Arsenal v MLS all stars team news and a bit of a worry about Kane from the Lane




By Sir Hardly Anyone

Tomorrow morning (at least tomorrow in the UK) at 0130 BST Arsenal are again in action against the MLS All Stars.  We are told that Reiss Nelson, Martin Odegaard and Leandro Trossard have minor injuries and so might not be risked.  Oleksandr Zinchenko is definitely out.

The Standard offers up a team of


Timber, Saliba, Gabriel, Tierney;

Odegaard, Rice, Havertz;

Saka, Jesus, Martinelli.


90 min on the other hand go with an almost similar line up – just one change in fact, and they predict a 1-2 victory to Arsenal.


Timber, Saliba, Gabriel, Tierney;

Jorginho, Rice, Havertz;

Saka, Jesus, Martinelli.

Talk Sport don’t give a line-up but do say, “Thomas Partey and Emile Smith Rowe won’t be involved as they haven’t traveled with the initial group.  Reiss Nelson also misses out due to a minor toe injury.”

And meanwhile, in a sign of the changing times, for the first time in 30 years, what I am told is the world’s most popular football-based video game (I don’t play such games so I can’t be sure) will not be called FIFA.

EA Sports had previously paid a licensing fee of $150million per year to Fifa to use its name, but the silly buggers then asked for double that amount, so the two parted ways.

I wonder if this could be the start of Fifa just ludicrously overreaching itself, for certainly that is not unusual for monopoly organisations like Fifa as they reach their endgame.   And the moment other bodies realise that actually, the general public don’t give a toss about Fifa, then the organisation just simply crumbles.  By then it is often too big to scale itself back, and the debts just start to mount.

The press conference ahead of the Arsenal game game is here. 

But now since I don’t have anything else I can add on that game, here’s a bit of idle chit-chat on the subject of a Mr H Kane who plays with a minor football team in north London.

It seems Mr Kane has one year left on his contract with Tottenham H.  And they seem to be suggesting to any journalist foolish enough to listen, that Kane’s options are either sign a new deal or go now.  But even my four year old grandson knows contract law doesn’t work like that.  If Mr Kane wants to stay for a final year and collect his salary, he can.   Tottenham can’t force him out – the only thing they could do is not pick him, and I know they are stupid, but are they THAT stupid?

Last season Kane played 38 league games and scored 30 goals including six penalties.  The second highest was Son Heung-min who scored 10 in 33.  So sitting on Kane’s registration, not playing him and not getting the money for a new centre forward would surely be too dumb even for the very tiny totts.

But here’s another thing – the longer they leave the matter, the harder it becomes for the tinies to buy another player.  Kane scored 30 out of 70 goals last season for them in the league, and those two players (Kane and Son – which sounds like a family carpentry firm from the 1950s) were the only two in double figures in the league, scoring over half the goals for the club.  After that they had one player with five, one with four and one with three.

So there is no hardball for them to play.  They need Kane or the money.

Now what is interesting is that Tottenham in this regard are said by the Athletic to be modeling themselves on Paris Saint-Germain’s president Nasser Al-Khelaifi.  You probably know, he’s chairman and CEO of Paris Saint-Germain and chairman of beIN Media Group, and QSI and Digiturk and is on Uefa’s Executive Committee and is the Chairman of the European Club Association and the man who brought down the Super League after PSG weren’t invited.  He has been saying Kylian Mbappe must sign or leave PSG now, and although the rules don’t say Mbappe has to, the fact is Nasser Al-Khelaifi is power personified.  Football looks at PSG and bows down to absolute power.  Football looks at Tottenham and laughs at the size of the debt.

Besides Tottenham don’t have a very good record when it comes to selling top men.  One might recall Bale for example.  And there is a problem.  With the phenomenal debt that the club now has, and lenders becoming less keen to lend to football clubs, what with everyone owing each other so much money, Tottenham need cash.  And that’s not just to help buy players, but because the level of indebtedness is now so great (see How football has become a house of cards that is very likely to fall at any moment for example) everyone is getting rather edgy.

It makes one feel rather good about the fact that Arsenal got the business done early.


3 Replies to “Arsenal v MLS all stars team news and a bit of a worry about Kane from the Lane”

  1. 5-0, so at the very least, The sniping at Kai Havertz will stop for a short while , as all those journos figure out another angle of attack.

  2. My take is that the Spuds may make something out of this situation . And come off smelling of roses !

    The have a valuable asset ( Kane ) that could potentially grace most teams , and could score the goals in the French League , thus contributing immensely to
    PSG’s continued fame and fortune .

    PSG could off load that L’infant terrible , Kyllian Mbappe to the Spuds . Thus denying Arsenal of getting another striker . Since money is no matter fore PSG , they could foot part of Mbappe ‘s wage bill . He’d be most welcome at the Spuds , as most are not hoping that Richarleson suddenly becomes prolific in front of goal . There is that pesky issue of many of his goals being disallowed !

    The rest of it is mired in cloud and smoke .
    I really ought to get a new crystal ball !

  3. Les Martin

    “What Kai Havertz? He can’t even hit a barn door,” Jamie O’Hara said on talkSPORT.

    One swallow and all that, but really?

    Talkshites hatred of Arsenal in general, and that of certain pundits and presenters is beyond laughable.

    I know it’s clickbait or whatever, but honestly it’s like a running gag that just isn’t funny anymore.

    Anyway, I hope O’Hara is suitably embarrassed this morning.

    As for the match. Like most in the UK I suspect, I couldn’t watch, but have seen the goals, and what goals they are!!!

    From the stats it seems we just about dominated possession, 56% to 44%. Efforts on goal more so, 15 to 7 with 5 to 2 on target, but it appears we allowed them to counter attack a bit too easily, all be it without them ever being too threatening.

    That’s what the stats suggest anyway.

    Odegaard says “Good in patches, but room for improvement. Early days”

    Sounds a reasonable summary.

    What I like, is goals from everywhere again. Who needs Mbappe?

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