By Bulldog Drummond
The terrible injury to Danny Welbeck has highlighted another aspect to the growth in players running down their contracts. Danny, like Ramsey and Cech will be free to leave the club this summer and find themselves a new club to play for.
But of course if the player gets a serious career threatening injury the player will not be able to find another club – at least not until fit. Which can mean unemployment, and hence no salary. That’s why so many players are not going down the route of running the contract out.
Yes they can gamble on a bigger signing on fee, but there are risks too. But even if the player does get himself fit again he will struggle to get much of a deal until he has proven himself.
Of course one never knows the inside arrangements – whether Arsenal have not offered a deal, or whether Danny has been holding out for something better.
But whatever the cause this is now the fate facing Danny, and is a potential danger for all other players who allow their contracts to run down. Of course in the past Arsenal have been renowned by standing by players who are seriously injured – although this practice has caused much anger among some who call themselves Arsenal fans, particularly over Diaby.
But inevitably a lot of the media has used Danny’s injury as an excuse to pour into yet more speculation as to who we are going to buy in January. Now there is a desperate and urgent need, we are told, to buy another goal machine.
However the one thing we can always say about football is that times and attitudes change. As for example with this headline in yesterday’s Birmingham Mail:
“Aubameyang, Lacazette, Xhaka: The Arsenal stars ready to pile more misery on Wolves.”
Just a short while ago the inclusion of Xhaka in that list would have brought howls of derisive laughter from some who call themselves Arsenal supporters, but gradually the feeling is growing that the statistics we saw last season about his displays were not to be dismissed in the normal “you can prove anything with stats” manner.
But the Daily Star has got things of the future sorted already as the headline “This is breaking news, Juan Mata is going to Arsenal” appeared yesterday, although Football Transfer Tavern went off on another tack, saying that we are going to buy Juventus defender Medhi Benatia, with them allegedly getting that from TuttoMercatoWeb.
Coming back to today’s game however…
Mustafi is the continuing hate figure, as with a Football Transfer Tavern headline “Mustafi dropped” which is pretty much just following the Daily Star’s piece that claimed that Arsenal fans were raging at Unai Emery for continuing playing Mustafi. Sorry Mr Emery, but we did warn you, you only had two months before it started.
Football Fan Cast are in the mix as well claiming that 65% of Arsenal fans want Mustafi dropped. Mind you it was ever thus: the Sun had Arsenal in meltdown as early as last March. Maybe the club was then put back in the fridge and hardened up again.
The over arching impression that we get from the media is that Arsenal are walking a tightrope of expectation, and one slip up will result in “huge disappointment” (the Guardian) and leave the club in turmoil. Reading the commentaries you most certainly wouldn’t realise that Arsenal are unbeaten in their last 19 league and cup games against Wolverhampton and we are unbeaten in the last 16 league and cup games.
Here’s the top of the table after saturday’s games…
A win will obviously take us closer to the “not a trophy” position, and increase the gap between our goal difference and that of the Tiny Totts, so we should be aiming for a winning margin of some significance. Anything other than a win would result in quite an outpouring of grief.
- Arsenal v Wolverhampton: the form, predicting the score, and the last time we played them
- Which teams are benefitting most from referee decision making this season?
- Danny’s out, but how does that affect our immediate chances?