Theo or Yarmo ….. Arsenal need width

The silly season is fast approaching with the rumour mill beginning to engage its cogs and whirly things in an effort to ratchet up the intensity of the potential player offerings and to make the driest mouth salivate as if sucking a lemon.


Your correspondent in recent times has had a particular interest in a tall, tricky and speedy winger named Yarmolenko, who might well be a replacement for Theo, should his imminent contract talks fail to ignite his desire for more dosh to count when next he is injured.

Some of you may think I have a personal agenda or that it is wishful thinking on my part as I have mentioned, once or twice or perhaps many times, that I think it may suit both Arsenal and Theo best if he moves on – but my agenda, if it exists, interests no one but myself.

No! I do not have a ‘thing’ about Theo, he is a nice guy. The sort who you would not mind your daughter bringing home to meet you, if you had a daughter, and Theo was not already married.

The fact is that Theo has been with the Gunners for about 9 years now, and, it seems, is always prevented from reaching the level his early career potential promised, mainly because of injuries or, lately, an inability to find a place in the team.

A new club, a new team, a new manager elsewhere in the Premier League, or Europe, may be the solution and could well re-charge his batteries and give him the impetus he needs to show the world what he can do.

Of course it would be naive to ignore the fact that there are, and will continue to be, many other fans who will disagree with that opinion – but so be it.

I recently read that another tasty, fleet footed winger, who I really rate, has also appeared on the rumour grapevine, well they all do, eventually, and he is someone who has allegedly turned down other offers at the moment, including one from the Spuds, as he hopes to achieve his own ‘dream’ or ambition of playing for Arsenal, and his name is Konoplyanka from Dnipro.

A rough count of the rumoured interest in players by Arsenal, or interest in Arsenal by players has reached about 30, so far, and the only disappointment I have is that Matuidi has not declared his annual love for Wenger and Arsenal yet.

But enough of my idol musings, what rumours excite you? Do they make any sense?

It is also counter-rumoured that Wenger will not buy anyone this summer. The logic being that he has said that he does not want anyone to go in the transfer window. Le Coq has impressed him enough for him not to want to pursue Kondogbia or Gonalons.

But what about back-up you squeal in unison? Well the youngster Bielik is being groomed to become the new midfield enforcer, and if Arteta and the pay as you play Diaby are also available there is a certain logic to that.

We may need a new top notch Keeper, maybe Cech, but Wenger has made it clear that Ospina has replaced Chezzer as the new No.1 , and if he buzzes off, Martinez will move up to be the No.2.

The midfield is already swamped with an over-supply of assorted players, and with Welbeck, Sanchez, Podolski, Sanogo and Giroud it would appear we are swamped with Forwards too.

However, this theory could be pooh, if Sanogo, Podolski, Walcott, Rosicky, Flamini, Diaby and even Cazorla all up sticks and depart for pastures new.

Which way do you lean? 🙂

Written by RA

63 Responses to Theo or Yarmo ….. Arsenal need width

  1. RC78 says:

    I would keep Theo and get another winger as well…

    Theo should only leave if he insits on playing CF and if an offer in excess of 35 Mln EUR comes for him…ideally abroad…

    We need more width but also more abilities to go passed opponents on one-on-one, cross and score from outside the box so Yarmo could be an option along others…

  2. RC78 says:

    In an ideal world – some useless and sub-par utility players will leave this summer and be replaced by quality players…

    Theo can be very effective so I would keep him but there are others I would get rid of without a doubt…and I would also try to make some cash to invest in to players…

    ST: Giroud, Wellbeck
    FW: Sanchez, Theo, Gnabry, Akpom + 1 Recruit
    AM: Ozil, Cazorla
    CM: Ramsey,Wilshere, Ox + 1 Recruit
    DM: Coq, + 1 recruit
    RB: Debs, Bellerin
    CB: Kos, Gabriel, Chambers + 1 Recruit
    LB; Gibbs, Monreal
    GK; Ospina, Viviano + 1 Recruit

    5 recruits ideally…but would be happy with 1 CB, 1 DM, 1 FW + 1 free experienced player (Milner?)

    Garay, Bender, Depay

    Osp – Debs, GARAY, Kos, Gibbs – Ox, BENDER, Ramsey – Ozil – Giroud, Sanchez

    ? – Bellerin, Chambers, Gabriel, Monreal – Wilshere, Coq, Cazorla – Theo, Wellbeck, DEPAY

    + Viviano, Zelalem, Hayden, Milner, Akpom, Gnabry…

    This would do the job, no?

  3. RA says:

    I like your thinking, RC, and that would certainly improve the squad.

    However, I saw Arsene saying that he did not want any of the current squad to leave, which not only is a statement of intent regarding possible transfer activity or lack of it, but would put a lot of pressure on the squad places if he found a ‘top, top player at a price he could not refuse’ however unlikely that would be. 🙂

  4. RA says:

    I should add as a rider that I do not believe that Wenger will keep everyone, altho he can be very French and obstinate when he wants to be. 🙂

    He must surely realise that Sanogo is just not top quality and has shown at Palace that his injuries continue to plague him. X
    Podolski went on loan because he could not get game time with us, and I cannot see that changing, and he has not been a success in Italy either. X
    Rosicky hardly gets any game time and wants to leave – allegedly – and again I just cannot see how his lack of playing time is going to change next season. X
    Flamini has done well for us, but Le Coq has usurped him. X
    Diaby has effectively been shown the door, and the pay for play is just to cushion the blow of his departure. X

    Whatever my personal views might be concerning Theo, there has to be some doubt there, and the rumours of Cazorla feeling the pull of Spain are not going away.

    Admittedly Arsene is not going to decimate the team structure, but those above make with an ‘X’ are already on the fringes of the squad, and would not cause too many ripples if they depart.

    The cases of Theo and Cazorla are unlikely to end with them leaving just yet, but with the two groups I have mentioned that might be 7 players who could go.

    Who knows? 🙂

  5. Rasp says:

    Excellent post Redders, thank you. Here is a YouTube of Yarmo for those not acquainted with his play ….

  6. henrychan says:

    If Walcott don’t have time to play.. why should we look for another Winger..?? Even Ramsey is a winger nowaday.. hahahaha..
    As long as Wenger prefer to play 4-1-4-1 formula.. We will not see any new Winger come to Emirates.. And remember we still have Campbell.. Gnabry.. Akpom.. even Welbeck must bench a lot.. hahahaha..

    With all our main players now.. Just give me Hakan Calhanoglu and Kondogbia.. and another GK.. then we will be invicible again..

  7. Rasp says:

    …. he’s got quick feet!

  8. RC78 says:

    I think in a 4-1-4-1, we do need more wingers/FW bc the system requires width

  9. chas says:

    Cheers, RA.

    Out of all those you mention, Santi is about the only one I definitely don’t want to leave.
    Transfer Market says his contract goes up to Jun 2018, so maybe the summer of 2017 is likeliest for his return to Covadonga.

    The rest can go tomorrow, they’re shite. 🙂

  10. chas says:

    Yarmolenko looks good.
    Easy to play against, though, just stop him cutting in on his left foot. Force him down the line. His swinger looks dodgy.

    This scouting report brought to you by © Monkey’sUncle.

  11. Rasp says:

    Morning NG, I have taken the liberty of removing your comment because I think it would be an excellent topic for a ‘Friday Rant’ tomorrow – with a poll to judge opinion.

    Please don’t discuss this any further or we’ll have nothing to talk about tomorrow 🙂

  12. OK, Rasp no problem.

  13. RC78 says:

    One of the question that AW will have is concerning our Ox….

    Should he permanently convert Ox into a box-to-box or shall he keep him as a winger? I am all for having him start as a box-to-box…

    If AW decides to permanently have him as a B2B mid, it will have an impact on Theo for sure and recruitment…Indeed, it would mean that our squad needs back up at FW/Wingers position for sure…esp. if Theo is allowed to leave

  14. RA says:


    You mean that you and Chas have got together on a Post calling NG a monkey’s uncle? Dastardly! 🙂

  15. RA says:


    You always give me a chuckle – and also if you say [x + x + x etc] are sh*te then, as the go to guy, for go to games, – who can argue with you? 😀

  16. RA says:

    Thanx for the vid on Yarmolenko, Rasp. 🙂

    When I first saw him, two or three years ago, I was struck by the similarity to Theo – 6′ 2″, left footed. pacey, can dribble like a dream, attacks down the wing, no cutting back and letting someone else do the biz — mirror image!! 🙂

    He will probably go to the Spuds or Manure – but we will still have Theo, when he is not injured.

  17. GunnerN5 says:

    I woke up to two surprises this morning – 1) 3″ of fresh snow accompanied by a temperature of 1c – and 2) another post from RA.

    Well RA I’m not one for speculating of the comings and goings of players but I will say that i most certainly do not want to see Santi leave and I’m leaning towards keeping Theo but Sanogo, Podolski, Rosicky, Flamini, Diaby and even PIG could all leave as far as I’m concerned.

    I had cataract surgery yesterday so my blogging time is a bit restricted.

  18. GN5, I hope your eye surgery went well, now you will be able to look back on the history of Arsenal with even greater clarity. 😀

  19. RA says:

    Hi GN5, 🙂

    Sorry to hear about the cataract problem – hope you get over the soreness quickly.

    My Post was another one I wrote on the fly for Rasper – so no great thought involved. Just twiddle my fingers and type something. 😀

  20. RA, you’ve hit the nail on the head.

    Arsenal do need width, the width they (we) need cannot be provided by putting Ramsey there to do a job. It needs a proper winger and we have one in Walcott.

    Why even consider buying a like for like replacement? It’s a no-brainer, innit? 😀

  21. stevepalmer1 says:

    Afternoon all, nice one RA,
    We need to get rid of a few that is quite obvious, Diaby has been out all season and most of the last one as well. Theo has had a season out and it has to be said we have no place for him. Theo is not a winger and has never been a winger, he does no work in midfield so not a midfielder so he has to be classed as a striker, but in all honesty he is more of a goal hanger or poacher to be more correct, He is a passenger who needs to get off the bus.

    Gnabry has been out a season, unless i have missed a game i haven’t seen him at all so he must have a terrible injury so we wont miss him. Arteta will no doubt get another season the same with Rosiski, Flamoni will almost certainly finish this season, Merts will probably get another season although he should be sold and a younger faster more agile CD brought in.

    Last game we played there was no one on the right wing Ramsey should have been working down the flank but his lack of pace was quite evident. Belerin probably would have been the better bet but the worrying thing is that if Belerin is injured we have no cover.

    Many of our loan players will probably not come back so replacements must be made. Our No 1 keeper Ospina has done quite well against lesser sides but he has handling problems that he’s had since he came and no doubt until he goes, T,PIG is not up to the task as No 2 let alone No1 so he should also makeway.

    It has to be said that The Ox has been a big disappointment this season, his injury woes seem to be reminiscent of many other injured players, but should he gain form and stay fit maybe he could fit in if Santi has found employment elsewhere. Giroud is not what i consider a top CF but he gets by Danny Welbeck has not lit many fires he works hard but you have to realise he will never be top quality you either have it or you don’t and i am afraid Danny hasn’t done himself much good coming to us.

    Of course we have Wilshere another who see’s a lot of the sick bay, Jack will stay unless Wenger has waited enough but my guess is Jack will stay and have his 3 or 4 months next season.

    Debuchey has also been injured for a while and when you get older it seems to take some time to get yourself back to where you were. Gibbs also is hit and miss he also seems a walking wounded type of player planning a season ahead who would put faith in him to last more than a couple of months.

    Sanchez has worked his socks off this season, but i now notice that he lacks the faith in players around him so now holds the ball too long. Ozil is a strange one to talk about will he or wont he play that seems to be the question, when he does he is electric but when he doesn’t he is murder.

    It has to be said that Kos Monreal and the Coq have been outstanding and covering those will take a magician. Yes we need player’s quality players i felt at one stage that we were perhaps a couple of top quality players short but i now see that many more are needed, clear out the deadwood and bring in top tallent, maybe a couple at best for this window and perhaps youngsters we naturally haven’t heard of to blend in as time goes past.

    Yes a lot of work for Wenger and the club, but thats why they earn the big bucks. Just another end of season teaser who goes and who comes.

  22. GunnerN5 says:

    Thank you both.

    My surgery went extremely well, after the surgery my eye was very sore and felt like it was full of grit – but you are not allowed to touch your eye other than to use the prescribed drops. This morning it felt perfectly fine and for the first time in 24 months I have clear vision. The process was amazing 30 minutes from start to finish with the surgery taking only 6/7 minutes.

  23. stevepalmer1 says:

    Glad to hear your seeing clearer GN5 you should have a clear view this weekend.

  24. RA says:


    I was being ironic when I compared Yarm with Theo and pretended they’re similar. They are different in every aspect, but I am not surprised that a Norfolk incomer cannot tell the difference between a man of 5’8″ and another of 6′ 2″, or that a right hander is the polar opposite to a left-hander.

    You did put your pants on with the fly in the front I hope? What? Your wearing a kilt? OMG.

    That said, if you are happy – then who am I to take issue? Innit? 🙂

  25. GunnerN5 says:

    RA – In the video that Rasp posted Yarmolenko looked like the type of player that Arsene would be likely to sign – he displayed some incredible trickery. The big question would be – would he be capable of handling the current bully boy climate of the Premier League?

  26. RC78 says:

    I would rather Wenger invest in Fekir, Depay, Bakkali, Pedro, Reuss or Lacazette than in Yarmolenko…

  27. RA says:

    Yarm is big enough, GN5, but of course with all these players there is a question mark as to wether they can cope mentally, or not, with the quick physical game in England – as you say.

    One of the best players we have, and someone able to resist the more robust Prem players, is also probably the smallest, altho well muscled, and that is Sanchez, of course.

  28. RA says:

    Fair enough, RC, and you would keep????

    According to your earlier comments you also want to keep Theo.

    So we would have, Welbeck, Sanchez, Theo and one of the players you mention all fighting for a maximum of two positions.

    What then of Ox, Rambo, Le Coq, Arteta, Cazzor, Rosicky, Özil?

    That is 11 players fighting for 5 positions. Something has to give – so who goes from those named?

  29. RA,

    Pants? kilt? Blast boy, just what dew yew think us’n wear in Norfolk?

  30. GunnerN5 says:

    It’s very tricky trying to figure out the best combinations of the skills and talents that we currently have at Arsenal let alone adding more players to the squad. However we have one saving grace – it’s AW’s job and not ours as we can only be sure to make the right decisions – after the fact.

  31. RA says:

    Probably plastic see thru’s NG — we know what goes on in that there part of the country! 🙂

  32. RA says:


    You are correct 20/20 hindsight is a wonderful thing — and then the real cockroaches get busy telling whoever will listen that he has bought the wrong guy – for too much money — and he is too old.

    AW doesn’t give a stuff – he has heard it all before, and more power to his elbow — mind you, if he doesn’t sell Theo and buy Yarmolenko, I will be having a word with him. 😀

  33. Big Raddy says:

    RA. This is not easy.

    Yarmo may well be the dog’s swingers but I can’t see us buying a winger. If we do it is likely to be the German fellow AW tried to buy last season – Draxler.

    As to the chaps who may leave. ….. they would be mad to leave a club who pay well, look after their players and is on the up, however AW will surely cull the midfield

  34. RA says:

    I hear what you say, Raddy, and you may well be right.

    I rang Wenger and said ‘look come clean, tell me what you are up to………or else’

    Needless to say that was in my dreams, and in my dreams he said to me, ‘Je ne vous dirai rien, toi idiot’.

    Bit harsh! 🙂

  35. chas mobile says:

    Yarmolenko on ITV4 now.

  36. GoonerB says:

    Thanks RA, great post. In fact I had a similar (ish) post in mind but you have beaten me to the punch. Not in a literal sense you understand, as I am not in the habit of taking on any of our 6’8″, 18 stone, reflective sun-glassed up, cigar chomping, armed to the teeth like Rambo, cousins from across the pond 🙂

    My post was going to be titled “Is an inside outey all we now need?”

    To explain I was looking at the squad and was fairly happy with most positions leading into the summer transfer market. A while back I wanted another pacier CD to play with Kos. We have Gabriel now and I would like to see if he could form a partnership with Kos with Per and Chambers as 3rd / 4th choices.

    I also felt the need for a holding DM but the emergence of Le Coq has got me hoping we don’t replace him as 1st choice. As you say the young Bielik could be back up, to a degree, and we have Arteta but possibly more importantly should Chambers be played more in this role in Le Coq’s absence?

    I wanted a slight upgrade on Ollie but still feel we can move forwards with him as 1st choice (with Welbeck and young Akpom getting some playing time there) providing the players behind him are right. If they aren’t Ollies weaknesses get exposed by the best teams IMO.

    That then brings me to the crux of your post RA because in essence we are discussing one of the positions behind Ollie, but notably here the attacking right. The one thing I feel we are missing here is an inside outey, i.e a left footer who can play the attacking right role.

    We have a top inside outey on the left in Sanchez and I have often wondered why AW didn’t try AOC and / or Walcott more as right footers from the left. I have also wondered whether Podolski could have flourished more if tried from the right rather than the left, but that may be pushing it.

    We really don’t have a top experienced option of an attacking left footer playing from the right (we have young Jon Torral as a left footer who may develop into the role in the next 2-3 seasons but not yet), and to me the best teams recently tend to have that inside outey set up with their attacking wide players. Is it the one area, or option, we are currently lacking in?

    So for me I say we keep Theo and go for your chap as well RA (who you obviously have some ownership rights on). I think there may be a couple of departures and we will not end up overloaded by keeping Theo and bringing him in.

  37. Gööner In Exile says:

    Nice one RA firstly there needs to be a few ground rules with the squad players. We have a squad now which is hard to get into the first team, we have finances to hold on to who we want and replace whoever leaves.

    So first rule:

    If anyone holds the club to ransom for
    1) first team football
    2) playing in a preferred position
    3) money
    4) any other inkling that their agent is touting them around
    they are sold…..but only to clubs we choose.

    I can’t be doing with players who are not committed to the team, and I can’t be doing with players who would rather walk in to another team than work to get in to ours.

    Good players who have belief in their own ability do not worry about lack of game time. Good players who want to be at the club act like Gibbs and Rambo and Ox quietly bide their time when they haven’t got the shirt and aim to show they deserve a first team shirt when the opportunity comes (almost like Santi had to earlier on in the season).

    As for players coming in, well if we have space we should sign, but in reality I think last seasons business was good, Welly, Chambers, Gabriel, Ospina and of course Alexis have improved the squad. We must remember we have youngsters like Akpom, Gnabry to blood, we also have the likes of Joel Campbell to come back, and now Wellington Silva. So we probably need to make some room.

    I assume Flamini and Diaby will be released which will vacate two berths in the squad, let’s assume also that Pod goes and as much as I hate to say it TR7 has probably got to move on. That makes room for some youngsters, and with the age of the current first team we do need to change the make up of our squad to have young players learning from the likes of Santi, Alexis and Ozil.

  38. chas says:

  39. chas says:

    One for Arnie. 🙂

  40. Big Raddy says:

    Morning All,

    Quiet this morning. Are you recovering from a post- St.Georges night beer-fest?

  41. chas says:

    These watches look nice………….

  42. chas says:

    Maybe Micky bust a wheel bearing on his surfing jaunt.

  43. chas says:

    I’ve no idea what NG’s rant is about for today.

    It seems that Arsenal twitter is only talking about Cesc.
    Maybe Chary could write a Cescy post for Saturday, though I realise it’s not his specialist area of detestation. 🙂

  44. chas says:

    Wear yellow for Wembley…….

  45. Big Raddy says:

    Mmmm. She wore, she wore

    I don’t understand how fans can abuse Cesc. He has been slapped in the face twice – firstly when he got sacked by his hometown club and then when his second home club didn’t want him.

  46. Big Raddy says:

    7.29 I spent a week camping by the beach in Rainbow Bay ,Queensland. Never saw that lady.

  47. Big Raddy says:

    Bugger. have taken the theme of my pre-match

  48. chas says:

    I still think it’s supposition what happened with Fabregas to the chavs.
    Some think they know the whole story, though.

  49. chas says:

    Just delete the comment. No-one will ever know as it’s only us two here.

  50. chas says:

    What decade was that? 🙂

  51. chas says:

    Right, off for a swim.
    Last sunny morning this week. Cloudy by the afternoon. 😦

  52. RA says:

    Good Morning, Guys, 🙂

  53. RA says:

    Can’t say that I give much thought to poor old multi-millionaire Cesc.

    Arsene said recently that Cesc should be treated with respect by the Arsenal fans for what he did when with us.

    He went on that he had no problem with Cesc, but he regretted that in his last year with Arsenal he made it so clear he wanted to leave.

    That regret did not extend to ‘snubbing’ Cesc when he expected Arsenal to take their option to buy him back.

    On the other hand, Cesc made a big deal recently over how happy he was at Chelsea, and especially with Maureen for wanting him.
    For that read ‘my girlfriend (Arsenal) did not want me – and I don’t care). 🙂

    Nope, I still don’t care – it’s history and life goes on, whatever the truth of it was.

  54. RA says:

    Exile @ 6:05,

    I could not agree more. We should ask Wenger to stick that up in the dressing room! 🙂

  55. RA says:


    Your ‘inside- outey’ comment last night was absolutely spot on too, and I wish I could have been around to discuss it further with you!

    Honestly – anyone would think you had to work hard during the day, when I am being a mouthy gadfly, in order to feed your lovely family! 🙂

  56. Big Raddy says:

    Good Morning RA,

    Re Cesc: Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.

  57. Rasp says:

    Guys, change the topic or there will be no point in today’s post 😦

  58. Rasp says:

    ….. New post ……..

  59. RA says:


    We all have different personalities I guess, but I am fairly binary in my make-up, that is to say, I think that if, for example, a romance goes wrong, don’t sit and mope, or try to stay ‘friends’ – if it is over – it is over – goodbye.

    If players want to go — there’s the door – close it quietly on the way out.

    It is also difficult for a manager – he will have invested a lot of time and effort in developing a player, and if the player then wants to leave at the height of his career, that could feel like a betrayal.

    Losing a top player would badly weaken the team, and ultimately have an affect on the manager’s career as well.

    Good riddance on such players.

  60. theo might be going to liverpool

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