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March 2021

Transfers: the two long awaited deals are done as we do the hi-jacking and the splurge.

By Sir Hardly Anyone

You can always tell when the national press think they are on to a true story rather than the meandering gibberish they feed us most days, in that they get one of their own people to write it up, with none of this “according to the Daily Star, reporting that Y Cawr is claiming that…” stuff that fills up a few centimetres of text.

So the Telegraph broke the story with

Shkodran Mustafi deal given green light by Valencia and latest on Lucas Perez

and of course

Arsenal’s confused approach to summer transfer window laid bare by Lucas Pérez Martinez off-on interest

which was there to hide their own confusion having just run the news that Ronald Koeman was in for the forward.

The Guardian has

Arsenal agree £35m fee with Valencia for Shkodran Mustafi

telling us that “Perez, who has been compared to Leicester forward Jamie Vardy…”

The Daily Mail has

Arsenal in late £50m summer splurge after agreeing deals for Shkodran Mustafi and Lucas Perez

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and the Independent has

  • Coleman criticises Wenger for Ramsey risk
  • Wenger admits he is ‘scared’ of retirement
  • Man Utd block Arsenal move for Jones as West Ham close in on striker

and of course under their listing of AFC Bournemouth, as they have been running all season…”Could this be Britain’s most expensive airport link?…”

And so we are off.

On Mustafi the Guardian says the “Germany defender expected to travel to London on Friday for medical” and below that “Purchase of Lucas Pérez will take club’s spending close to £100m mark.”

Meanwhile everyone who tries to make things more correct on blogs says, “Bugger, there’s another of those wretched acute accents over the ‘e’.”

The essence of the deals is in the Guardian’s words…

“Arsenal have agreed to pay £35m to sign Valencia’s Shkodran Mustafi, with the purchase of the Germany defender and Deportivo la Coruña striker Lucas Pérez set to take the north London club’s spending in the summer transfer window close to the £100m mark.”

Not enough for the little aaa I’ll be bound, but rather interesting for most of us on planet Arsenal.  And tucked away in this there is the news that vis a vis Lucas Pérez  “Arsenal have gazumped Everton in the “race” for his signature.”   (It is always a race.  Never a gallop, never a canter).  Even with Mr Wenger who is notorious for meandering it is still a race.  However it gives the aaa the chance to run their favourite type of headline: “Arsenal buy Everton reject.”

Actually although Lucas Pérez was allegedly

at Everton as a teen before going to Sampdoria in 2012, this sort of thing happens.  A player is young, there isn’t a gap for him, and the club sells him on.  If the club gets a reputation for holding back young players’ careers then youngsters start avoiding the club.

Meanwhile of course during all this we had the usual fiasco with papers running the story that Ali Bulut, reported as LP’s agent said that the player had done a deal with Arsenal, and Valencia saying not only was he not for sale, but also that Bulut was not his agent.

So let us have a gander at the apparent new boys.   Lucas Pérez…  His career seriously began with PAOK in 2013/14 when he played 32 league games scoring nine times.   Then with Deportivo he scored six in 21 league games in 2014/15, before 17 in 36 in 2015/16 so his ratio is on the up.  He got the winning goal in a game last Friday.

And in passing we ought to ensure that we don’t get confused with

  • Ayoze Pérez Gutiérrez (born 29 July 1993), simply known as Ayoze, plays for Newcastle.  Not that one.
  • Diego Fernando Pérez Aguado nicknamed “Ruso”  – a retired Uruguayan player- and you can just imagine the aaa trying to claim that Mr Wenger got the wrong Perez in error..
  • Hernán Arsenio Pérez González is a Paraguayan who plays for RCD Espanyol.  No not that one.
  • Enzo Nicolás Pérez Seguí plays as a central midfielder for Spanish club Valencia CF.  Not that one.

Lucas, as I believe he is known, to avoid confusion, began his career at Atlético Madrid, can play centre forward or on the wing, which I guess explains Campbell’s move out on loan, given the return of the prodigal Gnabry and the keeping of Giroud.

And here’s another snip from the Telegraph who seem to have a very similar line to the Guardian:

47 comments to Transfers: the two long awaited deals are done as we do the hi-jacking and the splurge.

  • colario

    I suppose going on the theory ‘if you name every one you can think of as an ‘Arsenal must buy but have again failed.’ You must surely get one name right’ So the media got at least one player right.

    The media. Goals against the media.
    Goals for the media 1

    And the winner is – The media!

    We notice the news of the transfers broke as the media’s imagination (some might say ‘attention’) was on the draw for the Champion’s league.

    I can’t help but wonder if the timing was deliberate.

    Arsene did come across as being definite about buying so I thought it a possibility. When he isn’t buying he is coy on the subject.

    When he is positive it can mean that a deal has been done.

  • colario

    Ouch correction
    Goals against the media 99
    Goals for the media 1

    And the winner is The media!

  • Justin Chinedu

    Good one. I wish to see the news on

  • bnsb

    Arsene finally swoops…

    Must have been soaring and circling for hell of a long time! Life of predators is not easy anymore.

  • Apparently the Everton connections are untrue, according to a correspondent so I have added the word allegedly – it doesn’t really affect the article too much, but some people do get a bit upset about this sort of thing.

  • Leon

    “Intriguingly, Lucas has been compared to Jamie Vardy who Arsenal tried to sign from Leicester at the start of the transfer window.”
    Surely nobody could be as cosmetically challenged as Vardy.
    I wasn’t at first convinced by Lucas’ stats (only being slightly better than Giroud’s), but seeing as how you note that he’s “on the up” think he could be an asset with his counter attacking style.
    Mustafi is already a highly rated international central defender so will be an improvement on Gabriel who I don’t think much of. If it’s true that Chambers is likely to go on loan and Holding to remain as a squad member then i’d say we have the defense sorted (when the injured return).
    So at last it’s all falling into place.

  • Leon

    Lucas was one that we were not connected with at all. So how did the blogs & media miss out on him? Mustafi has been on our list for most of the transfer window so they got that one right eventually.
    Can’t really say that I’m all that fussed about their predictions & tips. It’s all harmless fun and nothing to get high blood pressure over.

  • adetayo

    After all these,I still read an article saying arsenal fans aren’t satisfied. It might be true for some bt I can’t help but wonder how the media got into some fan’s head and know what they are thinking. Seems harry potter is doing wonders on them.

  • WalterBroeckx

    I couldn’t find Lucas Péres on the list that contained 105 players linked to The Arsenal this summer…. LOL… the media knows…. NOTHING!

  • Lanz

    Off trend, I’m sorry. Tony, is it possible we get an article on, “great players don’t want to come to Arsenal”, a claim made by some of the least expected people- like those who became great at Arsenal because AW allowed them a chance rather than “splash the cash”!!!

  • Zuruvi

    Thanks Arsene Wenger for getting us another “specialist” striker. At last Giroud can get good competition for his position. Healthy competition is always good. When Giroud is off-form or injured we will have Perez as a replacement striker … (and reverse is also true).

    I must admit that I don’t know how good or bad Perez is. I however have faith in Wenger that he has selected the right type of striker that we need.
    What is “interesting” is that Perez doesn’t even have a single cap at national team level. Could he just an average striker or he is just unlucky to never have been selected?

    I hope both of these suggested transfers are true. I will know it’s when I see the stories on our website

    If the suggested transfers are true, i just want to say thanks Arsene for you have indeed addressed the obvious weaknesses in our squad.

  • thierryhenry22

    Great point Walter! They’ll never have the upper hand on our club! COYG

  • Goonermikey

    I see the Mirror came up with a spectacularly predictable anti-Arsenal headline of “Wenger’sPanic Buy”. They know jacks hit about who we did or did not want to buy but because we didn’t pay £80m for him or they’ve never heard of him before, it’s a “panic buy”. They get worse.

  • The Harlequin

    I hadn’t heard much or anything of this Lucaz Perez fellow before yesterday, so when it was posted on BBC(I tend to find they usually don’t start posting transfer dealings as actual headlines till they are fairly ‘real’, but till its on we can’t be sure!) I decided to take a look at him.

    What I noticed from the videos I could find of him and analysis of his playing styles I could find that:
    – Speedy
    – Good at running behind defences
    – Not afraid to take on players, Good dribbling
    – Good anticipation and positioning
    – He has good interplay with team mates
    – He looked pretty calm in front of goal

    His weaknesses that I could find mentioned where his defensive work and aerial ability. It’s hard to see weaknesses through videos though as they tend to mostly highlight his ‘best parts’.

    I think he has the qualities to work well into the Arsenal team, passing, interplay, bringing in other attackers and gives us something a bit different to Giroud too. I think you could even play them together effectively. If we are about to sign this guy obviously Wenger thinks so too, I can definitely see reasons as to why we’d want to sign him. The only problem is he isn’t worth £100m so he must be crap really! right?

  • Alex

    Hahaha it is presumed done and dusted deal….wait is not on

    Few seasons back remember Higuain..???

    Everyone wss having a go at Mr.Tony
    Rumors remain untill officially confirmed by the club i guess.

    The other side of the coin is to sell not only buying i mean.So why we are not selling players ???

    The tried and retried tested and retested that they do not live to the expectation is it hard to off load them ??
    30 Million this days seems an easy reach to many clubs . Hmmm

  • yj

    Even a dead clock is right twice a day. The media by throwing so many stories around will eventually get few right. It’s just like statistics, if you want a desired outcome, but you don’t know how to achieve it, just keep trying all possible outcomes, eventually you will get the desired outcome!

  • Polo

    Biggest laugh this from The Telegraph.
    ‘Perez and Mustafi are incoming
    Stuff is happening, stuff is happening. This is incredible.’–arsene-wenger-to-miss-ou/#update-20160826-0928

    The media’s obsession with AW is unbelievable.

  • WalterBroeckx

    No Spanish caps so far and only getting more goals as a striker can be explained by the fact that until 2 seasons ago he played as an attacking midfielder (Xavi, Cesc, Iniesta, Santi….. no chance to get in Spanish team) and only since the last two season has been put on the field as a striker.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Interesting buys, cannot claim,to know a lot about Lucas, but I am sure they will have used our own scouting system to do their homework on him. Not a household name, tho Wenger will undoubtedly improve him….but he could represent one of the smart , under the radar type buys that will become increasingly important as fees go through the roof for even average players.
    Mustafi is clearly a decent defender, already a Weltmeister and apparently a good friend of Ozil. Come on Mesut, sign da thing!
    Not sure where this leaves Gabriel, undoubtedly a decent defender, but seems to lack communication skills with his colleagues, if this is the case, beyond frustrating.

  • Justin Chinedu

    Oh gunners..When arsenal delays to buy because the manager knows what and whom he needs, or because we have no sugar(oil) daddies to pay 55 Million, they are called useless, the manager clueless. When arsenal buys, it becomes a “panic buy”. The media, sorry these robots need their batteries charged or changed.
    Off point; Henry as an assistant coach of Belgium, good one for him, i hope they allow him remain a sky pundit while on the job.
    On point; Let every Gunner be happy and support the team, we are actually better than many.

  • Zuruvi

    @Justin Chinedu.
    I’m not sure I wish Thierry Henry well. The guy was our footballing hero, we love him very much, the club has bent over backwards to support Thierry over the years even though he “ran away” from us and joined Barca. The club even assisted him to get his coaching badges.
    I loved Thierry as an Arsenal player. I hate Thierry the Pundit.

    I don’t understand why Belgium, a nation with such brilliant players, would choose a young failed manager (Martinez) and an untried wannabe (Thierry Henry) to be their national team managers. Belgium obviously don’t take their national team seriously.

  • Gooner S

    I have already seen some comments stating Perez is a panic buy! There is no pleasing some folk.

  • Andy Mack

    “I wasn’t at first convinced by Lucas’ stats (only being slightly better than Giroud’s)”.
    I suspect you haven’t looked as Girouds stats are actually pretty good.
    That’s not saying he’s the greatest or that he doesn’t miss ‘sitters’ or that he doesn’t have poor games, or even that I’m not pleased we’re possibly getting an alternative, but really his numbers have always been much better that he’s given credit for.

  • Zuruvi

    Thanks Walter.

  • marcus

    Tony…On the whole Perez/everton issue, it was in fact mustafi who was at everton 4 years ago before he left for Sampdoria. Hopefully he’ll already have decent english.

  • Fishpie

    My immediate reaction to the transfer news (assuming it all goes through) is that Perez may not be the 25-30 goals a season kind of striker to shift us up a notch but, given the players who were available and given the rumours that prices wanted by the selling clubs for average to good players were well over their value, getting a player like this for about £20 is good business by Mr Wenger. It seems to me we have covered for the loss of Wellbeck with a similar quality level of player. Different style too which may give us better penetration. As for Mustafi, I hope he proves to be a solid addition, cos in my humble opinion, that’s what we need at the back. He may prove to be better than both Gabriel and the new Captain if he can form a strong partnership with Koscielny. Plus I like Holding who looks calm, composed and comfortable on the ball. Good luck to the new lads. We may not have got a “big” name, and our summer transfer strategy looked worryingly sloppy again, but we have spent a sizeable sum which at one point (in fact at many points) it didn’t look as though we would.

  • Zuruvi

    @Walter, so Lucas Perez is actually a midfielder who only started playing as a “striker” only 2 seasons ago (at age 25)?
    This could mean that with additions experience in a striker role he could improve much more.

    I just hope Le Prof will provide Lucas Perez with the necessary coaching and he will continue to improve in this new striking role.

    If Lucas can score 17 goals at Deportivo, I think he should be able to score 25 or more goals at Arsenal.
    I like the fact that Lucas is a very quick player who can dribble too. Giroud is rather slow and cannot dribble.
    Giroud is a very strong player and a greater header of the ball … These are qualities that Perez doesn’t seem to have.

    Giroud and Perez could therefore complement each other’s strengths.

  • Zuruvi

    @Andy, Giroud is a good striker. His goals stats are good.
    However, many of us are disappointed at the high number of sitters that he misses.
    Scoring just an average of 14 Premiership goals per season over a 4-year period is very low if you are the main striker for an highly creative team like Arsenal.

    I like Giroud. He however should score more goals based on the high number of very good chances that Arsenal creates.

  • Samuel Akinsola Adebosin

    Has the signing of Lucas Perez been an after thought or a panic-buy by the Boss to avoid not getting another striker signed at a bargain price before the deadline day comes and gone?

    The media are saying Arsenal rejected the option to sign Lucas in July as not been good enough and instead went after Vardy.

    I for one had expected the Boss to sign Alvaro Morata from Real Madrid as a top top quality option and cover to our 1st striker Olivier Giroud and China Akpom to be 3rd on the would be my own strikers pecking order at Arsenal.

    But I can’t have this in my own way as I am not the Arsenal manager who has the final say on any Arsenal transfers. After Lucas was signed although not yet made official by Arsenal but it would eventually with that of Mustafi I believe. I said to my self, even if Arsenal wanted to sign Morata and can put Madrid’s asking price on their table, would Morata agrees to be on the bench as a 2nd striker? Maybe that’s the main reason the Boss didn’t pursue the signing of Morata to a logical conclusion as he has already guaranteed Olivier Giroud a regular starting start. This is the reason Vardy has said made him not to come to Arsenal because the Boss refused to guarantee him a starting role if he was signed.

    Lucas has a similarity of 17 goals scored in last season’s campaign with Leicester City’s Riyad Mahrez. I don’t know if the Boss will play Lucas as an attacking mid-left winger and still continue to experiment with Sanchez to lead the line for us. No! There is a problem there, because if fully fit to start, both Giroud and Sanchez will always be starting. So Lucas will be a squad player for option and cover?

    The protesting AAA fans might have made the Boss to over-buy with their continuous agitations to buy buy. Otherwise, was there a serious need for us this summer to buy a new striker no. 3 and a CB no. 6 as we already have Olivier Giroud and Akpom to Mann the striker position and 5 CBs in the squad with 3 of the 5 available to play? Maybe NO & YES. But now Arsenal oversized squad has forced Campbell and Chambers to go out on loan. Whereas as top developed and developing Gunners they should be in this present Arsenal 25 man senior squad to be submitted to the FA soon for registration. I know I will get thumbed down for this my comment.

  • Samuel Akinsola Adebosin

    From your comment, I think I’ve now understand the reason behind the signing of Lucas Perez. His is to cover for the injured Danny Welbeck absence in the squad. Hmm, this is interestingly satisfactory action taken by the Boss.

  • Tom

    If Arsenal do indeed sign both players, the Summer spending will be around the £100m mark. What of your little ” Arsenal have a Summer Transfer budget of around £54m , but only if they dip into their £50m overdraft facility ( something they have never done btw) ” theory?

  • yj

    The perspective of a Deportivo fan on Lucas Perez. I think its worth a read.

  • Cantremember

    Think both could fit in well, and anyway I trust Arsene to identify what we need and what he can work with and improve.

    Whats interesting however is that in the press conference AW said he expected himself to be very busy during the last three frenetic days of this window.

    Why would that be if these two transfers are practically done and dusted?

    Would that mean more can be expected, or that these two buys are red herrings?


  • Mandy Dodd

    Perez…..the thinking mans signing

  • BarryL

    If the reported signings are officially confirmed we will have 32 players nominally in our 1st team squad – of whom 6 are injured. The rumour is Chambers will be sent on loan, and Debuchy also appears to be agitating to go.

    When 3 of those injured players return – namely Rambo, Iwobi and Welbeck – that will be difficult news for players like Theo and the Ox, as well as Jeff, Gnabry, Akpom and Sanogo, though these last four have youth on their side. To get good rotation of this squad will require successful runs in the League and FA Cups.

    One sad note is that Joel Campbell has gone on loan again (though as AW said, he needs to play regularly to develop fully. He had a good run in the middle of the season with a few goals and some great assists, and he did well in pre-season. He was certainly better than Theo and the Ox, so they have a critical season ahead

  • Arvind

    Perez sure, if it happens – its unfortunate that we went and bought a CB too for a ridiculous price. Don’t get me wrong, that is the going rate – its just that it doesn’t make the price any less ridiculous. Thanks to Untold though, I have not clicked on a single f***** link except look up David Ornstein once yesterday.

    If these guys do come? good luck to them and I hope they do well – but its just sad, that we’re also spending such huge sums now.

  • Pat

    When Perez finally appears as a signing on the Arsenal web site (sorry to even now still be cautious) we must remember that no member of the mass media predicted him as an Arsenal signing.

    He will be very useful as an example when all this idiotic transfer speculation starts again. I will certainly memorise him to mention in many a probably pointless debate.

  • Andy Mack

    Zuruvi, I agree he’s not the greatest and as I said, I’m pleased it looks like we’re getting an alternative. But whilst his ‘per season’ isn’t spectacular, over the years he’s regularly sub’d or injured, so when you look at the minutes played per goal he really does have very decent figures (but obviously he’s no Aguero). I’d much rather have him than Vardy as it’s taken Vardy 4 years to have a really good season and half of that wasn’t even PL football.
    When a real top CF becomes available then I hope we go for him but he’ll need to be someone we can get a few years out of rather than a 29 year old costing £75m or whatever Juve paid (having said that, they can play more years in the slower pace Serie A).

    Off topic, it’ll be interesting to see how the big strong Ibra handles a PL season at 34 year old.

    Meanwhile Lucas looks like a decent alternative for our present options.

  • Arvind

    I think I’ve begun to dislike football now, more and more, because of the soap opera that is the transfer window. The “fans” with their wrist slashing, chest thumping and incessant whining are the main reason for this.

    The moment either of these has a bad game, that’s it. Sell them in January. Stupid Wenger.

  • Richard

    Well a transfer window nearly done and Wenger has done what he said he would do and got in three players . Of course he also got three prospects in so good transfer business, though the newest two are “panic buys” according to some people. Well I am pleased this window is coming to close and can start concentrating on the football.

  • Gord

    Many hours ago, I posted the results of looking for information at the two Spanish clubs. No evidence was found, which is probably expected. I just looked again (10 minutes ago), and the same result stands.

    I also had this:

    The writeup at which mentions Carl Jenkinson was interesting. Apparently he had a variety of smaller injuries as well as the one big one. So Arsenal have been rehabbing much of him, not just a single part.

    From, some whorenalist was trying to get Wenger to say that Chambers was being disposed of. Wenger seemed to say that Chamber’s future was still positive with Arsenal. If he goes out on loan, it is because he needs more time playing competitively.


    The wordpress gremlins seem to have eaten the message, which is why I am reposting in an altered form.

  • Polo

    @ Tom,

    ‘If Arsenal do indeed sign both players, the Summer spending will be around the £100m mark. What of your little ” Arsenal have a Summer Transfer budget of around £54m , but only if they dip into their £50m overdraft facility’.

    If Arsenal do have £100 million to spend on transfers then Collins Sarri Stratham Investments and myself was wrong and have eggs on our faces. But we wait for the 2015-16 Annual Report to be release to see the financials.

    Only speculation but look like Arsenal are off-loading some players to find the funds.

    Holdings transfer was £2 million – Arsenal sold Hayden for £2.5 million.
    Asano transfer was £5 million – Campbell went on loan, don’t know the transfer fee. Chambers could go out on loan, and Debuchy could be sold or go out on loan according to The Metro. If Debuchy was sold Arsenal would want at least £16 million to recoup the fee they paid for him.

    I guess let see in 4 days time when the transfer window is closed.

  • Tom

    I think You’ll find Debuchy will be hard to move on. £70k per week and on the wrong side of 30, the most likely solution might be a loan in which Arsenal subsidizes part of his salary.

    Also, Arsenal and Wenger in particular doesn’t plan his transfer purchases on the off chance he might sell someone later to off set the prices of incoming players.

    But lastly , the CSS estimate was so riddled with naive accounting that you really need not wait for any new financials to shed new light on the matter –
    they were simply wrong, but I give you credit for responding and not hiding on this issue even though you got it dead wrong.

  • Polo

    @ Tom, why would I hide? If I’m wrong then I’m wrong, there is no shame in it.

    Your comments about the accounting treatment sound similar to the Arsenal Supporters Trust reply to the CSS report on the AST website. Why is it naive?

  • Tom

    The CSS stated Arsenal had £4m available for the Summer transfers, plus another £50m from the overdraft facility( something they have never used for transfers). The club have already spent around £100m, which is in line with what mostly everybody predicted they had available for transfers – that’s a discrepancy of £96m – and you want to wait on results of some loans to see if you were wrong?

    “Why would you hide?”

    Usually when someone is so wrong on this site, they either :
    a) abandon their position and claim they never held it
    b) ignore the question and never respond to it
    c) accuse the other party of having no life and keeping files on posters – this one is the most amusing one 🙂

    Obviously that’s not you, but still a crazy position on transfer spending none the less.

  • And so a number 9, Valencia really did need the money, dragging this one out into the Premiere League campaign start. But this Defender, is what was required, that’s a potential 8 years of Investment, if Keown can break down Gabby, that’s 8 years covered. plus 19 year old and 20 year old CB both English. Gnabry, Iwobi, M-Niles, Willock, R-Adelade. You need pace and endecour and a willingness to get back. If needs me, we have bodies.

    Monreal, Gibbs, look set to fight it out for a year, unless, it’s a bit of a gamble AGAIN Mr Wenger. And our other right back, because Jenkinson needs time to recover, what do you do if God forbid, someone manages to catch Mr lightning feet out there?

    A plethre in Midfield, a little short out wide, but Lucas can play wide and up front as can Theo, but it’s still risky, you lose a player in each position if one is crocked. Theo is scoring, but is still missing in games for too long.

    Our team has some heart now, what it needs is a tactical leadeer, Laurent ‘is’my Captain, but we need the pure inspiration. We need a second Alexis.

    I am very proud of my manager and his achievements, that boy is a number 9 and with the number of chances we create, he’d need to get worse to get less goals and he is build for the league.

    13 is the magic number!

  • I hope with the changes he made, he robbed the right club and Manager of a signing, Everton are getting a bit strong, Fergie style, he’s adapting, but to a degree, never losing his faith. Now I can’t see why if we didn’t spend much over £70m, and had £200m the year before we only bought Chech and then Eneny, we must have mmmmm……. yeah we only spent one windows transfer kitty, in 3 years and already had £200m, so mmmmm….. well, I am thinking another ozil, alexis……. mmmm…..

    I hope you are lying about the I don’t think so