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April 2021

Yaya Sanogo?

Yaya Sanogo.  He came, unknown (which makes him a typical Wengerian signing).

He played a tiny bit, looked rather lost as I recall, and then got injured.  (Which makes him a typical Wengerian signing).

And then he played in the FA Cup, taking on Liverpool’s first team.   And did rather well, I thought.  Actually rather better than Thierry Henry did the first time I saw him (and both Henry and Sanogo came up through the same CO Les Ulis club in Paris).

And here the thing: Bendtner didn’t even make the bench.  Which rather suggests the shape of things to come (to quote HG Wells).

It took Sangogo a little while of course – the first few moments had him looking lost, as he did when he played last summer.  But then it began to look as if he did indeed know what was what – as of course Wengerian signings do.

What he needed was confidence, and he got that when Özil crossed,  Sanogo chested it down and then took a shot. From then on, he was in the game.  Not a mega star, but a competent young centre forward just starting out and looking very happy to be there.

But is he just a kid with injury concerns, as he was painted when we signed him?  The injury concerns seem right given the amount of time he’s been out of the Arsenal team, but he was player of the tournament in the Under-20 World Cup last year, which Sanogo won with France and you don’t get that for nothing.

Yet throughout, injuries are the key to all this.  He was injured a lot last season, but scored 10 goals in 13 for Auxerre which is an astonishing rate.  The goals include close-in events one on one, and long range shots from further out.

But we know what brittle brilliant players are like.  Diaby (also once of Auxerre) is a prime example.  French Football Weekly highlighted the main concern when they said, “Has his technique survived these long periods of inactivity at such an important stage of his development?”

They also said that Sanogo drops too deep sometimes when he should be  menacing in the penalty-box.  They also think he tries too hard to link up with his midfielders – but if that is all that is wrong, that is an easy issue for the technique and tactics master that Wenger is to resolve.

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Sanogo is still a work in progress, but Wenger knows all about work in progress, and the word around is that Wenger sees Sanogo not just as a scorer, but as a man who can cause havoc simply by being there and running around in the box.

If that is right then Sanogo could be quite a different type of signing, and another facet of the ever changing Wengerian landscape.   Certainly for a first full game, I thought he did the business last night.


49 comments to Yaya Sanogo?

  • Andrew Crawshaw

    I was impressed with his potential from the U20 World Cup, looked gangly and slight but was normally in the right place when it mattered. I was more impressed yesterday, he has filled out significantly and looked stronger. A really good prospect. He worked hard, was a handful for the Liverpool defenders who had to resort to fouling him more often than not. One of the biggest cheers of the day was when the linesman finally flagged frantically for a foul on him and half the stadium rose in applause.
    Not a world beater yet but worth bringing on regularly for 30 mins or so when the game situation permits to further his development and get him used to playing competitively with his first team colleagues.
    As for yesterday – nice one Yaya you did well!

  • Lobster

    Most certainly did. Got a bit “jaded” towards the end, but he gave 70 mins of hell to a pair of some of the most experienced centerbacks in the league

  • jambug

    My thoughts entirely.

    Solid. Not spectacular.

    Certainly taken in the context of the quality of the opposition, the context of the game and the fact it was his FIRST game it was very satisfactory.

    I’m NOT a Bendtner basher but I would suggest he wouldn’t of been as influential as Sonago so all in all a positive start.

  • agger and skertel did not make a forward foray as long as sanogo was on the pitch – he kept them that occupied, that for a youngster against 2 experienced PL center halves is a very good start. If only that shot had gone in off gerards side/arm instead of alex’s rebound it would’ve done so much for the kids confidence.

  • The ovation he got when he was taken off at 87 mins, from the stadium full of fans was more telling of what they thought of his performance.

  • Gord

    I don’t think what Wenger wants or needs are clones: if Giroud gets hurt, stick in clone A. Rather, a person is looking for alternatives. We are playing team such and such, and with these midfielders available, I am going to use forward C. Yes, it is nice if the abilities of the forwards overlap to a certain extent. If a forward gets hurt and needs to be subbed off, if the forward going on can play in the style, the shape of the team doesn’t need to change. But the rest of the team still need to recognize the forward has changed, and it they see an opportunity for something this new player does better than the player who was on did, they should call for the change.

  • max


    Fist full competitive [2 sub app] game at this level.

    Bullied both those mafia CBs.

    Good 1st touch,awareness.

    Finally AW may be on a winner after all those duds..Cabrello.Jeffers,Devicculis,Diawara,Bor-montre,Bentdhner etc

  • Alex

    For his First day appearance after long spell on injury fantastic I will say.What else can do.However it is a long way to go for me before any kind of judgment.

    Well done Yaya Sanogo. Hope you will be another fantastic African player with loads of great attitude. Please learn from the likes of Henry and not that silly Adebayor.

  • WalterBroeckx

    What I liked a lot was the way he handled the Özil cross that lead to our first goal. Most strikers would have attempted to head it but taking it on your chest like he did showed that he has a bit of skill in him and that he can use it. If there would have been no defender to block the ball it was going in and I don’t think a keeper could have stopped that ball.
    As I also wrote in my article he started roughing the central defenders also a bit. I think he got more fouls called against him than he got in his favour…

  • bjtgooner

    It is unfortunate that he has missed a lot of playing time this season, as while he has developed well he could have progressed further given adequate match time. However, he looks like a very fine prospect with a great career ahead.

  • AL

    Even though I was happy for Alex’s goal, I also felt it’d have been more sweeter if gerard hadn’t blocked that volley(with his arm too). You could see it was destined for the back of the net the minute he let fly. That would have done his confidence a massive world of good.

    But overall I thought Sanogo was great, he kept the two Liverpool centre backs occupied the whole game, and they had to resort to unorthodox means to get the ball away from him. Also the way he chased down, and won, what appeared like lost causes was just impressive. He will come good. As stated already, we hardly missed anyone with him in the starting line-up yesterday.

  • GooneressNo1

    I thought Yaya Sanogo was excellent dealing with the harrying, bullying tactics of Agger and co and considering it was his debut, considering the intensity of the game, knowing that he would be marked out as a potential weak link from the start, the fact that it looked as if Agger and co believed the ref would turn a blind eye to their increasingly brutal assaults, he was very very impressive indeed.

    Wenger knows how to prepare a player and then some.

  • Pierce Holt

    As the WOLF said in PULP FICTION….
    “Well, let’s not start sucking each other’s dicks quite yet.”

    He has a history of injuries……We all hope that he is not a Amaury Bischoff.

    ps…is Park c Young still around or was he loaned out in Jan?

  • jambug

    I would also suggest that the way the others where never afraid to play it into him that they never doubted his ability to win his battles.

    And they where right as he never ducked the challenge at any time.

  • Brickfields Gunners

    For a youngster , he showed maturity and gave back as good as he got . Was not fazed at all .
    Am looking forward to seeing him in the upcoming games .

  • Gord

    Park is on loan. Watford?

  • Gord

    Frimpong seemed to have a good game on Saturday, Bartley got hurt yesterday (ex-Gunners).

  • 9jagunnerdoc

    You know, Walter? Pedro at LeGrove, after he saw the starting line up, tweeted that AW was starting an injury prone wannabe postman, and that he could never perform.

    After the match, I asked him if he had changed his opinion, of course, he never replied me. Only for him to tweet minutes later, that he did not understand what the noise about Sanogo was all about, and that he and the people around him thought he was average.

    Of course, I instantly tweeted him back that he never gave him a chance to be even average, and that he should have eaten the humble pie instead of trying to be bullish.

  • blacksheep63

    @9jagunnerdoc Le Grove probably left before the end so he could get back to whatever stone he lives under. I wouldn’t bother responding to him, he is a self-appointed medja whore who represents NO Arsenal fans anywhere. But well done for berating the tw*t

    as for Yaya I thought he did fine for a first full game. In a really competitive game he never looked out of place. When he finds out where the goal is I reckon he will do very well indeed

  • Shay- TX Gooner

    Does Yaya remind anyone of a young Adebayor? Long, lanky, but with above average foot skills for a big man… His chest down and volley attempt reminded me of the goal Adebayor scored against Villareal a few years back in the CL. If he can keep his head down and work hard, Wenger might have found another diamond in the rough.

  • Always a wonderful feeling to herald and celebrate a promising new arsenal player. Thought Sanogo showed how much he belongs and I look forward to seeing more of him. Those sad, teeth-gnashing ghouls whose chief joy in life is to spew vitriol – not worth considering.

  • OMGArsenal

    Did anyone, other than the troglodytes at LeGrove, notice that Sanogo seems to be a mashup between Song, Diaby, Bendtner and Henry or have I been smoking too much ganja? He is very physically strong, has good aerial ability, good technical skills,is very gangly and awkward looking initially,has a strong right foot, can be pacey when he wants to, has a sense of where to be in the box, doesn’t back down from a challenge and works well with his teammates.

  • Shakabula Gooner

    Not in this January window but in the 2013 summer window, Wenger, in response to the question of why he didn’t buy a striker. His answer was that he did: he bought Sanogo. He went on to say that people didn’t know him now but in the not too distant future, they would and come to appreciate his talent. I thought for a coach of his stature and talent spotting and development history, that was a major thing to say about a 20year old footballer he bought injured. Now that Sanogo has given Arsenal fans a glimpse of what he can do (less in this season but more in the coming ones) please indicate by show of hands if you would rather Wenger bought another striker in the January season.

    The two big problems Arsenal fans have are: a propensity to disdain what they have before trying it on and despite Wenger’s long history of bringing in young, talented players who go on to blossom in the club; as well as a preference for others’ negative views about their set up (team, system, coach, etc.,) before taking a careful look for themselves.

  • Am glad and happy that ” the type of wegerian signing is starting to look like the wengering signing out come “.
    Was impressed with is work rate nd hw he never even snuff it @ all the liverpool defend roughing just got stuck in wit both Men. Good outing for a young striker in is FIRST real start in an important match like that. Looking Forward to tell the world ” I TOLD YOU SO THAT YAYA SANOGO IS A CLASS ACT LEGEND IN MAKING “

  • Va Cong

    15 goals by end of the season !

  • Gord

    No pressure there, eh Va Cong?

    Oh, “eh” is a Canadianism.

  • Rantetta

    I keep looking at the squad photo, and I’m often drawn to Sanogo, among others.

    I think he put in a good shift. I loved seeing him chasing down balls passed back to scousygoalyman. He’s got some pace. I like that he shot at the goal a few times. I like that he defended the corners that were taken against us.

    I love to see the young players developing their game. I like the facial expressions – the “Gaw blimey, is that allowed ref”, or whatever the equivalent is in French. Sanogo whipped up the crowd with his youthful enthusiasm. It was as though he felt he belongs, which can’t be a bad thing??

    Was it anything to do with Arsenal fans ‘supporting’ – making noise – that he tried to lift them further with his gesture?

    In that squad photo, taken after Ozil’s arrival, Sanogo’s even taller than Giroud. (So what? Well, he’s got good feet for a big man. I hope you know I’m just repeating a cliche).

    Support all of Arsenal’s players. I demand that. Don’t bother coming on here when one day S22 has a bad game, or misses a sitter. You’ve got the interworld/le bolux to go to for that.

    Watch Sanogo grow.

  • Gord

    Rantetta, I have no doubt that Sanogo feels like he belongs. Wenger knew he was going to need a lot of rehab before he would get significant playing time.

  • Rantetta

    On another site one commentator described Liverpool’s defenders as “anger and scuntel”, which I found most appropriate – and highly amusing.

  • Rantetta

    You’re correct, of course.
    When Mr Wenger chooses a player to come to Arsenal, my spirits lift. Anticipation abounds. What have we got here.

    A virtual wankfest ensued having seen Zalalem playing for Arsenal in Asia. (Well maybe not that but I can’t think of the right phrase). When Ramsey started getting games… Fabregas playing next to Vierra… Rocky and Micheal Thomas…

    Yeah, it’s a wankfest.

    (What’s a wankfest anyway?)

  • Gord

    I think we have lots of cause for optimism. We seem to have 2 or 3 of the academy on the verge of coming in, and a good core of people in the first team.

    On the flip side, we have let some young players leave this year, who had been close to coming in. I hope they do well. It was disappointing to read that Bartley hurt his leg (hamstring?) yesterday.

    I’ll leave it to others on your question.

  • Ray from Norfolk, Virginia

    In two seasons, the most significant Yaya in the Prem will be Sanogo, not Toure.

  • Ray from Norfolk, Virginia

    The most significant yoyo, on the other hand, will still be Suarez:
    Diving Running Diving Running Diving Running Diving Running…

  • Gord impossible is nothing! 😉

  • Rantetta lets get this wank feast started! oh yeah! Arsenal going to have the biggest money shot in the world!!!!!!!

  • Gord


    Yoyos go up and down, is Running up and Diving down?

    @Va Cong
    I have been involved with Linux and Open Source a long time. The developers of Samba used to ask people to send them pizza, so there is a mechanism to do so. If Sanogo finishes the season (all competitions) with 15 goals, I owe you a pizza. I will be happy with 1 goal, and overjoyed if that 1 goal is a winning goal.

    I think he will be a good player. I just think it is getting a little late to get to 15. 🙂

  • bjtgooner

    I watched the match through a second time tonight and noticed an incident at about minute 38. Arsenal were attacking with Pod on the left wing getting into position to cross the ball & having been put through behind the full back.

    Sanogo was running towards the Liverpool box more or less centrally. Agger noted Sanogo’s progress & deliberately moved to block him off, after a collision Sanogo pushed Agger aside and continued forward. Result – Sanogo was a few yards short of Pod’s cross.

    So a deliberate foul off the ball by Agger – any comments Walter or others?

    The incident was not spotted, or ignored, by the officials.

  • Micheal Ram

    The future defense in EPL. God may help you all.

  • bjtgooner

    ……,or was ignored,……

  • Va Cong

    Gord I’d like a meat feast thanks braces to come from supa Sanogo san

  • Micheal Ram

    Somehow rather I think sanogo will be drogba type of player. What do u guys think?

  • ARSENAL 13

    So not a SAY NO GO…… Dint give him any chance. Idiots….

    What I was impressed with, he was confident enough to gesture the crowd to raise their voices. And the crowd responded.

    Skirtel and Agger thought they had him in his pocket. Wasnt the case. Agger got one on his face trying to block Sanogos run. And the first goal…..usually Skirtel grabs his opponents and bullies them out of contention. But Sanogo was too strong for him…..

  • Asif

    I am impressed too with this boy…my bet he will score a few before the season ends!

  • Shakabula Gooner

    Indeed, Sanogo may be pretty feisty to boot.
    The news made the rounds 1 or 2weeks earlier that he and BFG had an altercation on the training ground. The news was neither denied nor confirmed.

    Physically, he reminds me of Abu Diaby. I hope that the doesn’t replicate Abu’s ill luck with injuries…

  • para

    Sanogo say(s) no go(ARSENAL 13), you are not bullying me.

  • Damilare

    All correct assessments on Yaya Sanogo.

    I know our friends won’t be as excited or optimistic about him, that’s expected of them.
    I liked the way liverpool defenders, ‘anger and scuntel’ especially were bouncing off him and dropping like flies at times. I hate those times when we had ‘all feable’ players that were easily bullied off their stride.

    Congrats to Sanogo, Fabianski, the rest of the team, A. Wenger and Arsenal on the victory over liverpool in the FA cup.

    Bring on Bayern.


  • Brickfields Gunners

    Cartoon Law IV
    The time required for an object to fall twenty stories is greater than or equal to the time it takes for whoever knocked it off the ledge to spiral down twenty flights to attempt to capture it unbroken.
    Such an object is inevitably priceless, the attempt to capture it inevitably unsuccessful.

    From …

  • Brickfields Gunners

    Here’s a song that has been playing in my head –
    To the tune of Rasputin .

    Ya Ya Sanogo , Sanago ,
    arrow to Arsene’s bow ,
    Here’s a cat that’s really cool .

    Ya Ya Sanago , Sanago ,
    Soon to be Arsenal’s goal machine,
    What a shame he was injured early on .

    Ya Ya Sanago , Sanago ,
    They tried to poison his mind ,
    But another gem we do find .

    Ya Ya Sanago , Sanago ,
    Arsenal’s goal machine ,
    He came out fine .

    Ya Ya Ya Ya Ya Ya Ya Ya Ya Ya Ya
    Hey Hey Hey Hey Hey Hey Hey Hey Hey Hey

    Oo La La

    Rasputin lyrics.

    There lived a certain man in Russia long ago
    He was big and strong in his eyes a flaming glow
    Most people looked at him with terror and with fear
    But to Moscow chicks he was such a lovely dear
    He could preach the bible like a preacher, full of ecstasy and fire
    But he also was the kind of teacher women would desire

    Lover of the Russian queen
    There was a cat that really was gone
    Russia’s greatest love machine
    It was a shame how he carried on

    He ruled the Russian land, and never mind the Czar
    But the Cossachok he danced really wunderbar
    All affairs of state, he was the man to please
    But he was real great when he had a girl to squeeze
    For the queen he was no wheeling-dealer, though she heard the things he’d done
    She believed he was a holy healer who would heal her son

    Lover of the Russian queen
    There was a cat that really was gone
    Russia’s greatest love machine
    It was a shame how he carried on

    But when his drinking and lusting, and his hunger for power became known to more and more people, the demands to do something about this outrageous man became louder and louder…

    Hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey,
    Hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey.

    “This man’s just gotta go,” declared his enemies,
    But the ladies begged, “don’t you try to do it, please!”
    No doubt this Rasputin had lots of hidden charms
    Though he was a brute they just fell into his arms
    Then one night some men of higher standing
    Set a trap, they’re not to blame
    “Come to visit us,” they kept demanding, and he really came.

    Lover of the Russian queen
    They put some poison into his wine.

    Russia’s greatest love-machine
    He drank it all and said: “I feel fine.”

    Lover of the Russian queen
    They didn’t quit, they wanted his head

    Russia’s greatest love machine
    And so they shot him till he was dead.

    Oh, those Russians!

  • Valentin

    Sanogo and BFG had an argument, because Sanogo elbowed him causing a black eye. It was not an argument then a fight and a black eye. Let’s leave the brick fight at Cardiff, and the fisty cuff at Southampton.
    From what Wenger said, Sanogo apologised later, so I don’t think he is that feisty. He did not had that reputation in the France U20 team. More like a laid back kid who did not like the limelight.
    The France U20 were full of show boaters Thauvin, Pogba, Kondogbia, Aerola were names more discussed that he was, yet he was one of the most effective.