Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Danny Welbeck, Arsenal centre-forward

In the wake of the deadline day signing, we asked Man United fan and all round good egg @BeardedGenius for his thoughts on the move. After some days of tears and sadness, he duly obliged.

Danny Welbeck, Arsenal centre-forward. It doesn’t seem right to me. I’m not sure it ever will. His name on the team sheet always made me smile the most. I love Danny. And not in that twee hyperbolic Twitter way. I exaggerate on there, camping it up for comedy effect. The truth is I’m really proud of our boy and will always want him to do well.

He’s a Mancunian lad who talks like us and plays like we would, if given half the chance. He reminds me a bit of my little brother. It’s really weird but in the absence of any Asian players or anyone of remotely Pakistani origin (Di Maria? Possibly?) Welbeck feels like the closest thing. I know it sounds stupid but that’s how I feel.

He’s from Longsight, which is very multi-cultural. I’ve got a lot of friends from there and used to work nearby at McVities. It’s not the most affluent place in the world but it’s got that sense of burning ambition that conurbations of African and Asian diaspora can generate and spark. It’s the kind of place that people leave but it never leaves them.

And now Danny’s left Longsight. And Manchester United. We can debate why and how as much as we want. The truth is we don’t really know. The fact will remain that he is an Arsenal player now. I know a lot of Arsenal fans were a little … underwhelmed by the signing, I strongly suspect they’ll soon change their minds.

I don’t claim to be objective about Welbeck, but neither is my sadness based purely on blind affection. There is so much to admire about the footballer. No opposition defender or deep-lying middle man will get a moments rest whilst Danny’s about. His work rate is phenomenal and his huge gangly gait eats up yards in the most deceptive way.

He is a formidable athlete with a rude change of pace for a six footer. Broad shoulders and an imposing frame have only filled out properly in recent years and he now holds himself strong and tall, whereas previously he could cut a languid, apologetic figure. He was too nice. He’s learnt how to bully and gained some welcome arrogance.

The obvious counter to any praise is as predictable as it is true: he is a goalscorer who doesn’t score enough goals. His main fault – which is kind of problem for a striker – is his finishing. It is there in black and white statistics and clips of wayward one-on-ones. The only thing I can say to that is just wait and see … it’s not the strongest argument granted.

At United he was never the star man, and rarely the focal point. He was always good ol’ Danny. The kid with the smile on his face, happy enough to start on the bench or play on the wing. On occasions he’d even start up front like a real striker, but only when it didn’t really matter or someone else was poorly sick.

You cannot learn a trade properly if you’re only ever handing tools to another craftsman. You can’t tone your skills by proxy. Welbeck was always plugging holes, performing selfless duties for the greater good. At United it would always remain thus. In the nicest possible way, the club took advantage of his benignity.

At Arsenal he won’t just be part of the furniture. He’s the expensive new capture who I will, I hope, act as fulcrum of the attack. Purely through being purchased rather than a product of nurture he will have greater stock and stature. Leaving Old Trafford was key if he wanted to be taken seriously. Time to be selfish, not selfless.

And all the raw ability is there. He has everything that is required to bloom into a formidable striker. I know I’ve largely focused on his physical attributes but that does him a disservice. He’s sharp of mind and technically gifted. He will love having quick-witted forwards around him and relish Arsenal’s one-touch passing.

I suppose it all comes down to two things: How much do you trust your manager, and how much does he trust Danny? With a right coach, who truly believes in him and gives him that unstinting faith to perform in his correct position, he will flourish. I am sure he will reward that trust.

It hurts to say it but Danny Welbeck, Arsenal centre-forward is right. He deserves that. He isn’t ‘dat guy’. He’s a man to be taken seriously. Front and centre, at long last.

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Welbeck is a GOONER !!!!


This is your time Danny boy. Forget not your Manchester roots. Respect you get from us Gooners as footballer you are. This is your time – that Central attack beckons. COYG!


“He will love having quick-witted forwards around him”

Who could he possibly be referring to?


For those who gave my comment a thumbs down, I was pointing out that @BeardedGenius clearly hinted that until now Welbeck has been playing with players who are less than “quick-witted”


Don’t bother the general IQ level is quite low around these parts.


Don’t bother explaining yourself buddy 🙂

Formerly Known As El Capitano

A really interesting read, especially since its written by a United fan. I’m first to admit that as described in the article, I am part of the fan base that was ‘underwhelmed’ on deadline day by his signing. I definitely agree that whether or not Danny will be successful at Arsenal will boil down to his relationship with Arsene. As much stick that Arsene has taken over the years, for not winning this, or signing that.. etc he has always been able to nurture any flicker of talent in a raw player. He does have an undeniable ability to turn… Read more »


Very good points. Wenger is key so let’s hope he likes him as much as he likes Sanogo and more than he likes Podolski. It all depends on why Wenger bought him. Is this a player he has long liked the look of and wanted? Or was it a panic buy as a result of Giroud’s injury? Players Wenger believes in he has endless patience with – e.g. Bendtner – players he doesn’t – e.g. Park – don’t fare so well. Welbeck is going to need time to find his striking feet and understand how his team-mates think. He hasn’t… Read more »


…a certain TH14 will be returning during the winter period for training as he always does – he will learn!


He’s played with RvP, Rooney, Berbatov, Hernandez in recent years. He’s seen them training week in week out, 4 elite finishers. His footballing education has been by players including Giggs, Ferguson, Ruud Van Nistelrooy. No one showed Ramsey how to finish. If anything RvP who should have honed him wanted him gone. It’s time for Welbeck to take his game to the next level himself. It’s nice for the players to have a legend to look and learn from but it’s not essential. I’ve attached a link of him being coached by Ruud. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vf9SOUOiNHQ


Excellent comment, some Gooners might have erased his Manure past the second he signed for us but the truth is Welbeck played with & learned from some of the best over there……now hopefully we reap the rewards for their work!!!!

Ramsey's Beard

Mark my words, Wenger will play him on the wing to accomodate Sanogo.

Formerly Known As El Capitano

I’m also terrified that could be the case.
I’m seriously hoping that its not.
I mean Yaya desperately needs a loan spell to develop and ultimately to see if he has the credentials to make it at a top club like Arsenal.
He cant keep playing up front for us for the moment, he is so clearly out of his depth, and I think in order for Danny to do well & flourish, he needs to be the main guy, so buying him to accommodate Sanogo would surely be counterproductive.


I’m terrified too. Also that this will lead to Joel Campbell not getting much of a chance.


But look on the bright side. He can’t play everyone on the left, not simultaneously, so Oezil will be able to move back to the middle


Don’t give him any ideas, Miranda.


I want to disagree with you but with Wenger there’s always that niggling doubt


Can’t see it, Welbeck is essentially a more developed Sanogo so it would be crazy, and even though it may not seem so at times, Wenger does things for sane reasons.


What is the sane reason for playing Sanogo to the detriment of the team?


What is the sane reason for the lack of bodies at CB?


no……thats our worst nightmare…dont think that way..it may happen 🙁

Podolski Sklep


Injured Gooner

How the fuck did we manage to sign a striker for 16 Mil? On deadline day with our lead striker out for 4 months? For 16? What the fuck are they smoking at ManU? I mean, to sell him to us? Woodward recons 3rd is an absolute must, meaning that he must be thinking we will end up 4th or something. We sold them Van Persie pretty much at the end of his first full un-interupted season for us in years. Sure he his goals helped them to their last title, but jeez, this kid has a good few years… Read more »


Loved the way he just ran to Ox and Chambers to celebrate his goal:):)

fellow gooner

also, while he was running towards them, he was shooting with imaginary guns. True gunner !


The Nord is really feeling the loss. CRICKEY
Danny Boy will never be put in a corner at Arsenel ( see what I did there)
He will shine like a diamond


yes we had our share of “park ‘ed strikers


Nobody puts Danny in a corner.


Loved the way he nicked the ball off a Swiss defender and blotted down the right wing, the cross was slightly delayed and a bit heavy, but you can see the potential


The miss was as much down to Sterling as the pass, if he had carried on and not just fallen over in front of goal, it would have been an assist.


Cant wait to see him againt man city, i hope he scores on his debut

2014-2015 = the year we've been waiting for

Can’t think of a better fixture to get Danny boy properly fired up!

yes nothing can be better “dan” that …


Nice effort, but weak.


he doesn’t have the most difficult job in the world really? all he;ll have to do is outshine Sanogo and you guys in this website especially will be demanding for he;s statue next to DB10. As far as I’m concerned hes Danny fuking Welbeck, and he’s gotta to play a 110% to not only make up for his existence but also that off Silvestre. To everyone be careful of the media influence/hype, try to make up your own minds for a change, dont allow all these websites to cloud your thoughts. I.e this fuking website. Few things: The Ox &… Read more »

Chelsea = Wankers

I hope he scores four on his debut.


I was distinctly irritated by his signing, although that was largely down to the reports that we were getting him on loan, which seemed madness. Having calmed down and seen him in an Arsenal shirt, I can certainly say that the next time I go to the Emirates, he will be getting my full support. Let’s hope this proves a master stroke, as the talent is there and so, it would seem, is the hunger.

Dave Gooner

I think Danny is a great signing, and for 16m, a complete steal in today’s market. Shows what van Gaal knows – all he can do is spend money in a blind panic. And I am really delighted for Danny Welbeck that he has joined a club where how good you are is what counts, rather than how much you cost. A proper football club.

Danny Welbeck has been superb at 9 in both outings for England, and he will be superb for us. At 16m, he could very well be the buy of the window.


Think that might be unfair to van Gaal. I’ve a strong suspicion he isn’t getting much say in the signings. The lunacy of what’s going on at United -we’re going to sign a galactico every season – looks to me like a Woodward policy motivated more by brand considerations than team-building. They’re scared shitless by their share values and the money-men are responding in the only way they know how.

Injured Gooner

Scary for them, lovely to see as a Gooner. We have had to play our way out of trouble year in year out like a normal club. Organically, if that is the correct way to go about things is the debate, Vs having the proper blend of experience and youth. How we managed to gain two English players in one window is beyond me. The fact that we got them for around the same amount of money as Liverpool payed for that guy Kenny signed from Newcastle makes them both a steel. How did we suddenly go from being one… Read more »


Yeah, I doubt Van Gaal had much to do with it. He didn’t get into the job until too late, and after last summer the Man U money men had decided they couldn’t afford another summer of dicking around not buying anyone. So I suspect they went ahead and started buying without really doing more than a brief consult with LVG. You don’t really get the impression he was behind any of the signings besides probably Davey Blind. All the others he basically just said nice neutral things after “too good a chance to pass up,” “great footballer” etc. Doesn’t… Read more »

Arsenal Wenger

Danny Welbeck, celebrator of his national team goals with his club colleagues.


Well I for one was singing out ARSENAL, when he scored.

2he0 Walcott

It’s the first time I’ve properly cheered an England goal when he stuck the first in. Was buzzing for him. Cant say I wasn’t a bit underwhelmed by the sighing but really looking forward to seeing him at The Arsenal now.


At Arsenal, we don’t buy world class players, we make them (someone used to tell me this a few years back, and although we’ve spent 42m and 35m on some world class talents in recent years, I still think that this is true for Welbeck’s case.. he just needs a manager that believes in him!)

Unyoke the Ox

Worst use of brackets I’ve ever seen.

Proper football is coming back.



Wow. Rarely have I seen such honest opinion about a player who has left your club. Im excited to see what the boy can do. Us fans have been crying out for a dynamic number 9 who holds theball up and I was sad to see all the negativity around his transfer from gooners all around the world on deadline day.

Cannot wait to see him make Joe Hart pick up the ball out of his own net this weekend.



A non-biased manc? Think I need a lie down.

Injured Gooner

Fuck yeah, I’m kinda freaked out about all this Man U grace and charm. What the fuck is up with all of that? Seems there is quite a bit of class surrounding this young man.


The jury’s out on this one, he’s one miss away from being shit and one lucky bobble away from being the new Jesus.
Welcome to Arsenal


Yeah, with people like you around that will sadly always be the case.


I took Rich’s comment to be an ironic one about the fickleness of some sections of our support….NOT a sceptical comment aimed at Welbeck. It seems quite a few people missed that.


Is he on twitter?


As there appear to be more and more Gooners in the England squad, and fewer and fewer Chelsea and Man Utd players, I feel more comfortable supporting England these days.


Remember when it was the other way around and Arsenal were absolutely crucified every time their starting line up was announced without an English player in there. Now Chelsea only have Cahill (purely due to lack of options at CB) but still nothing gets mentioned about this. Gotta love the anti-Arsenal agenda the media have, all the better when we prove them wrong


Also should note that many of our English players we’ve developed ourselves (Wilshere, Gibbs), or spent their formative footballing years with us (eg. at any other club Walcott would have just been a long ball target). Welbeck’s the only “marquee” English signing.

easy tiger

That fact should make the alarm bell ring heavily. You know since England is shit.

Formerly Known As El Capitano

I disagree, England don’t have shit players.
They just lack the ability / cohesion to play as a team.

Now whether that’s down to, stage fright, the wrong manager. the wrong playing style. or the fact that they all hate each other… its honestly hard to tell, I personally think its a bit of everything.
But the way that the majority of the England players perform for their clubs week in week out in the Premier League definitely proves that they aren’t shit players.


It can’t be the wrong manager because it’s been the same under all of them. I think it’s stage fright – for which there’s good reason. Look at the vitriol that’s poured on to Rooney and Wilshere, once Ingerlund’s young white hopes, mindlessly hyped the pundits, then equally mindlessly hated as soon as the pundits are feeling let down. Owen got it a bit. I predict Sterling is next in line for the treatment.


There’s nothing mindless about wanting Rooney out of the team, he was alright last night but his performances have been waning for a few years. A broken clock is right twice a day though, so I’m not giving the media too much credit for that!

If Sterling plays like that again, he’ll be in line for a shitton of criticism, as he was really poor aside from the one assist. Forgivable at 19 though.


Just wish they weren’t being played out of position. Wilshere isn’t a holding a midfielder and it must be miserable for him having to try and learn a position to which he’s completely unsuited and put a good face on it when he gets flack from the pundits. He’s a number 10, the only one England have. If Hodgson wants an Arsenal DM, I suggest he tries Chambers.


Arsenal player scores for England!
Let’s hope Wellbeck’s goal is the harbinger of many many more.
Open the floodgates Danny!


Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it’s dat guy Welbz!

No hating on Giroud but I think players like Özil and Cazorla will appriciate having a striker that can threaten in the chanels. Another target to latch on to their through-balls will only make us more unpredictable. Also his pace might make some coaches reconsider playing a high line against us. Not saying he’s our saviour but he gives us a lot of options up front on the tactical side of the game. Overall positive!


Aye, I know I’m in the minority here but thought the running of Sanogo really helped our attack against Leicester and but for a few finishes and a little more help from an abysmal midfield, things would have looked different; but they didn’t and now we have Welbeck, which is probably for the best.


I’m smiling from cheek to cheek thinking of the possible ways we can line up with a fit team n it’s giving me quite the pleasant headache. That would explain why I’m up at 2:00 am in the morning here in the US w/ work in 5 hours but can’t get Arsenal out of my mind. I need help…or Danny to score a couple against his former shitty neighbors 😉

Gooner from Pretoria.

Danny welbeck is the striker Giroud needs in terms of cover and possible partnership or yall fancy the duo of Alexis and welbs?


I know this isn’t, by any means, something you could classify as statistically reliable, but both goals today for England are somewhat similar opportunities that Giroud missed in more than a couple of occasions last season. I’m not trying to bash the frenchman like everyone has already done, we owe him much indeed, but just pointing that this might prove as real competition, even if the qualities of both strikers vary in so many ways. This signing could only prove positive given the age of both contenders and everyone can see that Danny’s already committed to see his career go… Read more »


It’s the fact he was always in the box that did it, the strikers instinct which we need more of.


If Adebayor could score more than 30 goals per seaseon in an Arsenal shirt. Danny will score more. Though I did undermined his signing, he’s an Arsenal player now. I am supporting him to excel with all my stregnth. Welcome Danny! Welcome Welbeck!

Le Prof

Can’t wait to see Welbeck thrive getting proper service from our midfield. The other area I think he’ll really do well for us is those scrappy goals in the box. How many times in recent seasons have we seen perfect balls played across the face of goal with no one running on to them? Or good shots saved with no one following in? Hopefully not too many times more.


Oh what a fickle bunch!


FACT : Welbeck is faster than Giroud.. needs a few Kilos of Muscle though.. just a few kilos

Gooner Stoner

He got the physical of Henry and the spurs is still shite.


One of the best things about this transfer was about how he was reportedly all ready to sign for sp*rs and then we came in and he was like “thank the good lord who hast spared me” and that was that.

The Laycock Gooner

I was underwhelmed and the first couple of touches last night were a bit iffy but once he got in the game he pressured all the time, like we used to do every game.

Took the two goals very well. The second was a proper strikers goal. Keeper no chance.

More of the same as we wil have a new hero.


It’s 9 solid days and no words from Wenger on Welbeck capture,but I guess those two goals last night sums everything perfectly for the professor…. “when we find quality,we would go for it”


“He now holds himself strong and tall, whereas previously he could cut a languid, apologetic figure. He was too nice. He’s learnt how to bully and gained some welcome arrogance.” Hopefully Sanogo can learn a few things from this. Well written piece – I can honestly say that I’m excited to see Welbeck play his first game for us. His finishing for his 2nd last night was sublime; a touch of Thierry dare I say it?

Injured Gooner

Yeah hey…!! had a bit of Henry about him in that goal.

Just to clarify things, I’m in no way looking for the next Henry, I just want us to start scaring the supporters when they see the Arsenal on their fixture list and think themselves happy to walk away with a draw.

So much fucking pace and power!!!!!!!!!!


I just went back and watched his pass to Sterling again from a few angles and it’s clear to me that the pass was actually spot on but it was Sterling who stopped his run short at the last moment. Had he kept running (if they had been more comfortable playing together he may have) then it would have been an inch perfect pass. Can’t wait to see this lad line up against Man City. COYG

Tenzo (Theo's secret lover.)

It was the look on his face that gets me. The sheer joy on his face while running towards his teammates made me smile so much. The guns were a lovely touch. I even saved that celebration on my phone, made what was shaping up to be a wretched week just that much less bleak. Up the Arse.

Gooner from Pretoria.

Danny welbecks move to Arsenal is good for England..#Roy Hodgson…

Steve of Chiang Mai

At Arsenal may he blossom into “that guy” in the Die Hard 4.0 sense

Springbank 1965

Except for his hard work, effort, sheer pace, and all-round play no one should infer too much from Welbeck’s efforts last night …

However ask yourself this: would you rather he wasn’t England’s only scorer in a two-nil win or that he was.

Just perhaps he’s the antithesis to Sanogo’s goalscoring form we’ve been looking for.


I’ve read and re-read your comment and it still makes absolutely no sense.


I think it had a touch of the Pythion about it, aside from all that, what has Welbeck ever done for us?

the only sam is nelson

thanks to @beardedgenius for that, really good to see a fan who doesn’t follow the tedious “great when he plays for us, but now a cunt he’s gone” line and has sight of the abilities – and flaws – that DW will bring to the Arsenal

would be nice if that level perspective were something most people could find once in a while

anyhow, was anyone else watching the england game last night and looking at DW thinking “he’s exactly the kind of direct, strong, clinical finisher we need and Wenger *never* buys that kind of… oh, wait! hahahahahahaha”

Injured Gooner

Haha, sohh true… laughed myself off my chair on that U-turn!

Percy Dalton

Great piece @beardedgenius


I really enjoy reading measured insightful articles and comments from supporters of opposing clubs. Thanks for that.
My favourite line “…a rude change of pace…” really looking forward to seeing him play!


Thank you, mr BeardedGenius. It’s nice to get a little insight on Welbeck from someone who’s actually followed him closely over the years. I think most fans were already convinced Welbeck was a good signing before the match yesterday, but if there was any doubt left, it should be gone now. He’s the kind of striker we need, and it’s now down to Wenger to get the best out of his players. If we can’t score a lot of goals with our current squad, something is off, as it really is our best squad in years. Probably since The Invincibles… Read more »

fresh prince

Is Theo back in training? Has Wenger been taken by aliens or does he not know Welbeck has signed.

Geoff Shreeves: so what do you think Danny Welbeck will add?
Wenger: Danny?
Geoff: DAT guy welbz
Wenger: I don’t know, you tell me you link me with these guys I no interest we have a sanogo.

Naija Gunner

Was so happy he scored all the goals for England. Manshity will be pissing in their oily pants now, Welcome son.

Naija Gunner

@fresh prince lols!


That was an insightful and empathic piece. Many thanks for the contribution, it shows that football strikes bridges across the deepest trenches.


I was fairly happy when we signed him and after watching him last night even more so. Looks like a grand lad only backed up by thon Bearded bloke. Excellent write up by the way.

I reckon Giroud might be in a tough spot to get his slot back.


While I was thrilled about Welbeck’s performance, and loved his celebration, I could not help thinking about how bad England was defensively. Jones was shit, and Hart was forced to make some amazing saves. Chambers would have definitely improved the back line.

fresh prince

In other news, thought Jack was quite good in his new role. Needs to work for space a bit more but positionally aware and had a few bursts forward without falling over. Maybe something Arsene needs to look into.


had a good chuckle at the Di Maria/pakistani reference


I can’t wait to see Cambell-Welbeck-Sanchez attack

and then later we got Walcott back from injury


Except that won’t happen because Campbell is getting the Vela treatment.


Very impressed with the way Welbeck took his second goal. That kind of composed, clinical finishing is just what we need right now. And with both goals he showed that natural intelligence to find the right space to move into. This could be a great signing.


I agree it could be a great signing, but I down voted you because you’re Fatgooner.


And you’ve been down voted because you’re a knob


Am I really the only person that doesn’t understand all these ‘dat guy’ comments?


I’m with you on this one




I don’t know if I would describe someone who supports Man U as an *all round* good egg. Maybe a 170 degree egg, as supporting that team takes more than half of the roundedness of an egg away. Or maybe a good that still has a feather or a bit of poo on the shell, or one that you crack only to realise there’s still a bit of blood or gross foetus inside.

But apart from that, nice piece Bearded Genius!


Cheers bearded!


An informative insightful, fond and fair assessment from the bearded manu supporter, thank you. I have a good feeling about Danny, bring it on! COYG, oh to be ah Gooner…..

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