Wednesday, August 10, 2022

Wenger on ‘big signings’, Rob Holding, and how many he’ll sign this summer

Arsene Wenger’s interviews with beIN Sports are usually much more interesting than the stuff he does anywhere else. He seems willing to go into the kind of detail he doesn’t with the English press.

Anyway, there are further comments about buying players this summer, price vs quality, Rob Holding, and how many signings he expects to make.

Here’s what he said:

So you confirm to day that Arsenal is a position to spend as much as any other club? That you can buy a £100m player?

We cannot spend as much as many other clubs because some clubs have external resources that allow them to be basically unlimited. That is not our case. But we can spend money because we have managed well the club.

Let’s not forget that the amount of money spent is not necessarily a guarantee of success.

But this summer we can expect some big signings at Arsenal.

Look, we have to be clear about what we understand as a big signing. Is Rob Holding a big signing for you or not?

A great signing because he turned into a very good player this season.

Yes, but that means a big signing is not necessarily linked with the amount of money spent. For example: a player you buy for £2m and a player you buy for £40m.

When you buy a player for £40M, everybody will have at the start a positive judgement. When you buy him for £2m, people say he cannot be good.

So the quality is most of the time linked with the amount of money, especially when the player is over 20, but sometimes it’s not necessarily always linked only with the money.

Forget the money, how many players would you like to bring in this summer?

I would say maximum three.

Wenger earlier spoke about the futures of Ozil and Sanchez, and interest in Leicester City winger Riyad Mahrez.

It’s definitely hotting up and the season has barely finished.

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Bendtner\'s ego

“Maximum of three.”

So, basically one and it’ll be in late August and we’ve probably never heard of him.

Here we go again…

Faisal Narrage

He’s always said he’s like no more than 3 players, due to something about squad stability or something. How true that is in reality, I do not know, but him ever saying three isn’t new ir surprising.

I think 3 is plenty for this squad. Chelsea made about that, with only Kante being the genuine purchase for the starting 11 and they turned back to champions.

Problem is, Conte is a bit of tactical genius.


But we won the cup 😉


To be fair though conte inherited a title winning side who simply had downed tools to get mourihno fired and thanks to no European football he got to play the same players week after week. He’s a good coach but let’s not forget he took over a very good team


to be fair , when wenger said three players is all we need he is absolutely right. 1-2 players is all we need really , but the problem is wenger have been saying this for years and is yet to actually buy that key players to properly complete the squad. we have been waiting for a proper striker for ages now . all wenger has ever bought is stop gap players like welbeck and perez . if we dont have a striker that doesnt score goals i cant see how we’re gonna challenge for anything. theres no doubt that arsenals… Read more »


Conte…tactical genius?

Bah…Wenger beat him twice this season…and convincingly.

Those red herrings…fishy.

Heavenly Chapecoense

Sanchez is not a proper striker for you ?


Why are you the way you are?


What do you mean by saying again? Cech, Ozil, Sanchez, Mustafi, Holding and Xhaka to name a few


We spent close to 100m last summer. Granit, Mustafi both at 35m mark. Beware of repeating trite from the media. The summer before is where we went missing with Wenger only buying Cech and we could have pushed on that season against Leicester. But I suspect Wenger looks long term at several summers down. If he should spend on a mediocre almost good enough striker say, there may be opportunity cost then as the old generation is phasing out and he knew there were players like Mbappe coming through. Maybe last summer he could have pushed for Draxler but it… Read more »


Don’t think anyone expected more than 3 signings. Besides I think 3 is a number assuming we’re keeping Ozil & Sanchez. A left winger for Gibbs, a quality CF for Perez & possibly someone to cover at RB incase the Ox leaves or Bellerin’s barca genes come to the fore.

Block 94

1. Striker
2. Central mid
3. Attacking player

The Loon Ranger

I’ve got a Green Day Moment coming on. Wake me up when September comes. ?



Gibbs is less than convincing and Monreal isn’t young.

We can play Ox as a right wing back inverted but we may not necessarily want to be enslaved to 3-4-3 either.


One mega signing, one 30 mill range and one bargain hunting


Enough talking bull shit. The line in the sand has been drawn now Arsene, so you have to deliver.


Taking about bulls***t….


Yeah – I must of missed the last 10 years of Arsene saying he was going to add ‘top top quality’ to the squad then signing absolultey nobody.



Cliff Bastin

Obviously they are Kolasinac, Mbappe and James Rodriguez.




Mahrez, Kolasinac and a Real Madrid/Barca cast-off possibly on the last day of the window (see Ozil/Sanchez).


Messi, Suarez Neymar, duh.


Yes, but it will not be the current Barca players. It will be their sons: Messi Jr., Suarez Jr. and Neymar III aka Junior Neymar Junior. Wegner is brilliant at developing young talent.

The future is bright!


Bale and Ronaldo

Little Mozart

Peter Crouch
Demba Ba
That lad out of One Direction

We’ll shit ’em.


Maximum three!!
Minimum Mr Wenger??

Mr. G

Three has to be the minimum if we’re clearing some deadwood.


Jenkinson, Debuchy, Joel Campbell, Sanogo, Akpom, Jon Toral will probably be moved on. Ospina replacement should be Szczesny. New signings to replace Lucas, Gibbs.

Personally I hope Wilshere stays. With Europa League we’ll need more bodies in CM & a player of his quality won’t come cheap.

Clive St Helmet

We already have a bloated squad. We definitely don’t need too many more signings.


Just top top top top quality


Call me naive, or a hopeless optimist, but I have high hopes for this summer and next season. I’ve followed arsenal for 20+ years but it feels like something has shifted this time.

Faisal Narrage

Normally I’d believe it but I stopped saying that after last summer.


yes something has shifted . we are out of the top four




For some reason i strongly want to believe the man has changed, and now wants to take it to another level before he leaves Arsenal. A massive squad overhaul must be in his mind, which leads me to believe he’ll sign some big names and get rid of the average ones we have. Three? Won’t put my money on that. He brought Alexis, Ospina, Chambers, Danny, and Debuchy when we thought he’s getting no one. A star striker, a dominant CM, a versatile winger, backup LB+RB are absolutely vital, and Szcz should be a welcome character after his Serie A… Read more »


Sell Ospina, Jenkinson, Debuchy, Gibbs, Wilshere, Walcott, Campbell, Chambers, Perez and probably Szczesny but I’d like to keep him.

Looks like we’ll sign Kolasniac.
And if we nabbed Mbappe+Rabiot on top of that I’d be happy.


I would keep Chambers to be honest. We should have 6 cb’s if we keep up with the 3-4-3 formation.
And I wouldn’t mind if the fringe players play a lot in europa league


As long as Kolasinac is arsenal bound all we need is a proven striker to win the league and Europa. Baring any potential departure of Alexis who Mahrez would perfectly replace we don’t need anymore players


Mahrez can’t replace Alexis, sorry buddy!


Mahrez plus a top striker might i guess, plus Ozil. That’s a very decent attack.

Tasmanian Jesus

Yep, Mahrez is no where close to Alexis.


It’s admirable in a way that he’s going to stick to his principles despite the extraordinary pressure. That answer about price not necessarily equaling quality is a warning not to expect “big money” signings imo.


Not true. I think Wenger is putting things into perspective. Holding has been phenomenal, an exceptional buy and at only £2m with 10-15 years ahead of him in his career. In the other hand, a player like David Luiz, sold by Chelsea for £50m and re-purchased for £30m Is Luiz £28m-£48m better than Holding? So price, as Wenger says does not equal quality. The more you spend, the greater the risk. I think we are genuinely in for Mbappe, and if we secure his services will cost in excess of £150m once we factor in fees and wages. Is he… Read more »


Ah, but that assumes he imorobes. There’s the rub.


Is this a new word? I’m not really down with the kids these days.

a different George

If he fails to imorobes, let’s hope he at least covfetes.


Haha! ? Should have read ‘improves’

Typing on a phone sucks.


The one i find particularly amusing is John Stones for 50m


Not many years ago people were happy we didn’t spend enormous fees like 30 or even 50 million. How much is mbappe worth in 8 years time?
We were proud of having 100 million in the bank, which now is worth about one world class player. I say spend on the squad! Better interest in a player who breaks through than the bank gives you. Just saying

Faisal Narrage

“So price, as Wenger says does not equal quality. The more you spend, the greater the risk.” I think it would be hard pressed to reject the case that there isn’t a positive correlation between cost and quality of player, which in many ways de-risks performance. I mean, more expensively doesn’t always mean better, but chances are the a more expensive player is more likely to perform to expectations. Sure there will always be examples of expensive flops, but for every Holding, there is a; Sanogo, Biscoff, and an assortment of cheap punts that didn’t turn out. Sure they were… Read more »


The problem with the big transfer fee is the greater the risk if the player does not live up to expectation. We stand to lose a lot more money when he should sell on for much less. Wenger has made his fair share of poor signings but in most parts, he has minimised damage because he spends so low. Where he has gone big – Ozil, Alexis, Mustafi, Granit, he has been spot on. If he should make a mistake on a big signing (like Radamel Falcao with United), it will cost us and affect future transfers too. We can’t… Read more »

Andy Mack

Sanogo and (I think) Biscoff were both Free.
The best price for a gamble…


But David Dein and the Director of football bought Holding for us.:D

I mean the media were wetting themselves about how we Stones at 47m was a great buy for City.

None of them even bat an eyelid with Wenger sneaking in Holding.

But many people prefer to listen to the punditry alas.


People should calculate the price of Real Madrid’s starting 11 that put 4 past Juventus tonight. They’d be surprised by how little it is.


lol, Gareth Bale alone was around 80 million GBP, and Ronaldo wasnt far behind ( a few years earlier ) . James Rodríguez was 80 million euros. Yes surprisingly little

Winterburn 87

Kolasinac,world class striker n another world class midfielder as a cover or replacement for Santi least.


If Ramsey gets injured or starts being shit again i think we may have a problem there. We certainly did last season and the season before. Would think this has to be a priority.

If Gibbs goes we will have no backup for Nacho. Nacho isn’t going to be around forever.

Mahrez would certainly be nice to have but as things stand think we need a striker more. A fast one who scores a lot of goals.

If somebody important goes surely we have to replace them in addition to the 3 new players.

Cliff Bastin

I think Elneny could potentially cover for either Ramsey or Xhaka’s roles. The new Edu?


Perhaps. Elneny and Xhaka seems ok to be fair. Not sure about Elneny and Ramsey.

It’s a bit hard to say with the new system. We were pretty screwed with the old one once Santi was injured.


Elneny is a mediocre player.

Not good enough. Short passes, nothing more, feeble at times defensively.

We need a better player who givesus a different dimension.

Elneny isn’t even as effective as Flamini when he was with us in instigating the team going forward.

A couple of half decent performances against poorer opposition and he is the next jenkinson.


Elneny and Ramsey are not a complete 1:1, but Elneny is much more like Ramsey than he his like Xhaka. He’s actually used to playing a more box to box like Ramsey both for Egypt where he attacks a lot and in his past club role.


I worry not only about cover for Nacho, but if Ox doesn’t want to stick around who is our cover / other option for Hector on the other side?? And if we also play 4 at the back, same problem. I’d really rather not see CB’s like Chambers, Holding, and Gabriel playing fullback regularly anymore.

Ainsley Maitland-Niles I suppose might be close to pushing up, but is he ready to be a regular in that role if necessary?




Wouldn’t say no to Barkley, think he’s a good player, still a bit rough around the edges, but on his day is very good.

Is he an improvement on what we have now though? And what’s his injury record like?

Godfrey Twatsloch

The eternal question is who is out the door and what we get for them. Debuchy really needs to go. I’m not one of the people bashing him and I think he’s a fine player but it didn’t work out and if not for anyone else but him it’s time he left. Joel Campbell. Another fine player and one I can’t understand why he was treated so step motherly but if he’s not being used then sell him. Ospina. Want’s to go and can be replaced by what is hopefully a more mature Szczesny. Perez. He deserves a club who… Read more »


I’d add Wilshere to that as well. I feel sorry for him that his career has turned out the way it has but we aren’t in a position to make decisions based on on emotion.

And if Ox stays and with his obvious desire to play in midfield we can afford to sell Jack.

Hank Scorpio

I’d say there’s room for 2 of Mert, Chambers & Gabriel. Wishere potentially?

Godfrey Twatsloch

BFG will never leave! BFG will play for us forever!


I think the BFG should stay, but be moved gradually into a coaching role at the end of next season, maybe with the academy.


It’s true we have too many step mothers


And shiny shits


We’re just terrible at moving players on. I agree we should shift all of those, but I bet we still carry most of them into next season.

And given our record on sales, i think yeah you’re being a bit optimistic on money

Hank Scorpio

Mahrez, a striker & backup right back with Debuchy & Jenkinson moved on. Whoever they are hopefully the exits don’t mean the usual short of a few quality players to challenge for the title we almost always seem to end up with.


We’ve got Chambers for WRB, not fast, but good technically. So Debuchy can leave.

Godfrey Twatsloch

I think Chambers has been good and even if he perhaps didn’t live up to expectation I think it’s time he got a proper run this coming season. A young versatile player who we paid quite a lot of money for.


To me Chambers is more suited to one of the back three roles. We need that speed and turn of pace upfield on the Wingbacks.


I’d be much happier with NET of 3. We certainly need to shift a good few out and upgrade them.
As much as I rate Rob Holding, and I really do think he’s an excellent signing & player, I’m concerned Wenger is going to use him as an example in every transfer conversation, while quite happily ignoring other similar style signings like Sanogo etc. The latter certainly heavily outweigh the former.

Lord of the Emirates

I love you Arsene

JJs Bender

Me too!


Comments re. Holding are bang on IMO but scouting needs to be top notch to do that on a regular basis. We’ll need right back cover/competition for Hector unless Ox is happy to stay and play that role…


Need to offload gibbs, theo, coquelin, giroud, mertesacker, perez, gabriel, already seven gone. Need to add another 7 top class.


Forgot to add jenkinson, debuchy. 9 deadwood


Thanks for posting twice. Gives me more pleasure to thumb you down twice.


Gibbs, Gabriel, Debuchy, Jenks, Sanogo, Elneny: Yes; Theo, Merts, Giroud, Perez, Theo, Coq: No! Why, injuries my friend. We need to still remain competitive when we get injury struck.


3 players? Does that include the new fullback?

Lord Bendtner

I expect Ozil to stay regardless. I expect Sanchez to leave if we do not sign a ‘world-class top top quality’ Striker. I don’t see Mahrez as an adequate replacement for Sanchez, I think if Sanchez leaves, we have to spend big for another player, not Mahrez. Kolasinac – done Expensive World Class striker – get this guy and sanchez stays (my view) Bargain Winger – maybe this depends on Chamberlain, if he is going to leave, we need to get someone who can play like him in a 3man defense. If Chamberlain stays, I don’t see why we can’t… Read more »


My disagreement with your view is:
Why it has to be an EXPENSIVE world class striker and a BARGAIN winger? Why not a world class striker and world class winger (whatever is meant by WORLD CLASS)?
Agree on everything else though. And Joel Campbell so fitted that winger role showing off his technical ability, defensive know how, clinical ability, dribbling, protecting the ball and his ability to find a man whether by through ball or cross. Oh how Giroud missed him.


Stop this madness about Campbell. He’s dime a dozen player. There is nothing special about him. No one is going to be knocking down Arsenals doors for his transfer. There isn’t going to be some bidding war for him. He does nothing on his loans.

Godfrey Twatsloch

Mahrez is hardly an on par replacement for Sanchez but what a fine addition to the club he’d be.

Someone with the powers to do so needs to stop Ox from slipping away. Losing him after how he’s performed this season would be madness.

Walcott scores, he’s shit, he scores, he’s good, he’s shit, he’s injured, he’s shit, he improves, he’s injured, he scores, he’s good, he’s shit…

No malice towards him but I also have no problem with him going.


If we are going to move on Walcott it really needs to be done in the next year or two as his game is almost entirely about speed. He’s getting close to 30 and at some point soon he’ll lose a step.

Godfrey Twatsloch

Aye on that!

Le Jim

Fuck it, I’d take three Rob Holdings. The boy is a gem.


Sell: Sanogo, Jenkinson, Ospina, Gibbs, Debuchy, Wilshere. I would personally keep one of Perez or Campbell for depth.
Buy or try to buy: Mbappe or Lacazette, Kolasinac and creative midfielder (Cazorla type).
Bring back Szczesny, Toral, Campbell.
And of course keep Sanchez, Ozil, Ox… if not.. God help us. COYG!


There is no Cazorla type, he is just too unique.


Yes it is, hi son 😀
Joke aside, I agree, it’s hard to find someone similar to Cazorla.


*his son




Isco, Verratti, Modric, Iniesta (very old though)


Renato sanches???


Off topic: Does anyone know why Wilshere seems to have lost his love for the club? I would be in favor of moving him on in any event but it seems weird that one of the lads who was most conspicuous in claiming to love the Arsenal over the years would seem to cut his ties to the club on social media.


The problem comes if Sanchez leaves. If that happens we’ve got to do a lot just to stand still.

I’ve read on here someone say that Mahrez could replace him. Not for me.

It’s essential we get the Sanchez decision tied up asap either way, because the rest of our transfer window depends on it. It’ll be a long summer if we have to sit on our hands waiting for him.


Yeah that’s my worry as well. With Wenger saying Alexis stays unless we can get a solid replacement this will drag on all summer. Alexis knows interest in him is solid and clubs will probably wait until the last minute to get him. And the clubs whose tip top players we’re bidding for want a bidding war so quick deals don’t suit them either. Juventus handled a similar situation quite well last summer when they bought Higuain for 90million euros from Napoli, and didn’t flog Pogba until that was done and dusted. Selling a player for a world record fee… Read more »

Godfrey Twatsloch

Also, who in the organisation needs to go? Forget Kroenke and Wenger. They are here for the foreseeable future and I’m not asking hypothetically. Who needs replacing to provide this club with a better organisation? One name that instantly flares up is Dick Law. If it’s true that he’s fluffed countless deals then by God send him packing! Gazidis? Is it true he and Wenger don’t see eye to eye? Is he shit at his job? I don’t know enough myself except that in a club allegedly lacking football people he is actually a football man. At least that’s one… Read more »


IN: Cavani (54 goals in 55 games this season), Mahrez (replace walcott), Mbappe if Alexis goes
Out: Giroud, Walcott

Central midfield
IN: one playmaker (don know who, Arda turan maybe) OR one DM
Out: Elneny, Coquelin

Wing backs
Out: Gibbs, Debuchy
IN: Kolasinac (done deal)

Centre backs
IN: Nobody
Out: Chambers (loan), Jenkinson,

Godfrey Twatsloch

Cavani is 31.

Bergkamp 3:16

30. Sorry to be a pedant.

Godfrey Twatsloch

Well that one year makes a massive difference. Let’s offer him the 100 mil on the spot.

Bergkamp 3:16

It does in that it’s not his age. Sorry, I am a pedant when it comes to footballer ages. 🙂


Where the hell is akpom these days.he is another that should be shown the door


Cavani misses way too many sitters.


this is some idiotic crap SMH


A big signing Arsene is a player that makes it straight to the starting eleven by IMPROVING the team. Rob Holding is definitely a great buy, and maybe a starter for the next 10 years, but he wasn’t buy to be in contention. If it wasn’t for Mertesacker injury, or Gabriel injury, etc. He won’t have play a part. Sanchez was a big signing. Holding is not, and I’m not lessening is qualities that are beyond obvious. He was a bargain.

Dixon\'s Awsome Own Goal

I fear a Ryo Miyaichi moment happening in August

Wright on the money

We need more than three we have already got one for free so with £100 million we could get more than three. Also if we are selling some players on.

We need more than three players otherwise we would have somebody better in the champions league and not so far behind the leaders in the league if we had a good enough squad for me we need 5 players and that is if we keep Ozil and Sanchez, don’t forget we are in the Europa league too so more games this season.


I feel we are as per usual one player short. Maximum 3 does that mean without any key departures (Ozil and Alexis stay?) Difficult to say. We could well do with Rback but no word on Kolasinac as yet so maybe GIbbs gets one more season. Central midfield seriously needs one more player. It was our achilles heel this season as we struggled to find the right mix without Santi. Wenger as I fear may delude himself that we have enough because it is presently working with new 3-4-3 but reliance on Santi will be a grave risk and one… Read more »


Lol, quality interview. Short and sweet and possibly ending with Arsene giving him the ‘poor illiterate child’ look.

Diego\'s a psycho...

Turan and Mahrez both look like real possibilities. Douglas Costa would be a great addition but there’s no mention of any bids. Beyond them bids for Mbappe or Van Dijk would be brilliant. I’d like Wenger to get rid of Walcott and Wilshere is definitely off. It’s looking less than likely that Sanchez, Ozil, and the Ox will all sign, but it’d be a great result if we can convince them

jack jack jack

“Forget the money, how many players would you like to bring in this summer?”

Is Arsene being interviewed by Vito Corleone now?


Open question, given that Bale has seemingly fallen out of favour a bit at Real. Would you take him at Arsenal?

Sure his injury record isn’t brilliant, but given the opportunity, would you bring him in to link up with Ramsey?


For example: a player you buy for £2m and a player you buy for £40m
Is this shade throwing from Wenger on Mustafi?


It would be pretty hilarious if he went and bought Bale.

Obadan Iziokhai

It’s not necessarily the number of big names Wenger signs that will improve the fortunes at Arsenal. What is fundamentally wrong is the weak mentality that has pervaded the club since 2008. Sir Alex was a serial winner at Manchester United without any big names although, like Wenger, he made some. Where have the successive managers after Sir Alex taken Manchester United in spite of the big names they signed. Answer is below Arsenal in the league table. The major problem with Arsenal is that the squad is not used to a champions mentality any more. Don’t forget that they… Read more »


Wenger is indeed a coach. He makes good signings although this season things never went well. I would suggest that he brings in Lukaku,Maherez and a strong number 6 and Arsenal will be done.

Samuel Ogungbayi

Rich and few other fans probably don’t know the performance of players in Arsenal before recommending their sales. Rich said Walcott and Lucas be sold ! Walcott had injury during the season and when he recovered was not given playing time like Lcus .Check the stats., Walcott scored 20 goals in all competitions last season , the second player to score highest after Sanchez! Lucas hast he highest goal per minute ratio in the League .Wenger froze him out even after scoring a Champios League hat trick. Joe Campbell had the highest work rate in Arsenal before he was sent… Read more »


It’s an interesting theory and there may be some truth in it, especially if these players were pressed on him by the board.

But given Wenger’s omnipotence at the club it’s a bit of stretch to suggest players were signed without his blessing. Also we simply don’t know the level of engagement had in the signings of Perez, Podolski etc… he may well have spoke to them on the phone, visited them, we just don’t know.

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