ability. And Lansbury can shoot from distant unlike 99% of our squad. Benik Afobe could be an asset this season from the bench……

Then the players split into two groups and conducted an attacking practice, with crossovers, crossing and finishing the main areas of the practice.

The stand out moment for me was when, Cesc tried to lob Szczesny, he managed to get a hand to it, it fell to Chamakh, Szczesny beat it away and then again before Cesc rifled it in. Our young pole looks well up for it and his confidence is certainly flowing…….

After that the squad broke into three teams and had a 3 way tournament, of note there was a sublime finish from Van Persie, Bendtner scored some more and Afobe made his mark with a couple.

Walcott was a lone trainer getting put through his paces by Tony Colbert the fitness coach, he looked to be moving freely so looks good for the season opener hopefully….

After this there were some penalty shootouts and crossbar challenges with selected fans. Then the players volleyed some balls into the crowd.  As the players walked away, Cesc came over and signed a few items and had his picture taken with some fans, my Reece was one of them…..

So it was a good day for the Fans, but unfortunately none the wiser as to what will our squad be when the season starts…….

Our opponents will be drawn today for the Champions League Qualifier and I understand the Squad numbers for the season will be announced……..

The new season is getting closer and the excitement is building as is the anti-Wenger feelings amongst some fans, who have judged him already.  For me he has till the transfer window to convince me we have a good season ahead of us……..I just have a bad feeling, no one else is coming in………….

He only has to December before I start asking serious questions……..But I will never boo……….


196 Responses to Members Day…….Will Cesc rain on our parade?

  1. john says:

    My son went to the party for the kids at the ground and saw and meet the players.Cesc was not there nor was bentdner .Eboue and nasri was .

  2. Rasp says:

    Thanks for the report Harry. Your son must have been made up to have a pic with the Arsenal Captain and World Cup winner.

    I share your feelings about our destiny as expressed at the end of the article. I’m afraid my loyalty will be drained by Christmas if we fail to deliver what Mr. Gazidis and AW predicted.

  3. chas says:

    Nice one Harry.

    Shame you had to wait outside for nearly 2 hours.

    Are your boys oblivious to the unrest in the Arsenal supporters’ camp and just go along to see their idols as we used to do as kids?

    Thought this from Arseblog was funny “Samir Nasri was there but didn’t train. OMG. So was Eboue and neither did he. OMFG. Manuel Almunia wasn’t there at all! TFG. And Nicklas Bendtner was there and spent the morning spanking in goals from all over the place. TGSTEL!”

    “….because we’re all pals together supporting the AFC” haha

  4. chas says:


    Do you mean your loyalty to AW or the club?
    I can’t really say I have loyalty to AW per se, aside from the fact that he’s the incumbent manager of Arsenal Football Club.

  5. Red Arse says:

    Morning Harry, 🙂

    A really good write up giving us your impressions of the day and an insight into how the players seem to be reacting to their various states of move/don’t move!

    I am delighted you and your boys had a good day, despite the down pour – I was convinced it would be postponed.

  6. Great read those lucky boys getting photo with the Arsenal Captain ,a day to remember wish l had been there !

  7. ishola yusuf says:

    gud luck 4 arsenal next season.

  8. Red Arse says:

    Hi Chas, 🙂

    That was a good question to Rasp re loyalty to the club and/or Arsene.

    My take is that my over-riding loyalty is to the club.

    Over the years I have seen many players/managers/directors come and go — many of them now only distant memories.
    But Arsenal, the club I have given my heart and my passion to, is always there!
    And Arsenal will always be there, long after we current fans/players/staff are all long forgotten, just as our precursors are now only remembered in sepia photographs.

    As regards AW I respect and admire him, both as a professional and, from what I can see, as a decent man too.
    So in that respect, I also have a personal loyalty to him as the Arsenal Coach, in that I stand up for him against his rabid critics, when necessary, and I try to understand him and appreciate the dilemma he sometimes/often finds himself in.

    It goes without saying really, that my loyalty does not preclude me questioning his tactics, decisions and judgement.
    And I sometimes get very cross when I don’t agree with something he has done – or hasn’t done!
    But I question him out of a desire to understand him and his choices, not as an excuse to launch a full frontal assault on his integrity; his competence; or to malign his motives, as sadly too many others are inclined to do.

    {Well it is Friday} 🙂

  9. chas says:


  10. chas says:

    Hello RA,

    Bit tumbleweedy in here today, isn’t it?

    I wish I was as good a person as you. 🙂

  11. goonermichael says:

    Dead is the word chas. What are Udinese like?

  12. chas says:

    I read somewhere they play the most exciting football in Italy, with wingers, too. Though Sanchez going to Farcalona my weaken them a touch.

  13. chas says:

    Off out, Byeeeee.

  14. chas says:

    Oooops. “my weaken” !

    Really off now.

  15. Greg Timothy says:

    Perhaps after gettin Udineze,Wenger may finally decide he needs the cd to strengthen his defence.The Italian team are not to be underestimated and if Wenger thinks he can get away with his present squad,he is gravely mistaken.

  16. Gooner In Exile says:

    Nice write up Harry, well done on the photo with Reece and Cesc, bet you were itching to get in there.

    Hope you gave the players some of your prematch rabble rousers to use in the coming season 😀

    Shame that Afobe has been loaned back out especially to League One, although I wonder whether the football played in League One is a little less basic that that in the Championship? And therefore a better place for the Youngsters to develop and get match time? Also the pressure in the Chamionship is probably as high as the PL so are the bosses there looking for more experience than a loanee can offer?

    Udinese…they’re striker Di Natale was top scorer in Serie A last season with 28 at the age of 34, lets hope one more year is too much for that kind of form 😀

  17. Gooner In Exile says:

    Loyalty to the Club only.

    But that Loyalty extends to anyone representing the club.

    I wouldn’t have fawned over Henry at the Emirates Cup as much as some of our fans appeared to, a nice round of applause pre match was all he should have been given.

  18. London says:

    Nice one Harry, I felt reasured, as you had written it, that I could trust what I was reading.

    I was also trying to imagine your son asking if Nikki was staying, was it an excuse Mr Bendtner are you staying?

    Or was it Oi Nikki, make up your mind, are you coming or going?

  19. Rasp says:

    Sorry I have been away from my PC. To answer chas’ question – my loyalty to AW, I will always be loyal to Arsenal.

    As I have said before, if AW is being restricted from doing what he wants by the Board whilst being expected to carry the can, then he should resign. If he isn’t then I am beginning to question his suitability to be the manager of Arsenal any more.

  20. Rasp says:

    Apparently Cesc has been ruled out of the two games against Udinese due to a recurrence of his hamstring injury – which coincidentally means he will not be cuptied if he moves on ……. give me a break!

  21. goonermichael says:

    Is that true Rasp? Robin and Nasri can’t play the first leg due to bans. I think we may get knocked out. Cesc must be gone. If he stays he will have had no pre-season.

  22. RockyLives says:

    Thanks for the write-up.
    To echo London, it’s good to hear it from a reliable reporter. I had read a bunch of articles about Cesc being unsmiling, sullen etc but you never know whether that’s just mischief-making.
    However, it sounds from what you said that there is some truth to those accounts.

    And now he’s out of the Udinese games because of a fake hamstring problem. Clearly we are intending to sell him. What makes me furious is that we are probably going to allow this farce to go all the way to the end of August.

    And it also looks like we’re holding off making any more purchases until we get money in from that sale. Can that really be true? Can we really not cover a couple of weeks financing on 15 or 20 million?

    I’m not going to throw in the towel yet – I still think reinforcements will come – but this situation hardly makes for a stable position as we embark on the most difficult opening to a new season that we’ve had for years.

  23. RockyLives says:

    I suspect there will be many who hope we get knocked out because this will be the “wake-up call” that the Board needs.

    Can’t say I agree with that. If we don’t pre-qualify it will be even harder to get experienced, quality players to join us.

  24. goonermichael says:

    I wish I could be as positive as you Rocky. I don’t think anyone else is coming. If we don’t get a defender I’d like Wenger to go. In fact I’ve had it really. Every summer is the same.

  25. RockyLives says:

    Apparently Udinese were the most exciting attacking team in Serie A last season and if they hadn’t had a disastrous start (lost their first 5 games) they might have finished even higher than fourth.

    Just saying.

  26. goonermichael says:

    I don’t hope we get knocked out. I’m not one of those. I want to win it.

  27. London says:

    “And it also looks like we’re holding off making any more purchases until we get money in from that sale. Can that really be true? Can we really not cover a couple of weeks financing on 15 or 20 million?”

    Can that be true? No, it can’t, it is utter nonsense, put out by the red tops and spread by people running blogs who claim to be Arsenal fans.

  28. London says:

    Opps where are my manners, hi Rocky how’s it going in Trona, a.
    Did you like the a at the end. Goin fishin a.

  29. harry says:

    Cheers Guys, not a detailed match report by my usual pretty high standards I think, but I was asked at 9pm last night by the dark warrior princess to cobble something together…..

    Rocky it was difficult to fully gauge Cesc’s mental state, the press made more of his sitting alone than they needed to, it was for minutes and no reasoning behind it.

    He did looked a forlorn figure and there is definitely a need for this to be sorted out, with him moving on. When he came over he was cheery, and talkative apart from not answering the inevitable question from fans, are you staying……..

    My son was truly estatic getting his picture just a shame the crush from behind had me pushed too close…..If you look at Sky sports news clip, you can see the three of us clearly and me hadning back a toddler to his mum who was nearly crushed……

    London, when Luke asked Bendtner he was straight to the point, are you staying nik?, at first it was a full NO, but then he backed down. He also asked lansbury what was happening and he wasnt sure, so not 100% sure he is definitely in squad, or will be loaned out. I would keep him.

    Well dropping to 4th truly has come home to roost, Udinese is a test we didnt want with so many out of the tie, buying at the end of august will be too late……

    No Nasri, No RVP and Cesc will be gone, will theo be fit? Over to you Arsene………

  30. London says:

    Hi Harry

    Thanks for that, it brings a smile to my face that your son, who is 10?, has the confidence to ask the questions we all want to know the answers to.

  31. Rasp says:

    Start believing London. It is true – the facts bear it out. I have gone domne on record more than once as saying we will not buy until we are certain of receiving funds from sales. I expect Cesc to go near to the end of August and for a lower figure than we would like, which would make the whole debacle pointless.

  32. London says:

    Hi Rasp

    How do you know Cesc is out for the both qualifiers, I am sure you are right, I would bet my season ticket he doesn’t play but I can’t find it written anywhere.

  33. London says:


    Before I go into one, are you saying a purchase like Jagielka is dependant on the sale of Fabregas or a luxury player like Mata? If it is the latter then I would agree but if it is the former then all the evidence points to us doing to Everton what Barcelona are doing to us — negotiating hard to get a player at the best possible price.

  34. Rasp says:

    Hi London, definitely the purchase of Mata which seems to have fizzled out due to our procrastination. I’d like to think we’d have the nouse to buy Jagielka as the funds that are coming from Nik (and hopefully Eboue) should cover his cost – but I am not optimistic.

  35. London says:


    So we agree, well, that’s a bit dull. I never thought for a minute that Mata was a real possibility. I viewed it as the club put in a speculative punt to see if see if it would fly, excuse my mixed metaphors but I am sure you get the picture, that is if they put an offer in at all, either way it fizzled out to non deal which is how it started in my not so humble opinion.

  36. Gooner In Exile says:

    If it is true that we cannot buy without selling…..which if we believe Wenger wants to add players seems to be true. Does it not prove that AW is as restricted in the Market as some of us believe?

    There’s a lot of believing in there could have been a red top journo 😉

  37. Rasp says:

    The problem is London, I think we will sell Cesc at the last minute by which time it would be too late for the Mata deal. I like the look of Mata. He wouldn’t be a replacement for Cesc but he would definitely add pace and attack to our midfield and may free other players to play centrally.

  38. Rasp says:

    GiE, I don’t have the knowledge of the financial side to be able to write a post on the subject, but I am coming to the conclusion that there must be a ‘magic number’ that restricts our activity in purchasing players. It is probably related to wages and is seen as a defining factor governing whether we can be ‘active in the transfer market’ as IG stated.

  39. London says:

    Hi GIE

    The trouble with that hypothesis is that unless a manager has an unlimited budget he or anyone else without such a budget is restricted.

    So is Wenger restricted in the market? Yes. Is he doing the best he can in view of such restrictions? I would imagine he feels he is.

  40. London says:

    Let me give you four reasons why we won’t sign Mata: Ramsey, Arshavin, Nasri, Rosicky. The position he plays is already overcrowded and I haven’t even mentioned Lansbury. That Mata deal was a media invention or his agent just trying to elevate his clients name which he has done very successfully this summer.

  41. oz gunner says:

    perhaps we are waiting to qualify for the champions league. A few seasons ago when we had celtic that was the excuse hovering about. Seems fair enough because if we don’t we lose out on alot of money, however on the other side we need to buy to be strong enough to qualify. Surely lansbury will make it to the senior squad if afobe and bartley have been loaned out. If bendy, eboue, almunia, and cesc go with jenkinson and gerv in that leaves two spots. But then again could be enough for mata and jags

  42. London says:

    That said I am sadly still convinced like you that we will end up selling Cesc at the last minute. Did you read about Kroenke weighing in today, I thought that was interesting.

  43. London says:

    Hi Oz

    Waiting for the CL to do what?

  44. oz gunner says:

    @ rasp

    i agree that cesc will probably go through at the last minute leaving us with no time for a replacement. It wouldn’t be the first time the club has used that sort of excuse. It would be criminal not to fund the cesc money back into the team, we never used the kolo or ade money

  45. oz gunner says:

    @ London

    Waiting to qualify for the champions league, because if we don’t the team loses out on alot of money, therefore we might not spend. If we do the money that the champions league brings could allow us to buy

  46. London says:

    OK Oz

    The sun is shinning here and I am in a good mood……….so, I am going to say that I think you might be right.

  47. Red Arse says:

    London, re your 3:30,

    — “Can that be true? No, it can’t, it is utter nonsense, put out by the red tops and spread by people running blogs who claim to be Arsenal fans. —

    Erm, how do you know what is or is not true – or whether it is just nonsense put out by ‘the red tops’ or spread by people running blogs?

    I have as little knowledge about Arsenal’s strategy as you, I suspect, but the appearances are that Arsenal have missed the Mata ‘get out clause’ deadline – source Valencia — which begs the question — Why?

    “Sell first -then buy” seems eminently realistic without a clear denial from the Arsenal management – and that’s not likely.

    Does that make me a ‘failed’ Arsenal fan? 🙂

  48. RockyLives says:

    Agree re Mata – I’m not sure that was ever a serious runner.

    I guess unless anyone has inside knowledge we’re all equally ignorant of the exact reasons for the relative lack of incoming transfers during a summer when AW said he would be very active and would be acting early.

    It’s most likely to be the difficulties inherent in any negotiation, plus the brinkmanship involved in trying to get the players we want for the most competitive price.

    But there is also the possibility that the club is reluctant to spend (even on the level of a Jagielka signing) without knowing for certain that there is money coming in from outgoing transfers.

    The net spend on transfers over the last five years is more or less even – which would indicate that there has been a policy of ‘balancing the books’ with transfers (only spending out what we’ve brought in).

    There seemed to be something of a consensus that this summer we were in a better financial position that at any time since the stadium move and that, therefore, we might be prepared to make a net loss on transfers to bring in the extra experience that AW said he wanted.

    However, the evidence so far could be interpreted as us maintaining the same approach we have followed in recent years: money in first, money out second.

  49. Camberwell Gooner says:

    Rocky – I’ve got an inside source that tells me Wenger’s favourite boxers are white with dolphin motifs (from GAP) so that qualifies me to confirm once and for all that the Mata ‘saga’ was indeed pure fabrication.

    Hope that clears it up for you.

  50. RockyLives says:

    CG 🙂
    So all those stories about him favouring the bright pink pouch look are wrong?
    Bloody red tops.
    Bloody blogs.

  51. Camberwell Gooner says:

    Only on alternate matchdays. 🙂

  52. RockyLives says:

    See – there’s always a grain of truth…

  53. London says:

    Hi Rocky

    This is how I see it.

    Most average families operate on the basis of living within their means (UK not US) they will not buy the little luxuries like a holiday until the funds are available but if the roof is leaking then they will do everything they can to try and find the money to fix it.

    If Arsenal thought they needed a CB to shore up the defence then I am sure a club that turns over 300mil or something could find a way of paying for one.

    As for buying Mata, it never stacked up, buy out clause or no buy out clause.

  54. Red Arse says:


    I have texted my friends – well friend- so expect to see a red top headline
    “Camberwell Fan Shares Friend And Dolphin Motif Boxers With Wenger”

    My money’s on the Sun! 🙂

  55. Red Arse says:


    Whatever to your whatever.

  56. Rasp says:

    Nah London, I disagree again. We do need to reinforce the squad and we are not shoring up the defence simply because we haven’t sold Cesc (or Nasri). I’m sure the club will not be bothered if it is too late due to other chain negotiations.

    What irks me more than anything is that I think the misinformation is more to do with placating the supporters temporarily than some clever negotiating ploy. As I have said many many times, all our bigger purchases hav e been flagged up for months in advance.

  57. RockyLives says:

    Hi London

    You may be right.

    All I would to your point is that at the start of the close season AW said he wanted to shore up the defence.

    Now I suppose we COULD interpret this to mean that he wanted better defensive coaching and for us to defend better as a team, rather than bring in new personnel.

    But most people interpreted his comments about our defensive weaknesses (plus his comments about wanting to bring in experience) to mean that he would be signing an experienced CB.

    Regarding Mata, I read somewhere that the buy-out clause by the end of July is a red herring because it only applied if the transfer was to another Spanish club. I’ve no idea whether that’s right or not, or even if there was a buy-out clause, but there you go.

  58. London says:


    I do remember Wenger expressing his concerns about the defence at the end of the season. But he didn’t say that there was a need to buy a defender, as you know, he never does. I just do not believe that if he felt he needed a defender that he would be denied the funds. If he wanted Benzema then perhaps but a defender, nah it just doesn’t ring true to me.

  59. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Thanks Harry. Top Dad!
    Oh God I’m hearing voices:
    “It becomes impossible to buy a defender, or anyone else, when buying Clubs know you have funds from the sale of Fabregas. Prices become unrealistic and inflated”. )-:
    Not clever or funny, I know.
    Evening all.

  60. MickyDidIt89 says:

    What did Stan say today?

  61. goonermichael says:

    Couldn’t he have lloaned squilacci to Rangers and kept Bartley 🙂

  62. kelsey says:

    Afternoon all.
    I told you Kroenke has stepped in this cesc saga, and i tell you what I don’t think any other manager in the world would take the flax for his employees like Wenger does.
    It is so obvious we can’t buy a quality player of say 15/20 million unless we sell first.The position hasn’t changed.
    I want cesc gone now,most probably have a difficult CL qualifier sandwiched between two difficult PL games and confidence and moral is at an all time low.
    it’s going to be a rocky ride for us all and I would not be surprised to see Wenger resign during the season..
    We have imploded big time and I just can’t see any positives for the’s time for a reality check for everyone at the club.

  63. London says:


    I am trying to work out where I said that we didn’t need to reinforce the squad? I am a supporter and as a supporter I want Arsenal to have the best squad possible.

    I would be happy if Wenger brought 36 new CB’s but apart from Jagielka (fingers crossed) I don’t think he will buy a single one for the reason that he doesn’t think he needs to rather than funds not being available.

  64. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Crikey, and Hi, Kelsey,
    Pretty please, what the hell did Stan say in a nutshell will do?

  65. London says:

    HI Micky

    I am only going on Sky news so take it with a pinch of salt but apparently Stan has broken his silence and come out in support of the board and their 65 million pound valuation of Cesc.

    I got quite excited when I first saw it I thought at last our very own billionaire has decided to flex his muscles and for a moment I thought that maybe Cesc will stay but I soon realised that Stan is just making it clear that we are not going cheap on this one.

  66. kelsey says:

    Why didn’t he say that back in february when this year’s negotiations started.

  67. kelsey says:

    it has always been a question of price and now our season is becoming seriously disrupted at the eleventh hour,yet again.I blame gazidis for most of this, he obviously isn’t very good at negotaiting.

  68. MickyDidIt89 says:

    London thanks.
    Just googled it myself and saw nothing about £65m, rather that 35 plus 5 in add-ons might do it. Lets just get on with it me thinks.
    Kind of in line with what Kelsey is saying, I do believe Arsene will be under crazy fan pressure if we don’t get off to a good start.

  69. London says:

    Well, I am only guessing but we are now at crunch time. Don’t use your big guns until they are needed and all that.

  70. Red Arse says:

    Hi Rocky,

    The last Balance Sheet did show an improvement in the club’s working capital, and when AW said he wanted to keep the current team together and strengthen the team’s defence, with the purchase of 2 or 3 players, it was expected that this improved liquidity would fund the acquisitions.

    Clearly I (and many others) have misunderstood him, because the only purchase, so far, has been an attacking player, funded (probably) out of the proceeds of sale of Bendy and Eboue.

    It seems, from various media reports, that other potential purchases are dependent on the sales, or not, of Cesc and Nasri. — (I know — red tops blah, blah – altho’ some of us read other non-red top papers carrying much the same info).

    Admittedly, none of us know the whole story, but if this balancing act (between the sales of Cesc/Nasri – purchase of other players) proves to be the case, it is hard to see how that could be construed as strengthening the team.

    Surely, the potential “strengthening transfers in” should come from;

    1) the club’s current self funding + the sale of Bendy and Eboue.

    And then, dependent on what transpires;

    2) the like for like replacement of Cesc and/or Nasri, if they go.

    If this separation does not happen, the club’s and Arsene’s credibility will take one hell of a hit!

    What do you think, Oh Wise One? 🙂

  71. London says:


    Sky News….what ya gonna do?

  72. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Are you saying we are/have tried to buy someone other than The Gerv and CJ?
    I know the stories, but can never be sure. If only we knew what kind of budget Arsene actually has, and if the likes of Nic are srplus (mistake in my book) why are they still here?

  73. London says:

    Hi Kelsey

    You live in Spain what is the reputation of Catalans and spending money? Am I right or am I right.

  74. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Very strange also that Villas-Boaz said Arsenal were going to be very busy in the transfer market.
    We’re certainly cutting it fine.

  75. London says:

    If we sell Almunia, Eboue, Bendtner and Cesc then it could be said that we will be busy in the transfer market.

  76. MickyDidIt89 says:

    You’ve omitted the plus side to that particular equation (-:

  77. kelsey says:

    Micky I am not an oracle but if you read any of the players we have supposedly bid for a few days later the club or player says there ihas been no contact.

    London, sorry i don’t understand your question.generally the Spanish are pretty tight with money, please expand your point.

    35 million was the absolute tops for transfers including first year wages we sold clichy, bought gervinho and are now reducing our massive wage bill by loaning players out.
    I still maintain that it is not a happy bunch at the club and that includes players,manager and board members disagreeing and now suddenly 9 days before the season starts,kroenke actually speaks.
    if i didn’t know the club involved i would never believe we were discussing Arsenal.

  78. kelsey says:

    But London it’s too late in the can’t suddenly bring in even 4 new players and expect the team to gell from day one,if we are taliking about winning some silverware though many fans seem to think forth would be a miracle.
    it’s time to stop sweet talking and face up to things.

  79. London says:


    My understanding is that the Catalans have the reputation as being the most mean with their money. Well, that is what every single Madraleño I have met has told me.

  80. harry says:

    you all have me in a spin……..

    The whole transfer window debacle does my head in, promises of been active in the market, really? my wife is more active after 20years of marriage and thats saying something…….

    Are we really sure we cannot buy until we sell? I would agree maybe with Mata, if cesc and nasri stayed we wouldnt necessarily need him. BUt thats buying to replace……

    But I cannot think of one reason why we havent purchased a CB that we clearly need…….are we that skint? surely not?

    Goalie – happy with the poles……

    CB – need one badly

    LB / RB – happy with what we have…..

    Midfield – could do with 1 in there maybe but not definitely…….

    Wide – If nasri goes, bring in mata…….

    Forwards – 1 more if bendtner goes – Joel Campbell looks like the one……..

    I just cannot make my mind up about the coming season, udinese is a big test…….

    The transfer window needs to be at the start of the season not 3 weeks in………

  81. Red Arse says:


    Speculation is both a pain and yet a fascination. We can all say what we think, however ridiculous; blame whoever we like, however unfair; and squirm with the apparent lack of action, while delighting or despairing over rumoured possible deals.
    At this time of year it is all we fans have got, as Rocky said previously, without it what would we have to chat/moan about in the close season? 🙂

    I agree, it would be nice to know what had been budgeted, by the board, for transfer acquisitions. Then we could tick off the money spent on each player against the funds available.

    Of course it would never happen, because if we knew, so would all the selling clubs, which would not make commercial sense, and as you said would push the price even higher.
    Anyway, Arsenal never let on how much they spend on any given player, which is why the cost of Gerv is anywhere between £9m and £13m depending on which ‘source’ is quoted.

    frustrating, isn’t it? 🙂

  82. harry says:

    Crikey, Kelsey, just read your 5.38pm, I am off to call samaritans……

  83. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Just guessing at what you are implying with “face up to things”, but if you mean its impossible for us to compete financially with the three above us, then I think most fans could handle that. My beef is that I believe we were short of two types of player (attitude and spirit being a key component) and we could have aquired those through nimble dealings without a net spend. I am leaving aside the Cesc/Nasri affair, as that needs to be a like for like thing to retain the overall quality of the squad.

  84. kelsey says:

    They all are London. e.g. they built a brand new motorway which runs from the french border past barcelona to cadiz on EEC money and they are all empty as the spanish will not pay the tolls.
    tipping as you know is rare in restaurants and perhaps 5% at the most.

  85. London says:


    Four new players, I don’t understand, who thinks we need four new players and why?

    Our attack is great, our midfield has too many creative players, our goal keeper is brilliant, our right back is fantastic, Gibbs well, I am going to write a post on him. Vermaelen is solid, Koscielny will be better.

    The first team is there and happening, no gelling needed, it is only back up that is needed and they can gel as and when they arrive.

  86. London says:

    “My wife is more active after 20years of marriage and thats saying something…….”

    I doff my hat to the author of the best comment today.

  87. MickyDidIt89 says:

    I am a contol freak and therefore it hurts )-:

  88. MickyDidIt89 says:

    On a lighter note, we spent two weeks last year in Catalonian Pyrenees, and they are top top people.

  89. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Mind you, Mountain Peoples always are.

  90. kelsey says:

    Sorry London I don’t agree but that’s what debate is all about.remember this team won 2 out of 11 of it’s last games and were far from convincing in the Emirates cup even allowing for fitness and players being subbed.
    We need an experienced keeper, the two poles stats are pretty much the same.We need a partner for vermaelen, as personally i don’t rate kos or djourou as good enough.We need to replace cesc and/or nasri with quality and mainly as ramsey in not ready for full season and others are cameo players like walcott and Rosicky and arshavin.frimpong and bartley and jenkinson are for the time for any more experiments if we want to remain a top 4 club.
    I am not in it for glory as i have seen far worse and far better but something is fundamently wrong at the club

  91. London says:


    I do understand your concerns, you know I could put an alternative view forward but as you say, a blog is about people having different views.

  92. Red Arse says:

    Hi Kelsey,

    I see where you are coming from. My own thoughts are much like yours.

    For me, what we need is a CB, a DM, and like for like replacements for Cesc and Nasri. Where I slightly differ, is I would keep the GK position between Chezzer and Flappy (have to keep on Evonne’s good side), but I would like another forward to replace Bendy (if he’s going).

    You are absolutely right. There is a potential 4+ players we will need to bed in, if Cesc and Nasri go and that could be ruinous.

    Even if you were wrong, I would vote for you, because I like you and I bet you have a nice smile!! 🙂

  93. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Nite all. Being called into action.

  94. kelsey says:

    Thanks RA,
    The cheque is in the post.

    micky you might be having a lot of early nights this autumn 😉

  95. Red Arse says:


    Always bragging! 🙂

  96. goonermichael says:

    Is your wife like Harry’s Mickey? 😉

  97. Evonne says:

    Harry – you wrote a good post, you are a great guy and a good father. But who the hell took that picture of Reece’s half face?????

  98. goonermichael says:

    Kelsey. I share your pessimism. I think this will be Wengers last season.

  99. London says:

    Does anyone know if Wilshere is likely to be playing tomorrow?

  100. goonermichael says:

    He didn’t train at the members day so I doubt it London.

  101. Garthy says:

    Well I can safely say forth first time in my 38 years I really no longer care what Arsenal do any more. Wenger has slowly but surely turned a competitive club into a laughing stock. Each year saying we need such and such ( I know papers make up a whole load of BS) but the transfer dealings are as inept as AWs tactical prowess these days. He’s like Sven was with England and has no plan B. Has bought questionable young players some have made it most have not.
    Other clubs buy players to give them a new drag edge each season. Everyone knows how Arsenal play and the team never changes so they know how to play to
    Arsenals weaknesses mainly the defence!

    There is something very very wrong at Arsenal and Wenger/Gazidis surely can see it . Even Stevie Wonder can see it!

  102. London says:

    08457 90 90 90 here you go guys.

  103. London says:


    I don’t think you have been here before, in my non official capacity welcome to the site.

    Pleasantries over……….38 years, you have been supporting Arsenal for 38 years and it is now when we play some of the most exciting football in the history of the club that you no longer care. Get a grip man.

    The defence you worry about was without the best CB we have at the club last season. Vermaelen will return stronger than ever, we have fantastic prospects in Wilshere and Ramsey and the attack is mouth watering.

    What’s not to like?

  104. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Battle won, I’m back.
    “Is your wife like Harry’s Mickey?”.
    Now, knowing your reputation, you are probably the last person on here to whom I would describe my Wife. You would be round faster than I can re-load!

  105. MickyDidIt89 says:

    I take it that’s my Samaratan no.? (-:

  106. harry says:

    4 more kelsey? nah……….

    Szczesny, Fabianski, Mannone……….
    Almunia (Off) So maybe room for another….

    Sagna, Jenkinson

    Gibbs, Traore (vermaelen provides cover as does Jenkinson)

    Vermaelen, Koscielny, Djourou, Squillaci – CB needed………..

    Song, Frimpong – DM would be beneficial but not essential…..

    Diaby, Ramsey, Wilshere, rosicky, Fabregas, Nasri, Arshavin,Lansbury (Hopefully), Eboue (Off?) – just need a replacement for Nasri if he goes……

    Walcott, Van Persie, Gervinho, Chamakh, Bendtner (Not left yet), Miyiachi (hopefully), Vela……..If bendtner goes, then Campbell will come in……..Would like to keep Afobe in the squad……

    So for me a CB is imperative……..the rest depends on who goes……..

  107. harry says:

    Evonne, unfortunately I did, but was getting shoved from behind…..

    Arsenals main weakness last year was NOT the defence, it was the poor strike to goal ratio……..after xmas goals dried up……….

    dont mention the newcastle game that was a one off and the fault of dowd……..aided by diaby……..

  108. Evonne says:

    Harry – 🙂 🙂 Tell Reece I give him a fiver for a copy of that pic

  109. Red Arse says:


    Your 7:08, Spot on!! 🙂

  110. Rasp says:

    I have been saying this since the end of last season. If AW doesn’t believe that the defense needs strengthening means that we require a new player or two then he really has lost it.

  111. dandan says:

    The Pessimist

    1 Nothing to do but work,2 Nothing to eat but food,3 Nothing to wear but clothes4 To keep one from going nude.5 Nothing to breathe but air6 Quick as a flash ‘t is gone;7 Nowhere to fall but off,8 Nowhere to stand but on.9 Nothing to comb but hair,10 Nowhere to sleep but in bed,11 Nothing to weep but tears,12 Nothing to bury but dead.13 Nothing to sing but songs,14 Ah, well, alas! alack!15 Nowhere to go but out,16 Nowhere to come but back.17 Nothing to see but sights,18 Nothing to quench but thirst,19 Nothing to have but what we’ve got;20 Thus thro’ life we are cursed.21 Nothing to strike but a gait;22 Everything moves that goes.23 Nothing at all but common sense24 Can ever withstand these woes

  112. dandan says:

    Having deliberately not posted, just popping in from time to time over the past week or so, I have been saddened as to how our blog has become, despite the valiant efforts of a few diehards, such a pessimistic place.

    We are still almost 4 weeks from the close of the transfer window. We may not buy anyone, AW may have no money, the press may be 100% right to have us dead and buried before a ball is kicked, we may lose half the squad, sacrificed by Directors intent only on profit. All that is possible, but it is far more likely to be nonsensical baseless bullshit.

    Perhaps this poem may give some perspective, I hope so, the final two lines sum it up for me.

  113. RockyLives says:

    I would like to see several changes to the team – not so much because we’re weak in this position or that position, but because of the morale issue. I think our team just needs a shake-up.

    Last season we had a team who were good enough to put themselves in a position where they could have won the league. But when it came down to it they encountered some sort of psychological block at the crucial moments. It’s like they became successophobes.

    The idea that that group of players had a tendency to choke at crucial moments was around before the 2010/11 season began, and then the events of the season reinforced it in spades (the home defeat to the Spuds from 2-0 up; the 4-4 at Toon; the CC Final; taking the lead against Liverpool in the 3rd minute of injury time and still not winning). It got to the point where I think the players have begun to believe what’s written about them: they believe they ARE chokers, which is why I have real doubts about their ability to win anything together.

    However, the psychological make-up of a team can be substantially altered by the addition of two or three different characters – ones who are not infected by the choking virus.

    I think this is what AW was referring to when he talked of the need to bring in experience. So far I don’t think either Jenkinson or Gerv constitute the sort of experience he meant. Hopefully the new signings in the wings (fingers crossed) will do the job.

  114. Red Arse says:

    Hi Dandan, 🙂

    We could have done with you in the past few days, hard going at times.

    Nothing at all but common sense,
    Can ever withstand these woes

    Should become part of the AA masthead!

  115. RockyLives says:

    Welcome back dandan
    I remain optimistic but I can understand others’ frustrations, not least because it feels as if the current Arsenal crop is so close to being successful.

  116. London says:

    “Arsenals main weakness last year was NOT the defence, it was the poor strike to goal ratio……..after xmas goals dried up……….”

    This comment brought tears to my eyes……..I have an ally, at last I have found someone who was watching the same games as me.

  117. London says:

    And talking of allies Dandan the site’s whilte knight is back.

  118. RockyLives says:

    “Arsenals main weakness last year was NOT the defence, it was the poor strike to goal ratio……..after xmas goals dried up……….”

    Truth is, we were failing at both ends. Our scoring went down the pan and our defending remained poor. We conceded 12 goals in our last 6 EPL.

  119. RockyLives says:

    * last 6 EPL games.

  120. gunnern5 says:

    I prefer not to get involved in speculative “what, if” dialogue, so instead………..

    Yesterday I locked my keys in my car.
    It took me four hours to get my wife out………………..

  121. London says:

    Rocky 8:14

    A very interesting read.

  122. gunnern5 says:

    I just got back from a pleasure trip to the airport.
    I dropped my wife off.

  123. London says:

    To suggest that the defence was faultless would obviously be wrong but oh how many times did we watch the attack fail to get behind the bus that the opposition had parked.

  124. gunnern5 says:

    My friend had bandages on both ears – I asked what happened.
    He said he was ironing and the phone rang.
    I asked what about the other ear?
    He said “I had to call the Doctor”

  125. Red Arse says:

    Hi GN5, 🙂

    A very nice end to my blogging day!

    Thank you. 🙂

  126. RockyLives says:

    Thanks (I think)
    The weird thing is that I don’t think that group of players lacks the ability to win, but it’s almost as if the deadening mantra of “six years since a trophy” has seeped into their collective consciousness and made them feel either inadequate or else too pressured to be able to perform as freely as they ought.

  127. dandan says:

    Hi Rocky, RA. It makes me sad because in this crappy world of ours, that is falling apart around our ears and believe me has much worse to come.

    We have been blessed by the gift’s of excitement, beauty, skill, awe and comradeship built around a collection of young men who chase a “pigs bladder” as they say, around.
    They wear they colours many of us from our earliest years have dreamt of wearing.
    Cannot these killjoys,these prophets of doom understand that in these straightened times, a collective belonging such as ours is a crutch a lifeline to many and the deliberate tearing down of faith and dreams, without the knowledge to justify it, is cruel and unjust.
    The western world is in hard times we will all need our crutches before it is done.

  128. Red Arse says:

    Before I go, Rocky, I think you have hit the nail on the head.

    In the first half of the game at Newcastle, we gave the Toon such a stunning lesson in how to play football, absolutely hammered them, it seems utterly, utterly inexplicable how we allowed them back into it, and were a bit fortunate to hang on, whatever the rights or wrongs of the sending off.

    Lack of bottle? I did not understand how it happened then and still don’t understand now!! 😦 😦

  129. dandan says:

    Having pontificated I will now quietly slip away 🙂

  130. London says:


    Hmmmmmm, that makes two comments in a row that I agree with, I am going to have to try harder.

    I remember when I used to turn my nose up at the CC and even the FA Cup as distractions from the real competitions but in those days we did still have TH14 and a couple of others to guide the new comers into the winning mentality but now not one of them knows what winning a trophy feels like. Times have changed and I would bite someones hand off for the CC.

  131. gunnern5 says:

    On the defence v offense debate here are our stats for last season.

    Games 1 to 10 – GF22, GA10
    Games 11 to 19 – GF17, GA12
    Ist half 1 to 19 – GF39, GA22
    Games 20 to 29 – GF20, GA 7
    Games 30 to 38 – GF13, GA14
    2nd Half 20 to 38 – GF 43, GA29

    To me there is nothing to really indicate if t was our offense or defence that was the issue, the last 9 games were our worst for both……..

  132. Rasp says:


    I think you miss the point entirely. It is well within our (the club’s) power to make improvements but not only do they resolutely refuse to do so but they feed us the same transparent spin every year and expect us just to swallow it. No-one’s asking us to build up enormous debt or even to buy 5 or 6 players – two would probably do it – the same two we’ve needed for the past three seasons.

  133. gunnern5 says:


    2nd half should haver read……..

    GF33, GA 21.

  134. Red Arse says:

    True Dandan, so true, so very true!

    I am not being patronizing to some of the dissenters (well maybe I am) but my idea/definition of a fan or supporter is perhaps old fashioned, but is summed up as;

    “Someone who sustains, advocates, and loyally defends his/her team, without hesitation!”

    Put another way; “Someone who does NOT sustain, advocate, and loyally defend his/her team, without hesitation is NOT a supporter!”

    What’s not to understand?

  135. London says:

    The last nine games were crap, we had gone to pot by then. The attack was lost for ideas and the defence was just lost.

  136. Red Arse says:

    Finally, finally,

    I still believe we will have a much changed and hopefully improved roster next season.

    Have faith Rasper — at least until 31st August 2011. 🙂

    Nite all.

  137. gunnern5 says:

    Rasp while I agree in the disappointing end result in not filling the obvious gaps. I do not agree with your assumption that “they resolutely refuse to do so”

    How could you possibly know that to be a fact?

  138. London says:

    Give him hell Gn5

  139. dandan says:

    Rasp good evening, Your opinion is well known and consistent, we shall wait to seasons end to see who is right.
    As for missing the point, no I don’t think so, constructive criticism such as you have just penned is fine, but the (and I choose the word advisedly) anger you display at not winning anything is not.

    But more than your own totally valid opinion it is the unmitigated, unfounded crap that I was actually referring to, so perhaps through my bad prose it was perhaps you who missed the point.

  140. RockyLives says:

    Damn. I’m going to have to work harder to get you to disagree 🙂

    I’m 100% with you about the CC. When I flew over from Canada (indeed from Trona!) for this year’s final I really felt that lifting that cup would have made all the difference to the team. Who knows whether we would have done any better on the league run-in, but my gut feeling is that we would.

  141. gunnern5 says:

    My brother in law was a black belt in Karate when he joined the army.

    The first time he saluted he killed himself.

  142. RockyLives says:

    One that our resident lawyers might appreciate:

    A man walks into a lawyer’s office and asks the lawyer what his rates are.
    “I charge $100 per 3 questions.”
    “That’s rather expensive for only three questions, isn’t it?” asks the man.
    “Yes it is. And your final question?”

  143. RockyLives says:

    And an accountancy joke for Redders…

    There once was a business owner who was interviewing people for a division manager position. He decided to select the individual that could answer the question “how much is 2+2?”

    The engineer pulled out his slide rule and shuffled it back and forth, and finally announced: “It lies between 3.98 and 4.02”.

    The mathematician said: “In two hours I can demonstrate it equals 4 with the following short proof.”

    The physicist declared: “It’s in the magnitude of 1×101.”

    The logician paused for a long while and then said: “This problem is solvable.”

    The social worker said: “I don’t know the answer, but I am glad that we discussed this important question.”

    The attorney stated: “In the case of Svenson vs. the State, 2+2 was declared to be 4.”

    The accountant looked at the business owner, then got out of his chair, went to see if anyone was listening at the door and pulled the drapes. Then he returned to the business owner, leaned across the desk and said in a low voice: “What would you like it to be?”

  144. gunnern5 says:

    Nice one’s Rocky.

    I bumped into an (ethic) friend of mine last night and said,
    “Abe I heard your business went up in flames last night”

    He whispered “No my boy that`s happening tonight“

  145. gunnern5 says:

    I feel sorry for people that don`t drink.

    When they get up in the morning that`s as good as they are going to feel all day………………….

  146. Gooner In Exile says:

    Here’s a question…….

    Can a squad have it’s mojo restored by losing players as well as gaining them?

    We are seeing the breakup of a side that has failed to convert last season and earlier.

    Could the removal of a couple of apparently troublesome eggs actually result in a more harmonious (and therefore stronger) squad?

    I can see everyone’s point of view but as long as come August 13th we are all hoping for success rather than writing us off before we’ve kicked a ball in anger i’ll be happy.

  147. gunnern5 says:

    Fortunately I know when I`ve had enough to drink.

    I fall over…………………

  148. RockyLives says:

    My simple answer to your question is “yes”. And it doesn’t even need to be troublemakers who get moved out – just some old blood out and some fresh blood in.

    If a group of players keep exhibiting the same collective failings, there’s no guarantee that changing personnel will make things better.

    But the available evidence points to the fact that NOT changing personnel guarantees that things won’t get better.

  149. Gooner In Exile says:

    So Rocky we can lose Cesc, Samir and Clichy and be stronger …… Great! 🙂

  150. Gooner In Exile says:

    That wasn’t really serious…..but I do think last season there stopped being an enjoyment to playing the game in a few faces.

    The one thing that defined Wengers early teams, especially the Invincibles was how much they enjoyed playing, smiles on faces at being allowed to play as daringly as they could. They played with No Fear and that’s the one thing I beard Lee Dixon mention about Wengers approach that has always stuck with me.

    When Wenger said last season that something had gone in the players I assumed that is what he was referring to the fact they took the pitch fearful of what might go wrong.

  151. harry says:

    Hi GIE, I do try and be positive most of the time but it does get harder with constant press drivel and wengers / ivans promise of great activity…..

    To your question,… First Clichy going is a gain, he was a liability….

    On the subject of Fab / Nas, realistically losing 2 would be bad and we would have to replace them with at least one super quality player as wenger puts it……Personally I think Ramsey is good enough to replace cesc, out of the two I would rather keep Nasri…

    But I have a sneaky that Barca will not meet our valuation and as such Cesc will stay…….

    Would just love wenger to but just one really stella signing to get the feel good factor going, its going to be tough this year with so many negative fans out there………

  152. Rasp says:

    dandan @ 8:55

    At no point did I mention not winning anything – I don’t know where you got that from. My anger is at our failure to do the simple things well and the saccharine diatribe that the PR department dishes out – it is an insult to our intelligence.

  153. Gooner In Exile says:

    Evening Harry

    I was more thinking in the mental happiness state rather than the footballing sense. I know they would be difficult to replace in that sense but I wonder if by their removal the remaining squad could find a new found unity….”we’ll do it without them” attitude. Or will it swing to more despondency.

    Time will tell. Just wanting to see a competitive match now we’ll soon see how well placed or otherwise we are to mount a challenge.

    We’ve been more active in the market than Chelsea so far haven’t we? (Brightside 🙂 )

  154. GiE. They finished 2 places above us so we need to be (more active) really. I’m with the pessimists today although that may well change in the morning.

  155. VCC says:

    I think we are going to have to get used to seeing our programme without the names of Fabregas/Nasri/Clichy.
    I’ve tried to keep positive all summer but my patience is running out, i’ve said on numerous occasions/sites that all we need is a TOP class centre half (boring boring EVERYBODY AND HIS DOG CAN SEE THIS) I am offey with the fact that we will loose Fabregas and Nasri but I still feel we will be OK with the addition of a top class centre half and say goodbye to messers Fabregas and Nasri, we have the cover/expertise already in place to let those guys who do NOT want to play for THE Arsenal. Simples Arsene, let them go and sign the cheque for Cahill (PLEASE) then buy one midfielder to cover the lose of the two money/glory grabbing players.

  156. 26may1989 says:

    Evening all, have been able to catch up on Harry’s good write up of an event I must take my sprogs to one day, and the slightly fractious discussion on where we stand in the transfer window. Oh and the Canadian jokes…..

    Apologies for appearing to be wet about it, but I’m sort of on both sides on the discussion. The squad we have isn’t nearly as bad as many make out. Last season: best away team, top of the imaginary league of top teams, wins over Chelsea, United, Barca and City, and as late as the beginning of March were in prime position to be champions. That doesn’t happen with a poor squad.

    But the collapse in the last section was so complete, so unforced, and so psychological in nature, and the mythic albatross of the six years so weighty, that we needed the essential summer signings to be early, simple as that. Had we done that, there would be an air of confidence at the club (plus the new players would have been able to bed into the squad in pre-season).

    I have no idea whether the cause of the delayed dealings is Wenger, the Board, Gazidis or someone else, I don’t aim my fire at any individual. But between them, they have failed, even if we do make the essential signings before the end of the month. I feel guilty at thinking that, because I’m most definitely a Wenger loyalist and usually even feel pretty positive about the Board. But this was a summer like no other for the regime; no matter how pathetic and ludicrous were the fans who booed at the Emirates Cup, the regime created that possibility. That behaviour was both a measure of the insecurity of a growing number of fans and must be a cause of doubt for current players and potential recruits. They must realise that, mustn’t they?

    So, despite feeling reasonably optimistic about the coming season (we’ll overcome Udinese and will do ok in the CL; and we’ll finish in the top four, though I do think it’ll be City first, Chelsea second, United third and us fourth again), I feel very pissed off at the failure to make the defensive signings before mid-July or thereabouts. It may still turn out well, but why have we run the risks we have?

  157. 26may1989 says:

    Just seen this from an interview with Wenger:

    “Ideally I would have finished all [our business] but it doesn’t work like that. We work very hard, we are non-stop working throughout the summer. I am positive because we have good quality and a style of play that is known by the players. So we want to add not quality but super quality.”

    Q: Questioned on the reasons for the delay, Wenger revealed there were a number of issues he was having to contend with.

    A: “You have to identify the players, agree with clubs to get them out, agree the fee. That means they have to agree with you and they have to find another player before they release their players. In England, it is a lot more difficult to move during the summer because some people are not there. It’s all kinds of things you meet during the transfer market. But I can understand the impatience of people.”

    Q: Asked if Arsenal were close to a new signing, he added: A: “No, not at the moment. We hope to give you some good news soon. Next week, something might happen.”

    We can all understand it’s not easy to complete signings, but it looks a pretty lame explanation when one looks at United and Liverpool.

    But here’s hoping the suggestion of belated action is realised next week.

  158. 26
    The season kicks off next week. Nasri and fab are totally unsettled, unfocused or uncommited. We haven’t got a new defender that we definitely need. Kozzer hasn’t travelled so if TV or JD get injured squid is playing and that isn’t good enough. Gervinho and Jenkinson are fantastic buys IMO but I don’t think it’s enough to win the league and that is what we should be aiming for.

  159. Thomas says:

    “There is one very good reason why I believe few if any star players will come to Highbury, and that is that the Arsenal do everything legally. There have been a number of cases in which Arsenal have been interested in star players, and that interest has been reciprocated on the player’s side. But when it comes doewn to brass tacks, and it has been made clear that there’s nothing in it for the players themselves, then interest has suddenly melted away. Arsenal just will not pay under the counter.” -Jack Kelsey

  160. 26may1989 says:


    Hi there. First, for all of my misgivings, I’m sure that the players and the manager will aiming to win the title, just as they did last year, only for the players’ nerve to fail.

    But I do see your points re the failings, even if I don’t completely agree with your take. Who knows the truth of Nasri’s state of mind? Remember, Wenger said some time ago that we wouldn’t sell Nasri, even if that meant risking his contract running down. Strikes me Nasri may know perfectly well he’s staying. As for Kos, I read that Wenger said he should be ready for next weekend.

  161. Thomas says:

    Ooopss, sorry,, a nice and very informative post harry. thank you and thank you!

  162. VCC says:

    I too am a Wenger loyalist, but my patience is wearing thin. Do I keep faith in the Messiah or do I desert him in his hour of need?I’m a simple employee within a refinery business, but, together with ALL my family/friends/Dogs, we are crying out for an experienced Centre Half. WHY O WHY can’t (the messiah?) see this. Is he such a French obstinate/arogant/stubborn so and so, or does he know better? Most of the Arsenal supporters are not saying become bankrupt, but just purchase what the whole football world can see is a failure within our (WONDERFUL) line up.
    Come on Arsene/Gazidis/Hill Wood you cannot fool all the people ALL of the time, get your cheque book out and spend just the £20 million pounds needed for us to win the premiership. Oh and also in the process, get it back with the winners pot.

  163. Gooner In Exile says:

    Thanks for that Q&A 26. The word “super quality” tell me two things…..
    1) he’s not looking to sign Jagielka, Cahill or Samba, I think we all know they are not much better than our starting two CBs.
    2) we’re not going to sign Super quality cheaply so probably wont sign anyone.

    If Wenger signs another unknown CB like Verm or Kozzer will the fans be happy?

  164. RockyLives says:

    From this latest Wenger quote it sounds like we’ll be getting a CB next week (and probably losing Cesc too).

    Like everyone I would rather have seen it happen sooner, but I still expect some positive news before the window closes.

    And if Cesc does go, I would expect some others to step up a gear with a sort-of “we’ll show them we’re not a one man team” attitude.

  165. RockyLives says:

    GiE 🙂
    Funny how we can both read such different things into AW’s quote.

  166. Gooner In Exile says:

    I was being a little Tongue in cheek Rocky.

    I found myself getting excited that we could be getting Mertesacker, young(ish) commanding good tackler (on his feet).

    And while we’re shopping in Germany (and in fantasy land) I’d make sure we picked up Muller or Schweinsteiger as well 🙂

    On a serious note I know there are calls for us to add bite to our side it’s a shame Bellamy is at City, I’d happily take him off their hands.

  167. RockyLives says:

    I reckon we’ll get Tevez

  168. They may be aimimg for the title but what we have isn’t good enough IMO. If Nasri is going to run his contract down he’ll have a pre contract agreement in place by January with another club. I can’t see how he can be focused. Our defence isn’t good enough. Last season the league was extremely poor and an extremely average manc side won it. If one team steps up they will piss it (like the chavs should have done last season) I don’t think it’s going to be us. But don’t anyone think I don’t want us to win. I want to be wrong. I want Wenger to succeed.

  169. Jamie says:

    Harry, exactly how of am. Loyal but running out of patience.

    He needs to get a centre back. If LK6 or TV5 get injured we will struggle. He needs to sign a centre back.

    Paler available on loan next season as an extra midfielder, that’s good business.

    He needs to gt this summer right and he is taking a poker game all the way to the last weeks on two pair.

    Please don’t say we have until 31st, we have newcastle, udinese,Liverpool and man Utd. Our season could be over by then.

    Get it done Arsene. Time to do your thing.

  170. oz gunner says:

    @ 26

    great posts, and i agree with where you stand

    @ rasp

    great response to dandan. Yes i think the team is good enough but it frustrates people (and has done for a few years now, especially in the winter transfer window) to know that we are a couple players short of winning it all

    Haven’t we heard it before though from wegner? he has stated that he wanted to bring in world class players, but then by the end of the window he said there wasn’t any and the others where too pricey?!

    I just don’t like it when he says “we have to identify the players” because to me that sounds like we have no scouts! What do they do? travel the globe taking in the sights and sippin on margaritas! Should it not be the scouts who do the homework and present notes and footage to wegner? It seems united did that and got it done early!

  171. MickyDidIt89 says:

    “We have to identify players” is actually a quite terrifying comment!
    (sorry, I know you are in a different time zone and gone. You’re in April or something).

  172. Rasp says:

    Hi guys,

    The reference to ‘super quality’ is ridiculous and the sort of spin/PR that really annoys me (again and again)….. super quality costs super bucks and we don’t pay £30m + for players – so why bother even saying it.

    We’ve heard the line “we will only buy if we can find someone better than what we already have” consistently for years now and the fact is that we are having trouble offloading some of what we already have because other clubs don’t value them.

    My belief is that we will lose Cesc and Nasri and we will not bring in another player of anywhere near their status.

    On a side issue, who remembers “I’ve taken a gamble” when AW signed Bischof? OK the gamble didn’t pay off but I don’t blame him for taking it – this guy Joel Campbell would certainly be worth the ‘risk’ but I gather there are contractual and visa problems. He’d probably be another Balotelli but he would bring some excitement to the squad.

  173. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Rasp morning,
    Lets buy more strikers and have fun. Always liked the Ossie Ardiles approach. 2-3-5. Bring it on!
    Time to face facts, Arsene hates defensive players. I think he was traumatised as a defender in his youth.

  174. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Bischof was a footballer? Silly me, I thought he was a security guard or something.

  175. Rasp says:

    Morning Micky, Bischof was a pretty poor individual, Arsene rescued him from the footballing doldrums and gave him a second chance but if you remeber, he left on a free. I don’t think his career has gone anywhere since.

    I don’t know what has happened to Coquelin, he seems to be off the radar – shame because I really rated him too, but then again I was raving about Nordtveit this time last year and we sold him.

  176. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Jamie @ 1:37,
    Jeeees, Newcastle, Udinese (both, and without Nasri and RvP), Liverpool and Utd all before Aug 31!!!!
    Ok, panic has truly set in.

  177. Gooner In Exile says:

    Coquelin is playing in Columbia in the U20 World Cup along with Gilles Sunu. Both looked good the other night and both still registered with us

  178. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Bloody hell, exactly how powerful is your TV, GiE?

  179. Rasp says:

    Thanks GiE, do you think either feature in AW’s plans for the first team this season?

  180. Evonne says:

    26may @11:44 – my sentiments exactly.
    I was soooo sure that there will be early signings to pacify the fans and the players, that the disappointement is probably greater than it should be. Ok, so far we sold one dodgy player and signed 2 good ones, so all is not bad. But the Nasri/Cesc shananigans are tiresome and unsettling for all.

    Another good thing is that the Board are not being held to ransom by the loutish fans. Or is it a bad thing that they do not take the genuine supporters’ concerns on-board? Nay, it is a good thing, they know what they are doing and will not be dictated by the boo-boys

  181. Rasp says:


    I think that is unfair. To bracket supporters who feel we are not being proactive enough in the transfer market with the ‘boo boys’ is unrealistic.

    The players themselves (Cesc, Nasri, Theo, Jack and many more) have called consistently for the squad to be reinforced. The fans cannot bully the Board into anything and I agree that we should hold on for a fair price for Cesc – rumoured to be £40m.

  182. Evonne says:

    Morning Rasp – I understand what you are saying, but in my opinion the Board are not jumping guns to please the fans. I am sure they are doing what’s deemed necessary to pave the way to a successful season, given all the information that there is, not the snippets that we clutch on.

    I am nervous and impatient, but at the same time have a total faith in the Club.

  183. Red Arse says:

    I just wish the Night Owls would show some respect to the rest of us!

    How dare they, led by 26 and GIE, carry on blogging into the early hours of the morning?

    The comments are great, the points discussed are done in a civilized and considerate manner and I would love to have put my pennyworth in too.

    It is just unacceptable!!

    This late night stuff must stop — now — at least until I can change my biorythms to coincide with 26’s and GIE’s obvious nocturnal tendencies! 🙂

  184. London says:

    By the way tonight’s game is on ESPN which means a lot of pubs will have it.

    Morning all.

  185. Red Arse says:

    Morning all you lovely people. 🙂

    Evonne, I think you have the right of it.

    The Rasper has a point tho’, that the info that comes out seems to mean the fans get fed conflicting messages, and he is just so passionate and committed it is like a knife thru’ the heart.

    My message, as usual, Rasp is be patient — everything is good.
    All will be well. 🙂

    We WILL win a trophy next season — mark my words! 🙂

  186. Rasp says:

    Morning Evonne, I admire your faith and long may it last 🙂 the sands of time have been running out on my faith recently.

    As it stands at this moment we are in disarray with the start of the season less than 10 days away – morale in the squad must be affected by all the uncertainty

  187. Evonne says:

    Rasp – I don’t know about the morale, but they look happy enough to me. Again, for what we know some might be relieved that Cesc is going. We simply don’t know.

    Morning RA – don’t worry, our resident young guns will get old too 🙂

  188. Rasp says:

    Morning RA,

    The problem is that even with the transfer window still open, we are somewhere we didn’t want to be. Uncertainty over two of our best players and no significant defensive reinforcements. Of course I’ll wait and of course my support for Arsenal is unconditional, but I refuse to be conned by empty words when an inevitable outcome is looming on the horizon.

  189. Morning all

    I’m a gooner today, hopefully no building for me except I have already had to go out and buy materials for a couple of particulary dopey fencers that are working in my garden.

    I know there are some on here that are forever hopeful that Arsene and the club will do the right thing but I feel that too many things have been left to improve and it hasn’t happened. Maybe Stan is in the process of overseeing a shake-up, either way I do think that with the money that the club are turning over there should be a bit more activity inn the transfer window.

    I love Micky’s suggestion that more strikers is the answer and I reckon that as Arsene may have used all the small mobile midfielders available in the world now so bring on the Striker revolution. Tevez????

  190. Rasp says:

    Evonne, yes they look happy at training – why wouldn’t they? But what will happen when we are in a competitive game and the opposition have just equalised. They will look around at each other to find a figure who will galvanise and lead them – they did that at the end of last season and found no-one.

  191. Rasp says:

    Morning London,

    New post …. and it’s yours 😛

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