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October 2016
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The new signing has signed, several other options, one star leaving, and the replacement for Wenger

By Sir Hardly Anyone

In the new world of Superstition (see the previous article and do try to keep up) once the idea is set then it gets bound into the mind, and no end of logic can ever dislodge it.

So the superstition that buying expensive players before the new season brings success is one that is just believed and believed and believed, even though it has been proven over and over to be false, untrue, a pack of lies, make believe, utter tripe, and puerile nonsense.  What is true is that the odd purchase can work, but most don’t.

Here is last summer’s spend related to the league position achieved

Transfer lge pos Club Summer Spend Actual league pos
1 Manchester Airport £153,500,000 4
2 Manchester U £108,100,000 5
3 Liverpool £78,400,000 8
4 Chelsea £66,150,000 10
5 Aston Villa £54.300,000 20
6 Tottenham H £49,300,000 3
7 Newcastle United £49,250,000 18
8 Southampton £36,500,000 6
8 State Aid Utd £33,900.000 7
10 West Bromwich Albion £32,500,000 14

(For new readers Manchester C are referred to as Manchester Airport on account of the fact that they were given their stadium in return for their sponsor putting on a few new flights in and out of the airport.  WHU were given their stadium by the state and thus are known as State Aid Utd).

One might say, indeed one should say, that the spend does have a relationship with the final league position – a negative relationship.  The less you spend the higher you get.

The average league position of the top ten spenders was ninth.  Two of the top ten spenders got relegated.  Neither of the top two clubs in the league by the end of the season were in the top ten spenders’ list.  So to see this and go on and spend spend spend spend spend spend spend spend spend spend you would have to be utterly bonkers.

Indeed as people often say (misquoting Einstein en route) to fail doing something and then do it over and over again, is the sure sign of madness.

And please don’t think I fixed that table by picking out the bits that suit me – the 11th club, in case you wanted to continue down, was Sunderland.

But this is the world of mass superstition, and so it is ok to believe the bonkers.  It is ok to believe that spending lots takes you up the league, because we all know if you say something over and over and over and over and over again, IT MUST BE TRUE.

Because we are all crazy now (Slade) and what was untrue last year, and the year before and the year before and the… is going to be true this year, BECAUSE IT MUST BE TRUE.

Because the superstition tells us it is, and it is replicated every day in all the media.

So, let us all carry as on as per last year.

1:  Not Mahrez – £42.2million Star Ready To Agree Arsenal Move, The Fans Will Like This.

Do you remember all those headlines from the bloggettas last year that said, “Not Cech” because they wanted to ratchet you into their little sites?  Well now the “not Mahrez” player is Lacazette.   Lyon have offered Alexandre Lacazette a new contract to ward off Arsenal’s attempts to sign the striker, but the bloggettas tell us that we can have him if only we pay enough.

2: Oguzhan Ozyakup could make Arsenal return

He was part of their FA Youth Cup winning side of 2009 alongside the likes of Jack Wilshere and Francis Coquelin and is now at Besiktas, and won the Turkish league and is going to cost £16.8 million according to Deporte Valenciano.

3:  Arsenal are lining up a surprise £15million bid for former Manchester United defender Jonny Evans.

Arsene Wenger has apparently admitted he had lost a ‘heavyweight’ in his dressing room.   So it is Evans who joined West Brom last summer after being told he was unwanted at Very Old Trafford.  Pulis thinks he is worth £18m.  But then Pulis is a [text deleted on the grounds that it was unsanitary].

4: Valencia’s Shkodran Mustafi .

“Wenger is already under pressure from Arsenal supporters to recruit a striker”.  Oh really?  Well Arsenal are now 11/8 favourites with bookmakers to beat Chelsea (15/8) to the signing of Valencia’s Germany defender Shkodran Mustafi.

The Indy, which still tells us that Heathrow Airport is in Bournemouth and that it is a football story, say Arsenal contacted the Germany international’s agent, Ali Bulut, to discuss a move to the Premier League.

Mustafi has a £42.1m release clause in his Valencia contract, but differing reports suggest the La Liga club will allow him to leave for between £20m and £33m depending on negotiations. or if you prefer another source  £25.3m plus a further £8.4m in add-ons.

5:  Icardi

Inter Milan owner Erick Thohir has slapped (or perhaps delicately placed with much aplomb) a €60 million (£50.7 million) (sorry £54,2n) price-tag on Arsenal target Icardi.  (Sorry  £59.83m).  Best stick to the Euros.

6:  Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain

…has been tipped to join the Pep Guardiola revolution because he is not good enough.  Hang on, is that right?  He’s rubbish isn’t he (that must be right because the blogs tell me that).  [Actually his goal in the friendly the other day was rather fine donchathink?]

7:  Mario Mandzukic,

Wolfsburg and West Ham are racing racing and racing in the race to sign Mario Mandzukic, according to Tuttosport.   While according to the Metro, Juventus forward Mario Mandzukic has emerged as a target for Arsenal.

8: Bruno Peres

Arsenal are interested in signing Torino full-back Bruno Peres, 26, with the club wanting £16.9 million for the player.

9:  Eddie Howe tipped to be ‘Arsene Wenger’s successor’

The Daily Star claim that Eddie Howe is being lined up to be Arsene Wenger’s successor at the Emirates.  Since the Star has never been right about anything, this could be the moment when they finally break their duck, and their chicken and their hen.  Here’s the tale

Howe’s stock has risen after remarkably keeping Bournemouth in the Premier League while playing a good, quality brand of football.

Furthermore, his willingness to develop young players at the highest is also a trait of Howe’s that is admired by the Arsenal board, as they aim to maintain the legacy that will be left by Wenger when he departs.

10:  Ben Yedder

Arsenal have emerged as the clear front-runners to sign French striker Wissam Ben Yedder, according to BetStars.   The bookmaker places them at 5/4, ahead of Europa League Champions Sevilla at 5/2 and Premier League rivals West Ham at 9/2.   Tottenham have been placed at 8/1, while Leicester are outsiders with odds of 10/1.

But remember: the more we spend the further down the league we will go.  Not all superstitions which say the reverse of reality are true.  In fact, none are.

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16 comments to The new signing has signed, several other options, one star leaving, and the replacement for Wenger

  • Tom barry

    You are of course right that big money transfers don’t guarantee anything and many spectacularly fail. Still, over time, according to Deloittes, there is a very high correlation between success and investment in players (including wages).
    But anyway, given that arsenal so far this transfer window have spent more than most, and by the end of it may have spent with the best, why bang on about this topic?
    Reading made up transfer stories gives us something to do, so can’t be all bad

  • Leon

    I like the Jonny Evans story and hope there’s some truth in it. He’s one that Wenger has always liked, never plays badly against us and is at least as good as any central defenders that we have (Kos possibly excepted). He’s the right age and at £15/18 million could be considered great value.
    Eddie Howe is everybody’s favourite for every top job around (including England”s), so he is obviously one of the leading contenders for Arsene’s when/if he retires next season. We could do a lot worse.
    Some of these strikers we’re being linked with don’t really generate any feelings of excitement. There must be someone on our books who can do that role until Welbeck returns and possibly even beyond.

  • Polo

    This is what happen to a club who is not in a strong financial position, AC Milan was once the powerhouse of European football now it’s struggling to survive. To those who say ‘spend the f’ing money’, you better think again.

  • para

    “Lyon have offered Alexandre Lacazette a new contract to ward off Arsenal’s attempts to sign the striker, but the bloggettas tell us that we can have him if only we pay enough.”

    This in itself may probably be true, as this is what clubs do when interest is generated for one of their players.

    We know though that Arsenal will only offer a certain amount and then go elsewhere if the price gets too silly, in line with their philosophy.

  • Andy Mack

    Ben Yedder signed for Sevilla yesterday as a replacement for Gameiro.

  • nicky

    At last the voice of sanity about this guy Johnny Evans.
    I don’t know him or his worth but the commented vitriol being published on other sites because he once played for Man Utd and isn’t any good, is simply amazing.
    The doom and gloom merchants are certainly out in strength today.

  • Polo, that story from Forbes is interesting. Since then it has been reported but not completely confirmed that AC Milan has been sold to China, along with Inter Milan and Aston Villa, but quite what they might do with these “products” is not yet clear.

  • Minstrel

    I’d like to see this site devote as much energy to analyzing wenger’s inability to win the league for the past 12 years (finishing on average 10 points off the league winner)!

    And explaining as well the mediocre results in the CL – at best a semi-final some 8 years ago.

  • Minstrel

    Tom Barry- could you offer a link to the deloitte study citrus? Thanks!

  • Mick

    I don’t get it.
    Apparently Giroud is not world class and we (according to all the armchair experts and pundits) will not win the premier league until Wenger stops dithering and being tight and stumps up the ‘going rate’ for a striker who is world class.
    So the answer is to buy Lacazette we are being told, he is just what we need, just pay the money and stop being so stingy. Is this the same world class Lacazette who cannot get in the French squad ahead of Giroud who apparently isn’t world class. If Lacazette is a £42 million player then Giroud must be worth £80 million. He’s maybe worth a gamble but not at the silly money they are asking.
    Or how about Wissam Ben-Yedder who apparently has ‘snubbed’ us in favour of Seville. He has never played for France and yet a load of gunners are apparently getting their knickers in a twist because we have ‘missed out’ on him due to Wengers dithering.
    Higuain….one good season and that’s about it, plus he’s 29 years old. £75 million, you must be joking.
    Mandzucik…. past his best at 30 years old, forget it.
    As far as I can see the best option who is worth a punt is Icardi but not at the price (£50 million plus) supposedly being asked.
    Lets be honest, there are no ‘world class’ strikers available so we will have to do the best we can at a lower level or find an unpolished diamond.
    I for one trust the manager to do what is needed.

  • Mandy Dodd

    I wouldn’t normally be referring to Arsenal fan TV, but was sent a link about a private chat Robbie had with Ivan Gazidis.

    The key points….taking this at face value of course….Ivan sounds pretty pissed off with the UK media for distorting his words, the club are very serious and active in the transfer market…..mentions a striker and experienced defender, but obviously would not provide details at this stage..Stan does not restrict spending, and is desperate to win things.
    There is money to spend, they want to win, but are sticking to a philosophy

    Sounds a pretty healthy situation to me, don’t let the angry, the haters, the sleepers from rival clubs, the media, idiot pundits, so called celebrity suffer fans or the agenda driven tell you otherwise.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Above….meant to write celebrity super fans, tho maybe got it right first time….

  • Leon

    Yeah I know. They were like that before we signed Welbeck, but soon changed their tune when he started playing well.
    I’ve got no problems with who we do our transfer business with and in which direction the players go.

  • Mick

    Just heard that Everton want £75 million for Lukaku.
    Football has finally gone mad.

  • Minstrel “I’d like to see this site devote as much energy to analyzing wenger’s inability to win the league for the past 12 years (finishing on average 10 points off the league winner” shows you don’t read the site properly. We have examined the past in great detail, with evidence.

  • Pedant

    As usual your much (self) vaunted research collapses into baseless assertion when it comes to issues connected to City. City became the functioning anchor tenants of the stadium in 2003 and Etihad’s stadium sponsorship began in 2011. That leaves 2 Gulf airlines between us, one of whom started to sponsor a football stadium in 2004.

    You may wish to change your moniker for City to the Council tenants or perhaps re-brand yours to the Terminal 3 Gunners