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February 2021

Arsenal transfer shock; one more player on the way

By Sir Hardly Anyone

The problem is not so much your actual news but removing the exclamation marks and question marks from internet reports and finding the large woman who will apparently open her mouth and warble in order to bring it all to an end later today.

So here is your deadline day shock horror:

Bookies update: Arsenal firm favourites to sign midfield star as Wilshere considers offers

ARSENAL have emerged as odds-on favourites to sign Lanus playmaker Miguel Almiron, according to the bookies

That is from the Express at about 6.30am today, and is the tale Untold ran yesterday.  They are just a bit late.

Meanwhile trawling the interweb I found this in the Mail: “Who says Wenger doesn’t like to spend? The assertion that the Frenchman is tight-fisted is a modern-day football myth.”

And I thought “Wow!”   Something we’ve been saying for rather a long time finally reaches the Mail.  “Wow, wow and thrice wow,” as the inimitable Frankie Howerd might have said.   (That is a very English old person’s remembrance, don’t worry if you don’t get it).

In essence the Mail story says (and this was as of around 6am on 31 August):

“Manchester City are top spenders so far with £168.2m, followed by Manchester United on £145m with Arsene Wenger in third on £96m.”

Of course that won’t satisfy anyone; the commentaries are already being written about how we are £70m behind Man U already, so, as Untold has been saying through much of the summer, no one’s opinion will be changed.  But nice to see the old right wingers have picked up on a spot of reality at last.

What else…

Watch Arsenal Live Streams With

Middlesbrough have confirmed the signing of Calum Chambers from Arsenal 

is one of the more misleading tales since the link takes us nowhere near that story, and I think that the deal is a loan not yer actual full blooded signing – but the Mail has said one nice thing about Arsenal so that’s probably enough for the day.

The Middlesbrough move looks like it is done but as I write Jack Wilshere going to Crystal Palace on loan is still a suggestion.  It seems sure he will go somewhere on loan.

Here’s another spot of confusion this morning:

“Werder Bremen are on the verge of completing the signing of Serge Gnabry from Arsenal, according to the Bundesliga club’s director of sport Frank Bauman.   This contradicts earlier reports that Bayern Munich are set to sign Gnabry on a permanent basis and then loan him out to Bremen.

“However, amid all this news, Arsenal are interested in offering Gnabry a new contract with the club.”

Put that together and it seems to say that no one quite knows what is going on with the man reborn at the Olympics.

Elsewhere here is something that I didn’t expect.

“After 15 years at Borussia Dortmund and Arsenal, Czech play maker Tomas Rosicky is returning to his former club Sparta Prague.   Sparta announced the move on Tuesday. Details were to be announced at a news conference later in the day.”

Let’s wish Little Mozart well – when fit he was the most delightful player and his send off at the end of last season was great to be part of.

Moving away from Arsenal and a couple of miles along the Seven Sisters, what is going on with the Tiny Totts I hear you cry, or rather I would hear you cry if you were following your cue cards.

Once again looking at the Mail I rather enjoyed this

“Tottenham Hotspur sold Gareth Bale to Real Madrid for a staggering total of £90 million on September 1, 2013, and throughout that summer spent £108m on seven players, in a bid to replace the two-time PFA Players’ Player of the Year. Tuesday marked the departure of one of those purchases – Nacer Chadli to West Bromwich Albion – and also the three-year anniversary of Spurs’ final signing of that summer, Christian Eriksen. The north Londoners now have just two of the seven men they bought three years ago…”

That whole story over the years does suggest that the careful approach for which Mr W is so often derided can be better than the rush spend-spend-spend visions of the aaa and their chums in the High Road.

And speaking of people who are funny with money, I wonder if you remember Balotelli.

Liverpool came into the dosh after they got £64.98 million in old money for Luis Suárez.  That’s about £250m in today’s transfer values.   They spent that money on eight players like Rickie Lambert, Lazar Markovic, Alberto Moreno, Emre Can, Divock Origi, Adam Lallana, Dejan Lovren and they sure as hell were going to win the league.  We knew that because every time anyone spoke of Liverpool! you could hear that exclamation mark.

Ah, but I missed a name…

In August 2014, Balotelli joined Liverpool for a fee of £16 million in old dosh, to replace Luis Suárez himself.  Since then he has played 16 games for Liverpool and scored one (yes one, I counted it three times to make sure it is correct and it is one) league goal.  He then went to Milan on loan and has played 20 times for them and scored one (yes I counted that too) league goal.

Now it seems he is going to Nice.  On loan.  The story is Liverpool will continue to pay most of his salary.  Which is rather nice.  [I have to say old chap that I am rather relieved this is the end of the transfer business for another year – it’s not the rumours that get me it is comments like that – Tony].

Of course the reality is that a lot of transfers don’t work out, for Tottenham, Liverpool, Man U, Man C and Arsenal.  The problem with all reporting like this is it highlights one disaster and implies that the club in question is awful with transfers, and everyone else gets it right.

That is never the case – the issue is getting it right more often than not.  Park Chu Young really was an odd signing at Arsenal, and Arsenal History Society did some digging and found some very odd issues in relation to that a couple of years back – but his transfer fee was very modest and clearly it was a gamble transfer.   Others have been fill-ins – older players near the end of their careers who are willing not to play much of the time but just be there if needed.

And of course players’ form can change dramatically in a short space of time, not least through the sort of personal issues that Chamakh was reported to have had during his time with us.

So no one gets it right all the time, and the issue is getting it right most of the time.  Speaking of which Stat DNA – the company at the heart of Arsenal’s transfers has a job vacancy…

In case you fancy applying here are the details…

We are looking for a junior developer to work on Arsenal Football Club’s soccer analytics platform. The ideal candidate will be responsible for implementing new reports and data visualizations on our website, and developing desktop applications for internal use. Some of the technologies we use include C#, .Net 4.5, SQL Server, jQuery, D3, and AWS but we value smart, passionate candidates over specific languages/frameworks. The ideal candidate is a recent graduate with some work experience in desktop or web development (ideally both frontend and backend) with a strong analytical mind, attention to detail and passion for soccer/sports analytics.

This job is located in our Seattle, WA office.

So for all those people who reckon that they know it all and can spot the talent that Mr Wenger can’t see, a mile off, there’s the job for you.  Off you go.   To apply, just send resume, cover letter and links to any portfolio, blog, github repository, etc. to

And now finally finally, this from Sky News

“The United Kingdom has 69 cities, but as it stands Sunderland is the most desperate for transfer news.   Its inhabitants have completed more searches than those of any other city, with Stoke-on-Trent second and Liverpool third.

“Other top queries include ‘When is Deadline Day?’, ‘How much has been spent in the 2016 transfer window?’ and ‘When does the Scottish transfer window close?'”

And to end (which comes after finally, finally): Wolverhampton Wanderers have made 10 signings so far.  Has any club in the league bought more?

The transfer window


16 comments to Arsenal transfer shock; one more player on the way

  • Chris

    Well, I feel the transfers went pretty ok. However, I’d have a hard time understanding our letting Gnabry fully go, unless he has alreday decided on not playing for Arsenal anymore, in which case better sell him how then let his contract run out. Just feels like a lost occasion and I sure hope it is a loan and that he’ll develop well to come back and claim his spot.

  • The BearMan

    When you mentioned “A Fat Lady” singing” ‘me thought’ you were on to sometime. How come you mis the loudest X factor wannabe, Piers Morgan? (Sorry Simon). But our Mister Mirgan has been polluting the environment with bum noises for a generation. Lol

  • colario

    Jimmy went out for a day at the races. Early in the day, just before a race, he saw a Catholic priest in the enclosure blessing one of the horses. In the subsequent race, the horse that was blessed won.

    Jimmy thought this was interesting, so he watched the priest carefully as he went into the enclosure before the next race and blessed a horse. Jimmy went straight to the tote and put £50 on that horse, and sure enough it won. Jimmy kept on following the priest around and every horse the priest blessed, Jimmy backed it and it won its race.

    Towards the end of the day, Jimmy went off to the bank and withdrew his life savings. On the last race, Jimmy watched the priest carefully, put his life savings on the horse he’d seen being blessed, and… the horse came in last.

    Jimmy was devastated, and approached the priest. “That horse you blessed in the last race,” he said, “it came last. What went wrong?”

    “That’s the trouble with you Protestants,” said the priest. “You can’t tell the difference between a blessing and the Last Rites.”

  • Xhaka'spassing

    Anyone a little bit concerned about Jack and Chambers going on loan ?

    I totally understand the reason they are going ie to get regular football which they both need.

    However I’m concerned about our injury record. Santi and Coquelin were out for a very long time last season and Ramsey often picks up niggles especially in his hamstrings. I just get concerned with games coming thick and fast we might pick up a couple of injuries andwe may need Jack.

    Shows the strength we have in midfield that we can afford to let Jack go out on loan

    Regarding Chambers. I think a lone and regular football will be good for him. I think he will be a fine player for us. At the moment though we have Mertesacker and Gabriel out and Debuchy and Jenkinson also injured.

    Chambers would cover that. I’m hoping Debuchy and Gabriel will be back asap though Gabriel is still 6 weeks away but making good progress.

    Thoughts anyone ?

  • Mandy Dodd

    reports suggest our neighbors are about to buy Sissoko from Newcastle, as their manager, Poch, much loved by the WOB/media… attempts to build a team of defensive MFs.
    If true, just hope they dont forget the continuous stream of love from said player aimed at Arsenal and Wenger over the laast few years.

  • Andrew Crawshaw

    Sir Hardly,

    Indeed, Wolverhampton haven’t completed the most inwards transfers. Fulham, for one, have beaten that number with 13 (including one player who was on loan since January now made permanent). They seem to have got their recruitment right as so far they are unbeaten in 5 league and 2 cup games and sit second in the Championship after struggling for the past two or three years.

    They have a two part system which is new to them. Stage 1 is traditional scouting and stage 2 is a numerical statistical approach. Only with both boxes ticked will they proceed with talks with another club/agent/player.

  • Andy Mack

    It’s rumoured (just a rumour so far!) that Zelalem could go to Bolton on loan. I can’t see this happening as they’re a lower standard than last years loan to Rangers so I can’t see the benefit for his future. Maybe if they were in the championship instead of D1.

  • Xhaka – I think you have to keep in mind the 25 rule, and the need to keep players who are not playing regularly fit and not craving a transfer. There is some evidence that I have presented before to the effect that players do appreciate that Arsenal look after their careers rather than just trying to exploit them for a few years, so it could be a balance between their personal needs and those of the club.

    Also remember that Arsenal do not, contrary to popular belief, have the highest injury rate in the league. We are often about 6th or so in the injury table for players out – which you would expect because of the fast game we play with skillful players rather than cloggers.

  • Samuel Akinsola Adebosin

    Reference to my last comment posting of yesterday. I’ve noticed some mistakes on it and I’ll like to correct them as follows:

    Arsenal’s current senior players in Le Prof’s squad as I know them and can remember them are:
    2+3+3+2+6+5=21senior registrable players for this summer campaign. Namely:

    Cech&Ospina. 2 goalkeepers.

    BellerinDebuchyJenkinson KoscielnyDe AbreuMustafiMonrealGibbs. 8 defenders.

    RamseyCazorlaCoquelinOzilOxchamboElnenyXhaka. 7 midfielders.

    WalcottGiroudSanchezPerez. 4 strikers.

    They are all in all the 21 senior Gunners now available for this summer campaign but Jenko and de Abreu have fitness and injury issues..

    My assessment is based on if Wilshere finally went out on loan and Akpom is not included in the senior squad by Le Prof. But why shouldn’t he? I don’t know but Le Prof knows.

    The point I want to bring out is, there is still a space for Le Prof to do one more audacious signing now if he wants to do it. And I want him to still do it by bringing in another top quality striker. Because our current squad strength is still looking to be behind Man U, Man C and Chelsea squad strengths. And also, Leicester and Spurs will all look to catch up with us in squad strength if they succeeded in signing Silmani and Sissoko. I want Arsenal squad to have the edge in squad strength on our 3 main title challengers and leave Spurs and Leicester far behind us as well. By achieving this edge in strength, Arsenal will be better placed to successfully challenge for the title this season IMHO.

  • dan

    Wow, to think that the utd scum spent most of their kitty on one individual. Sad to see Gnabry go, wish him all the best. Is Jenko coming back?

  • WalterBroeckx

    As the inuries to Santi and Coq were both from contact I see no worry about them to be honest. I think the only serial injured player left is Ramsey. Gibbs is also a niggle man but doesn’t play that much so no problem there.

  • After some doubts from this poster, suddenly things are looking good….all is forgiven, COYG.

  • Andy Mack

    If Jack and Serge do go out ‘on loan’ then it’ll be interesting to see if they’re both for a full season or if they’re short term, to allow us to bring them back when they’re fully match fit.
    Calum is at an age where he really needs to be playing regularly, so I can understand why he’s gone for the full season although that still doesn’t guarantee he’ll play much, it’s more likely than if he was only on a short loan.
    Whereas Jack and Serge should be regular 1st eleven on talent alone (in positions where a mistake isn’t usually as major as a defenders mistakes).

  • Wengers Warriors

    I think Wilshere will leave Arsenal at the end of the season. He is such a good player if he could just keep injury free for a season. But I would pick Elneny, coquelin, Ramsey before him every match! Everytime he is tackled I cringe!! Will he get up or won’t he! And the fact players in the premiership target him with tackles doesn’t help! I sometimes imagine Messi in the premiership and I don’t believe he would survive! Our defenders and midfielders would eat him alive!! Maybe wilshere would be a ballon winner if he played in Spain??

  • Flares

    Players from the Far East are often bought for commercial enterprise reasons, not necessarily for setting the pitch alight (Park Ji Sung won a hatful of silverware at Manure despite running around like a headless chicken for most of his 134 games). I’ve been advocating Wilshere leaving for a few years now – he’s a busted flush and his fitness record is appalling. Ankles made of paper. Any purposeful development of the player has been diluted past what is now useful to the long-term investment of the club and I’m glad Allardyce has seen sense. I rejected watching England in the Euro’s due to Wilshere’s inclusion; it was an absolute joke of a decision. Would be interesting to get Sturridge as I believe Wenger would play him in position, but a loan deal only for me.

  • Arsene made the right decision with Wilshere (still sad to see him go)

    One Arsene Wenger.. We trust.