New season, same old frailties?

Brentford 2 Arsenal 0 - News - Official website of Brentford Football Club

And our season starts with a disappointing, but not all that surprising, defeat at Brentford. Our defense unit was tested early on and irremediably, we conceded a goal in the first 25 minutes of the game – courtesy of poor decision-making. We then tried to push harder and create chances especially through Tierney, Pepe, ESR and even Xhaka but to no avail. In the second half, the team continued to struggle with Brentford’s long balls and hussle and finally conceded a second goal – some say that Leno should have been awarded a free-kick and others say that top GKs would not even have been in that situation, it is hard to tell. In any case, with 15 minutes to play, we were 2-0 down and were not really causing Brentford any real trouble…

So we were indeed missing Saka, Auba and Laca at the start so that could explain a bit of our lack of offensive threat but what about our defense? It was bullied from minute one and Ben White was struggling the whole game while Mari was not really better…Ben White did well in a back 3 set-up with 2 big players next to him – yesterday, it seems that he was looking like a lost boy. Leno continues to be his usual self – a decent GK, nothing more. Lockonga looked promising for his first game but he still has a lot to learn and improve on. AS for Xhaka, our captain for the night, he tried as always.

So all and all, we can’t say that the team is looking more drilled or confident or improved as the same defensive frailties could be seen and the same lack of cutting edge in front of goal was also visible but for the latter, I am ready to give some leniency since we were missing 3 key players. For the defensive side, I am a lot more critical.

How shall we sort our defensive weaknesses?

  • Finally get a better GK?
  • Revert to a back 3 with Holding, White, Gabriel and set up in a 343 or 352?
  • Splurdge on a real midfield enforcer?
  • Get a new coach?

Anyways – a familiar outing and outcome yesterday against a physical team that had a simple game plan: long balls, go for the second balls and press the central defenders…

There is a bit of time to sort the team out still and apparently, the club is now open to sell Aubameyang to raise cash. Let us see…

39 Responses to New season, same old frailties?

  1. Christopher Loum says:

    Arteta can’t handle pressure and can’t go from behind to win the game, the same game plan of last season. He is good but not for Arsenal

  2. RC78 says:

    I think we are all supporting Arteta and Arsenal but also agree that if by December, we are not in the Top 6 and are out of Cups, we would need to part ways with both Edu and Arteta….They say they work as a team so they would have to leave as a team.

    I would say then we should appoint Luis Campos as Sporting Director and then discuss with him (i) how we should play, (ii) how the team should be moulded (who needs to leave and who needs to stay) and (iii) who we should appoint as our coach. I would say give the power to the Sporting Director and make him/her the leading figure of our project and hire a Coach who focuses on making the team tick on the field. I would not mind Jorge Jesus for example as a coach – we do need some holy magic to make our team great again 😛

    Anyways – I am fully behind Arteta and Edu but patience has a limit and for me, it is December.

  3. Gilly says:

    I think Arteta must leave immediately now. There is no difference between our style of play now and last season. He has no tactical knowledge, can’t inspire players. Can anyone mention one game, since Arteta came, that he won by his tactical maneuver. He doesn’t inspire confidence. .

  4. VP says:

    RC, I am confused, you already have Arsenal finishing outside the top 10 at season end so why would they be top 6 come december?

    I for one think 22nd Oct should be the day of reckoning. If we are not playing well and Artie has lost the dressing room (lol) then call up Arsene, wish him a Happy 72nd Birthday and ask for him to take charge at home against Aston Villa on the 23rd Oct until season end.

    Appoint Erik ten Hag for 22/23.

    Only 1 game down, lets not doom and gloom this, COYG!

  5. RC78 says:

    Hi VP – I have them 10th if there is no team and managerial improvement…I still fully support the AFC and Arteta

  6. allezkev says:

    “It is hard to tell” really?

    What’s hard to tell about a player standing in front of and grabbing Leno, it’s a foul.

  7. Mduduzi says:

    With Arteta coaching our team I don’t see us getting anywhere tactical ,technical we clueless, we can’t defend and we can’t attack, sorry guys he must go

  8. fred1266 says:

    Is arteta the problem or the philosophy of how arsenal want to play and we don’t have the players to do it

    Cause emery went threw similar ent

  9. RA says:

    Hi Guys/Gals,

    GoonerB Good, and Allez Kev —
    — I was amused first by your irritation [GB} with the tendency of some bloggers to let their ‘confirmation bias’ loose – and thought to myself that no one would ever be able to ‘police’ you out of expressing your own independent views, altho there did not seem to be any malice aforethought intended by anyone —

    — and then [Kev] pointed out that the 2nd goal should never have been allowed because it was a clear and obvious foul, and also because the Bees player was clamped so tightly to Leno that it looked like a public offence was being committed.

    We lost because the Bees were more committed than us and their tactics were spot on.

    The game and the result did not auger well for the early weeks of the season – but it’s too early to guess how things will turn out.

  10. GoonerB says:

    Thanks RC, and hello RA 😁

    Don’t worry RA, I’m not being policed out of commenting or my opinions. I was mainly saying that we can all have differing views or similar views and still debate them politely.

    Whether a bloggers viewpoint is classed as an opinion, a bias, a confirmation bias is all a moot point to me. The simple argument is that said blogger should be able to express that opinion regardless, and further they should have the right to repeatedly express that opinion as they see fit if nothing has altered their stance on it, or change their mind if they so want.

    Any blogger can choose to not answer another bloggers comment or choose to engage in debate either in agreement with that opinion or in contrast and to express their alternate view, perhaps with the aim that they might sway said blogger to a different view with a strong argument. I have been swayed a few times by alternate arguments even though I can often be steadfast in my opinions.

    What shouldn’t happen is for a subject to be raised by someone and for that person to receive comments along the lines of can you shut up ffs on that subject, I’m sick of it, your talking nonsense and that viewpoint is a f—ing joke.

    I’m not calling out any individual here and keeping this generalistic but the main point being that anyone taking this line of approach will have themselves had steadfast opinions on another aspect of the running of the club or on a player that they will have repeated often.

    Engage to agree or disagree but do it in a decent way and not in a way that is belittling to that other persons opinion and in an attempt to aggressively shut down their opinion and that subject.

    You and I have often agreed on many things RA but have sometimes disagreed and put across different views sometimes with a bit if banter or jest. I wouldn’t want to be seen to belittle your view, but that is mainly because you are double my size, wear a Stetson, and carry a colt 45 under your poncho….so mainly it’s about life preservation.

    Anyway, said my peace on it, let bygones be bygones. Press the reset button and move on. We have important matters to discuss pertaining to the rescuing of our club from potential mid table obscurity.

  11. Aaron says:

    That performance was a load of rubbish….

    Everyone in the AFC organization knew who we were playing in the 1st game, yet the opponents showed up as a cohesive team, with a plan and aggression, similar to Leeds.

    AFC looked like they were playing a friendly, oh wait they thought this team was a friendly.

    The entire EPL knows AFC are going to be vulnerable to crosses, corners and direct free kicks. Leno does not command the box, and our best header Luiz is gone.

    Most AFC fans hold their breath when a long throw or corner comes in as it is going to create chaos, maybe not directly, but a few ping pongs later it will.

    Mad Jens never would have let that player do that, the EPL is a physical league, most of the time, this is not rocket science. So, you better have a strong CB, VVD or Kompany type to deal with this physicality and to direct the defense. Who do we have?

    ESR looked good, but who was he playing with up top and side by side with him, not many guys other than Saka, in the last year, because Arteta never plays anyone else other than Laca, Auba, or for heavens sake Willian, regardless of their respective poor performances. Need another guy next to Partey and it aint’ Xhaka.

    Our defenders take three touches to move the ball forward, we are ponderous of foot at rb and in the midfield, and their is no cohesion up top.

    We all see the patters, AFC creep the ball forward, allow the defense to get set, and miraculously the opponents are on the counter.

    F me, it is the same old same old situation every year, wait till the end of the transfer window, panic sell, or not sell, ever, and get a player on loan who might be good, average or never play due to injury. How is a coach supposed to integrate these players into a cohesive team? One can’t because your are 5+ games into the season and you are already chasing wins.

    Expect more of the same and I really foresee two more losses out of 5 and mid table for AFC heading into October. Might be worse…

    Unless, AFC purchase a keeper to challenge Leno, Sanchez, Onana or anyone, a rb, a CAM and another scorer, they are toast.
    There are some options, plenty of keepers in the under $20 mill range all day long, tell AMN play rb or pack your suitcase tonight, a CAM not named Maddi for under $60 mil, and maybe Abraham on loan.

    But if Artedu and Josh sit on their hands this season, this season will become a nightmare, and that amaZon production will make our club look like the three stooges.

  12. RA says:

    GB,

    I agree with you. 😜 👍

    You have it right when you say fans can express an opinion, should they want, (within the boundaries mentioned at the top of the blog) and repeat it as often as they want, even if they bore the asses off everyone else — (I often do 😳)

    My concern – carried on from last year – is that we have players in our squad who would never grace the squads of the current top teams, and that makes progress for our team very difficult in the new season.

    I could give the names of those squad players I think should be moved on, but what is the point? It’s not a secret, and I have mentioned the names too often last year, and I am sure everyone is bored stiff with the repetition — and they are mostly still here.

    I think LBG might well agree with me on this, and that the proof of the matter is borne out because we cannot sell many of the current deadwood (there are some exceptions like Willock), unless we give them away free, and that can take the whole transfer window every summer.

  13. GoonerB says:

    Thanks again for the post RC. A lot of what you say Aaron is true. I would though look at the different factors a bit more.

    Firstly the opponents. I spoke with a QPR fan earlier and he said he always thought that Brentford would surprise a few teams this year. They are a well organised team with power, pa and goals in them.

    Added to that they have mostly kept last years team intact so have an understanding of each other and come off the back of a season where they were a dominant team so full of confidence.

    They played a team that had a season that challenged their inherent confidence and had struggled. The fact that one was operating in a division above was probably overcome by the team below having a stellar season and having a team that was more settled and embedded.

    We are still a somewhat disjointed team, not knowing our best team and with lots of ins and outs and changes.

    The big lesson for me yesterday was that you need quality experience in the team. You need players who know how to get a game over the line. We had far too many precocious youngsters with too little quality experience yesterday and were ripe for the taking by that Brentford team.

    We all want our youngsters to do well but suddenly thinking that Martinelli and Balogun can just replace Aubamayeng and Lacazette is probably wishful thinking. I have been guilty of those thoughts at times but does yesterday show that these players still have another couple of seasons as understudies before they can permanently replace older proven players?

    This brings me on to our current transfer window. I am happy with the 3 so far but they don’t come with that experience both within them individually and / or in the EPL to be deciding factors in our season.

    I wonder if our transfer priorities are wrong? Are we chasing the wrong players and too many pipe dreams? Ideally we need some experienced players in our attack that can offer a greater goal threat, and preferably ones that require no adaptation period with the club and the EPL.

    Also it would be prudent to try and find these players that can make an immediate difference who are really invested in playing for the club.

    Players like Locatelli and Martinez sound lovely but we would probably not be their first choice so even if we got them we are likely getting players who see us as a temporary stepping stone.

    A player like Aouer may want to be here bit will he immediately convert his stats from the French league to the EPL or will it take him one and a half seasons to adapt and produce.

    To name 3 players that would tick the boxes of being EPL ready, offer us more goal threat and game winning ability, and want to play for us I could say Ramsey, Zaha and Abraham. All look attainable to me and would have likely made a big difference in yesterdays line up.

    We could have done a player plus cash deal with Palace with Zaha for Nketieh and maybe loaned Nelson to boot to play the attacking left side role there. A good loan spell could have benefitted both parties and we get a quality attacking player with experience.

    Abraham sounds like he wanta to come and even though not the finished article is still further on in his development than both Martinelli and Balogun. Ramsey I would have thought would love to come and finish his career with us and would likely compromise significantly on wages to be back with us.

    The EPL is everything to us this year with no Europe. This is the year we need to reestablish our position higher up the table. Every game is precious even the first one. We cant just think, oh well it’s only the first game, plenty left.

    How many banana skin slips up can we afford this year? Maybe 2 but quite possibly only one, so we have used up our spare life on the very first game. We probably needed 4 points minimum from those first 3 games so now we need a win and a draw from Chelsea and City.

  14. GoonerB says:

    Sorry so many phone typos. The worst one being that Brentford had pace not pa, although maybe they had both 😎

    Go on RA, be repetitive and give us your list. I’m all ears and actually genuinely can’t remember all the ones you want to flush down the lav.

  15. Aaron says:

    GoonerB,

    Here are three that are EPL tested, AMN, we have seen what he can do, or bring up some youngster from the championship, Buendia, could have had him, but did not want to spend, Sanchez in goal, proven and cheap, and Abraham who has goals in him. Those three would have cost less than $50 mil, and we just sold Willock for goodness sakes for $25 mil. Do not tell me AFC can’t cough up $25 mill for 3 players. Part of being a GM in US sports is identifying who you need to be competitive, superstars, plus experienced players who know how to play for cheap, that would be free agency or loans, AFC can’t seem to do both at the same time.

    We are a joke from the top on down, Josh is as blind as he is stupid.

    Will watch from afar this year, yet knowing we are going to go on a run after x-mas, top 3 in the league to get us to 10th by the end of the year because we cratered before Dec…

    We shall see.

  16. VP says:

    Great Comment GB – The big lesson for me yesterday was that you need quality experience in the team. You need players who know how to get a game over the line.

    The same should be said for the coach. Unfortunately he s gaining that experience with us so that he can become a better coach for someone else.
    A case in point is Benitez at Everton. A goal down at half time, 3:1 victors at Full-time. Quality experience turned the game in the 2nd half.

    However that said, you could argue against this with the Emery example… I think Arteta is doing much better than Emery.

    I will wait for Dec per RC however the next 3 games are not looking good for us and will pile the pressure on. Maybe this is a good thing as it will show us if the AFC has it right or has been left behind again for another season.

    COYG!

  17. Aaron says:

    VP,

    Per Exporatory Data, “Under Arteta, when trailing any game by exactly 1 goal at halftime, #Arsenal have a record of 0-9-3 (W-L-D). Arsenal also average a FT Goal Difference of -1.16 and 2 Total Shots on Target in these games.”

    So, after yesterday loss, how was that improvement?

    That is not how I feel, how I see it, just the cold grey hard facts brought to light.

  18. Arsenal really need a change this season… If we are to win any trophy

  19. VP says:

    Aaron, I’m a firm believer in lies lies and statistics.
    As for EDA that you mention, I think you underestimate the difference between Correlation and Causation. There are no cold facts or grey facts here. Variables are too numerous for a simple cause and effect outcome.
    I won’t go into the improvements, I think Rocky has explained it very well in many of his posts and comments in regards to the turn-around (improved results) since Christmas.
    However we are into a new season and I am forever optimistic that we will finish top 5. It might not happen but it might.
    COYG!

  20. RA says:

    Umm, I can just imagine that every red blooded Arsenal fan, male and female (is there a causal link there?) watch an Arsenal game avidly, and when an event occurs that apparently leads to giving away a goal (or scoring one) they immediately leap into a mass discussion as to whether there was a cause and effect involved and then inevitably dispute whether, or not, one variable caused another variable to change, or not.

    Hopefully, they will finally agree whether, or not, there was a a causal relationship involved, as it is a given that they will all understand that correlation is not the same as causation – because they will comprehend that occasionally two things can share a relationship without one event causing the other.

    Yes siree, Bob, that’s what we all go to games for – isn’t it?

    Fortunately, we have Aaron and VP to sort it out for us. 😜

  21. GoonerB says:

    RA, I’m not quite sure I get the concept. Maybe if I try and understand it in a more basic caveman type of way…….

    So my girlfriends best friend is very similar to her in looks and sense of humour. They both wear the same perfume and even give off the same flirty little signals; at least in my mind they do. I fancy my girlfriend, ergo I quite fancy her best friend as well.

    So that is a correlation but that correlation is not what caused me to get a black eye, bruised gonads, and my Armani suits to be cut to shreds. This seems to have been caused by my suggestion that all 3 of us spend the night together in bed with Barry White providing the mood and 9 1/2 weeks on in the background…..I must have misread the signs.

    Is that what you are talking about RA?

  22. GoonerB says:

    I stick with my assessment from yesterday. There were faults and poor showings across the team but again look at the line up. We had too many youngsters still not fully developed all in the same team and a combination of players that have featured little together on a regular basis.

    White and Lokonga have just arrived and are still getting to know their teammates. Martinelli is not that experienced player yet in a tough game, even if he becomes a great player in the future. Also he hardly featured last year and for his assessment read ditto for Balogun. All too young, too new to the club and too unfamiliar with each other.

    Contrast to Brentford who come off the back of a dominant season, will have had a far more settled pre season and seem to have a game style that will be problematic to many top teams even though they are newly promoted.

    Also if you track back their team to the last few games of last season it is very consistent in its line up plus or minus a couple of changes here and there, so it is a team that has a full understanding if each other so created a fluidity in how they want to play.

    It shouldn’t be so surprising. What concerns me is this “illness” that our 2 most experienced forwards seem to have despite the fact they were both fine 4 days earlier. It could be genuine but sounds like the sort of thing used when a player is on the cusp of leaving.

    The 3 signings look like good ones but maybe not the key ones as of yet. This means we have started the season lacking what we need in a season where only EPL results really matter.

    I still cant help but feel the players we are chasing to enhance our attacking threat aren’t that realistic and we have therefore stalled in our transfer dealings.

    At the same time I think there were some very good and pragmatic signings we could have made maybe 2 to 3 weeks back that could have settled in and would have strengthened those areas and we have somewhat been barking up the wrong tree for the last few weeks.

  23. RC78 says:

    There is a possibility that our first win (all competitions included) is registered on 11th of September…By then, we may have lost in the EFL Cup and only amassed 0 point in our first three games…If we lost in the EFL Cup and have 0 point by the 11th of September, we would need to win the next 6 EPL games to stand a chance of being in the hunt for a Top 6 finish…

  24. RA says:

    GoonerB,

    I never claimed that I understood what I dun wrote.

    You will need VP for that. 😛

    Your further musings based on your comment yesterday are good.

    Perhaps you can have a word with RC — he might have flipped. 😜

    I am now a PSG supporter!!! 👍

  25. VP says:

    Well I thought I was taking the piss but RA and GB have put me to shame. I had a great laugh, thanks.

    Talking about taking the piss, new rumour is that a double swoop of Conte and Martinez are going to replace a sacked Arteta.

    Other rumours having PEA and Laca heading to Barca.

    It looks like its going to be a very strange season…

  26. Pete the Thirst says:

    A very messy performance on Friday night. Brentford went full on Wimbledon and we fell for it.

    The team looked completely disorganised.

    ESR & Tierney tried. A number of others just went through the motions.

    Xhaka was out the door a few weeks ago…now he’s captain…

    Leno was very poor. Can you imagine Lahmann letting a player hold his arms without getting a black eye?

  27. GoonerB says:

    Pete, for me Xhaka is a strange one. I must admit that I have altered my opinion on him a few times now.

    Where I am with him is that I think he is a decent player with some skills but doesn’t possess the pace and ball carrying / driving ability more needed in the EPL so will always look not quite right here but could thrive in a different league.

    He also struggles to receive the ball under pressure or under the press which is a feature of the EPL, again further weakening his input in this league.

    This is why we see so many sideways and backwards passing or falling over with minimal contact in the hope of a foul because he has been cornered.

    He can play a lovely pass when he has the time on the ball facing the right way but he has to receive the ball in space for this to happen. He cant create his own space and move away from opposition players.

    Something sots uneasy with me that we seemed to be intent on reinventing our midfield with him on the move only for him to not only stay but to seemingly get a new contract and then gi straight back in the 1st team. Something feels awry, as if we are failing with our key remaining summer targets.

  28. GoonerB says:

    I think one of the problems with our midfield has been with the balance. Generally most top teams need a more positionally disciplined defensive midfielder that screens the back 4.

    Ideally this player should be good at ball recovery and interception, and be able to play a bit and be comfortable receiving the ball under pressure, so that they can effectively be the first link to work the ball out from defence.

    Xhaka, as mentioned falls down in some of these areas. Out of our other so called defensive midfielders I still don’t think we have that player that totally fulfills the role. Maybe Lokonga but he is raw.

    I am not sure that even Partey is this and he looks a bit more box to box and would suit having someone positioned behind him. Many of our defensive midfielders feel like they still need someone else tucked in behind them.

    This is where I wonder if, instead of playing White in a back 3 as some have mentioned we could play him in front of a back 4. That would allow us to play 2 other ball carrying CM’s that can get us on the front foot. Kind of a hybrid number 8/10.

    De Bruyne is this and will receive the ball from deeper positions and take his team forwards but will also operate around the box like a 10. We have our very own ESR who is this type but I would like to see 2 if him operating in front of a nore specific DM. We would gain much more control if the midfield with 2 hybrid 8/10’s.

  29. RA says:

    I am very, very disappointed with Arsenal, and have been for some years.

    Inevitably, I have become resigned to waiting for something, anything, to happen that will put us back on track, but as time goes by the ‘wait’ is becoming longer and longer, and I am becoming more and more disillusioned with the owner, the current manager and the couldn’t care attitude of many of the squad.

    I have always wanted Arteta to succeed in transforming our squad by ‘clearing out the deadwood’ which he said he wanted to do this transfer window, but far from doing so, he has failed to get rid of Bellerin, who is desperate to leave Arsenal, or Xhaka, who the majority of fans wanted to go, but who has just signed an improved 4 year contract, and so this muddle goes on and on.

    Arteta himself seems disillusioned. bewildered and also resigned, like many of us, to think nothing he does seems to work. and he fears the worst.

    This is just a personal interpretation, and many of you will have different opinions, but frankly if I could wave a magic wand, the only way out seems to be is for major and genuine changes to the ownership, (unlikely) a new manager to be appointed (somewhat unfair on Mikel, who is probably not getting the support of the owner) and finally for a much more robust clear out in the next two weeks before the window closes, of those who have continually let us down.

    Sadly, the above is likely to fall into the manky category of wishful thinking.

  30. Sue says:

    And Xhaka has now signed his new deal with an increase!
    I honestly have no idea what the hell is going on at our club. One game in and I feel deflated.. nothing has changed from last season!
    You couldn’t make it up, only happens at AFC

  31. Pete the Thirst says:

    @GB I’ve never been convinced by Xhaka since he was signed by St Arsene a number of years ago. At the time I wondered how a £35 million midfielder struggled to pass the ball accurately. He has been figured out in the Premier League where it is known if he is put under pressure he will make a mistake, sometimes a complete howler.

    Even after a good Euros the only offer was from Roma for £17 million. Half of what he was bought for. We should have snapped their arms off in my opinion.

  32. Pete the Thirst says:

    @RA I feel your pain.

    Some of the transfer dealings of recent seasons have been baffling to say the least. This window hasn’t been much better.

    Arteta should be focusing on the talented youth at his disposal. Instead we kept Xhaka and sold WIllock. Admittedly for a decent price, but we know Xhaka is not going to improve the midfield.

    We paid £50 million for a defender who is good on the ball, but looks a bit weak in the air. We are well stocked with centre backs. He may be an amazing signing, but surely we should have been looking to bring in midfield reinforcements. Creative and ball winners. We got Sambi who is raw, but promising. We still lack the creative replacement for MOd. He may come back, but we can’t be wasting money on another English player that flatters to deceive in Maddison (£70 million – no way).

    We have been pursuing Ramsdale for ludicrous sums of money. In the first instance we need a back up. Why was Ryan not given a contract?

    The French league is on the verge of collapse and the Spanish giants aren’t far behind. Why aren’t we sniffing around them with offers that they literally can’t refuse?

    Remember a few seasons back we got rid of a number of talent scouts? Replaced by agent dealing and a mysterious super computer. I worry that this has left us reliant upon dodgy deals that will not benefit the Club, just the agents, players and the management.

  33. RC78 says:

    We are behind Arteta and AFC but it s purely due to our love for the club…we still sit diillusionned and upset with the club’s form since 2016…

    I am still intrigued by the sales of Martinez, Willock and the departure of Ramsey…

    As rightly mentioned, Ben White may be a good signing but shouldn’t our focus have been on a RB, DM and CM?

    At CB, we had already Holding, Mari and Gabriel and could have used Chambers and Tierney there too so what is the point of splashing 50 Mln on White when we could maybe offer this type of money for Rice or Philips for example?

    What is the point of selling our best scoring midfielder in the last 6 months to Newcastle when we are stuggling to get goals from our own midfielders?

    Why is it so hard to sell Bellerin when he wants out?

    Why is Lacazette not sold or resigned yet?

    Not exactly sure what Edu is doing at the moment and what is the status with Willian?

    One thing is clear though, many teams are now using a back 3 as a set-up and it may be our best option until we sort out our midfield issues:

    Leno – Holding, White, Gabriel – Chambers, AMN, Xhaka, Tierney – ESR – Pepe, Laca (or Auba)

  34. RC78 says:

    There is also Valverde at Real who may be tempted by a move away…Tchouameni is a future crack…

  35. RA says:

    Pete,

    You are spot on, and in particular your comments about the redundancy of the 50 Arsenal scouts was very apt, because that has meant we have no knowledgeable specialist to squirrel around the other leagues in Europe, or South America, to try and tempt clubs like Real Madrid, Barça, Juventus etc who are in financial problems, to sell good players to us at a discount.

    I agree that Maddison at £70m or £80m is right for Arsenal in the current circumstances.

    As for Ben White, it’s early days, but typically Arsenal have bought another CB who is not quite 6 feet tall, and it showed in his heading, or lack of it, against Brentford – maybe he will be better in midfield.

  36. RA says:

    Sorry, Pete, I meant –” I agree that Maddison at £70m or £80m is NOT right for Arsenal in the current circumstances.”

  37. RC78 says:

    New post…a short one with a critical question but mostly just to get a new thread and series of comments

  38. fred1266 says:

    Pete when was the scout made redundant wasn’t it 2020, cause or transfer decision to me seem poor even before the scout were released

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