Tomorrow or the next day it will be known. 25 hours ago (that is around 7am UK time on Monday) I made my wholesome and exciting prediction that a certain Russian was on his way to us. At that moment virtually no one else was running the story, so I felt rather good (or rather stupid).
In fact I also felt rather neat because I gave my reasons as to why it looked like Arshavin was on his way, and those reasons seemed fairly logical (at least for 7am).
Sadly if you take your selection of news from Goonernews you might have missed my stunningly eloquent outpouring since they didn’t run it, but Arsenal News did (links to both on the right column of the site if you go to www.blog.emiratesstadium.info)
Anyway, the news this morning is
a) He’s on his way (BBC Radio 5)
b) He’s just scuppered the deal because his contract says that if the club don’t get a certain fee for him, he has to pay the difference. Mr A has now asked for the difference to be made up in salary. (Guardian – but I may have got a bit of that wrong – it seems such a tortuous load of meandering whatnot.)
But do we need him? Picking on another of my rambling themes of yesterday the Lord Wenger (clearly a regular reader of these pages) said something along the lines that we didn’t need Arshavin because Rosicky is on the way back. Well he might have said that – or not, the reporting isn’t 100% on the issue. Anyway Rosicky is running about a bit, which is good.
My point is, that with everyone fit I still think we have one hell of a team. I think Denilson is a great defensive midfielder who can do the job that Gilberto did for us, and do it just as well. As for the rest of the midfield, Ramsey will become a great player, Jack obviously is going to be a sensation and a half, and Nasri looks better and better as time goes by. (Remembering Pires’ first season, and how far above that Nasri is already, I have very high hopes).
Diaby shines amazingly in patches – and clearly the ability is all there, it is just the consistency we need (I thought the game changed for us when he came on, on Sunday) and although Song has not come as far as I would have hoped this year, he is developing at a pace, and by next season could be a very important member of the team. And then there’s Eboue, whose position is clearly not understood by many fans. On Sunday night I heard one person say on Radio 5 “even Wenger doesn’t believe in Eboue – otherwise he wouldn’t substitute him each week”. Actually Pires rarely played beyond 65 minutes either, and Wenger believed totally in Pires).
All of which means that the midfield is already getting crowded, and there is still Theo, Rosicky and Cesc to fit in somewhere. Given a decent round of fitness then next season we are going to see major rotation – and I still haven’t added Fran Merida.
Much the same looks to be happening with the forwards. There’s the regular three we use at present, plus Carlos Vela, who to me seems to have changed games at the Ems of late. And a certain number 9. And lurking behind that lot is Simpson. And Theo can play in the middle a bit too.
(Actually what’s the odds in five years for Theo as the centre forward and Jack as the number 10?)
I could go on, but out of humanity towards anyone who might still be reading, I will curtail my comments to the issue of left back. At Cardiff it looked as if we had our regular left back playing the game – assured, confident, and he is presumably still behind Traore as the reserve.
This is why I remain optimistic. Whether I have called Arshavin right or wrong doesn’t matter of course (just me having a laugh) but in the end, I wonder whether his joining us will matter or not anyway.
God it looks cold out there this morning.
(c) Tony Attwood Master of the BlogWaves 2009.
PS: Fortunes told, just cross me hand with silver. Roll up roll up.
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