Sunday, July 14, 2024

Transfer Tittle-Tattle: Merino, Gyokeres, Williams, Bakayoko, Eze & more

Season of deals and fervent negotiations,
Close bosom-friend of the summer’s signings;
Conspiring with agents how to load and bless
The squad with talent, fit for title quests

Did we get bored and ask Chat GPT to write a poem about Arsenal transfer rumours in the style of John Keats. No comment. Is the poem being used as a distraction from the fact we don’t really believe any of the below? Also no comment.



Mikel Merino

Source: Mundo Deportivo / Sport

Catalan publication Mundo Deportivo claimed on Sunday that Arsenal are a danger to Barcelona’s interest in Real Sociedad midfielder Mikel Merino. Apparently the Spain international, 28, is open to a new chapter in his career and Arteta wants to sign him ‘no matter what’. They claim a €25 million fee would do it. The sheer hyperbole in the original article makes us think this is probably bollocks while the silence from the big transfer gurus – Ornstein, Romano et al – is deafening.

Poo-o-meter: 💩💩💩💩💩💩💩


Victor Gyokeres

Source: Leonino

Leonino, a Sporting Lisbon dedicated outlet, reported five days ago that Arsenal are set to sign Victor Gyokeres for a fee north of €90 million. Five days later, they remain the only ones who believe the story. While the Gunners have been linked with the Sweden international before, we’re struggling to believe a deal of such magnitude isn’t being covered by anyone else. We’ll file this one in the bin.

Poo-o-meter: 💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩


Nico Williams

Source: Various

The Athletic Bilbao winger has lit up Euro 2024 which makes him easy fodder for the rumour mill, especially when a big name like Arsenal is said to be keen on a new wideman. While Mikel Arteta may well have had his head turned by his compatriot, The Athletic point out the player has professed his loyalty to his current club with whom he recently signed a new deal. They also point out his £49 million release clause would have to be paid in one-go.

Poo-o-meter: 💩💩💩💩💩💩


Johan Bakayoko

Source: Rik Elfrink

Dutch journalist Rik Elfrink claims Arsenal have inquired after Bakayoko, a player Arsenal fans will be familiar with following his performances for PSV Eindhoven in last season’s Champions League. He rightly points out the 21-year-old would have Bukayo Saka to contend with on the right flank and that a move to the Emirates might not be the best step for his development. All the same, it’s a position Arsenal could look to strengthen in light of the news Reiss Nelson is open to departing.

Poo-o-meter: 💩💩💩💩💩💩💩


Eberechi Eze

Source: @TeamNewsAndTix

For clubs disappointed to lose out on Michael Olise, who is set to join Bayern Munich this week, the tasty consolation prize is England international Eze. The 25-year-old midfielder has a release clause (rumoured to be around £60 million) which should make life easier for suitors and Arsenal have the advantage of owning a number of players the Eagles might be interested in (Nketiah, Nelson, Smith Rowe etc.) if we want to do a different type of deal. It’s also worth remembering Eze was on the Gunners’ books as a kid before being released in 2011.

Poo-o-meter: 💩💩💩💩


Nuno Tavares

Source: Noticias ao Minuto

Having spent two seasons away from Arsenal it’s easy to forget that Nuno is still a Gunner. We imagine that won’t be the case for too much longer although the left-back isn’t giving anything away at this point. Speaking on Portuguese TV, he said: “My priority is to return to Arsenal. After that, only the future will tell. Everyone knows that I have another year left on my Arsenal contract. I have people I trust looking after my future. There have been a few approaches, but I always leave it to whoever is in charge of my future.”

Poo-o-meter: Not really applicable 🤷🏻‍♂️


Emile Smith Rowe

Source: Various

Like Reiss Nelson and Eddie Nketiah, whose futures at the club are also in doubt, Emile is currently in Marbella on a not-optional pre-pre-season training camp with Mikel Arteta. Having made four starts in two seasons across all competitions for Arsenal, it’s clear we need to make a decision about whether to stick or twist on Emile. Rumours of a £40 million asking price won’t make life easy if we try to sell him, but Fulham, Palace and West Ham are said to be sniffing around.

Poo-o-meter: We think Emile will leave (😔) so we’ll go low. 💩💩💩💩

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Would love ESR to stay! Lots of incoming poos above, hopefully something good is happening behind closed doors…


Don’t we get problems in regards to homegrown players if we let Eddie, Reiss, Emile and Aaron go this summer?


But we need not just homegrown in England, but also homegrown at Arsenal. In the PL the allowance is 17 non-homegrown players, but in the CL you need 4 who were trained at the club. Currently Hein (to leave on loan), Smith-Rowe (who knows), Martinelli, Saka, Nelson (to leave), Nketiah (who knows) are club trained players. Ramsdale (to leave), Rice, Zinchenko, White are trained in England. If some of these guys leave we’ll be short. Nwaneri will count as homegrown but he’s U21 anyways so doesn’t need to be registered.


You forgot Raya and Saliba.


Saliba spent two seasons on loan, those years don’t count (at least not on Football Manager :)). Well noted on Raya though!


Not sure on Football Manager but Saliba definitely counts as homegrown in real life. He was registered as such in the Premier League and Champions League just last season!


It’s also not true that you need 8 homegrown players (which in Uefa comps splits it into 4 club grown and 4 country). Instead what the rule is that you can only have a maximum of 17 non homegrown players. So for example a club if they wanted could have a squad of only 17 players, all non homegrown. I wouldn’t be surprised if we end up with 17 non homegrown players and about 5 or 6 homegrown players and the u21s like Nwaneri, but that’s it. Deliberately having a slightly smaller squad. But let’s see.


I don’t think we’ll let all of those players go. Maybe two of them, but I really don’t think Arsenal have any intention of selling these players much below their asking price — that means buying clubs have to have pretty clear plans for the player in question. I think Reiss is the most likely to go as he’d likely come the cheapest, and he can play both wings and has some real talent if given the run. All of these players want to play, but considering the incredible culture and family feeling at Arsenal FC, not to mention the… Read more »


I for one am partial to the idea of us buying another Basque midfielder named Mikel… then again when you put it like that it seems like exactly what that outlet was hoping for, saps like me thinking “oh another basque midfielders named Mikel? That makes sense!” Especially being Catalan twats I’m sure they like to stir the pot a bit

Must say I do fancy the other Basque player mentioned, Nico Williams. A winger who’s big enough to deputise as a backup striker, why not…? 49mil seems totally fair for a lad of his age, talent level and experience.


*that sounded bad, wasn’t at all saying all catalans are twats, far from it, but specifically that lot I seem to remember having a lot to say about Cesc’s “Barca DNA” before we were forced into selling him. Still hurts like a fuet sausage in the arse.


Esr would have gone for 50m two seasons ago.

And we outright rejected a first bid of 35m from Villa then.

Why can’t we hold onto him and send him on loan to Leicester with Maresca (pep disciple) or McKenna at Ipswich who loves a formation with double AMC

The Beast

In that same season we got Ødegaard for £35m. I love ESR, but I don’t think there’s any way we could’ve got anyone to buy him for that much back then when there were other more established, less injury prone players available for less

Gervinho is Driving

I’d keep Nuno Tavares so that when we go about 3-0 up on suckers we can bring him on to charge around like a crazy person and take the piss.

Cannon and ball and arsen’all

I’d be looking at Rayan Cherki from Lyon. One of the best young players in France. 20 Years old and already 140 appearances with 17 goals and 25 assists – can play on either wing, attacking mid or even false 9. Entering last year of contract and not signing a new one


Eze is a very good player. Technical, fast, optimistic, a good shooter. His weakness might be that he is not fond of passing the ball to better placed team mates. Arteta would quickly reeducate him in this respect, though.


A late bloomer is Ademola Lookman of Atalanta (previously Charlton, Leicester, Fulham, Everton and Liepzig). He was the best player on finalist Nigeria during this year’s Africa Cupe of Nations and also scored a hat trick for Atalanta in the Europe League final. Despite playing for Nigeria, Lookman is an English citizen.

His transfer fee has been estimated at around €20 million.

The French football magazine L’Equipe has given Lookman a  10/10 rating, previously only given to very few players, Haaland and Messi among them.

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