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A total genius or a ****i** turnip

Tomorrow or the next day it will be known.    25 hours ago (that is around 7am UK time on Monday) I made my wholesome and exciting prediction that a certain Russian was on his way to us.   At that moment virtually no one else was running the story, so I felt rather good (or rather stupid).

In fact I also felt rather neat because I gave my reasons as to why it looked like Arshavin was on his way, and those reasons seemed fairly logical (at least for 7am).

Sadly if you take your selection of news from Goonernews you might have missed my stunningly eloquent outpouring since they didn’t run it, but Arsenal News did (links to both on the right column of the site if you go to www.blog.emiratesstadium.info)

Anyway, the news this morning is

a) He’s on his way (BBC Radio 5)

b) He’s just scuppered the deal because his contract says that if the club don’t get a certain fee for him, he has to pay the difference.  Mr A has now asked for the difference to be made up in salary.  (Guardian – but I may have got a bit of that wrong – it seems such a tortuous load of meandering whatnot.)

But do we need him?  Picking on another of my rambling themes of yesterday the Lord Wenger (clearly a regular reader of these pages) said something along the lines that we didn’t need Arshavin because Rosicky is on the way back.    Well he might have said that – or not, the reporting isn’t 100% on the issue.   Anyway Rosicky is running about a bit, which is good.

My point is, that with everyone fit I still think we have one hell of a team.  I think Denilson is a great defensive midfielder who can do the job that Gilberto did for us, and do it just as well.   As for the rest of the midfield, Ramsey will become a great player, Jack obviously is going to be a sensation and a half, and Nasri looks better and better as time goes by.   (Remembering Pires’ first season, and how far above that Nasri is already, I have very high hopes).

Diaby shines amazingly in patches – and clearly the ability is all there, it is just the consistency we need (I thought the game changed for us when he came on, on Sunday) and although Song has not come as far as I would have hoped this year, he is developing at a pace, and by next season could be a very important member of the team.  And then there’s Eboue, whose position is clearly not understood by many fans.   On Sunday night I heard one person say on Radio 5 “even Wenger doesn’t believe in Eboue – otherwise he wouldn’t substitute him each week”.   Actually Pires rarely played beyond 65 minutes either, and Wenger believed totally in Pires).

All of which means that the midfield is already getting crowded, and there is still Theo, Rosicky and Cesc to fit in somewhere.   Given a decent round of fitness then next season we are going to see major rotation – and I still haven’t added Fran Merida.

Much the same looks to be happening with the forwards.  There’s the regular three we use at present, plus Carlos Vela, who to me seems to have changed games at the Ems of late.   And a certain number 9.   And lurking behind that lot is Simpson.   And Theo can play in the middle a bit too.

(Actually what’s the odds in five years for Theo as the centre forward and Jack as the number 10?)

I could go on, but out of humanity towards anyone who might still be reading, I will curtail my comments to the issue of left back.  At Cardiff it looked as if we had our regular left back playing the game – assured, confident, and he is presumably still behind Traore as the reserve.

This is why I remain optimistic.   Whether I have called Arshavin right or wrong doesn’t matter of course (just me having a laugh) but in the end, I wonder whether his joining us will matter or not anyway.

God it looks cold out there this morning.

(c) Tony Attwood Master of the BlogWaves 2009.

PS:  Fortunes told, just cross me hand with silver.  Roll up roll up.

15 comments to A total genius or a ****i** turnip

  • Davi

    Finally a mention for fran merida!!!
    hes gna be at least as good as jack, who’s gna be an arsenal great im sure
    We’ve been goin on about our youngsters for ages but they really are good, the best ones have yet to come of age
    my feelings on arshavin i suppose depend on rosicky
    if he could come back and play a part in most games then id say we dont need the russian, but if wer gna win anything this season id say we need one of them and playing most weeks

  • Frichie

    I like your thinking, and while i share you optimism in our youngsters, i think AA will add exactly what we need in games. AA is in the same league as a Hleb, rosicky, pires, so to be able to mix any one of those with a midfield or Nasri, Walcott, Cesc or Denilson Ramsey Eboue, we will have a player that adds more to the team and will improve midfield and attack.

  • pete

    everyone needs to get off eboues back, those claming he dived against cardiff should look at a replay it clearly shows contact being made and then eboue stumbled, denilson, eboue, bendtner can do nothing right for some arsenal fans, i say some because its these little cockroaches who proclaim to be gooners come out from nowhere when things arent going right then just let rip at these players, denilsons is the best defensive mid in the prem, stats can back that up, bendtner has found his form lately, scoring a few goals, and just a note, the boy is only 21, and finally on eboue, a player that gives his all everytime and on his day can galvanise the team with his bursting and darting runs, he hasnt had the best of seasons but for the first 5 to 7 games of this season, he was our best player along with denilson. the injury set him back and hes finding his form again and it dont help when you lot dissing the guy everygame, you lot need to fix up and get behind the team because all this whining and whinging about our players is becoming a joke now seriously

  • great piece as always..keep goin Tony, love your positive thinking, as i mentioned yesterday, i didnt think that we need AA, but there is one thing: Arsene knows!…anyway would love to see Arsenals no. 7 again. get well Tomas!

  • johnny_mu_4ever

    Good deal from wenger..a very good player..but the question is will he adapt to EPL..will he be able to adjust to the type of football Arsenal plays..But all his performances really shows he up to this challenge..I admit when Arsenal are on top form they produce an exciting type of football a pleaasure to watch.opponents cant live the their pace its scary sometimes

  • jetha seth

    Good Morning goons! Now Arshavin time? Why have we hunted a player so long knowing he has such riduculous wage demands? If he is already on silly money why did he leave if it wasnt to play for a bigger club? Then again after being chased so long he is entitled to make sure he gets paid right because they obviously want his services. Its a signing which if completed will ruffle a few feathers in the dressing room and may also see contracts stalling due to higher wage demands. This is why the other contracts should of been tied up already. You dont have to be a world class football manager to know that priority one is keeping your best players. Nowadays you cant let contracts run down before extending them (Flamini anyone). RVP, Walcott and other players need to be resigned with some urgency before the countdown to off season begins. Now as much as eboue is not liked I dont want to see him or any other players leave this season or in the summer lets send the right messages across to everyone. If our entire squad is fit we are a premiership contender among other competitions easily. This midfielder we were linked with sounds impressive the DM he would compliment our squad nicely. As for Rosicky training again im happy for the guy because he must of thought he would never do even that again after seeing Eduardo come back to fitness before him. 1 day at a time #7 1 day at a time soon you will be launching canons from 20+ yards again.

  • realist

    denilson is statisitcally speaking our best player for this season.idiots have even blamed him for cesc’s poor season ( shows a lack of football knowledge). what are the differnces between our team now and the invincibles?. ok, the invincibles season we won 26 games drew 12 scored 73 and coneeded 26. we won with 90 points. the differnce between 1st and second place was 11 points. and 1st and fourth was 30!. that shows a massive gap. last season manchester united won with 87 points. the gap between them and second place was 2 points. and the gap between them and 4th was 11 points. in the invincible season are goals for per game was 1.9 and against was 1.4. last season was better with the same goals for at 1.9 but the against was even lower then the invincible season at 0.8 goals conceeded per game. ( and people complain about our defence). so no less then 4 seasons after the invincbles ( all trophy less) the differnce isnt that great on paper. the real obvious problem is our competition have gotten better and better. 83 points secured second place for 04/05 season and 05/07 but last season that only got you 3rd. this season we have averaged 1.6 goals a game (0.3 differnce to invincible season) and goals against is 1.09 (a diffence of 0.31 goals conceeded better then the invincible season). so there it tells you our defence is the same or better then the invincible season. our attack isnt quite as potent ( only slightly). so can we lay off denilson ? can we stop blaming him?. can we stop going on about the need for a dm when i have made it quiet obvious we dont need 1. its amazing just how compettive and tight it is in the premier league from today since the invincibles. i didnt realise just how significant this factor was.

  • gunner5

    Any claims that the Arshavin deal could collapse because of wage demands are absolute nonsense. While clubs haggle over a transfer fee, the agent is in dialogue with the buying club telling them exactly what his client expects should a fee be agreed. There should never be any surprise at a players wage demands as it’s common knowledge that these are known by the people who need to know. I can only assume that if a fee has been agreed then the deal will go through soon enough. If it doesn’t I wonder what excuse our board will give? On another matter, it’s interesting to see that Bolton have opened talks with Veloso for around £12m. This guy was worth £20-25m a few months ago so is he just not as good as people thought or would that price constitute a bargain? Anyone seen enough of him to know?

  • we just need arshavin- to be proud of this season.

  • BoyNextDoor

    Hi tony,

    I’m also optimistic about all things arsenal.
    But at the same time, worried a bit about how to keep all those great young players together. As you say, for example, in LB position, we have clichy who is just 23, but also traore, gibbs, and bothelho coming back from spain all 19. Then even more congestion in CM!
    Of course, lord wenger will sort this out, but i’ll be very sad to see any of them leave.

    whether AA will sign or not, I’m not that bothered to be honest.
    Just one worry about not signing AA is all the d&g merchants will get over-drive (and they are the more vocal ones than the positive ones like us I guess) and ask for lord wenger’s head at the end of the season if we don’t win anything..

    I feel so sorry for AW this season – he looks a broken man and emotionally drained.

  • SuperBobbyPires

    What in the name of all things sacred and goonerish is going on with this Arshavin transfer! Offer made, offer rejected, offer rebuffed up to 12m, Zenit consider, Zenit reject, Arsenal play hard ball, Zenit play hard ball back, Arsenal play coy, Zenit panic and reduce asking price, Arsenal stick to guns, Zenit and Arsenal agree fee, Arshavin discussing contract and wages with Arsenal, then Wenger comes out saying there is no fee agreed, the deal isn’t close and he’s not even bothered about it! I swear I’m about to lose it!! How does it take Spurs 2 days to sign both Cudicini & Chumbawumba and have it wrapped up and we take more than 3 weeks for feck sake!!

  • It takes two days for the Tiny Totts to sign a player, SuperBobby, because they are signing a drongo, and everything is done on a short term basis at that club.

    They swap managers every year, they throw players out, sign them back again – it is just a mindless game with no underlying philosophy. Say “sustainable football” to them and they won’t know what you mean.

    Most of the paper stuff about the salary and the transfer fee is just space filling by the journalists who have nothing new to say.

    And remember that the moment Arsenal are seen to waiver over a fee and give in at the last minute, the fee of every other deal will go up and up.

  • don't believe the hype

    realist you are right – some Arsenal fans are like sheep the way they keep bleating on about how we need a DM. Are they actually watching Arsenal games recently? Denilson is up there with Barry and Alonso in terms of his performances and Arsenal are much more solid in the midfield and defensively. Where we are lacking is creating and scoring goals because we have 4 creative talents out injured. Hence why Arsene is looking at a creative player, but at the same time not getting desperate because he knows we have players returning from injury who can make a difference if we can just keep our unbeaten run going a little longer.

  • NYmarcus

    Please remember that media reports on this Arshavin saga are all based on public comments made by different sources at Zenit, and sometimes Arshavin’s agent. These latest remarks come from Zenit and squarely put the blame on Arshavin, claiming that his salary demands are the obstacle. We do not know if this is true or not. To me it sounds as if they’ve suddenly come up with a sticking point in Arshavin’s contract (they’re demanding to be paid back some money he supposedly owes them by breaking his contract).

    I do believe the following:

    Ever since Arshavin started to agitate for a move to a big European league early last year, the club has declared war on him. He’s never been an easy character to deal with anyway, so relations between player and club were never great. But his public desire to play on the big stage in club football before he gets any older, and his agent’s public machinations to make that happen, made things even worse, and drove the club’s Board into a permanent vindictive mood. It’s also been made worse because he has one of Europe’s most obnoxious, difficult agents (who we’ll have to deal with if the transfer goes thru, btw).

    Their aim has always been to drag things out as long as possible, torment the player with endless negotiating games, and then finally make the bidding club cry “uncle” and just give up. They really do have it in for Arshavin. They do not need the money, they really don’t care a lot about the money. I believe that they would’ve been this difficult with ANY club, even if they were offered 40m, let alone 20m.

    I have never been convinced that Zenit went into this deal in a good faith effort to sell the player. And even if they are willing to sell, they will do their level best to drag this out to the very last millisecond of February 2nd. By which time Arsenal may well have given up.

    This is why I don’t blame AW or Gazidis or the Board in this transfer. Barca and Spurs also tried to negotiate last summer for Arshavin and backed off in the end, Zenit’s games made it impossible for a deal to go thru. Wenger himself said in today’s press conference that there are different, contradictory voices coming out of Zenit. I believe they deliberately set out to make this transfer saga confusing, protracted, frustrating — they keep changing their tune, moving the goalposts deliberately.

    I wish AW hadn’t tried for Arshavin at all and had tried for another good creative player (if that was his priority, as it seems to be). I’m sick and tired of Arsenal having to deal with clubs like Marseille and Zenit, instead of clubs that aren’t insane.

    As for the rest of your post Tony….yes we do have some fine talents in our squad, that has never been in doubt (not to me, anyway). Tho I will have to offer my apologies and beg to differ re Eboue — after that display at Cardiff, I’ve pretty much had enuf (and I’m not referring to the so-called diving, which was not clear at all–and the ref ignored the far more blatant dive from a Cardiff player). My main concern has always been:

    CAN WE KEEP THESE TALENTED PLAYERS TOGETHER?

    If only a few of these players get it into their heads that they’re unlikely to win a trophy soon, and big clubs come sniffing around with big money, then we’ll see more good players leave. Unlike some gooners who are incredibly complacent about winning trophies, I am painfully aware that PLAYERS WANT TO WIN TROPHIES. This is even more true of QUALITY, WORLD CLASS players, which we have in the likes of Cesc and RVP. It doesn’t matter if some gooners don’t care about winning trophies, what matters is that PLAYERS want them. It’s what they play for. If they see a trophy is less and less likely at Arsenal and they get good offers from other big clubs, they will not stay very long, period.

  • With all the back and forth between Arsenal, Zenit, Arshavin, and Wenger, it has become a topsy turvy environment. And frankly, I am over it all. This is the EPL, forget the drama, make deals, and play ball hard. That is all I’m about. As far as I’m concerned, we don’t need Arshavin that bad to put up with all the back and forth nonsense.