So as the players head off for their holidays the speculation will increase about who’s staying and who’s going and, most of all, who’s coming in.
There was official confirmation from the club of Wenger’s quotes about bringing in people quickly and at a meeting with fan’s last night Ken Friar assured them that there was money available and Arsene will be able to roll over his transfer budget, which was in surplus remember, from last season. During the session he broke off from discussions to take a phone call from the manager and suggested that a signing was ‘imminent’.
Other important points from that meeting were that 92% of the Highbury Square flats have been sold and that no Director of Football position will be filled. The search for a new managing director is well under way and they’re hopeful somebody will be announced soon. Thanks to Tim Payton from the AST for the info.
In terms of players Gilberto says he’d love to see out his career with Arsenal and will sit down and talk with Arsene over the next little while. While I’m not sure he should be first choice I’d be happy if he stayed another season. He’s a model professional and he adds depth and experience to our squad.
Lille’s Jean Makoun is another to add to the list of potential arrivals while the same article suggests we’re going to go after Sevilla’s Seydou Keita.
Arsene spoke about Eduardo and revealed that physically he’s expected to make a full recovery. It’s the mental side of things he has to get on top of. And that is going to be the big battle, I think. It does take great strength of character to come back the same from an injury as serious as that but the Crozilian is strong in the head anyway. Fingers crossed that the physical side of things goes well and he doesn’t end up like Diaby who, since his horrific injury, has been plagued by constant niggly injuries.
The Sun says Jens Lehmann has taken a parting shot at Arsene Wenger by suggesting if he were a coach in Germany he’d have been fired. I’m not sure it’s a parting shot, just a comment outlining the differences in the football cultures – Arsenal are looking at continuity and longevity rather than short-termism.
The boss reveals that he sees Theo Walcott as a winger for next season despite his long term future lying up front. He says:
Education-wise, it’s fantastic for him to be playing in midfield first. He has to play for the team, he has to work, he has to run back, to close down and still keep his potential to go in behind defenders at the right moment.
I really would have no problem if Theo were to start next season as first choice on the right hand side of our midfield. We saw over the final months of this season how much he improved and what he brings to the side in terms of pace, attacking threat, goals and assists – something which other players who played in that position this season did not. Another season where he matures more, gains more experience and provides some end product would be perfect for the young man. I think now that the boss needs to prove he’s got faith in him by playing him more regularly as you do get the feeling that with that extra confidence Theo will theriouthly thrive.
Meanwhile Man United are set to beat us to the signing of Cardiff startlet Aaron Ramsey. I know our interest in this young man is very real, so it’ll be interesting to see if we try and compete.
And that’s about the size of it. Thanks to everyone for your feedback re: the move yesterday. Of course there are always little snags when moving a site so large and we’ve tried to keep on top of everything. If you do notice anything else please drop me a mail.
Update: There are some issues with the RSS feed which we know about.
Right then, more tomorrow.