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Let us sing our Song – but could it be the final chorus?

By Walter Broeckx

Leaving the defence behind us we move up to midfield and have a look at Alex Song.

Some people still call him our defensive midfielder but I do think that this is a term that no longer is used at Arsenal anymore. I don’t think Wenger wants to have a midfielder who just sits their in front of the defenders waiting fro what might happen. Maybe those blaming Song when he goes forward and joins in attack are still living a few years back in time when this was the way to play football. As most of the time Wenger is leading the way, we will maybe in a few years time discover that other coaches have followed his way and forget about the pure defensive midfielder.

Maybe the future is more about having a midfield in which all of them can defend, all of them can attack, all of them score a goal every now and then and all of them just interchange their position to the requirement of the game. And I think if you look at our midfielders they all fit in to that description a bit. But for now we will go back to Song or Songinho as some call him.

Going from “not fit to wear the shirt” to his form last season, I still find it unbelievable that still some supporters don’t want to admit that he is Arsenal worthy material. Some people still only look at him to find the slightest mistake in his game to be able to say:  “see, told you he is rubbish”. Song is another one of those players who have made an enormous transition. Yes he was a very rough diamond when he came to Arsenal. But thanks to the cutting and moulding from Wenger he has turned in to one of the strongest midfielders we have.

Only just over 2 seasons ago Wenger still counted him as a defender. And when we need to bring on another striker when things don’t work out and take off a central defender Wenger usually drops Song a bit back to cover for that defender. So Song can defend and still does when needed.

But he also has a great engine that keeps him running for the full 90 minutes in each game. I think he covers a lot of distance but I don’t have the stats to back this up but he sure gives the impression of always being near to where the ball is. Battling, fighting, dribbling, passing, you name it he does it.

The last real defensive midfielder we had was Lassana Diarra who went on to Portsmouth and then to Real Madrid. What drove me nuts about him was that he was so bad in passing the ball. This not only happened at Arsenal and was for me one of the reasons he never could cement his place with us. But it also happened a lot at Real Madrid when I saw him play there. Tell me what good is it to have a defensive midfielder who can tackle like a madman, who commits too many fouls and maybe can win the ball back with all this but then only to lose it again when he tries to pass the ball to a team mate and screws up? That was (and is) Diarra for me.

Song is 10 times better than Diarra. Because Song can dribble much better, he can pass the ball much better, he will not lose the ball that easy. Song can score the odd goal on occasion. But what he has added to this game since being given the liberty to be a more all round midfielder is the killer ball to a striker. His assists number has gone up and he was heavily involved in a few spectacular goals  in the last seasons.

Last season Song played 34 games. Started all of them. So apart from being banned, he was a player that would always start. In a way this will not change that easily I think and this could be the perfect pick for being a captain. But….alas there is a big but. The first but is that he has 2 years to go on his contract. So if we would make him captain now, it would mean that next summer we would be having the same situation with our captain and have him entering the final year of his contract. And the second but is that his agent is a man called…. Dein. You know the same Dein that has made all our other captains leave in the last seasons.

Will Song be different from the other Dein disciples? One can hope but for some reason I really do think that Song could be entering his final year for us. The good thing is that it will be his best ever season for Arsenal. Of  course the chance could still exist that Song sees the light, ditches Dein and become an Arsenal legend…well I can dream. Because I sure would not want Song to leave us to be honest. After having seen how Wenger turned this young player in to one of the strongest and most all round midfielders in the PL, it would be a hard blow to see him go. The only good thing about if Song would leave because of Dein being his manager is that as far as I know he is the last of the Dein boys at Arsenal. Alex take my advice: ditch Dein.

So what do I expect from Song this season? More of the same from last season. Being even better, stronger and helping out where he is needed. With a bit of luck we will not see him go to the ANC this winter as Cameroon is having a dip with their national team for the moment so that could be our bonus. I think when he is fit and not banned Song will always be on the team sheet. And I am looking forward to see him play and show what a great player he has become and stick up his middle finger to all those who have abused him and told how rubbish he was.

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43 comments to Let us sing our Song – but could it be the final chorus?

  • Alan

    Song has indeed come on in leaps and bounds in the past 2 seasons. I expect similar progression next year. I also think we have adequate cover for the defensive midfield spot in Frimpong and Coquelin. Yes they maybe raw but both have a lot of potential to become great players. I think the club should focus on progressing them rather than looking at players like M’Vila and Capoue.

  • Ransome Philips

    I completely agree with you, I must confess I was one of the gunners that realy criticised song when he initially arrived. Song moved on to make tremendous improvement over the year and whether we like it or not, he has become one of the best midfielders in the premier league considering his amazing tackle and sweet passes. Yes he is a great player, but I don’t see him being a beter captain at arsenal presently because of the likes of the verminator, Rosicky and so on……..

  • Sammy

    I enjoyed reading Walter’s article about our shining star midfielder Alex Song. I couldn’t agree more on his comment that Alex is Arsenal’s unsung hero. The quality of his game keeps on improving to get to where it is today and if Song is not the back bone of Arsenal at present time, I am not sure who else would be. I can’t think of Arsenal without Song. Yes, we do have another jewel that is “Rosicky”, what separate the two is Song’s strength to be there through thick or thin. Don’t get me wrong, without a doubt Rosicky is one of the most gifted players in Europe and his technical skills are second to none but due to the position he plays he had to come across rough tackling defenders time after time again and that make him miss games to recuperate. There is another rising star midfielder at Arsenal by the name of Couclin. I have similar hope for Couqlin to turn out to be one of the best midfield players in Europe, if Wenger gives him enough play time that he deserves. He has the quickness, clean tackles and an eye to make penetrating passes. I wish to see him more envolved this coming season.

  • Matt Clarke

    Song is certainly a fine player and I really do hope that he plays out his career with us.

    A couple of seasons ago, when we were getting kicked all over the park by certain teams, he stepped-up.

    Now my view of that sort of bullying is that you can soon get rid of it if someone (preferably more than one) else in the team shows the miscreants that they have been ‘noticed’. In the George Graham days this was ably performed by Adams & Co. However, until recently our defence lacked that sort of attitude.

    But, in my view, Song provided the much needed midfield muscle. Sometimes he went too far for sure and hurting other players unfairly is never right, but he was effective.

    Putting it simply – he showed spirit.

    More lately he has, of course, combined that with tremendous vision and skill.

    I surely hope he stays a lo-ong time.

    Going back, Walter, to your analysis of the midfield I realised that you are right – that IS how many view midfielders. I mention this because it is so alien to me. I subscribe (instinctively) to the view you give of midfielders covering as much of the pitch as they can (rarely actually being IN midfield, in fact) attacking or defending as needs-be.

  • ak47

    if dein wasnt his agent id be getting his name on that reign number.
    my rvp2008 is getting burned. i might even make it a youtube vid. not just yet tho, we might get afellay to convince him to stay. it seems crazy not to for 6mil if we could for many reasons.
    cant believe we’ve got his bloody national flag on the sleeve.

  • slugboy

    I think song has undoubtedly been one of our best players for a few years. Shame about the choice of agent. Possibly one of the strongest midfielders ever when he doesn’t have the ball. Hope he is offered a good contract and decides to stay.

  • Lanz

    Lovely, Walter. Lovely. I have noticed that what you said about having midfielders possessing both attacking and defensive abilities IS the future. I guess it is part of why Belhanda was more interesting to AW that Hazard. Song, Diaby are like that and Arteta was such a revelation last season. I believe it is this very quality that makes Iniesta and Xavi play as if they are three people and we are very closets that at present. Although Coquelin and Frimpong are there I think we still need one more person, considering that both Asharvin and Benayoun may both be absent next season. I really hope Song stays and we as well get one more like him.

  • GarytheRed

    Sorry disagree with you. Song is an average player his work rate is low and his overall passing is pretty poor. Lost count at the amount of times in a game he gave the ball away. Yes he chipped a couple of great balls for RVP but not much else. I would use him only as a back up centre half or midfielder. He was carried in most games by Mikel Arteta by far our best midfield player. We definitely need a replacement for Song and that is the brilliant Jack Wilshire also a new goalscoring midfield player to replace Rosicky who was better last year but not good enough now. Before anyone says do I go well yes I do and share my view of Song with many in Clock End. Alex Song he ain’t all that.

  • The font

    I don’t like to criticize any of our players but referring to song having a good season you have to look at his opta scores which are not great he did not play holding midfield he played a roaming position with arteta playing behind him arteta IMHO had a very good season with jack coming back and the outside possibility of m.vila coming and only just over a year to run on his contract I would not be surprised to see him sold

  • rusty

    As Song sits deep but still manages to make assists, I would say “he could be our Pirlo”… except that he is a much, much better defender than Pirlo, and he is more mobile. It’s been a joy to watch his influence on the game grow over the past few seasons.

    Unfortunately, I agree about the longer-term prognosis as well. Dein the Younger appears quite happy to unsettle our players year after year.

  • Lanz

    I forgot to count-in Wilshire.
    @The font, the point being made is that Song will be more appreciated if you take your mind off the traditional beliefs about how he should sit in front of the defenders. Remember how many juicy assists he gave during the season?

  • bc

    Last season our midfield created more chances than any other team apart from man city. a midfield comprising in the main walcott ramsey song arteta gervinho. with back up from chamberlain rosicky coquelin benayoun arshavin and frimpong. this season i expect the midfield to be walcott rosicky song arteta podolski with back up chamberlain wilshire coquelin diaby podolski gervinho lansbury frimpong arshavin ryo.

    now can someone tell me how we are possibly worse off in midfield?

    ok up front last season we had rvp chamakh and park. its looking like giroud chamakh and park for this season. ok giroud might not be as successful as rvp was last season. but if u compare goals.scored to.goal opportunities his conversion rate wins hands dow.

  • bc

    Oops put arshavin in instead of ramsey for this season

  • bc

    No.i jever i put podolski in twice……ill get my coat!

  • Anne

    Good article, Walter. Maybe it’s time for us to learn more about this Darren Dein character. Does anyone know how it first was announced to the public that he was Robin’s agent? I’m trying to trace this situation back to the beginning.

  • Anne

    Basically, I’m trying to confirm that Darren Dein “representation” is, in fact, a voluntary business relationship. 🙂 Seems a technicality, but there is something odd about it.

    Because it most definitely seems that everyone Dein represents is out the door. But then, why did Arsene make Robin captain?

    Arsene would have had to have known in advance that Robin was going to leave, and he would most certainly have known that Robin’s representation was hostile to his own ambitions and goals for Arsenal. And yet, he chose not to hold that against Robin personally. He took the opposite approach, and made Robin the captain of Arsenal.

    Why? Something doesn’t add up here.

  • bob

    Dein’s ubiquity around Arsenal assets can be culled from searches on lots of press and blog coverage of his agent/advisory relationships [which are more and less defined, depending on the individual story/analysis] to Cesc, Thierry Henry, Adebayor, Alex Song (esp. this past March) and RvP (most lately as an “advisor,” but in some accounts called an agent) There were good articles last year, including I think a detailed one here by Tony that mentioned a set of co-ownership interests for certain players; and in which Dein the Lesser and AW’s French nemesis from Marseille (Nasri’s agent) were both mentioned in some capacity. His brokering moves of Adebayor to ManShitty, Madrid and Tottenham, Thierry’s to Barca and Red Bulls, Cesc’s to Barca, and now some advisory hand in RvP’s strategizings. For his connections and the level of his clients and these teams, he’s been regarded as an uber-agent and deal-maker, not a clerk or mere agent. He’s also got a listing in his company or partnership in London. I don’t have time right now for links, but at least it’s a start and more clarification would be great. But he does not play to the galleries and seek the limelight, hence his effectiveness. Anyway, there’s something to deepen.

  • Raw Veg

    Song’s not bad but don’t say he’s ten times better than Diarra, that sounds like something a child would say. Also the idea that “Wenger is leading the way, we will maybe in a few years time discover that other coaches have followed his way and forget about the pure defensive midfielder” is akin to reinventing the wheel, I think you’ll find Hungary were doing this 60 years ago.

  • bjtgooner

    Good article Walter; Song has certainly become a very fine player – almost a box to box midfielder. I may be old fashioned but I do like to have at least one of the midfielders covering the defence and Song does appear to be best equipped to do this.

    Anne, I agree about Dein the Lesser – he has been very well rewarded for moving our top players out – everytime AW gets close to building a championship team. Ideally I would like to see Dein the Lesser’s influence removed from the scene.

    As a follow on – do agents have to provide audited accounts and are they published?

  • Klaus

    I agree he had a good season, and I really like him as a player, but where did you get this idea that he chips in with the occasional goal? Like the rest of our midfield (bar Arteta) he seems to meet the oppertinity to have a shot with a straight refusal. Arsenal are in desperate need of an attacking central midfielder who isn’t afraid to shoot. We missed the goals of Nasri and Fabregas desperately last campaign, which put all the pressure on RVP to bang them in. By the looks of it though, Arsebal aren’t going to have such a Marquee man who can be relied upon to score 30 plus. Keep Song, he does need to work on his confidence infront of goal, and to reduce the silly fouls he is noted for giving… Possibly offer him captaincy if he signs a long term deal.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Anne, unfortunately, I think wenger values loyalty, possibly even at times to a fault,, and hopes it to be reciprocated, these days, not sure it is always the case. There is a case to be made that wenger does not really over rate the title captain, and uses it to try and keep players. For many continental teams the role of captain means not so much, think the Italian national team at one stage just gave it to their most senior player.
    I hope vp, theo and song stay, but anyone associated with Darren dein, precedent tells us to fear the worst….and start planning, as, if Grimaldi is to be believed, the club are already doing so. We need players who have nothing to do with this so called agent, just hope jack is not next, or kos, or vermaelen. Vp has another agent, but dein appears to have muscled in with his families transparent agenda. Song has become a fine player, would love to see a great season from him whatever his agenda. If he wants out, others wait in the wings , arteta can guide them through.

  • Wooby

    @Anne, I think Wenger’s hands were somewhat tied in naming a captain after Cesc. When we think back to last year, after Cesc left, there were not too many candidates for the captaincy. Plus, knowing RVP’s contract status, I think Wenger wanted to make him feel important and perhaps extract from him a commitment to stay at the club.

    Here is an article I dug up on Darren Dein:

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2110640/Why-Robin-van-Persie-leave-Arsenal-David-Deins-son.html

    My apologies if others had previously linked to it. Not sure what to make this Darren Dein although I still have my suspicions that part of his mandate maybe to act out revenge on the club for pushing his father out.

  • PJ

    I was about to correct you; ANC is every two years so Song won’t be going anywhere in Jan 2013. But ANC is now every odd numbered year to avoid clashing with the WC

    I don’t think Song’s going anywhere soon. He’s part of the loyal backbone along with Szczesny, Vermaelen and Wilshere. Although I thought the same about van Persie…

  • kc

    Song is a very good DM, period. Sometimes he is caught out, especially by defensive teams who plays the ballover the top to the wings. Its not his fault as we play a very high line; he has to push up. Defensive teams then position their strikers on the wing and then play balls over the top to them. This makes it very difficult for CBs to pick them out. The solution is not to play a high line. Then again, we will have to change our style of play. This system works well against top opponents. Perhaps, against weaker teams we should play 3 defenders, 2 wing backs and two covering midfielders and three attacskers. This will cover the long balls. The midfielders will cover the centre and stillwe will have a very attacking formation.
    Discuss.
    Anyway, with Song, if he was not playing for Arsenal, we willbe hearing a hugh clamour from fans to sign him. Such is the vagaries of some fans.

  • Gerry Lennon

    I have long been a fan of Alex Song, right from his younger days. One area of his game not mentioned, yet has been used on a few occasions, and that is ability to play an emegency centre-half. Very useful when subs are no longer available?
    I do think using the stats to criticise his passing skills miss what was happening on the field. Without his attempts at defence-splitting passes would have meant the label of tippy-tappy football being more firmly hung around their necks. The players that were available last season seemed either unwilling(lack of confidence) or uanable(lack of skill) to attempt such a pass, and the ball would go backwards or sideways.
    In some respects I disagree with the comment about having somebody ‘sitting in front of the back four/defenders’, because one of the reasons why Song was able to go into the final third was because Arteta largely did that job? Remember how he played at Everton? Would he have been as successful if the roles were reversed?
    I will repeat my opinion, that M’vila is the glue that would bind defence and attack far better than the likes of Wilshere or Coquelin, both of whom I am a big fan of also, but in a slightly different role. Initially I feel it would be at the expense of Arteta, but then he could play the advanced/box-to-box role with Song whilst Wilshere gets back to full fitness, or Coquelin develops into that role. Not to mention the hole that will/may be created by the AFCON next January??
    My point is, the player we need to start this season(if the price drops, or Capoue’s rises) is M’vila, or at least somebody in that mould. I’ve yet to be convinced the he is the villian he is made out to be. Certainly one that AW could not polish up in the way of Song and RVP.
    If anything showed us last season was that when too many players pushed forwards we could be undone far too easily. Less so on Sagna’s side becacause that is where Arteta was mainly stationed, but Gibbs/Santos did not have that luxury. The right signing in this area could make all the difference?
    I’ve made my preference known, and it becomes even more acute if you are looking at ‘the last year of contract’ issues on the near horizon?

  • Brickfields Gunners

    It says a lot when the bent refs of the EPL were fast to cripple us by the early booking of Song on very flimsy ground.
    Our fans may not all rate him but the opposition (players ,bookies ,fans ,refs) knew all well that by hindering Song they were weakening Arsenal.
    With the EPL spot fixing scandal now being confirmed , I think as for Arsenal ,the punters will still place their bets on Song (as before )being the 1st one to be booked.
    It’s a no brainer .

  • WalterBroeckx

    For your information:

    next ANC : from 19/01/2013 – 10/02/2013 in South Africa

    Sorry Alex we just hope Cameroon doesn’t qualify…

  • I agree with you – just in case anyone still doubts Alex Song – see this video:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TLebkOrvhAg

  • @Walter

    First post from your good self that I’ve felt a need to respond negatively, though respectfully.

    “…he was a player that would always start.”
    Maybe because he no ‘real’ competition for his place. Hence Wenger’s ‘apparent’ interest in certain defensive/holding midfielders.

    You could have compared Song to other midfielders of his own ilk such as Vieira, Petit, Gilberto, Edu, Flamini (albeit for one particularly good year), and others, but you chose not to.
    Instead you wrote eight lines of text to compare him with Diarra… by comparing Song with an inferior player (in your opinion) doesn’t boost Song’s credentials one jot.

    ps: You forgot to mention Song’s lack of pace… slower than a sloth on mogodon.

  • Apart from Busquets, Song is the best DM in the world. There are no players like him.

    I mean what kind of a person goes into a fifty-fifty with Yaya Toure and Toure is the one that goes off injured?! Rarely, the same person who can play delightful chip passes consistently as well.

    And that’s the thing that most people don’t understand. His attacking play can frustrate and make him stick out from other DMs, but he is carrying out up the teams attacking demands as well as the defensive ones. Physically he is incredible, people literally bounce off him, but he also has the ability to dribble past 4 players and cross the ball perfectly.

    Such a rare player, by far the most exciting DM.

  • Heci

    Dein isn’t RVP’s agent but a representative on commercial stuff, I think.
    Vos Kees is RVP’s agent.
    Having said that, it is a tad worrying that everyone connected to Dein leaves us for more money elsewhere.
    It’s all business I guess, but at the end of the day there are still many fans on here that want Dein’s father- DD, to come back to Arsenal.. when all the Deins have done in the past decade is ruin us since DD made his profit.

    I don’t think Song will sign a new deal. But that’s not what worries me the most. What worries me is that I, as Walter, don’t believe in the old-fashioned defensive midfielders anymore. Against teams that we have to defend deep, OK we may utilise somebody for 3-4 games a year, but what does that player do when the opposition parks the bus (both at Emirates & away most of the time)? And that brings me to the two big questions:
    A) Who can replace Song (I mean really replace him like for like)?
    B) M’vila looks like he ain’t coming this summer but I’m pretty sure he will be the natural successor to Song and he is miles and miles away, plus he is the exact old-fashioned defensive midfielder that would be a bit pointless to our tactical plan.

    We live in an era where the whole team defends and attacks, and IMO Song is one of the best at understanding this.

  • WalterBroeckx

    Big Al,

    I remember when Diarra went to Real Madrid a part of the Arsenal fans being angry and saying Wenger lost the plot. Maybe Wenger saw more in Song in the long run, than in Diarra and he was right. I could have compared with others. I only think Vieira and Gilberto were better. But who am I…

    Looking for others like M’Villa could also be explained as foreseeing the Dein part of the story? If we bring one of those we are “interested” in we would have a replacement ready if Dein removes another one. If he stays there is a fierce competition between the players.

    A bit like Giroud for RVP: if he stays fine we then have two good CF. If he goes we have one in hand.

    About the pace thing: we would be nothing with 10 Walcotts on the field. You need a mix of fast players but you also need a few slower players. But slower players that can run for 90 minutes. Song is one of those. Having 10 Songs would also not be a good thing. Unless you are a singer and want to give a concert at the Emirates of course. In that case 10 songs is a good start 😉

  • mark

    “…Because Song can dribble much better, he can pass the ball much better, he will not lose the ball that easy…”

    you have just pointed out songs flaws, not his strengths. Song can’t dribble if his life depended on it and loses the ball way to easily when under pressure. can make poor decisions too.
    for these reasons i think Song holds back the team as much as he strengthens the team. im looking forward to when Coquelin can start competing with Song and genuinely being a play who can dribble well and beat opponents with the dribble.

  • boomergooner1727

    @mark

    song can dribble, don’t know what team you’re watching. does he complete all of them? no, but none of our players were in at the top of the list in that category (dribbles completed) last year so he can’t be that bad. take a gander at that highlight video against dortmund someone posted if you need some clarification.

    i do agree that it’s a facet of his game that needs work along with awareness of his surroundings but with improvements to both i think we will have ourselves a truly elite player.

  • boomergooner1727

    walter,

    @wooby posted an article about dein that appeared in the daily mail a few months ago. after reading i briefly scrolled through the comments and saw someone suggest that dein was let go by arsenal for reasons that will never be made public. now, without any knowledge of who this person is or how they would ‘know’ if no one does is another discussion but it does make me wonder.

    the general consensus seems to be that wenger and david dein are still friends but could there be something to the jr ‘having it out’ for the club? or is he just another individual getting rich while we all suffer?

    anyone with more information please, do share.

  • ARSENAL 13

    Its reassuring to see Songs name in the starting line up. I hope he improve even further and be a star at Arsenal. And hope he stays. BUT if his head is else where……all the best to him and only hope he doesnt do a RVP (or pseudo RVP as Anne suggests)..

  • GoonerEris

    Let’s hope he signs that contract extension first, then we can talk about seeing him in the long term.

  • Shakabula Gooner

    How come Dein manages most of Arsenal stars of a certain generation but we hardly hear of him in respect of managing the stars from other clubs – even the clubs based in London?
    Some touch of nepotism at a certain period when the bulk of our transfer decisions flowed through the desk of Dein Snr.?

  • bob

    Wooby, Anne, Adam,
    Cheers, Wooby for the link. So, yes, this article from 6 March, adds Gael Clichy to the list of Arsenal players represented by Dein. So the info is viewable, it says: “Star names like Thierry Henry, Emmanuel Adebayor, Gael Clichy and Cesc Fabregas have all been represented by Dein, a qualified solicitor, on various levels over the past five years.”

    Without naming him, it alludes to Kees Vos:Talks between the club, Van Persie – who also has an agent in Holland – and his representatives are scheduled to start again over the summer.”
    Kees Vos has been regularly identified in the press as RvP’s agent. This does not make him the only agent.

    Also of interest is its mention of the SEM Group, the apparent owner of the Website chosen to display the controversial RvP message: “In the past, when the majority of Arsenal’s players were represented and managed by Jerome Anderson’s SEM Group, the star names traditionally remained loyal.”

    Also, several blogs have recently named Dein the Lesser as Alex Song’s agent, including Arseblog (in March) and JustArsenal, etc.

  • @Walter
    Thanks for reply, sorry for delay.
    I’m afraid we can never agree on Alex Song. You’re a fan of Song, I’m not.

    The fact so many fans are divided on the player basically says it all for me. If he’s as good as Song fans think, there would obviously be no division. Yes, no?
    But we ALL sing from the same hymn sheet do we not, when we discuss the likes of Bergkamp, Henry, Pires, Vieira and so many other players. Why?

    Under Wenger’s reign Vieira, Petit, Gilberto, Edu, Flamini, in my opinion, were far superior to Song. We could look back further for others, but somewhat unnecessary…

    As for your comparison with Diarra, I am actually in total agreement with you. My ‘grouse’ is that I just can’t understand why you compared Song with only ONE player, and in such depth.

    However, a good post/can of worms, Walter, very enjoyable. And thanks for not shouting at me.

  • Neutral

    Sorry for being off topic but there are pretty sad things happening around us right now…Terry is found not guilty…people sitting at the top of the ladder thinks that we are stupid…as if we don’t know anything…phrases such as ” “a zero-tolerance policy towards discrimination” are nothing but a joke now..

  • Anne

    @bob and wooby:

    Thanks for the link, Wooby, and thanks for the info, bob. It strikes me as bizarre that we keep finding out who Dein’s client list is through the media. It’s all so shadowy. Aren’t there any official records for this kind of thing? Also, whatever Dein does for Robin, Arsenal isn’t conducting negotiations with him. So where is this influence coming in? What does Dein even do? All very shady, I think. And I would say that this man is definitely no friend of Arsenal’s.

    Also, I don’t believe that all these players that are supposedly leaving Arsenal for “higher wages” are actually leaving for “higher wages.” Why would some rich guy from overseas be so interested in blowing his money by overpaying for a player that his football club doesn’t even need or play?

    Overpaying for transfers and wages is the key sign to look for in money laundering cases (if you’re just on the outside looking in like us). In such cases, the player wouldn’t actually be taking home the extra money from his wages. He would be earning more money on paper, while the money was actually funneled out of the Club to somewhere else.

    Why would a player agree to do this? What’s in it for him?
    I have no idea. They don’t exactly publish it. Maybe he gets a cut. But at the same time, I don’t think we should overlook the fact that we’re dealing with some highly dangerous people (if certain past allegations are to be believed) that are heavily invested in Arsenal right now. We shouldn’t overlook the possibility that threats might play some role.

  • Ong Bing

    I like Song, but I don’t like his hair style (no relation between performance on the pitch with hair style, so no problem).

    I am believed, if Yaya gets long injury, Mancini will catch Song.

    Damn, I hate ANC.