a quick Sunday round-up for you. It seems the newspapers have caught up with the story which Arseblog News brought you last Thursday regarding Jack Wilshere and his new contract. Clearly some of those journalists have been too busy Tweeting because they’re running it as an exclusive. Funny that.
Anyway, as we all know already it’s good news and, speaking to the Mirror, Jack says the current problems at the club are no impediment to him pledging his future.
I know the club are going through a bad time, but it’s not a problem for me. I’m 20, I’ve still got a long way, touch wood, to go in my career.
Players like Robin are older and maybe he thought ‘I haven’t got time any more’. And Cesc wanted to go home to Spain, which was understandable.
But, for me, I’m young and there are older players around me, and also younger players around me. So in the next three or four years, we can challenge for everything.
And this, for me anyway, is the most crucial thing of all and I think we get focused far too much on wages. Although the piggish avidity of footballers is something you can’t escape, I think if a team is successful, or at least capable of mounting a good challenge in the competitions it’s in, then players are much less likely to leave. I think it’s notable that they’re trying to build a core of young British players too who are likely to be a bit less flighty than players from abroad and obviously Jack Wilshere is the jewel in the crown (even if our crown is a bit broken and battered right now).
Unless a player is only interested in money – and we know there are a few of those – there will come a time when he feels he has to move on to achieve things in his career. That’s the challenge this club have, especially with Wilshere. I don’t doubt his connection with Arsenal, or his love for the club having come here at 9, but unless we can win things no amount of wages will be able to keep him. I put Cesc in this category too, the lure of Barcelona was something a bit special I accept, but I suspect had he been part of a team that could properly compete for the title each year it might not have been such a pressing issue.
Jack has also put it up to the players to sort things out and to take some of the heat off the manager ahead of tomorrow night’s game against Reading:
A lot of people are criticising the manager at the moment, but there will be a time when they look at the players and ask questions of us. We don’t want that, so we have to step up and be counted. We need to roll our sleeves up, put our foot in and do what we are good at – keeping the ball.
Which is probably an unintentional slip but maybe one of the criticisms of this current Arsenal side is that it’s not so much keeping the ball that’s a problem, but not doing enough with it when we have it. Still, when Jack talks about getting stuck in you know exactly that’s what he’s going to do and hopefully the rest will follow his lead. More on that game tomorrow.
Here’s a scary line from a piece in the Telegraph about Usmanov wanting more input at Arsenal:
Wenger has significant funds available in January and has tasked Dallas-based transfer-fixer, Dick Law, to strengthen the squad.
Firstly, asking Dick Law to strengthen the squad is a bit like asking Stevie Wonder to drive you around town, and secondly, Dallas based? Is he really? That’s kind of staggering if true and but only from the point of view that as a club we let that happen. It would certainly go some way to explaining some of the reservations people feel about him and the work he does.
Prepare yourselves for the Dick Law strengthening of Jan 2013 as we sign: Rene Higuita, some kid from Ecuador who will go on loan for three seasons before being sent to work in a shoe factory, Frank Lampard, Thierry Henry on loan till the end of the season and eventually tie down Marouane Chamakh to a confidence boosting 4 year deal. Dick Law and Order, motherfuckers.
Johan Djourou could leave the club in January. Hardly a surprise given how little he’s played this season, just 2 Capital One Cup appearances, and the way he’s been frozen out is similar to what has happened to other players before their sales. The worry though is that less Djourou = more Squillaci so hopefully there’s a bit of buy and replace going on.
Finally for today, Gary Neville has an interesting piece on Arsene Wenger and criticism of him in the Mail (sorry). I don’t agree with it all but it’s certainly worth a read.
And just to make sure your Sunday gets off to a good start, how about a GIF of Ryan Shawcross being headbutted again and again and again by Marouane Fellaini. Here you go! Fantastic, fabulous, formidable Fellaini.
Sure, there’s the whole ‘you don’t want to see that kind of thing on a football pitch’, but anyone who doesn’t want to see Shawcross get loafed is dead inside, I tell you, dead.
Have a good one, back tomorrow.