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October 2020

Arsenal confirm Nigerian duo signing as Debuchy heads for the exit

By Sir Hardly Anyone

I’ve taken that headline not, as you might believe, from a little blogetta that makes things up, but from the Independent, a supposedly reputable newspaper in the UK.   Now maybe they are right, but if so it is a bit interesting that there is no mention on or in other papers that there is a deal done.  Or that this is a DONE DEAL.

The latest generally is “Arsene Wenger is confident of pushing through deals for Nigeria teenagers Kelechi Nwakali and Samuel Chukwueze before the transfer window closes on Monday.”   So we seem to have put behind us the two day shock horror tale of being reported to Fifa for child trafficking and now its going to happen.  Or has happened.

The bloggettas however do agree, as they run  the headline, Striker Confirms He’s On His Way To Arsenal, Shirt Number Decided Too.    Kelechi Nwakali wants Nwankwo Kanu’s famous No.25 jersey.

The Daily Mirror goes on with direct quotes from the boss…

““Yes of course there are work permit issues. There are medical issues, because they have to make medicals. It’s progressing well.”

And the player himself has confirmed the transfer: “I am going to Arsenal to work and try to be the best I can,” he told the Nigerian Tribune.

But what is particularly interesting is that some of the heavyweight papers have actually, unbelievably, started to recognise that transfers don’t always result in success.

If you have been reading Untold for a while you’ll know that we’ve been stressing that the amount a PL club spend on players has very little to do with their subsequent success, (if it did Man U and Chelsea would be way out in front with Man C), with only 25% of transfers having much of an impact in their first year – while many have no impact at all.

So in a total reversal of attitude the Telegraph has printed a list of transfer window flops.  They actually do a top 20 but I’ll keep it short and just give you the top ten…

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  • 10. Fabio Borini (Liverpool to Sunderland, £8m)
  • 9. Aleksandar Mitrovic (Anderlecht to Newcastle)
  • 8. Gokhan Inler (Napoli to Leicester)
  • 7. Bastian Schweinsteiger (Bayern to Manchester United, £6m)
  • 6. Adama Traore (Barcelona to Aston Villa, £7m)
  • 5. Baba Rahman (Augsburg to Chelsea, £21m)
  • 4. Christian Benteke (Aston Villa to Liverpool, £32.5m)
  • 3. Florian Thauvin (Marseille to Newcastle, £12m)
  • 2. Memphis Depay (PSV to Manchester United, £19m)
  • 1. Radamel Falcao (Monaco to Chelsea, loan)

Back at Arsenal we hear that “Gibbs considering his Arsenal future”, given that he is “One of Arsenal’s few remaining homegrown English talents left at the club” which is a bit of a narrow definition of “home grown” talent, and not one that the League recognises for its “25” definition.  Still it is only in the Star.

The funny thing is that the story focuses on whether Gibbs will lose out on an England place because he isn’t playing enough.  So where will he go?  Those centres of pickings for the England XI, Crystal Palace, Newcastle and Swansea.

I think the story possibly comes because there is talk of Arsenal singing Chilwell from Leicester who is seen as an eventual successor to Nacho Monreal.

Meanwhile Corriere dello Sport, says (according also to the Telegraph, whose Italian is better than mine) are reporting that Inter Milan are desperate to cash-in on their Croatian midfielder, Marcelo Brozovic.

Now this isn’t actually a transfer.  It is a “Arsene Wenger could be tempted to part with £15 million required to secure the signing of the 23-year-old as he looks to bolster his injury-hit squad for the start of the title run-in.”

Injury hit?   Oh that would be Santi and Jack then, I guess.

Serge Gnabry has left West Brom but may go out on loan again.   Mr W is quoted as saying, “I am tempted to let him go somewhere, to do with him what I did with Francis Coquelin, to go somewhere for a month or two and then come back.”   And interesting turn of phrase.   That suggests the boss things Gnabry is just on ready for Arsenal.

Generally speaking however it looks like being a quiet day on the transfer front for Arsenal.  Mr Wenger made the highly relevant point that “We have 23 players in training – and plus two [the injured two] is 25 – so unless people go out we are not on the verge of bringing anybody in.”  Which actually makes the point that Danny Welbeck is back in training.

But even despite the lack of numerical space there is still the story that Real Madrid midfielder Isco is  available for £25m if Arsenal want him – although the talk is of a summer deal according to Spanish newspaper El Confidencial.   (Ah, another day, another Spanish newspaper I’d never previously heard of.)

But of course there is more.  “Arsenal are also believed to be leading the race to sign Celta Vigo striker Nolito after Barcelona pulled the plug on their pursuit of the 29-year-old, according to reports in Spain.  “Nolito has been linked with a move to the Gunners, but they saw Barcelona steam in with an attempt to bring the Spain international back to the Nou Camp to provide cover for Lionel Messi, Neymar and Luis Suarez.

It is also said that Arsenal have made a £23m bid for Dynamo Kiev wing Andriy Yarmolenko, but then, if you read the papers seriously, so have Liverpool, Everton and Tottenham.   But still, Ukrainian newspaper Sport (a fairly obvious title, but watch out it could be made up) claim that a deal has been done.  He’s apparently a player like Alexis Sanchez, Theo Walcott and Joel Campbell.

And Debucy is on his way to Sunderland.  Or Aston Villa.

Oh yes and “The Gunners are in the mix to sign Monaco youngster Kylian Mbappe, who is being billed as the ‘next Anthony Martial’.” According to L’Equipe.

It’s nearly all over, and there have been at least 273 players linked with Arsenal since the last transfer window, of whom 320 have signed.

Going to be very crowded on the beach.

Here’s our January 31 transfer list since 2011.

  • 31 January 2011: Nacer Barazite never played a league game for Arsenal, but was sold to Austria Wien.  He later moved on to AS Monaco and FC Utrecht.   
  • 31 January 2011: Gilles Sunu loaned to Lorient.  After the loan spell he signed permanently for them having never played for Arsenal in the league.
  • 31 January 2011: Kyle Bartley loaned to Rangers.  He later moved on to Swansea.
  • 31 January 2011: Ryo Miyaichi completed his move to Arsenal.  He looked tremendously promising, but injuries appeared to hinder his talent and he was consigned to a range of loan deals before moving on.
  • 31 January 2012: Thomas Eisfeld joined Arsenal from Borussia Dortmund for £420,000.  Despite some highly promising performances he did not make the final breakthrough and eventually joined Fulham.
  • 31 January 2012: Ryo Miyaichi went to Bolton on loan and played 12 times for them before making one final English loan deal with Wigan.  After this he moved to Europe.
  • 31 January 2013: Chuks Aneke loaned to Crewe for the second time.  After failing to break into the Arsenal team he moved on to Zulte Waregem in the Belgian League.
  • 31 January 2013: Monreal signed for £8.5m from Malaga to cover for the injured Gibbs.   Despite his low fee he went on to play both at full back and central defence for the club and by 2015/16 was seen as a fundamental part of the new back four.
  • 31 January 2014: Arsenal agreed a loan deal for injured Kim Kallstrom.  Despite Arsenal making it clear that they did not pay his wages until he was fit, the press always labelled it a “controversial” move.
  • 31 January 2014: Daniel Boateng joined Hibs on loan.  He returned to Arsenal at the end of the season and then moved on to Södertälje FK
  • 31 January 2014: Ju Young Park joined Watford on loan having failed to make any impact at all with Arsenal, his transfer remaining one of the most puzzling of the modern era.
  • 31 January 2014: Frimpong sold to Barnsley.  The club later released him after just a handful of games and he moved on to Russia where unfortunately his discipline problems continued to follow him.

Please note: for this week, please send any article for Untold to and not the normal address.

Insult of the Day – for the chairman of the FA

How many fruitless pranks this ruffian hath botch’d up     (12th Night)

The Untold Books

Untold Arsenal has published four books, with a fifth coming shortly.

The latest is Arsenal: The Long Sleep 1953-1970 with an introduction by Bob Wilson.   Details of this and our other titles can be found Arsenal Books on this site.

34 comments to Arsenal confirm Nigerian duo signing as Debuchy heads for the exit

  • colario

    The draw for the 6th round of the Cup will be made later today. This info is from the BBC Website.

    The draw for the FA Cup fifth round will take place live on BBC One at 18:20 GMT on Sunday.

    It follows MK Dons against Chelsea, which is live on the same channel (kick-off 16:00 GMT).

    The draw will be conducted by former Chelsea manager Ruud Gullit and ex-Liverpool defender Mark Lawrenson.

    Here are the numbers to look out for:

    1. West Bromwich Albion or Peterborough

    2. Leeds United

    3. Arsenal

    4. Manchester United

    5. Reading

    6. Liverpool or West Ham

    7. Manchester City

    8. Shrewsbury Town

    9. Watford

    10. Carlisle United or Everton

    11. Crystal Palace

    12. Blackburn Rovers

    13. Bournemouth

    14. Tottenham Hotspur

    15. Hull City

    16. MK Dons or Chelsea

  • colario

    You can hear the draw being made by listening on line to the BBC Radio 5. It is past of the phone in program ‘606’

    The program is called ‘606’ because initially (in the dim and now distant past) when KO time was fixed at 3pm on Saturday. BBC then had an hour of results and reports and interviews which finished at 6.

    There was then a short news broadcast and the new phone in program was to start at 6 minutes past six and so we have ‘606’.

  • serge

    Only on Untold can you discover the origins of broadcast programmes.
    Just another 152 days till the next transfer window.

  • Bleeding gums Murphy

    The words life and get spring to mind.

  • apo Armani

    With this: “We have 23 players in training – and plus two [the injured two] is 25 – so unless people go out we are not on the verge of bringing anybody in.” Even a monkey would quickly come to the conclusions; A/ Arsenal are NOT in any ‘injury crisis’ and B/ No further signings for the first team.

    But I guess the media/blogettas are just a click or two below the IQ levels of the average monkey 🙂

  • bjtgooner

    Nice one Sir Hardly!

  • Josif

    Given that Wilshere has suffered another set-back and that Rosicky picked an injury that will rule him out for at least a month, I reckon that another midfielder signing would be a wise thing to do.

  • topanlesmana

    I saw Yarmolenko actions in You Tube the other day. Man, he’s a very talented player. Fast, sharp, with very good skill. This one will be good for us,i think.

  • Ando

    A question: can anyone who looks at Untold, register likes or dislikes? Or is it only contributors / correspondents? I’m not sufficently au fait with Internet thingies to know the answer to this – can anyone help?

    The reason I ask is that Colario’s comment already had 1 dislike when I logged on, on a completely non-controversial theme. What is there to dislike about it? OK – there’s a slight discrepancy in the first two lines, regarding 5th or 6th round draws but, other than that, it is just factual.

    I’m curious.. and will have a good laugh if my comment gets disliked!

  • Jambug

    “If you have been reading Untold for a while you’ll know that we’ve been stressing that the amount a PL club spend on players has very little to do with their subsequent success,”

    And if you have been reading my responses to this you will know that that, as a statement, is simply not true.

    How, under any circumstances you can imply that the amount a Club spends on players has ‘very little’ to do with there success is beyond me?

    I posted the following back on January the 8th to a similar statement from Tony in an article entitled:

    ‘If Ferguson had gone to Man U in 2015 he wouldn’t have lasted a season’.

    I don’t know what he thinks of my comment and the data I provided because Tony chose not to respond.

    But to use isolated downturns in the fortunes of the ‘big spenders’ as ‘proof’ that money isn’t all that important is tantamount to suggesting Clattenburgs good performance against Chelsea is proof that all is well with the referees.

    Or similarly that because for one season we saw a dramatic rise in our penalty fortunes, all was well with the refereeing.

    Anomalies and freak events, even for as long as a season can and do happen, but they are exceptions to the rule.

    so to suggest that Chelsea and Uniteds trials and tribulations are proof of the fact that money isn’t that important is not worthy of this sites usual fine work. Such a misjudged conclusion on such scant evidence undermines this sites usual principles of avoiding knee jerk reactions and the application of data taken over long periods of time.

    Surely both Uniteds and Chelseas falls from grace are much more to do with managerial upheaval than anything else?

    If you truly don’t believe that Chelsea and United will, eventually spend there way out of the messes they are in then I’m sorry but you are kidding yourself.

    Anyway, I think the following statistics show just how dominant money does make you, the odd anomaly accepted.


    January 8, 2016 at 2:57 pm

    I know Tony and others at Untold have for some time been behind the thinking that ‘it’ is not necessarily all about the money. The ‘it’ in this case being the winning of trophies.

    Well I have to say I don’t see it that way, especially when you are talking about the top end spenders.

    I believe it is ALL about the money.

    Since Roman Abramovich landed in West London in June 2003 this is a list of the Premiers leagues top Net spenders over the 12 years since then, up to and including last Summer:

    Man City £800 Million = £66 Million per season PL/FA/LC = 4

    Chelsea £632 Million = £52 Million per season PL/FA/LC = 11

    Man Utd £450 Million = £37 Million per season PL/FA/LC = 9

    Liverpool £283 Million = £23 Million per season PL/FA/LC = 2

    Arsenal £98 Million = £8 Million per season PL/FA/LC = 4


    PL = 0

    FA = 2

    LC = 4

    So out of a possible 36 domestic trophies a mere 6 have been won by Clubs that are not one of the top 5 Net spenders.

    This is a breakdown of the trophy distribution:

    30 of 36 (83%) have been won by the top 5 Net spenders.
    24 of 36 (66%) have been won by the top 3 Net spenders.

    If you only count the PL and FA Cup it’s even worse.

    22 of 24 (92%) have been won by the top 5 Net spenders.
    20 of 24 (83%) have been won by the top 3 Net spenders.

    So what does all of that tell us?

    MAN CITY are the top net spenders but with just 4 domestic trophies over the 12 years are only the 3rd most successful trophy winners. BUT, this is easily explained by the fact that the oil money only arrived relatively recently, and of course they entered a battlefield already inhabited by 2 mega spenders in Chelsea and United.

    CHELSEA are the second top Net spenders but the most successful with 11 trophies. This is easily explained due to the fact they had there windfall at a time when nobody, and that even included United at the time, had resources anything like those that had suddenly became available to them.

    MAN UNITED are the 3rd top net spenders and the 2nd most successful with 9 trophies.

    Those 3 have easily spent the most and as a consequence have TOTALLY dominated the domestic scene.

    Behind them, spend wise, we have Liverpool and Arsenal. And this is quite telling, because despite Liverpool having a Net spend almost 3 times that of Arsenal, it is arguable they have been nothing like as successful as Arsenal, at least domestically.

    Liverpool 1 FA Cup 1 LC

    Arsenal 1 PL 3 FA Cups

    So Arsenal have won double the domestic trophies Liverpool have, as well as 100% CL qualifications compared to Liverpools inconsistency on that score.

    The big saving grace for Liverpool of course is a Champions League triumph.

    In closing I think the unavoidable conclusion is, although not infallible, the correlation between Net Spend and trophies is utterly undeniable.

    –And there you have it. If you don’t agree, fine, but please tell me why, don’t just dislike.

  • Jambug


    Who are in our first domestic cup final?

    Yep, 2 of the top 5 spenders.

  • colario

    @ Ando.

    I am afraid I didn’t spot my typo until it was too late. Once you hit ‘Post comment’ that is it.

    Any one can hit the ‘like’ or ‘dislike’ and it should register your choice. You don’t need to be a member and you don’t need to comment in your order to use the ‘like – dislike’ option.

    I sometimes express my approval of a post without making a comment in the blog.I will do this when I think I have nothing to add to what has been written.

    The advantage of this way of expressing approval of someone’s post for me is that I can show my appreciation of a comment quickly and move on. Whereas before I had to stop and write something and I don’t always have the time to do this.

    The down side of this ‘like dislike’ facility is that anyone can just anonymously press the ‘dislike’ without giving an account of themselves. Sometimes it is evident that morons do just that.

  • Brooks

    I have been an avid follower and reader of untold arsenal for a while now (over 2 years maybe) but in defense of the views raised by Jambug. I am surprised that Tony and now Sir Hardly Anyone are yet to respond to Jamburg’s argument as regards “money being a major factor for success”. Untold prides herself with facts and evidence; Jamburg has done that, so why ignore him?

  • Jambug, I don’t agree with the analysis because I argue that money is not a guarantee of success. I agree that spending money can lead to success, but it doesn’t always. That’s my point.

    So the demands that Wenger should spend money in order to get success, are false, because although spending is one part of the way to get success, by itself it is not enough.

    The figures show this. If spending money were a guide to success, then Chelsea would not be where they are, and nor would Liverpool and nor would Man U.

    Spending money helps, but it is just one factor. So is a brilliant youth policy. So is a tactically astute manager. Probably other factors too, but you need all of these.

  • I dont understand the point about the first domestic cup final. Do you mean 1927 or something else Jambug?

  • Brooks I didn’t answer, because I felt I had made the point before in other articles. But as you have asked, I have now written an answer.

  • serge


    Tony doesn’t respond to comments that often and to tell the truth “money being a major factor for success” is a nailed on given and doesn’t really require a response. Who would be daft to enough to argue with it?
    One point here though: is Untold a she?

  • serge

    He’s now gone and proved me a liar

  • sammy the snake


    Money is important, but not the only criteria for success. It is only one of the factors in achieving results.
    Look at Liverpool who have spent far more than Arsenal but don’t have the results to show for it.
    Look at ManU in the past two years. They have spent a shed load but are struggling.
    Look at Leicester who are overachievers without breaking the bank.
    Look at Arsenal, who are overachieving their expenditure.

  • Col

    “the amount a PL club spend on players has very little to do with their subsequent success”. It would be interesting to see if Arsenal would even be top ten this season if they hadn’t signed Ozil, Sanchez and Cech. Of the 3, arguably only Ozil failed to settle quickly.

  • Jambug

    It’s Hull at the ‘Ems

  • Jambug

    The league cup final this year.

    Do you understand the other, slightly more important post or do I need to explain that again as well?

  • Jambug

    Sammy the snake.

    Did you bother to read my post?

    I touched on, and explained everything you mentioned.

  • Jambug

    Tony, sorry somehow missed your 5:43 it seems to of appeared out of sequence. Anyway, I will attempt to address your points.

    1)I don’t agree with the analysis because I argue that money is not a guarantee of success.

    -Well I’m afraid looking at the stats I produced it seems it is.

    But given there are 3 mega rich Clubs spending similar amounts every year they cant ALL win everything every year, so by definition big spenders will occasionally miss out, it’s almost impossible for them not to. Once you have 3 in a similar scenario then of course other factors come into it. Such as a change of manager. Injuries. loss of form. Bad refereeing Etc. etc. but again, as I have shown, over time the TOP 3 spenders win by far the most trophies irrespective of variances in these ‘other’ factors.

    2)So the demands that Wenger should spend money in order to get success, are false, because although spending is one part of the way to get success, by itself it is not enough.

    -I agree, with regard to Wenger. That is why I, and many others lord Wenger as a genius to of maintained our top 4 position these last 12 years, BUT the fact still remains we have won less than Chesea, city and United since the money arrived.

    It is also no coincidence that we only managed to win our 1st 2 trophies, after Wenger was able to buy 2 ready made World class players for far more than we had ever spent before.

    3)The figures show this. If spending money were a guide to success, then Chelsea would not be where they are, and nor would Liverpool and nor would Man U

    -I’m sorry Tony but this is a seriously floored argument. As I said, to take Chelsea’s bad season in isolation is simply misleading, it’s similar to trying to say all is well with referees because we got a few more penalties last season.

    The use of such short term statistics to debunk those of a 12 year period is simply wrong and not worthy of you.

    Man Utd are having a bad time but we all know why. United where Left in the poo by Fergy, then for some reason took a gamble with Moyes. LVG is struggling but are you seriously suggesting that United will not be back?

    And as for Liverpool, over the 12 year period, they are the 4th biggest spenders, and the 5th biggest trophy winners. But even with there massive spending it is still only half of that spent by each of the other 3. So with a plethora of Lorded managers, with ‘tactical nous’ they have still failed to make any significant inroads into the top 3.

    4)Spending money helps, but it is just one factor. So is a brilliant youth policy. So is a tactically astute manager. Probably other factors too, but you need all of these.

    -Of course they are factors, but I have never disputed that. What I have disputed is the statement in the original article:

    “PL club spend on players has very little to do with their subsequent success,”


    How is that statement in any way true?

    Southampton have a brilliant youth policy. What have they won?

    Martinez, Rogers, where lorded as tactically astute managers. What have they won?

    And yes there are other factors. Luck. Referees. Injuries. and more besides I’ve no doubt, but just look at what the last 12 winners of the PL have in common.


    Yes, all those other things can make a difference, but Chelsea seem to do fine without a brilliant youth policy.

    City arguably have won the PL without a great manger.

    It’s arguable neither of those Clubs would of got near the PL title without the money.

    I contest, a great manager with a great youth policy alone, without big money, is just not enough, as Wenger proved for 10 years.

    This IS NOT having a go at Wenger as anyone who knows me will attest. I idolise the man. I think he is the only manager on earth that could of maintained our top 4 status with the budget he had.

    I think, now he has a bigger budget he will compete for the title, he may even win it this year.

    But do I think he will be able to maintain that top spot if City, United and Chelsea continue to spend at the rate they do, and we continue at the rate we do?


    Do I blame Wenger or Arsenal FC? No.

    Do I want to go down the benefactor route? No.

    I love, and am proud of the way our Club is run within it’s means, but I am realistic enough to know that in the end the money will win.

  • Jambug

    This from Walter 15/12/15

    “And here we are. Arsenal. And their manager. Wenger. All these years he got ridiculed for doing what no other team can do despite having all the money in the world to buy all the players they want. Wenger had no money but kept us in the top 4. All the abuse aimed at him all these years by fools who thought they could do better than him because they were experts in computer games. All those pundits who jumped on bandwagons in blaming Wenger but who never really were good enough to manage a pub team themselves. Shame on you!

    In the difficult years after spending our money to build the Emirates we always have supported Wenger for his achievements of keeping us near the top. We also got abuse and were ridiculed. But I think that in this season it just becomes clearer and clearer even for the biggest Wenger haters, that it is not an easy job to have done what he has done. WITH NO MONEY AVAILABLE and fighting against the likes of Chelsea and Manchester City. If they don’t realise and admit now what an enormous job he has done, they are too blinded by hate or just stupid. For me Wenger has performed a labour of Hercules in keeping us in the top 4 all those years.”

    I agree with every word but it doesn’t really tie in with:

    “PL club spend on players has very little to do with their subsequent success,”

    Does it?

  • WalterBroeckx

    as Chelsea, MU and MC and Liverpool all spend buckloads of money you still have at least 1 of those teams ending up with nothing at all. It can help but it is not the only criteria to win. Of course if you can spend as they have spend it should give you an advantage. But not a 100 % certainty

  • Jambug


    “It (Money) can help but it is not the only criteria to win……”

    Ok it’s not the ONLY criteria but my contention is that it is by far and away the most important one, and to say:

    “PL club spend on players has very little to do with their subsequent success”

    is ridiculous.


    30 of 36 (83%) have been won by the top 5 Net spenders.
    24 of 36 (66%) have been won by the top 3 Net spenders.

    If you only count the PL and FA Cup it’s even worse.

    22 of 24 (92%) have been won by the top 5 Net spenders.
    20 of 24 (83%) have been won by the top 3 Net spenders.

    supports that.

  • Ando

    @ Colario
    Thanks for that. I did have a laugh at the 8 dislikes I got – thanks fellas!

  • Josif

    I think that the whole debate is a really interesting one as both sides use firm evidences to prove their point. Kudos for that.

    I can understand where Tony & Walter come from. Since Ferguson had hanged his red telephone connected with Mike Riley’s office on, Manchester United have spent hundreds of millions on a team that entered into first post-Ferguson season as a team that had won the league with four games to spare or so. Liverpool have spent hundred of millions and let’s not start with Tottenham, I must not laugh too loud out of respect for my neighbours. Manchester City are yet to progress beyond Round of 16 in Champions League after net-spending of almost a billion pounds. BILLION POUNDS. Give me 800 million pounds and 7 years with Cardiff City – if I don’t get them to CL quarterfinals, hang me at Trafalgar Square! (It’s just an expression, don’t take it literally.)

    Then, there is Jambug’s side of the story that is also correct, except I would add a bit of detail that could resolve the whole dispute: it’s true that money itself doesn’t guarantee you a success but if you don’t spend money, it’s very likely that you won’t anything. Roberto Martinez’ Wigan stand out as an FA Cup winner against all odds but they were relegated three days after their victory over Man City in FA Cup Final.

    Here is a thing both sides have missed here: my guess is that FA and their Cerberus PGMO will never allow a club that doesn’t promote spending as a solution to win the league. It wouldn’t bode well with the broadcasters, with their sponsors, with the footballers’ agents.

    As my conclusion, I would add this: it’s not down to quantity of spending and intelligence of the spender, it’s also about the current state of the team and whether the player bought fits into the system (Arsene spent more money on Gervinho than on Čech). You can spend 70 millions only to find out you have bought two square pegs for two round holes and yet you can spend just 10 millions only to find out you have bought the final piece for the puzzle you have been solving since 2004. If you don’t spend money, however, you won’t win the big prize.

  • Brooks

    Please don’t take my use of the pronoun “she” to literally mean that Untold is female.. I could have used it or he (rarely used)..

  • Brickfields Gunners


    From The Brickfields Gunners Blog 31/1/2016.

    In a last ditch move to allegedly save Arsenal’s faltering title challenge , manager Arsene Wenger has moved in swiftly in an attempt to sign three members of last year’s EPL champions , Chelsea .

    The players in question are Gary Cahill , Willian and Loïc Rémy , who are known to be unhappy with the turbulent chaos that has befallen Chelsea . Even though there has been an upturn in Chelsea’s fortunes , yet each for his own reason wants to quit the club .

    Gary Cahill is keen to be playing weekly , and fast to keep his place in the England team going to the European Championships in France 2016. Willian is still unhappy at the unceremonious dumping of the ‘Moaning one’.

    It is thought that both these players would be happy follow him if he gets the Man Utd manager’s post. But as there are no guarantees on this ever happening, especially as the job may go to the soon to be returning Gary Neville , from his brief Spanish sojourn .

    As for Loïc Rémy, who Arsene Wenger admires and has had attempted to sign before , the signing of Alexandre Pato , is probably the last straw , as he moves down the pecking order . And with Chelsea often only using one forward or sometimes none at all ,his exit will not come as a shock to their fans .

    For Arsenal fans these 3 signings would finally satiate their calls for a solid spine in the team , especially after the success of Petr Cech , who was the first or base of that mythical spine. And that they all have won the EPL before together will only bring new hope to Arsenal fans .

  • Jambug


    Thanks for your input.

    I agree there are 2 sides to this.

    Money isn’t EVERYTHING, that is true.

    But that isn’t exactly what I was arguing. My point was that the statement that:

    “PL club spend on players has very little to do with their subsequent success”

    is ridiculous, especially in the long term.

    You see the thing with the kind of money these Clubs are spending is, that no matter how many mistakes they make, no matter how average the manager is, if you just keep spending you will eventually get it right.

    In Chelseas case I have absolutely no doubt they will be back in there scrapping for the title next year, irrespective of who is in charge.

    In Uniteds case I have no doubt they too will be back next season, new manager or not.

    I love Wenger and think he is a genius, but he wasn’t genius enough to overcome a spending differential of X10 was he?

    That is for 10 years the big 3’s net spend has been 10 times that of Arsenal. Around £50 Million per season to Wengers average of around £5 Million per season.

    It seems that now the purse strings have been loosened hee may have as much as £20/£25 Million Net to spend per season.

    Now if this is the case then that is where I think I see Tony and Walters point.

    Are Arsenal FC and, is Wenger himself, good enough to use all those other factors, buying nous, youth promotion, continuity, to overcome what is still a massive difference in spending power?

    I honestly don’t know. I certainly don’t think many others would be, but Toney, Walter and others, obviously think he is, and all credit to you.

    I think Fergie would struggle, as would Mourhino. Klopp has gone to a Club that has already been Net spending around £25 Million per season and have failed. Will Klopp move them up to title challengers under those circumstances? Somehow I doubt it, but only time will tell.

    With Arsenals wonderful youth policy, existing squad, new found wealth and similar playing ethos, ask yourself, will we attract Pep Guardiola to be our next manager?

    Not a chance.

    But why not?

    Surely a magnificent fit and a challenge to get the pulse racing, no?

    Or on the other hand perhaps Pep isn’t stupid and as always will follow the money. Not the youth policy. Not the luck. Not the injury record. The MONEY.

    Ask yourself, why do you think he does that?

    At the risk of repeating myself, long term, if Chelsea, City and United maintain an average £50 Mil net spend year on year, and Arsenal, with the looser purse strings, maintain an average net spend of £25 Million per season I think we will still struggle to compete, despite Arsenal/Wengers genius in all the other aspects.

    I really hope I’m wrong, and it is possible that Wengers genius is enough to overcome such a burden.

    I suppose only time will tell.

    But please lets not here that Money has ‘very little’ to do with it.

  • Jambug


    Sadly I was right and it does indeed seem as if Guardiola has chosen the money over youth, ethos, history, loyalty etc. etc.

    A shame really as I think a challenge, rather than an absolute ‘gimme’, would of enhanced Peps reputation immeasurably.

    As it is, what on earth is he going to achieve, or prove, by going to yet another money printing operation?

    Not cities fans fault though. They must be over the moon. They already play a wonderful brand of football, heaven only knows what they’ll serve up with Pep in charge allied to there endless pit of money?

    Should be fun to watch, if a little painful at times.

    One good thing to come from this is that Chelsea and United must be sick, especially United.

    How the mighty have fallen. Still, they can always have Mourhino.

  • Josif


    I am disappointed with Guardiola’s choice as well. I still think he is a guy that could replace Wenger one day as he is a gentleman who wants his teams to play beautiful football that stresses out technique over muscles. It’s no wonder that Arsene had wanted to sign Messi, Pique and Fabregas almost a decade before Guardiola gave important roles to those three players in Barcelona or that both Arsene and Guardiola have signed Alexis Sánchez.

    Contrary to the popular belief, Guardiola is neither just a cheque-book manager nor a guy who lays into a bed that was already set. He had to make a major overhaul at Barcelona before 2008-09 including showing the exit door to Ronaldinho, Deco and others in order to make them the best team in the world with a huge influence on the game of the Spanish national team. Xavi hadn’t been one of the best in the world before Guardiola and Iniesta’s talent had been suffocated with signings like Deco.

    If Bayern and Man City face each other in Champions League this season, it’s going to be a really weird game, that’s for sure. A huge psychological test for Manchester City players.