Monday, August 8, 2022

Wenger plays down Benzema stories

Arsene Wenger has played down the latest reports linking Arsenal with a move for Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema.

The Frenchman was on the front page of AS this morning, with the suggestion that the Gunners were tabling a move, but pressed at his post Chelsea press conference, Arsene Wenger was non-plussed (publicly at least).

Asked if his compatriot was a target, the Arsenal manager said, “No, nothing is happening. Honestly no. I don’t know who brings that up. Is it Spanish media or English media? I don’t know.”

Wenger started Theo Walcott up front against the Premier League champions and the 26 year old was involved in Oxlade-Chamberlain’s goal, but it remains to be seen what further plans he has in the transfer market.

The only arrival thus far is Petr Cech, and Wenger was keen to praise him after a solid display.

“He did well,” he said. “Maybe he had an influence on the Chelsea players as well because they felt that to score against him they had to score the perfect goal. When you have that sometimes you want to try too hard.

“It happened especially with Eden Hazard when he had that chance in the box.”

The chance that Hazard blasted over. Like some kind of wankered Lee Chapman. Long may it last.

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France won the 98WC with a striker a lot worse than Giroud…


guivarch and dugarry. both flopped in the premier league


Dugarry kept Brum up

Andy Mack

Does that mean he’s great or good or just “OK”?


I concur. You would get a lot of Bluenoses who would disagree with your assessment of Christoph DuGarry.

J Bird

Dugarry was good for Birmingham.

Coq au Vin

Dugary was pure class!


Agreed. France also had that guy on the bench, Henry something.

Bendtner's Ego

All hail Hazard, the second best player in the world!


Hazard is indeed a good player and the Ox is the closest thing to Hazard that we’ve got. I don’t usually rate goal, but this quip about the Ox is brilliant

“Cesar Azpilicueta made the mistake of showing the Englishman onto his ‘weaker’ left foot in the 24th minute, only to find out that he doesn’t have one”


Wilshere is the closest to hazard especially in dribbling if he is not injury-prone….


No need to compare one of our players to some Chel$cum, unless it’s something like ‘Sanchez is better than Hazard’. Just say The Ox is a very good player and leave it at that.


Have you forgotten Sanchez already!


Benzema is waiting for Ronaldo to become the Centre Forward,at Real Madrid, ( Rafa wants it) and once that’s sorted he’ll join Arsenal (I made all that up)

SERIOUSLY: Personally I want to believe that TH14 Is in special underground Arena teaching and tutoring Welé to play Winger/CentreForward for season 2015/16. I’d prefer that to Karim B.



If I had to say who I think is a more talented player over Benzema and Giroud, I’d say Benzema.

Who would serve us better this season? Giroud.

He knows the premier league now and he links well with the rest of the team. I don’t think Benzema can come in and do that this season. Nor does he offer us something different to Giroud. I think we need to be going for the title with what we’ve got now. If it doesn’t work out, look in January for next season.


Are you saying Benzema is the type of player as Giroud?


not the same.

He’s a bit quicker and more a proven finisher but he has some similar qualities. I think if Wenger wants someone to run at and past defences he’ll go with Walcott and someone to hold up and link the play then Giroud. The team would have to change quite a lot to get the best out of someone like Benzema I think so I’d rather not focus on transitioning too much at the beginning this year.


Lol. He is way more techniqually gifted and can create things by himself 🙂 He can actually get past defenders.


Its right. It takes a while for players to bed in. We might be fortunate with Benzema, if we secure him, as CFC were with Costa. He would be a great addition to the squad. Walcott doesnt phase these big defenses.


I actually disagree with you on Walcott and “not phasing” big defences. He hasn’t played CF much, but it’s clear that his speed makes them drop down much deeper, giving our technically gifted (this might be an understated) midfield more space to operate. And yes – I do concede he could more to be less anonymous, but it’s not like he’s gotten a prolonged (10-15 game spell) as a CF yet.

And on topic – Benzema would be a great upgrade, but I don’t see happening just yet.


We are good with the current squad. If we can get Benzeme, then it’d give us an extra push for the title. Other than that, this current squad is doable as long as they stay fit/healthy.


This current squad is doubleable, or even tripleable, I think you meant to say.



Me So Hornsey

Septupletable you mean.

It’s already trebleable.


Giroud is definitely doable.


I think we cam get enough out of Walcott and Giroud to do well without Benzema. But Benzema would be nice…


Exactly. Benzema would be a luxury rather than a necessity – nice to have, but we don’t really need him.


And dat guy Welbz


All you have to ask yourself regarding Benzema is “who will Real Madrid replace him with?”

Goone's Farm

Word is Real want to bring Reus in, so he takes Ronaldo’s old spot and he plays at ST. Wether Reus would leave Dortmund despite his contract extension remains to be seen. I’m not buying that rumor though, Benzema had a terrific season last year and was even less wanted to leave by RM fans than CR if I recall correctly.

Bould's Eyeliner

There’s at least 4 conditionals in the first two of those sentences alone. so yeah, bung.


Well RM fans were even more against Ozil leaving, but look how that turned out. And Reus signing an extension could simply mean Dortmund are looking to maximise profits when they sell him. Lastly, never understimate how bonkers the people running RM are. I wouldn’t be surprised if they did something like buy Griezmann just to weaken a rival.

Musa Abdullah

I think Benzema would be the most clinical forward behind Alexis were he to come so in theory his signing would present an upgrade in my book, however I must say I’m not all that keen on him as our forward addition because I don’t think he’s much better than what we have. I would advocate for (and hear me out) the signing of Marco Reus, like Walcott & Alexis he can play anywhere across the front 3 and those 3 respectively could enjoy opportunities in the middle between them. I really think Alexis can contribute a lot through the… Read more »


We should probably just get Messi folks. Really, think about it. He’d be a clear upgrade, unlike all these other folks.

It’s the only thing that makes sense!


Super talk!
I believe the strikers’ (Centre Forward) competition between the three (Giroud, Walcott and Welbeck) will bring the best out of them all if they all stay fit. Arsenal also have the luxury of Sanchez covering the position when required. Arsenal should concentrate more on getting a world class defensive midfield player.
It’s not worth spending £40+ million on Benzema; he’s no Diego Costa!
Any striker will score more goals with Real Madrid the way the team is set up.


Not a popular view here, I know, but I still think think the squad would really benefit from a couple of well targeted additions, a striker to complement Giroud & Welbeck being perhaps the most important., Whether that person is Benzema I am less certain. As we all know the realistic options are few.


I don’t think that’s an unpopular opinion. The (rightly) unpopular opinion is more like “Arsenal can never ever ever win the title until we buy mythical world class striker plus some guy to out-Coquelin Coquelin. #WengerOut”

Wenger himself has said that if he can find an upgrade in any position, he’ll do it, but as you say “realistic options are few.” What’s annoying is when people refuse to see that the squad is in even much better shape this year than it was last year.


This wouldn’t be the most flashy signing but if all else fails we could go after Charlie Austin to add depth at center forward. 16 goals in the Premier League is nothing to be laughed at.


ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha……..

bims lay

ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha……plus any other way to laugh out loud on line!…….charlie austin at asrenal?… that’s what i call a real comedy line!


You just like him because his name is Austin and you’re from Texas…


Really the title will be decided in the four games we play with Chels and Citeh…10 points from those and we’ll do it!! We have the squad….but who will be fit and ‘in form’ on the day?
Look at today….Costa out and they look ordinary. Aguero gets injured and City look shite. We have Alexis, Wilshere and Welbz out and looked really good!

Liam Bergkamp

Barca and Real scores hatfuls of goals against the rest of the fodder in La Liga, yet Benzema scored 22, when you consider that both Messi & Ronaldo scored over double that amount in a similar number of games, it hardly makes Benzema stand out as anything special, and the stage we’re at now, I feel Wenger will only sign players that are truly special, which isn’t something many would use to describe Benzema. It appears we have a fantastic harmony in our squad which is very hard to achieve. Look at city for proof of having too many prima… Read more »


I’d argue that Benzema could have scored a lot more except he has to play second fiddle to Ronaldo.

Hamburg Gooner

Not sure about that: at Barca everybody has to play second fiddle to Messi, but Suarez and Neymar are able to score lots of goals too


They don’t, though. Messi doesn’t have a trantrum if someone else scores a goal the way Ronaldo does.

Benz scored 22 and assisted 10. Those are excellent numbers for a CF. In another team without such a prima donna he woulda scored 30 and assisted 5.

Ronaldo's Paunch

You’re forgetting that Messi and Ronaldo take most of the freekicks closer to goal for their teams along with all the penalties


I’d agree with your assertion that team unity is a thing that is mighty hard to get, and so easy to piss away. I’ve a feeling that Wenger has always had this philosophy in mind though (i.e no wankers). Concerning strikers, I’d be quite happy if Wenger decided that there is no one out there who is available and we sit tight. But, given team spirit seems to be driving this team forward to hopefully another level, what would you do if C Ronaldo became available and said that he desperately wanted in at the Emirates? Would you take the… Read more »

Andy Mack

NO. We don’t want any player in our squad that looks unhappy when another player in the team scores a goal. He may be extremely talented but he’s far too selfish to fit into our squad successfully.


It’s obvious you don’t watch any La Liga, because if you did you wouldn’t of made that comment. Benzema is a top top player, Ozil didn’t vote him as the best striker he’s played with for nothing. When we bought in Ozil and Sanchez it didn’t have a detrimental effect on the squad. On the contrary, it enhanced the confidence and belief that they could achieve something. IF we manage to sign Benzema and it’s a big IF, we will have significantly upgraded this position and be very close to the top teams not just in the prem but in… Read more »


I don’t even begin to understand the debate about Benzema; it’s a deal which, if given the chance, Wenger will grab with both hands. He’s an elite striker and we all know that they’re not that many at the moment. We certainly don’t have his equal in Arsenal. People had the same debate about Cech, apparently we didn’t ‘need’ because we already had two ‘keepers near his equal. Seriously.


I read a stat the other day saying that Benzema is 3rd in la liga behind “those 2” in terms of direct contributions to goals/assists since he joined Real.

So he’s not doing too badly.


If you would have told me just one and a half seasons ago that we may or may not need reals main striker, let alone talk of the title, I mean its been a ride we’ve been on and to honestly not give a shit about this signing blows me away really, but I dont. In this day and age it all seems to be a dick measuring contest for who can buy the biggest name for the most bucks (see real/manu) but Giroud can keep on keeping on this season and Walcott plays like he needs a payday we… Read more »


The amount of people here that think Benzema wouldn’t greatly improve us is amazing to me! If you’ve ever watched the guy play, he has everything Giroud has plus he has a quick burst Giroud doesn’t have that is probably the difference in 10 goals per season. And it would give us options, it’s not like by signing Benzema we would be stabbing Giroud in the back. He can stay, have some great competition, and who knows maybe we need to play with 2 true strikers if we really need a goal!? I for one would be absolutely thrilled if… Read more »


And nobody hit me with the “team chemistry” argument. If Benzema can fit in without any problems in Real’s locker room, I’d place a large wager he won’t cause any issues in ours.

(Yes, I replied to my own comment.)


People shouldn’t talk about “team spirit” when they’re so happy we got Chel$ea legend Cech, and got rid of a proper Arsenal man Szczesny. What they really mean is “we like Giroud, but Szczesny not so much”. Using “team spirit” to be hypocritical.

ZA Gunner

Team spirit isn’t necessarily about “cheerleaders” in the dressing room. If that was the case, selling Pod was a disaster. It’s about players who put the team ahead of themselves. Who don’t sulk when they’re substituted. Who cheer on their team mates even if they don’t make the bench. Cech seems to be a consummate professional and I have no doubt he is an excellent team man.


Amazing isn’t it?
All I heard over the summer was “if we could combine Giroud and Theo, we would have a great striker; the centre forward strength and link up of Giroud, with the pace and movement of Theo/Welbeck”.

Yet these same people don’t think Benzema is good enough, even though he possess these same qualities.

Getso gunner

Is Benzema really going to guarantee us 20+ goals next season?


short answer…yes. long answer… yessssssssssssssssssssssssss.




off topic, as much as i was glad with the win yesterday, was quite worried of Wenger’s decision to push Cazorla to the left when he had an amazing season partnering Coquelin last season, it is reminiscent of us the coming into last season with a very settled 4-2-3-1 and starting with a 4-1-4-1 which ended up being scrapped as we were dropping points for the first 10 games, I know this comes in the expense of the ramseys and wilsheres but lets get the winning mentalitity in the league with a fixed formation before tinkering?


Think it comes down to having two engines with more pace in the middle to fight, control and prevent a top team to score rather than have our magician to lock a defence up. Since only Matic was to be found of their entire midfield i believe it was a success!

Stewart Robson's therapist

I would rather have Ramsey in central midfield than Cazorla. We all love Santi but that axis of Giroud-Ozil-Ramsey through the middle is the most lethal combination at Arsenal’s disposal, and that combination could be all the more potent with Coquelin now established in the team and relieving some of Ramsey’s defensive reponsibility. I believe that Lyon was just the tip of the iceberg for those three, especially since they will be flanked by Alexis Sanchez too once the season gets underway. If it were up to me, and I don’t say this lightly, Santi doesn’t get in the team… Read more »

Rectum Spectrum

Hazard clearly has a mental block when it come to playing against arsenal ;

bims lay

naah!…….me thinks it’s more of a mertescielny block?


Any chance we could convert the OX to a striker? On paper he has most of the skills (speed, finishing, strength, passing) to make it there, though he may lack hold up skills…


We certainly have numbers at striker (enough to send Akpom out on loan after he was said to be staying with Arsenal a few weeks ago by Wenger. However, all bring something a little bit different to the table that works against certain types of teams or bring attributes like Welbeck without the goals being scored. The big question is will the current striker options we have be enough to get goals in the big games against Chelsea, City, Man U and even Spurs, Liverpool, South Hampton etc.. where we have struggled the last few years. Most will agree we… Read more »


wat about Sanchez to be the gun…. we need a sharp gun like Sanchez…ox fill that wing of Sanchez carzola and Rambo box to box/ left wing


Rambo need to be played centrally always …that’s the only way to see his brilliance

Chris B

don’t get me wrong having another world class striker would be fantastic but I’m already feeling pretty optimistic with who we have already… Alexis, Giroud, Walcott and Ramsey are all totally capable of being prolific goal scorers. Ozil can assist like a mofo, not to mention Carzola, Wilshere and the Ox.
Again, hell yes to another striker but even as it is, fuck me our squad looks GOOD!


@Chris, mofo? Whats that?

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