The good news in Arsenal football’s world on a morning when I must admit news from elsewhere makes it hard to focus and write, (and this isn’t news at all, only that I have just woken up to the fact) is that we don’t seem to be losing anyone to go to the Orange Africa Cup of Nations Equatorial Guinea 2015 from 17 January to 8 February 2015. In the past the competition has given us some grief with its call ups, but not, it seems, this year.
The slightly interesting news is that according to CIES Football Observatory research into what they deem to be the current market values of the world’s leading players we have this top ten…
- 1. Lionel Messi £172.6m,
- 2. Cristiano Ronaldo £104.3m,
- 3. Eden Hazard £77.6m,
- 4. Diego Costa £65.9m,
- 5. Paul Pogba £56.4m,
- 6. Sergio Aguero £51m,
- 7. Raheem Sterling £49.4m,
- 8. Cesc Fabregas £48.6m,
- 9. Alexis Sanchez £47.8m,
- 10. Gareth Bale £47m
So Fabregas has gone up, Sanchez has gone up, and Bale has had his value cut in half. I wonder how they do it.
There is one bit of real transfer news. Kristoffer Olsson has been transferred to FC Midtjylland, where he has been on loan since September.
That’s about it. Elsewhere…
The Legia Warsaw story about Krystian Bielik won’t go away. The Daily Express made up this quote, “I hope that the two clubs come together and I go to London to fulfil my dreams. He [Mr Wenger] knows I have the skills, that I’m determined to win and he wants to sign me as soon as possible to start working with me.”
Allegedly interviewed on Polish website, he said, “I believe in him, because I know that he is not afraid to play the youngsters. Remember in the last game against Galatasaray in the Champions League, in which he put three 17-year-olds onto the pitch in the second half.”
The latest on Sky Sports is that Legia have rejected a second bid from Arsenal. They want £2.3m having paid Lech Poznan £9,500 last July. Bloody inflation.
The Metro, seeing this, made up another quote. “I’ve made a decision [to join Arsenal] and I’m not going to change it. I am looking forward to an agreement between the heads of the clubs. I realise that the negotiations may take some time. I am, however, confident it will happen soon.”
Borussia Dortmund have tossed away Manchester United’s bid for Mats Hummels, who the Star said Arsenal are interested in. The Daily Mail says that the player doesn’t want to go to Arsenal.
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Borussia Dortmund however said that no one has made an offer for Marco Reus despite the fact that the Star says that Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester United. Presumably the Star and its readership think the fault is with the clubs for not getting their act together, rather than that of the journalist who made it up.
The Star has also, despite the lunacy of its approach, continued with the concept that clubs can be on deep sleep, sleep, transient wakefulness, alert and high alert. Arsenal, Manchester United Stoke and Liverpool are on high alert over Xherdan Shaqiri now that a bidding process is on the way for the player.
And still the childish “newspaper” won’t give up. They say, “Paris Saint-Germain star Yohan Cabaye has made it clear that he wishes to remain at Parc des Princes. And thus, Arsenal can now sign Moussa Sissoko from Newcastle United as he will not move to PSG until Cabaye moves. What a tangled whatnot.
In fact, the more I look at this, the more it seems that every single transfer story has its origins in the offices of or public houses near The Daily Star where transfers are always “a race”.
Valencia have “joined the race” (told you so) to sign Dinamo Zagreb midfielder Marcelo Brozovic, alongside Arsenal, Everton, Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur. And Torquay United.
OK I made that last bit up.
And the Star don’t just do the comings, they also do the goings. Aston Villa, Sunderland, Crystal Palace and “French side Bordeaux” (in case you thought Bordeaux was a suburb of Blackpool) are “desperate” to land the Frenchman (that’s Sanogo to you) on loan.
Joel Campbell is off to Villarreal or Real Sociedad or (in a parallel universe) both. Not least because the Daily Star report that Campbell “is set to” (another key phrase) sign a contract extension.
Arsenal are interested in signing Atletico Madrid’s (the Star calls him “an ace”) Mario Mandzukic, as an alternative to Edinson Cavani, who was presumably out to lunch when they called.
Petr Cech is wanted by Arsenal, according to the Daily Star as is Hugo Lloris (according to the Metro, which is the pretty much the same).
Palermo star Paulo Dybala wants to move to Arsenal, and will not go to Manchester United or Liverpool because they are far too silly, said the Daily Express which isn’t silly at all.
That’s about it for gibberish. Something more substantial anon…