Theo on ins and outs + news round-up

Good day to you all and we’ll start this morning with young Theodore of the clan Walcott who was speaking yesterday at the launch of something I don’t care about.

It seems that as much as we’re thinking about who might come and go, he is too. Let’s start first with what he says about players coming in:

The manager has said he is going to spend and I’m intrigued about who is going to come in. You need to add players. We’ve had a small squad, so I’m interested in who we’re going to get. I’ve heard rumours about Real Madrid’s Karim Benzema. Someone like that would help you hold on to your best players and get the crowd on their feet.

You wonder has Theo heard those rumours from inside the club or just via the press in the last few weeks. I suspect the latter, to be honest, the players are generally unaware of the who the club’s targets are. And the reality of the current situation is that before we can really go out there and do business we need to make clear the future of Nasri and Cesc. I’m with my friend at Gunnerblog over this one. Until those situations are sorted out, one way or the other, it makes life very difficult for us.

I wouldn’t necessarily rule out signings but it certainly complicates things. And Theo understands why players want to leave, saying:

I can understand why some players might want to leave because they just want to win things. That’s totally what it comes down to.

Like, totally. He’s right though. Success breeds success, players like winning things, they like being in a team which they feel can win things, and at the moment we’re a team which looks like it has a big problem winning things. The Carling Cup was the equivalent of missing a 3 foot putt for the Masters and the frustration is clear.

However, the Nasri/Cesc situations aren’t quite as clear cut. Speaking on Twitter last night, Nasri said:

I just want tell you dont listen the newspaper and the rumours i will let you know if something happen [sic].

Which is all well and good until you realise that the newspapers only reported what Nasri said himself in a television interview just a few days ago. They didn’t put words in his mouth, he spoke them. Perhaps it’s a bit of damage limitation and really I have no issue with that but the implication that what appears in the media is just false and should be ignored is slightly insulting. It’s all a bit “I never said them things” when everyone knows he did.

As for Cesc, I’m positive that the team’s capitulations over the last few seasons are a factor. He wants to win things and more than anything he wants to win things at Arsenal, but if we can ask questions and wonder why we keep making the same mistakes, why wouldn’t he? The attraction of Barcelona to any player is clear but to Cesc even more so. It’s the club he grew up with, his family and friends are there and that surely plays a part.

The media onslaught from Spain is beginning with reports on the radio last night that Cesc’s agent will travel to Barcelona on Friday to begin working out a way of making the deal happen. What’s amusing, to me at least, is that Barcelona think they should pay less this year than what they offered last simply because Cesc has spent another year at Arsenal.

We’re sitting here watching Jordan Henderson go to Liverpool in a deal worth £20m, or a 19 year old Blackburn defender valued at £16.5m, and they’re offering us €30m for Cesc Fabregas? I don’t think that’s realistic in any way. Nevertheless, this is how Barcelona like to do business. Get things stirred up in the media etc, but however they try and justify a lower price for Cesc the market dictates his price and, as I’ve said before, the valuations of Torres, Carroll and even Ronaldo to Real Madrid are what it should be based on. There is no discount on one of the best players in the world, sorry.

What is without doubt though is that the futures of both these players need to be sorted out and quickly. Transfer sagas that stretch over the summer do nobody any favours. Whatever about the players themselves but especially he club and the team. We need to be fit, ready and prepared for the new season, knowing who we’ve got and building our team accordingly. No distractions, no ‘will he, won’t he’ stuff. Just get it done.

Back to players coming in and despite having just one year left on his contract Bolton have valued Gary Cahill at £17m. They’d obviously prefer to keep him for a year and let him go on a free and if that’s the case you can pretty much rule out Arsenal. There is not a snowball’s chance in hell of Arsene paying that much money for a player he could get for free in 12 months time.

Also in The Sun a suggestion that Denilson could be used as a makeweight in a deal for Shaktar’s Brazilian winger Willian.

Meanwhile, Sky Sports ‘understands’ that we’re battling with Liverpool for signings of the aforementioned Phil Jones and, rather oddly, Birmingham’s Scott Dann. Jones I kind of understand, highly thought of, lots of potential etc etc, but Scott Dann? That said, if he does sign and displays a fortitutde and metallurgic resistance to opposition strikers we could name him Steely. Sorry. So, very, very sorry.

Not much else happening this morning. I just want to thank you all for the positive feedback regarding Arseblog News. For those asking  – yes, the news will be added to the upcoming iPhone app upgrade next month and it’s already in place for those of you who use the Android app. Details of Arseblog mobile apps can be found here.

That’s that for now. Have fun.