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August 2021
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The window ends, one thing missing, the game against Wolverhampton

By Sir Hardly Anyone

In the end the one thing that was missing was the apology.  From anyone.  In particular from the hundreds of blogs, websites, broadcasters and newspapers that told us of all the players Arsenal were going to sign, and in almost every case they were wrong.

Just in case you want a reminder of how many tales we were all told trying this…

Aston Villa spent £16m, Manchester United £17m, most clubs spent nothing.  Arsenal spent half a million on Omar Rekik from Hertha Berlin.  That was it.

Mustafi went to Schalke, Maitland-Niles and Willock out on loan to struggling PL clubs

Otherwise Martin Ødegaard and Mat Ryan came in.

In terms of the numbers the foreign grown list is full while the home grown has four places

  1. Alves Soares, Cedric Ricardo
  2. Aubameyang, Pierre-Emerick
  3. Borges Da Silva, Willian
  4. Ceballos Fernandez, Daniel
  5. Dos Santos Magalhaes, Gabriel
  6. Elneny, Mohamed Naser Elsayed
  7. Lacazette, Alexandre
  8. Leno, Bernd
  9. Mari Villar, Pablo
  10. Moreira Marinho, David Luiz
  11. Martin Ødegaard
  12. Partey, Thomas Teye
  13. Pepe, Nicolas
  14. Runarsson, Runar Alex
  15. Mat Ryan
  16. Tierney, Kieran
  17. Xhaka, Granit
  1. Bellerin, Hector
  2. Chambers, Calum
  3. Holding, Robert Samuel
  4. Macey, Matthew Ryan

Those spaces in the home grown list are important for the future, as we prepare for our home grown under 21s to move up.

Who will move up over time of course we never know, as youngsters regularly fail to develop, but we might expect to see Martinelli, Smith Rowe, Nketiah and Saka all playing in the second half of the season, giving us an effective squad of 25 in fact.

Arsenal seem to have seven senior players out on loan (at least according to the official website) which is the largest number I can recall.  Strange days indeed.

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And so on to tonight… Wolverhampton away, the kick off is at 6pm.

We have seen previously that they are in a particularly bad run of form and that even when we take the season as a whole our away form outshines their home form.

In the transfer window Wolverhampton are shown as selling six players and loaning out three.  Their one incoming player was a loan, Willian Jose, and forward from Real Sociedad – there is apparently an option to buy.

The lack of incoming activity despite their disastrous recent form and sinking league position takes us back to the stories Untold (and pretty much Untold alone) ran about the club’s terrible financial position.  Just before the pandemic began Wolverhampton took out a loan guaranteed by the next TV deal payments.  So they were borrowing against future income, just at the time when the income was about to stop, as the crowds disappeared, and indeed football itself ceased to be for a while.

They simply have run out of cash.  Which is why, having no League wins in the last eight games, they have done nothing about their squad.

On the injury front the story at the top runs like this

  • 9 men down: Crystal Palace, Southampton
  • 8 men down: Liverpool
  • 7 men down: Arsenal, Brighton, Leeds
  • 6 men down: Leicester City,
  • 5 men down: Sheffield United, Wolverhampton

Here are our details supplied as ever by Physioroom.com

Player Reason Further Detail Potential Return Condition Status
Mathew Ryan Groin/Hip/Pelvic Injury Feb 01: “Unavailable for Tuesday’s match. Hopeful to be back in full training in the coming days.” 06/02/2021 Currently Being Assessed 25%
Kieran Tierney Calf/Shin/Heel Injury Feb 01: “Kieran is continuing to be assessed for discomfort in the right lower leg. Kieran is unavailable for Tuesday’s match.” 06/02/2021 None 25%
Bukayo Saka Groin/Hip/Pelvic Injury Feb 01: “Returned to full training and his availability will be assessed ahead of Tuesday’s match.” 02/02/2021 Late Fitness Test 75%
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang Family Feb 01: “Auba has returned to full training. Our thoughts and support continue to be with him and his family.” 02/02/2021 Late Fitness Test 75%
Alexandre Lacazette Head/Face Injury Feb 01: “We have to follow the protocols, that we have to test him and make an x-ray. He was completely fine yesterday and he has slept well. I’m expecting him to be available.” 02/02/2021 Late Fitness Test 75%
Pablo Mari Villar Calf/Shin/Heel Injury Feb 01: “Returned to full training and his availability will be assessed ahead of Tuesday’s match.” 02/02/2021 Late Fitness Test 75%
Dani Ceballos Calf/Shin/Heel Injury Feb 01: “Returned to full training and his availability will be assessed ahead of Tuesday’s match.” 02/02/2021 Late Fitness Test 75%

More on the Wolverhampton game shortly.

 

 

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