Arseblog: Thursday 11th July 2002

july 11th

14.44 – Well it’s official. Pascal Cygan has signed for Arsenal.

He was unveiled today during the dullest press conference ever to be held anywhere. He’s tall and bald and he’ll wear the number 18 shirt, and that’s about all we know.

It also seems that the report in the Guardian might have been correct. Arsene Wenger more or less ruled out any further signings before the start of the season. The club confirmed new deals for Oleg Luzhny, Martin Keown and David Seaman.

With regard to other new signings, one central defender is not exactly strengthening the squad a great deal, so perhaps we’re about to see to emergence of some of the younger squad members like Pennant, Aliardiere, Sidwell and Volz. Let’s not forget Tavlaridis and Kolo Toure as well.

There will be those that will criticise for not spending more, but no clubs are spending big so far this summer, and anyway, if we keep buying players, how are the youngsters going to get a chance? Ashley Cole has proved that the academy is capable of producing top quality players, let’s hope we see one or two more this season. The only problems we have with the squad at the moment are

Alex Manninger’s move to Español seems to have broken down, with the Catalan club failing to provide financial documents in time. They’re notoriously tight-fisted in this part of Spain, so maybe there’s still a chance. Celtic are said to be interested, but you have to feel sorry for Alex who was in Barcelona waiting to be presented to the media when it all broke down. Imagine thinking you’re going to live in Barcelona, only to end up in Glasgow instead. No offence intended to any Scots reading, but you surely know what I mean……

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