Iwobi: I always had that youngster tag at Arsenal

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Alex Iwobi says he’s hoping to make his mark on Everton’s history after securing a big-money move to Goodison Park. 

With 15 minutes left of transfer deadline day, news broke that the Toffees were willing to part with up to £40 million for the Nigeria international and Arsenal, eager to balance the budget after a summer of recruiting, decided to do a deal.

It came as a bit of a surprise but it looks as though all parties are happy with the way things have turned out.

Iwobi is eager to become an established star, Everton are splashing the cash and have a new stadium on the way and the Gunners have potentially pocketed a club-record fee for a departing player.

Now that the dust has settled on his move, the 23-year-old explained why he decided to take on the Everton challenge.

The offer was too attractive for me to turn down,” said Iwobi.

“The manager was telling me: ‘There is a spot for you, we will take care of you’. Basically, all the things you want to hear as a player.

“He has given me the confidence I will do well. I am ready for a new challenge and chapter in my life.

“I always had that youngster tag at Arsenal, so hopefully with this move I am able to make a name for myself in the Premier League and create history with Everton.

“Hopefully I will be able to take on a bit more responsibility and add something to the team as well.”

Having been a Gunners since he was at primary school, it’s sad to see Alex leave. We wish him the best in his new surroundings.

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Ex-Priest Tobin
Ex-Priest Tobin

I thought they would’ve learned better after Walcott. Outstanding fee for a mediocre talent.

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia
Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

Ex Priest, I recently watched great Arsenal goals in the past as I enjoy being stuck to the past of this great club. Walcott scored two great goals where he run, was tackled and pushed down, stood up, won the ball, even a couple of dribbles and bang, goal! Theo wasn’t a bad player. He needed a team that could play to his strength not a wengerball team. Drogba wouldn’t have been a success with Arsenal.
Same for Iwobi, he needed to learn how to score goals. Young Henry used to say how Ian Wright was his role model and how he studied the way Ian used to score goals. Was Iwobi interested in learning how Pires used to score goals? I am not sure. In fact, there was an interview of Iwobi with Okocha his oncle. The only point Iwobi was trying to make? I have to be myself.
Perhaps, he needed to be a bit of somebody else who scores goals.

Tungor_Adams
Tungor_Adams

When you +10years of total trust from your manager there is no excuse. The low transfer fee we got for a player in his best years and with us much experience as Walcott indicates the same. I really wanted him to blossom at Everton though. Drogba? I watched him at Marseille, never forget how he as a teenager kept the complete Valencia defence occupied in A uefa cup final, almost earning 10 man marseille the title. He would have been a complete monster at Arsenal, don’t see a single reason why he wouldn’t.

Christopher Wreh-Kamp
Christopher Wreh-Kamp

I agree…
He would have been phenominal at Arsenal.
If we’d have taken him instead of Chelse at that time I think we’d have had a little longer sustained success and we’d have seen a different attitude from the senior members that departed very quickly over time which would have helped the younger generation and the new recruits to gel and learn from the winners that we had at the time.
All subjective obviously and impossible to prove but just my thoughts.

Andy Mack
Andy Mack

Drogba was mid-20s at Marseille.
I saw Drogba play for Le Mans (around 2001 – he was early 20s)) and he was really really poor. Very physical but his first touch was so poor he gave the ball away all the time.

Tungor_Adams
Tungor_Adams

You are right, he was in his mid 20ies, but at Marseille he was anything but poor, he ticked all the boxes in terms of ability and desire to become great.

Public Elneny
Public Elneny

Walcott and Iwobi are nothing alike

Tungor_Adams
Tungor_Adams

Totally Agree in terms off their capabilities, but they fell short in away that feels similar. Neither oozed of the confidence required to make it, both lacked the game reading / decision making required at a team that wants to dominate their opponent. iwobi does however have that precious skill of beating his opponent even in tight areas, it’s the proceeding end product to that skill that he didn’t convince With. Lack of confidence? Or lack of game reading skill, not sure, but When I read “I was always seen as a youth…” and “hopefully my new manager will make me…” I am left with impression he doesn’t recognize his own responsibility in making things work out for him.

SarcasmB0t
SarcasmB0t

The main difference between them was that Iwobi always worked hard. His deficiencies came from his decision making – really only in the box.
Walcott was a guy who could run really fast finish and who thought that was enough.
If he ever tried half as much as Iwobi, he would have been world class. But not Theo. He would rather dodge a 50-50 challenge in a game we desperately needed to win to challenge for the title in the one season in over a decade.
I might have been unhappy with Iwobi’s finishing, but I never had any issues with Iwobi as part of the team.
Walcott never should have worn the Arsenal shirt again after the Sunderland game. He was a fucking disgrace.

Longfellow
Longfellow

Fatgooner is that you?

Badaab
Badaab

Love to compare two players at different stages of their careers who play in completely different positions and are different ages.

Alex
Alex

Wilshere bis… saying three weeks ago that despite the (then announced) arrival of Zaha, he’d fight for his place, suddenly, ouch, he leaves. Well, bye bye Alex, not missing you as a player, but you are a good guy.

Uhtred
Uhtred

That’s a bit harsh mate..hes a good player and hes one of us.. good luck to the lad

Notsince61
Notsince61

@Uhtred, it doesn’t sound like is Alex is one of us at all. Always liked Iwobi, can’t be easy breaking through at Arsenal

Keeping it Monreal
Keeping it Monreal

I’m pretty sure arsenal would have had a big say in him moving on. I somewhat doubt he was eager to leave

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia
Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

Coaches usually say: I cannot guarantee you game time anymore.
I hope in this case, they told him that they needed money.

SharpasFc
SharpasFc

I disagree. I was really angry and upset when I first heard Alex was going to be leaving but then I noticed his body language compared to say Jenko’s (pretty sure Jenko was wearing his Arsenal top under his Notts Forest one). Alex looks relieved.
There’s no doubt he’s a Gooner at heart but he has been treated poorly by certain sections of the fans and I don’t blame him for wanting a new challenge. Good Luck to him.

SharpasFc
SharpasFc

I disagree. I was really angry and upset when I first heard Alex was going to be leaving but then I noticed his body language compared to say Jenko’s (pretty sure Jenko was wearing his Arsenal top under his Notts Forest one). Alex looks relieved.
There’s no doubt he’s a Gooner at heart but he has been treated poorly by certain sections of the fans and I don’t blame him for wanting a new challenge. Good Luck to him.

My Cousin Vinai
My Cousin Vinai

See this right here? This is a perfect example as to why sometimes it doesn’t pay to be loyal as a player.
You stay with a club, fans abuse you and call you shit.
You leave the club, after club accepts £40M (someone needs to tell Alex that a good way to make a player not feel wanted is to accept an offer for them), you’re abused for being a coward for not fighting for your spot.

Can’t win either way.

Good luck Iwobi. Hope regular play-time in a central role finally unleashes your potential.

Mayor McCheese
Mayor McCheese

Well, to be fair, there aren’t many fans calling Iwobi “sh*t” and “coward”. Really in the minority. Some of us, though, feel Iwobi did not have the quality to match what we expect of Arsenal’s ambitions and performances. That’s not the same thing as “sh*t coward”. I hope Iwobi has a long and great career. I’m sure he’ll do well at Everton. But we need more consistent, more effective players at Arsenal. I’m sorry it didn’t work out at his boyhood club, but, at the top, few such players do. That’s the reality.

Titus
Titus

You obviously a keyboard ranter he grew as a player and pulled his weight all the best iwobi.

Der32
Der32

With Gnabry doing very well in Bayern, it would be interesting to see how Iwobi copes with the new environment. Wenger chose to play Iwobi a lot a few seasons ago while Gnabry was always at the periphery after his injury. Anyway goodluck to him at Everton and hope he’s able to fulfill his potential, except when he’s facing us of course.

Dave M
Dave M

Very well might just be overstating it a little. Gnabry is now 24, he is a rotational player at Bayern Munchen. He had a good year with them 42 games 13 goals 9 assists. But he’s not yet first choice and if he is going to make it this is a really his year. Will he? Maybe, but there are still many in Germany hoping to see more from him as he hasn’t fully taken off yet. His transfer was a funny one and clearly there were back room schenanigans from Bayern going on, but it seemed he really wanted to go back to Germany anyway. At the time I think Arsenal really wanted to keep him, but they lost the avenue to do so despite treating him well during his injury. I mean he is DEFINITELY worth a lot more than we sold him for, but he still has a lot to prove and lets just say I’d rather Pepe over Gnabry right now and considering Bayern were in for Pepe, maybe they did too!

Parlour's Paypacket
Parlour's Paypacket

42 games doesn’t make him sound like much of a rotational player…

Dave M
Dave M

49 games in total for Bayern, Gnabry started 30 and played 12 off the bench. Point is he isn’t quite there yet, but he has a massive chance this year without Robben/Ribery and no big name signing on the wing. I guess this is the year whether he makes it to the pinnacle or not. He’s not there yet is all I’m saying.

Dave M
Dave M
A Different George
A Different George

I think he is indeed first choice at Bayern now (with Robben retired), and close to that with Germany. But your most important point is right: he wanted to go back to Germany and that was well known. Realistically, that severely limited our bargaining power in selling him.

Dave M
Dave M

There is a lot on internal talk in germany and Bayern if Gnabry is good enough to be the long term successor to Robben/Ribery; is he a great player or a good player? A lot of people want a big-name signing on the wings. Like I said this is a HUGE year for him with those two retired.

Mintoes
Mintoes

Gnabry most definitely broke through last season for Bayern, was their player of the year and was given a 3 year contract extension in May making him their first choice in the team for this season and beyond. He also broke through into the German national team with some outstanding man of the match displays last few times Germany have played. He’s a future German captain no doubt.

Yet another one given away by us to flourish elsewhere…

https://www.google.com/amp/s/fcbayern.com/us/amp/news/2019/06/pots-serge-gnabry

Scwibble
Scwibble

How is he acting like he never got chances at Arsenal, you played 35 times last season, season before you played a lot and you failed to produce. All the best and all that but, why does he act like we never took him seriously, I haven’t seen Iwobi as a youngster for the last two seasons and I’m sure its same with everyone else.

Awkward footballer, good luck at Everton.

My Cousin Vinai
My Cousin Vinai

Man, people will read whatever they want to read.
Where did he say he didn’t get chances?

What he’s saying is he’s coming to Everton with expectancy and responsibility, whereas for the most part up until Guendouzi came, he was seen as a youngster in the squad, sometimes scene when he would misplace a place and Ozil would give him the glare.

He’s saying he’s relishing the opportunity and responsibility of being a senior and core player at Everton.

timothy
timothy

I think it’s a fair interpretation of the “viewed as a youngster” comment to suggest he either didn’t get chances or wasn’t taken seriously.

I agree he was awkward, lots of action with very little result and terrible, terrible defending.

Scwibble
Scwibble

Do you not read between the lines?

My Cousin Vinai
My Cousin Vinai

That’s the thing about the gaps between the line; they’re empty, and can be filled with one’s imagination.

Deep

Among our forwards, he was the most consistent one at tracking back.
Your ‘terrible, terrible defending’ opinion about Iwobi is like Neymar – falls at the lightest touch or even without.

goonshow
goonshow

Mate – not sure which Iwobi you were watching last season but his defending was pretty much non-existent! Check his OPta stats – just about the worst def stats in the EPL. He only seemed to come to life when we won the ball back and started moving forward, otherwise would trudge around, socks down and usually at least 5-10m from any opposition player. Despite being a big lad, he won very few 50/50s and zero aerial duels.
Granted, when he had the ball, he was tricky and powerful – but final pass would too often be misplaced.Nice lad but he had more than sufficient chance to prove himself, particularly last season – and he didn’t do the biz.

C.B.
C.B.

Hope he does well, great pedigree and still young.

Just not against us though please Alex.

SB Still
SB Still

It would be great if he nets the winner against ManU

YMARSE
YMARSE

And Liverpool

Dave M
Dave M

And $p*r$

Gutbukkit Deffrolla
Gutbukkit Deffrolla

Twice!!!

North London is Redder
North London is Redder

He can net the winner against spurs, city and Chelsea too please.

Vic Kasule

Mixed emotions. I want him to do well but not too well. Always seemed like a lovely chap though.

A P
A P

I thought Iwobi would be leaving when Blogs published this article on how Iwobi claimed the only reason he would leave Arsenal was due to lack of playing time.

Eduar-do a deer
Eduar-do a deer

*this*

Goontastic
Goontastic

Such insight. Fair play for spotting it bro.

Johnny 4 hats
Johnny 4 hats

Take a bow son.

Cultured determination
Cultured determination

Is he going to play in the wings for them or the no. 10 role?

Rich
Rich

I think Iwobi was a better player than he was given credit for, and would have much preferred to have sold Ozil or Mkhitaryan.

My worry with Iwobi was stamina, he used to fade in games.

But he’s at a good age, with a decent amount of experience, and I think he’ll surprise a few people at Everton.

Mekus
Mekus

Exactly. Lack of stamina was definitely an issue with him, but he was generally a very good player. Best wishes Iwobi and hope to see you doing better at our national team.

Badaab
Badaab

Probably wide, as Everton have plenty of players in the center of the park (though this assumes they use the same formation they employed last year).

Goonshow
Goonshow

He was ‘in the wings’ at Arsenal mate – that’s why he left!

Newxieland
Newxieland

All the best mate! $40m for a squad player is excellent business! Hope we’ve also slapped on a 15% sell on clause teehehe…

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia
Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

He was almost playing every Arsenal game. Was part of starting XI.

Dave M
Dave M

You’re right: 51 games, 6 goals and 9 assists. He was a first team player last year, but we also need to improve on last season and those numbers don’t really stack up that well. Good luck to him and he would have been a good squad player this year, but I think we successfully move to improve his position with Pepe, potential of Martinelli, and growth of young guys in Sahka and Nelson. We all would have preferred it be Mihki I’m sure, but there were no takers and with the wages and signings someone had to go. End of the day it’s a dam good bit of cash for a guy that was looking like more of a rotation piece this season.

Boywonder
Boywonder

It actually isn’t £40 mill , it’s £27.5 mill with add ons that can see it rise to £34 mill

Wengerballz
Wengerballz

Is that so? Would have rather kept him for that price

Pepe Le Pew
Pepe Le Pew

Amazing talent, amazing athlete. Sad to se him leave but Nelson will cover his position. COYG

Bishop
Bishop

I get this wrenching feeling in my stomach each time I see a comment where Iwobi is criticized or written off by some gunners.

He is very talented and I am sure he will cut it in the Premier League. I have a number of friends who support rival clubs and they have always had high praise for Iwobi.

I understand the rationale behind selling him off to Everton but he is one of us and let’s wish him well and stop slagging him off.

loose_cannon
loose_cannon

That’s something I’ve noticed as well. I can think of a couple of occasions last season where fans of a rival team told me that Iwobi was our best player on the day, even though we ended up losing the game. He gave us something different and direct, and always tried to make an impact. Hopefully Pepe and Nelson will be able to do the same this season (but with much more end product!).

John C
John C

But that’s the problem with him isn’t it, he got so much of the ball his numbers should have been off the charts and they weren’t. It’s almost as if the opposition were more than happy for him to have the ball at the expense of others who where more dangerous.

Jarghs
Jarghs

Sobering to realise this is the largest transfer fee we’ve received

Martin
Martin

It just proves we are not a selling club

Hantal
Hantal

No, it proves we’re crap at squad management and selling in general

jiggernaught
jiggernaught

we sold Ox for 35m so that is incorrect.

A Different George
A Different George

Come on–transfer fees have soared in the past few years (far, far, more than just general inflation). It’s meaningless to compare recent fees to old ones on a pound-for-pound basis. It’s much more useful to compare a particular fee to what other players in a position were getting then.

Dave Cee
Dave Cee

Exactly..how the fuck did we not take the 60M from city for Sanchez??????

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia
Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

Raises the question: At what price did we sell Fabregas ?

Thierry Bergkamp
Thierry Bergkamp

I always thought it was too little, even back then when Mcguires or Lukakus weren’t going for 80 million. Didn’t he go for 35m

allezkev
allezkev

Won’t Alex Oxlade-Chamberlains move to Liverpool eventually total £40m?

Good luck to Alex all the same.

TeeCee
TeeCee

So little that the chairman of Barcelona went on record saying they’d got a bargain.

Goonereality
Goonereality

But we could have received bigger fees than this had we not allowed the contracts of both RVP and Sanchez run down. We had to let the first go for peanuts and the second go in a daft exchange deal for Mkhitaryan, a player than we didn’t really want, rather than see him leave on a free! Bad management by the previous administration.

Arsenala Vista Baby
Arsenala Vista Baby

Arsenal just cannot say no to £40m in current situation. Especially after the purchase of Pepe. It has been a while since Arsenal manage to reap the benefit of investing in youngsters. Iwobi is a good, committed Arsenal man. The arrival of Pepe must play important part in his decision. It is sad that it needs to come to this. But Iwobi deserve to play regularly in any team if not Arsenal, I wish him all the best, thanks for the memories and glad that it is Everton that you choose, not a direct rival. Hopefully he will grow and some Barca or RealM team will buy him and we get some commission for that.

Once Arsenal, always Arsenal (except for some)

goonero
goonero

He just never really asserted himself as a “senior” player, in his behaviour or his performances. That interview he gave saying how satisfied he was with his goal haul last season because “he’s not really a forward anyway” showed that he just didn’t have the killer mentality you need to compete at the very top of the top.

Maybe the burden of responsibility he is sure to have at Everton will be a good thing for him. He’ll have to step up and be a leader in that side, maybe some of Richarlisons fuck you attitude will rub off on him and motivate him to really kick on.

Goonshow
Goonshow

Totally agree – he seemed to be satisfied with coasting – 6 words that make a lie of his ‘not really a forward’ comment:
Marc overmars
Robert Pires
Freddie Ljunberg

None of them fellas were ‘really forwards’ either Alex…

Dan nichols
Dan nichols

i think the late wenger era was understanding and nurturing but forgot that the central reason an employer should be these things was to improve performances on the pitch. I think that allowed a guy who had 35 chances not to look a young player but never quite managed it to comfort himself with this erroneous theory. He could have become our main behind the attack player with walcott, ox moved on, ozil and ramsey having disrupted seasons and mcki being, well, a bit shit. He couldnt nail it down and we have replaced him. i want willock, nelson, smith rowe and nketiah to learn from this, from ox, gibbs and theo and to learn that to not be treated like young players they have to mature quickly take their chance wherever given and make it work. You get maybe year and a half around the first team as promising I’d say (maybe longer at centre half or goalie) and then you need to be delivering!
AMN is at that time now where he wants to give emery a real headache when bellerin comes back! To put in five more performances like last weeks so we can say this is a proper player and trust him and make yourself change plans to accomodate him. or we’ll sell you and get someone else who can provide that competition ! Personally i think AMN might be up for this test in a way Iwobi wasnt. i think that light is in willocks eyes too. not sure on the others yet despite seemingly greater talent.

Dave Cee
Dave Cee

This, this, this! Perfectly put Dan. There far too much comfort around the Arsenal squad in the latter Wenger days. Players were given chance after chance, he even said he wanted Walcott to stay whilst hardly ever playing him. I hope Raul and Unai have brought back that keen sense of competitiveness that has been missing. For the young players the message must be “push on or push off”. I really hope they have the mentality and ability to make it with us.
Anyway, good luck Alex

loose_cannon
loose_cannon

Was sad to see him go but if he gets regular game time in his best position (wherever that is), it will have worked out got all parties. We get a substantial fee and space for Willock and Nelson, Everton get a player with bags of potential, and hopefully Alex gets his shot. Wish him the best.

Goonereality
Goonereality

I imagine that was financial pressure to go someway to balancing the books and his was the best option for a quick, big, fee in the Summer (UK) window. We’ve bought a lot of players and we needed incoming cash. It’s the best deal all round I think.

Goonereality
Goonereality

* there was

loose_cannon
loose_cannon

I get that but it was so sudden that I don’t think we planned it. I don’t think it was something we were really considering at all until Everton got bounced by Palace for Zaha and came to us. The offer was then too good to turn down for player and club.

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia
Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

Even without good statistics, The Jeff is seen in France as a great talent. He was even said to have been a greater talent than Pépé at Angers. Why did Unai sell without even knowing him?

Aaron
Aaron

Who is seeing him that way in France and who’s been saying that in Angers?
Speculation would never die.

Pepe is the finished article, Jeff is someone with potential and they are different players altogether.
Arsenal said that Jeff was indeed the special talent (real deal) just days before those Emirates cup games but he was injured most of the time and it’s time we moved on as well.
If he turns out good, then good luck to him.

We are a club who penny-pinched trying to sign Cristiano Ronaldo – that’s a worthwhile regret but not for Jeff, please.

WengersNoseHair
WengersNoseHair

Makes my blood boil when I think we lost Iwobi, and probably Ramsey too, because of the fat contracts handed to Ozil and Mkhitaryan. I much rather we had kept the former two. Maybe the club has learnt, next time someone demands superstar wages, unless they’re Messi, show them the door, even if it means short-term pain.

Goonereality
Goonereality

It’s worse than that. We let Sanchez go in the exchange deal that brought Mkhitaryan to The Emirates (a player that we didn’t really want) only to prevent Sanchez going on a free. Had we not allowed Sanchez’s contract to run down earlier on we could have got at least £60 million for him (at the time) or kept him and he was good for us (albeit not for Utd).

The fiasco over Sanchez then panicked the previous management team into giving Ozil his wage-structure busting contract to ensure he didn’t on leave on a free as that would have been too embarrassing.

You couldn’t have planned it to be any worse. All Gooners should hope that there will never be a repeat of this mess.

Ealing
Ealing

100 times up.

Caligunner
Caligunner

Lol we lost iwobi because our rich owner doesn’t want to spend any money he doesn’t need to so the club needs to balance the books.

We lost Ramsey according to articles because our manager didn’t think he was worth it.

I agree though we should have handled the business better long before the contracts went into the last season.

Boywonder
Boywonder

Blogs why aren’t you reporting it’s £40 mill , the transfer fee is £27.5 mill with add ons that can rise to £34 mill

Boywonder
Boywonder

*are you

Goonereality
Goonereality

Yes, the lower total is the breakdown that the BBC were reporting a few days ago. We won’t know for sure until/unless either club confirms it officially, which I haven’t seen to date. Either way, it’s still a pretty good deal I think.

Goonereality
Goonereality

On the face of it, we got a pretty good deal here. That said, I’m sure that we all wish him luck with the Toffees – but not when he play against us, of course.

Rasman
Rasman

Was a good deal for a player yet to actually produce much on the field. people are forgetting that he is 23, not 17. Where he is with decision making and shooting is way below where a $40mil winger/midfielder should be. Still talking about potential is a bit of a worry about a player that has been around some very good players for years and they expect him to learn at a ‘lesser’ team?

Tungor_Adams
Tungor_Adams

While I Would smile if he gets his decisioning fixed and gears up at Everton, this was a very logical and fairly positive transfer for us, great if it works out to be a step forward for Iwobi as well. But he Didnt really capitilize on his pitch time last year, While I respect him as a long time gooner, we needed to look for a different solution, while it remains to see if we will be better off I am very pleased and full of praise to the squad decisions made

Badaab
Badaab

Best of luck to Iwobi- I always liked him as a player and as a personality in the squad. Feels like he was never given a sustained role in his natural position as we weren’t using a formation that allowed it (a diamond shape in the midfield would have gotten more from him, I think), but because of his youth and desire to play, he was shunted off to the wing to fill a gap in our squad.
What he says about the ‘youngster’ tag is largely true, as even retired players still have that tag attached to their careers when they’re one team players (have a look at the ‘Class of 1992’).
Hope he scores loads, but not enough to help Everton beat us in matches, or in league standings.

Kaleja
Kaleja

He was a very decent squad option considering the current crop of players, but what you gonna do, it’s a move that had to be made given we currently don’t have that many sellable players.

Naija Gunner
Naija Gunner

Good luck on your new adventure son

Santori
Santori

Good money for him but for me a mistake to let him go so soon.

Nelson will rightly have a go on the left and will now step up as one of the first choices but I would have kept Iwobi at least one more season (with Pepe yet to bed in) and fro strength in depth technically.

He would have also balanced out Pepe.

Sure Auba can also play left but one injury to either striker and our options dwindle very quickly.

Martinelli also looks useful out wide but he’s s till very young and consistency will be an issue.

All the best attacks unsurprisingly enamated from our left side with Iwobi and Kolasinac last season.

This season we could have balanced that out with Pepe and Bellerin (or AMN) on right side better spreading the threat.

And at 23yrs, he is just finding consistency and experience where to hold and when to pull wide for us.

One step back for me but its done and dusted and we have to hope Nelson really rises to occasion. He looks a player to me so fingers crossed.

Goonshow
Goonshow

34 mil negates any argument of a ‘step back’ Santa. And the fact is he never learned that defence is a vital part of the modern game – Martinelli’s already put in in more tackles in pre-season that Alex the whole of last season!
Nice lad – but never really showed the willing and the hunger – we got a great deal for him at that price.

Santori
Santori

https://www.bbc.com/sport/football/49319480

Obviously there are other soft factors but interesting to see Iwobi is valued much higher.

Pepe is a good buy bc we signal intent and it sends a signal that may help us in retention (Laca, Auba). Otherwise his price is hot and it does not follow that a high price means he is any necssarily that much better than say cheaper options like Fekir or Ziyech (albeit whether those clubs were willing to structure installments comes into question)

Tierney I think is a decent price for a good player but one we may not have needed so early and frankly in which we should have used the money earlier in pursuit of better options at Cback.

Cebellos jury still out. I’m not sure he is Santi Carzola number 2. He needs to find his feet first before judgements can be made but in any case a temporary solution which we’ve kicked down the road.

Saliba is over priced and a risk. Inecessary had we landed Upamecano or koyate instead. The 27m on Saliba of course again installment but compounded with Pepe, we also accry more risk of impacting future summers with back loading.

Had we NOT signed Saliba, I would think it would have been an easier decision for the club to commit the bulk of the transfer kitty ++ on a proper solution at Cback. As is we have a risky Sideshow even if at 8m potentially another Lichsteiner or Squillaci.

Hopefully his experience bears out but we’ve said that about other band aids and tried to justify them.

Overall a bold summer and decent enough signings but for risk on Saliba and not optimum solution at Cback (again). I won’t say we have been fantastic.

BUT Raul certainly less encumbered by having to accommodate Mslintat and with a pliant Edu in tow, he’s almost met what Unai needs which is an improvement.

Andy Mack
Andy Mack

We’ve seen Iwobi have outstanding games and also have almost completely anonymous games. If Alex gains consistency (in a good way) then we’ll regret letting him go, but if he doesn’t become more consistent then we got a good deal from the Toffees.