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June 2021

Despite all the negatives about Arsenal’s parlous state, Arsenal make a major signing

By Sir Hardly Anyone

Yes I will admit it; I have been saying that all the stuff about transfer rumours is rubbish given that there are round about 76 days to go before the transfer window creaks open and something of the order of 137 days before it slams shut and shatters into bits again.  Besides with the future of Mr Wenger unknown how can the club be continuing with negotiations?

Of course the fact that we have signed a player – and indeed a young up and coming player of note – shows that I know nothing, but then everyone knew that anyway.   Even so, given the circumstances, I still think it is quite remarkable.  I’d say it points to Mr Wenger staying.

So in case you ain’t heard yet, Arsenal have signed Sead Kolašinac (note the accent); he will transfer on 1 July.  What is particularly interesting is that just as with Lucas Pérez, Everton, currently endlessly talking about how they have managed the deal of the century over their stadium, and how they are on the up overall, (rather than on the down, which is what new stadia normally offer), have been pipped at the post.

There has indeed been a lot of chatter about Kolašinac going to Everton, just as there was with Lucas, but in the end Arsenal just strolled in and got their man.  At least that is what the “sources” say.  The Guardian has it along with quite a few other places, although the Telegraph’s top Arsenal story is that Tottenham supporters are trying to find a phrase to equate to St Totteringham’s day.  Big news indeed.  So big you have to pay to read the article.

Anyway, Kolašinac was going to Everton on a free at the end of his contract in the summer with Schalke, and was in “advanced talks” – which probably means they had got past exchanging names and pointing out that they are currently celebrating the 30th anniversary of them last winning the league and the 22nd anniversary of last winning the FA Cup.

Arsenal, it is said, got their man by the complex and unusual ploy of offering more money to the player, just as they did with Lucas.  What an underhand trick – especially since the media have been telling us forever that Arsenal lose players because we don’t pay them enough.

Milan and Chelsea were also interested, and the Guardian calls the players decision “somewhat surprising” because of the situation of Arsène Wenger.   But as a right back he plays in a position where it has looked as if a newcomer could help a lot to give the team more balance on the two sides of the pitch.

What is also interesting is that Arsenal moved this past year to a policy of taking up all 25 places on their Premier League rosta, while virtually every other club has stuck to the idea of holding just 21 or 22 registered players (forced upon them because of their lack of “home grown” players to take up the spare places.  It looks like Arsenal’s policy of bringing through “home grown” youth players  is going to continue, allowing cover for injuries and cover for loss of form and a full squad of 25.

Kolašinac was born in Germany, and played for Germany at Under-18, 19 and 20 level before moving country and playing for Bosnia and Herzegovina, where his parents were born.  He has played for them 23 times.

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He is 23 years old and here is his playing record:

Seasons Club Games Goals
2012–2015 Schalke 04 II 8 2
2012– Schalke 04 89 4
National teams
2011 Germany U18 1 0
2011–2012 Germany U19 11 1
2012–2013 Germany U20 2 1
2013– Bosnia and Herzegovina 18 0

He played his first game in the Bundesliga on 15 September 2012, and his first Champions League game in December 2012, and made his debut for Bosnia on 18 November 2013.  His current contract was signed in June 2013 and then extended to end this summer.

As for injuries, which is what always excites the media when a new player is signed, in 2014 he tore the anterior cruciate ligament of his right knee and was out for around six months.

According to Wiki (or what the bloggettas call “reports”) he can play across the back line, and has regularly played not only as a centre back, but also a left back.   This sort of flexibility is of course incredibly helpful in covering for injuries and loss of form.    He is described as “physically strong and tough in his physique, clever defensively on the pitch and defensively consistent in winning one-on-one duels against his opponents.”

Last season he played 20 league games and scored three goals in the league, with another ten appearances in the German cup and Europe.

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30 comments to Despite all the negatives about Arsenal’s parlous state, Arsenal make a major signing

  • MickHazel

    Is it a definite signing ie has it been confirmed by Arsenal, or is it ‘according to reports’ status?

  • Sir Hardly Anyone
    Your report is not worth reading, there is nothing negative in it
    What`s the point of writing about Arsenal if you don`t write anything negative ?

    Nice one!

    I bet this will be under reported as usual

  • Goonermay68

    Hes coming on a ” FREE”. Big deal. WENGER OUT

  • Leon

    He looks a bit of a tough character who I think will be used mostly on the left, but if he’s as versatile as you say will get plenty of game time.
    Excellent signing that was completely “under the radar”
    And coming on a free………does it get any better?

  • WalterBroeckx

    A tough player? So he will get a few red cards in his first season….

  • Andrew Crawshaw

    I believe he will be expected to play at Left back so expect either of Gibbs or Monreal to leave in summer, possibly both if Bramall produces more rapid than expected progress

  • Leon

    Tough looking, and good in one on one challenges. Don’t know his disciplinary record, but he’s scored a few goals.

  • WalterBroeckx


    With the problem of hooliganism sticking up its ugly head again in countries like Russia (and even this week in Lyon and Madrid) I have had a question from a student from Belgium who will be in London next week.

    They are writing a paper about hooliganism and are more interested in how supporters look at this and how the governement in England has been able to get rid of it.

    He will be in London next weekend and hopes he can contact a few people who can shed a bit of light on this.

    You can contact him with the following details:
    Name : Luther Rommens
    Student Journalistiek AP

    You can mail him directly and tell him that you want to contact him as you have seen my plea.

  • WalterBroeckx

    4-5 yellow cards per season and no red cards in the bundesliga. So a softie in fact 😉

  • insideright

    His versatility may mean that we are going to a back three which would push our normal full backs further up the pitch and give us more height at the back

  • Polo

    The report started from a Bosnian news website, which claimed he had signed a pre-agreement with Arsenal. He play left back for Shalke, a possible replacement for Monreal who is in his 30’s. If the report is true, then it’s good that Arsenal has taken the initiative early.

    He’s on a free transfer not on £50+ million so it might not go down to well with certain section of the fanbase.

  • Andrew Crawshaw

    One position filled – ten to go?

  • Leon

    Wilshere injured again

  • Menace

    Wilshere was kicked by Kane on the ankle in a follow through after a goal attempt. This was a contact injury & not due to Wengers training methods.

  • jet

    Sadly this is yet another of the many emails we are now getting which come from a non-existent email address and so is not published. “Sadly” because I wanted to reply to it!

  • Sammy The Snake

    Hurray! Another free transfer. I hope he works out better than Sanogo, Chamak and the rest. Have we had a free transfer that worked out in the past few years?

  • Menace

    STS – TH14 & Flamini returning free transfers. Worked out ok.

  • GoingGoingGooner

    OT What is Pochettino on?…The whole world was against us last year?…trying moving down Seven sisters to feel what it really means.

  • Josif

    What we would get with Kolašinac (“š” is pronounced similar to “sh” in “English”) is not height. At 183 he is shorter than both Mustafi (184) and Koscielny (186).

    He is built like a tank though which is one of his nicknames among the Bosnian fans. Other nicknames are The Hulk and The Destroyer. He is extremely strong and in 50-50s he should be more competitive than either Nacho or Gibbs. He can play in either 3-men defence or 4-men defence as a full-back, a wing-back or a central defender.

    Unlike many others, I see his pending arrival (still not confirmed!) as a goodbye to Nacho. Gibbs enters his final year of the contract but he is a HG-player and we are yet to see what consequences Brexit will bring. Speaking of Brexit, someone said at Twitter that Arsene has responded at Brexit by bringing the Muslim players to Arsenal (Elneny, Mustafi, Xhaka, Kolašinac…to join Mesut).

    Kolašinac accidentally injured Jese from Real Madrid three years ago and almost finished his career. Still, for his hot temper and conservative background Sead “Seo” has a decent disciplinary record which suggests that he is more clever than Xhaka.

  • Polo

    @ Josif, thanks for the analysis, I watch clips on YouTube and thought to myself if the ref let this guy play his way, he’s going to be an animal at LB. If an agreement was signed as suggested, can’t wait to see this guy play next season.

  • Alex

    Is it a tough player ??
    So been told about Gabriel
    So been told about Xaka

    Once met Le prof

    footballing brains sucked out of them, their aggression tamed and their passion, gone.

    I expect same with who ever signs and who is to blame in here …..ref
    Same all same

  • blacksheep

    Ssss Sammy,

    If I offered you a pint would you insist on paying for it?

    If a car you want to buy costs £10k would you pay £20k?

    would you have taken Ibra at Arsenal? He was a free transfer I recall.

  • Josif




    Only people who hadn’t watched Xhaka expected him to be the beast at DM. My first impression was that he is much more of Petit than Vieira, at least in terms of height, weight, prefered foot and passing range. His 50-50s were less than impressive at EURO 2016 when he was bullied off the ball by more powerful midfielders. Xhaka was/is more an attempt to give our attack the diagonal passes forward in order to speed it up, especially when Cazorla is unavailable. He is extremely useful against teams that sit deep and put no or almost no pressure on our midfield because of his passing range. Unfortunately, Xhaka doesn’t seem to work well with Coquelin, our only DM who attacks the ball aggressively, and his favourite partner is a stand-off-type Elneny which puts our back four under extreme pressure when we don’t have the ball.

    Kolašinac is a different story to Xhaka and I don’t get the moans about his signing. Kolašinac is one of rare Bosnian players I think Arsenal would do well to sign them.

  • Josif


    As for Gabriel, I have a feeling he has been always considered as a back-up defender or someone who might become a new Koscielny on the ground of his agility. Sadly, his positioning and possible language bareer have never worked in his favour.

  • Leon

    I’m reading on Caught Offside that Kolašinac is now not signing for us, instead preferring AC Milan. Such are rumours & gossip.
    Ah well……….

  • Brickfields Gunners

    @ blacksheep – 16/04/2017 at 12:47 pm – Your quip about the beer , reminded me of an old Benny Hill joke .
    He played a foreigner who is complaining about not really understanding the strange uses of the English language , for when he asked a local ,” Would you like a beer ?” ,the guy replied, ” Not half !”

  • inconvenient fact

    All player coming to arsenal always come with potentialsof becoming great but the pressure to deliver at all cost and all times, no protection and taming by the officials, the hate in the media and some fans boos snuff out their aggression, passion and performance!
    ozil can get the sticks he is getting elsewhere where he can express himself with freedom.
    sanchez would have given more if he is protected like hazard
    giroud would be a cool blooded goal machine if he is not being reminded daily that he is not qualify to lead arsenal line
    xhaka would be more at it if he is not being maliciously targeted
    gabrel confidence would not be on the down had he not be punished for being steel
    bellerin is being booed, maybe barcelona interest will not allow us to see his best before he elope
    if kolnasic is being linked with chelsea, man utd or city, he is a great player wenger should have snappep up.
    so linking him with arsenal make him poor to some!

  • inconvenient fact

    * ozil cannot

  • Jojo

    Not that I’m a fan of this potential signing..but it seems that this article was posted way prematurely in an over-eager effort of proof (I guess) that there’s no crisis at AFC currently.