Friday, May 24, 2024

Arsenal confirm Vivianne Miedema departure

Arsenal have confirmed the departure of Dutch forward and club legend Vivianne Miedema at the end of her contract this summer.

Sporting Director Edu Gaspar said: “On behalf of everyone at the club, we thank Viv for her huge contribution towards the success of the team during her seven years with us. Viv’s goals and overall performances as an Arsenal player have been of the highest quality, and she has created so many wonderful memories for us over the years. We wish Viv and her family the best of health and happiness for the future.”

Director of Women’s Football Clare Wheatley said: “Since joining us in 2017, Viv has taken on a special place in the hearts of our supporters, who I’m sure will have many fond memories of her time at Arsenal. Viv leaves with our best wishes for the future after seven memorable years here.”

Miedema’s contract expires this summer and Manchester City are heavily linked with the player. Our understanding is that Arsenal are interested in Barcelona attacker Mariona Caldentey, whose Barcelona contract expires this summer too, as a replacement.

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Death by 300,000 Passes

Sad news, she is indeed a legend. Wasn’t there a possibility to extend? Wasn’t she interested, or the club wanted to move on?

Tim Stillman

I don’t know about what the player’s desire was but club wanted to move on, yes.

Fun Gunner

Oh, goodness. That’s a big call.

Peter Story Teller

Yes it is but if we want to win the WSL we have to be ruthless, I am afraid! A legend in her day agreed, but I am not sure she will ever be the same again after the ACL. I think the time out, the several restarts to playing, all the little niggles, and then to me most importantly is where her head is at as became clear in the documentary regarding the rehab. Contrast Viv with how Beth and Leah came back and possibly Laura and Teyah too but we haven’t seen enough of those two yet. They… Read more »

Fun Gunner

I’m all for being ruthless but some aspects of this don’t sit right with me. I understood that the club did want her to stay – nothing JE said in public hinted that they didn’t want her. Secondly, if we’re going to be ruthless, be ruthless with everyone. I feel like JE has favourites and Viv isn’t one of them. Plus Miedema is 27/28. This is her peak. I said on here the other day that her injuries are probably going to be a permanent or long-term feature, so I can’t really argue with that point! But according to the… Read more »

Chin

Spot on! Be ruthless to everyone, not ruthless only to those whom you are out of wits to coach (not fitting into style of play) or have their very own thinking on field. Game plan is dead, human is alive, if we keep talking about possessions and positions, this was why our players kept losing the balls easily (personal view, pls dont throw me the stats when we have only 1 trophy this season) Btw, JE has his unique identity. Keep passing sideways, passing backwards, and then no ruthless forward to charge into the defence zone. Dont know whether it… Read more »

Salvador Berzunza

maybe I don’t support Jonas, but the club is being fair with the player, the coach is not considering her in his plan, let her go. why keep her rotting on a bench watching her opportunities fade away. when Arteta said Aubameyang is not part of my plans, that’s it, thank you and good luck, lots of complains came but we move on as a club. I know Jonas is not Arteta, but he is the manager. Peter Story teller is correct and brave to say it.

Fun Gunner

Normally, I would agree – in fact I think we should have let Nobbs and Iwabuchi go long before we actually did – it wasn’t fair on them to keep them rotting on the bench. But this is one of the maybe half a dozen players in the world who is worth making a bit of an effort for in her prime years. Now, if after they talked, it was a mutual decision, I have to accept that. But we have to replace her with someone of the same calibre.

Henkamp

A really big one! Said weeks ago that the club needs to not be sentimental and mak some ballsy calls to get the women’s team winning the title next year, wasn’t expecting this one!

Toni

To be honest, she hasn’t been playing much lately. She must feel aggrieved. From top scorer to bench warmer? Sad to see her leave.

kazoo

Only the daft Eidevall would think that Russo is a better CF than Miedema–or Blackstinius, for that matter. They’re both better goal-scorers than Russo, who is a good player, to be sure, but not a great goal-scorer.

Ranbo

💔

Al m

Ludicrous mismanagement

WayBackWhen

We’ve got no information about the details.

Bill Hall

This is terrible news, at her best she is irreplaceable

WayBackWhen

I think that’s true, but Tim’s latest podcast helps to think about the wider context of team structure. This included (for instance) goals from multiple sources, particularly against a low-block.

I’m personally sad about Viv leaving but I wonder if we are reaching a new level of development within the WSL in that overall squad quality, tactics and systems are more important than having an over reliance on individuals.

It’s a live discussion in the men’s game with say Erling Haaland.
I’d love her to stay, we don’t know the reasons why she isn’t, but life moves on.

Danny

Don’t go to Citeh, Viv. Don’t do us like that.
Best wishes aside from that!

Shocked Gooner

Why would Arsenal replace Miedema with Caldentey? Caldentey is older than Miedema and her injury history is absolutely horrific. She’ll be joining (or replacing) Hurtig as out with injury for the entire season if we sign her. Please say this is a bad dream.

Henkamp

Add to the fact that Caldentey seems to be on the decline. She hasn’t particularly been at her best these past 2 seasons (when I have watched her).

Leemillion

There’s some decisions in recent years in the womens team that have absolutely bamboozled me.

Letting Jill Roord go was one.
Moving Viv away from striker was another considering the amount of goals.

She hasn’t quite been the same since the injury (or being moved deeper), so perhaps this is why we’ve let her go. Hopefully this isn’t another one to add to the list.

Crash Fistfight

Is there any truth in it being her decision to move to number 10?

Either way, it never made sense to me, and still doesn’t. Losing a world class centre forward to get a passable number 10 is bonkers, in my opinion.

Leemillion

I’m not sure, really. Sometimes I wonder how much say players have in that. The way she was banging goals in, imagine suggesting she should be a 10? You’d be branded mental.

I do also think she’s a quiet person and without trying to assume I know her/her personality, I do wonder if she didn’t like the spotlight.

David Hillier's luggage

She only became a centre forward out of necessity for the Dutch national team, and is on record saying she has never seen herself as an out and out striker. We all know she’s not a fan of the spotlight, but when you hear her in interviews (eg the ACL doc) and from what her teammates say, I get the impression she’s a very forthright person, so I wouldn’t count out the whole number 10 thing being her idea over the club’s.

100% agree about some of the recent decisions at the clubs though!

kazoo

She was the best and most clinical goal-scorer in the game for at least three/four years before Eidevall took over. She’s scored 95 goals in 118 appearances for the Dutch–and 79 in 105 appearances for Arsenal. Led the WSL in goals for, what, three seasons with Arsenal.

Tim Stillman

No that was Jonas’ decision

Crash Fistfight

Then that alone should get him the sack.

kazoo

The dumbest decision in the history of women’s soccer. She was the most clinical goal-scorer in the game–and prolific. A coach who thinks Russo is a better goal-scorer CF than Meidema is totally clueless. Check the numbers.

Fun Gunner

I have to apologise to you, Kazoo – I always thought moving to number 10 was Viv’s wish.

kazoo

Ha–thanks but no worries. It’s true that I’ve been fuming about it for, what, three years! Just a crazy decision: It would be like Wenger moving Henry to outside back or somesuch. It’s been a wasted 2/3 years for her, so definitely time to move on, though I don’t quite get signing with ManCity–a team with Bunny Shaw and plenty of other attacking talent already. ManU could certainly use her.

dontthinkshoot

As I understand it Jill Roord asked to leave.

Leemillion

I do wonder the reasoning for that, if that’s the case. A player of that quality asking to leave seems…strange.

Henkamp

It was after COVID — heard she wanted to be closer to home, which is now strange considering she wasn’t reluctant to come back to England!

Mike Lee

She left because of COVID. She found it hard to get home to see her family, so asked to leave to join a club with less travel restrictions. She came back to UK when things were back to normal.

Sam

WTF?!!!

Jonas is the one who should leave. She just needs a decent manager who will get the best out of her and give her the freedom she deserves on the pitch

Jonas out

Viv in

Xuan

It is honestly unacceptable if she joins city.

kazoo

I can’t see her joining City–a team that has more than another attacking talent already with Shaw at CF.

Carll

I’m not massively invested in the women’s team, but if you see Miedema play once, you fall in love. Incredible player, and my personal favourite. Sad to see her go.

dontthinkshoot

I thought this might happen. The club pushed the boat out 2 years ago to convince her to stay, only for her ACL injury to curtail her last 2 seasons. But let’s not forget the team under Jonas had already started to move in another direction, and continues to do so (whether you agree with those changes or not). Hence her very limited game time since she returned from injury. She is undoubtedly a class player but her injury record is suspect and her wages high. I don’t see her starting if she did stay, as much as I love… Read more »

Aussie Gooner

She is on par with Henry in men’s game maybe? Sad day for the club indeed.

Fun Gunner

I’m devastated. Especially if she does go to Man City. I know she isn’t Eidevall’s type, but I feel like she ought to be everybody’s type.

Death by 300,000 Passes

If she is not Eidevall’s type, I would say this is his problem, not her.

Clinton

Why selling her this is a sad news i think jonas should leave our club

WayBackWhen

Not trolling, or defending Jonas but I’m genuinely interested in reasons for this? In the plus column: Much better record against the immediate competition. Pretty good in game tactician (probably won at least two games against City due to this). Seems to have leverage within the club to push for better support staff around the women’s team (which in itself has led to the creation of a better squad). At the very least his presence doesn’t seem to be an impediment to quality young players joining (could be an incentive?) Two trophies in three years. Interested to understand objective reasons… Read more »

P.D.

The team have been a) quite poor & b) boring to watch, for large spells of this season.
To fall as far short of a title challenge as we have, with the squad he has at his disposal, has been …..underwhelming. (being kind to him)

WayBackWhen

Not challenging the fundamental of what you’re saying – but that’s a bit vague (without saying that the men’s team have won at least two titles and a few cups by being “boring to watch”) Anyway, I was guessing things like lack of chance conversion in the final third, or poor execution of set pieces, or failure to deal with low blocks were going to be the answer. I’m intrigued to understand if the #JonasOut thing has any actual substance. For instance, does he deserve credit for the home result against Chelsea, or away to City? FWIW I think the… Read more »

P.D.

Well, I didn’t just say boring, I said quite poor too. I really don’t know why you want more specifics, a team with that much quality playing badly for the majority of a season is an indictment of the coach surely.

Rashid

Wins against Chelsea and City mean nothing if you can’t even beat Liverpool at home or Spurs and West Ham away.
We were shocking against a massively under strength Chelsea away, btw.

WayBackWhen

Yeah, all true. I’m not particularly partisan about this. I think he has next season (from the club’s perspective anyway), to show a really strong challenge for the title and then it’ll be time for someone else.

John Beecham

Can’t sell a player who’s out of contract I’m afraid!

Alberto Balsam Mendez Rodriguez

Nooooooooooo! – Vader gif

kazoo

Thank goodnesss. She should have left 2 years ago. The most clinical and prolific goal scorer in the game and Eidevall didn’t think she could play CF for him! Comical. Clueless. Absurd. He favors CFs who are half as good. Let’s hope she now gets back to what she does best–scoring goals.

WayBackWhen

Let’s hope she now gets back to what she does best–scoring goals.” – Even if she joins City?

Chin

Yeah, why not? The club let her go first.

Jason

I’m not surprised but still gutted at this news, the fact that she could be playing for city as a striker next season will be a kick in the teeth tbh. What’s the ratio of where Viv wants a new challenge/Jonas has no place for her in his idea of a team that has lead to this decision? When you look at the stats in WSL last season – to be 3rd best of shots per match, 3rd best for goals scored and worst in the WSL for big chances missed then allow a player of Viv’s calibre to go… Read more »

Amor pelo futebol feminino

We don’t know if it was her desire to leave, or if it was from the club, or if it was because of the coach, we just wish her a lot of luck out there, I hope she stays in the WSL, and I hope this doesn’t get in the way of Beth if she wants to follow the The same path as her faithful companion, fans have to understand that she is happy and wants new challenges, new air, just like Kylian Mbappé

Karen

Heartbroken

Michael

On a personal level does this mean that Mead may follow her out of the door?
Sad to see her leave, the WSL and the world sat up and took notice of the superstar when she was breaking all the records on offer.

Amor pelo futebol feminino

I thought about it, but if Viv stays in the WSL she can continue, I don’t know…that’s what I think.

Crash Fistfight

Not wishing to be rude, but I don’t think the amount of inter-squad relationships can’t be good for squad cohesion, especially when they seem to move from one player in the squad to another. Would you be happy to work alongside your ex and their new partner?

I can’t stand her, but is there a correlation between how Emma Hayes doesn’t want players in her squad to have personal relationships and how well Chelsea do?

Chuck Felsea

“I can’t stand her, but is there a correlation between how Emma Hayes doesn’t want players in her squad to have personal relationships and how well Chelsea do?”

Not giving any kind of personal opinion on that matter with this very statement, but could it be that we have realized the same correlation and are acting on it?

Michael

I am not inclined to agree with your view but I mentioned Mead because she was the victim of the same treatment/consequence with DVD moving on.

Vonnie

Arsenal Women has become a strange entity with Eidevall in charge, there’s something almost insubstantial about the team, despite the talent in the squad, and I feel they seem to falter too often, looking feeble when they need to be strong. Kim Little and Viv are players that stand up and are counted, they’re fighters and get things done. If, indeed, it was Eidevalls idea to make Viv into a 10 then he should be sacked for that alone, maybe she’s fed up of being in a flaky, nearly team and will be better moving on. Nobody really knows what’s… Read more »

WayBackWhen

I’d suggest that the whole of last season disproves the theory of being insubstantial. Huge number of injures and loads of players were seen to “stand up”.

Would you not count Katie, Lotte, Leah, Lia, Victoria?

If your interest/support of the team relies on one player, the club doesn’t need you.

Chuck Felsea

“If your interest/support of the team relies on one player, the club doesn’t need you.” I would never say it in such a harsh way or do not tell others whom or what to support, but I do somehow agree. I am an Arsenal fan and as such, I support each and everybody that represents Arsenal in a competition. If they grab a bunch of hobos from the street, put an Arsenal shirt on them and have them play in a competitive game against a bunch of hobos from let’s say Sheffield, I’d support that Arsenal team, because for me… Read more »

MrNobody

Absolutely horrible decision. They couldn’t even offer her another year to see if she can stay fully fit and try to return to form. She has been incredible for us and that was the least we could do for her. If there was any player that deserved a bit of loyalty from the club, it’s her. Can’t believe this. Manuela Zinsberger gets a new contract despite not seeing the world alight with us but a legend like Viv is being moved on just MONTHS after getting back from a serious injury? I understand being ruthless but this is so stupid.… Read more »

Amor pelo futebol feminino

If the club really didn’t want to renew her, she’s only 27 years old, it’s a shame, it has to be something very strong for her not to stay, see Katoto, Alexia and other players that the club stayed with, they believed in the athlete and it worked.

Tim Stillman

The divergence between fans and clubs on contracts is that contracts are based on estimations of future performance rather than as loyalty for past performance.

MrNobody

Fair enough but it isn’t just loyalty for past performance. Even based on estimations of future performance, Viv can’t have lost all her abilities in under a year. It doesn’t happen that way. It is an incredibly confusing decision. Who on the market can you sign to replace a player like her? She’s also only 27 ffs. How do you lose that kind of player for free? Also, there’s a new video out showing Jonas pushing her and Viv screaming at him. I really do hope you bring that up in his next presser. Along with all the strong reactions… Read more »

Fun Gunner

True, but I think it’s a bit too soon after her injury return to decide that Miedema can’t give us anything. She has years ahead of her, too – it’s not like she’s a 33-year-old. Beth Mead has bounced back from her op without complications, and yet she has had ups and downs and is not yet back to her best. I mean for all I know it will turn out for the best, but I can’t really see it at the moment.

Fun Gunner

Just adding that it is that it seems as if they are saying that she doesn’t fit Eidevall’s style *and* she can’t adapt. That just doesn’t sound right to me. Miedema played no 9 for the Dutch team – a European championship and a WC final were the result. Our only serious challenge for the league under JE was during the time when Midema played CF, so she can’t be that detrimental. Under JE, Lia Walti has adapted her style to be more aggressive, more attacking and withstand physical pressure. Kim Little has adapted her game. Both are older than… Read more »

Dick Law's Kid's StepBro

Not a fan of this news. I’ve not been following the women’s side for long, but I’m highly skeptical of Eidevall’s approach to team-building and game management. This is an exceptionally bold move from a manager who has in three seasons only managed to win the second-most prestigious domestic cup twice. I think my biggest problem is the sheer fact that this is a seismic organizational decision: to part with probably the greatest player in the team’s history (that’s saying something!) and one of the top players in the world. And she’s only 27! She’s only 2 1/2 years older… Read more »

Justin

This is an excellent post. I don’t trust Eidevall’s decision making processes at all. Apart from Chelsea at home and the 2nd half of Leicester away we’ve been very average all season. I agree with Michael Cox (Athletic tactics analyst), Arsenal have the best squad in the league but we are comfortably the 3rd best team in the league.

Shocked Gooner

Is my impression that Arsenal seem to be primarily scouting/recruiting at other top clubs accurate? If so, is it concerning that when we do that, we’ll usually end up with past their prime players who the other top clubs are happy to lose?

Tim Stillman

Not necessarily. Codina is the only player in the current squad who really fits the description of coming from a top club and she’s 25. Ilestedt was not renewing with PSG. Can’t think of any other players who’ve come from that type of club.

Goonersince55

I just hope this was handled sensitively behind the scenes. Not being offered a new contract would have been hard to take. Letting someone go but respecting their dignity is one of the hardest things to do in management (not just in football). Done harshly and you’ll lose the respect of others in the organisation.

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