Who Said Anything About Panic Buying?

May 12, 2009

Another post by blogger “D” (thanks whoever you are).
A quote from Sky Sports yesterday read as follows:

“Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger insists that two heavy home defeats in the space of a week will not persuade him to panic buy in the summer”

Sky Sports isn’t the gospel when it comes to accurate reporting, but we can all hear those words coming from our manager.

It may seem premature to talk about this when there are still 2 games left of this season, but realistically, whatever the outcome, they will not change the situation we find ourselves in.

If you look at it logically, we are in a very similar position to the same time last year in as much as we suspect that some players will leave and we want to see new players brought in.

Of course we don’t need to panic buy. We have 15 weeks to do our research, amass the funds, talk to players and agents and secure the deals. The ‘panic’ was created by us last season when we dragged our feet, quibbled over money and simply just left it too late. The purchase of Silvestre could be viewed as a panic buy. The failure to secure Alonso had nothing to do with panic but everything to do with uncertainty over money.

On the plus side…….. we are told that there are funds available….. we now have Ivan Gazidis to execute the deals….. we have plenty of time.

On the minus side……we may choose to persist with the youth experiment for one more season……we don’t know if any of the current squad will be sold……there is instability at Board level and a power struggle is taking place behind the scenes….we still have to make hefty repayments on the loans to build the Emirates.

Opinions as to who should be sold (assuming we can find a buyer for them) and which positions need to be reinforced will vary. The squad lacks players experienced in winning things. We do not have enough players with leadership qualities on the pitch. We need to bring in some height and strength in the defence and power and tackling ability in the midfield. We need to strengthen the spine of the team. You could argue that a club of our size and aspirations should have a world class international goalkeeper. We probably have too many strikers….but not enough clinical strikers……

So there is plenty to do and WE HAVE PLENTY OF TIME……

Arsenal FC…… don’t waste our time with meaningless spin and statements designed to lower our expectations in case the club fails to deliver the much needed personnel. Don’t even bother to try to paper over the cracks. Pull out your fingers, sort yourselves out and start to reinforce the squad and rebuild our damaged reputation so that world class players will once again want to play for the Arsenal.

Advertisements

Rumour has it, Arsene thinks we don’t need a striker ?????

May 11, 2009

Here are the thoughts of an Arsenal fan within an hour of yesterdays match..

I write this having watched from my armchair, and in my living room – no I am not a season ticket holder, and I cant get to many games, but trust me, that doesnt make me any the less a supporter than anyone else, and my view is my view..

The team:

Fabianski,Sagna, Toure, Silvestre, Gibbs, Walcott, Song, Fabregas, Diaby, Nasri,Van Persie – Hoorah I thought, Theo must be playing alongside Robin…

In truth, I am still unsure who was playing where, Diaby seemed to be on the left, Theo on the right, and the rest in the midfield!

The final whistle has now gone and I feel numb, nothing – stunned by the result. The first half was the best football I have seen our club play for a long while, and after 15-20 minutes should have had this game all but killed off.

However, typical day out for us, strike after strike = miss after miss, and something in me knew we would regret those misses.

So, we lost 4-1, but it shouldn’t have been. The last goal was offside so that makes it 3-1 and Ade should have had a penalty so it maybe would have been 3-2, but still we would have lost..

I could talk all day about how we missed so many chances, but instead I am going to go through each player and give my thoughts on their performance..

5 -Fabianski – The first goal was a let in, he stood and watched it go in, he was too slow. Also, he just had one of those days where his positioning was poor.

8- Sagna – I cant fault him today, he defended well, pressed forward and sent a few good crosses in, he was back to his last season days in my opinion.

7- Toure – He was Mr Reliable today, and the own goal was so unjust.

5- Silvestre – Sorry everyone, he is poor, didn’t close down for the second goal, Djourou should always start before him. In fact Ave should always start before him!!

7- Gibbs – I thought he had a very good game, especially after Tuesday, this man will be better than both Clichy and Cole in a few years. On occasions he and 6- Diaby linked up well, but had Arshavin been there instead of Diaby, that left sided attack today would have got us a goal or two.

7- Theo – His best game in terms of getting in the game, today was his chance, he had freedom in a five man midfield (i think thats how it was)
He ran, he ran, he crossed, he ran some more – he chance after chance after chance – Another day he would have come away with five goals, today
he missed one after the other – but his day will come, even Thierry struggled for the first few games…….. But don’t forget, you have to be there to miss.

6 – Cesc – He should never been given the armband, said it before, and I say it again. He is not a leader, he is like Gallas, his head needs to be free, and then his football is free.. Today he was yet again, Mr Average – he was also lucky to stay on the pitch.

6- Diaby – missed a sitter, or maybe two. He blows hot and then so very cold in the game. He is not a left sided winger, in fact I don’t know what he is, but I really don’t think he is an Arsenal player.

8 -Song – What can I say, I thought he kept Essien and Lampard quiet, he did well. Sometimes his passing goes wild, but today the poor chap had no-one to pass to in the second half

6 -Nasri – Another Mr Average performance..

5- Robin – Sorry all, I would sell him, he is all arms and legs now, and did anyone count how many times he fell over today ??

Subs –

6 -Nik – great header for the goal, but some of his passing after that was woeful

4 -Ade – Chip the bloody keeper Ade, not fall over for a penalty – get your passport fella, you are off.

5 -Denilson – Trying hard to think of what to say, but he didn’t do a lot really..

The subs though were all made a bit too late, at 2-0 down we needed a change, we didn’t get it again

How does Cesc get booked and Mikel walks away from a bad tackle time after time without any punishment ??

What more is to be said about a game which should have been done and dusted in our favour, but what we missed was the one player in the position that our leader says we don’t need ?

Our only hope is that last year at this kind of time he said he was going to buy three experienced players, we got one, and he is on the verge of drawing his pension. Maybe, just maybe this year he will do the same. The only difference is that he says we don’t need a striker this summer, lets hope that that means he knows we do…..

Signed Grommit.


Redemption….of a kind!…..

May 9, 2009

Another post by blogger ‘D’ ..

What is left for us to look forward to for the rest of the season?

Well for one, we get to play the two teams we could/should have beaten to progress to a final and actually win something.

On Sunday we meet Chelsea at the Emirates. The sores from our CL exit will still be open and weeping. Chelsea will be like a wounded animal after their CL debacle, so the game will be a test of character for both sides.

Much has been said about our ‘team spirit’. Arsene has a reputation for not seeing things on the pitch but apparently he observes team spirit that is strangely invisible to the rest of us on the evidence of the Man U game. The only sign of a burning passion to win on Tuesday came from Nasri, who, as is often the case, picked up a yellow card for his efforts and will miss the first of our CL qualifiers next season – we are not going to finish above the Chavs or Pool.

The fans did their best to urge the team on at the Emirates. Arsene’s body language after we conceded was terrible. We lacked leaders on the pitch and we lacked a leader on the touchline. RVP tried to console Gibbs after his mistake. If the young left back had looked across at the bench, he would have seen his manager with his head in his hands – and that was pretty much his demeanour for the rest of the game.

Buck up Arsene! It’s you’re job is to lift the players when they are struggling.

There is only one acceptable response to our CL exit. Whether we win or lose against Chelsea, we need to see a performance full of desire, passion and effort. Arshavin can supply brilliance and hopefully, along with Nasri, he will offer Cesc the playing options to rediscover his form. Amongst the right players, Cesc is world class. When working with mediocrity, he becomes anonymous.

A suggestion to Arsene……..Tell the players that they are ALL playing for their place in the squad for next season and it is up to them to prove over the next three games that they have the desire, character and ability to play for the Arsenal. Don’t let our season peter out. Let’s give the fans some value for money for these last few games, and some hope that there will be changes over the summer to make us stronger and more competitive come September.


Alter Course and Then Sail….

May 6, 2009

I was so upset with our result on Tuesday that I cannot even eat. It has hit me hard and if anyone has been reading my posts over the last month  will  have read that I knew this was coming.. It is not something that I want to gloat over it gives me no satisfaction whatsoever.
I don’t want Mr Wenger OBE  gone, but I want THIS Arsene Wenger gone, the one who after an embarrassing defeat says.
“It’s easy to say that we need a bit of experience but I am convinced that we have the quality and we’ll continue to develop. If you look at the average age of the team it is still very young. To reach that level deserves a lot of credit but tonight we were caught by a team who has the art to kill and take advantage of mistakes. I believe Cristiano Ronaldo today gave us a tough time.”

We need a manager who can see and address the problems, we need a manager who says it like it is…

“We were not good enough and we will have a bit of a shake up in the summer”

I am hoping Arsene is going to take some action and he isn’t convinced that what he is saying is accurate and it is PR spin. But if he  is saying  what he means then he is out of touch with how the supporters feel and we need more honesty.
He also heaped more pressure on himself by playing a FA cup semi final without arguably our best player who never needed to be rested, Everton and David Moyes showed us that Man U can be dumped out of a cup in the semi’s.. This may turn into a good thing long term because winning the FA cup would be papering over the cracks of this youth system.

I am also hoping that this board shake up that has just taken place will have a positive effect and take Arsene out of his comfort zone, I also feel that joint ownership is not working.. Why would Kroenke want to invest money into Arsenal from an outside source to make us more successful if it increases the value of shares that he wants to purchase??
Why not wait and wait,  then when we are on a downhill slide the share price will go down and then snap up the less wanted and cheaper shares?? Then invest!!!

The fans need to know where this is going!!!!

Onto the fans, like someone said on the blog the other day the ones that left early should hang their heads in shame, they don’t support Arsenal they support winning teams.. you support through good times and bad.. These new wave of supporters are a blight to the modern game and is something that the club needs and seeks, but true fans detest and It would not surprise me if they went and supported Chelsea, I had and I say “had” in the past tense a ‘mate’ who was a Arsenal season ticket holder in the eighties I even bought his 89’ shirt off him because it no longer fitted  when he took up bodybuilding, anyway the last I heard of him he started to support Chelsea because they were winners, this is the same bloke that cheats at golf… sums him up to me…

We have to be very careful what we want as supporters collectively, their are two radical ends of the spectrum and I suggest they are as dangerous as each other.. We have the impatient “I want a trophy and I want it now” ones. They are like the Geordies, the Spuds and Real (Spanish government) Madrid. Sack the manager , sack the players mentality.. On the other end of the divide is the “ If he wears an Arsenal shirt I will support him” fan this is very commendable but we are not the Samaritans or the welfare state, they will keep flogging a dead horse and won’t admit things are wrong… Arsenal are in business to win things.. If we don’t   the support will drop off and we will not get the prize money from winning these tournaments or the worldwide recognition that we need to grow.. A viscous circle that Man U although in debt are showing the world how to do that.

I don’t think we need to go as far as to buy big like Man U, our manager is the best in the world , but he has gone off course, he has gone too far down the youth development route. It is a good idea if we don’t depend on it and it is self sufficient financially, but Arsene believes in it a bit too much and seems to grow attached to those players because they look good in training every day.. Well looking good in training and looking good in Semi finals of big tournaments are two different things as we learned Tuesday night..
Ajax are another club that has gone down this route and have now dropped out of being one of the best in Europe to a feeder club to the big boys, I know this is also partly down to the demise of the Dutch League.
What I do know is that evolution is better than revolution, also unless you have an endless budget to cherry pick the very best players we have to be very careful who we buy for every Arshavin their is a Jeffers around the corner for the same price..

Let’s think about Arsenal as if we was running that business and think as if we were managing it  and push towards what is for the  best… the best for Arsenal..


Football isn’t Complicated.

May 6, 2009

Today’s Post by is by supporter ‘D’

Bob Wilson has often been quoted a saying that the reason he loves football is because it is a very simple game. All you have to do is be strong and defend the goal area, take control and be creative in the midfield, and have clinical predatory firepower up front. These are the basics of the beautiful game. Manchester United displayed all of those attributes last night.

The job of the manager is to assemble the personnel to fulfil those criteria, to train them to play together and then pick a team and devise the tactics to win games. We are guilty of over-complicating our style of football to the point that it only works when the opposition is foolish enough to let us play.

The reason we have won nothing for the last five years is because we have failed to do the basics. We haven’t assembled a squad capable of winning trophies. We haven’t been able to mould the players into a balanced team. We haven’t effectively coached them tactically on how to beat opposition that defends deep or how to change a game plan when our approach isn’t working.

Whether we persevere on the same lines as the last four years or have a mass clear out and rethink our basic approach to Arsenal football, only time will tell. I expect that unrest amongst some fans will be growing to fever pitch over the summer. We must all remember one thing…the club is bigger than any player, the manager or the board. It is our club and we deserve better….


Back To The Future and Captain Kremlin..

May 3, 2009

Last night whilst watching yesterdays game on Football First I thought I was going to feel really proud of our youngsters and our squad, then I realized these wins at the end of the season may be detrimental to next years campaign.

When the transfer window opens and we have the chance to buy players Arsene can always fall back on these games and say we have strength and belief and all that tosh.

In reality we did the same thing last year, we  fielded  weakened sides mainly because of injuries and the Ice Cream man got himself suspended, so we won a few games with no pressure on them and got a respectable third, we would not have won those games if we was fighting for first, these youngsters would have bottled it.. I have a new theory the Premiership before Christmas is a tight competitive league but after Christmas some teams have given up the fight, Middlesborough and Portsmouth being two examples, so when we beat them we fool ourselves and think we are fantastic but when we meet the big boys on the up like Man U and Chelsea that’s when the truth hits home.

We  then go into the transfer window with the attitude of we would like that player but if we cannot buy him for so much it doesn’t matter we have all these great players that won at Portsmouth etc.. So we don’t deal like our lives depend on it.

We all know these players are good,  but will they stick together for 4 years and indeed can we wait four years to see how good they will be??  RvP doesn’t seem to want to and whilst we are producing players one end the conveyor belt is chucking them of at the other..

Yesterday we looked composed and elegant but we were flattered by the scoreline, we are not clinical enough and could have conceded as many as we scored at vital times in the match, that’s football okay it may be,  but it would be better if we could learn from these pieces of luck and try to eliminate the mistakes from our games?

We were very lively and defended well from the striker back, are you watching Ade???? Bendtner, Vela and Captain Fantastic Arshavin all closing down the Pompey defence.

The first goal 9/10 times it would have been saved, but this was no ordinary goalkeeper this was England’s No1 goalkeeper and he gifted a goal to Bendtner when he let a half decent header fumble through his grasp. Bendtners “windmill” goal celebration straight out of the Mick Channon’s goal celebration book.. Was that payback time for all the Pompey fans booing our Theo??

The second goal came from a penalty when Andrey was brought down for the second time, in the big games last year like Hleb’s in the Champions League we never get a sniff of a penalty in Mickey Mouse games like these we always get the “Lucky Arsenal” jibes and they always even up and all that. Righty oh!!!

The third came from Vela  after we could just have easily conceded one, when he latched on to a rebound from a Arshavin shot.

I hope that Gazadis and co realize that we would have lost that game if it wasn’t for our captain for the day, the player we spent real money on!!

Fabianski.. 7.5.. Solid performance with some good reaction saves..

Sagna .. 7.. Faultless had load of time on the ball If he of played LB that would have been too many changes..

Song.. 7.. Looking every inch a Arsenal squad player, I cannot see him being world class but a first class stand in at CB and in the DM position.

Djourou.. 7 .. Nice solid performance he looked good next to Song in last years Carling Cup campaign.

Eboue.. 6.5 .. Caught out of position a lot that saw Arshavin playing left back .. funny in these games..

Ramsey.. 7..Not sure what he will become a bit like Frank Lampard I suppose good but plain..

Denilson.. 6.5 He should have shone like a beacon in this Arsenal side, but just another game.. Okay though.

Walcott.. 5.5.. Got plenty of stick off the away fans, may of hampered his game, poor final ball in as usual..

Arshavin. 8.. Made a surprisingly good captain ..Outrageous at times, picking up the Premiership pace now and class is showing.

Bendtner.. 7.5 .. Two goals  made him look good,  but a hard working performance , seems to fit into the team better than Ade now..

Vela..7.. The cheeky chappie, hard working needs a bit of a run in the team, have we time for all these experiments?

The subs who came on just fitted in but the game was over.. Didn’t see the point of Bishcoff, part of the Arsene charity I guess..

A quick word about our away support, the Sol done the double and the Kanu boo’s were loud and clear.. well done lads, class….


Stan to make Arsenal great again and a day out at the seaside for the kiddies???

May 2, 2009

The latest news hitting the headlines this weekend is that our American friend has upped his stake to a measly 28.3% making him the biggest shareholder at the club…I welcome this with open arms for two reasons…

Firstly and more simply…I don’t want the Uzbek that looks like the bad guy from dangermouse to take control….Baron Von Usmanov looks like someone I wouldn’t buy a used car from so I definitely don’t wont him in charge of our club…

Secondly and more importantly for our future…I feel a freshen up is needed at the club and has been for a while…whilst I am proud of our traditionalist values I also am of the opinion that the situation behind the scenes has become stale. The current board have become complacent in recent years and have allowed Wenger to run the club as he likes…..The Kroenke /Gazidis combo brings a fresh of breath air to the club…. Americans are as competitive as anyone and they like to win….I fully believe that they will try to corner the American market with the Arsenal brand….but that also means winning trophies to help to sell the brand….and to win trophies you need to spend money….Kroenke and Gazidis are sports businessmen….businessmen speculate to accumulate so I’m hopeful of a fruitful transfer window….fingers crossed eh??

Onto the footie….

With Wednesdays shenanigans well and truly out of the system(?) we get to support our great team once again in the competition that is our bread and butter….We go to Pompey still in the battle for the great English prize that is 3rd place and I’m really excited that Wenger has declared he will field a full strength squad to achieve this reward, even though we have a CL semi final second leg to play with a goal deficit to make up???

Ok, Ok, sarcastic remarks out of the way….i’m sorry but i’m still smarting with the team selections from the Chelsea and ManUtd games….

I personally enjoy it when we play Pompey…they have done well to get where they are and their fans are amongst the best in the PL… Remember when we thrashed them at their patch in the days of Henry, Bergkamp, Vieira et al (huge sigh)???? Pompey “can we play you every week'” fans remember where they came from, proud to be where they are and are appreciative of good pure football teams, even when they lose…so I have a huge amount of respect for them so they deserve to see us field our strongest team ….

Although I feel the fight for third is meaningless, we still have a 20 game unbeaten run to maintain so I suspect Wenger will stick with the 4-2-3-1 formation..seeing as though it works against mediocre teams, and I suspect Wenger will practically field a full strength squad…

I feel he’ll go with:

Almunia

Eboue Kolo JD Gibbs

Song Denilson

Theo Cesc AA

Bendtner

RVP, Dudu and Silvestre have injuries so it is very unlikely they will play…and Sagna, Nasri, Ade and Diaby will be rested seeing as though they are vital to the cause on tuesday(especially Ade and Diaby)….

I don’t feel there is any importance to todays game… so I’d rest the ‘big’ players….I’d put them all in a room for the day with a big mirror on the wall… and make them watch the repeats of the Chelsea, Liverpool and Manure games….and I’d play the kids and give the armband to Arshavin…

I’d stick with the same back 5…but i’d like to see Ramsey and Coquelin as the deep midfielders, with  AA, Merida and Vela as the attacking three, with Nikki up top….

Whatever team we field, I expect us to win because we are The Arsenal and we are the greatest team the world has ever seen..FACT…. and its a fact because we all say so every week…and we’ll cruise it 2-0… with AA scoring both goals….

Today the club we love will bring a huge smile to our faces until Tuesday when its squeaky bum time…..lets beat Pompey..take the momentum into the 2nd leg and lets have Manure…. Rio is 50/50 and they are defensively crap without Rio…remember Gooners…we beat them 2-1 at THOF earlier in the season….we almost had them 2-0 if it wasn’t for that late goal… WE CAN DO IT…. WE MUST DO IT…but first things first and lets show Pompey why their fans want to play us every week…..

Enjoy the match guys…don’t forget to give all your predictions….a holiday a Ricos playing with the Chucks is up for grabs (now)….