Is Arteta Lacking Bite?

It’s funny how players come in and out of favour among the faithful.

Long-time observers of all things Arsenal have said the fans always need to have someone to vent their frustration on.

Right now it seems that that someone is Mikel Arteta.

Our plastic-haired Spaniard has been written off more times recently than the Greek national debt.

He’s past it. He’s too slow. He’s not big enough to play defensive midfield. He slows down our game. He’s too conservative in his passing choices. He strangles kittens. You name it, Arteta is guilty of it.

Such short memories some people have.

Last season he was a close call for Player of the Season and was a vital component of the hard-to-beat outfit we became in the latter stages of the campaign.

This season too he has always been there to perform the duties expected of him by the manager and his team mates.

Yes, he has had some less effective games but he has also had plenty of excellent performances, controlling the transitions from defence into attack; snuffing out opposition attacks and more.

Perhaps it’s because supporters know he is not naturally a DM that – when the team generally is underperforming – some are so quick to get on his back.

If even the player himself says he doesn’t enjoy the role then surely he must be a fish out of water, a square peg in a round hole?

Well, maybe, but only up to a point. How many people reading this reckon they are good at their job? Quite a few I imagine. And how many of those would rather be doing something more exciting/well-paid/exotic for a living? All of them probably.

The point being, just because you would rather do something else does not mean you can’t be good at what you are currently doing.

In my life the Arteta-bashing is very close to home. My eldest son really has it in for him at the moment. Every time poor old Mikel does something wrong my grown-up lad is on him like a ton of bricks. Yet whenever he does something good it seems to go completely unnoticed. It’s like my son has a form of Mikel Myopia that only lets him see the bad stuff and never the good.

I’ve taken to vociferously praising the Spaniard’s positive contributions just to make the point, but my son pretends not to hear (so we have established that he’s deaf and blind… and as a 21-year-old it comes with the territory that he’s also dumb. Proper chip off the old block).

Clearly Mikel Arteta is not a Patrick Vieira – but then who is, apart from the sainted Paddy himself?

But the role Arsene asks him to play means that most of his important work is of the unspectacular kind: the dirty work – and often painful too (as his tooth-jarring exploits against Hull demonstrated).

He is not a big man so I am often surprised how effective he is at winning tackles and headers. If you look through his stats you’ll find he always wins the majority of his contested moments in games.

And when he has the ball he knows how to use it, unlike some of the more muscular defensive midfielders plying their trade in the Premier League.

We will need his experience, skill and composure if we are to end the season in the top four and with a trophy under our belt – so let’s all get behind him.




201 Responses to Is Arteta Lacking Bite?

  1. Norfolk Gooner says:

    ‘morning all, I used to hate Mondays, but now with Rocky’s excellent posts to look forward to….Oh! wait a minute, it’s Tuesday, but the post is just as good even if it is a day late. 😀

    I like Arteta, I think he’s one of our best, so much of what he does, he does quietly and efficiently. He’s not a flashy, step-over, back-heel type of player. He gets on with the job despite suffering the kicks and elbows of outrageous fortune.

    He’s not kean on his present role, but he’s good at it and gets on with it and doesn’t chuck his toys out of the pram.

    Let’s all give him the support he deserves.

  2. Norfolk Gooner says:

    Peaches, great idea about dandan’s first post on Thursday.

  3. LB says:

    The results answer all questions raised about Arteta.

    I thought he played well against Hull but there lies the rub, it was only Hull, at that level Arteta can handle himself and his role perfectly well and if we only played teams of that calibre every week all would be fine; the thing is, of course, we don’t, we also play:

    Liverpool, Chelsea and Man City.

  4. Norfolk Gooner says:

    Hi LB, OK so against the big teams we should shore up the defence a bit, play a tighter game, Plan B? 😀

  5. ai-zed says:

    I think most arsenal fans appreciate what mikel brings to the team, at least I do, but as much as I love him (and his hair) I think he gets overly exposed against fast teams, its happened on many occasions & I truly believe we need a faster alternative to mikel, I don’t know how accurate the stats on headers won is but i’d assume a taller DM would win more, most top teams have them, big, tall DMs, khedira, javi Martinez, matic, yaya, pogba, etc…..I think mikel suits our game but against some teams he just gets too bypassed for our good…..he should stay, but a new DM should be brought in…oh!….& flamini won’t be around for ever

  6. LB says:

    Hi NG

    Yep, not exactly rocket science is it?

  7. RA says:

    A lovely Post, Rocky, which is par for the course, and you so often write what I am thinking myself.

    Except —- not on this occasion. 😦

    I tend to whizz around the blogs more than I probably should, carefully avoiding one or two who suffer from headless chicken syndrome, and I feel I have the pulse of the majority of the blogs on this subject.

    If you will forgive me for filleting a part of your article, I think it is too much of a generalisation to say that;

    — “the fans always need to have someone to vent their frustration on.
    Right now it seems that that someone is Mikel Arteta.
    He’s past it. He’s too slow. He’s not big enough to play defensive midfield. He slows down our game. He’s too conservative in his passing choices.”

    You see, their are a sizeable number of fans who do say some or all of those things, but not out of any malice or in search of a scapegoat.

    In my own view, Arteta is a ‘nice’ man, a technically good player and someone who clearly cares about the team and the club.

    But there is no point in me being mealy mouthed about this. If Mikel stayed with Arsenal I would not have a problem with that. He gives a net benefit to the team that outweighs any perceived flaws.

    On the other hand, simple observation shows that he has materially slowed down in the last 18 months, and he is also very conservative in his play (and that from someone who knows sod all about a DM’s role) 🙂

    I do not see that as ‘picking on Mikel’ nor do I feel it is scapegoatism, it is being objective about a player who is coming into the twilight of his career, something has or will happen to everyone, footballer or not.

    The view I have expressed above seems to be the benevolent realisation that I have detected on other blogs, and is an acceptance that every footballers abilities gradually fade.

    I think Arteta realises this all too well, and he has gone a little further than you have intimated by saying that he does not enjoy the role he plays as a DM.

    In any walk of life, if you stop enjoying your job – get out – if at all possible. I think Mikel is thinking of bringing the curtain down, over the next couple of seasons, of on a distinguished playing career.

    So, I support Arteta, like I do all the players, I do not boo, criticise or blame them while wearing the red and white – that is unforgivable -but I cannot pretend I do not make objective assessments of what I see, not just based on an individual game, but over a prolonged period of time during the season, or perhaps longer too.

    Hallelujah — I have disagreed with the Rock, on a tiny part of his articulate Post admittedly — but I love the way it has been skilfully written and agree with 99% of the content none the less. 🙂

  8. Big Raddy says:

    RL. “Mikel Myopia” 😀

    LB 10.17 makes a very good point, MA is a fine player but we need younger, stronger and faster.

  9. Big Raddy says:

    Who would you expect to take the MU job?

    I vote for Tim Sherwood.

    Sherwood In

  10. Gööner In Exile says:

    Arteta, hmmmm, for me he does what he us asked to, and like others has struggled for a bit of form lately, it shows itself in his passing and decision making. And unfortunately because he does play that key role it all can look like his fault when in fact there are others just as culpable.

    Media pundits wondering why Moyes has been sacked today….yet just heard that he had a 6 year contract, but if they missed CL qualification he was only entitled to 1 year compensation…..makes sense he was sacked days after he could no longer qualify mathematically, had he been sacked the week before they would have had to pay him for another 5 years.


    Nice post Rocky

    I like Mikel. Hes a total professional, fighter, motivator, and has tantalising skills.

    Cant really see what hes done wrong? It seems that hes carrying the can for some of those heavy away defeats. Not quick or strong enough is often mentioned.

    I dont buy it. The way we played in those games it would have made no difference who had played his role. Lets face it, in those games for a top level club we were collectively shit.

    Mikel brings a lot to the side, but in my view his greatest asset is his ability to tick things over with intelligent crisp passing.

    Isn’t this what Wengers modern teams are all about? Move the ball quickly, retain possession etc.

    I believe next season we are capable of winning the league, and see no reason why Arteta cant be an integral part of that.

  12. kelsey says:


    as usual an excellent post and the way you have written it it appears that Arteta is beyond critism in your eyes.

    I agree with a lot of what you say especially that he is not a natural DM yet does his job efficently however I think on many occasions especially on the counter attack he slows the game down and often would prefer the sideways or even backward pass,even if others are joining the attack,so maybe he lacks vision and prefers the safer option.
    Statistically he gives away more free kicks in dangerous areas than any of our other defenders,which shows me he has lost a yard of pace.

    He is a calming influence in the team and always gives 100% but I would like to see a more influential figure who can drive the ball out of defence into attack when Arteta’s days are over.

  13. Tyona yarkwan says:

    Your post brings all of us to the fact that Mikel Arteta has been important to the Arsenal team. However, if we must move pass mediocrity, we need a better DM. He may have been that someone that the fans have picked on to vent their frustration but his performance of late doesn’t help your defence for him. It is true that most of his passes go sideways- I must add that I expect more from him given that he had played as a CAM at Everton. It is also true that he easily gets outmuscled on the ball; the arsenal vs everton game at the emirates is a typical case in point. It is a painful fact that he has become slower. His ability to read the game intelligently and anticipate attacks and dangerous balls has made him still effective in the team and I like him for that but we have got to a point where we need to strengthen our team in all the weak areas to win trophies and calm the rising wave of frustrated arsenal fans.

  14. kelsey says:

    should have read


    as usual an excellent post and the way you have written it it appears that Arteta is beyond critism in your eyes.:)

  15. Adrian says:

    Like him or not, effective as of late or not, I am sure everyone can agree that his form has been noticeably deteriorating since last season, most probably due to his age catching up on his legs. I like him as a player but if you ask me do I think that we, Arsenal FC can do better than him at the CDM position, I’d say yes. Last season, not so sure. His passing and ball distribution is neat and tidy but on the other hand his pace is horrible for a CDM, he gives out way more fouls than he should at times (tackling really isn’t a very strong forte of his) and he isn’t very strong which could pose a problem not just against the top 4 but against physical teams like stoke etc.

  16. GunnerN5 says:

    Morning all.

    Rocky, I’m in your corner with Arteta. He performs a vital role for Arsenal, he is the go to player to move the ball from defense to attack – and he is very successful in that role. His passing accuracy is one of the highest on the team, which again is vital in his role.

    He is a stay at home mid-fielder which allows our attack minded mid- fielders to go forward in the knowledge that he is taking care of their backs. He is our number one penalty taker and does a superb job.

    He has certainly lost pace and that shows in the amount of dangerous free kicks he gives away when chasing after quick players.

    All in all I want him to stay but feel that his game time will be restricted next season – but a great player to have on your bench

    Arteta doubters OUT – OUT – OUT!

  17. Demmy says:

    He is always slowing their games down. He lacks direct football, his game is never imposing. Everytime he gets the ball, he passes sideways, he doesn’t move forward with the ball.

  18. wally says:

    I like Arteta and was surprised/glad when he came on board. Good squad player at this point in his career. Brings lots of intelligence and moxy to the role.
    And if we’re to progress I’d like to see someone faster/stronger in the role. It’s a position that needs to be upgraded.
    Like a lot of our team he’s too easily shouldered off the ball and a step slow in getting back.


    Still dont buy the criticism.

    Why blame Arteta? The philosophy is Arsenes and Arteta plays it very well.

    He acts as the pivot between midfield and attack were the need for ball retention is a must.

    Artetas perceived lack of pace and strength was highlighted when been caught on the counter and the whole team was running backwards. It wasnt just him, the whole team was caught out of position.

    You could have put who ever you liked in his role against City and Chelsea away and it would have made very little difference. The whole team and game plan was undone, we should face that.

    I admire Arsenes philosophy, and believe it will reap dividends, but no style of play is perfect and at present ours has faults which need addressing, but not necessarily at the expense of Arteta.

    I appreciate the call for a fast and powerful midfield “beast”, but the way Arsene wants to play, the first call in that role is technique and intelligence.


    One last thing. Liverpool are top of the league and are playing a slowed down and 33 year old Steven Gerrard in the midfield holding role.

    Ok, its apples and pears, but it shows that with an evolving team, there might still be a place for Arteta within its structure.

  21. Norfolk Gooner says:

    Man City aren’t doing too badly and look at the age of some of their best players. Yoof ain’t everything.

  22. Rasp says:

    Excellent Rocky. I thought Arteta was our best and most important player in his first season with us. He reads the game well and his distribution and passsing is top notch. I have to agree with LB, as the years have stacked up he is exposed a bit against the top sides and when having to deal with pace.

    He’s a great guy, a great team member and definitely worth his place in the squad but I fear one more year on the clock may be too much for him to be first choice DM next season.

  23. Apologies all, dandan’s funeral is on Friday not Thursday.

  24. GunnerN5 says:


    I feel it would be disrespectful to have a regular type of post on Friday. Please us my Blast on either Thursday or Saturday.

    I believe that Friday should be started off with a post commemorating dandan, followed by blogger thoughts.

  25. Norfolk Gooner says:

    Ironic isn’t it? David Moyse lauded as “The Chosen One”, by those loyal Manc supporters, sacked after nine months in the job.

    Who chose him? Old Rednose! who’s going to choose the next one? Old Rednose? In the meantime they’re giving the job to Giggs, the guy who has been walking behind poor old Moysie sticking the knife in at every opportunity.

    You’ve just gotta larf! 😀

  26. JWP says:

    Arteta is a decent squad player. However would he get into the City, Chelsea, Liverpool, Everton or even spuds side ? The answer is no and he also gets found out when we play in the champs league.

  27. chas says:

    A fine and topical post, Rocky.

    I really detest it when someone decides they don’t like a player and then only ever see the bad things they do.
    Those sat behind us at Wembley were exactly like that with Sanogo, ignoring anything good he did and jumping on any poor touch with ‘you’re shit’ or ‘get him off’ all the friggin time.

    Your post set me wondering whether it was Arteta who needed changing or whether the current trend in slagging him off was because people want Wenger to adopt different tactics and actually play a dedicated DM.

    Looking at some Squawka stats for this season, I’m wondering if Arteta should even be classed as a DM.

    In the following performance table, Arteta is 32nd in terms of defensive ranking|season-2013/2014#all-teams#midfielder#16#43#0#0#90#17/08/2013#21/04/2014#season#21#all-matches#defense#desc#total

  28. chas says:

    Sorry that didn’t work, I’ll have to use a link shortener.

  29. chas says:

    Arteta is 32nd in defensive ranking

  30. chas says:

    98th in attacking ranking

  31. chas says:

    2nd in terms of possession

  32. chas says:

    and 15th overall

  33. RA says:

    Terry Terrapin,

    You ask, “Why blame Arteta?”, but surely no one is blaming him.

    Recognising that time and tide affect us all is to understand that we are all subject to nature’s laws — and so too with athletes – in fact more so with athletes, as the next fast, strong wannabe star is always snapping at their heels.

    Slowing down, and losing one’s energy has happened many times before, otherwise Pele, Henry and Vieira to name 6 would still be playing at their peak.

    I bet there was even a time when you had a full head of hair — but none of us blame you for being careless and losing it. It happens. 🙂

    Nope – blame does not come into it.

  34. chas says:

    If you use this premier league index, clicking on the ‘By Statistic’ tab
    and then click on ‘fouls committed’ in the ‘High Level Stats’, Arteta comes out at joint 90th behind most of the other defensive or holding midfielders in the prem.

  35. chas says:

    I presume Terry was referring to the implication that Arteta can’t cut it against the bigger teams, when in fact it was the whole team which let us down.

  36. RA says:

    Thanks, Chas, I did not make the connection.

    My comment still stands in that physical decline and blame are not synonymous and Arterta does not deserve criticism.

    He is actually a model footballer and is a great credit to himself and the club.

  37. chas says:

    Arteta played in the away games against Chelsea and Liverpool.

    He was an unused sub against City away.

    Played in home draws against Chelsea and City.

    He also played in both League and FA Cup wins against Liverpool at home.

  38. Bayonne Jean says:

    Most sobering season statistics:

    Points gained vs. Manure:

    Liverpool 6 GF 4 GA 0
    Everton 6 GF 3 GA 0
    City 6 GF 7 GA 1
    Chelsea 4 GF 3 GA 1
    Spuds 4 GF 4 GA 3

    Arsenal 1 GF 0 GA 1

  39. Bayonne Jean says:

    A last observation on Moyes: during the Everton Manure halftime TV commentary this weekend on the left side of the ocean, interesting observation attributed to Leighton Baines when asked about the difference between Moyes and Martinez: (paraphrasing)

    “In previous seasons, we always prepared for what the other side would be doing. This year, we practice on what we should be doing and what we do best.”

    Seems like a very AW-like approach….

  40. Vinay says:

    I think it is more blame for the lack of a defensive midfielder/enforcer that is directed towards Arteta.

    Mikel does his work to the best of his abilities. He was never going to be our Paddy/Gilberto. Wenger’s inability to buy a cdm has to be blamed because mikel was never going to be that and neither was song.

    Blaming Mikel is partly right but then he is doing what most of the players are, play safe, dont risk, dont try anything. The pressure on the team is immense and hence no one wants to try anything,
    It is a sad reflection of our state at the moment because this team is capable of a lot more but then they need to break the shackles first.


    Hi Redders

    Chas has got me right. My position is that tactical deficiencies and injuries cost us against some of the bigger teams this year, not Arteta or other players

    Certainly not from you, but I do feel there is a bit of a blame game going on within sections of our support.

    Admittedly its only the home games, but Arteta has impressed me this season and does not look any slower or weaker physically than in previous years, but thats just my view.

    The thing for me is our style of play and the footballing philosophy of Arsene Wenger. When things are going bad, Arteta and many others look weak and slow. When we play well our players look great.

  42. njstone9 says:

    When Arsenal signed Arteta I was deeply disappointed as I didn’t think he was the calibre of player Arsenal should be attracting.

    My best friend, an Everton supporter, reassured me that he was a seriously good player and after his first season I was really impressed by his professionalism and commitment.

    Yes he’s probably not good enough to start against the best teams anymore but that makes him perfect to rotate against weaker teams or come on as a sub. Provided of course we bring in a quality player who can dominate the middle of the park. I’d love that to be Diaby but sadly that boat appears to have sailed so we’ll need to get someone in in the summer.

    Nevertheless I’m very pleased with Arteta’s contributions to AFC and I’m glad he had the opportunity to play at the high level Arsenal could provide. His penalties and lego hair are also legendary.

  43. Adrian says:

    Interesting how this was almost exactly a year ago. How things change in a year, for all we know at this time next year we could be reading about a Diaby appreciation post. (Fingers crossed)

  44. jnyc says:

    Mikels intelligence usually puts him in the right spots,– instincts, prescience. But his passing stats have to be bolstered by sideways and back passes. Those are basically 100percent.

    You’ve seen teams cause us big problems pressing Arteta. When I say I would like a more athletic player in his position, part of that is escaping one or two pressing players, which puts us at an advantage going forward, and pressures the opponents, and takes them off the front foot. . But also maybe someone faster who can participate in attack, and retreat faster when necessary. Its not an insult to Mikel, I just want us to compete with the best teams.

    there can be players with good instincts, who play smart football, and are also very athletic, ( stronger, bigger, faster). Yes it’s alot to ask for, but it just means they cost more.

  45. chas says:

    Which players would you suggest we go after?

  46. 26may1989 says:

    Classy post, that one, well done The Rock.

    As for your son, give him a clip round the ear and tell him to learn a bit of respect for his elders. If you can reach him, that is.

    I love Arteta, he’s exactly the sort of man I like to see wearing the red and white; even with a gap in his row of teeth, he has more dignity than the whole Chelsea squad combined. But he has gone backwards this season. No shock there, professional footy is a demanding thing. He’s already dropped deeper than he played earlier in his career but it does look to me like he’s at his tipping point as far as a top-level club is concerned. He doesn’t have the range of passing that Gerrard has to compensate for the legs going, and truth be told, after attack, DM is the area of the team in which we most need to invest. Flamini is fine as back-up, but he isn’t up to taking the reins full-time.

    There are various options we could look at – for example: Gustavo (after his sabbatical at Wolfsburg), Gundogan, Khedira (Ozil’s best mate), Lars Bender, Schneiderlin, Gonalons and William Carvalho (France Football seem to think one of the last two might come to us). There’s even N17’s tweeter-in-chief, Sandro. And if he could be prised away from Juventus, there is Paul Pogba, probably the best around these days. Two I would not want would be Song (no discipline) and Wanyama (not mobile enough).

    Let’s keep Arteta, but let’s also hope a serous recruit is brought in this summer.

  47. chas says:

    As far as sideways passing goes, isn’t it the holding midfielder’s job?

    These look pretty similar to me apart from Gerrard’s contains more long passes.

  48. I think it all depends on what Arteta we have on the pitch !….the real one or the imposture !.

    Arteta the real one………….

  49. chas says:

    Sandro 😆

    Is Pogba really a defensive midfielder?
    Not from what I’ve seen which, admittedly isn’t much.

  50. Captain Black, the imposture……….

  51. chas says:

    Spot the man with no smile.

  52. 26may1989 says:

    Chas, classification is in the eye of the beholder, but Pogba generally plays from a pretty deep position. His game is certainly not only about screening the defence, but from what I’ve seen he has plenty of the destroyer in his game to qualify him as a DM.

    If Fergie hadn’t alienated Pogba, I wonder if Moyes would have been looking at his P45 today.

  53. Steve 1962er says:

    Arteta is not a DM therefore it is not his fault that he cannot cope in this role against the best teams. He is however, now too slow to cope with the ever increasing demands of the midfield role also when playing against the top teams. That does not mean that he no longer cannot do a job for the team.
    I believe that he should only be a squad player from next season, and can be used against the smaller teams like Hull, West Brom, Swansea, Tottenham etc.

    He has a great deal of experience, skill, and knowledge to pass on, but I honestly think he is out of his depth against the likes of Liverpool, Man City and Chelsea.

  54. RA says:

    Hi, 26, @ 4:14 and 4:37 🙂

    Couldn’t have put it better myself — 🙂 It’s nice to see you around, and as usual (unfortunately for someone longing for an argument) we see many things the same way.

  55. RA says:


    Don’t look at Chas’s comment at 4:02, it is sacrilege trying to take the ‘talking tactical bollix’ crown from your head.



  56. 26may1989 says:

    Gracias, Sr RA. 🙂

    Does anyone think MUFC have done the wrong thing today?

    For all his brilliance, Ferguson’s ego has a lot to answer for in terms of the mishandling of his succession. The red nosed one overrated Moyes (and assumed a like-for-like intense Glaswegian swap would work, when the United of the 1980s was so different to the United of the 2010s) and he overrated the ability of the players he bequeathed. I doubt Fergie’s views will be given much credence at Glazer Towers this time around.

    Not that I’m feeling very upset, you understand, couldn’t happen to a nicer bunch.

  57. Big Raddy says:

    I can see AW going to Southampton for our next DM – Scheiderlin ticks all the boxes, 6′, 24 y.o., good passer and tackler, lots of stamina and best of all, a German speaking Frenchman.,

  58. Big Raddy says:

    Just been reading the AA post which was highlighted by Adrian (3.34). Gus wrote a good post (where is Gus??) which prompted some fine debate

    Chas was on brilliant form in a banter with the imbecilic troll who stated that Ramsey would be playing for Reading this season!

  59. RA says:

    Terry @ 3:15

    You make a fair point, as usual. 😉

    Sometimes we play as if all the team have got stiffies and cannot run, (and who hasn’t done that) and it is usually the midfield who get over-run and look turgid, although it is difficult to know why.

    Then, magically, the same group of players, as in the Hull game, can turn on the style and look ace, and when we are in attacking mode Mikel is in his element. (I nearly typed elephant — it’s that bloody Cockie Monster warping my brain) 🙂

    I suppose what I was trying to say is that like most fans, and I think JNYC said it very well, it is not a case of castigating the current players, but we all want to see the team do well and win things, if possible, and if there are better players out there that might help achieve that end, especially if one or more of our guys starts to show signs of age related decline then we would like to buy them!! 🙂

    I said earlier that I am more than happy if Mikel stays with us, but I think that the DM position is key, and needs shoring up.

  60. 26may1989 says:

    Agreed, Raddy, Schneiderlin would be a quality signing. I didn’t realise he speaks German but should’ve realised that from his moniker.

    Could be a busy summer for us, taking account of the areas where we need to improve, as well as the strong possibility of needing to replace Sagna, Vermaelen and Fabianski.

  61. RA says:

    26, @ 4:55

    There are a couple of points I could make about the Moyes-gate affair, not the least of which is the dumb assed, graceless and classless way Manure’s owners have handled his dismissal. Yeuk.

    The other point is that Fergie was lucky not to have extended his tenure by another year – and ruined his legacy.

    Of course the cynic (aka me) might say he saw the way the wind was blowing and baled out leaving some other poor sap to carry the can.

    With the millions of pounds of compensation now lining his pockets, I do not think we need to feel too sorry for Mr Moist.

  62. Big Raddy says:

    26. Good to see you back on AA. Are you here for the FAC Final?

  63. Big Raddy says:

    RA. Once again I think this is the Ramsey and Ozil factor. Arteta looks much better when he has players running into space to pass to. Flamini is good but nowhere near as good as AR in finding spec.

    Like you I think we need a new DM but with MA as back up.

  64. Here you are Redders….a stiffy runner ( #5)….yes it`s transplant, he cant wait to get back too the loft as his Pigeons are gagging for it !. hahaha!.

  65. Big Raddy says:

    According to The Metro (???) Diaby could play at the Emirates tonight vs Chavs U-21’s !

  66. RA says:

    There is a rumoured kitty in the war chest of some £100m, and I would anticipate Arsenal will spend that if we are going to seriously keep pace with the more profligate oligarch clubs — FFP not withstanding.

    The thing that worries me (do I really mean worry? – whatever.) is that such a huge sum might give some fans unrealistic expectations.

    You see, depending on who calculated that figure (not me) and how they calculated it, we might not be able to buy all the players we might have hoped for.

    As a rule of thumb, if we bought (say) Benzema for £50m, if he was available, then we would need to double that sum for his wages for 4 years, and that would take care of £100m very easily on one player.
    And that does not sound enough.

    However, if that £100m was ‘written off’ or amortised over the 4 years of the contract, that would mean a £25m write off to P&L each year, and that would mean we could ‘buy’ 4 * £50m players in the summer, with a £100m write off.
    These things are not all about ‘cash’ despite what is said on blogs all over Arsenaldom.

    So it boils down to the accuracy of the war chest calculation, and how it was calculated when ‘a club source’ released it (unofficially) to the ever ready media boys.

  67. 26may1989 says:

    Thanks Raddy, AA habit broken by a run of work trips (I know, the internet is, well, inter, but I am a creature of habit…). But I have been checking in for a few weeks, so knew you’ve all been coping well without me – I was a bit hurt by that…. 🙂

    RA, I certainly don’t feel sorry for Moyes; he’s clearly a decent man and was good at Everton and Preston, but he should’ve known what we could all see, that despite the mystery of cruising to the title last year, United were a shell of what they had been. It beggars belief that the United board have mismanaged the handover so comprehensively, choosing the wrong man, doing so too late to allow him to have a full summer transfer window, allowing his successor to hang around to destructive effect and with so many important players getting to retirement age at the same time (or in the case of Scholes and Giggs, playing beyond their retirement ages). It seemed obvious that they didn’t need someone with potential to manage at the top level, they needed a big-headed beast of a manager, someone who would intimidate players, oppo, journos and fans alike. With so many mediocre player that wouldn’t have guaranteed success, but they’d have had a chance.

    Bothered? No. But looking at our succession issues, while we are certainly not United (in the good and bad senses), I very much hope that Gazidis and Kroenke are looking very closely at what has happened at Old Trafford this year. There but for the grace of God…..

  68. RA says:


    I loved the man with ‘no smile’ photo. What a good fellow Arteta is to allow the micky take.

  69. Arteta has done an excellent job for Arsenal. Of course he will need replacing, but he should be appreciated and supported for what he has given us. He is a great pro and hopefully will remain part of our squad for the next season.

  70. 26may1989 says:

    Christ, I hate reading the name Diaby…….

  71. RA says:


    It’s you!! 🙂

  72. 26may1989 says:

    And Raddy, I have managed to blag a ticket for the FA Cup Final – since only some season ticket holders are guaranteed Wembley tickets, I went begging to a client who has a box there. Looking forward to it.

    You going? Any other AAers?

  73. 26may1989 says:

    RA, before we laud Arteta too much for being a good sport for the toothy pic, we should probably check the photos that followed that one. Perhaps Mikel’s restrained smile was followed by a sense of humour failure, lego being thrown out of the pram etc.

  74. MickyDidIt89 says:

    It is plain wrong to refer to Mikel as Lego Man due to his hair.

    Until Saturday, I always had him as more Subuteo Man. That was until we hit our favourite surf bar in Cornwall for the Full English after Friday night camping.

    While the bacon sizzled, we hit the table football, and lo, there he was in my left hand. Little Mikel. He’s a table footballer through and through. No arguments.

    He took a pay cut to join us, I think. Now, that is style. Love the bloke. Sure we need a big fast defensive midfielder, but I still love the guy.

    Thank you Rocky.

  75. RA says:

    26 @ 5:40

    Spot on sir, in all respects.

    Their prime mistake was allowing Fergie to recruit his own replacement. Bad, bad, bad.

    Arsene has already said he would not be involved in recruiting his own successor (long before this blew Moyes debacle up).

    I imagine we will employ a top notch firm of head hunters to do the donkey work once Arsene decides to call it a day, and he will go, it is just a question of when he chooses to do so, and they will produce a short list of suitable and willing, quality managers for the Board to choose from.

  76. RA says:

    (long before this blew Moyes debacle up)

    Right words, just choose your own order for them! 🙂

  77. VCC says:

    Cockie….No.5 That really is Stretch. If not its his double.

  78. LB says:

    Scheiderlin: this is a clever call.

    Good to read your comments again 26.

  79. kelsey says:

    I knew Diaby was only 15,just grew quickly as a lad 🙂

    I go along with your conspiracy theory RA about SAF going out on top and then knowing United were going to hit an iceberg.

  80. Big Raddy says:

    26. Sadly not. The first FA Cup Final I have missed since 1971. I seem to have got my work/life/football balance out of kilter in the merry month of May 😦

  81. ai-zed says:

    I agree with you BR, on Morgan S as a good option for DM, Southampton play a somewhat similar brand of football as we do so I don’t think he would have issues blending, & like you said he ticks all the boxes, but at the end of the day our “scouts” could point the finger at someone entirely unexpected, hoping for a much more active TW this time around

  82. RA says:

    You could be correct re a sense of humour failure for Lego Man, but I was impressed that he let his hair hang from the hook behind him, rather than let it down! 🙂

  83. RA says:

    Schneidrlin is a Gooner! Well an Arsenal admirer, at least.

    Good call, Raddy.

  84. Big Raddy says:

    Cockle 5.34. That is Genius.

  85. 26may1989 says:

    Good to see you too, LB.

    Three of the best central midfielders in the PL this year have been Fernandinho, Henderson and Matic. One thing those three have in common is covering a hell of a lot of ground, from the first minute to the last. That quality is incredibly important, even more so now than a few seasons ago. For all his ability, having an ageing Arteta slows us down, and I do think that is a problem.

  86. Yes VCC !…..I thought you would recognise that running style from when he was running from your back door !. hahaha

  87. RA says:


    Dennis really is GOD and i have seen it on your vid!! 🙂

  88. kelsey says:

    Hi 26th.

    Do you think AW will stay or not .

  89. RA says:


    Matic used to play for the Chavs, so that may have influenced the price they paid to re-recruit him, but allegedly he only cost them £6m, and he is a technically gifted 6′ 4″ work horse.

    Wish we had him.

  90. Big Raddy says:

    ai-zed. S’ton team are going to be decimated if the big PL clubs get their way. Lallana and Shaw to MU and perhaps the CB Lovgren – who is top quality. And then Scheiderlin and Clyne to us etc etc

  91. RockyLives says:

    Hello Everyone 🙂

  92. arnie says:

    Great stuff, Rocky. And what fantastic discussion as well. You know you spoil us all with these crafty, teasing posts that generate fantastic discussion. Well played, Sir. 🙂

    My tuppence bit? Same as what everyone worthwhile on here has already said. Arteta is a valuable member of the current team. Get off his back. Back him with all your heart for the next 4 games.

    Same as everyone else wearing the shirt. Other things can wait one month. 🙂 🙂 🙂

    COYG. 🙂

  93. ai-zed says:

    I agree BR, its the way of the football world, some years back & we would have been wondering which of Ramsey, koscielny, or cazorla would be taken next, its a dog eat dog world out there, just ask Dortmund… wouldn’t be such a bad thing if we joined the top of the food chain……do you think by the way that fellaini would have suited Martinez if he hadn’t moved? just asking as he was wished for by some of us last season in the DM position

  94. RA says:

    Go away, Media Molehill, thou sower of dissension and stuff!!

  95. RockyLives says:

    Some interesting insights into our Mikel. There is clearly a bit of a divide about him.

    I think Chas’s stats show he gives away fewer fouls than most DMs. Also, I remember when we used to moan about the fact that none of our players would make a ‘clever’ foul in midfield when an oppo player got free.

    And as for pointing the finger at him for the heavy away defeats… why him? Why not the fullbacks playing as strikers? Why not the other midfielders who had disappeared up the pitch when the likes of Liverpool and the Chavs attacked us?

    Again (thanks Chas) he played in our much better performances against the top clubs at home – so saying he can play against lower teams but can’t hack it against the biggies doesn’t stack up. Or at least, no more than it does against all the other Arsenal players who played in the heavy defeats.

    I agree that speed is not his forte and I would not dispute that there are better players than him in world football for the DM role but for me he’s a very solid and reliable presence – and one we might miss more than some people think.

  96. RA says:

    Hi arnie,

    You said;

    — “My tuppence bit? Same as what everyone worthwhile on here has already said.”

    Am I ‘worthwhile’ or am I a professorial teaser? 🙂

  97. RockyLives says:

    Redders 🙂

    It’s nice to disagree with you about something 🙂

    In further support of my Arteta love-in, I liked GiE’s point that the return of Ramsey and Ozil made Arteta look better as well as making OG look better.

    However, I will generously concede that in a struggling team he is not the man who will grab the game by the scruff of there neck and lead us to glory.

    In a well-running team however…

  98. Big Raddy says:

    ai-zed. We might have been calling for Fellaini but Mr Wenger is much cleverer than us (though not the Troll) and saw a man who slows down play. I still think Fellaini could have done a job for us but the boat has sailed.

    As to Martinez. Barry would not have signed, would he?

  99. JM says:

    @Big Raddy April 22, 2014 at 5:02 pm

    Arsenal were in for Morgan Schneiderlin (when he was with RC Strasbourg) before he opted to join Southampton – to further develop himself as a player (coming from abroad) and to have more first team playing chances/ time.

    (Coincidently, Schneiderlin is from Obernai, Alsace region; Wenger is from Strasbourg, Alsace region)

    A coming summer bid may be prompted.


    Arteta should still be our player in the coming season. He is a converted offensive midfielder to a defensive one – much similar to what Andreas Pirlo & Bastian Schweinsteiger have gone through. However, Pirlo has the protection from Arturo Vidal & Paul Pogba/Claudio Marchisio in centre midfield; while Schweinsteiger has Javi Martinez/ Phillip Lahm as his partner in double pivot. Their partners are defensive lynchpins and all-round combative players in their prime.

    It is not solely Arteta’s fault in the protection of our defensive third. Our team plays with a 2-men defensive shield(double pivot) in front of the back four; the defensive responsibilities are shared between them.
    Ramsey & Wilshere have been missing through injuries; Flamini played too willfully at times, getting cautioned, and had to temper his aggression thereafter during a match; Rosicky, Ozil & Cazorla are more offensive midfielders; The Ox has much to learn on the defensive side of things when playing in centre midfield.

    If Arsene/our team do revert to a single shield (1-man demolition team) in front of defence next season, only the very best in their business should we be looking into: (Busquets, Martinez, Sven Bender*, Khedira)

    * Lars Bender is more in the box-to-box combative midfielder (as are Vidal, Pogba, Matuidi, Ramires, Yaya Toure, Strootman, Witsel etc). Though in my opinion, his future lies playing as a RWB/RB in club and national team. (i.e. like Lauren who was converted from defensive midfield to right back by Arsene).

    My personal picks from abroad?
    Borussia Mönchengladbach’s trio of Tony Jantschke(RB/CB), Christoph Kramer(CM/DM – on loan from Bayer Leverkusen) and Max Kruse (FW/AM). Settled.

  100. arnie says:

    Welcome back 26may. Your absence has been seriously felt.

    “Does anyone think MUFC have done the wrong thing today?” Well, I do. First they made the wrong choice of appointing a nobody from another PL club. Some nobody like Moist or Martinez or whatever. Something that I think we will never do.

    Choosing a manager takes a lot of work, substantially more than scouting a player. Because a manager in a traditional PL club is supposed to stay for 15 years or more. Because a manager needs to have a vision of where the club will be in a decade’s time. No place for myopic numpties!

    Second, having chosen him, Moyes should have got more time. Time and opportunity and resources to take the club to that level in a decade’s time. That would have been classy. That will be Arsenal style, not for the also rans like ManUre.

    Shameful. A disgrace!!!!!! 😦

  101. arnie says:

    You are a nice friendly teaser Redders, you do manage to get under my skin sometimes, but only for a few moments. Professional teaser! No. 🙂 worthwhile, I think so, dont you? 😛

  102. Big Raddy says:

    RL. GIE makes enough good comments without giving him one of mine (5.27) !

  103. arnie says:

    Cockie: fantastic. dont know about you chums, I am excited. 🙂

  104. RA says:


    I think overall the view of Mikel has been been broadly supportive, and there is genuine appreciation of his qualities and contributions to the cause.

    No real dissension that I can see. 🙂

  105. LB says:

    Quality comment JM, superb read.

  106. Keep checking on that link, arnie, as it will give you regular updates of the game once it has started !.

  107. ai-zed says:

    and to think the majority of comments about Barry to arsenal where negative, but well…..we got the flame!!!!

  108. RA says:


    You will get used to me! — Not sure you will always appreciate my humour tho’ because Cockie has ‘fiddled’ with me! 🙂

  109. RockyLives says:

    Oops – sorry BR 😳

  110. Big Raddy says:

    JM. Fine comment. A top quality one-man shield would be best

  111. RockyLives says:

    Oh bloody hell RA… come and have an argument!

  112. arnie says:

    We want arguments!!!!!! 🙂

    Redders. 🙂

  113. RockyLives says:

    Now don’t you start arnie or I’ll start disagreeing with you too.

    In fact – I do disagree!

  114. arnie says:

    Cockie: 🙂

  115. 26may1989 says:

    Hi kelsey. My guess is Le Prof will stay, at least for one more year, but if the club thought they could get this summer what looks like being the neatest successor for us, ie Roberto Martinez (and not risk losing out next summer), that could be a gamechanger.

    And hello to arnie too. I’m not sure agree that a manager should be assumed to be around for as long as 10-15 years, but I absolutely agree that any manager has to have a long-term view. For a club like ours (big but not at the mega club level with Barca, Real, Bayern and United), that is incredibly important – it wouldn’t take much for us to slip back, and having a short-termist manager (Redknapp comes to mind) could be a disaster.

    But for all that United clearly screwed up in how they replaced Fergie, I do think they’ve made the right decision today. Just as Dein was right to sack Rioch after one year and replace him with Wenger, so it must also be right for United to draw a line under what was clearly a mistake.

  116. arnie says:

    Rocky: I disagree as well! 🙂

  117. arnie says:

    26: yes, 10-15 years was an exaggeration, but yes, you got the idea right. And yes, I disagree. 🙂

  118. arnie says:

    Arsenal U21 against Chavs
    Macey, Jenkinson, Ajayi, Pleguezuelo, Ormonde-Ottewill, Hayden, Diaby, Olsson, Bellerin, Toral, Akpom
    Subs: Huddart, Moore, Zelalem, Maitland-Niles, Ansah

  119. Big Raddy says:

    Best of luck to Abou tonight. I really really want him to get back into the first team squad after such a horrific run of bad fortune

  120. RA says:

    I disagree with Rocky and arnie disagreeing.

    Now that 26M is back there is no need to argue with anyone – he is the man.

    Trouble is he can be so logical and sensible that I have to pick my moment, and I am hoping that the ‘imminent’ FFP ruling on Citheh and PSG among others will provide the background — although I might have to act as an agent provocateur.

    Rocky OUT —– Rocky’s Son IN —— Micky and Kels OUT OUT OUT

  121. RA says:

    Raddy @ 6:47

    Me too. Me too. Come on Big Man — ignore 26M. 🙂

  122. RA says:

    And – finally, I really rate young Macey the U21 goalkeeper!

    He is going to be the biz – one day! 🙂

    Nite fellas!!

    Rocky OUT – again, and while we are at it – Raddy OUT, OUT, OUT

  123. stevepalmer1 says:

    ,Evening all, Nice one Rocky.
    Bit surprised by this Post, As most of the comments Previously since i have been logging in, seem to be against criticising The Manager and any of the players. What i seem to feel is that many would rather Arsenal tick over and hopefully, should they make top 4 and even win a cup why rock the boat.

    One or two have said that they are not prepared to even talk about change until the season is over. Now i believe that is every bodies right,, they choose to discuss only certain subjects.. That kind of discussion makes for limited discussion.

    Personally i like this kind of Post, Rocky seems to support Arteta, and the post reflects that. But what i feel Rocky is asking us, is Arteta good enough to get another season with us.

    My view on this reflects back on what Arsene himself said, and that is we will only bring players in who are better than what we have. I feel that Arteta has been a very good player for us but i have to ask myself could we have better, and i feel we could.

    Arteta came in and did a job for us and has done it well, but he is now getting on and his pace seems to have slowed for me, Whatever his stat’s may say i still think we could do better.

    I could of course say the same thing about several of our players, and some times i worry that we have let better players go than what we brought in.

    Van Persie was allowed to leave and we bring in Sanogo. Now this young man may come good but he hasn’t shown that yet. We were left with Bendtner and Giroud who rolled together would not make a Van persie.

    Ashley Cole left and we had Clichey I’m sorry, i didn’t feel Clichey was better, then he left and we had Gibbs, at that time Gibbs was also not better.

    The situation we see ourselves in now, Looks like we may lose Sagna, Is Jenkinson better, Fabianski looks like he may be off and i believe he is better than Czezesney and now Arteta who takes over from him… .

  124. JM says:

    Under the heading, “Will AW build our team around Ozil for the next 2-3 years?”, written by RC78

    JM says:
    April 10, 2014 at 6:00 pm

    It is an unusual case for our club and manager this time round, where previously his contract (with regular renewal in every 3-years) has been sought out and announced officially in the early part/before each season started.

    Nothing more, nothing less.

    Although, there might be a “strong element” of a “perculiar” sort haunting behind the scenes. Who could that be? It’s anyone guess.

    A quote from somewhere.
    “Mein Ziel ist es, ein Top-Team in der Premier League zu trainieren”, sagte er deutschen Bild-Zeitung. “Ich habe nie die Atmosphäre erlebt in England.”

    [end quote]


    I rate his situation in the balance.
    Liam Brady left his youth coaching role to become our club ambassador, Terry Burton is leaving. Most of his backroom staff (Bould, Banfield, Primorac, Peyton, Colbert, G.Lewin, O’Driscoll) have either similar contracts due renewal or they leave for free this summer.

    Andries Jonker is arriving from Wolfsburg; Frans de Kat and Jan van Loon will also join up this summer in the youth academy “re-organisation”.

    Changes …
    [End quote]

    And the Dutch news “Voetbal International” wrote today (1 1/2 weeks later):

  125. arnie says:

    Steve: I am listening even if my mouth is shut. 😛

    JM: There is some reason to the madness! I am following as well. 🙂

  126. chas says:

  127. stevepalmer1 says:

    I know Arnie, 🙂 We bounce our views off one another, and in that way the experience we have enlightens us all. 🙂

  128. arnie says:

    Arsenal U21 1-0 ahead. Bellerin scores. 🙂

  129. arnie says:

    steve: 🙂

  130. Big Raddy says:

    Chelsea have 11 men in their own half. I hate mourinho’s tactics.

    What is the point of buying quality players and asking them to play hoofball

  131. RA says:

    Klopp has ruled himself out of the Manure job, but his brother, Klippity, has said he is up for it!

  132. Big Raddy says:

    Awful game. I am giving up

  133. RockyLives says:

    Redders 🙂

    Guardiola has ruled himself out too – but his brother Gorgonzola might be in with a sniff…

  134. RockyLives says:

    How has Diaby been looking?

  135. RA says:

    Well, his lipstick is a bit on the garish side, Rocky, but you would like his cute little pink boots. 🙂

  136. RA says:

    I know nozzink Rock — I am relying on barmy arnie for the U21 score, but he has gone into hiding. 😦

  137. Thanks Rocky for the post. I think Arteta has been practically perfect in most of our games. In the games where we’ve collapsed, we’ve collapsed big time and he’s not always been on the pitch. I think we need someone faster and stronger but then we’ve needed one of those in that position for a few years now. Not really his fault.

  138. ai-zed says:

    Diaby was taken off @ half time, & chelShit have gone ahead 1-2 BOLLIX!!!!

  139. Chelsea are so boring, how on earth can Roy Keane and our very own Lee Dixon be excited by that first half performance?

  140. RA says:


    Diaby lasted 45 mins for the U21s, and the Chavs equalised in the 68th min through Baker. are giving some info.

  141. RA says:

    Oops, al-zed is right. 😦

  142. ai-zed says:

    full time, ars 1- 2 chl

  143. stevepalmer1 says:

    Manchester United situation.

    Ageing players
    Manager Retires not up for a rebuild.
    Picks a replacement who has bundles of Premier experience but who has little experience of Champions League or trophies.
    Takes over but realises that his best player wants out and other players are frightened of their positions.
    Buys a friend from old club, and pays out fortunes to keep his star player.

    Then finds out players don’t like him and doesn’t like his idea’s.
    Same team that wins the league the previous season but now won’t play for new Manager.

    Arsene Wenger has new 2 year contract reported and press realise Wengers job is probably safe, so turn their interest to Manchester.

    Still players asking to leave and play poorly, bad results mean Supporters revolt.

    Manchester team report 200 million transfer pot for new season but are unimpressed with Managers signings.

    Biggest club in the world have decided Manager is not the man to spend 200 million so sack Manager before the season ends and puts in inexperienced Veteran player with absolutely no managerial experience.

    Take on brand new Manager who probably has no Premier experience and let him spend 200 million hoping he can make them winners again.

    And this is the biggest club in the world.

  144. arnie says:

    hmmm, so the young Gunners lost! 😦

  145. chas says:

  146. chas says:


    Utd should never have appointed Moyes in the first place. That signing was like a managerial appointment you saw in the1980s of a dour Scot. They might as well have appointed Midge Ure.

    What makes it worse though is there appoinment of Snidey Ryan Giggs. That man is sneakier than a Roman Emporer from ‘I Claudias’

    Giggs will no doubt use his new position to immediatly identify if any players are related to him, and then of course have sex with there wives.

    Once discovered, Giggs will feel remorse, but only because not all the Utd players were his kin.

    The Glaziers are complete Tossers, milking Utd dry with there buy out loan against the Club. They only survived off the back of Ferguson and the unfortunate fact that Utd fans are as thick as Forest Gumps thickier brother.

    For this reason I feel no sympathy for Utd supporters. I hope Giggs shags all there wifes, the Glaziers nick all there money, and when they get arroused they quickly flop after having a mental image of Moyes.

  148. LB says:


    That is such a juicy comment. Could we really be lucky enough that manu become as much of a managerial laughing stock as Tottenham.

  149. LB says:

    Diaby — Under 21?

    Wow, he must have gone through some kind of rehabilitation.

    Hot damn, I’m gonna get me some of that.

  150. arnie says:

    LB: Two outfield senior players are allowed, plus GK. The plan was to give Diaby and Jack some game time. But Jack was not ready yet. 🙂

    How about Diaby as a midfield enforcer next year? 😛

  151. 26may1989 says:

    0-0 is a poor scoreline when playing away first in two legs: one slip in the return game and you’re suddenly up against it. Here’s hoping Chelsea get their karmic deserts next week.

  152. neamman says:

    Lets give ALL Arsenal players the support they deserve!!!!!!

  153. arnie says:

    neamman. 🙂 🙂 🙂

  154. RockyLives says:

    Abou is a big lad but I’ve never seen him as a DM. He seems more forward-minded to me.

  155. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Happy St Georges Day All

    Love this day .Puts me in the mood to go out and….errrr..

    Slay something

  156. JM says:

    We might get one of these star players next season.

    It is about marketing image rights, investments and promotions, new kit sponsorship deal, future partnership – by PUMA SE – to Arsenal FC.

    Players from Arsenal sponsored by PUMA SE:
    (1) Mikel Arteta
    (2) Santi Cazorla
    (3) Nacho Monreal
    (4) Olivier Giroud
    (5) Bacary Sagna
    (6) Mathieu Flamini
    (7) Tomas Rosicky

    Former Arsenal players sponsored:
    (1) Thierry Henry
    (2) Gael Clichy
    (3) Gilberto Silva
    (4) Emmanuel Eboue
    (5) Alexander Hleb
    (6) Luis Boa Morte
    (7) Cesc Fabregas
    (8) Johan Djourou
    (9) Emmanuel Frimpong

    Players on the hit list next season, sponsored by PUMA SE:
    (1) Asmir Begovic (Stoke)

    (2) Dante (Bayern Munich)

    (3) Radamel Falcao (Monaco)

    (4) Adam Lallana (Southampton)

    (5) Antoine Griezmann (Real Sociedad)

    (6) Marco Reus (Dortmund) – though Dortmund are PUMA SE’s main sponsored club in their homebase, Germany.

    (7) Roman Weidenfeller (Dortmund) – though Dortmund are PUMA SE’s main sponsored club in their homebase, Germany.

    (8) Mario Balotelli (AC Milan) – in addition, Fly Emirates sponsors PSG too.

    (9) Giorgio Chiellini (Juventus)

    (10) Marco Verratti (PSG) – in addition, Fly Emirates sponsors PSG too.

    (11) Rui Patricio (Sporting Lisbon) – though Sporting are PUMA SE’s sponsored club in Portugal.

    (12) Eduardo Carvalho (Braga)

    (13) Joao Pereira (Valencia)

    (14) Cesc Fabregas (Barcelona) – pending Barcelona’s transfer ban appeal. Fabregas to take over from Arteta eventually, should he return? (AW’s view/vision)

    (15) Stephan Lichtsteiner (Juventus)

    (16) Diego Benaglio (VfL Wolfsburg) – where Andries Jonker is Assistant coach in.

    And lest we have any doubts in PUMA SE’s indirect participation on our upcoming transfer window, they already make their “presence” somewhat felt this season.

    (1) Emiliano Viviano – on loan from Palermo (club is sponsored by PUMA SE)
    (2) Ignasi Miquel – on loan at Leicester City (club is sponsored by PUMA SE)
    (3) Joel Campbell – on loan at Olympiacos (club is sponsored by PUMA SE)
    (4) Damian Martinez & Benik Afobe – on loan at Sheffield Wednesday (club is sponsored by PUMA SE)
    (5) Park Chu-Young (no club wants this guy!) – on loan at Watford (club is sponsored by PUMA SE)

    Newcastle United, Borussia Dortmund, VfB Stuttgart, Bordeaux, Rennes, Sporting Lisbon, Rubin Kazan, Olympiacos, AEK Athens, RCD Espanyol are some of the clubs associated with PUMA SE.

    And then there is Arsenal’s sponsorship link with Fly Emirates, which also has its projects at Real Madrid, PSG, AC Milan, Hamburger SV.

    We got Mesut Ozil from Real Madrid (when they entered a new partnership deal with Fly Emirates starting this season; it’s partially right to say that the Ozil transfer fee from us to them is sort of “redirection of transfer funds” indirectly from Fly Emirates via Arsenal to Real Madrid)

    We loaned and sold Johan Djourou to Hamburger SV.

    Club dealings with AC Milan & PSG beckons in the coming season. (as those with Real Madrid and Hamburger SV continues)

    There is/will be something going on between Arsenal FC, Fly Emirates and PUMA SE this coming summer. Hopefully, big announcements.


    I know the above ought to be something for a headline post (especially when this season concludes). I might be not frequently online in close season (with WC2014 coming, getting more busy in summer with work, moving around places etc), so I’ll just get this out right here and now.

    Thanks for reading.

  157. chas says:

    Slay a mythical creature.
    When you say ‘mythical’ it makes you sound pithed.

  158. White Bear says:

    I said earlier that if Chavs win the CL I can see myself being very depressed. Well, I don’t think that any longer. John Terry is injured so if the Chavs win we will all have a pleasure of seeing that twat in full kit collecting the trophy, should be a laugh 🙂

    They were disgusting last night. Fouling, wasting time, diving. I HA-TE them with passion

  159. kelsey says:

    Morning all.

    Well I know semi finals can be cagey affairs but that was real dross and the smugness (if there is such a word) on mourinho’s face at the end made me nearly throw up.

    His plan worked using every conceivable trick in the book but what surprised me more was how woeful Athletico played,and they are top of La Liga.
    The match is not over but with Cech,Terry,Lampard and Mikel out anything could happen, but unfortunately one has to fancy Chelsea.

    Anyone see the resemblance between Ashley Cole and Issac Hayes. Sure chas can find a picture 🙂

  160. White Bear says:

    you are right Kelsey. it was a poor poor game; tonight could be a thriller though. I think I don’t want to see Bale and Ronaldo celebrating, so it’s Bayern for me

  161. White Bear says:

    how is DidIt going to move the pigs to the house?Will je have to walk them across Cornwall 🙂

  162. RA says:

    Go slay a mystical, mythical critter then Micky. 🙂

  163. Gööner In Exile says:

    Kelsey listening to radio pre match it seemed most expected a dour affair as Simeone is known for playing a very similar style to Mourinho.

    I was surprised ITV bothered with a highlights package.

    But that’s Maureen for you, all day I heard how Moyes had been too defensive at ManUre and that was his downfall, yet so many pundits said Maureen would have been the right man, well I guess he put a few people right last night.

    I’d say the love affair is starting to be over between the British media and him though, finally they are bored of his ramblings.

  164. chas says:

    Andre Marriner said he couldn’t tell them apart.

  165. chas says:

    Abramovich must be thinking, ‘ half a billion quid and I still have to watch dogshit’.

  166. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Blimey JM,

    that’s some work.

    out on interest, who sponsors the likes of Theo, Rambo, Ox, Jack, BFG, Kos, Bac and so on. Must be a rival interest, and I’m also guessing this refers to boots only. Am I right?

  167. White Bear says:

    GiE – I read some articles in the press on Monday discussing Maurinho’s performance against Sunderland. I was delighted to see the knives are out for him, he got what he deserved – kicking in the arse

  168. chas says:

    Do sponsors really have that much influence that they can be crucial in transfers?

    How about Schneiderlin, Pogba and Balotelli as our summer transfer shopping list?

  169. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Are we sending anything to dandan’s funeral?

    I’ll email Her Ladyship.

  170. chas says:

  171. chas says:

  172. Big Raddy says:

    Morning All,

    The only benefit of watching last night’s rubbish was I as already half asleep when I went to bed.

    BUT, it is somewhat hypocritical of us to moan about Jose when we won trophies playing the same way under GG – or has anyone forgotten the Wembley games vs Sheffield Wednseday or the Parma final or One Nil to the Arsenal etc etc

  173. chas says:

    Yeah, but that Parma squad cost ten bob, a mangy cat and a Wimpy to assemble.

  174. kelsey says:

    I thought Simeone would be better conducting an orchestra 🙂


    The reason Morinio hates Arsene so much is he knows that Abramovitch hankers for him. Probably sends him love letters and lets out a groan when he sees him.

    Abramovitches ego wants exciting football and some one to teach him table manners, not the eye poking Moriono who takes his handkerchief to the toilet.

    Morinios days are numbered.

  176. Not forgetting we beat Mansahfter in the 1005 FAC Final……….did we have a shot on target in the whole game apart from the penalties ?. They really deserved to win that game, shame really !. hahaha

  177. hahaha even in 1005 AD we were boring Arsrenal !.

  178. Is Didit moving to Cornwall ?……….has he had my permission ?……bringing pigs and cats as well trying to gain acceptance with the locals by offering sexual favours !.

  179. arnie says:

    Motning all.

    Nice discussion. 🙂

    Rocky: About Abou, I said midfield enforcer not DM. Somebody who snatches balls away from opposition possession and moves forward. Yaya style, box to box forward moving player. 🙂

    JM: Great work. Why dont you organise this into a post and send to NUTS? I am sure Rasp/Peaches can post it on your behalf some day that you are a bit less busy. 🙂


    Cornwall, when we were boring we done it with class. There was something strangly alluring about our long ball game that made women swoon and men envious.

    A long ball from Oleary to Quinn would put people on a high for days.

  181. arnie says:

    Cockie: If you rub Micky the wrong way, he will let his pigs loose in front of your vehicle. 🙂

  182. arnie says:

    Boring boring Chavs.

  183. arnie, if you rub Micky up the wrong way he ends up with a mini surf board in his pocket !……..add some Beech Boys music and you`re well away !. hahaha

  184. arnie says:

  185. arnie says:

    WordPress driving me crazy. Not allowing me to post comments.

    Cockie: 🙂 🙂 .

  186. kelsey says:

    I am glad you mentioned that arnie as I and a few others are having the same problem.The page keeps jumping allover the place.

  187. RC78 says:

    Besides Arsenal, I am a huge fan of PSG as it is my home team. I remember Arteta joining us when he was a young player and in his season with us, he did not disappoint us, except when he left us to join…Scotland! Arteta has always had this ability to carry the ball forward and he is a really good midfielder but although he has tried his best to grow into this role, he is not a Defensive Midfielder. He is doing “OK” there because he has a decent tactical sense but he is not providing enough cover for the back four. I do like Arteta but again,
    – I do not believe that we are using him as effectively as possible since he is more of a Central Mid then a Defensive Mid and;
    – I do not believe that he will ever be a good enough DM;
    – I do not believe that the team would miss him greatly if he left as we have Ramsey, Wilshere and Rosicky that can play Central Mid.

    He is deputizing in the DM role because we have failed to bring in someone in at this position and he has done “ok”. Anyways, he is a good player but I am of the opinion that we should sell him and try to bring in a real DM that would be able to provide good cover for our back four and allow Ramsey and Wilshere to move a bit more freely going forwards…

  188. RC78 says:

    @ Chas: How about Schneiderlin, Pogba and Balotelli as our summer transfer shopping list?

    – Schneiderlin would be a good option although not the best one as DM but will definitely do the job.

    – Pogba – he is release clause is too high and he is monitored by Real and PSG who have the financial muscle to actually snatch him away from Juve. I do not think that he will Juve though – he is quite happy and settled, learning from Pirlo and having a good partnership with Vidal

    – Balotelli – why not? I am not against it but I would be much happier if we went after his teammates Abate and El Sharawwy 🙂

  189. Morning all

    We have a New Post …………….

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