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July 2021

Two hot Arsenal transfers that are exciting quite a few commentators today

by Tony Attwood

Since the season ended every journalist who can lift a drink and find a keyboard (preferably simultaneously and without spilling the drink) has been telling us about this that and everyone else who is going to sign for Arsenal.

Meanwhile the Anti-Arsenal Arsenal (AAA) collective with their multifarious web sites have picked up two new themes.  One is that our defence last season was crap and that no one will ever come to Arsenal because the team is rubbish.  (By this I suppose they mean that we are rubbish as in being ranked the 6th best club in Europe, and we should be first).

To offer a little balance we’ve been running a series of stories about some of the players being tipped to come to Arsenal by the press and tipped not to come to Arsenal by the AAA.  The point is that when one of them comes we can run the headline that “you read it here first”.  Which will not be true, but it passes the time before the start of the season.  There’s an index of those already covered, at the bottom of this piece.

But today there seems a flurry of interest in two players we have not yet covered, and these are really HOT TIPS.  (I know this to be true since both stories are in the Daily Mail).

So here is the background on both.  In this way, you can mug up on then, and over the weekend (or next four days if living in the UK – since we now commence a four day holiday season), and get everyone to buy you a drink on the basis that you are in the know, and can tell anyone interested all about our latest acquisitions, and can talk, drink and consume crisps simultaneously.

The two names are Marvin Martin and Seydou Doumbia – so here we go

Marvin Martin is French and is 24.  He plays for Sochaux-Montbeliard as a creative midfielder.  His club came a poor 14th out of 20 this last season which is one reason why he is ready to move on.

He has played in the youth and under 21 teams for his country and made his full international début in June 2011 becoming only the 4th player in history for France to score two goals on his first match.

Martin attended Clairefontaine academy but was not selected – but it is often said that this failure led to a renewed energy and vigour in the player, and eventually the move to Sochaux’ youth academy.   Following success in the youth cup Martin was put in the amateur team that the club run in the fourth division.  In 2008 he became a professional and made his début in August.

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This past season he has started to be called Little Xavi because of his style of play and he was nominated as Young French Player of the Year.

The only issue is, do we really need another midfielder?  Maybe if he were to be seen the successor to Rosicky, it could he.

Seydou Doumbia is just 11 days older than Marvin Martin.  He is from the Ivory Coast, and plays for CSKA Moscow (currently second in the Russian League).

He played in the Ivory Coast until 2005 when he became the top scorer, before moving to Kashiwa Reysol in Japan – which is unusual I think.  After a move within Japan he left on a free transfer to Berner Sport Club Young Boys 1898 (more commonly known as Young Boys, Berne) for whom he scored 20 goals in his first year and 30 in the 2009/10 season.

On 5 January 2010 he transferred to CSKA Moscow, but stayed at Young Boys until the spring.  At the end of the year he was voted the Russian Premier League Player of the Year with 24 goals in 30 league games during the calendar year plus five Champions League goals in five games.  He then won the  Golden Boot after getting 23 goals in his first season in the Russian League.

He has played for the Ivory Coast since May 2008.

So, another forward?  We have Podolski and Van Persie.  Assuming Chamakh goes and Bendtner too, and assuming Benik Afobe isn’t quite ready and Park is not up to the job, one more would be good.

Here’s the list of players we have covered.

And for completeness, the list of the ten players I thought most likely to have more impact this season than last…

  • 1. Ryo
  • 2. Oxlade Chamberlaine
  • 3. Jack Wilshere
  • 4. Frimpong
  • 5.  Joel Campbell
  • 6. Abou Diaby
  • 7;  Francis Coquelin
  • 8. Podolski
  • 9.  Jenkinson
  • 10. Benik Afobe

Now, where’s that drink?

145 comments to Two hot Arsenal transfers that are exciting quite a few commentators today

  • allan

    arsenal must move away from a too young team , because it has proven fruitless in the reecent past
    we need solid mature players with here and there a younger player as reserves
    a solid backline woulde be pique vertogen maicon lucien mascerano vermaalean and koscielny radu
    for 5 years we had no adams , winterburn oleary keown
    no jennings seaman shilton..johnson

    midfiled: senna konoyanka a must, affellay..van dervaart, snijder,,,wilshere song

    strikers poldolski van persie neymar gomez…villa..llorente

    this is a team that will beat chelsea utd barc man real ac
    a team that will put cpl un threat all the time and the epl

    Note: Converted to lower case – repeated use of UPPER CASE characters will earn you a place on the moderation list.

  • Alansmithisgod

    Its always an interesting thing, this looking at the players our club might buy, but I personally never like to go public on my own choices, generally because I havent seen too much of most of them. I do like this feature though – keep it up.

    One thing I will take major issue with you Tony. Are you seriously suggesting that you would be happy if Tomas Rosicky was in contention to be our starting No.10 next year? In his entire career at the club, he has never been a serious contender for that role. I was a delighted as anyone with his return to some kind of form last year, but even the rejuvinated Rosicky is good enough to be a competant stand in only. He played a couple of absolute stormers, but even over the course of his run at the end of the season, he showed that he is just not good enough consistently enough to ever be a title challenging regular. Indeed if we are to be honest, he has never looked good enough at Arsenal.

    I know that your website takes a stance on not rocking the boat, but you will undermine your own credibility as a rational voice if you do not have a little fire in your belly. Last year we had cesc and Nasri. This year we had Tomas and Aaron. Come on, doesnt that make you a little embarassed? You do not have to have ‘petrodollars’ to find an upgrade on the last two (with a due nod of the head to the absent Jack, but first, lets not put too much pressure on hiam and second, Wenger hasnt played him as a no. 10 anyway)

    Arsenal is no longer winning things. Surely no matter how happy you are with this current situation, there are some areas of the squad that you feel need a massive upgrade. It is not disloyal to say that – indeed it would be disloyal ot deny it.There would be something wrong with you as a fan if you didnt make some constructive cristicsm or sugestions as to how we can improve, beyond suggesting that some of our reserves will somehow become superman over the summer (if only!)

  • Marcel Asiimwe

    Thax for this. I would go for Benik Afobe and Ryo, one defender and one midfielder

  • Damien Luu

    Can we give mr.keeming an oik, please?

  • allan

    konoplyanka will be as good as messi very shotly.. a must for arsenal

    we need a topclass goalkeeper.. like neuer..stekelnburg…schmeichel…casillas

    czcezny is hopeless despite his penalties heroics

    song wilshere nonoplyanka mvilla vander vaart snijder de jong in midfield ..will ensure that the oppposition have very little ball ..neymat alffely..pol versie..vill..ribbery ..strike like v day ww2

  • Damien Luu

    Man! This automatic post-switching feature is killing me! The above comment was for Anne’s “Financial Alert: Could Arsenal be forced to delist its stock in the near future?” article. 🙁

  • Damien Luu

    Now just forget a bout keeming, I nominate allan for an oik!

  • goonerjay

    @alansmithisgod – I think that was a little harsh on Rosicky saying he was never any good. Before all of his injuries he was immense for us and used to score on a regular basis. i think a lot of people forget how good he used to be after the frustration of his injury troubles

  • Dan T

    Your viewpoint doesn’t magically become more credible by writing in CAPITALS.

    I bet you are great football manager sitting infront of your computer. I’m affraid in real life it isn’t so easy to offload 18 players and bring in 18 more in a matter of weeks. Also, you’re not allowed that many non-homegrown players.

  • Olumide

    For me arsenal need 2 improve in all areas of play in d team and also improve tatically

  • Dan T

    @ Alansmithisgod
    I have to disagree on Rosicky. Once he found his form I think he was consistently one of the best performers on the pitch with just the odd bad game. I hope he keeps his place next year. I genuinely think after Arteta, Kos and RVP he has done more to stake a real claim for a starting place then any others this year.

  • Damien Luu

    @Alansmithisgod: Like I have told any other AAA member millions times, why don’t you go “support” Man $hitty? Come on, just look at their ALL STARS team. Err… I don’t really care to remember who they are but surely all of them are superstars, no? They have just won the title, and they will win millions other trophies in near future. Just go with them, they have everything you like. Thank you very much.

    Oh, and since when that “embarassed” word has appeared in AAA members’ dictionary? This is really warming my heart!

  • Alansmithisgod

    Damien Luu,

    Do people like you loiter around websites waiting to jump on people whose opinions you don’t agree with, instead of offering one yourself.

    For your sake, and the sake of people who have the misfortune to be near you in real life, I sincerely hope your pathetic, needless agressive comment is not a reflection of your real personality.

    The world is full of people who wont agree with you child. Get used to it. Your opinion is not necessarily the correct one. Get used to it. There is not such thing as an AAA. Get used to it. Not everyone thinks Tomas Rosicky is a world class player. Get used to it. Quite a lot of people think that the club could do with improvement. Get used to it. Views which are going to disappoint you are not going to go away, they are going to increase, because change is the way of football. And Arsenal will change. Soon. I love your fevered little childish wheeze of ‘go off and support man city’. Tell me little boy, when Arsene eventually does leave the club, probably within the next two years, will YOU still be supporting the team.

    I will. I dont even have to think twice about saying it. I suspect the same cannot be said of you. And if your comment is anything to go by, dont close the door on the way out. The club sure as hell wont miss you.

  • cupsui

    well all you need for whilshere to get a tick on greater impact is to set foot on the pitch…lets hope for that at least 😉

  • arsenal-steve

    I cannot see the point of being Pro-Wenger or Anti-Wenger just as a stance. Tribalism and predudice have caused nearly all the problems of our world. If Wenger does well praise him, if he begins to get his job wrong offer a critique. That’s normal in a free society and healthy. If it’s true that this is a Pro-Wenger site then that is sad. If this was an Anti-Wenger site I would feel the same. We should judge all situations on their merits. Their is nothing wrong with liking Wenger, nothing wrong in wanting him out. It’s only opinion. To only entertain one side of the argument is to close one’s ears to what he is poor at or, the other way round, to close ones ears to what he is good at. May valid reasoning always prevail.

  • Spartan,a black coat Labrador

    @ Allan, Ure kidding right?

  • Jules

    LOL @ Allan…is he a toddler?

  • Abel

    Yes, the Ivorian guy is a proven goal scorer and thats it.

    How on earth can he be 24 today and he was top scorer in 2005 in Ivory Coast?

    That’s his footballing age anyway. I am African and i know how long it takes an African footballer to shine.

  • Rhyle

    If there’s one thing I loathe it’s ignorance and the way you repeatedly dig out other blogs for their anti Wenger / Gazidis / Kroenke / all three (delete as appropriate!) stance is ridiculous. Rarely are they “anti-Arsenal”

    Although many of the comments can get…emotional…they do raise some important issues in the way our club has been run over the last few years and to dismiss them off hand shows your lack of a measured argument against them. Despite what many of those fans who are happy with the slow deterioration of standards of player at the club think, there is no fourth place trophy.

    Since when has it become sinful to want better for someone or something you love or care for deeply? I’d like to take you back to 1986 and the thousands that gathered on the Avenell Road to protest at the way we’d been run. It was after losing to W Brom 1-0 if my memory (I was 10) serves me right…and we were kept in the ground by my dad for an hour while fans chorused their discontent at the board and Howe. He went after another defeat at Coventry and was replaced by GG. Trophies followed. Not all change is bad.

    I’d challenge you to prove my anti- Wenger stance I’ll founded on three key points and leave you with one thought;

    1. Has the first XI improved since 2005? In what position are we stronger NOW than THEN? For me, RB is the only exception.
    2. Do you feel we compete in the transfer market? Who was the last signing we made that truly excited you? Given, Podolski has had the effect on me this summer and I’m that lessons have been learned from last summers debacle…but before him? 7 years of being proved otherwise consistently does leave me with many reservations…
    3. Have we improved as a team in terms of football played or gone backwards since 2005? One of the main excuses fans make for Wenger is that he’s made us entertaining…I’d argue that we’ve been going the wrong way for years in terms of quality.

    It’s overstating to use the following but it captures the essence of what I’m trying to say:

    “All it takes for evil to triumph is that good men do nothing”

    I don’t want to go back to the dark days of ’86 before change is implemented….not necessarily OF Wenger but at least BY him.

    I want better for the club I love. I don’t expect trophies…as I’ve said in the past…winning isn’t everything. Trying to win IS.

    But, as always I suppose…ignorance is bliss.

  • Sewa Noah

    It’s very absurd that we point at every good player you can talk of, but at the end of it all, they take them away from us. Ho…….. Is it because we’re the poorest team Or what? It’s heart breaking you know.

  • nicky

    Interesting post. I like the sound of Doumbia (at least on paper). Perhaps a swap with Arshavin is on the cards.
    @Dan T,
    Agree entirely with your view on Rosicky. I don’t think he will be a 90 minute player again but his contribution to the cause (after last season)will,IMO, be considerable.

  • jesus casanova

    arsenal really only need 3-4 new signings and ditch the deadwood that is chamakh, bendtner, arshavin, vela, almunia and djourou. selling all these players will not only give us money to spend but will lighten our wage bill. wilshere will be like a new signing for us and frimpong and coquelin will prove to be good backup players. the 4 players i’d like to see coming in are; javi matinez or yann m’vila, belhanda, fernando llorente and radu, but unfortunately not all these players will be bought and wenger will do his business on the cheap again altho i think this time there will be 1 big name.

  • Rhyle – on the issue of ignorance, I suspect the ignorance is with you, in that you are judging my writing by removing the key parts of what I believe. Because you have removed the central part of my thesis, then nothing you write makes any sense in relation to the comments I have made on this blog.

    If I can try and summarise where I come from on this (and of course you have to recall I am only one of half a dozen writers on this blog) it is

    1. In the days of Howe etc that you quote football wealth, and therefore the ability of clubs to buy and keep players was based on little more than the income from the crowds and the selling of players. Man U developed an international marketing system from the 1960s onwards, but other than that it was mostly gates that produced the money. Some benefactors gave money, but it did not swamp the whole system

    2. Thus in those days you could compare one manager with another since most of the big clubs had similar sized grounds and the opportunity to get the big crowds.

    3. But with the advent of the oil rich billionaires that changed – not just because they can pay far more than anyone else for players, they can also up the wages to beyond that which non oil-rich clubs can afford. And given the refusal of the FA to implement tapping up regs in any serious manner since the Cole saga the oil-rich know that they can do anything then like to induce players to leave.

    4. At the same time Man U have done a remarkable job in expanding ever further their marketing income to an extraordinary level.

    5. Arsenal are not oil rich, and personally I am happier with the rejection of money from Mr Usmanov, and we are behind on the issue of marketing, because of the mega investment in the Emirates. But within a year we will be coming towards the end of the contracts that helped build the Ems.

    6. These are the factors that affect Arsenal. It is a chosen economic approach, and within the confines that it gives I believe we do wonderfully to be 3rd in the EPL and 6th in Europe. I believe also that there are flaws in the oil-rich approach, and in the approach of the Spanish giants which will take us up the rankings further in the coming years, and I am hopeful that FFP will have some impact. So within the context I believe we are doing brilliantly, and I support the approach.

    7. Where I do make fun of the AAA is that they tend to adopt a simplistic approach in which this economic background is either ignored, or else wished away. Fine, if you and others want to have Mr Usmanov or other mega rich person running the club that is your view. It is not mine. But I would suggest that in ignoring these views of mine which have been expressed regularly here it is you, rather than I that is being ignorant.

  • Arsenal-Steve – I would refer you to my answer to Rhyle. Aresene Wenger is the man who is the figurehead of the club, and he embodies the issues I outlined there. It is the approach and way of running the club that is the issue.

  • Ong Bing

    I think we will have new second GK next season.

    Almunia already gone, Fabianski not happy and want to leave, Mannone want to go to Hull.

    So, if Arsene not buy another GK for 2nd choice, Damian, James or Sean McDermott will be our 2nd GK.

  • Jonno

    Not much to say – just to ‘allan’ ay 3:03pm …. If you think Szczęsny (get the spelling right sonny!) is hopeless than you are an idiot that should stick to staring at your Hollyoaks Calendar you sad little toad! A classic AAA fool. And your ramblings picking a fantasy 7 man midfield and 6 man attack is so hilariously imbecilic I’m surprised they let you have a computer in your padded cell.

    Nice blog by the way Tony – more power to you!

  • ak47

    think i should apologise to spud fans for calling the AAA spuds in disguise.

  • jake

    I was interested to read about these two possible transfers both sound as though they could be interesting.(couldn’t think of another word).
    I know before i write this that it won’t be a popular view but in the last season Cesc played for us he really didn’t contribute much having/coming bcak from a broken leg is a valid excuse . It took awhile for him to settle in at barca
    and as for Nasri it was only when man city where after/ got him that the media started raving about him.
    this nostalgia for the past really winds me up.
    and to end with surely finishing 3rd is better than finishing 4th( re: someones going backwards comment)

  • jake

    exciting was the word that was on the tip of my keyboard

  • Rhyle

    Not really with you Tony…highlighted a key theme and didn’t discuss your post. Was more interested in highlighting a major thread through all posts on your site…that of the ignorant, unsubstantiated, repeated use of the term “AAA – Anti-Arsenal Arsenal”. Thought I made myself clear on that in the text of my comment?

    Thanks for your response…here’s mine:
    1. Good point, there was but a few rich people in the game at the time, though I don’t see that your point has any relevance to the discussion? I was discussing fans voicing their discontent (what you’d deem AAA behaviour) as driving positive change as well as highlighting that such behaviour is nothing new. As far as your point regarding money in the game preventing success or at least challenging? Montpellier and Borussia Dortmund want to tell you otherwise…
    2. Your point in number 2 is barely related to that made in no.1…it’s as easy as ever to spot a bad manager. Just ask Chelsea fans what they think of AVB…but again it’s really got nothing to do with any of my poins has it? Weird tangent…
    3. Again…this isn’t addressing any of the issues raised in my comment. Where did it come from?! As you like it…and it’s there for all to see…I’d address your third point in the petulant manner of Balotelli ” why always Arsenal?” Everyone faces the same problem in this regard but you seem to imply that the world is unfair? Balder and dash. Our wage bill is amongst the top end (6th?) in the PL but is spread so poorly that we reward excellence with mediocre top-end wages ( £130k pw sounds a lot to me…!) while rewarding mediocrity with excellent top-end wages then wonder why we can’t move players like Bendtner or Denilson or Chamakh on for a fee….whodafunkit?
    4. Yes they have. We have not, though I have to say the stadium and shirt deal looked good at the time and I have no problem with compromising short term potential gains for long term security. What about commercial deals? Man Utd have a plethora of sponsor partners in different industries. We don’t compete on that and are light years behind them here.
    5. I too am happy to ignore Usmanov as an option on moral grounds and am happy to give Kroenke a chance…he’s had 13 months so really not much of an opportunity to make his mark. Once again, though, has nothing to do with my original comment? Oh, and if you want the VERY DEFINITION of ignorant…implying I’ve ever suggested Usmanov as the answer, as you do above, without any evidence is IT!
    6. Agreed, 3rd in this environment is a stunning result. Results for me are rarely the problem and our league position disguises a multitude of sins, those I actually covered above. Our death by a thousand paper cuts. I want an Arsenal that wins the title but am honest enough to admit that, first, we need to be in a place to compete. As I said, trying to win is what’s important, and I feel we made mistakes with the recruitment, retention and availability of funds which are there (depending on who you believe) and we’ve seen both the quality of the side and our competitiveness on the pitch suffer because of it.
    7. Now we get to it. Your findings are completely different to my own, I’ve read many intelligent dissections of our finances from so-called “AAA’s”, many of whom are financially savvy. Google my name, for example. I admit, some fans are both emotional and dumb as a brick when it comes to the above. It still doesn’t make them “anti- Arsenal”. Wanting more for something you love is natural isn’t it? Surely wanting positive change is pro-Arsenal? What you mean is that you don’t agree with their standpoint and find them stupid, therefore they’re “AAA”? Sounds pretty ignorant…

    I’m a regular visitor to your site and I’ll admit to finding an occasional decent read here…but more often than not I’m disappointed (rarely apoplectic…but not never!) in your AAA nonsense which you never really tackle with any sort of intelligence other than the fact you make you make it clear that you don’t agree and don’t like it. That’s fine…you’re entitled to your opinion…but if you’re going to have a pop at those who disagree with you at least try to tackle their opinions head on rather than espousing a weird “AAAA” agenda. That’s Anti-Anti-Arsenal Arsenal by the by…heh…

    I appreciate you taking the time to repond – just wished you’d addressed any of the questions or points I raised rather than rattling off some weird manifesto.

  • bjtgooner

    Tony – an interesting article, but we can never believe the press, even the Daily Mail, so it would be wrong to get too excited about any reports until they are announced by Arsenal FC.

    However, it is always good to find out some more about potential transfer targets.

    One thing I cannot understand is why some people use an article about possible transfer targets to abuse existing players. Rosicky played his guts out for us last season and does not deserve destructive comments such as those made by Alansmithisgod.

    And Alansmithisgod – in your second post – addressed to Damien Luu – you really came across even more clearly as a prima donna and cretin all in one, no wonder he thought you were a rat from the AAA sewer.

  • bennydevito


    I read this blog regularly and agree with a lot of what you say and also agree that running the club the sugar daddy way isn’t the answer. The problem I have is your apparent reluctance to accept that the way we’re being run presently isn’t the answer either? Please can you explain how the systematic dismantling of the invincibles and weakening of the squad whilst refusing to purchase the required level of players to compete with the huge profits we’re posting, some of which has come from Man city, strengthening our main competitor at the same time as weakening us as the best way to run our club? Explain why it is that Your “lord” Wenger preaches ffp yet is hypocritically happy to take man city’s oil money on our best players selling them at prices way over their true worth which has contributed to the inflating of the transfer market as well as strengthening our main rivals and weakening ourselves in the process? And as for ffp you really are deluded I’m afraid. It is a pipe dream that is never going to happen as has been demonstrated by the owners of man city sponsoring themselves with ethiad £400m over a 10 year contract? Please don’t resort to abusing me as I am genuinely interested in your answer to my questions

  • Arvind

    Loads of AAA’s here today. Not even worth reading their comments. Will we run out of Oik awards?

    @Damien: I use a RSS reader like Google Reader. It helps me look at all the comments on mutiple posts. Check that out.

  • Matt Clarke

    1. Has the first XI improved since 2005? In what position are we stronger NOW than THEN? For me, RB is the only exception.

    A: RVP is stronger now than then. Diaby is. Reyes wasn’t all that. Szczesny is nearly as good now as Jens was then and has the potential to be even better.
    Pires, Ljungberg, Bergkamp & Henry – who in world football is better than those four now?

    2. Do you feel we compete in the transfer market? Who was the last signing we made that truly excited you? Given, Podolski has had the effect on me this summer and I’m that lessons have been learned from last summers debacle…but before him? 7 years of being proved otherwise consistently does leave me with many reservations…

    A: Transfers schmansfers…Youth Youth Youth! Why squander money and time on big name stars? Especially at a time when their ‘value’ is just as likely to depreciate?

    3. Have we improved as a team in terms of football played or gone backwards since 2005? One of the main excuses fans make for Wenger is that he’s made us entertaining…I’d argue that we’ve been going the wrong way for years in terms of quality.

    A: Really? You compare the misery of the Don Howe era with Wenger football? Do you remember what fans of other clubs chanted in those days? ‘Boring, boring Arsenal!’ And what do they say now? Many love the way we play and love to watch AFC play.

    And fans watching football is what makes pays for it to be a professional game.

    It’s overstating to use the following but it captures the essence of what I’m trying to say:

    “All it takes for evil to triumph is that good men do nothing”

    A: Okay, I’ll agree with you there…you are overstating it.

    I want better for the club I love. I don’t expect trophies…as I’ve said in the past…winning isn’t everything. Trying to win IS.

    A: I disagree that the present set-up is failing in that aim.

  • RGG


    I read the first paragraph & then had enough – more deluded AKB rubbish.

    Two points:

    AAA is Anti-Arsene Arsenal. Whereas you AKB’s are not Arsenal fans – you are Arsene Fans. You think one man is more important than the club.

    And, we let in 49 league goals last season. Rubbish pretty much sums it up.

    Oik approved!
  • Rhyle

    Matt, amazing response. Thank you.

    1. RVP better than Henry who was first choice striker then? Computer says no. Messi and Ronaldo want a word about your point on who’s better than the four you mention now. As do about half a dozen others. With the exception of Bergkamp. No one is better than Dennis.
    2. Excellent point, I’ve fully seen the error of my ways.
    3. Again, your expert knowledge and insightful comments astound me. Except no, I didn’t compare our football now to that of Don Howe’s era. At all. EVER. I compared to that played in 2005 and how we’ve seen it deteriorate over the past few years. We were arguably the best side in Europe in 2004. We nowhere near that now, or the sixth place that we are statistically…but that clearly is only opinion…that I could back up if needed…
    4. I don’t think we’re built to either win or compete, we’re built to survive. It’s a long term model with honourable goals. However, if you marry that long term model with costs that we, the fans, are paying now, the club is suffering because of them. The gulf between the haves and have nots is growing, as seen by the increase in prize for the CL v Europa. Factor in the inevitable changes driven by the current global economic malaise and you need to be a brand linked with success if you’re truly going to survive. I honestly believe (yes…it is an opinion…) that, in the future, outside of the CL, there will be less money in football and that those who qualify regularly for the CL will almost guarantee their seat at the table purely by the money they make from the competition. My point has been, that on current form and the path of compromises we’re follwing, that we’ll fall from that select group in the coming years and never get it back. I don’t want to be the next Liverpool, I want to be the next Dortmund, Montpellier…

    As for overstating it…I did point that out myself, but take your point! There’s nothing more apt though without overstating it… 😉

    Thanks for joining in.

  • Bennydevito

    I will try my best,

    I don’t think the way we are run is perfect – but no system ever is.

    Please can you explain how the systematic dismantling of the invincibles and weakening of the squad whilst refusing to purchase the required level of players to compete with the huge profits we’re posting, some of which has come from Man city, strengthening our main competitor at the same time as weakening us as the best way to run our club?

    I can explain it by saying I don’t accept this is true. I don’t accept the invincibles was dismantled in any way other than a way necessary for the club to move on. I look at, for example, the Double side of 1971 which was held together, and which as a result saw the club slip from the 3 major trophies in 2 seasons to 10th in 1973/4 while being knocked out the cup by Tranmere. I believe a new structure was necessary and I watched as the brilliant players lost it. Look at Freddie – he moved and WHU found they had a player who could hardly play. Henry moved to Barca, and as I said in one article, cost Barca something like £2m a game, he got so few games.

    The profits are not huge enough to allow us to buy anyone we want and pay anything we want – because Man C and Chelsea can outbid us on anyone, and will do so just to stop AFC getting the players they want. Look at how they bought Nasri and played him in about half the games he could have played in, including League Cup and Euro cup matches.

    Nasri and Cesc made it clear they wanted to leave, and Wenger did everything he could to hold onto them. Cesc had years left on his contract, but we couldn’t hold him. As I said in reply to an earlies post, the failure of the FA and EPL to uphold tapping up rules means anyone can be approached and taken if the club has enough money.

    Also on the profits, I don’t believe football as it is now will stay the same … but I am not sure where it is going. Having money is a good idea. And the great point is that we came third and have money to spend. Supposing we had spent much of it and still come third.,.. which is possible. Remember purchases don’t guarantee success- see Liverpool and Chelsea as examples in league terms, plus in terms of trading Tottenham.

    Explain why it is that Your “lord” Wenger preaches ffp yet is hypocritically happy to take man city’s oil money on our best players selling them at prices way over their true worth which has contributed to the inflating of the transfer market as well as strengthening our main rivals and weakening ourselves in the process?

    Again I don’t agree with your assumption. There is not a single solitary iota of evidence to say that Mr Wenger was happy to take Man City’s money. He did everything possible to hold on.

    And as for ffp you really are deluded I’m afraid. It is a pipe dream that is never going to happen as has been demonstrated by the owners of man city sponsoring themselves with ethiad £400m over a 10 year contract? Please don’t resort to abusing me as I am genuinely interested in your answer to my questions

    It is interesting that you says “Please don’t resort to abusing me”, when you write “you really are deluded” which seems as close to abuse as I can imagine. The problem here is that you put no evidence forward save that it has not worked yet, but it is not actually up and running yet.

    I am doubtful about FFP, I hope Uefa will do something about it, but I am unsure. I was at a meeting with the assistant to Platini at which I asked him if Uefa had a team of accountants and lawyers in place, since I felt sure they would be needed. He admitted not – and yet it looks as if they are beginning to put them in place. Although Platini is no friend of Wenger, Uefa holds Arsenal in the highest esteem, and it is a model of a club that has huge success in building facilities and holding a team together.

    So we wait and see.

    I don’t think myself or my fellow writers on Untold abuse people – but we get fed up with who break the very clear rules posted on this site, which are, you have to stay on topic, you can’t copy posts etc from elsewhere, you can’t be abusive, and you need to develop an argument. I fear you have broken two of the rules here. You have been abusive in saying “you really are deluded” and you have developed no argument as to why you think FFP will fail. It is an incredibly complex economic and political issue – not least looking at the role of Chelsea. Abramovich has the ear of Platini, and I would love to know what happens at their next meeting given the volte face that Abramovich has undertaken. I think Platini is fuming at what has happened and will redouble his efforts.

    In terms of the abuse, I would admit that with our Oik Awards we are sarcastic, but the excuse is that when one has spent several hours developing a finally argued piece (as oppose to today’s piece which was meant to be humorous, and was recognised as such by regular readers) to find someone come on and call one “deluded” or other names, does lead to a need to let off a spot of steam. An oik award does that.

  • Matt Clarke

    Thank you.

    I didn’t mean that RVP was better than TH, just that he is better than he was back then.

    Sorry for misunderstanding about DH era – and … phew!

    I thoroughly agree about global branding, but disagree in that I believe than Wenger football is THAT brand. Others before have pointed out the popularity of the Dutch. My first football shirt (and only one until I was old) was an Ajax shirt.

    As for your point 4 above…I think, if you are not familiar with many of the articles here on UA that you should be. The thrust of many articles is that we ave been deprived of that success through external forces and not internal failures.

    Your reasoned arguments speak of a true passion for the club. Please try to see the UA side too 😀

  • Stuart

    I want to pick up on your comment ref FFP.

    We have to prepare for FFP as all we have been told is that it will happen. If we choose to ignore this then we are only shooting ourselves in the foot. With regard to Man City sponsoring themselves with £400Mill over 10 years, well if they get away with that and end up living within their means, good for them, it doesn’t in any way mean that Arsenal can throw caution to the wind and ignore FFP does it?

    Another note ref accepting Oil money for our players. I kind of feel the same as you here except that on the other hand they will over inflate the market any way and the end result is everyones wage bill going up to keep hold of their players. Selling Nasri to them gave us some much needed cash reserve and allowed us to comfortably improve other contracts as we wish.

  • RGG – thank you for repeating the goal mantra – it has been appearing here non-stop for 3 days. Funny no one really said it before it became the anthem. You win an Oik award, for obvious reasons.

  • Ong Bing

    About Doumbia, I am no idea about him.

    But I don’t like we have too many African players, we will have big problem when they left for African Cup Nation.

    Last season, when Yaya Toure left for ACN, City struggled for a few game. We lucky Song not went to ACN.

    We already have that problem in the past, Kolo went to ACN, and when he back he gots malaria or other disease, Arsene fumed for a few weeks.

  • Mahdain

    @Tony where is RGG’s oik?

  • jake

    I may sound like i’m contradicting my self with regard to the past but i rated Reyes well until the Neville brothers kicked him off the park.

    What annoys me is the comparisons drawn say Dennis vs Robin(purely that they are both dutch)

    and to explain how this becomes relevant towards future possible signings, future players may look at how “robust”(how dirty are Liverpool etc) the EPL is and decide they don’t want stitches/broken ankles or in Arteta’s case to be knocked out while playing footie.

    I am also interested in what denotes a bad manager , i’m assuming that you were not present at the meeting between AVB and Mr Ambrovichthingy were they discussed the style of play that the blue scum( sorry Chelsea) were gonna try?

    I realize this does lead us into Anti football football( to steal an idea) but Mourhino’s porto sure was effective ,boring and frustrating .

    I would like arsenal to win things sure but i would prefer they played enjoyable football and win playing well, hopefully the pair are not mutually exclusive.

    I do realize that this is barely relevant to the original article but it does extend my views towards some rather under thought out comments

  • Stuart

    RGG you are funny, I don’t think you would be able to understand the irony.

  • bennydevito


    Thanks for your reply and you are right about the deluded comment. I realised as soon as I posted it that it was the wrong choice of word and I apologise for that. I read your site daily ike I do a few others and although I disagree with some of your reply I respect your opinion. Keep up the good work. Just perhaps try to not allow your unequivocal faith in Wenger cloud your judgement of what is best for Arsenal, afteral, be we akbs or AAA’ S, or like me somewhere in the middle, it is Arsenal that we love.

  • T2T

    ABout winning – sure, it would be cool to win CC or FA Cup but let’s face it; who in their right mind would rather be a L’pool fan (they did win a cup but no CL football) than an Arsenal fan? Honestly, the only 2 trophies I really care about is BPL and CL.

    Why do football players choose a certain club (not in any prioritization?
    – History
    – Current and perceived quality in the team
    – Manager
    – Football style/ideology
    – League
    – Location of the club (country, climate, family/friends, etc)
    – Players already at the club
    – Perceived playing opportunity
    – Salary
    – Perceived stability of the club
    – fan, or hater, of a particular club

    Why would any player want to choose e.g. Spurs or Liverpool above Arsenal…? Arsenal “outscore” most clubs on all the above points.

  • bob

    Dan T,
    I think you’ve seriously overlooked Sagna and Song as essential to the mix.

  • Alansmithisgod


    I dont think my comment was in any way disrespectful of Rosicky . It may not be your opinion, but I simply do not think he has the spark needed to be an Arsenal No. 10. A squad man yes. A top quality creative midfielder, no. Not now and Im doubtful if he ever was. If you think thats insulting, you must be living in a bubble. Its an opinion with quite a few years of watching Rosicky to back it up.

    As to my second comment, I think if you read Mr. Luu’s comment, to which my own comment was only a reply, then he simply reaped what he sowed.

    Its seems you are cut from the same cloth. Just so you know, in the real world, where you cant hide insults behind a keyboard, there is no such thing as an AAA. It is a stupid and divisive term, the same as the equally derisory AKB term that is bandided about by other fans. I may risk the wrath of the site owners on this, but these terms succeed in doing nothing except exacerbate divisions that already exist between fans. We all support the same team from heaven’s sake – the creation and propogation of the AAA term by this site is far from its proudest moment. Again, simply the opinion of someone who has taken time out to read the site and write some opinions.

    You are entitled to your opinion of Arsenal and its players. I am entitled to disagree. But if you, Mr. Luu or anyone else come on and insult me for no reason, other than I dont espouse the same ideas as you do, I make no apology whatsoever for meeting fire with fire. You would not be so quick to insult me to my face, I can promsise you.

    As to the rest of the comments, very brave and worthy effort by Tony to itemise his opinions and justify them. I personally do not agree with quite a few of them, and another day would love to site down and write a few counter arguments to each point. But truthfully, the attitude of some of the posters takes the good out of it. Perhaps the site contributors may feel it necessary to create a snappy acronym for ‘supporters’ who claim to support the current system withough question, but want to use this zeal as an excuse to gang up and try to abuse people with a contrary opinion.

  • kc

    LOL. This post makes me laugh. Rosicky is nothing more than a squad player that stepped up to fill a void left by Cesc. He did a great job relative to his respective talents, but we need a legit CM to replace what we lost in Cesc. Martin could be that player.

  • bjtgooner


    What a bellicose post! Its ok for you to be snide about Rosicky and Ramsey – a typical AAA tactic – but you don’t like getting the same treatment. What a pompous bully!

  • robl

    Regarding transfers, there’s a lot of talk from the Crewe season ticket holders at work about Nick Powell. Personally I think he’ll go to United due to the Dario/Fergie relationship.

  • ak47

    lol-bellicose. spot on

  • ak47

    love rosickys’ half turn, i think only jack can skip away from opponents so easily. i think thats been my worst part of last season. no jack.

  • goonergerry


    Stan Kroenke, the absentee owner of Arsenal FC that Tony is such an advocate of is a billionaire-unless anybody had been misled by Tony’s inferred anti Usmanov comments into thinking he was a normal bloke like you and I with a few bob. Unlike the petrol fueled billionaires-Stan doesn’t put his own money into the club.- he invests in Arsenal’s shares simply to make a profit on them at some time when it is convenient for him to sell-and to profit on any future commercial activity of the club.

    Yes capitalism is a wonderful thing-for Kroenke especially-and other shareholders who do the same-own and control the club through shares but don’t put any of their own money in to run it.

    They are essentially spenders of other peoples (fans) money-and those fans whose money it is most of the time get no say in how the money is spent-if fans are lucky if we might be told a wee snippet of information- but most of the time the club is run more like the secret service than a community based football club with a world wide fan base of 500m.

    No Arsenal fan knows who the transfer targets are or even whether we have any let alone who has to be sold first to finance it.

    This may be ok for commercial enterprise where you get paid to be an employee but it is a crap model for a football fan. Supporting a football club is a world away from supporting a business-and it may surprise you all to know there is such a thing as democracy in the rest of the world. I can see why you may regard it as unimportant when you actually use your vote for people who think they are born to rule others and over-identify with a hereditary monarch.

    I don’t think you even have to look far to find more democracy in football-Germany-or even Barcelona FFS.

    As for the AST-who do they represent?-themselves mostly but are usually hammered on this site for not supporting the BoD’s line on everything.

    What I do know is that wonderful manager though he has been, there has also been a downside- at every transfer window since Arsene Wenger arrived at the club, fans of this club are tortured by the prospect of losing our best players-and usually they go-eventually. Last year’s sale of Nasri and Fabregas was not a bolt out of the blue-it was par for the course. They were tapped up and top players of this club are always going to be tapped up whilst the club don’t pay its best players top salaries.

    The so called sustainability policy is highly questionable-not that becoming sustainable is not every businesses objective-only the method of doing so-compromising on player value and experience- by only buying kids and unknowns, selling star players and buying inferior replacements at the expense of capital and corporate expansion is putting the cart before the horse.

    The risks and failures of this policy are never acknowledged on this site-in fact contributors will try and argue it is the only way to run a football club-when in fact the opposite is true-only Arsenal out of top European clubs choose to prioritise expenditure on everything and everyone except established top players. The surprise is not that we are unsuccessful but that we compete at all and we do without ever looking capable of winning anything. All others of course, are all stupid or corrupt.

    This site is increasingly sounding like a mouthpiece for the owner and the Board of Directors as well as the manager- that spending our money on buying one or 2 top players is Anti Arsenal in your eyes, risking financial oblivion, yet selling our best players to rivals each year is ok-good pro-Arsenal stuff? Its simply no longer a credible argument.

    Oik approved!
  • JJ

    You hear that gurgling sound? That’s Goonergerry’s psychobabble rhetoric gurgling down the plughole.

  • zdzis

    @Alansmithgod: Rosicky hasn’t got it in him to be Arsenal’s no. 10 cause he’s Arsenal no. 7.
    In his first season for Arsenal, Rosicky started some 22 games (out of 38 total). Not first-team material? He’s actually treated universally as our left winger of the 2006-07 season! The Rosicky you’re referring to is most likely the one who missed 18 months of play through an injury that also somehow destroyed his morale. Anyone who’s seen Rosicky’s failed returns to the game over the past few seasons knows that the guy had serious issues unrelated to his supposedly lacking skills. The fact is he’s a formidable player of great skill who’s only now catching up on the kind of game he played before injury.

    @Rhyle: Does the current Arsenal side compare to the one from 2005? Which one? The one from 2004-05 or the one from 2005-06?
    Here’s how I see it:
    1. Lehmann v. Szczesny: we have a badass over here. Szczesny is a formidable keeper, though he still has to improve, in particular, he should try to show the same quality for the club as he shows for his country. But Lehmann wasn’t such a great keeper; he was mentally strong, but a little short on skills. Szczesny isn’t limited in this respect.
    2. Sagna v. Lauren: I never much liked Lauren because he was only ever good enough, never more than that. sagna is one of the best in the world in his position.
    3. Cole/Flamini v. Gibbs/Santos: I thinks it’s hard on Santos to measure his quality according to what he achieved this season – he missed most of it. Cole obviously comes out on top, but that’s as far as it gets.
    4-5. Campbell/Senderos – Toure v. Koscielny/Vermaelen: formidable as Toure was, and great as Campbell was at that time, neither compares favorably to Kos & TV5. Our current centre-backs beat them for skill, speed, and keep up in stamina and tactical abilities. You must have missed them this season, they were really very good. And given that both have been badly served by their colleagues (our midfield often failed to help them enough) and by the refs (don’t know where did they get all the yellows they gave Kos!), they can only improve next season.
    6. Vieira/Gilberto v. Song: It’s hard to compare Song to Vieira, but he did quite some catching up this season. I think you underestimate him. Even if he’s not thee yet, he’s not that far behind. And while he loses to Gilberto in defence, he makes up for that in attack.
    7. Reyes/Pires v. Gervinho/Chamberlain: Reyes was a great winger, but Gervinho is really of a similar ilk. I believe he will get better: he has shown a lot of skill for Lille and IVC, which did not translate to his Arsenal performances. He did his learning, he can only improve now. Whether he compares with Pires at all is, of course, a matter of debate. Again, we haven’t even seen him at his best, so why write him off already? Chambo looks like a top player in several months. If he does well, he can beat anyone. He has the skill, the ambition, and the stamina to keep up with the best. Come back in a year or so and ask the question again!
    8. Fabregas v. Arteta: Of course Fab will come on top, it’s not for nothing we’ve been drooling over his skills all these years. But Arteta is nobody’s slouch. Given that our system of play has changed from 2005, I think he’s not that far from the mark. Although a face-to-face duel will always favour Fab.
    9. Henry v. RVP: I know Henry is God for most of us who grew up with the Wenger Arsenal. I became a supporter a season and a half before he arrived, But most of my happy Arsenal memories are obviously about TH. Nevertheless, RVP does give this Arsenal sidemore than just a creative spark and a bag of goals. They play in different styles – TH favoring a soft-footed, skillful play, RVP having the skill, but favoring a more direct approach. Do you know Robin now has 1,5 as many assists TH ever got for Arsenal? It illustrates the difference in approach to the game.
    10. Ramsey/Rosicky v. Pires/Reyes: This season, we had a struggling junior Welshman and a recovering Czech shape our game. It shouldn’t happen again. It won’t. Why? There’s only so many seasons Ramsey can take to regain the shape he was in pre-Stoke. There’s only one thing Rosicky can do now that he’s shown what he’s made of. Of course, we’re still looking for Wilshere, and we have other players who can play behind the striker – Chamberlain, perhaps Eisfeld, Ozyakup – but after this season’s performances I’m pretty confident Rosicky can make it as our recurrent backup option. Either way, the player who steps up to play in the middle will always have great big boots to fill, replacing the ghosts of Pires and Fabregas…
    11. Ljungberg v. Walcott: Both have their deficiencies. The Swede made up for his with ambition. That’s often what Walcott lacks. But I think he is a victim of his circumstances. Everyone will always expect him to win us matches, but somehow he’s always one step behind our expectations. I don’t know if he can make it, but Chamberlain’s already tailing him for that spot, so he better do good.

    All in all: It looks like 8:5 for the 2005 Arsenal(s). To say all Arsenal now offers is Sagna is a gross overstatement. I also don’t believe buying big will make us particularly strong. A Messi or a Ronaldo will shape our game, whether we like it or not. It might take another season for it to work, and even then, his manner of playing might turn out not to work so well in EPL circumstances. I’m more inclined to believe we may benefit from buying in the current medium range – players (supposedly) worth around 20 million. But we’re not so far from a very strong lineup.

    I see a number of you want Arsenal to stop selling and improve buying. I’ll take issue with you here.
    For the past decade Arsenal acquired at least one top-shelf player per season: Gilberto, Reyes, RVP (a hot kid off from a winning Feyenoord side), Hleb (key player in a winning Stuttgart side), Rosicky (playmaker for BVB in their good years), Eduardo, Arshavin, Vermaelen, Gervinho, Arteta and Mertesacker. In the selfsame decade we sold: Vieira, Cole, Henry, Reyes, Hleb, Adebayor, Toure, Eduardo, Cesc & Nasri. In these terms, we’re almost even. Of the key players we sold, Cole, Adebayor, Toure & Nasri went to English clubs, chiefly to City. Each of them asked to be transferred and ultimately received the green light, and each can be said to have gone out for money. The thing is, with all the liabilities Arsenal have (the Emirates debt, obviously), the club went to great lengths NOT to become a selling club. We never slumped like Borussia did after they sold Rosicky. We stuck up there and we’re still getting back at the other top clubs in the EPL. I don’t think that’s what selling clubs do. And I don’t think we need to change the policy entirely just because a number of us would love to see a Messi in the driving seat in N5. The youth setup is just beggining to deliver great young players, and we’re still on the market with buys of Podolski’s ilk – shrewd but out there. Truth is, unless there’s a sudden development, we won’t need more than 2-3 new players, at least one of them absolutely top-class (i.e. 15-25 million prce range). And that’s all.

  • Shard


    This site, to my knowledge, has never supported Kroenke.

  • zdzis

    @goonergerry: just curious – which club openly states its transfer & financial policies? I suppose that, as a self-sufficient enterprise, Arsenal only got as much from Kroenke as he chose to pay for the stakes he got. He can’t just hand in the money, it’s illegal. He’d need an investment that could cover up the deal. And that’s hardly the kind of thing a respectable capitalist would do.

  • who is arsenal signing?

  • Scott

    Goonergerry,if Wenger has constantly downgraded each transfer window,why is it we aren’t running 10th,16th or even ended up in the League??
    I do enjoy experts,even self professed ones,stating hings as fact when they’re merely one persons opinion.
    Heres a fact though,even though it’s merely my option,you’re a bloody nark 🙂

  • Scott

    Oh,and in defence of Stan……he’s a businessman,and has been one for a long,long time.
    He’s an investor.
    It is not is fault that shareholders sold to him,knowing exactly what he is and that he’d expect a return on his investment.
    Arsenal are ot a plaything for him.
    Why anyone kocks him for wanting a profit astonishes me.
    Knock those why endorsed him coming in,and sold their shares to him.
    Do I want Stan as our owner,well,I’d rather him than Usmanov,but no,ideally,as a fan,I’d love someone to come in and hope to break even….in other words,NOT AN INVESTOR.
    I don’t want our club to become one mans toy tough.

  • buggerme

    If you’re comparing the players impact for next season compared to last, then it should have wilshere and podolski top easily. Ryo will only feature in cup games at most if he doesn’t go out on loan again. and ox should definitely be high up there too. Gervinho may even come to form, after a very slow first season. COYG

  • Rhyle

    zdzis…appreciate you taking the time to try and shape a measure response.

    Worth mentioning that I think ASIG meant no.10 as role for Rosicky rather than the literal number on his back…

    1. Lehmann v Chezzer is a one sided fight at this stage, heavily in favour of the German. He wasn’t perfect and Chezzer does have huge potential. He’s nowhere near Jens standard yet. Form in the latter stages of last season are a clear indication of that – but I’m hopeful we do have a future world-class keeper on our hands.
    2. I loved Lauren. Magic, under rated footballer with a tremendous attitude. Sagna…exactly the same but just more talented. Lauren was a Wenger experiment that worked – turned our new Vieira into a RB. Awesome.
    3. Not going to judge Santos on this season. I agree, too early. Although…two things stick out. His inability to last 90 mins and run more than 50 yards at a time…lol…I love his character and his application but he’s hardly the fittest. Cole was / is one of the best LBs the PL has ever seen. Cole v Gibbs / Santos is a no-contest…and I say that through gritted teeth ‘cos he’s a loathsome little so and so…
    4. Campbell / Toure v Kozzer / Verm. Weird as I think you make some good points here but it’s difficult to argue in favour of Koz / Verm as our defensive record with them at the heart of our defence has been pretty poor over the last couple of seasons. Important to say that I think this is more down to poor quality at LB and a lack of a disciplined DM, but Kozzer is capable of a real ricket now and again and Verm has offensive responsibilities as well as defensive ones, apparently, and is often caught out of position in the opponents last third. Great if Song was covering for him instead of trying to cross for him.
    5. Vieira v Song. Another no contest. I truly believe that Song has improved year-on-year over the last 3 years but is still nowhere near the standard of Vieira. He’s also not the disciplined DM that the team needs and we lack a Petit to sit in if he goes marauding forward a la Vieira…
    6. Pires. Outside of Liam Brady…Pires is the best LW the Arsenal have ever seen. ‘Nuff said. I’m not a naysayer when it comes to Gervinho…often one season does not a PL player make…but…come on…you’re comparing delivery and potential as if they’re the same thing, not just in this instance either.
    7. Fab v Arteta…you’re spot on, I don’t think the gap between the two is as far as people think, the main difference for me is that Fab could still potentially improve whereas Arteta is probably at the peak of his game.
    8. Henry v RVP. Again, ridiculously one sided. For all of his talent and success, RVP could only wish to have the goal scoring record of TH14. Thierry delivered consistently over an 8 year period. RVP has delivered consistently when he’s fit. It may be a distorted comparison on that basis…but I’m sure you’ll agree when I say that TH14 is the second best player I’ve ever seen in an Arsenal shirt.
    9. Ramsey / Rosicky would be a fairer comparison with Bergkamp as they play centrally and this is about the Arsenal starting XI in 2005. And that, sir, is the very definition of a no-contest. Greatest player to ever pull on an Arsenal shirt? IMHO…by a country mile…
    10. Ljungberg v Walcott is another knock-out in the first. Loved Freddie and his rapport with Dennis. Walcott…is frustrating. He’s been here far too long for us to still be saying “he’ll come good next year”. He has improved and I’m happy to have in the squad…I just wouldn’t start him over the Ox. He has one asset – his speed – and he seems reluctant to use it, preferring instead to use “trickery” to try and beat players and more often than not, running right into the defender.

    Think you argued eloquently but can’t agree with you with it being 8:5…primarily as there are only 11 starting spots and even if you do factor in other squad players, I could if I didn’t have to put the shopping away, argue that we had a deeper quality in the squad back in 2005. Potential does not equal delivery, and you talk an awful lot about the fact that they MAY BE good players, comparing them positively against players who DEFINITELY WERE good players.

    With regards to our recruitment / selling policy the problem is that we’re all too often selling players of proven quality and replacing them with youngsters who all too often turn out to be failed experiments. Even some of the so-called top drawer stars you mention have hardly set the world alight for us: Arshavin, Rosicky (patchy at best even when fully fit, his best performance coming against Spurs last year…a full 5 years after we signed him, no?!) and we’re yet to see the best (or anything, really) from Gervinho. It’s also strange that you’re only too happy to talk about a player like Gervinho’s potential benefits to the side next year…yet the idea of players who’ve delivered consistently in top leagues and the CL “might not work”? That, sir, is some strange argument…

    It’s a policy that’s seen us deteriorate from Invincibles to CL also-rans. From a CL final to the first knock-out stage. From beating Inter at the San Siro 5-2 to losing 4-0 to an average AC Milan side…

    Wanting better for the Arsenal in these terms, I feel is hardly “Anti-Arsenal Arsenal”…more pro-Arsenal, anti-current regime.

  • Rhyle

    Very quickly…what I believe we need next season:

    – Older head GK to compete with Chezzer and keep him on his toes.
    – LB
    – Disciplined DM
    – AM, preferably central. Arteta / Wilshere need a quality alternative…particularly as both have been injured at times this season and we’ve suffered because of it.
    – Winger. Either side. To replace Walcott. Gerv, Ox, Podolski plus one (god willing Gotze has a change of heart but I’d take Kagawa!) would give us options and quality and may even solve with the central AM.
    – CF. I don’t anyone would disagree that our options here are poor outside of RVP. I’d argue we’d need two but Podolski would be one of those. We still need a decent plan B as Bendtner and Chamakh have clearly worked too well for us in that regards and are now being head hunted by the top clubs in Europe…ahem…

    Don’t care how much they cost, but hope they’re all world class, top drawer players. Paying the most expensive ticket prices in world club sport means, for me, that we deserve to see investment in the playing side…I have two of the cheapest season tickets at the Emirates and was a little shocked to see that they’re more expensive than the dearest at Old Trafford…lol…

  • Scott

    Rhyle,can you compare Old Trafford to The Emirates…….it plays it’s part,so don’t pretend otherwise.

  • Georgaki


    What planet do you live on? Arsenal IS a business and you pay for it’s offerings i.e., entertainment. Once you have paid your money to watch the team that’s it. That’s the transaction. Why do you expect a say as to how the business should be run? I am staggered at what some people expect…..

  • Rhyle

    Scott…moot point that has little to do with the overall point I was making and ridiculous to point it out. The truth is it costs more for the cheap seats at the Emirates than it does for OT expensive seats.

    That’s a lot of points, I know…

  • Shard


    Have you been to Manchester? My guess is ManU charge people just about as much as they can afford to pay, and more. Being located in London means Arsenal’s ticket prices can’t be compared to clubs in the North. Compare them with Chelsea and Spurs ticket prices and it’ll be a more realistic comparison.

  • Rhyle

    Several times, Shard. As we all know, though, rarely do people in Manchester go to OT…lol…

    This “we’re in London” thing is used an excuse all too often – so are Fulham and QPR, so are West Ham.

    To be fair…on a cost per game basis…our most expensive STs are not as expensive as Chelsea’s or Spurs as we also get CL. But that, again, is not really the issue I’m highlighting. The investment in the squad v income IS.

    Why can’t anyone here address the points I really make rather than picking holes in minor statements within the overall comment? Odd.

  • Scott

    So paying for a stadium…the best in the world…is a moot point???
    Ok,I’m confused lol.
    Don’t be so sensitive.
    Anytime you post something on a public forum,you leave ourself open to being picked apart….happens to me,you,everyone.

  • Shard

    I wasn’t picking holes, I was making a point. Which you picked holes in and fair enough..Your straw man arguments of going from arguably the best team England has seen to ‘also rans’ is so moth ridden, picking holes in it is boring. Thank you, but no thanks to your generous offer of reading and then writing 1000 word theses on what the team needs etc when it’s all subjective and no one is going to convince anyone else, least of all someone as smug as you come across as. There’s nothing odd about that.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Maybe we wont sign anyone just to spite the AAA, because thats how they will take it!
    Just as well we did not sign the players some have linked us with in the past, or we could have the likes of..amongst others..Cana, Barton, Scot Parker, Babel (ok great tweet on Howard Webb)and Samba in our team. We really would be going places with that lot.

  • ARSENAL 13

    @Zdzis, spot on..

    We dont need big name signings. We have a good squad and I see a few big names coming through the setup. All we need is back ups, the ones who can jump of the bench and still, maintain the solidity of the team.

    Therz nothing wrong if Stan keeps his pockets shut. I would like to see ARSENAL work with its own money.

    off topic….Chelsea situation, therz no manager and still they sign a couple of players.

  • Matt Clarke


    You made the statement – don’t hide behind the “adderess my main point” defence.

    If you wanted just the main argument addressed then don’t add on other stuff.

    And by the way, I agree totally about DB.

  • Rhyle

    Matt…it was only a minor point within a major one…hate it when people pick on small things and ignore the overall picture. I think that’s fair enough?

  • Scott

    Ok Rhyle…
    I don’t believe we need a LB.
    I do believe we need a defensive minded DM.
    I do believe we need a CAM.
    Another striker would be nice,but a necessity is RVP leaves.
    Your original post didn’t consist of one main point,but lots of smaller ones.
    I hope I’ve now addressed them all to your liking.
    Now,would you return the favour and explain why you believe that paying for a fantastic stadium is irrelevant please??

  • Rhyle

    Shard @ 11:16…sound argument, “boring” being exactly what I am, I’m aware of my own failings…lol…but I’m also right.

    You’ve failed to prove otherwise, using terms like “straw man argument” and then failing to back it up with anything meaningful…as for calling me smug…not really. Well..occasionally…but not now. Think that might be you being dumb as a bag of bells and unable to come up with anything approaching intelligible. But thanks for playing, ass.

  • Rhyle

    Never said it was irrelevant…not once…merely that it was overstated. There’s money there, clearly. It’s on the record from both board and manager. We just don’t spend it. That’s why it’s relevance is overstated.

    The stadium is not an excuse the board ever use…especially with how far down the line we are and the fact that we’re very profitable…I’m always amazed that some fans use it as an excuse.

  • Shard

    Dumb as a bag of bells? That’s a new one. Ass.. What else? Ok now I feel more inclined to actually try and burn your straw you attention whore.. Oh talk to me talk to me.. I made such an awesome point that others have to disprove because by me stating it it automatically reaches that stature.And its so odd that no one rises to that challenge. Guess they must just be dumb. Like a bag of bells at that.

    But I’m also right–that statement sums you up. Who says you are right? What proves you are right? Right about what for that matter? Because all you did was ramble on about some areas we need to strengthen (not all of which I disagree with) and about how we pay the highest prices in the world and so deserve the bestest world classest team that money can buy. Who decides who is world class? You? the media?

  • Scott

    Moot point….irrelevant… relation between the two there……ok then lol.
    You read what you want and hear what you want….and I actually think you believe what our coughing up at us.
    Wenger said that we need to make an annual profit of 15 – 20 million per year.
    Our tickets cost more.
    We have a fantastic stadium.
    Somebody must pay for that stadium.
    Probably those using the bloody thing,surprise,surprise.
    I never once used It as an excuse as to why we finished third,or haven’t signed Eden Hazard,or anything else your broad but inaccurate comment may suggest.
    I raised it as ONE factor in why tickets cost more at The Emirates than Old Trafford….ONE factor.
    Stop misquoting,misunderstanding and plain old MISSING the bloody point.

  • Rhyle

    Oh…and maybe to explain it a bit better…my original post had ONE theme…that of the idiotic use of the AAA to define anything you don’t agree with. I then highlighted why I thought you were wrong to use it with smaller points building and contributing to the whole to demonstrate one thing: criticising The current out of a desire to make a better is not “anti-Arsenal” but “pro-Arsenal”

    Hope that’s better.

  • Savage

    We should definitely have signed Savic.

    Honestly, I think Arsene’s policy has really shifted recently, so I really don’t know how this season’s spending is going to pan out. All this blame of capitalism and board mongering is panic stations. Known of us really know what’s going to happen, which is why it’s an exciting off-season.

  • zdzis

    Back to the squad part:
    Ad 1. Lehmann was a good established keeper who was not above making huge blunders, as much as he was able to deliver the magic sometimes. He worked with a solid back 4, quite tough for the time. And he did reasonably well. Szczesny is a good keeper with huge potential, who is not above making huge blunders, but is able to deliver the magic sometimes. He works with a back 4 that is taking a long time to gel, dealing with a lot of injuries, and a number of players who obviously need time to fit at Arsenal. I really believe you’re judging him merely by the number of goals conceded. In my opinion, it’s a mistake.
    I won’t debate your love of Lauren, although I think you should review his performance during his stint at Arsenal.
    Ad 3. You’re not going to judge Santos by last season, but that’s just what you’re doing… He came in from Turkey and took several weeks to achieve proper match fitness, which says something about the physical level of the Turkish league. Then, just when he was slotting in just fine, he grabbed an injury, missed several months of play, and came back just after his recovery cause Gibbs was unfit. You thought he’d be making 20 miles a game right after an injury? Really, we should all give him a chance to show what he’s made of. No contest to Cole A.D. 2005, of course.
    Ad 4. You clearly show the problem is not with our centre-halfs. Thanks. Koscielny’s blunders were few and far between this season. Vermaelen got caught out of position because we lacked stability in the middle – too little cover at the back, too little support and vision at the front. Not his fault most of the time.
    Ad 5. (Almost) 100% agreed.
    Ad 6. Not exactly: I DO agree no contest, BUT I still think Gerv needs the same as Santos does: time. And that’s all we need to have a quality winger. Will he ever be better than Pires? I guess not, but I can see him coming close.
    Ad 8. It’s a mistake to compare an entire output of a legend to several seasons in the career of a contemporary star. Ever seen RVP play? The style is different, but he has command, drive, vision, and a killer left foot. If you do it like you’re inclined to, you’ll end up comparing Cristiano Ronaldo to Eusebio – or Pele, for that matter. How many WM titles has CR got? It’s easy to laugh a player off for not being a legend when he’s only reached his peak. It’s 1:1 for me – we’re looking at two players of equal value to their teams and an equal ability to cash in on that value, that’s all.
    Ad 9. I didn’t mention Bergkamp because he didn’t feature as often for Arsenal as Pires or Reyes, either of whom played behind TH in 2004-05 and 2005-06. That’s all.
    Ad 10. OK, but, as you say, it’s more a question of personal views than a question of output.

    As for the score being 8:5 in favour of Arsenal A.D. 2005, that’s a result of several comparisons ending in a draw.
    The MAY BE v. DEFINITELY WERE issue: I actually talked about potential mostly in relation to Szczesny, Santos and Gervinho; of those, only Szczesny “scored” in my comparison. So I’ll let that pass as over-eagerness on your part.

    The argument about “players who’ve delivered consistently in top leagues and the CL [who] ‘might not work'” – What I mean is buying a Hulk, a Pastore, a Goetze (I don’t know why you revere him so highly, I don’t think I ever saw a more overrated player – except perhaps Gary Cahill), might not in itself lead to fantastic results, but will cost the club in excess of 50 million pounds. I don’t think the game’s worth it. This is not to say I like all the club’s doing; I do think we could do a little better, and I think we could use upping our stakes, which is what I meant by taking up players valuated at around 20 million. The fact that “star” transfers to Arsenal have sometimes failed also shows that the club might be better off being highly selective of the recognized names on their transfer list – we need stars, but we need to assess our needs properly.
    But most of all, Arsenal can’t afford getting onto the market operated by the likes of Real, Man City, Chelsea, and now PSG. Not as a self-sufficient operation that wants to pay the cost of Emirates by itself, according to plan.
    I do agree with your assessment of the missing players in the squad, but I also think some of the voids will be filled differently. You can have a winger who can double as an AM; You can have an LB who can double as DM. And so on, and so on. In my opinion, we NEED 2-3 players: definitely a DM to cover for Song going forward, perhaps a LB who could play all across the defence, and – if necessary – a CF. Only the DM is mandatory because there’s currently no player at Arsenal who could fill that slot. The other two are options – if we don’t get them now, we may still compete with the best, but we’ll run the risk of being short on quality as the season wears on.

  • Matt Clarke

    I was working in Bradford recently (which I understand is somewhere Up North) and had to stay overnight.

    I and my colleague went out to get an evening meal. I paid for both and it cost £11.50.


    Where I live (Dahn Sarf) it would have cost more than that for one meal.

    So I do think that you do have to consider that in the season ticket prices: four of the top five prices are for London clubs and three of the bottom four are clubs in Lancashire.

    PS I was surprised at how pleasant Bradford was.

  • Scott

    Rule,you’ve made this a storm in a teacup.
    Where did i mention AAA or anyone else??
    This whole thing escalated because you took me to task for picking on one little part of your entire point,yet now you had one THEME made up with lots of little points,which was EXACTLY MY POINT!!!
    Get over yourself….you’ve admitted to being wrong,so get on with it.

  • Savage


    Agreed on Gerv – if he does add goals to his game (big “if” obviously), then he will be one of the best in the league. I love watching him play, but like everyone, we know the one area of his game that is currently his shortfall.

    Goals change fans’ opinions VERY quickly. It took ONE goal against Spurs to completely turn Rosicky’s image around, and I’m expecting Ramsey to make that shift soon. Gerv is next in line…

  • Scott

    I’m with you Savage…..I’m tipping Gervinho to prove a terrific player next season.
    Ramsey has been trough a lot,and really ran out of legs towards the end of the season.
    It takes a good,solid 18 months to get back to best after such an injury,and he was probably overused through necessity early on this season.
    With a good offseason,he may well come back he player we all thought he’d be.
    He deserves it.

  • Savage

    I still have Ramsey’s drive against Portsmouth fresh in my mind, so I’m a little bit surprised at the number of times he’s blasted over the bar. I’m genuinely expecting his goalscoring form to change.

  • Shard

    I just went back and looked at your ‘original post’ Rhyle. It did not have ONE theme as saying we shouldn’t use terms like the AAA for those that criticise.

    For that matter I prefer to not use the term AAA myself, because I don’t like to generalise arguments. However, it is probably a term borne out of convenience. The responses I’ve seen on this site and others of people who profess comments against the manager/board etc are quite often shown up as lacking the ability/desire to THINK about why any cause for frustrations they feel, shouting down other people, believing everything the media says or what rival players say as long as it’s showing the club in a poor light and generally seem to spend more time being angry about everything that the club does whether it merits it or not, and make any argument to undermine the club’s achievements, regardless of the logic involved. Rather than write that long (or longer) a description for someone every time, I suppose the term AAA is easier and gets the message across.

    You also then proceeded to list ‘issues’ with the club which should lead us to demand ‘change’. You don’t list what change it is exactly that you’d like BY wenger if not OF him. (this you proceeded to do later by your talk of world class players, stadium prices and then drawing a one to one relation between the two)

    Your original post also insulted Tony and by extension the readers of this blog by using the word ignorant, and then you yourself sum up your post by giving the quote about good and evil. Though to be fair you did say it is overstating it, but what you have done is mistake support, for a demand for status quo in ALL ways, and you have shown yourself to believe to be fighting the GOOD fight against the EVIL in place at Arsenal. That to me, DOES show smugness and like Scott said, a tendency to believe whatever you want so that you can convince yourself you are correct. And you seem to always end your posts in a rude way. ‘Ignorance is bliss. Why do people never respond to what I want them to respond to. Odd.’

    You Rhyle have shown yourself up as an idiot. Even though you don’t write the same way as some people we have on here, you are still as rude, and your idiocy is even higher because you actually demonstrate the capacity to think but evidently never use it. There.. I hope that response satisfies your need to be acknowledged. (even if it is being acknowledged as an idiot)

  • Shard

    Agree with Scott and Savage on Gervinho. I think his second season with us will prove better. Or at least I hope. There is enough ability there to give me that hope. Wenger made Adebayor into a decent finisher. If he can do that for Gervinho, we’ll have a very good player on our hands.

    Ramsey might take longer to reach his potential. I think he’s not ready to be the main guy in the team. The main creative burden in midfield might prove too much for him. If Rosicky, Wilshere or someone else can provide that I think Ramsey can contribute a lot. His goalscoring will come. Remember Cesc’s finishing the year before he suddenly went on a scoring spree? Ramsey definitely has a shot on him and he will score goals. He also can spot a pass. But like I said. I think he needs to be a secondary creative force for him to flourish

  • Shard

    What I am worried about (and also why I think we should buy a DM) is that we’ll lose Song (along with Gervinho) to the Africa Nations Cup for two months. We were lucky Cameroon missed out on qualification last year and that Song didn’t get injured. Coquelin is very very good, but I think we might need someone else in there.

  • Scott

    Shard,he’s gone mate…tail between the legs.
    Ramsey needs time. He should have been eased back into the first team football,but injuries ruined that,and then he simply ran out of legs towards he end.
    He will most definitely be a better player next season,and I’d gladly put money on that.
    His other problem was listenining to everyone telling him he’d be Cescs replacement.
    He never wll be…he’s a different type of player….and should never attempt to be.
    Wengers patience will be rewarded.

  • Savage

    Re Ramsey being the main player, I don’t ever think he will be. Jack, yes, but not Ramsey – I expect him to be a supporting act. I don’t think he has the raw ability to be a world star in the midfield, but if he can score goals then he’ll make one helluva contribution along the way.

    Ramsey is good enough for the current Arsenal, but in terms of where we want to go, to find that inate quality you’re more likely to be looking at Ox and Jack.

    I know some are writing off Song in a more forward role, but I personally think there might be something there.

  • Rhyle

    Nope…just got other things to do now and then…

    Suggest you learn to read a bit more better and stuff…if you can’t see my point about the way we’re run and wanting better being linked to your use of AAA, that is…

    My original point was made to no poster but the site in general. I then challenged someone to prove my anti-Wenger standpoint incorrect but highlighting why I’m against current policy…finishing with the point I’ve made repeatedly that wanting positive change is pro-Arsenal.

    You are right…I come with no solutions. There’s a growing presence on some websites for some sort of organised protest. This is pointless without an objective…and I’m against. However, dressing s*** up as shinola is equally as futile. There are problems with this club that need addressing. The only Two things I can nameatthis stage is how the money is distributed at the club, both in terms of transfer spend and wages.

    You’re resorting to insults, which is less than brilliant. Have a look at zdzis…I don’t have to agree with you, you don’t have to agree with me – but at least come up with something with more than a seconds thought put into it.

    We’re all Arsenal fans, regardless of perspective, all of us in our own way want what’s best for the club.

    My original comment was aimed at the site in general and the use of the term AAA. NO ONE has addressed anything remotely connected with what I posted. Who is the idiot?

    Now…will have to love you and leave you…going to spend some time with my family. I have a new 6 day old son. Robert…after Pires and Savage…lol…

  • Rhyle

    And I never said anyone was ignorant wholesale…again, learn to read. I said the use of the term AAA WAS IGNORANT.

  • Shard

    Song has always had the ability to pick a pass. It’s just that we notice it more now, and he’s had some high profile assists. I don’t think however that he can play that role consistently. what I do think is that we do not confine ourselves to defined roles. Song is not a DM. He can tackle well enough, he is strong and tough to get the ball off and reads the game ok. He can also pass, can play the through balls (think he has the most in the LEAGUE) can dribble a bit and maybe can also score. Still, I think his ability to pick a pass is also because he’s doing it from a deeper position than say Rosicky, which means he generally has more time. I think Song/Arteta, Song/Coquelin provide a decent shield for the back four with enough in them to also contribute in forward areas. Buying a new DM shouldn’t mean Song moves further up the field. It might give him the opportunity to express himself more from his current position.

    Ramsey is more a box to box midfielder I think. I think he does have the ability to be a star player. I think he can provide a lot of goals with his late runs into the box, which actually he times pretty well, as well as shooting from outside. He can also pull out some wonderful passes. I think a Steven Gerrard type player is what he is. Not a Cesc.

  • Savage

    Not sure that Ramsey has the speed for box to box, but I agree that he should be playing the Scholes role with late runs. We have two players with a fantastic ability to drive to the line and cut back (Gerv and Theo) and I think we’ve always come short when it comes to cut-backs and placement to the back of the box rather than the front. This is particularly an issue when you have the forward heavily marked, taking two CBs out.

    Classic example is the Barca goal, with RVP pulling defenders out and AA running in late. That my friends is what I want to see from Ramsey. I am confident it will come.

  • Savage

    Re Song playing more forward, here is my motivation:
    – ability to shuffle through crowds
    – talent for surging runs, which aren’t really allowed for a dedicated DM
    – can look up and hit a long pass in a short space of time (see Theo’s 5th vs Spurs and Santos vs Chelsea)
    – physical presence, important for taking on an opposing DM near the box

    The one thing I’d ask for still is the ability for long-range goals. I still suspect Wenger actively discourages it, but it’s been a sore point for some time. The only players doing it are older players who have come from other clubs.

  • WalterBroeckx

    As some have been talking about the current players and the invincibles:

    On Szczesny his late season performances: he was injured but kept playing
    On Vermaelen his late season performances: he was injured but kept playing

    By the way a lot of the invincibles were getting a bit older and had to go after a while

  • Scott

    But,but,but Rhyle,you STILL fail to address my POINT……..
    You’re very selfish…….begging with us to take heed of your comments,yet ignoring ours.

    One thing rarely,if ever mentioned on Ramsey is the amount of shots he has.
    Yes,he misses plenty,but how many midfielders in the league are good enough or smart enough to get into a goal scoring position as he is???
    If and when he can improve that,he could be an absolute sensation.

  • Scott

    Walter,some would still have Henry,Vieira and Bergkamp running around now.
    Though,this would have them then complaining about spending some effing money lol.

  • Gerry Lennon

    Thanks gents, I enjoyed that ‘debate’. Just following up on the last point on Ramsey. My own view is that he should have a loan spell, possibly abroad, so he can develop his game properly. Not be squeezed into a box that is the wrong size. Arsenal play best on quick passing, I believe he will do better in a team that builds steadily. Yes, he has a good pass, but he all too often needs too long before he plays it. Confidence will improve his shooting. I am not convinced he will anticipate a pass before the ball arrives? That is the type of player we need now, and what we have missed since Cesc left.

  • Savage

    Hmm, not so sure about a loan spell for Ramsey. Sending him on loan would say he’s not good enough for the Arsenal – great way to knock his confidence.

    And you use the issue of confidence correctly – when his goal drought breaks he’ll be a different player. There are some players like Gerv for whom you don’t know if they’ll come right. Ramsey is not one of those – he will come right 🙂

  • Rhyle

    Scott…would be happy to address your points if a) you had one or b) they were remotely connected to what I’m talking about.

  • Scott

    Rhyle,you’ve admitted you were wrong,you haven’t addressed my valid point,so just move on because I’m done wasting my time over a pigheaded,ignorant tosser such as yourself.

  • Scott

    Savage,I’d be easing him into first team football.
    Bring him in as a sub early on until his confidence and form are at a level to warrant a start.

  • Rhyle

    Where did I admit I was wrong?!

  • Rhyle

    And there we have it, by the way. Resorting to insults. My money’s on you…way to prove your point.

    Stay classy, Scott.

  • Scott

    Rhyle,I’m sorry,but logic doesn’t get through your skull,so I was hoping insults would.
    I doubt a baseball would dent that solid piece of bone lol.
    Ok,one more time for you….are you ready….here it comes,but its getting boring for us all… carefully this time….Your main point was followed by lots of little points until you told us it was little points making up one theme…….yes,that’s an admission by default that your original comment was incorrect.
    I’m truly,truly sorry if you do not understand that…I really am.
    Anyway,seriously,this is my last comment directed at you,or in response to you so again I ask you move on…… is way too short to waste on you.

  • Shard

    It seems like the troll machines have moved on and become more sophisticated. Rhyle might be the prototype for the next gen troll. Talks in a language which is more human, but has the same pigheadedness and ignores whatever you may say it to him calling it irrelevant. No Scott. You are wrong. This sort of ‘person’ isn’t programmed to admit any mistakes of his own, but to point out mistakes in others while putting himself on a higher pedestal.

    Resorting to insults when they are justified is…well….justified. Can’t say you haven’t earned them Rhyle. Actually scratch that. You CAN say that. Like I’m sure you’ll proceed to demonstrate now.

  • All posters – please try to remember that the comments section isn’t exclusively about you, your opinion or your concerns – it should be in some way related to the topic of the post.


  • Rhyle

    There is logic and an opinion and there’s a logical argument…there is a difference between the two.

    Sorry you feel I deserve insults…clearly you’ve been awesome and demonstrated how wrong I am inspite of having a completely different conversation to the one I was intent on having. Well played, sirs….well played indeed.


  • Rhyle

    Dogface…my original comment was mildly connected to the post and the use of the term AAA…LOL…

  • Shard

    Conversation you intended to have probably ran something like

    Rhyle: You guys are ignorant. You shouldn’t call someone names.

    Us: Well yeah..Actually you are right. We shouldn;t do that. We’re so ignorant as you said.

    Rhyle: Change is needed at Arsenal. We need to lower ticket prices or buy world class players. A team of stars. A galaxy of galacticos.
    Us: But what about the stadium and the commercial aspect?

    Rhyle: That is irrelevant. It wasn’t part of what I said.
    Us: Yes. Of course. I don’t know why we said that. You are awesome Rhyle. Where have you been all these years? Wish we had your brains, smarts AND looks. You’re the whole package Rhyle. You aren’t needy at all.

    Rhyle: Yes. And you bellends and asses should remember never to insult people. Especially me.
    Us: So it shall be done.

  • Scott

    🙂 Shard.
    Dogface,fair call…..

  • Rhyle

    …got cut off mid flow, apparently…apologies if it’s a gotten a bit complicated. Been fun, though.

    Zdzis, and a couple of others…enjoyed it…

    Scott and a couple of others…been emotional…you’re as bad as the more militant / emotional elements o places like Le Grove…you’re just the other side of the coin…

  • Rhyle

    Shard. Exactly right….lol…or not. Depending if you read it…or understood it. It’s not exactly rocket science so I hope it’s the former. And you really, REALLY haven’t bee as polite in your responses to me as you think.

  • Scott

    Shard,see you on Evorg EL…….

  • Rhyle

    Scott…what’s evorg EL? Wait…no…you CAN’T HAVE! Awesome!!!

  • It can go off on tangents – and that is quite fun, but it should be a sharing experience – when it gets a bit bitter and/or when people can’t agree to differ it does rather put off anyone else from chipping in.


  • Scott

    It’s always good to have a two sided debate based on facts and logic,it its not always possible,unfortunately.
    Anyway,Which striker is coming…Doumbia,Giroud,Gameiro,Llorente????

  • WalterBroeckx

    Scott good point about Ramsey and if I may add: He will improve his goal scoring and then he will be a 15 goal midfielder each season.

    How many still remember the days that Cesc scored 2 or 3 goals a season? Just check his stats if you want. If you compare him (taking 1.5 year away from his age because of injury) he is at the same point where Cesc was at 18-19 years. That year Cesc had 3 goals 2 assists in the PL.
    This year Ramsey has 2 goals and 6 assists in the PL.

    Why don’t we just be patient a bit and wait till Wenger has brought the best out of him?

  • Matt Clarke

    I agree with Walter about Ramsey just needing more time.

    On top of the injury there was the death of Gary Speed last November. It was he who appointed Ramsey as Wales captain.

  • Scott

    I watch AFL a fair bit….Aussie Rules…..and there are a hell of a lot of bad,long term leg injuries in that sport.
    I’ve seen enough to come to the conclusion that after a player gets back in the field,it’s around the 18 month mark when they’re back to their best.
    Again,poor old Aaron wasn’t eased back in,as due to injuries he was thrown back in.
    He’s had a tough enough period and worked his backside off whenever called on to deserve more respect than having idiots booing him,and people that will never play professional tiddlywinks,let alone football,to “hope he breaks he leg again so we don’t have to watch him play for Arsenal”.
    He ran out of steam towards he end of the season,and is form really did suffer.
    He will improve immensely next season,and be even better the season after.

  • Matt Clarke

    Going back, if I may, to earlier comments on Gervinho:

    Interesting to see what Eden Hazard is reported to have said about him…

  • Rhyle

    I hope Hazard is right and Sixhead is that talented…only caught glimpses of brilliance so far but even Pires took 12 months to settle in to the PL…

    Hazard has only been in the 5 mins to be fair…and at a decent Lille side and the Belgian national side. Both decent but not exactly overflowing with top drawer talent!

  • Goona Gal

    I quite enjoyed watching the England Vs Belgium game. Alex OC did quite well and I found myself thinking ‘what if’ about Lil Jack! AOC, Wilshere and Theo would make the England team a lot stronger. Scott Parker is becoming a mystery to me, as I can’t work out why the midfielder is not lambasted for constantly playing the ball backwards to defenders and stunts play going forward. Like he did at the Emirates he put in loads of dodgy tackles and threw himself about in front of the ball.

    According to the match commentator, Andy Townsend this was MotM stuff??? Gerrard rightly got it but I have to say Lescott was a close second as he is probably the best England defender at the moment. Rooney was anonymous and Defoe and Theo had a much bigger impact when they came on.

    As for Hazard, I have now seen him play four times and I am still waiting to be wow’d by him. I hope he has signed that contract with Chelsea because that was not a £40m performance – or maybe that is what £40m gets you nowadays? I said I wasn’t sure about him ages ago when people were screaming about his Arsenal transfer story link in December. The Premiership is quick and tough, Hazard will not get the protection or time on the ball that he is accustomed to.

    Ramsey, Rosicky, Jack and Arteta are better and stronger players but that won’t stop fans from lambasting Arsene Wenger where ever he ends up. Hazard’s game would suit Spain or Italy, but I am guessing that the Premiership holds the most financial appeal. Anything less that 20+ goals and 10 assists will make him a failure now that he has built himself up.

  • Matt Clarke

    I’d love to see the backwards pass banned from football 😀

  • Scott

    I think Hazard is an enormous prospect,but the hype surrounding him is what forced he price up more so than the talent.
    If Wenger was to spend 30-35 million,it cold be spent better elsewhere based on what Arseal need.
    Keep in mind he’s lung though,so don’t judge of harshly.
    I watched Australia v Denmark last night,so obviously was keen to see Eriksen.
    After about twenty minutes I’m thinking he’s done bugger all.
    Right on cue he chimes in with simply one of he best back heels you wll ever see to set up a teammate.
    That and a 40 metre pass landed within an inch of its target showed exactly how much skill and vision the guys has.
    We must take into account their age,and give allowances for the fact that any of them..add Neymar and Gotze to the list….will take time to acclimatise to the PL,if they in fact play there.
    Oh,and Gervinho has everything he needs….time and patience will be rewarded.

  • Scott

    He’s actually YOUNG,not lung……

  • Goona Gal

    @ Scott, to me Ramsey, Alex OC, Campbell and Ryo look like enormous young prospects. Hazard is a good player but I haven’t seen enough so far to put him in the amazing category that has people salivating madly. With his reputed requested wages, attitude and price tag, I would expect him to deliver right away.

    I watched Neymar and Gotze once and they both stood out as very talented players. I will admit that I don’t know too much about Eriksen, but I will be watching Denmark in the hope that Bendtner does enough to send his sale price back up, so I will look out for Eriksen while I am at it.

  • Goona Gal

    Dembele looked very useful and an alternative to Song in midfield.

  • Arun

    I think that Jan Vertonghen had a good game and looks a talented player to me. As for Hazard, this was the first time I was seeing him but I wasn’t quite impressed by him. If he doesn’t have an immediate impact on his arrival, he may become yet another Torres due to his high transfer fee.

  • WalterBroeckx

    Or Hazard being a second Lukaku? Just wait when he gets benched against his will or substituted against his will… How are the hamburgers at Chelsea? We could ask Hazard to do the food articles 😉

  • Scott

    Hazard has talked himself up,so has really put unwanted pressure on himself.
    He has all the talent in the world,but it takes more than that,and if he doesn’t perform straight away,then he will look an idiot.
    Hes got the massive transfer fee and wage to warrant being a world class player,so none of this crap about settling in,not at 32 million.
    I’m happy to admit that,until a few weeks back,I wanted him at Arsenal.
    That was purely based on his ability and performances I’d seen.
    The more I read about his attitude and comments attributed to him,the less I wanted him to the point where I’d have been pissed off if we got him
    People blaming Wenger for not wanting to spend the money should realise that we did make a 30 million plus offer for Gotze,so yes,he WILL spend the money on the right player.
    Simply because of his attitude,Hazard isnt the right player.
    Goonagal,Eriksen isn’t hyped quite as much,and again,he was quiet last it,but those glimpses of quality were simply world class…..he’s only a kid,too,so it needs to be taken into account.
    He’s exactly the type of player Wenger would turn into a superstar.
    His attitude,too is perfect.
    A few years back he trialled with Chelsea but decided to go to Ajax as he was determined to take small steps and build his performance level before going to a massive club in a massive league.
    Oh,and Johann Cruyff reckons he’s one of the best he’s ever seen at that age.
    One last thing,the kid from Sao Paulo,Lucas,is a superstar waiting to happen.
    Can’t remember wich club,but they’ve had a 19 million bid knocked back.
    If you could get him for 25,he’d be a steal,IMO.

  • goonergerry

    Tony thanks for the award-I will treat is a badge of honour-coming from you. I am sure it will be very popular with Walter and your band of followers.

    Perhaps the biggest misnomer is the claim repeatedly made by Tony is that the largely orthodox AKB views published on this site are open to debate. It isn’t and you aren’t-you and the regular contributors on this site simply insult people who disagree with you.

    There is a rumour doing the rounds that this site is sponsored by AFC is that so? No I am not making this up. If its your intention to just trot out the AFC BoD party line-then why bother? we can go to

    JJ- a comment not worthy of response.

    Georgaki- I will admit that if the business model-the pure business model is the only way to run a football club-then as a fan you cannot expect to have any real say in how its run. Open your eyes and your mind because it isn’t. Perhaps ypu don’t like democracy? I don’t like dictators personally.

    Some of us would like to see a higher percentage of our clubs’ revenue spent on bringing established players to the club although last year was at least a step in the right direction-but we get what we are given-and sometimes we never get told why decisions are made let alone get given a chance to contribute towards them.

    Rhyle is right-right about the use of the term AAA on this site, right overall in his current assessment of players, right in the view of our playing strength since 2005. That is my opinion. I know many Arsenal fans who agree with him. That doesn’t make him right or wrong.
    What is Scotts point? You complain about Rhyle not acknowledging your point when you haven’t acknowledged his.

    Why did Arsenal finish third this year-after conceding 49 goals and finishing 19 points behind the second club? Because we conserved our strength by going out of all cup competitions early, because Chelsea had a duff manager for 2/3rds of the season and because of Arry’s interest in the England job- and most of all because RVP played in every game. With regards to the latter yes we were lucky-but I am glad we were. Third was a great achievement in view of our injuries and playing strength.

  • Gooner Gerry, let me try and give you a simple response.

    If you want to criticise the whole notion of Untold, that’s ok, many people do. But to do so effectively you need to know what Untold is up to. It is not like criticising a viewpoint in an article in which you read the article and then point out the logical errors, or factual errors. To criticise the whole of Untold you need to do some work – just as if I wanted to do a wholesale attack on the Liberal Democrats, or a detailed analysis of the music of Bob Dylan. These things take time and effort.

    If you try and attack Untold without that effort then the results are uninspiring. As in this case

    You said

    There is a rumour doing the rounds that this site is sponsored by AFC is that so? No I am not making this up. If its your intention to just trot out the AFC BoD party line-then why bother? we can go to

    Your statement suggests that you believe we might not know this. And yet on Untold there is an article “Where’s my money” which deals with this allegation.

    That’s why your larger scale comments are not really helpful – you have not done the basic homework. Here’s a bit of that article

    …they both tell me, day after day after day after day after day after day after day after day that Untold writers are paid by Arsenal to write our stuff.

    Even one of our old pals who used to write that hilarious set of commentaries which no one could understand – he says it. Untold is paid for by Arsenal!

    Believe me (and I only know because I have written a number of books that really dig into specific issues in this way) it takes time, and if you don’t do it you end up looking a trifle foolish.

  • Scott

    Goonergerry,I suggest you get down from your throne and actually read exactly what took place app. 24 hours ago before laying any blame with me.
    I questioned ONE of Rhyles points,of which there were many,and he took offence to it by suggesting I ignored the one point his post made whilst focusing on something irrelevant.
    I replied that his post was filled with several small points,asked him to leave it alone on several occasions yet he continued it.
    Say what you like as an opinion,but to point blank lie is simply showing what you are here for.
    Oh,and for the record,Rhyle then acknowledged that his post had one theme but several points,so explain how you could attempt to defend him after his admission??
    Also for the record,I am not an Arsene Wenger disciple.
    I believe he makes plenty of errors,but I also believe he’s still the best man for the job.
    People like you can’t acknowledge anything he does right…signing Ox is a quick one….and the comments directed at me and the names ive been called on sites you no doubt frequent make last night look like a kids food fight.

  • That reminds me Tony… where is my money?

  • Stuart

    I agree with Georgaki with regard to AFC being a footballing business.

    Please, clear up for me why you think it is any other way?? Why should anyone who has spent Miilions/Billions on owning a business not do things the way they want?

  • Goalmouth

    Well it’s certainly Goodbye RVP,and welcome Crewe’s £10m-rated, 18-year-old striker Nick Powell.. Does love a youngster that Wenger!!Somethings never change….

  • TommieGun

    Hazard to me is like Lebron James, with the “decision” TV programme. He is a little twirp, and I really hope that the “robustness” (oh now its nice to use this word) of the PL will curb some, if not more than some, of his enthusiasm. And just like Lebron showed everybody that he was a big p***y, crapping his pants in the big occassions, I predict (and hope) that the same fate will be shared by Hazard.

    I thought about Ramsey a lot this season – mostly bad thoughts, mostly “what the hell are you doing lad” thoughts. He seemed to me, more often than the rest of the guys, on another planet. Something of a Torres-esqe quality of detachment. And yesterday I thought about the reason – I think I know what it is: Gary Speed’s suicide. Ramsey the national Wales captain, very close to his manager, was shattered, and correct me if I’m wrong – since that day, has not really returned psychologically.

    Re the Ryhle v. the rest of the world thing – guys, he had a point, even though he came accross as arrogant etc. Its being as un-liberal and close minded as the dumb-spend-spend-spend AAA talkback writers, to read someone’s comments but not REALLY read them. And unfortunately that’s what happened here. Everything should be judged on its merits, being a fanatic is just useless.

  • TommieGun

    I only posted to get some money, too. BTW.

  • Rhyle

    At this point I’d like to point I never attacked UA as a whole…which is what I think Tony’s response to my post addressed…again, wasn’t my point…just it’s use of AAA as an offensive catch-all to belittle anyone who disagreed with the pro-Wenger stance on here without having to put forward any kind of meaningful rebuttal.


    Sorry to shout and all…but I’ve really enjoyed trading blows with some of the more reasonable amongst you, including Tony.

  • GiantGooner

    Re Doumbia, Jen Chang (then at SI, now Head of Communications for Liverpool) was discussing him a lot on Twitter earlier in the year. Apparently the reason he wasn’t getting many bites from PL clubs is because people don’t believe his listed age. He’s had a hard time getting caps for Cote d’Ivoire (of course the presence of a certain Didier Drogba has a lot to do with that) – but Gervinho is one of the stars of that squad and he struggled Year 1 at Arsenal (I remain optimistic that he’ll be better next year) so lets not get too excited about Doumbia