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The Anti-Arsenal (and Guardian) vision of Arsenal in the coming season

By Tony Attwood

I have mentioned previously that the Guardian newspaper in Britain, although never Arsenal’s best friend, has through the course of this summer, taken a sudden and dramatic turn towards the Anti-Arsenal Arsenal movement.

This is odd since basically the Guardian is a middle-class intellectual paper – and these are attributes that I don’t normally associate with the AAA.  Indeed the Guardian is also known for having at least one pro-Arsenal journalist on its books, and to me she has looked extremely uncomfortable not to say illogical, putting out the new Anti-Wenger line.

Anyway, in common with many newspapers, the Guardian has been producing reviews of Premier League clubs ahead of the new season, and this of course was a chance for the paper to reconsider its position.  In taking its Anti-Wenger pro AAA line it is aligning itself with the Sun, Talk Sprot, and BBC Radio 5’s “606” – not normal and obvious bedfellows for the Guardian.  Perhaps the dear old paper would recognise the oddity of its new standpoint.

So how did it write up Arsenal in the coming season?  It began…

“The reference point for Arsenal’s pre-season preparations was provided by the official Robin van Persie website on 4 July. The double Footballer of the Year’s declaration of independence, though, was not what any Gooner had wanted to hear.

“The striker tried to sugarcoat his “update for the fans”, which appeared under a burst of the motivational-speak that dots his site and is surely best vocalised in a Dutch ac-shent: Enjoy every moment, it can be your best!”

So, not much in the way of a look at the future.   Rather a very clear message: RVP is off, Arsenal in another terrible mess.  It went on…

“Van Persie talked about the “respect” he had for Arsène Wenger, his team-mates, the fans and their opinions but the bottom line was that he wanted to win trophies and it was clear to him that he and the club “in many aspects disagree on the way Arsenal FC should move forward”. He would not be extending his contract, which had one year to run. The Manchester clubs and Juventus are circling.”

I quite like the comparison of Billionaire clubs to birds of prey, but here we are, three paragraphs into the Guardian’s take on Arsenal next season, and all we have is some news that has been mangled through the media 86 trillion times already.

Worse, by the time the article appeared it was clear that 66% of the circling nasties were not circling at all.  The manager of Juve was on the edge of being banned for a year (which he subsequently has been), while the manager of Man City was launching a series of attacks on his own director of football for not signing players.  Indeed that 66% could be seen as 100% given the way Sir F was moaning about not getting anywhere with the transfer as his paymasters sought to cut the asking price for their new New York shares.  Maybe no one wants poor Robin (although by the time this is published I’ll probably find the young lad has just signed for Bolton).

What does it all mean?  Well, it means…

“The sense of deja vu was sickening and, once again, it shone a blinding light on the question of ambition at Arsenal. Is it enough to finish the season in a Champions League place? Why do the club’s best players keep wanting to leave? The departures of Cesc Fábregas and Samir Nasri had scarred the build-up to last season and contributed to what Wenger described as “the most disturbed pre-season” he had known. “When I go to hell one day,” he said, “it will be less painful for me than for you, because I’m used to suffering”.”

Sickening eh?  That deja vu thing over again.  Although if I may pause for a moment, the Guardian, normally so good with its use of accents in foreign names and phrases, insists on deja vu, rather than “déjà vu”.   Maybe accents are just to show us that people with accents in their names are foreign and thus not quite top drawer.  Not to be trusted.  Names like, oh I don’t know, like “Arsène” perhaps.

So “it shone a blinding light on the question of ambition at Arsenal.”  Did it?  I mean, really?

We live in a world in which a little bunch of billionaires are buying up clubs and using them as play things, marketing devises, and (in the case of Man U) sources of cash.  Those billionaires come over here, rape our clubs and try to stop us doing that old fashioned capitalist thing of making a profit and that old fashioned Victorian thing of living within your means.

It seems from that “question of ambition” statement that the left-leaning Guardian, betrayed by its political ally for 100 years, The Liberal Party (now for the first time in coalition with the far-right Conservative and Unionist Party in the UK), is actually moving its own political ground.

So, let’s consider the Guardian’s question: “Why do the club’s best players keep wanting to leave?”  And the answer is:

Because the Billionaire clubs offer them more money.  RVP wants a £10m signing on fee and a five year contract at £200k a week.  Total £62 million.  Walter admitted in an article recently that he’d personally take it if on offer to him.  So would I, although if it included working for bankers, the Conservative Party, racists, fascists, UKIP, homophobic morons, the Glazers, or anyone with the surname Murdoch, I would want to ensure that I could undermine everything they were doing while simultaneously taking their money.

I don’t know why the press don’t get this.  People change jobs for money, and by and large people are not loyal.  Only a tiny percentage of the population of Britain, and probably Europe, and possibly the world, are actually loyal, when it comes down to this sort of money.  What’s loyalty ever done for me?  (Well quite a bit actually, but that’s not the point).

If it were not a case of the money, players would notice the Flamini Fallacy through which virtually every player to have left Arsenal in the last 15 years has done worse at club level with his new club than with Arsenal.   And the really clever trick within the Fallacy is that quite often these players have not only seen their own career go downhill (and Flamini’s descent over the time of his contract with Milan was so vast that at the end Milan wouldn’t offer him an extension of his contract, and he couldn’t get a job anywhere else – so he returned to Milan on a far worse contract than before) but also they have put the club they move to, in difficulties.   One might think of Hleb and Barca’s unpaid players.

Or think of Henry whose move to Barca cost them £447,000 per game he played for them.  (Incidentally my inclusion of Cesc among the Fallacy men is often questioned.  We’ll see, but coming second in a two team league after leaving Arsenal couldn’t have been exactly what he had in mind when he went).

In losing players to the Billionaire clubs Arsenal are no different from everyone else.  Where Arsenal are different, is that…

a) Arsenal lose players at an incredible profit, which is reinvested in the club.  The money has been used to build the stadium, enhance the youth programme, and bring in experienced players over the years and keep us on the coat tails of the billionaire teams themselves.  If RVP is going for £20m to Man U, that is an amazing deal for us, given his injury record, age, and instance on playing internationals.

b) Arsenal’s dealing with the buying clubs helps bring them into increasing debt – which as FFP comes to pass can’t help them one jot

c) Arsenal generally sell players who have over-performed at Arsenal and who rarely reach the heights Arsenal have gained from them – so having them moving on is invariably a good move for Arsenal and a bad move for the selling clubs

d) Arsenal invariably have replacements arranged.  Last season was an exception – but the purchase of Arteta was inspired, and the development of Oxlade Chamberlain was something to behold.   Even the unheralded loan of Beny from Chelsea was an inspiration.  In fact we came third after losing our midfield of Nasri, Cesc and Wilshere.  Not a bad survival pattern.

e) Arsenal are a leading part of the exploitation of the mindless stupidity of billionaires – which is in itself a service to humanity.  Most clubs hardly noticed last year what is happening to Spanish clubs as the billionaires lost the plot, and the local governments lost the money it put behind the clock in case of a bit of a dip in the currency markets.  The Arsenal  were there, saw where it was going, and moved in for what is probably the purchase of this transfer window.

It is sad to see previously liberal to left wing minded papers like the Guardian moving over to supporting the notion of billionaire football clubs and the unacceptable face of capitalism, combined with a total overwhelming idiotic inability to recognise that people leave their places of employment for money.  But they are, after all, journalists, and journalists tend to ignore the simple stuff.

But that is where they are, so let me spell it out for the Guardian: footballers play for money, and we have clubs in Europe who can and will pay anything for players.  That’s why they leave.  Just look at what PSG have done this summer.   Why is that so difficult to understand?

So, anyway, The Guardian joins Talk Sprot, and 606 in supporting the Anti-Arsenal agenda.  Repeat after me, “I have been supporting Arsenal for 40 years and this is the worst team I have ever seen”.   “The  season tickets waiting list has gone – they can’t give them away”.  “I’m not going to Arsenal again until Wenger leaves.”  “Spend some fucking money”, “This is OUR WORST player in the last 20 years.” (That last was actually written on this site on Friday).

Ah well Guardian writers, just remember.  In the end you are always known by the people you mix with.

———————–

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187 comments to The Anti-Arsenal (and Guardian) vision of Arsenal in the coming season

  • Neal

    You do realise that the Gruniad is aligned with the Labour party, right? And that the Liberal Party has not one single elected politician in the country?

    #justsayin

  • Barndoor Bendtner

    Very clear and factual view of the whole situation. If we were able to put our emotions and passionate support of our clubs to the side for a moment we would see the underlying strategy much clearer.

    It is difficult to ignore the tsunami of misinformation and blind ignorance poring from the media and blogs. I am with you in the belief that AFC are in a strong position to build a competitive team to beat all but the latest billionaires toy. I hope we never have to go down that route in the desperate glory hunt for silverware.

  • Paul

    Sadly the Guardian is driven by the need to create hits, and much of their journalism, particular for football, is driven by this.

    They know that Arsenal is a big draw for comments, and the anti-Arsenal line excites the masses.

    Add to this that most of their football journalists are pretty shit.

  • Chris

    Its a bit paranoid

  • Big Lebowski

    I just wish Gooners would stop worrying where RVP goes, let’s face it last season was a one off. He has spent a lot of his time at Arsenal injured, so what will change the odds are he will get a long term injury again. So I say grab the 20 mil from Manure.

  • g clarke

    as aaa go sky sports are up there plus many boggers arsenal truth and others that have arsenal in the heading and are anything but how can so much mis information and lies be put out in football with no fear of comebacks

  • Blimey – I am used to some abuse coming in after an article, but what’s just turned up looks a bit orchestrated. Just a reminder – no problem with publishing arguments against what anyone writes on Untold, but “arguments” is the key word here. Just saying that an Untold article (mine in this case) is crap doesn’t really constitute an argument, and does come under our heading of abuse. Abuse is always cut.

    And Neal I don’t quite get your point. The Guardian supported the Liberal Party at the very least since the general elections of 1910, and generally continued to do so through its mutations into today Lib Dem party.

    Yes it is now anti-Coalition, but that’s what I was trying to say.

  • Stevie E

    “I quite like the comparison of Billionaire clubs to birds of prey” – More like vultures…

  • I love when you go for it tony, I always have a good reading when I come around because you play facts.

    Thank you once again

  • Alan

    Aren’t you preaching to the converted with this article? Arsenal fans know what the press is like. The Guardian are just jumping on the “Arsenal are f**ked” bandwagon because it sells papers. Fans of Utd, Chelsea, Spuds and City like reading about it. You’re not gonna change that. Journo’s know that players are leaving to line their pockets elsewhere but headlines like ‘RvP Seeks Top Dollar’ doesn’t have the same impact as ‘RvP Attacks Arsenal Ambition’. It’s a sad reflection on society but people would rather read scandalised half-truths that the cold hard facts.

  • zdzis

    As for the accents: It’s DJ View, the last cry in box-beating.

  • roxby

    Fantastic article, could not agree more. not only are the media trying to destabalise arsenal from the outside , i also think usmanov is trying to destroy arsenal from the inside.The bankers the billionaires and their advisors cant stand the thought of a club running itself on a model of self sustainability and living within their means as it shows up their model of debt and greed and unsustainability.Let van persie go and create more debt for utd . WE ONLY LOVE THOSE WHO LOVE US! ARSENAL ARSENAL ARSENAL

  • I agree with this article. The Guardian is the best of a bad bunch and I’ve been following it for many years, but have noticed the bandwagon-mounting in recent times. As someone suggests above, journalism is these days increasingly driven by the ambition for as many website hits as possible.

    By the way, to the first commentator: the Guardian is not aligned with the Labour Party; it is historically a Liberal newspaper. At the last election they supported the Liberal Democrats. They’ll probably do the same at the next election. Not really relevent to a football blog, I know, but your remark was inaccurate.

  • goonergerry

    This article sums up where I part company with Tony Attwood-The issue is fundamental.
    Making a profit by selling our best players every year is not the reason why I support Arsenal Football club – and I know that I am not alone.
    It is only our best players who are sold.
    I dont see great profits made on the sales of Vela, Bendtner or Denilson- in fact the club cannot give these players away it seems.
    Selling Robin Van Persie is not the issue even great players become disaffected-its unfortunate.
    Selling Robin Van Persie to a direct rival is totally self defeating-because it makes them stronger as well as us weaker. Making a rival who finished last season 19 points ahead of us stronger at our expense is not my idea of a successful deal.
    I doubt whether any commercial sponsor would agree with your argument Tony.

  • Flavour

    I really love this point: c) Arsenal generally sell players who have over-performed at Arsenal and who rarely reach the heights Arsenal have gained from them – so having them moving on is invariably a good move for Arsenal and a bad move for the selling clubs

  • Jersey Gooner

    Thank you for such a refreshing article.

    The world has gone mad. The actual world went mad before the global financial crisis. And the football world continues to go mad, in the face of its own credit crunch, although billionaire owners mask its fragility.

    It will come crashing down. Ask any Irish or American homeowner who made a first purchase in the run-up to the 2008 mortgage crisis. They were trying to get a piece of the action. They thought they smelled some good old pussy. But they had there parties mixed up…and were left with homes worth half what they’d paid for them.

    Ask any Rangers fan. Or Pompey. Or Malaga. It is common sense. As plain as the nose on your face. You cannot spend more than you earn.

    If I waxed treble my wages every month, I’d soon be bankrupted. I’d never get credit again and I’d be in a hole.

    Time will tell how Abramovich or the Etihad group or any other seeming philanthropic billionaire new-age football club owner will feel in ten years. But I doubt they will continue to be happy losing hundreds of millions every season.

    The wise man builds his house upon the sand. Arsene is that wise man. Even Arsenal fans have been blinded by the billionaire dazzle. ‘We have to pay the wages,’ Gooner mates have told me. ‘We have to balance the books’, is my answer. It’s simple economics which we all have to live by.

    I want a new sports car (or even a feckin car would be nice). But I can’t afford one. My fit bird might have her head turned by some flashy kent offering her a ride in his Aston Martin. Well, she isn’t worth it. There’ll be another bird come along I’ll chat up. And I’ll relive the good times all over again.

    What Arsene Wenger is doing, the way he is keeping his head, while all others (even many Gooners), are losing there’s, is remarkable. He is a visionary. A living legend. The inspiration of our world class stadium.

    And what’s more, the great youth players we’re developing in our world class academy, they’ll be our men, my son!

  • Gerry Lennon

    I think Paul is on the right track. If it wasn’t for those that read the AAA sites, which according to ‘Arsenal News Now’, are invariably ‘the most read’? then they wouldn’t get so mny hits?
    The problem lies within our own fanbase, who must be pretty low on intellect not to realise the harm they do to the club ‘that they have supported for 20 years’, which makes it somewhat surprising they would head for the Guardian site? I guess they are just so starved of bsd news about Arsenal they’ll go anywhere?
    Perhaps, the promise that this season is offering, they will be a dwindling band of malcontents that fade away like shadows in the sunshine?

  • Gerry Lennon

    Specsavers anyone – If I am not missing a’s I am substituting s’s doh!

  • Mike

    A newspaper is a newspaper is a newspaper. They all hate us so I don’t read them. People said we’d be mid-table after Vieira left; and again after Henry left; and again after Cesc left. To be quite honest, I’d rather be without RVP than any of those three. And as you say we’ve may some stunning acquisitions this summer.

    And you actually omitted (f) from your list. When they play under an incredibly skillful manager they perform to their best. When playing for any manager with less ability than AW they don’t perform to their best………..hence they will never perform to their best at any other club. A big club with a big cheque book does not equal the best manager. Hence the apparent underpeformance having left AFC. Simples.

  • bob

    Tony,
    Whatever else I say below, I mostly applaud you for calling out the Guardian for its deplorable anti-Arsenal direction, and hope that readers/visitors here continue to track and expose its wrecking ball mendacity when it comes to Arsene/Arsenal and those from Mancunia. However, the Manchester Guardian football department is not the Guardian as a whole. Nor did this offending depatrment “suddenly” join the AAA. Indeed, as Untold Media and writer/commenters like me have stated for a year running now – in these very comments and in lead articles, known as Untold Media – there is an identifiable core of writers there that have helped whip up the anti-Arsenal/Arsene wave.

    This core (and not to forget its constant drip-drip of anti-AFC snarkiness in its real-time Match Day reports) consists of two graybeards Richard Williams, Paul Wilson and their fledgling lapdog, the wannabee David Hytner. An unholy trinity. Rather than sudden, their anti-Arsenal animus has continued from last summer, when they were prominent among the tsunami of the Arsene Out venom that poured forth 24×7 in the mainstream media. I agree that their “one” so-called pro-Arsenal jorno – named Amy Lawrence – is in an uncomfortable position. This was shown by some even-handed articles last year, but nothing as clear cut as being pro-Arsenal, and understandably, in that cesspool of anti-AFC testosterone. She has been neutralized and marginalized when it comes to the Arsenal Beat(down) there.

    (In fairness, while Guardian Football as a whole has chosen AFC to come in fourth this season, it does mean that someone(s) in their stable – perhaps Amy Lawrence among them – have counterbalanced votes that would have put us out of the top four. She also states, in passing, in her video analysis – too little and too late – that perhaps Arsene Wenger has not been given the credit he deserved for last season’s third place finish.)

    For whatever reason(s), you do not the name the offending jornos (nor provide links to the articles). Imo, this matters both for greater accuracy, and to avoid slating the Guardian as a whole, unless you wish to. Do you discount/forget that the non-football Guardian has been THE LEAD paper in slating the Murdoch media empire – the underwriters of NOTW, Sky, and Sun, and other Arsenal-bashers? While I surely (at least) share your outrage at this turn against Arsenal, it did not just “suddenly” start this pre-season. Alas, it continues full throttle into the renewed march of the Rednose XX. That, imo, is still the wet-dream wish of the senior members of Guadian Football and, perhaps, where their financial bread is also buttered.

  • Tralfamadorean

    What a top article … well conceived and written Tony.

    I am however struggling somewhat with the description of The Guardian as a ” left-leaning – middle-class intellectual paper”. I’ll agree on its status as “middle class” and if presented as a direct comparison with other examples of its breed, concede the “intellectual”. But I tend, through experience, to mistrust every word that they produce – this, of course, renders the winnowing of these rags to level of an gut wrenching tedium!!!

    I think it is also worth remembering that the lowly status embraced by the readers and writers of these pages means that these amounts of money, and more importantly perhaps the degree if financial independence it can fabricate, are nothing more than Sun headlines shimmering just beyond our vision. For the Exvan the man and his ilk it may only represent a few more glittering nick-nacks with which to decorate the wind strewn spores of their fungoid celebrity.

    Keep up the good work…

    john

  • Tralfamadorean

    What a top article … well conceived and written Tony.

    I am however struggling somewhat with the description of The Guardian as a ” left-leaning – middle-class intellectual paper”. I’ll agree on its status as “middle class” and if presented as a direct comparison with other examples of its breed, concede the “intellectual”. But I tend, through experience, to mistrust every word that they produce – this, of course, renders the winnowing of these rags to a level of gut wrenching tedium!!!

    I think it is also worth remembering that the lowly status embraced by the readers and writers of these pages means that these amounts of money, and more importantly perhaps the degree if financial independence it can fabricate, are nothing more than Sun headlines shimmering just beyond our vision. For the Exvan the man and his ilk it may only represent a few more glittering nick-nacks with which to decorate the wind strewn spores of their fungoid celebrity.

    Keep up the good work…

    john

  • Sav from Australia

    Lol @ Jersey Gooner for the fit bird metaphor. Nice one.

  • Amy

    Hi Tony,

    Apologies if this is a double post, as I wrote something earlier but it doesn’t appear to have made it onto the comments. In a nutshell, I just wanted to make the point that although I think the media as a whole is increasingly sensationalist and negative these days, I can’t agree with your sentiment that the Guardian has an Anti Arsenal Agenda. There are supporters of other clubs who find it equally difficult to accept criticism of their club, but that does not mean anyone has an agenda. They might have strong opinions, and fans are absolutely entitled not to agree with them, but I can only speak as I find and I don’t believe any of my colleagues at the Guardian or the Observer are pushing a premeditated angle.

    The person who wrote the preview you examine here watches Arsenal often. He is neither a fan nor an enemy of the club but does assess it with an honest eye. Of course you are welcome to take a different tack.

    I presume you are referring to me when you say the following:

    “Indeed the Guardian is also known for having at least one pro-Arsenal journalist on its books, and to me she has looked extremely uncomfortable not to say illogical, putting out the new Anti-Wenger line.”

    Feel free to call me illogical if you wish but I am not uncomfortable and I don’t have an anti-Wenger line.

    Obviously I hope you and your readers enjoy the season immensely.

    Amy

  • bob

    “If RVP is going for £20m to Man U, that is an amazing deal for us, given his injury record, age, and instance on playing internationals.”
    Imo, your words provide cover for an act of short-term fiscal gain which delights the bean counters but is injurious to AFC football. We can afford RVP in the coffers. We cannot afford on the pitch to give RVP to Manure and thereby gift them with the TOP TWO scorers in the EPL. Nor can we afford to give him to Citeh and continue the road trod by Clichy, Nasri, Adebayor, etc., to the delight and connivance of Patrick Veira (for one). Or would we be bankrupting them too?

    Is the 20M meant to pay off the stadium debt? Incur the early repayment penalty? Just yesterday you wrote that it’s no one’s business to know when it will finally be paid off. Well, like I wrote back, it’s one thing to keep our competitors from knowing exactly when we will be debt free; it is quite another thing, however, for fans to have to shut up or go away puzzled over whether we can afford to keep RVP when met, often, with the mantra that “remember there’s the stadium debt to repay.” Is this 20M bonanza meant to hasten the day when the stadium debt is repaid? Is this knowable?

    We can afford to keep RVP if only because he will play somewhere at or near form, enough to get us deep into this year’s CL and again into next year’s CL. As many well understand, that is more value than the 20M expense that you look at in isolation and call a fantastic piece of business. I don’t think that fans should so readily take leave of their senses and act like this faux short-term business coup is actually going to benefit us on the pitch. We have the money and/or can afford to keep RVP. To say fuck off to his predatory agent/advisor Darren Damian Dein, and to put full stop to his turning the head of Alex Song. Plus un gran chingate (fuck usted) to Barca of Qatar, for their chronic on-demand tapping-up that it – with Dein’s connivance – is currently doing. (When will you call that out?) All this would be well worth the money, even in money terms, and the 20M windfall that you advocate that we all should be looking forward to IF RVP goes, is, imo, an illusion. It’s little gain for less return.

  • bob

    Tralfamadorean,
    Do you approve of phone hacking? If not, do you not see (or have you not read) the Guardian (that is non-football majority of the Gaurdian) lead role in exposing and pressing that scandal? To lump that in with the rest of the rags – like the Sun, NOTW, and the rest – is to fail to see the difference. Why you don’t/can’t/won’t see that difference is either willful and possibly interesting.

  • Spartan, a black coat labrador

    Only an idiot would find a reason to abuse this great man Tony or this great blog. I don’t get the English politics bits with me being South African and all, but this is a great article in general. Suddenly I feel better about RvP leaving (or staying?). As for the press, I like to read the negative stuff as well, It makes me love the Arsenal even more. I have noticed though that some of the previously AAA blogs are starting to change their tune, maybe Gooners are finally realising that the world is against us and we only have each other for support…. or maybe it’s just the Luca-Santi-Giroud feel good factor.

  • Greencard USA

    Great insights and argument Tony! The Guardian is not just jumping on the bandwagon to claim hits; over the past years it has veered to the right and refuses to address questions that are obvious. It has set any social principle aside and now has joined the tin-pots in trading in information as a commodity. Noise, clamour, and sensational negativity presides over commonsense and wisdom. I gave up reading the Guardian football page on Arsenal a long time ago – I don’t need to upset my equilibrium through my own actions.

  • Ade Abanikanda

    Excellent article as always Tony. From hoping that RVP would do a Rooney, i now find myself hoping that he does get that move to United for 20m- anything to exacerbate their financial woes is to be encouraged. Slightly off topic, i just came across the gem below at ‘goal.com’. It is apparently the opinion of a Stoke City supporter, explaining his dislike of Arsenal FC. He spurts-

    ‘Has to be Arsenal. Everything that is wrong with English football is summed up at that club. A club that appears to have no regard for how it treats its fans in terms of ticket prices in this current economy, a team that appears to have no appetite for developing the talent of English players, a team that appears to pay no particular credence to the gentlemanly laws that prevent feigning contact and one that will not give any credit to another when they are well beaten’

    And here was i thinking hypocrisy is only the prerogative of Nigerian politicians!

  • bob

    goonergerry,
    We have differed on key points before, but I am completely in lock step with your sound reasons for being a fan rather than counting beans. It is insane to give your rivals the rope to hang you with, especially in the name of a fantasy of bankrupting them with the transaction. Winning on the pitch – especially when it is affordable – is within reach this season. Giving RVP to either of our top two opponents is to pull back from that threshold. This 20M is not needed (there’s a penalty for early stadium debt retirement); and it is more than compensated for the CL-participation that keeping RVP for us and from Manure will help to bring about. (Especially when there’s no accountability for how that 20M is going to be spent, if it is going to be spent. After all, what happens on the books is a business secret.)

  • Mick

    Bob is right.
    Why strengthen our navy with three new battleships but then gift our state of the art aircraft carrier to the enemy. If as a result we get bombed out of the top four £20m will be scant consolation. An absolutely crazy decision if it goes through, especially at such a cut price. I am not sure I would sell to Manure at any price.

  • bob

    “(Incidentally my inclusion of Cesc among the Fallacy men is often questioned. We’ll see, but coming second in a two team league after leaving Arsenal couldn’t have been exactly what he had in mind when he went).”

    Tony,
    Yes, a second place finish. But do you know how many cups Barfa of Qatar did win last season? Are you actually concluding that this somehow validates the below-market crap deal that was reached for our loss/his traitorous departure from AFC? Do you really think that Arsene himself wanted Cesc to leave, let alone at 20M, and whether that amount has been even repaid on whatever schedule? There are reasons that some of us “question” your position on this transaction. I look forward to your analysis of it, rather than leaving it to Mr. Wenger as you’ve advocated. In fact, I think that – until Arsene’s memoirs come out – the Board would not leave this to Mr. Wenger. And I think that, in any case, Silent Stan’s fast flight to London last summer was, in part, meant to NOT leave it to Mr. Wenger. To avoid all this and suggest that his departure will soon be redeemed by the Flamini Fallacy is not based on an analysis of Cesc’s departure.

  • Jersey Gooner

    Cheers Sav. I’m in Oz at the minute too. It’s like a home away from home, only much hotter and much better.

    Sad to be so far away from Arsenal though.

    I cannot wait for the season to kick off.

    We will rise again.

    35m for Podolski Giroud and Cazorla? That was enough to buy us Andy Carroll.

    Arsene still knows.

    Keep the faith.

  • Laundryender

    The Guardian is in the shit

    It was once a great newspaper. But is currently loosing £30,000,000 a yeara, more redundancies on the way.

    Its agenda is not anti-arsenal but self-preservation, , it has a wonderful editor that was almost solely responsible for the phone hacking of scum tabloid Journos coming to light. On those grounds alone I will cut it some slack, it remains a shining beacon of investigative and determined journalism in the UK.

    The back pages are simply, well the back pages!!

  • bob

    Tony,
    It’s not just that yes, players want to move on for money, and the press fail to recognize that. Sorry, but you have ignored that section of the media and its punditry that want RVP to move house. The media, including the Guardian, is largely on the side of RVP leaving. In fact, most of the Guardian online has been in evidence as lending headline sympathy to Don Fergus’ demand that AFC behave itself and give him up to him. Do you no see this?

  • bob

    Laundryender,
    Have to agree with you there. There’s the great Guardian (phone hacking) and the shite Manchester Guardian football department (kerching), both under the same roof. I knew it was in the financial crapper, but where did you get the 30M/year loss figure? And, yes, its general editor is world-class.

  • Don

    Players who have won the CL since leaving Arsenal: Anelka Henry Van Bronkhurst Silvinho and Cole
    Players who have won league titles since they left Arsenal Anelka Henry Van Bronkhurst Silvinho Cole Vieira Flamini Toure Clichy and Nasri

    So virtually every player who has left has done worse at club level than they would at Arsenal.So all those players would have won the CL with Arsenal had they stayed with us as well as all the league titles we have won in the last 8 years

    I cant believe why they left

  • Sambe

    Its not only the “Guardian” that is AAA.Other main stream media outfit as well hates Arsenal or Wenger. The Reason… I don’t really know. Its just recently that a wind of change has started to blow in regards to the perception of the media about Arsenal. Goal.com’s Wayne Veysey has written some good stuff about Arsenal these few days..

  • bob

    Tony,
    My last bit on Barfa. Are you that sure that the Qatar Foundation – having displaced Unicef on their jersey – is not in fact saving Barfa’s otherwise precarious financial/bank-riddled position? This is a wild-card – perhaps a billionaire wild-card – that I have not seen factored into your (or anyone’s) previous analysis of how Spain’s bank failures will likely impact Barfa. Perhaps there are analyses in the Spanish press and Spanish Gooners like Horacio will be able to convey this?

  • Jersey Gooner

    An eloquent and email Amy. You make your point is graceful and persuasive.

    Any journo worth their salt should be balanced and not have an agenda.

    Comment pieces are a bit different, but they should still be accurate, balanced and contemporaneous.

    I find it hard to believe how little credit Wenger gets for his David-like struggle and an army of billionaire Goliaths.

    But I am certain history will judge him as a legend.

    Keep the faith.

  • I have to say I thought Amy’s reply to my comments on the Guardian was very measured.

  • Am i missing something here, what purpose or gain is there in the guardian being Anti-Arsenal, i listened to the interview on line seemed fair and balanced to me. Seems to me Tony your the one with the biased one sided view.

  • deejay

    goonergerry. you are right up to a point… paying 20mill for RVP is 20 less they have to spend on another player who may well be less likely to get injured (RVP is due a few months on the sidelines.) selling RVP is only beneficial if we spend that on other player/s. What suprises me is who in the right mind would want to swop London for manchester… must be for the money!

  • deejay

    Don. do you think that if we had billionaire owners prepared to pay hundreds of millions on players and 150 to 250k salaries, they would have left?

  • bob

    Tony, Ade Abanikanda,
    In financial terms alone, Manure’s getting RVP will return far more to them than it will cost them: including, a boost to their stupid IPO on the NY Stock Exchange, a big step toward winning the league, a big step toward a return to success in the CL, a huge plus in the merchandising/sponsorship area, a two-headed icon to cement their profile as the flagship of Barclay’s PL, etc. The loss to our merchandising/sponsorship efforts, prospects for winning (yes winning) the league, prospects for advancing far into the CL and clinching next year’s position there, and providing continued obeisance to the strategic whim$ of Darren Damien Dein and his Arsenal assets (RVP and Alex Song). This is not worth the fantastic sum of 20M which, I’d argue, would cost us far more than it would cost Manure – who would gain a windfall with him worth well beyond 20M.

  • Don

    deejay

    I am not saying they would have left.But the column said virtually every Arsenal player who had left had achieved less than they would have at Arsenal.Which is wrong.

  • Laundryender

    @Bob

    read it last week in the Telegraph, and having dug up a link i was incorrect (not for the first time) losses were £129m

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/mediatechnologyandtelecoms/media/9467093/Guardian-publisher-sees-operating-losses-double-to-129m.html

  • @Blacksheep63

    As ever a thoughtful and passionate entry Tony, much of which I agree with wholeheartedly. I have some sympathy with Bob’s view however, that we should separate the Gruaniad from its sports coverage. I would go further: the paper has an overall political stance (which is generally anti-tory but certainly centrist) but allows (indeed welcomes) comment from a much wider political demographic. So you right, left and mad cap views in there. Frankly I’m no longer interested in what any of the mainstream press say about football because its invariably old news by the time it goes to print. Twitter, blogs and other forms of social media are probably more important now. So I expect the likes of Hynter etc are simply sh*t stirring to gain ‘hits’ (as was suggested).
    As for being a selling club or lacking direction or indeed not being able to compete with the oil money, I think we will see how the Arsenal way pans out over the next few seasons. I’m quietly optimistic that the sensible policy of not over extending ourselves and picking up quality when we can will bear fruit. We may not win the league every year but then when did we? (the 30s yes I know folks!)

  • bob

    Amy,
    I have respected – and openly so – your balanced pieces last summer/fall and your mentioning – too little, too late – that perhaps Arsene deserved credit for last seasons third place finish. Apart from paying the bills, which I do respect, I cannot for the life of me and my offspring see how you can justify the body of work of Williams, Wilson and, especially, David Hytner – and especially last summer/fall’s incessant drum beating (lost the plot, game passed him by, photos of suffering, another blow, etc. etc.) against Arsene and this club at NOT having an Anti Arsenal Agenda. Amy, I’ve been a fan of yours for whatever it’s worth to you, but to perfume that unholy trinity as not having an agenda – or, let’s say, not exercising an agenda – that is destructive and meant to be destructive toward Arsenal’s prospects is self-deluding or worse.

  • Damien Luu

    @Don: Great avatar. Suits you like hell. Why haven’t you followed him/them? Oh, I know, because they mostly sat on the bench and people, including you, usually don’t like to watch the bench, right? But still, I’ll thank you if you follow them (shoo-shoo)

    @All: We all hope that someday every club will live and compete fairly within their own means, but maybe that will affect Arsenal’s profit a little bit. I mean without those stupid billionair clubs, we surely won’t make such profits on the transfer market, right? So maybe we should thank them for what they have been doing until now 😉

  • The font

    Fantastic tony you really understand the workings of arsenal football club we finished 3rd last year after losing nasri fabregas and wilshere 100 million worth of midfield talent we managed to buy one of the best young talents in Europe a.o.c. By the time we have sold Rvp and song and a few second tier players the arrival of giroud podolski and Santiago and the return of wilshere and diaby we may have got stronger and possibly made a profitt which will go towards the purchase of sahin or m .vila again making us stronger as a life long arsenal supporter I know will will always be criticised for our brilliant style of play our ability to stand on our own two feet in the business world but hey that’s the price you have to pay for supporting the best club in the world selling Rvp to utd is a hard one but if he wants to go and it’s the only offer we have then we have no choice making him stay could upset the the spirit in the squad

  • bob

    The font,
    Are we to get “stronger” by ourselves, in a vacuum? Or do we have competitors? Does giving Manure the top two scorers in the EPL (in Rooney & RVP) and a massive marketing gift (in Rooney & RVP) make us stronger? Or does giving them the R&R boyz make them stronger against us both on and off the pitch?

  • Philip

    Couldn’t agree with you more Tony. 20 million+ for RVP at 29 is a better deal than Henry to Barcelona

    Only wish ManU were in La Liga!

  • Bob, the selling of RVP has several elements in it.

    a) One is that he wants to go
    b) One is that we could use the money to buy someone who will be better than him over the next four years
    c) One is that whoever buys him will be £20m or so lighter

    Will that lot make us stronger?

    About a) there is nothing we can do.

    About b) that makes us stronger

    About c) that makes us stronger

  • The font

    Bob I understand what your saying but what’s the solution we keep r.v.p and he upsets the rest of the squad or sell him and use the money to buy someone of equal standing if u.t.d do not get r.v.p they will splash out on an alternative maybe spending £30 million plus they have the power to buy who they want if it was the case that if they did not get r.v.p they could not have anybody else I would agree and say do not sell him

  • The font

    We must remember that the system we played last year would have benefited r.v.p u.t.d rewarded berbetov £30 million buy sticking him on the bench r.v.p. has had a brilliant 18 months but IMHO there are strikers out there who are of equal ability and are 3/4 years younger for the same money

  • Simon

    hey Tony, I’m an Arsenal supporting Conservative voting Untold visiting Times reader… you ok I still drop by your site?

  • bob

    Tony, The Font,
    Ok, he wants to go – but he is a cynical pragamatist. He’ll make the best, for him, if he’s made to stay, however long. (And if he decides, then, not to re-sign.) Tevez and Balotelli had vicious break-ups with Mancini. Yet both contribute massively in the last weeks to a Championship; and both are back on side this year, with Tevez back to form. Mancini held firm, said no; and ffs, so should we. We should call the player/agent bluff – they cannot afford a bad performance or injury by RVP. This is hardball, and a self-respecting club should play it. And we can afford to.

    You assume he’ll disrupt the squad. I assume he’ll be professional at worst.

    Who, pray, has equal standing for 20M? Specifically who? Mirallas is signing for Everton.

    And yes, RVP was injured and will be 30. But he didn’t play and therefore doesn’t have as much wear and tear on his body as everyone who says, Oh, but he’ll be 30, keeps repeating like it’s a death sentence. Hello?

    Are Podolski, Grioud and your new purported better than RVP replacement going to yield 37 (total) goals?

    And, financially, who’s going to make up RVP’s value-added dimension to the AFC brand, its marketing and sponsorship prospects? Are we better off without him there? Do you think the sponsors will think so? Would you?

    Imo, your two stands appear short-sighted and near reckless.

  • bennydevito

    Tony,

    I can’t work out what it is about you and your sheer bloody minded refusal to acknowledge the real truth here – RVP categorically stated in said statement it has nothing to do with money. Our best players want to WIN TROPHIES and as the last 7 years prove that’s not going to happen here – especially if we keep selling our best players to our rivals. Why are you so unwilling to accept this and persist with your paranoid conspiracy theories?

  • FinnGooner

    Great article Tony. Problem for me was that it did not improve my mood… I ended up reading a Finnish newspapers EPL issue and now I’m feeling insulted and really angry. Why? Let me translate small part of that thing.
    “Biggest change at training center in London Colney was change of asisstant manger Pat Rice to Steve Bould from Acadamy. Rice was loved character, but he had nothing to give for Arsenal anymore. Wenger never delegated his jobs to him. Now manager has realized he needs help…”
    So no mentioning that Pat Rice retired or it was RICE’s idea to leave his post not Arsenals.
    Oh and I love how it ends “Now it finally happens Arsenal will drop out from champions League”.

    If I would work somewhere else I would send them message asking if it is company’s policy that retiring means same as being useless or is that just writers own opinion or if (s)he is idiot who don’t care about facts. (calling your customers idiots might not be good customer service).

    I’m really looking forward to next May when we once again prove those writes wrong.

  • Livi B

    Fantastic Tony, as always.

    Very Soon FFP will expose the ludicrousness.It will come cause FIFA need to keep control themselves.

    We sit and wait!!!

  • bob

    p.s. Oh, and just noticed how you put this, Tony: we’ll buy better than RVP “over the next four years”. That’s evidence-free. 4 years? We’re on the cusp of a championship drive this year. Ask Podolski (he thinks so!) That’s 5M per year you’d have AFC set aside for this bet. Do you have a guarantee that it will actually be spent on that equivalent purchase in the next four years? In a worse economy? That’s a bet too. Mine is that it won’t be put to that exact purpose. Not that fans like us (presumably) will ever get to know this from an AFC/accountancy source which denies mere fans any hint of when we’ll be free of the stadium debt. (Are you saying here that we’ll actually be free of that debt in 4 years time?)

  • The font

    Bob Short sighted and near reckless is someone who presumes he knows better than an institution called arsenal football club someone who does not way up both arguments I gave you the acknowledgement that I could see your point although short sighted .you Then to presume that v.persi would not be upset at not getting £ 220k per week and would happily slot back into a club he openly said he wanted to leave

  • bob

    bennydevito,
    The players also contribute massively to this self-fulfilling prophesy. Can you actually say with a straight face that a team with Cesc, Nasri and RVP would not have one a single trophy last season? Perhaps you should go shout at them, not Tony Attwood; or better still, at their agent/advisors – starting with Darren Damian Dein, the Lesser – for asset-stripping our dreams. If these players stayed, would we not be on the doorstep of the almighty Trophy that you crave. If they were capable of thinking collectively, as a teammate, rather than individually, you would have your precious trophy. You’ve gone blind on this score.

  • bob

    The font,
    RVP cannot afford to be “injured” or play poorly, and expect to attract a big offer from another team – either in January, or next summer. He has to give us value, or he will lose massive value for he and his agent in the next two windows. Of course he won’t be happy; but he cannot afford to play unhappy. Do the calculus. We have a much stronger position if you want to think about it. Do I know better than AFC? No. But do you think that AFC is a monolith? That there is not this very argument going on right now within AFC? People are making their arguments and calculations on all sides and it is perfectly reasonable to advocate and disagree. I do think that your position is short-sighted, going for 20M and going blind to the combined pitch success and marketing success that holding on to RVP could bring. He doesn’t have to be happy to be productive. And everything he’s shown, until this, shows he is quite capable of being completely professional – and it will be in his interests to continue to be professional on our behalf, if he stays, because it is in his behalf as well. And if we do very well, then he may well decide that his future does lie here. The market hasn’t been overly kind to him this window; and, at a year older (and a sub-par performance), it will be less kind. And he and his agent and AFC know this. I don’t better; but I do know this much.

  • The font

    Bennydevito the first rule about a true supporter is it is not paramount to win a trophy it is nice to win a trophy but it’s paramount to enjoy and love unconditionally win or lose

  • bennydevito

    Bob,

    Why are you having a dig at me? I wasn’t shouting at Tony I was genuinely asking what I feel is a valid question. I have masses of respect for Tony and some of the very articulate and informative pieces he writes it just I feel he loses touch a little when he allows himself to get drawn into the whole AAA thing, I find it extremely irritating and nonsensical.

  • Edda

    Seems like most of the Premier League Previews are made in a hurry and just repeat the old stories of the summer. Most of them have the two Manchester Clubs on top and Chelsea on third, but i really cannot see any good arguments why ??? I would like those reviewers to look at the squads, position and squad depth and argue why Manchester United have a better chance of winning than Arsenal or Chelsea ? Like the squads stand right now i think both Arsenal and Chelsea are better off than Man Utd. City may have the best squad attacking wise, but they dont have better depth in defence than us (Arsenal) but they have so many attacking options that i would hold them as favourited ahead of us and Chelsea with United in 4th. BUT this is AS IT STANDS, and it means we MUST NOT FOR WHATEVER PRICE sell RVP to Manchester United, that will push us down from 2nd and down to 4th and that would make RVP right in his statement that we are not an ambitious club!!! We should keep RVP and put him in the reserves if possible just to point out how ambitious we are!!!

  • bob

    Edda,
    Amen! Keep RVP and dare and be able to win!

  • Stroller

    bob
    “He doesn’t have to be happy to be productive”. Maybe, but equally he could range from being disinterested through to disruptive. What about his relationship with the other players? If you accept that he is leaving to win trophies then the direct implication is that he doesn’t think his teamates are good enough to do it, while he is. Hardly good for morale is it? If you’re playing in a team that you don’t think has a chance you’re not going to be very motivated are you, other than perhaps playing for yourself.

    Sure you can talk about showing ambition and making statements but if the spirit isn’t there in the team for whatever reason then it will all come to nothing.

  • bjtgooner

    Tony, interesting article and I agree that the Guardian has moved its footballing position to surprisingly support the AAA/Usmanov viewpoint. It has become a paper not worth buying.

    However, I must agree with bob regarding the non sale of RVP. Yes the money would be fine, but when the consequence is helping Rednose win the league – then screw the money. Lets remember Rednose and Riley had the Invincibles kicked out of their unbeaten streak – lets not help scum like that. If RVP doesn’t like it he can play for the reserves or sit on the bench! Oh, and Dein the Lesser would have to wait another year for his pay off.

  • The font

    Bjtgooner cut your nose despite your face comes to mind as I said earlier they will spend

    £20/£30/£40mill on another striker we might as well take the money and reinvest that means were keeping going forward rather than festering in self denial

  • Stroller

    Well, all this about him staying is academic now. The club is reporting that terms have been agreed with ManU.

  • Goona Gal

    I am not happy at all with this transfer at all. I am angry that the club is doing business with Man U. The club needs to come out and say how much the transfer was and the reasons behind it. Did RVP beg to leave? Refuse to play for us again? I thought RVP would bottle returning to the Emirates. I am disgusted that we sold to Man U as this will galvanse their fans and squad. I would rather RVP stewed in his own juices!

  • Goona Gal

    Anything under £20m is a simple joke.

  • Edda

    OK, its done. I wont sulk too much over it life goes on, BUT there will be alot of pressure on AW and the team now, can we finnish above Man Utd even if we sold our best player to them ? U better have a plan for this AW!

  • Wooby

    Mixed feelings about the transfer of RVP to ManUre.

    On the one hand, I am with Bob and others who cannot stand that we have just possibly helped ManUre (I say possibly because RVP’s history suggests he is likely to suffer an injury or two).

    On the other hand, if Wenger now use the proceeds to acquire another striker/CF who can score, who cares what the player’s name is?

    It will be very interesting to observe the RefReviews this coming season now that we have finally sold a player to SAF. Will Howard Webb and others finally award a penalty to us at the Emirates?

  • Stevie E

    I’m hearing AW has said when asked about replacing RvP “we already have”

  • Wooby

    @Stevie E: my worst fears are then realized.

    This means Song is next too. No point in believing another word Wenger says about potential sale of Arsenal players. I recognize it is part of maintaining leverage over a potential buyer but it still smarts to know Wenger is not beyond giving meaningless denials.

  • Goona Gal

    There is much more pressure on the squad now, so why do it? I do think we have a good squad even without RVP though.

  • Stroller

    This simply means that we start with the same chorus of doom for Arsenal, glory for everyone else, much as in previous seasons. The Spuds and their followers will be justifying how they are bound to finish above us just like they have since the middle ages. No doubt our No. 1 supporter and major shareholder from Russia will have another pop, Peirs Morgan will throw a Twitter wobbly and Myles Palmer will blame Wenger for everything despite being a big RVP critic until last season. The Guardian, Mail, Sun etc will fill several pages (now the Olympics are over) with detailed reasons for loving ManU and hating Arsenal.

    The way I see it is that we’ve lost one top player and brought 3 in, so I’m not getting the razor out yet.

  • iniez

    Question is, was this a board move? We could have been more patient and waited until someone else bid. Who knows. Bollocks

  • Elvis Senthil

    In the world of electronics, there is a saying: ‘ There are no bad products; Only products with a bad price ‘, i.e almost any product will sell as long as the price is right.

    Every footballer has a usefulness to a team, in terms of stats and intangibles. Also no football player is irreplaceable, especially with teams like Arsenal.

    @BennyDevito: “RVP has categorically stated … ” – Just show me one footballer who accepted his need to move for pecuniary reasons, ever!!!

    The prick, with all the “Respect” for fans, club and AW, chose to put a comment on the web. He didn’t even have the balls to say it himself on camera! Probably told his agent to put the prepared statement up .

    Ppl expect Star players and marquee signings. WTF
    I’d be prouder to support a team without over-sized cunts .

    The Team makes the player, not the other way round . We all know RvP’s record with the All-Star National team!

  • Ong Bing

    He’s gone. Anyone who want to boo, can boo him now.

    Good, one problem solved.
    Forward!

  • Cameron Wolfe

    @bennydevito
    If RVP was that desperate to leave arsenal to go to a club that will give him trophies.
    Why didn’t he buy out the last year of his arsenal contract?
    Since 2004 Arsenal have paid him @30m in wages alone.
    He’s going to be on the same wage as Rooney @200k per week?
    He was asking for @200k plus a 10m resigning on fee. Isn’t it possible that’s why he asked for that much knowing Arsenal wouldn’t pay it?
    It’s all very well coming out last Month telling the world that he wouldn’t be extending his contract.
    Of course that wasn’t at all linked with telling every top club that he was available.
    At a price
    As Tony said Man.U will be worse of financially for it.
    22m plus wages. @63m over the next four years.
    Good luck with that.
    At least now it’s done and we can all move on.

  • Ong Bing

    Poldi+Giroud+Poldi = about 40
    RvP = 20++
    Vela = 4
    Ozyakup = ?

    If we can sell Bendie about 8, it means we only use less than 10. And we don’t need to adjust the wages structure because of RvP.

    I think it was a good move, well done Arsene.
    We will be ok this year.

  • Phoenix Gunner

    Well, bugger.

    The cycle continues.

    I am in complete agreement with Bob – 20mm does not solve the much deeper issue here. We should have played hardball.

  • bob

    Self-Deception is the worst trait. AFC have just given ManUre the two top scorers of the EPL last season. At a time when we can afford it. You can perfume it and excuse it here all you want, but this is a betrayal of the AFC Legacy – not to sell to Manure, to your top competitors, to have self-respect enough not to be strong-armed by contract breakers – and a complete capitulation to mendacious predators, short terms bean counters, and a quick fix to the bottom line. What a disgrace. This is a loss on the pitch; and a loss in marketing/sponsorship potential; and a gift to SIR Fungucide of the first step on his road to the Rednose XX; and a massive boost to Manure’s marketing and sponsorship and IPO flotation on the NY Stock Exchange. This is rotten and there will be a flight to the exits. It is an abject failure. How many players, in fact, were brought on with the promise or reasonable expectation to be playing with RVP? I’m sure that will leak. RVP is a Rotten Vomitorious Perfidy from now for eternity. This short-term money-driven scandal tarnishes the badge. Any you can have all the tribal circling of wagons you can muster here, but the stench of this deal will not disappear overnight. And spare us the “no player is bigger than the team” mantra. Would you want to sponsor a side like this that continues to lose 3 out of 4 of its last Captains to the SAME AGENT. For shame!

  • bob

    “As Tony said Man.U will be worse of financially for it.
    22m plus wages. @63m over the next four years. Good luck with that.”
    Cameron Wolfe,
    To put it in your fiscal terms, your comment is an enabler of this financial insanity. This will cost us sponsorship and marketing as it will enhance Manure’s sponsorship and marketing, bounce its IPO price, give them a double-icon as the face of the EPL, give Manure its victory in the EPL to our detriment (which has a price tag), cost us TV appearances, undermine our prospects in the current and future CL, give license to ANYONE else who plots an early defection by breaking their contract, and signals that we’re open to a permanent firesale. And you go on crowing about us pushing Manure toward bankruptcy. Total bollocks and fantasy in the oh-so-tricky wool we’ve pulled over their eyes in this deal. Completely Orwellian logic.

  • bob

    Stroller,
    Eyes wide shut.

  • bob

    Oh, and I hope all who endorse, feign indifference or excuse this deal will be very happy to now have had your dress rehearsal for Alex Song’s coming departure to the tune of the Barca Tippy-Tap. That has already been signaled and endorsed, with humor of course, in these parts.

  • Wooby

    @Bob, you have correctly pointed out the part of the transfer that is really tough to take. How, oh how, can one really justify dealing with one’s sworn, mortal enemy? The lack of self-respect in such a move is what stings me.

  • bob

    Tony,
    Have you begun the don’t worry, we’ve got a 4 year/20M watch on this deal, as yet? The Flamini Curse is now in full effect, of course.

  • Goona Gal

    Yep, Robin Van Persie is a disloyal, egotistical parasite. I am not too sure about how that karma thing works & I am not interested in the machinations of it all, I just wish it gets him.

  • iniez

    Goona gal,
    When does frimmy get fit again?

  • Goona Gal

    Theo can sign on now or shuffle off too. I am irritated by all this now.

    The club needs to give us fans a decent statement on all this crap!

  • bob

    Cheers, Wooby. It’s all about “doing the business early” this season, you see. Oh, we’ve learned our lesson from last season? Really? Or did the decision makers at AFC how to better manipulate the fan base into another fire sale – to chill out the suckers who can be counted on to pay the bills and then go on to make excuses for this craven lot who surely know best.

  • Goona Gal

    @ iniez – not for a while. RVP now gets the extra protection from the refs now too!

  • WalterBroeckx

    Just imagine that RVP fails on his medical? In the last 10 days I have known 3 transfers to Russia being stopped at the medical.

  • bob

    Goona Gal,
    If karma there is, and I pray with you in my hair shirt, surely there’s another Glass Ankle in the cosmic works. Held to ransom, you see. No choice in Cesc, in Rotten Van Pigsty, in Song, in any player/agent that wants out no matter what the contract. No choice? Did Mancini (never a role model) at least say NO to Tevez? NO to Balotelli? And to what end: a sqeaky bum championship to which they both contributed materially. At least this man stood his ground against being strong-armed by punks and rapacious agents. What did AFC do?

  • Claver

    Well. Le bOss has lost it. I hope the ManU fans give him what he deserves for being such a money-lover when he goes to the Old Toilet.

    Song, Vermaelen, Wilshere, Chamberlain and Walcott are all going. Probably Gibbs too. The ones that get injured especially Diaby.

    What a waste of time supporting Arsenal. Wenger has found his sweet spot of mediocrity. He calls it FFP.

  • Goona Gal

    If I thought I had a chance of getting a blood soaked pigs head through the turnstiles at the Emirates, I would fling one in the dirty parasite’s direction!

  • Goona Gal

    @ Claver – jog on son.

  • bob

    What grounds do we now have to analyze/complain. AFC has sold Manure the rope to hang us with. Pulled out the rug from under its own fanbase. (And, yes, let the perfumed excuses about having unconditional love if you’re a real gooner begin, as it will, rather soon. It’s your time, in’it?)

  • Gooner.NZ

    Crikey – the season has not begun and some of you have already decided to throw the baby out with the bath water. RVP is one player. He had a whole team of players around him that were set up to service him and him alone up front. Is he going to the same environment at Man U????
    Man U now have the 2 top scorers from last season. Correct me if I am wrong, but they are not the 2 top scorers for this season – IT HASN’T HAPPENED YET!
    If AFC had wanted to keep RVP, they would have. Quite clearly he does not fit into the 4 year plan which is why they did not value him enough to pay a massive 4 year contract for an ageing player.
    Lets just wish the team of players that do want to play for AFC the best of luck for the upcoming season. Maybe we have the Golden boot for this season already in our midst.

  • Mick

    I am incensed with this monumental betrayal, not just with Van Persie but with our club as well. How could the custodians of AFC be so stupid. Please let us know who is responsible for this catastrophic decision.
    When Manure are proclaimed as champions next May I hope we get awarded an ‘assist’, because make no bones about it, we have just gifted the Premier League title to them on a plate.

  • TheGerald

    Instead of predicting doom and gloom can we rather focus on the fact that the squad Wenger has put together is good enough to challenge for league honours

  • RobL

    @ Mick, really? VP needs a strong Midfield to generate his assists – not sure United have this quality and mobility at the moment. + he has to pass a medical.

  • createstrain

    absolutely unbelievable.

    next time i see my manure mate i wont hear the last of it. and my reply will be……………….

    errrr…….um…..shrug…sigh.

    cant say im completely gutted for many reasons but making them stronger and giving them such a huge boost in marketing is a bit silly. but still it feels surreal. i cant even image what it would be like for a 30yr old dutch londoner to move to manchester and be the new boy among rio, rooney, nani, giggs, scholes. i wonder if his wife will arrange new parties for them all.

    on the surface it looks real bad but ive doubted wenger before and lost so i’ll reserve judgment for now.

    this season is gonna go offffff!!!! cant bloody wait.
    step forward giroooo, step forward mr rocket foot aka the pod.

    lock n load lads, lock and bloody load.

  • createstrain

    the question thats bugging me is the question that should be bugging manure fans.

    we didnt NEED to sell him.

  • bob

    Gooner.NZ
    He’s 29. He’s played less because of injuries, so he’s not as shop-worn as others of that age. And FFS, we just had the Golden Boot and just sold it off for an unnecessary 20M that will cost us more on the pitch plus at the marketing/sponsorship till. Now your offering up maybes and wishes that the next Golden Boot will surprise us from within. I have a bridge to sell you from NZ to Mancunia. Interested?

  • marin

    Bob…. doesn’t matter. u just don’t sell ur best playrs to old rivals. not really our rivals but

  • Stuart

    Bob & all,

    I mentioned this on another Untold thread.

    In a few months time we’ll probably all be on here saying how it was a shrewd bit of business selling the player who had seen his best days and is constantly getting injured at Man Utd.

    Do you also see Fergie creating the same strategy as Wenger has where the whole team will be built and trained to serve RVP the perfect goal scoring opportunity? I know I dont, and am sure Rooney has other ideas.

  • Stuart

    createstrain
    Just tell your mate to come back to you when RVP plays his next full season.

  • Goona Gal

    @ Mick – I still think we can compete, but do think the club need to put out a respectable statement regarding the transfer fee, did red nose negotiate it down? Also the club needs to state whether RVP was ever made to account for his statement as well as stating whether they thought he would be poison in the dressing room.

    Man C & Chelsea work tirelessly to buy any and every player and then loan them out to prevent clubs like Arsenal getting a sniff, Man U work hard to undermine our transfer negotiations and what do AFC do? They sell! To ManUre!

  • createstrain

    im sure vanbition was wearing one of those gps contraptions in koln. maybe it was confirming summit.

  • Goona Gal

    @ Marin, I will assume you are talking to me, I don’t quite follow your point/question.

  • createstrain

    indeed stuart, indeed.

  • zuer

    He’s gone. Nothing to moan about. Let just forget him. But still, anything below 20m is a joke. Wenger seems to have known all along about rvp intent and has already made plans about life after him.. by selling rvp to manure, Wenger have better make sure we are not sitting below manure in the tables at the end of the season..

    What is the latest take on Sahin and Mirallas. Are they coming or not? Does mirallas really on the verge of joining everton? Hope to have them on board? And what about song and walcott? Too many question without any answer..

  • bob

    TheGerald,
    Don’t go all “doom and gloom” on those who are outraged by the money-driveness of this rotten deal. Nothing else but ice in the veins money. Your positivity is based on 3 promising buys with no EPL experience. None. And you countenance giving your worst enemy an attack with the EPL’s two top scorers from last season?
    And – as distasteful and opportunistic as they are – do you soberly think we match up against this duo? It is realistic to point out that we are not in a bubble, but a competition; and we have just given away the massive Advantage that keeping Van Pigsty could have provided along with these 3 — any number of which 3 might have come here to play with him – ever consider the potential impact of that? At very the edge of an advantage on the pitch, we squander this quartet it for 20M, which amount would readily have been made up by CL performances and other cups and stronger marketing/sponsorship opportunity. You want to whoosh this away by labeling it doom and gloom? Ok, you did. But these cries come out of loving AFC, and you’d do well to recognize it, before tarring it with “doom and gloom” as if it were nothing but negativity run amok for the sake of being negative. I wish for a championship side too, now. But I recognize that wish as wishful thinking.

  • zuer

    Tony, do you think this is a major cock-ups to arsenal or is it another plot and conspiracy by Wenger himself.. hmm..

  • bob

    Stuart,
    Ok, so now it’s going to be RVP versus Rooney and the whole deal will backfire? Implosion will save us? Do you think that Don Fungus is really that much of a football fool? He might be that much of a prick, and well worth lambasting for squeezing out every advantage; but that man does know how to put together an attack and we gave it to him. Did we not want to deprive him of Rednose XX? Is he calling off Pulis and Riley and the refshite that has come at us? The fact is that we’ve GIFTED him two strikers with nearly 70 goals last season; and you’re celestially calm about how karma will surely rescue us?

  • Goona Gal

    @ bob – Just my impression, but you seem to having a pop at anyone that thinks we can compete this season. Why are you taking that so personally?

  • zuer

    Dogface, she must have been regular visitor to untold 😀 .. hey, how about giving the armband and main striker role to Chamakh 😀 ..

  • Shard

    bob..

    in 20 years of Premiership football, only Shearer, Henry and Hasselbaink did better the season after winning the golden boot..The average reduction in goals from the previous season was 9 (14 in the Abramovich era) {STATS FROM 7AMKICKOFF}

    I havent checked but I bet none of those goalscorers who did better were 29 years old at the time. Sure, it strengthens ManU. But the reason they’ve spent so much isn’t for the player. It’s for the name..the perception that they aren’t an ailing club propped up by past glories and fighting through fair means and foul to keep their status at the top. Arsenal, as we know, don;t do ‘names’. We only care about the value the player brings to the team. Van Persie, quite absolutely clearly, did not bring as much value as ManU offered us. Simple decision (in business terms).. sell..

    Would we have preferred to sell him abroad. Sure. But to sell, you need buyers, and those didn;t materialise. If we actually got 24m for him. I’d say that’s a very good deal. Let them worry anytime he goes down playing in a meaningless friendly. We have an altogether more exciting squad than last season. RVP was always going. So, he’s rather wear a tablecoth than a proper shirt, but hey, to each his own. He pissed away his legacy, and at some point he;ll regret it. But we won’t. We’re the Arsenal, and we’ll always be here (not something most clubs can say these days)

  • Goona Gal

    @ Shard – thanks for that post, as it made me laugh. I am not the only one then that think’s Man U’s shirt looks like cheap polyester gingham inspired tablecloth!

    If £24m is the price, then I feel moderately better as I think the Man U fans have got their new Micheal Owen (and I am talking last year’s model not pre Madrid). I don’t think he will score 30 goals this year for them, but then I didn’t think he would score more than 20 for us. There is more to this sale than performances on the pitch though.

  • bob

    Van Persie, quite absolutely clearly, did not bring as much value as ManU offered us.
    Shard,
    I don’t think it’s absolutely clear, and not simple; and this for the reasons I’ve spelled out the last three days. We really don’t know the reasons, nor whose reasons are what, nor if there was an internal debate inside the club, etc. rather than clarity or unanimity. I’m tapped out right now, and have to reconsider a lot. Wishing you well, Cheers.

  • Shard

    Interesting from the BBC..Does anyone know of David Ornstein’s credentials.. Anti-Arsenal or not?

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/19179833

  • alex

    When ever a player leave us we got grrrr angry.Rightly so !
    In our case has become to familiar talented players to leave us when their contract is ending or about to end.
    Why is so hard for the club that to ask them to renew a bit early so that there will be enough time to decide for the club whether to sell or keep the player in question ?
    While asking this question thankfully i did not witness a player that we sold to anyone below its value.In fact we made good money out of them.
    To me it seems the club is acting deliberately on this matter in order to reduce the debits that we got.
    Again it is a brilliant strategy to rip the riches.
    How far the fan can take it specially when our talisman player is sold to Manu our arch-rival.
    I dont like one bit of it.
    I will buy my new shirt surely …..with no name no number.

  • Shard

    bob

    Cheers..Wishing you well too.

    Just a mention though. I am sure there was debate inside the club. That’s healthy. Even a divergence of views doesn’t always equate disharmony. All that matters is that once a decision is taken, everyone at the club accepts it and pulls in the same direction. And I think we are doing that. There’s something positive happening at Arsenal. I can’t quite explain it..even to myself..but I’m just very optimistic about things. We’re going to throw off the shackles that have been imposed on us externally. I can feel it. I accept that is hardly going to convince anybody, but it is just what I genuinely feel. I’m excited about the season.

  • zuer

    Agreed with Shard. Highly unlikely for him to repeat what he had done last year especially in any colours other than arsenal’s. He ain’t getting the same service he is getting here with arsenal. Furthermore, he’s been poor during euro playing in system that is unlike arsenal.

    Also agree on points made by Bob that is something extra to manure in term of marketing and pleasing their fan. oh and their ipo’s too.

    At the end of day its just a simple business deals. RVP want MORE MONEY and he want to left. Arsenal prepare for life without him but wont sell him cheaply. Ferguson being denied from every signing he want and is losing face. So he then target the restless Robbing Van Purse-y. Since Manure is the only genuine suitors willing to pay the transfer fee arsenal demand, then its a done deal.

    p.s. I’m gonna choke if the fee is well below 20m.. only then will I feel betrayed by AW and the BOD.. and then i will be mad, REALLY MAD and join you guys who’s already burning with anger.. until both clubs declare the price, I’ll just stay calm and sane…

  • none

    Reading http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/19179833 there are some interesting points.

    “It is understood Arsenal were willing to make Van Persie their highest-ever paid player, but never actually offered him a new contract.” Really? You dont think that Arsene sat with him over a number of meetings saying this is what we what to offer you?

    “The 29-year-old will meet with United in the next 48 hours to discuss personal terms and have a medical.” So hes leaving Arsenal because we didnt offer him a contract, but yet joining Man U, despite the fact that they havent offered him a contract?

    I think this a bad deal for Arsenal. In the past 18 months Robin has matured to a World Class player and his leaving has weakened Arsenal and allowed another EPL team to grow stronger. However, as a club we are dammed if we sell him now and dammed if we left it till Jan/July we he could have just walked to a club of his choosing. Im guessing that Arsenal were hoping that either the summer signings would change his mind or that Juve could have come close to the £24m that we are supposedly getting for him. Sadly with the match fixing in Italy and Man City being unable to offload any of their strikers it really tied our hands.

    There are still risks to this deal. Man U are getting a player that has EPL/CL experience, but has only been able to stay match fit for the last 18 months. In addition, very few players in the EPL that win the golden boot go on to perform any where near that level the following season (see http://www.7amkickoff.com/2012/robin-van-persie-and-the-golden-parachute/). There is also the potential that installing Robin as the main striker will lead to further issues within Man U.

    For me personally Im extremely disappointed for a variety of reasons.
    1. Robin was an amazing player to watch and I thought that last season he really did bring the team together.
    2. We are losing our captain, again. The armband is clearly cursed.
    3. The various statements (lies) from both him and his family that he was happy at the club and wanted to stay.
    4. We are strengthening Man U.

    For those that say that Song wont really be a loose to the team, I would suggest having a look at http://www.7amkickoff.com/2012/arsenal-2011-2012-top-ten-10-alex-song/ its a long read but Alex Song’s contribution to Arsenal for both the EPL and CL is amazing.

    Sorry to side track your post Tony, but it would be very interesting to read Amy’s thoughts on what the Ref Reviews/Walter/Dogface have published here on UA and what the reviews at Debatable Decisions, http://www.debatabledecisions.com/ both imply. That there is a bias from the EPL referee for (and against) certain clubs.

    It was also be great to see Anne back and contrasting the back pages that we see in the UK with the media coverage that the EPL gets worldwide to see if again there was a difference in what the match journalists are writing and that there was a bias in the reporting.

  • createstrain

    indeed, 24m=great stuff, 20m=slight discomfort, anything below and we’ve been had. again.

  • bjtgooner

    I was out of town for a few hours & have just heard the news – very disappointing, I found it hard to believe that RVP would lower himself to manure level.

    @The font

    Ref your 7.35pm post – your comment seems a bit supercilious.

  • Stuart

    @Goona Gal re 11.21

    I don’t think he will score 30 goals, I doubt he will play 30 games going by his track record.

    Bob,

    My main point is that RVP wont find a style of play at Man Utd which is adapted perfectly to fit around him to allow him to flourish.

  • zuer

    Shard, that article by David Ornstein, is it legit? If its true, 24mill is good business for arsenal..

  • The font

    Are some of you having a laugh do you actually believe arsenal football club is weaker for selling r.v.p and buying poldy Santiago giroud and having wilshere diaby sagna coming back with at least one more signing coming in oh my god were in crises Were in such a state we might not finish in the top two in the best league in the world (with the mega rich the best league of all time ) oh well we will just have to settle for our 16 th season in the champs league What a shock 29 year old prefers £220 k Per WEEK over £80k per WEEk says had to take increase to cover medical expensives all 10 year olds in north London could not see this coming and have said there off to toys are us

  • bjtgooner

    @Shard

    Ref your post @ 11.09pm – well said – a good balanced view.

  • bob

    Thanks, for removing my posting on Amy. I didn’t know her double-edged headline meant so much to you.

  • none

    @ Shard

    It took me ages to write up my comments and they were held in moderation for a while as well. So you beat me to those links, my apologies I wasnt intending to copy what you had already posted. I will refresh next time before posting.

    @ Tony/Walter, please feel free to delete my posts

  • alex

    THE FONT
    Do you think they are going to pay him £220.000 to this 29 year old traitor ?
    He knows and they knows that they are the only party interested in him .There must be a serious negotiation i believe unless settled early.

    in any case if they disagree on his personal terms what will happen ?is he coming back to us ?

  • The font

    I am 53 years old and way 18 stone I broke my leg losing 2 inches of bone racing an ex tottenham player through Swindon town centre 5 years ago the ex spud was 32 at the time I still think the team that supported van persi last year would have got me 20 goals. As a lone striker last year buy the way I was leading the spud with 5 yards to go when I hit a concrete bench

  • Goona Gal

    @ Stuart – agreed. Though the footballing geriatric duo can pick a pass and Cleverly is a decent midfielder too. So having him on the pitch will help the Man U squad no end, not to mention he can provide assists too for rooney, but would be a bigger benefit for Welbeck. That said I’ve believed for ages that he only really has 2 yrs tops at the top or near top of his game, possibly less as he won’t be managed the same at Man U and will be asked to play with injections rather than heal.

    The Man U fans will turn on him if he plays badly because they want a top class midfielder and/or a younger striker.

  • The font

    Alex no van persi won’t be coming back the day after he put out his statement to leave ferguson was quoted as saying van persi is coming to u.t.d (look back at the blogs). He always know he was going there

  • Jayjay

    He’s finally off!
    Lets judge who’s right or wrong in May…….!

  • The font

    I’m pissed and I am going to bed now when paddy left it hurt when fab left. It was expected when Henry left it hurt but was the beginning of a new era when overmars and petit left I was glad of the money when nic left I was shocked but not upset £32million were any of these players less important than r.v.p I think not as Gloria once said we will survive

  • The font

    By the way van persi has said he is moving all his family to Manchester EXCEPT his nan as he is buying the house next to Wayne’s

  • bjtgooner

    If the transfer fee is £24m, does anyone know how much the agent gets and just who is responsible for paying the agent. Thanks.

  • asd

    Everyone who sees this has a good deal is a very naive person(did not have a better word)
    Do you guys think Wilshere is think 24m for a 29 yr old player is good business?
    Great players want to play with other great players and win trophies but you would get neither at arsenal.
    I bet this would dawn on Tony when Wilshere and AOC move to united/chelsea.

  • bob

    “It’s been years since Arsenal sold a player to Manchester United,” he said. “I think it was Frank Stapleton [in 1981].
    “They were always our massive rivals and I know we sold a lot of players to Manchester City but Manchester United were always our rivals and we didn’t want to help them.” – RAY PARLOUR

    THIS IS WHAT A LEGACY SOUNDS LIKE.

  • allezkev

    Players come, players go, that’s football.
    Robin leaving isn’t a suprise, just disappointing that he’s joining a club teetering on the edge of terminal decline.

    Really looking forward to seeing the boys starting the campaign against Sunderland this weekend.
    When the ref blows his whistle i won’t give RVP a seconds thought.

    Gotta say, i think Arsenal will finish above both ManUtd & Chelski…
    Man City will be a tough nut to crack, but our boys have a great chance to upset the applecart…

  • Goona Gal

    @ asd – I think your quite thick (sorry did not have a better word).

  • Goona Gal

    @ allezkev – exactly, Man U are on the edge and the fanbase are questioning Fergie big time, he personally needed this sale to go through. The RVP sale might now of kept the dogs at bay, which really annoys me.

  • allezkev

    Having enjoyed the performance of Lukasz Podolski as he revisited his old stadium in Koln, i can’t help but get a buzz of anticipation at the thought of how he is gonna rip up opposition defences…
    Gervinho also looked as if he’s settled into the team and could be a sensation next season…

  • allezkev

    GG, i can’t help but be very calm about this deal.
    I hate selling to ManUtd, but they were the only one’s to come up with the required financial package…
    To me, Fergie is in the middle of a crumbling empire.
    And i think he knows it.
    He needed RVP, big time, that’s why he paid over the odds for a 29 year old injury prone striker, with one year left on his deal after his one and only decent season…

    GG Keep Calm and Carry On…. 😉

  • asd

    **Thinking

  • Goona Gal

    @ asd – I would leave [thinking] alone, it’s not a strength of your’s. Concentrate on blinking and breathing in and out…small steps..build up slowly.

  • asd

    @GG
    Yeah i’m really very thick but smart to know that you never sell to your rival..
    PS: Do you think the players see it as good business by Arsenal or a chance to prove themselves so they can get their own pay day somewhere else?

  • allezkev

    asd, i can see your point about not selling to a rival.

    How about not letting a £24 million player join your rivals on a Bosman in 12 months time…??

  • Goona Gal

    @ Allezkev – I am slightly more mellow than before. Besides, every cloud has a silver lining and all that…maybe this deal sends moaning Mancini into total meltdown. The next time we demand exhorberant money for a player – they better pay up.

  • asd

    Goona Gal
    August 16, 2012 at 12:58 am
    @ asd – I would leave [thinking] alone, it’s not a strength of your’s. Concentrate on blinking and breathing in and out…small steps..build up slowly
    ————————————————–
    OOps you must be a spud cos you actually reason like them…

  • asd

    allezkev
    August 16, 2012 at 1:02 am
    asd, i can see your point about not selling to a rival.

    How about not letting a £24 million player join your rivals on a Bosman in 12 months time…??

    ————————————————-
    Thats a chance we should have taken. He might have signed a new deal…

  • allezkev

    GG, ah Mankini, now there is an example of how children behave if you spoil them and never tell them no..!
    You can picture him stamping his feet like a 5 year old when the Oil money isn’t forthcoming…
    How many players does that fraud need?

  • Goona Gal

    @ Asd – there is healthy competition for places, one man’s loss is another man’s gain. Not to mention that Giroud & Podolski both see Arsenal as a massive opportunity that they won’t want to screw up. Giroud has come up the hard way through lige 1, Podolski has his bad Bayern experience in the back of his mind. Read or watch the interview that Fabinaski gave recently, you want all of the squad to be on their toes as they can and will be swapped out if they play badly.

  • allezkev

    Yeah asd, i do agree up to a point, but that’s a £24 million risk your asking the club to take…
    And despite what many of us may feel about the paucity of investment from above, the fact is, the club couldn’t afford to take that risk…

  • Adam

    Question for you all, Is this the most Arsenal has received for a 29 year young bloke?????
    When Henry left he didn’t fetch us this sort of price. these boys really are walking winning lottery tickets.
    It just surprises me that people are pissed at the fact, Arsene has a knack of cashing them in.
    RVP and Fergie may well be successful this coming season, good for them. they have their way of going about things and Arsenal has theirs.
    £30 mil for Rio, £25mil for carrick, £30mil for Rooney, £18mil for de gea, £15mil for Kagawa, £15mil for Young, £20mil for Berbatov, £20mil for Hargreaves, Nani and Anderson cost a fortune. Probably the best bit of business Man Utd have completed in the last decade has been the sale of Ronaldo or bringing in Van der sar on the cheap. We are seeing huge obscene amounts of money spent on buying pro footballers contracts out, It’s nuts all the way even when Arsenal buys players for millions it’s just crazy money.

  • Goona Gal

    @ allezkev – yes, Mancini is definately a desperate man that actually knows himself he is a fraud and rightly lives in fear of the tap on the shoulder and the finger directing him towards the exit. His accelarated aging process will go up a notch – if that is even possible. I wonder if he exploded at Marwood today and threatened to quit again. I reckon Marwood will go if they don’t win all their games once the window closes and there are no new big name signings. He’s a readymade scapegoat.

  • allezkev

    Adam, those are some pretty impressive figures you quoted there.
    How do you think they compare with, say, Kolo Toure £700,000, Gael Clichy £250,000, Van Persie £2.75m, Manu Adebayor £7m, Koscielny £10m, Sagna £8m…..

  • asd

    @GG
    You miss the point..
    Imagine Diaby has a stand out injury free year, what next? He releases a statement then the club sells him for whatever reason?
    I have stated it on this site before that i blame Wenger for all this. He should treat the players as paid employees and not his children. Anyone not pulling his weight should be dropped asap. No more sentiments.

  • allezkev

    GG, it makes me smile.
    He has a massive squad of top players, about time he learnt how to manage them.
    How many more does he want or need….

  • asd

    When does the club put its foot down and let the players know who gives them their daily bread?

  • Goona Gal

    @ Adam – The Man U stock thingy took 2yrs to sort out and Arsenal 2(working days) to swipe a 1/3 of the profits. RVP could yet be their Andy Carroll or Torres. Here’s to hoping anyway.

  • Goona Gal

    @ asd – I repeat, focus on the breathing and blinking….build up slowly. Your 1:28 post was embarassing. Take your time, lie down, the internet will not break if you leave it alone for a while.

  • allezkev

    asd, quite a few of us think that Arsene indulges his players a little too much.
    But that’s a small price to pay mate.
    Don’t forget, many of the quality players we’ve enjoyed over the Wenger years, wouldn’t have played for us if he hadn’t been the manager…

  • Adam

    Allezkev, It’s a fantasy world out there with these sports clubs able and willing to spend so much money on contracts.
    Although I must admit, I cannot think of another way of going about player trading without banning players from moving whilst under contract. We are talking about sums of money that can build new schools that will over there life time benefit hundreds of thousands of children. Or build hospitals that will save more lives.

  • Adam

    @Goona gal, It does remind me of the latest series on Pest Control.

  • Goona Gal

    @ allezkev – I think that is the gautlet thrown down his way. Mancini has been asked to manage. Not only that, manage a bunch of very well paid primadonnas! Fine when things are going well, bad, in fact very bad when things go wrong. I don’t think the players have much respect for him actually, let’s see how that pans out.

  • Goona Gal

    @ allezkev – can you elaborate what you mean when you say ‘quite a few of us’ think that AW indulges his players too much?

  • allezkev

    Adam, i know mate, but you can’t, or shouldn’t, compare like with like….
    It’s just way it is….
    Why should a film star be paid millions for pretending to be someone else.
    Or a tennis/golf player get millions for playing their sport….
    And don’t get me started on lawyers….

  • asd

    @GG
    Why was it embarrassing? Cos i blamed your dear leader? You should have been born in North Korea.

    @allez
    Remember Cesc “Wenger is like a father to me” and RVP “I respect Arsene”…. FFS even Denilson put out a statement about wanting to and win trophies

  • Goona Gal

    @ asd – I’ve just seen that you’ve called me a Spud, not a bad retort from you really. Keep’em coming.

  • Goona Gal

    @ asd, yes, yes – now take me to yours!haha.

  • allezkev

    GG, i don’t mean on her., When i say ‘us’ i’m talking about Arsenal fans in general,and as you know Arsenal fans come in all shapes and sizes…
    We can’t all agree on everything, can we GG…
    But i promise not to use ‘us’ in future.
    OK…

  • Goona Gal

    @ allezkev – you can use whatever turn or phrase you like, I thought you were refering to a distinct group or set of fans that you personally knew of that feel the same way about AW’s man management that’s all.

    I can’t say I disagree..on the agreeing thing…and am happy to have anything on a sliding scale of polite discussion to slanging match if I feel like it. I just don’t give a #beep#!

  • allezkev

    Sorry if it came across in an agressive manner GG, it certainly wasn’t meant that way….
    I don’t go on any blog to have a slanging match.
    If i fancied a verbal ‘tear-up’ there’s good old LG…
    But i’d much rather prefer a friendly chat about ‘our’ club…
    Peace…

  • Goona Gal

    @ allezkev – No need to apologise to me, but peace anyway.