Arsenal signing 80 players this transfer window?

By Walter Broeckx

Yesterday someone who writes for a another website said to me that in the last summer transfer window Arsenal had been linked with some 150 players. 150 players. Hundred and fifty that is. We bought 3 players in reality.

Compare those numbers: 150 rumours – 3 bought actually. This is pure madness. This most and for all shows how much rubbish goes around during a transfer window. One could say that they need around 50 rumours to have one correct.

But please don’t let that stop some of you  from taking every rumour as true.

Apparently there are a few favourites this transfer window. And of course the same names from the last transfer window get mentioned again. This is what I could find and have read in the last hour from the last weeks:

  1. Mignolet from Sunderland
  2. Reina from Liverpool
  3. Iker Casillas from Real Madrid
  4. Baines from Everton
  5. Taye Taiwo from AC Milan
  6. Mario Gotze from Dortmund
  7. Nani from Manchester United
  8. Hatem Ben Arfa from Newcastle
  9. Wilfried Zaha from Crystal Palace
  10. Adrian Lopez from Atletico Madrid
  11. Fellaini from Everton
  12. Napoli wing-back Juan Zuniga and Colombian international
  13. James McCarthy from Wigan
  14. David Villa from Barcelona
  15. Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa from Montpellier
  16. Ferando Llorente from Bilbao
  17. Victor Wanyama from Celtic
  18. Luke Young from Plymouth
  19. Luke Shaw from Southampton
  20. Loic Remy from Marseille
  21. Thierry Henry on loan again.

That is 21 names so far. And we are only January 8, which happens to be the birthday of Adrian Lopez. So we wish him a new contract of course.

If they keep it up like that we will be linked with some 80 players this short transfer window. And we only have 25 places in the squad.

All jokes aside. I think the media are not doing enough. They could do better. Only 21 players linked to Arsenal. That is poor.

Why don’t they mention Lucas Biglia anymore? Don’t they know that he refused to go to the winter training camp with his team Anderlecht? He stayed in Argentina where he was for the festive period and wants to get a transfer away from the Belgium champions. So where are the rumours linking him with Arsenal? He has been linked before so why not jump on to this? And where is M’Villa in all these rumours or did I miss him?

Now in a way it could be funny, all these rumours. I usually laugh with them and shake my head and think: oh well. But the problem is that all these rumours bring expectations.

If you hear the same rumour every day over and over again it is hard to look at it as what it really is: a rumour. I admit even I have been caught on occasion when a name is mentioned I would like to see in an Arsenal shirt. But I try to keep relaxed about it and think of it as paper and website filling to sell paper and to get clicks.

Let me take David Villa as an example. I would love to see him in an Arsenal shirt. His goal scoring record is great so I would be thrilled if he would come to Arsenal. But if I had to believe the rumours from last week he would do a medical last Sunday at Arsenal. As I knew that Barcelona was playing a game last Sunday I knew this was a rumour that could be checked rather easily. And as I expected David Villa was in Barcelona that day sitting on the bench (now we really could say “beach” over there) and coming on as a substitute after 66 minutes.

Unless it was a lookalike of course. And the real David Villa was seen on Heathrow but only wearing his t-shirt as he didn’t know winters in London are a bit colder than in Barcelona?

But some people believe all these things. And then they get angry because Arsenal doesn’t make the signing public. When nothing is signed they can’t make it public of course. But some people just don’t look at it like that. It was mentioned in the paper that we will sign player X so we should sign him. No matter what.  Wenger and Gazidis cock it up again by losing the player at the last second.

The rumours create expectation and when they don’t get materialised those people get angry and start shouting and abusing the club and the people that are responsible for the transfers. And yet there is no evidence at all that the club ever was interested in those players or wanted them at all.

I usually try to stay as far away from the internet and transfer rumour madness as I can. If it wouldn’t have been for this article I wouldn’t have visited those sites (and I only did a few so it could be that we have been linked with even more names) because I don’t want to help them in their search for clicks.

I think we all know that Arsenal does their business as far away from the publicity as can be. It is only when a player by accident says something that you can imagine that there might be something going on. But all those “it is reported that” or “a source said that” are things that we can best ignore.

Ignore because there is a 98% chance that it is rubbish. Ignore because it will raise false hope. And ignore because it will bring you down if your favourite transfer target doesn’t come.

The only thing that you can rely on is the Arsenal website. And maybe reading it you can see a few things. First thing is that Wenger is talking about 1 or 2 signings in public. That is already something. You can be sure that they are working on some deals.

And also Wenger saying that he expects that there will be most of all an internal English market. So can we scrap the foreign names? Is he looking at players at an English club?

Or is Wenger putting us on the wrong foot? Time will tell. Just keep calm, after all we are the Arsenal.


94 Replies to “Arsenal signing 80 players this transfer window?”

  1. Walter, yes you missed M’Vila, I heard this one either yesterday or the day before.

  2. At least some relief that the rumours about Schwarzer, Barton, or (God forbid!) Shawcross don’t seem to have resurfaced this time.

  3. After writing it down the Lucas Biglia rumour started 😉

    And John don’t hold year breath…

  4. If Theo signs a new deal, wait for all those who said Arsenal would be mad to let him leave and must break the bank to keep him, to start complaining that he isn’t worth whatever large sum is being paid.

  5. Vargas! A transfer rumour made up by someone on twitter just to see how far this story would go. To his astonishment four (4!) British papers, 1 Italian paper and numurous blogs ran with it. Even after he had admitted on twitter that he had it all made up, some blogs were still reporting it.

    Must be brilliant to have a job as football journalist; no research, no checking of sources, no apologies when you get it all wrong, just lazily surfing twitter and copy/past anything that takes your fancy. As long as it sells papers or clicks.

  6. The next one is: Adam Szalai (Mainz)
    I know him. (Adam is also hungarian like me).
    He is very talented, but a typical “Giroud style” player and not an Arsenal level.

  7. Oh, and please don’t forget Arsenal’s next ‘signing’:
    Juan Camilo Zuniga (Napoli) 🙂

  8. My fellow fans, What Wenger and Arsenal Board members are doing in this our beloved Arsenal club is fooling theirselves and not the fans, instead of making the club proud, they are killing the club for their selfish ambition.

  9. Walter, I’m not at all surprised at the host of players being associated with Arsenal at the beginning of each Window
    (and also at its end, in preparation for the next Window).
    I can just imagine the following conversation in the newsroom of a typical English newspaper:
    Editor to Sports Reporter: I see you don’t mention Arsenal in today’s issue.
    Sports Reporter: No news Guv.
    Editor: Well make up something nasty for tomorrow. You know our policy and it pleases Fergie.
    Reporter: How about Arsenal sacking Wenger and bringing in Allardyce to replace him?
    Editor: Sounds good to me and it’ll sell a few thousand more copies. You know news about Arsenal can always be relied on by the media.

  10. Samuel,
    and what exactly is that “selfish ambition” from Wenger and the board?

  11. When was there a rumour about Casillas coming to Arsenal ? It doesnt pass even as a joke .
    I dont think there were really 150 players linked with us over the summer . There were perhaps 20 who were somewhat seriously linked with us , 3 were bought , and thats a reasonable proportion , mind you that every player is being linked with several clubs so naturally most will not sign for the one club in question . Newspapers , in any case , need to fill space and so they do . The truth is , as Arsene Wenger knows well , there arent that many great players available out there at any given window . A great player who could really contribute is either playing for a team and stays there or has a wild price tag and wages . As opposed to what many fans seem to think these days , its not like walking into ZARA and buying a shirt . If Arsene does manage to put his hands on a decent player who fits the budget it will be an achievement

  12. All that being said we will remain Arsenal and Arsenal will remain to prosper! these roumers sometimes make me sick but I will remain faithful to the club I Love to support. Long live Arsenal

  13. Walter,
    In the interesting ommission department:
    Demba Ba (ALAS!) was linked a lot.
    So please add to the record.
    This linkage wasn’t funny, I guess.

  14. And the next is on the way in:

    26. Stekelenburg according to the Corriere dello Sport

    Man, we will have 6 or 7 keepers if this continues like this

  15. Arsenal should work on that guy Gibbs,(starmina advantage) he has a great potential of becoming striker. He only need to learn on the training ground how to kick a fast moving ball to hit the target, also his body movement tilting towards his target, whitin a very tight corner /angle. Afterall he is taller than Messi……Arsen give him a role upfront from the flancks for 5marches then see what that guy can do….

  16. I have seen Schalke defender Benedikt Howedes mentioned as a target a few times, including today. Apparently Wenger is known to be in the market for a defender to shore up our shaky defence and the German international will fit the bill.

  17. Oh, and don’t forget Frank Lampard, he has warranted a few mentions from those ‘in the know’ now he is no longer needed at Chelsea.

  18. @ Walter
    Did you have Holtby in your list?
    I wonder how many players get linked to other clubs. We could have a competition.

    As for M’Vila, I had to laugh when I saw a headline: “Arsenal end interest in M’Vila”. What interest? Rennes are clearly desperate to unload him and, I suspect, using the Arsenal name to attract suitors. I reckon this latest headline is just that particular paper realising that they have got to the end of the road with it and trying to save face.

  19. And Giroud was bought in preference to Demba Ba, so it’s not surprising AW didn’t go for Ba.

  20. I remember when Seaman retired and everyone knew we were buying a keeper as replacement we were linked with loads of keepers. In the end we got Lehmann, but a newspaper (observer I think) counted the number of keepers we had been linked to and got something like 70 odd (can’t remember exactly as was few years ago)!
    Of course some of these might have been under consideration, scouted, and then decided against, but it seems that newspaper work like this – Arsenal need player in position X, link lots of different players who play in position X to Arsenal and if/when it comes off claim “as we exclusively told you”!

  21. In truth, Wenger is the 1st person deceiving all the fans, After Carzola signing he said he was looking to bring 1 or 2 excepetional signings and we all stayed on the internet 24 hrs on d last day of d summer transfer, but no one came in…. Now, he is at it again, He should speak the truth to the fans so he dosent abused or disgrace by the fans… After all we are The Arsenal

  22. Apparently Holtby ‘snubbed’ (to use that well worn media word)us because “Tottenham are not a small club and have an insanely good manager.” I suppose the insinuation is that we are a small club with a crap manager. You couldn’t make it up could you!

  23. Apparently Holtby ‘snubbed’ (to use that well worn media word)us because “Tottenham are not a small club and have an insanely good manager.” I suppose the insinuation is that we are a small club with a crap manager. You couldn’t make it up could you!

  24. Ha ha yes Mick because we would be ‘competing’ in the transfer market with Man City wouldn’t we!?!?!?!?

  25. @mick; if you read his interview in Bild, Holtby doesn’t even mention Arsenal.
    Another one in this vein is Belhanda; rejected Arsenal reads the headline. In the body of the text Arsenal is not mentioned, only Spurs’s so called battle with Fenerbahce to sign him.
    Yes, they do make it up. The gutters smell blood and want to maximise unrest under the Arsenal fans.

  26. Bart,
    Maybe this is a positive thing for Arsenal. What they are saying is if the title said Tottenham, people wouldn’t bother to read it so they use Arsenal instead as it’s the most popular team. Maybe??

  27. Back in 2004 (ish) Sky used to run a transfer page on their website where you could list team by team all the transfer rumours (reported through them). The stories were colour coded according to likelihood, three ratings were used. Not likely, 50/50 and dead cert.

  28. @stuart, that’s a nice way of saying click whoreing? I see it as stirring, Wenger failing again to sign someone when in reality he has never made an offer, as far as we know anyway. Apparently Arsenal fans have the highest presence on the Internet/social media so that might have something to do with it as well, if true

  29. The way some of the press used Holtby against Wenger was a complete joke!he admitted he had looked at the player, that was it!
    Heard this morning we are about to sign someone called Theo Walcott??

  30. There’s a player Tresor Mputu, a DR Congo player whom we sign every window. A Hearts of Oak player, failed to make any impression in Africa, but Arsenal is always on the verge of signing him! Very funny i must say.
    As for me I’m not bothered by all these rumours, in fact, sometimes I pretend that we have signed some of them. So I ‘become’ Arsene for a moment, and start tinkering with my first eleven. But that’s all, no more.
    The only thing that now worries me is the fixture pile-up. We will need reinforcements ASAP, you never know what those cloggers from Man City will do to our players on Sunday.

  31. @Mandy Dodd
    If as seems likely, Theo does now sign it will be a kick in the teeth for most of the media experts who have been telling us for months that he is as good as gone. Oh well, they can’t be right all the time!

  32. Good piece, Walter.

    I actually enjoy reading the rumors and rating the likelihood of their being correct. I get the impression too that we Arsenal talks to lots of agents and inquires about lots of players…some of whom they have absolutely no interest – just to confuse other teams watching their moves in the market.

    What I hate is players who sign for other clubs granting interviews that they turned Arsenal down for x or y reason when they cannot really prove that Arsenal had more than a passing interest in signing them. Arsenal doesn’t do that to players or does it to a few, due to inquiries from the press pay and it always come out as sincere respect and compliments to their talents.

    But the players do it to score cheap points against Arsenal as well as many blogs and pundits to imply that they didn’t think Arsenal was good enough these days, for the signature talented players.

  33. Scouts actually provide reports on dozens of players on a regular basis, that’s a major component of their job.

    This dates as far back as the 1930s where Herbert Chapman writes this is what his scouts did and this then keeps the rumour mill going.

    Wenger wanting a simple report on whether a player like Nani could fit into the Arsenal system is interpreted as a serious transfer.

  34. players linked with Arsenal since Aug 31st 2012 all 52 of them

    Klaas Jan Huntelaar
    Wilfried Zaha
    Thierry Henry
    Adel Taarabt
    Fernando Llorente
    Adrian Lopez Alvarez
    Jose Reina
    David Villa
    Hatem Ben Arfa
    Raheem Sterling
    Radamel Falcao
    Riechedly Bazoer
    Edison Cavani
    Jetro Willems
    Stewart Downing
    Kevin Strootman
    Mohamed Diami
    Yann MVila
    Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa
    Liam Moore
    Didier Drogba
    Brede Hangeland
    Igor Denisov
    Aleksandar Dragovic
    Gianelli Imbula
    Leandro Damiao
    Max Clayton
    Andre Schurrle
    Lewis Holtby
    Son Heung-Min
    Ante Roguljic
    Yoan Gouffran
    Charlie Austin
    Edin Dzeko
    Will Hughes
    Andreas Cornelius
    Frank Lampard
    Marco Verratti
    Remy Cabella
    Luiz Gustavo
    Afriyie Acquah
    Stephan El Shaarawy
    Simon Mignolet
    Luke Shaw
    Luke Young
    Benedikt Howedes
    James McArthur
    Jack Butland
    James McCarthy
    Lucas Biglia

  35. Yohan Cabaye, Jonas Olsson, Wesley Sneijder, Arda Turan, Jack Butland, Stevan Jovetic, Kevin Strootman, Klaas-Jan Huntelaar (alas, he signed a contract extension days after the link was forged), Anthony Knockaert (?? the rumour originated in France), Vicente Guaita (Valencia keeper, Spanish rumour). That’s 10 names I can come up with, and maybe 1 of them makes any sense at all… And how do you feel about “Arsenal’s long-term target Aubameyang” being linked to Newcastle?

    I really don’t get it – I know the media are all about fabricating evidence and making things up in any which way they can, but why should they do it so transparently? Falling for fake twitter accounts, fanpage wishlists and whatnot, they are proving to be dupes themselves. Perhaps it does affect their sales, but it eventually proves a world without journalists is possible. After all, what do we need them for? If they have no insight, no particular knowledge of the matters they discuss?… if they have no special sources, and only use the channels available to any pressman?… if they even fail to assess the stories they copy/paste? I don’t care about the ethics of journalism (the courts rule on that), but it proves to be a thoroughly mind-numbing job that mostly affects the lives of the under-educated. With the fast-growing number of graduates in the West, I can’t see the press gaining any more ground by getting stupider.

  36. @FunGunner
    Couldn’t agree more with you regarding the M’Vila link, and that its all designed to attract suitors by associating him with Arsenal. Last time it was reported it was his agent trying to force an offer from an Italian club that he came up with this story that a deal with us was imminent.

    Surprised they are/were still trying to use this tactic. My policy, as Walter suggested, is never to believe anything in the media, until ts published on the Arsenal website.

  37. FCArsenal,
    the thing is, I seriously doubt these names come from scouting reports. I’m quite sure a half of them are thoroughly made up. And then, even if Wenger asks for an extensive report: how often do you think he does that? once a day? It would seem so… And then, what’s the security at the Emirates doing if the press can gain such easy access to these materials? Or maybe they’re leaked out of Wenger’s home?
    It’s pointless to argue that even a major part of these rumours have more foundation than someone’s rich imagination. The Vargas story illustrates how it works. “Arsenal are looking for 1 or 2 players? Well, they could definitely use a CF/winger/DM/CB/keeper! You know of any crappy keeper that would cost them a lot?” Oftentimes, these rumours don’t even make sense in terms of what the team needs. If we need to replace Diaby, how come there’s only so few rumours about incoming DM’s? If we won’t take more than two players this window, how come there’s so many keepers on that list? If we are known to spend as little as possible, how come so many of these links lead to very costly players? And so on…

  38. You are now moving on to the ‘sensationalism’ of the media with the rise of the ‘blogger’ and the popularity of forums the sports media are increasingly having to over sensationalise every little story so that it jumps into the face of the reader/listener. The facts matter very little as long as the headline is big and controversial or just plain silly whatever is best to gain readers/listeners. Talk sport are experts at this and The Sunday supplement/SSN are getting there with radio 5 coming a close 3rd.

    The problem comes when you listen/read the story enough in the end you begin to believe it no matter if the facts are not 100% correct. You only have to look at the 52 names above and then think how many of those would come to Arsenal? Arsenal are a fairly closed club only allowing bits of info out at a time and I think the media make up these stories to try and get other info out of the club.

  39. Just found out we’re ‘battling it out’ with Chelsea and spuds for Alvaro Negredo’s signature after the player himself admitted he likes the prem…..

  40. So on our list nr. 31 is Alvaro Negredo

    And are they battling it out on Holloway road or in the Wembley Arena? 🙂

  41. there is many players out there looking for good club like arsenal. but Arsene wenger can not bring out money to buy players.Arsene wenger should look for players like

    M Vorm, Swansea City

    L Piszczek Borussia Dortmund

    L Baines, Everton

    M.Hummels Borussia Dortmund

    M Mbiwa Montpellier

    M Vila Rennes

    M.Fellaini Everton

    L.Biglia Anderlecht

    M.Götze Borussia Dortmund

    Cazorla Arsenal

    J.Rodríguez Porto

    J.Hernández Manchester United

    T.Walcott Arsenal

  42. Great article Walter.

    We all need to keep our feet on the ground and not be seduced by the media.

  43. A little bird told me that mo farah has been seen at the training ground….could there be anything in that? That guy has some engine, and is a true Gooner…..

  44. @ Mandy Dodd January 9, 2013 at 8:07 pm
    ha ha

    @ Al
    If you don’t take it seriously, it is quite entertaining, isn’t it? Especially when they try and act like they know something about a player who has been invented by a Twitter wag. Wag as in humourist, obviously.

  45. @ Van Cruz
    I feel that Götze won’t sign for any other club. He has been at Dortmund since he wass 9.

  46. The main problem is all media newspapers are involved in publishing this crap. So, even if one doesn’t want to publish it, they still do it as they can’t risk losing hits & thus advertising money to their rivals.
    To be honest, you must be an idiot to believe in such nonsense.

  47. We’ve also been linked to Lars Bender who looks quite good, however no matter how good he could be there is **** all chance of me buying his shirt if he ever did come.

  48. @ Stuart – the afro is amazing and he’s great at headers. Not sure what else you’d want in a footballer?

  49. Where are those posters who claimed that Arsenal are rubbish just because we drew at Swansea???

  50. Nice article Walter.

    The squad is still in rebuilding mode so I expect important signings, but perhaps not in January. I would settle for Diaby and Rosicky playing on a fairly regular basis at this stage.

  51. van cruz….what tree do you live in? Did your mother drop you from it on your head while breast-feeding you last week? How old are you anyway?

    Reread the article and maybe you’ll get the gist of this blog…that is if you can read past the title!

  52. Huntelaar, Jelavic, Zvradko Kuzmanovic, Dusan Basta, Afriyie Acquah, Denis Praet, Sean Morrison, Cavani, Kevin Strootman, Kieran Trippier, Max Clayton, Mateo Kovačić, Aymen Abdennour.

    I could go on but I think you get the idea.

  53. woohoo! its the rumor mill running. so much fun in there. most of which have no legit sources cited.

  54. Permin Schwegler, benedikt howedes?
    Good to see we are no longer linked with st Scotty Parker at least.

  55. Walter, I think we are going about this wrongly . What we need is a 7 foot,4 lungs( lunged ?) forward who not only is good the air (duh!),
    nimble on his ambidextrous feet to unlock the most stubborn of defences ,able to defend from deep in central defence ,able to set up chances for the others after breaking up the opposition’s attack in center midfield as well as being in the 10 – 15 million Pounds region .
    He would be the first goal to goal ‘central zonal player ‘ (CZP – you heard it first !) in the world !Wow ! 3 in 1 !
    He would save us money , please the fans ,manager , bankers, shareholders as well as stump the AAA (Yes!), the press , bloggers ,black scarve wearers and of course ,Steward Robson!
    He exsists (well at least in my mind!),and waits to be discovered .So go forth and find him .We need him like yesterday !
    Try those secluded, secret medical laboratories of N. Korea , Transylavania or even Malaysia ! Or in Deepest Africa .

  56. Arsenal is too slow when it comes to making up his mind on a player. And i doubt if he really knows which player to buy and in the end, he ends up pick up players who dont fit Arsenal standards.

  57. And I’d love to see Spider Man replacing our poor boy with the weird name of Wojciech 😀

  58. What of signing this player that led Montepillier to the Ligue1 title last season by the name Olivier Giroud and one Lucas Podolski, a proven German international with over a hundred caps for the national team. Also, learnt that a Santi Carzola is available for cheap at Malaga. Wenger should move fast in order to secure their signatures. Don’t forget that you read about this first from me.
    Oh! I didn’t realize that they are already Arsenal players. Lol

  59. Is this list still being updated? I’m sure we can make more than 80, they’re coming thick and fast now: Aleksandar Dragovic, Austrian international playing for Basel

  60. 34. Moussa Sissoko-sporting review.
    35. Aleksandar Dragovic, Austrian international playing for Basel

  61. Great piece, Walter!
    I am an Arsenal fan that still trusts in Arsene, but I am still so desperate for Arsenal to sign several extraordinary players in each transfer window that I look at the club website every day. As we all know, there is very rarely any new signings being reported there, especially in the early parts of the window (Poldi being a great exception). Then against better knowledge I go on to look at the media coverage and there find almost endless rumors.
    Thanks for this super antidote from falling for such click traps almost daily. We should disregard all such rumors that do not contain actual quotes with actual identifiable and reliable persons. How many of these alleged 30-50 targets have this? My guess is none.

  62. Great piece Walter

    I have accepted the fact: that we as Gooners will be subjected to the hype. I have also accepted the reality of our transfer policy.

    I ask myself regulary: Realistically, which player(s) would
    I like to see at the Emirates that can/could have an impact in the premiership?

    The list is small!!

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