Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Ding dong Cesc is dead, who should Arsenal buy with £30m instead?

Players of Cesc’s caliber don’t come along very often and when they do, they are expensive. That’s at least part of the reason why the clamor for Arsenal to re-sign Cesc was so loud. But now that Arsenal have ruled out Cesc my hope is that the manager has a different big target in mind. Something in the £30-50m range. Something Suarez-like.

Arsenal have been in need of a player who can both create and shoot since Cesc left. If you haven’t seen my graphs detailing Arsenal’s attacking woes in terms of shooting here they are again:

fuck

Fabregas in his penultimate season (2010 in the chart above) was at his very best in an Arsenal uniform scoring 15, assisting 13, taking 86 shots, and creating 95 shots for others. He also had career highs in dribbles per game (1.9), crosses, and through balls (well, he led the League with 1 accurate per game) that season. It was an amazing year for Cesc and Arsenal, especially considering the fact that Robin van Persie played just 16 games and that meant Arsenal’s only forwards were Bendtner and Arshavin.

Since then Arsenal lost Cesc and Nasri and then van Persie and Arshavin replacing them with Cazorla, Podolski, and Giroud and the results are fairly clear: Arsenal’s attack fell off. Whereas once Arsenal were in the top four in terms of shots per game, the Gunners have slowly slipped to 6th and now this season, 8th.

Arsenal have made up for lack of shots by being efficient offensively and defensively but still managed to score the fewest goals tally for an Arsenal team (68) since 2008 (also 68) and only one other post-Invincibles side scored fewer (63 in 2006). That was during Henry’s last season.

This recent lack of attacking prowess explains last summer’s interest in Luis Suarez, despite my rather public disinterest. Over his career Suarez had been an inefficient player, demanding a large number of shots and much of the ball in order to be productive, but regardless of his inefficiency, Suarez’ teams always were in the top 1 or 2 in shots because he’s such an offensive beast.

In the season before Arsenal tried to sign him, Suarez created 2.71 shots per 90 minutes of play* and took a whopping 5.7 for himself.  That’s 8.41 shots per 90 minutes that he was either taking or making for his team. You can already see what impact he might have had on this Arsenal team.

Suarez was inefficient but it wasn’t because he was taking too many pot shots from distance**. He attempted 3.63 shots per 90 inside the penalty area which was better than Messi in the same year (3.43) and even better than shot king Ronaldo (3.61). He was getting into the right areas, he just wasn’t converting. Until this season.

Suarez was also a wasteful dribbler, winning only 39% compared to Messi’s crazy 63%, but again Suarez was simply off the charts in terms of total number of dribbles attempted and the result was that he was breaking down opposition defenders almost 3 times per 90.

This picture here is of a player who demanded a ton of the ball but was getting in to great areas by getting past his defender and then either creating a shot or taking a shot. And he was doing that a lot.  None of which (aside from chance creation) Cesc was ever very good doing.

With Cesc’s pricetag at £30m and with Arsene “juggling budgets”*** you can see why Wenger elected not to take Cesc back. He needs a forward who can create, beat his man off the dribble, and get shots in tight areas. Not another central midfielder.

There are a few players like that, in the £30-50m range.

Suarez-likes

First and foremost is Marco “Rolls You Like a Cheap Bum” Reus. The numbers speak for themselves: he’s a baller, a shot-caller, and he’s not bad in the height department either. Sadly, Reus just tore his MCMLXVII and is out of the World Cup and probably in rehab until… December? The good news is, Reus has a buyout clause and it’s only £35m. The ungood news is that it’s not activated until next year. Double plus ungood, BvB just sold Lewandowski to Bayern. As much as I wish Arsenal could just give Dortmund £45m and get the guy I can’t see them selling. Even if it means Dortmund will take a loss next summer when he will have his pick of suitors at £35m.

Next up is Hulk, butt of Banner jokes the world round. Hulk shoots too much from outside but that’s a habit I’m certain Arsene Wenger would drill out of him. His dribble numbers are redonculous and he’s a creator. But he cost Zenit St. Racistburg €55m and I’m sure they wouldn’t let him go for anything less than £45m. Which is a horrible fee for a 27 year old. If Arsenal can get him for £30m then I think that’s a good bit of business but unlikely to happen.

Balotelli is third and he shoots a lot: inside the box, outside the box, fireworks in his bathroom, his mouth off, himself in the foot, he’s a pure shooter. Would AC Milan sell Arsenal one of their star players? Would Wenger take on a nut case? He’ll probably win golden boot at the World Cup and do something crazy to lose in the semi-finals. How do I price a transfer here? Another one that if Arsenal are either willing to stump up the cash or if AC Milan will sell in the £30m range would be a great buy. He’s a dribbler and a shooter, could Wenger teach him to be a creator?

Sanchez seems to me like Arsenal’s most viable option. Look at his numbers and remember he’s on a team where he is third or fourth attacking option. His numbers are damn good for a player who doesn’t see much of the ball. As a bonus, he’s crazily efficient this season and won’t be going to the ACN. They don’t have an ACN in Chile do they? Bit of a gamble, also very right footed. Can play on the left as a false lefty. For £20m this transfer has Wenger eyes.

Remy is a fall back option in my estimation. He would add depth to Arsenal and at £14m is a decent buy. His numbers are all around OK but something about his game is offputting. He could be the victim of playing in a poor side but then again, if Suarez played in a poor side would he put up Remy’s numbers? I think Suarez would be putting up much bigger numbers.

Mandzukic? No thanks. If there was a Mandzukic snake and it had a head on each end, one head would be Mandzukic and the other would be Giroud and they would be eating themselves.**** I know, he’s got “great movement” but he can’t dribble and at least Giroud has that little flick he does.

Finnbogason would be great at Stoke. I’ve seen him play. His numbers don’t lie. He’s a decent player in a poor league. I don’t think he could make the jump.

And Benzema is, from what I understand, not for sale. Benzema is also a strange player: talented but seemingly happy playing third fiddle at Real Madrid. Is he the “demon on the pitch” that Wenger said was what attracted him to Suarez? I’ve not seen it and his career numbers don’t show it either. Look at the stats Sanchez puts up, Sanchez seems hungry, whereas Benzema seems happy to play with the handbrake on. We’ll probably buy him for £30m.

So there you go. There are some options to buy with the money we just saved by not buying Cesc and hopefully some reasonable reasons behind my options. And that won’t conclude Arsenal’s business this season either. Arsenal still need to finish the Aurier deal, get a defensive midfielder, and sign a backup keeper.

More on that stuff later!

 

@7amkickoff

*Per 90 is an imaginary number, taking all his minutes played and dividing them by 90 to give you an imaginary number of full games he played. This you can then divide by his shots taken or whatever and get a “shots per 90” number.
**Shots from outside the box score below 5% of the time even for great forwards.
***Close your eyes and say “juggling budgets” 5 times in the bathroom mirror with the lights off. When you open your eyes GERVINHO will appear behind you. Don’t worry, you’re safe. He couldn’t stab you in the back from 2 inches.
****I WOULD PAY YOU REAL MONEY FOR THIS IMAGE ON A TEE SHIRT

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GreekTragedy

A few thoughts on today’s post (why don’t you have a comments section at the bottom of your blogs fella?) While I, you, everyone who follows this wonderful club agree that what we need, indeed are screaming out for like a Per rant, is a ‘world class striker’ and as a result, Remy and Vela seem a little underwhelming, does it not seem to be the case that there really aren’t these strikers on the market who are viable options. Wenger spoke in January of this problem at the moment. At the moment the only player of top, top pedigree… Read more »

Jack

I’m a 72 in Fifa too but I don’t think Arsenal should sign me.

Remember the invincibles

This all seems so unreasonable. There is no one bar cesc available in the market right now. just sign cesc and if later we have an opportunity to sign a striker, it’s not like we don’t have the money. Surely we can make 2 30m purchases in one window?
I just want cesc back.

Garyneville Shagshismum

“Finnbogason would be great at Stoke. I’ve seen him play. His numbers don’t lie. He’s a decent player in a poor league. I don’t think he could make the jump.” His numbers do lie. He’s not even in the starting line-up in the Icelandic national team managed by Lars Lagerback. For example, Ajax’s Sigthorsson (wich Wenger has been following since he was a kid) is a way better footballer. You might not believe it but you will have to trust me on this one, I’ve seen them play more often than most of you and went to school with them… Read more »

Jack

I played with Bergkamp a lot when we were kids. I couldn’t say who was the better player.

TommyGooner

So a player with potential? That’s an interesting new angle for Arsenal to try.

Bring in the younglings

We can only buy what people are selling. Its going to be one of Remy or Morata.

Phil

Why not get both? Remy can play on the wings too, and he’s been linking up with Giroud well for France. He’d be depth on the wings and a solid back-up for Giroud, while Morata would be a good player to bring off the bench and to start when Giroud’s knackered and Remy’s playing.

My Name is Difficult to Pronounce

We won’t need a left winger if Podolski can always play the way he did last night. Insane.

Loose

Podolski disappears and is lazy in too many games to be trusted as the only left winger.

Titus

I think there must be an issue in how we utilize Poldi. Because he was allways excellent for Cologne, so much so that the nickname for FC Cologne was FC Podolski. And there is a reason he got 100+ caps for Germany. But somehow he fail to produce the same quality performances for Arsenal.

Aaron

@Titus: If you look at Poldi’s stats, offensively, he’s been amazing for us! Correct me if I’m wrong, but I think he may have the best goals to minutes ratio of anyone else in our team currently! The reason that Wenger doesn’t select as often as he could is because defensively, he’s quite weak and with Gibbs marauding down the left flank we need a winger who offers a bit more defensive protection (which Santi provides more than Lukas).

Master Bates

I was under that impression too , Whenever Wenger say we are looking for top top quality if available ,and that’s why we signed Ozil and that’s why I am fucking pissed off we didn’t sign Cesc .

We better sign Cavani or some other genuinely world class/top player .

Titus

It is not hard to understand that we have more pressing concerns than finding another CAM. We allready bought perhaps the best CAM in the world over the previous 3 Seasons in Özil, and we have Rosicky, Cazorla, Ramsey, Wilshere and Chamherlain capable of filling the same role. So it makes perfect sense why Wenger want to spend his money elsewhere in more precarious positions on our team like RB, CB, CDM and Striker. And to get the quality he want in these positions, spending 30 mill on another CAM which is a position where we got ample and world… Read more »

Cygan's Magical Left Foot

The problem he won’t spend the money else where. How many times do you have to build your hope to only get crashed. The only reason he is not buying Fab is because he is not under 15 mil. He will sign Remy for 8/10 mil, that French guy from Hampton 10/12 mil, Jenk right back and free transfer GK and fourth place trophy here we come. if it comes 31 of Aug and that is not true I will never post here. But, I will come the next three summers like the last few summers and say told you… Read more »

Ken

For DM.. Sunzu, would be an absolute bargain. Dont know why we didnt get him before.
Plays for Sochaux, big strong talented very hard working and big game player. About £5mil and would love Arsenal.

Canadian Gunner

I think that signing Remy or Morata is settling for whats available. Even though there is no distinct need to sign Cesc, there are 2 reasons to do it anyways. 1. Adding Cesc would give us more depth, something we could have used near the tail end of the season when Ramsey, Ozil, Walcott etc were out injured. 2. And I think this is just as important, if Cesc does not sign with Arsenal and is available to Chelski or Man U, then that is still a loss for Arsenal. You know for sure that if Arsenal has a 1st… Read more »

alex

Sanchez would be brilliant, can’t for the life of me work out why Barca want rid. As you mentioned, his numbers are very good for someone who isn’t top dog at their club, but equally impressive is how he leads from the front for Chile. He’s a player who can make the most of more limited time on the ball but also who can succeed without his Barca teammates. Apparently there is a strong link at the moment to Pedro, who would also seem to fit the bill fairly well, but if Alexis is available I can’t see why we… Read more »

renaissancerosicky

Fair amount of Insigne rumours going around… Anyone who watches Serie A have much of a clue about him? I thought he looked pretty good against us in the game in Naples.

Titus

I think he primarily play out on the left. Checked his numbers and he creates alot of chances for teammates. But he is an awfull finisher scoring only 3 goals out of 83 shots. Someone need to tell him to stop shooting :p Also he had 36 games, created 59 chances, and got 6 assists.

So 36 appearances, 83 shots, 3 goals and 59 created chances, 6 assist’s. Not very mind boggling in terms of numbers atleast.

Miranda

He’s very good, a great prospect, but Napoli have no reason to sell him, and certainly not for the paltry 17m we’re supposedly offering – though according to them we’ve not made an offer at all. Was this story simply invented or did Arsenal deliberately feed it to the media to keep the fans’ spirits up, or to see how it goes down with the player, or as smokescreen for an interest in somebody else? Whatever, it can only mean Insigne is a transfer that’s highly unlikely. Morata? Forget him as well. He said he’d prefer Juve (probably under the… Read more »

DöubleDöubleDöuble

Conjecture, confirmation bias, and some more conjecture.

Explain how you know intimate details of Arsenal’s and Chelsea’s transfer strategies, because if you don’t have that knowledge then most of your last two paragraphs are just gut feeling presented as fact.

ZDR

Jeez, what is a comments section if not conjecture and bias? Give it a rest, sir, and let the man express himself.

Miranda

Well, I wouldn’t call Chelsea’s and our transfer activity over recent years a conjecture or an ‘intimate detail’. Unfortunately more of a historical reality. Nothing very intimate about this (from the Guardian) either: “Chelsea have made an offer to Atlético Madrid in compliance with the buyout terms in Diego Costa’s contract, and have been advised that the player has provided notice to Atlético Madrid invoking the buyout clause and directing the club to accept Chelsea’s offer,” a club source confirmed to Press Association Sport. Chelsea look forward to entering into formal transfer documentation with Atlético Madrid as soon as possible… Read more »

DöubleDöubleDöuble

“The willingness to buy players who’ll improve you, especially when they’re available to you for peanuts, is one of the differences between Chelsea and us. They WANT to improve; improvement is their aim, so they ask themselves, ‘Do we want this player?’ If the answer is yes, they go out and get him, no messing about. We ask ourselves, ‘Do we NEED him?’ to which the answer is invariably no. Well, obviously. We don’t need anyone, not really.” That is pure conjecture – if you don’t think it is, then you need to buy a better dictionary, or you need… Read more »

Ken

Another thing about stats is that well… somehow guys like Giroud can look good but then what are his stats against anyone top 6? We need big game players. Most of Girouds goals could have been scored by Bendtner. I dont see how £45 mil would be “an awful price for a 27 year old”.. when you say he is ridonculously good and when Suarez is older and would cost far more, and by your own stats only had the one standout season with Liverpool before was worth any cop? And Remy based on above stats is looking overall Better… Read more »

Ken

Van Persie looked pretty average this year under Moyes and won player of the season and golden boot years prior so its very risky going purely off a table as above.

Ken

Doubledouble Pretty much EVERYONE outside of Arsenal forms their opinions off what they can see.. from outside Arsenal. They hear Wenger talking about “nothing being done before the World Cup”.. “only super super players” Then you see Chelsea wrap up a monster, star striker aged 25!!! from the team that beat Real Madrid and Barcelona to the Spanish title on a budget, and go for around £35 mil… weeks before World Cup starts. When was the last time Arsenal got a marquee signing so quick into transfer season? How many transfer seasons have we waited till last minute? When was… Read more »

Phil

Ideally, we’d end up with Aurier, Schneiderlin and Remy for about 35-40 million. Then a promising young CB and a veteran, just over the hill or a hungry young keeper for competition with Szczesny for about 15-20, and that leaves 60 million for a striker, assuming the 100 million budget is true. For that, I’d be aiming for Benzema. I just don’t see Wenger wanting Balotelli given his attitude problems, and Mandzukic is the player I’d get if Giroud got homesick for France, not necessarily as a competitor with him. Maybe Benzema for about 30-35 and then Griezmann? I certainly… Read more »

Finsbury Park Gooner

The £100 million budget isn’t true.

Andy Mack

I think 100m+ is available for the right players BUT I think that would be for the whole package (inc salaries) rather that just purchase price.

Flambo

The 100m has to include wages for new players and also the January window budget according to Jeremy Wilson.

Kiggeman

“The right players isn’t available during the January window” – Arsene Wenger.

“We’ll only buy players if they can add quality.” – Arsene Wenger.

*Turning Down Offer to buy fabregas* *FACEPALM*

Cygan's Magical Left Foot

Flamo,

No one ever count the transfer budget with the wages, the wages goes out from the yearly expenses.

Arsenal said they have 100 million for TRANSFER not including wages. Is Arsene going to spend it? I doubt it and watch us get 4th again.

Arsene IS the problem.

DöubleDöubleDöuble

Serge Aurier seems to be the person talking up a move to Arsenal, even his agent has said that Arsenal aren’t currently in for him.

Gutbukket Deffrolla

All of what the others contradicted your estimates with plus…. You said yourself 35-40 + 15-20 million for players before getting a striker. Then you used the lowest number to provide a 60 million pot available for a striker. Even on your own hopeful guesstimates that could also be as little a 40 million and that prices us out of any competition for a truly top striker. No top striker has only one potential purchaser unless he has declared they, and no other, are who he wishes to join. These “We can get so and so for such and such… Read more »

EgyptianGooner

Re : Insigne..pure crap from the media. Napoli wont sell Insigne hea big over in Italy. One of their best youngsters. Sanchez/Pedro seems very realistic and both would be class for us to be honest. Add to them a RB a DM (Schneiderlin anyone?) And we would’ve barelt spent 55M

Kiggeman

No Cesc Fabregas but Morgan Schneiderlin? …He is not even that good..

49er

I rarely doubt Wenger but I can’t believe he is not going for Cesc.

Andy Mack

I’ll believe the media (and ‘sources’) when I see he’s signed for another team.
Until then, it’s still a possibility.

jack jack jack

I can, much as I love our Cesc. 1. Wenger doesn’t like to bring in more than 3 players in one window, 4 would be a stretch. 2. We need to bring in a back-up keeper, a new right-back, a centre-back, and a centre forward at the very least. 3. We are remarkably well-stocked in the creative central midfielder position. 4. We have limited (but very healthy) financial resources. Therefore, while Cesc is a fantastic footballer who would definitely improve our squad, he’s not a necessity. 1 or 2 seasons ago Wenger would have bitten Barca’s hand off to have… Read more »

Jack

Well put. I see you like my name.

Zen

I think not buying cesc would be a horrible decision. He’s certainly a great player.
Buying someone this talented at a price of 30 m is a must.
And looking at why we lost the title last year had made it even an easier decision.
Ozil and Ramsey got injured for a long period of time. After that we hardly find a goal.
People may say we have many strong midfielders, but in my opinion it’s not enough.

Kiggeman

And we’ll end up with 0 until the last week of the window as always, that’s when Wengers window start.

Cygan's Magical Left Foot

to correct you, in the summer of 2002 Arsene signed 8 players and after the 8/2 humiliation he signed 5 in one go and three previously.

He started this 2 or 3 signing just this season to avoid signing what is needed. those 2 and are GK, striker (Remy) and maybe a midfielder.

Arsene IS the Problem.

Andy Mack

AWs said he prefers to sign less than 6 players per season (or was it per window…) ever since he joined us. The fact that he hasn’t always done that is why it’s a preference, rather than a rule. He says that it disrupts the squad ‘team spirit’ which is very important to him. We’ll only know how many players he’s signed when the window closes. We may have offers in with 5 top players now (unlikely) but the Arsenal way is to keep it quiet until it’s a done deal. It doesn’t always work but less is known of… Read more »

Loop A Hole

TBH, I’d rather see him go to Chelsea rather than United.
“Fabregas passes to van Persie, aaaaand .. he scores !!” is a cry I never want to hear again.

Gutbukket Deffrolla

Wenger doesn’t think bringing more than 3 or 4 players into a team is good because it takes time to integrate them all. I don’t think you should count a back up goalie in that number as he is just a goalie when all is said and done. If he can save shots and has half a brain he will be easy enough to integrate. It’s the outfield players you have to worry about. Having said that, Fabregas would not take much time integrating into a Wenger squad. So Fabregas, Striker, DM, CB, RB, GK would be fine in my… Read more »

Az Ahmed

I am hoping Wenger is being clever with the Cesc situation, waiting on all the suitors of Fabregas to make concrete offers, which, because of the clause, we have to be told about, and then comes in with his own offer. I think there is much more to the situation than meets the eye, because how could anyone in their right mind pass up Cesc Fabregas, a player who is BETTER than Ozil, worth £50M-£60M in todays market, while he is available at the £30M mark. It seems ludicrous and like complete insanity. I am hoping there is a plan… Read more »

Sue H

Would really like to know where all this noise about Cesc is coming from?

Why cant people stop speculating. The transfer window isn’t even open yet and I’m already sick of it.

Imarnuel_AFC

There’s a lot of talk about a DM, I don’t see it happening if Flamini and Arteta stay. Alexis. Would be a great attacking addition. Pace, strong on the ball, in and around the box, goals, creates also.. Ticks many boxes.

VCC

“BvB just sold Lewandowski to Bayern.” No they didn’t! He ran out his contract

My Name is Difficult to Pronounce

Same difference, mate 🙂

Andy Mack

It’s quite a big difference as they’ve know about it and had time to prepare for at least 4 months.

Finsbury Park Gooner

“***Close your eyes and say “juggling budgets” 5 times in the bathroom mirror with the lights off. When you open your eyes GERVINHO will appear behind you. Don’t worry, you’re safe. He couldn’t stab you in the back from 2 inches.”

THIS made me laugh my morning tea out of my nose, so thanks for that.

Tim

Made me laugh too.

Dial square

Remy always comes across as a bit average to me, I think Wilfred Bony would suit us perfectly and is in Wenger’s price bracket..

DöubleDöubleDöuble

We’re buying El Hadji Diouf. You heard it here first. And last. If there is one thing I have learnt from Wenger being our manager over the last 317 years, it’s that nobody has a clue who he intends to buy. I don’t even think Dick Law or Ivan Gazidis do. I’m not entirely convinced that Wenger would even tell Mrs Wenger if she threatened to withhold Le Nookie (not sure if it’s masculine or feminine, so La Nookie perhaps?). Due to Wenger being so cagey, everytime he mentions that a player is good we will be linked to them… Read more »

Al Gilmore

Sanchez is the one I’d plump for and, like Cesc, I can’t for the life of me work out why they’d sell him. But clearly Barca are having a rethink – otherwise known as ‘throwing the baby out with the bathwater’ and we can be the beneficiaries of that – instead of losing players to Barca. My second choice would be Benzema but he’s a bit of an enigma – looks disinterested in some games but in others looks great – the away leg against Bayern was a masterclass in playing the centre forward role and holding the ball up/laying… Read more »

deano

Watched Germany last night to see how our lads got on. Reus injury didn’t look good but wow I didn’t think it looked like a six month injury either. Per his usual reliable self, Mesut did well but boy Poldi was a monster.

Reckon Sanchez might be the man for us. Giving up on quality like Cesc, I can’t say I would do cart wheels about getting a Remy.

Policeman's Bangers 'N' Mash

“Since then Arsenal lost Cesc and Nasri and then van Persie and Arshavin replacing them with Cazorla, Podolski, and Giroud and the results are fairly clear: Arsenal’s attack fell off.”

Wake me up when this nightmare ends (when we sign a player better than Cesc). And if we sign a central mid Wenger I’ll come round your house and nick your milk.

Momo (@MuhamLAD)

Cesc -> Ozil
Nasri -> Cazorla
Arshavin -> Podolski
RVP -> Giroud

Not really much of a difference aside from RVP

Scott P

I have to believe that Poldi will do better at Arsenal than Arshavin

Az Ahmed

Agree with all except Arshavin>Podolski

The Red Cannon

Personally for me it would be both remy and sanchez or just balotelli. Sanchez isnt really a number 9 but would be fantastic on the left whereas remy would be competition for giroud. However balotelli could be world class given mentoring. We all know the positives and negatives with him. Ideally i would get sanchez and balotelli but i dont think that likely, but hey arsene suprise me!

ketones

How about Bony, Swansea have a 19m asking price for him? I know it’s his first season and second season syndrome and all that – but isn’t he worth looking at?

Also Doumbia is on the last year of his contract and has been playing well at CSKA. Certainly has the pace that Giroud lacks, could be an option?

Neil

I like bony. Would prefer him to Remy to be honest. He scores against the big teams too. Some say he only scored as many as Giroud, but this was Bony’s first season. He was pants until Christmas while he adjusted and was pretty damn fine in the second half of the season. He managed 17 PL goals for the season but 13 of them came from Jan onwards (13 in 19). I’m not sure he’s a one season wonder as he’s always scored loads of goals. Like I said, he seems to score in big games, a bit like… Read more »

Merlin's Panini

Bony was best when he was at Trapdoor. Oh globbits!

Miranda

The better question, if you like Bony, is why didn’t we look at him a year or more back when the price was a fraction of what Swansea are now asking? Ditto with Remy who’s been around for seemingly aeons, being offered to Liverpool two years back, even to Stoke. Laudrup bought Michu for £2m, an excellent central defender of pennies and Bony for 12m. For us to be considering paying a sizeable fee for someone else’s bargain finds, doesn’t reflect on our scouting that well. Remember the time when it was better than anyone’s, especially for French and French-speaking… Read more »

Titus

We we’re linked with Bony the summer when we signed Giroud. What i like with Bony is that he knows how to throw his weight around and use his strenght. He is a nightmare for defenders to handle in a duel. I Remember When Swansea played Stoke, Stoke defenders tried to do the physical bullying as allways, but Bony where having none of it and put himself in respect using his superior strength. So Bony is a big boy that know how to utilize his size to his advantage. This is in Stark contrast to Giroud, for example when we… Read more »

Ken

Giroud is a fucking pussy honestly

Chris O

I respectfully disagree about Giroud getting bullied easily. He’s a handful for anyone 1v1 and his ability to position his body and use his core body strength to “box out” defenders is a match for even the biggest center halves, like Kompany, for example. His off the ball movement and willingness to stick his head in on contested balls in the box (including our box when defending free kicks) is admirable. You can’t fault Giroud or anyone else for protesting the multi-player hacking and rugby tackling that he got at Stoke and some other places this year while playing up… Read more »

Kiggeman

I don’t see all this whine on Giroud, Jheez, I know he isn’t fast, I know he lacks pace. This is why everyone wants several options upfront depending on the opposition. But Giroud has scored _40_ goals for us over a time of 2 seasons, now his price wasn’t very high, £10m? 😛 He’s done a great job for arsenal so far let’s not forget that.. 40 goals on 2 seasons is quite impressive stats for a striker, I know he doesn’t create so much opportunities alone but he is an important player. I get really pissed off with fans… Read more »

Jack

If Giroud played for Bayern Munich, he would be a respectable goalscorer, similar to Mandzukic, and we’d have fans saying, get him, we need him, X&Y aren’t good enough. A little perspective is useful. Giroud is what he is: a good striker who scored 22 goals for us this season. He should have done better against Chelsea, Utd and one or two others, but his contribution has been important and even with a top striker, he has a part to play for us next season.

Gutbukket Deffrolla

Are we short of pace?

Obi wan

Here’s one out of left field, we
Need a 3/4 choice centre back, hangalland has been realeased by Fulham, worth a punt on a free ?

JJ

Surprised to see Lukaku’s name hasn’t been mentioned as yet…

Master Bates

Unrealistic Chelsea/Mou wouldn’t want improve us. But we are totalling ok with them having Cesc to the Costa

ARiddlingName

We sold RVP to United, they sold Mata to United, and there’s been plenty of similar transfers.

If Lukaku pushes for a transfer then it’s possible.

Not saying it will happen or it will be easy, it’s unlikely but it’s definitely not impossible.

Phil

Us selling RVP to United is the same problem that’s cropped up time again with Nasri and all the other bottom-feeders we’ve sold to City over the years. It’s bad business- we’ve sold top players to our direct rivals, when they’d still have been in demand overseas.

Mata to United wasn’t Chelsea selling to a competitor, it was handcuffing Mata to the rail of a sinking ship and flipping him the bird. Or at least that’s how I’d like to look at United’s future.

c1ee

Look at the way Liverpool reacted to Arsenal trying to nick Suarez. They totally went bonkers. They were mad and they let everyone know it. They knew they had to keep their best player AND not let their direct competitor snatch him away. They gave him a fat new contract and told him to put up or shut up.

And what a correct decision it was.

And this is exactly what we should have done RVP.

Neil

I hope Arsene has learned his lesson. Even if that clown calls us and says he’s available, I would fart down the phone and hang up.He’ll lead us on all summer and pull out at the last minute, just like he does with his sister to avoid another deformed baby like John Terry.

Kiggeman

Send in a £60m bid for Cavani or Falcao, wait and see what happends. And why the fuck are we not going for Sanchez or Pedro Rodriguez? Who are available for a fairly small sum xD.

Cavani or Falcao would be a dream to get here.. But it’s unrealistic to hope for.

Kiggeman

Also Bernard from Sjachtar Donetsk!

DR

A small, young midfielder with plenty of potential but no experience.

Yay.

Kiggeman

One of the biggest talents in world football, would you say no to Bernard for a sum like £19m like it’s been rumoured? Don’t say no xD

Gutbukket Deffrolla

Problem is, (other than paying him at a 60 million pound player wage rate if we got him) once Cavani turns us down for whatever mega-team can offer him a million a month then every other striker we go for will start at an excessive price because we are obviously so desperate we’re willing to pay anything. Trouble is we are Arsenal, so we can’t, because if we fall foul of FFP we can’t afford the 50 million fine.

Aaron

Easily has to be Pogba. We need a DM, he is perfect. £30m plus some more depending on what they are asking, and go get him. We need a DM more than we needed Cesc anyway

lordgunner

exept pogba isnt a DM he play box to box , he is very much the new vieira, tall powerfull fast skillfull player but unlike PV4 on the nuts side too

craig

No way Pogba is going anywhere for 30m. You’d be closer if you doubled it.

Gutbukket Deffrolla

Plus the £3m “English Weather” bonus in his annual paypacket.

Robstar

Does anyone actually know our transfer budget? Where’s Swiss Ramble when you need him.

Miranda

Swiss Ramble did a long article three years back with the title, ‘Can Arsenal afford not to spend?’. It was about how investing in players generates wealth, providing you buy well (as Bayern do). Leaving the money to moulder in the bank isn’t frugal; it’s dumb. Whatever’s available – the AST say 100m – its sensible to use it to build the best squad that you can.

Ranjan

What about edurado vargas of Chile…. Looks very promising forward/winger… is mainly right footed but has decent left foot…. has scored 14 goals for chile in 30 games… and is fast….

Gargoyle

This article was more about who we shouldn’t buy, rather than who we should.

Gar14

Maybe we’re just waiting for a bid to be accepted for Cesc before we go for him. Then we could put our first choice clause into action.

If Chelsea knew we wanted him, they would just increase their initial bid to 50+ million which we would have to match. True, i’m probably grasping at straws but something about Cesc going to Chelsea doesnt seem right. He hates mourinho, he hates their playing style. mourinho doesn’t use slow unathletic playmakers who don’t like to track back and park the bus. I’m just so confused.

Andy Mack

Well said.

No More Sprouts

I saw the headlines this morning “Arsenal’s first signing of the summer” and I though Aurier? Remy? Draxler? Benzema or even Hulk? So I clicked on the webpage and opened it up, eagerly anticipating the exciting news and was it any of these players ?

No it was a 17 year old left back called Elias Chatzitheodoridis from our Greek academy and and I thought to myself here we go, nothing changes does it ?

Robstar

I think that’s a little harsh mate. Only Liverpool have signed players and one of them signed because he could go back to his moms house. Most other English clubs are weaker from the players they have let go or sold. I can’t believe I am saying this but give it time. A summer with a World Cup is never easy to get things done but we have a stronger hand this year.

ARiddlingName

It’s a signing for the youth team.

How dare we strengthen our youth team and not make 50m buys before the TW even opens, right?

Gooner4lifeFozzy

Let’s just break the bank, smash the world transfer record and buy Messi!!!! Then we could play all our midfielders as DM’s and let Messi do the rest as he can play anywhere! Lol

Gutbukket Deffrolla

Yes, I hear Barcelona are having to cut back on player wages and he’s sure to be the first player they will want to get rid of. They’ll only want to keep their cheapest players, right?

David

If Wenger could buy Ozil for 43M even though we didn’t “need” him why would he not buy Cesc for 30M? Arteta and Flamini would be out of cotracts next year, Carzola will be 30 this year, we can’t expect so much from Diaby yet and Rosicky will be 34 shortly. Cesc won’t be available next summer and not buying him now will be a MISTAKE. You can’t have “too” many good players.

DR

We needed Ozil.

We don’t need Cesc.

I know we’d all LIKE Cesc but we only have limited resources, unlike some clubs, especially if the guff about the 100m covering wages as well holds to be true.

Gutbukket Deffrolla

We need players who can adapt to the PL in their first year, rather than players who ‘might’ be better in their second. Ozil is the big name, but he isn’t yet the player he was before he joined us, we are still waiting for some Classic Ozil Action. He’s good, but he’s not the finished article as a PL player yet. Cesc would be comfortable from the start (unless he’s being sold because his knees have gone).

Richard

Just cannot believe arsenal. To let cesc go and strengthen the fair play cheats is so wrong. We need a lot players due to the fact we get so many injuries. We have to make a statement. But as usual we will go for cheap second level players. Gazidas is the problem. When they bought ozil they needed a world class forward with him but we end up with sanogo. Let’s see

Gutbukket Deffrolla

We didn’t have the money for a world class striker as well as Ozil last summer. That 43 million or whatever it was was Wenger using all the money he had left to grab a last minute opportunity. Maybe we do have the money this summer. However, we should go for Fabregas NOW purely because us taking him back from Barcelona in his prime because it would shout our newly strengthened situation out to the world… and the world includes all those players we might want to buy after the world cup is done. If we can tell potential world… Read more »

mondo

Here’s the plan: wait until Chelski puts in an official bid for Cesc, then when they think they have him and on the last day of the window at the 23 hour snap him up. Two fingers up to the blue losers.

Gutbukket Deffrolla

First options don’t work like that. They’re more “Do you want him?” “No” “Well piss off then, you had your chance, we’ll sell him to Chelski or Citeh or PSG or Marseille or United or QPR…”

naughty one

His hair doesn’t move, his hair doesn’t moooooveeee.

mikel arteta, his hair doesn’t move.

Benriz

I’m pissed off about Cesc. Not buying him for 30 mil is a big mistake. I’ve got a bad feeling about this transfer window now and it’s making my stomach feel all weird.

DR

Yeah, I really wish we could stockpile players like City or Chelsea but we simply can’t.

It’s going to make everyone sick seeing Cesc in a Chelsea shirt (can you imagine him hugging Terrry after scoring or something?) but the money can be spent better elsewhere so we have to prioritise,

c1ee

A smart GM/manager will make it work. Sell the players who are not needed then. That’s the manager’s job, to make the hard decisions to make the TEAM better.

Benriz

Mondo, if that actualy happened it would be amazing!

pedro

I hate transfer windows.

I don’t like watching Maureen have Cesc either.

Neil

It would be nice to see Arsene play silly games with Maureen for a change. Hopefully, he’s already spoken to Cesc and he’s coming to Arsenal, but will lead Maureen a merry dance until the window closes. Cesc would be a fucking legend for ever if he agreed to do it. Personally, I would take it right up to the medical stage. Have Maureen call the press in so he can gloat at us by having him sign in front of the cameras. Then, Cesc stands up, farts on the contract and in walks Arsene with a contract and says… Read more »

DC

Suarez … because he’s such an offensive beast.

Too true!

srle

“But now that Arsenal have ruled out Cesc”

I am curious as to how exactly you know that?

Comedian

so is our transfer just 30 million? Are we fools to insert the buy back and first refusal clause to let Cesc go to Chelsea. Also will brand him a cunt if he does join Chelsea as Real were in for him when he was at Arsenal but just for players wish we sold him to Barca at a very cheap price. Also buy back clauses are suppose to cheaper but for our case its different reports of chelsea or other team buying him for 26 million pounds while we should pay 30 million of buy back clause. And are… Read more »

The Doctor

Sanchez seems like the best bet if his heart’s not set on Juventus (not that they can afford him).

Out of left field surprise signing a-la Ozil: Thomas Muller.

He’s not an out-and-out CF, but can play across the front three or behind the striker if needed – the kind of versatility Arsene would like. Has made public statements about wanting his role in the Bayern team clarified as Pep doesn’t start him much, is friends with Poldi and co, and described Arsenal’s style as ‘beautiful’ this past year. Would probably cost £40m, though.

GU1TAR-D3MON

Look I’m all for us making signings but you’d think that we haven’t won anything in a bagillon years the way people are losing their shit about transfers… People need to take a deep breath and calm the fuck down… We need to let go of Cesc, the fans, yes he is a great player and yes you can talk about depth and whatnot but realistically speaking we do not need Cesc, however with that being said I would rather sign him than see him go to any of these clubs in England… Great article though, unlike many other “who… Read more »

Thierry Bergkamp

Of course we need Cesc. He’s better than what we have (or on a par with Ozil) now. We obviously needed to strengthen midfield, which is why we got Kallstrom, who won’t return. What’s the point in buying average to make up the numbers, when you can have the best to come in and be the main man.

arseman

Insigne and Griezmann. How exciting? And a strong DM

Mental strength

You can’t move forward if you go back to the past. I think not going for fabregas makes sence, even though I feel sick when I think he might play for chelski. I think wenger is closely monitoring zelalem, remember fabregas was also of similar age when he broke into the team, personally I think that’s a wise decision i hope we don’t regret it though.

Merlin's Panini

I would like us to try to sign a striker, just anyone decent (as good as Giroud at least), and a pacey winger. Someone like Remy Cabella. He’s got good feet, he quick, very much in the Pires mould and gave us a horrible time when we played Montpellier in the Champions League. He was a bit divey but that’s something we could iron out.
Maybe we could start a collection of Remy’s?

Ahmed

My question is why arsenal players like Wilshere, Ramsey, Rosicky, Flamini etc who were Cesc ex teammates and friends dont welcome or show that they would welcome him if he signs for Arsenal in their Twitter or Facebook? Do they fear competion?

Neil

Perhaps a few of them weren’t happy with him going on strike as captain and generally stropping for a move.

Gutbukket Deffrolla

They may have been told to stay off Twitter, or even to stay silent on any potential signings.

Thierry Bergkamp

I haven’t wanted a player as much as Reus, since I wanted us to get Silva from Valencia in around 08

ramsey's spirit

IF we are looking for an out and out striker we should try and bully milan into selling balotelli, if were looking for a left winger/striker combo why in the fuck spend 14mill on remey for that…when theres 3m for vela?

Swedegunner

Vela doesn’t want to come apparently. He’s so happy and giddy and jolly in Spain he wants to stay there. Or not, who knows? Fucking papers

Vonnie

Cesc has a lot of issues with his private life and wants to live in London to be near his child. He was very publicly dating a married woman with two children who then divorced her very wealthy businessman husband. I don’t think this went down well in conservative Spain, and is probably a lot to do with his unpopularity at Barca. There was then a court case in London when Cesc bought a property from her ex-husband for her to live in. The bottom line is that Cesc will do what it takes to live in London and he… Read more »

Gutbukket Deffrolla

Fuck It!!!!!!! I had put that shit right out of my mind until you went and spoiled it. Bloody Darren Bloody Dein the Bloody Team-Ripping Bastard.

Tanmay

****photoshop, here I come! ****

andy

out of all those i would jump on the chance to buy sanchez. he is a superstar. doubt we would get him for less than 34-40m though and not sure barca would want to see him. failing that, balotelli would be a great buy but a huge gamble. i would probably prefer us to take vela back or get morata in as one for the future. to be fair, there it not a whole lot of quality on the market this summer so i’m not too optimistic about us being able to add much more than depth to out current… Read more »

danitup

If we were willing to pay 40M for Suarez, we should be willing to pay the same for Sanchez.

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