Arseblog: Tuesday 8th July 2003

july 8th

07.37 – So far this close season we’ve lost David Seaman after 13 decades at the club, Super Oleg has gone to Wolves and it looks as if Dennis Bergkamp might have played his last game for Arsenal after being treated shamefully by the Arsenal board.

So, wouldn’t it be nice to get some news about a new signing to cheer you up? What if I told you we were going to sign Patrick Kluivert? Good, no? But what if I said that the deal to sign Kluivert involves Freddie Ljungberg going the other way? Not so good.

I heard this story last night from a source here in Barcelona. We understand that Barcelona sporting director Txiki Begiristain met with Dein and Wenger at the weekend. Barcelona’s initial interest was in Robert Pires, but having already lost Seaman and probably Bergkamp, Arsenal were reluctant to sell an experienced player like Pires. With Pennant earmarked for the right hand side of midfield, it was felt that Ljungberg could go and would bring some cash in with his sale.

A source close to the Catalan club tells me ‘The deal has been done. Ljungberg has discussed a contract with Barça and will sign a 4 year deal and announced later in the week. Arsenal will take Kluivert and €8.5m. He’s flying to London on Wednesday to discuss terms with Arsenal but there shouldn’t be any problem. He’s willing to take a pay cut because his signing on fee [around €2m] will be paid over the course of his contract.”

He goes on to say “Kluivert can’t wait to play in the same team as Henry and has been aware of Arsenal’s interest since March when Wenger first contacted Barcelona about a transfer.”

It’ll be a shame to see Freddie go, but we need to bring in some money and with Jeffers heading for a transfer to Celtic or Birmingham we need another striker. Kluivert will easily get 20 goals a season for us. As well as that, the extra cash will allow AW to spend on a defender with William Gallas or Kevin Hofland the new favourites to sign. Expect some kind of announcement regarding this whole thing in the next 48 hours.

There’s been no further news on the Vieira contract shambles. The more I think about it, the more I think the story was genuine in the NOTW, but there was some kind of last minute problem regarding the announcement. Dennis Bergkamp is in Holland is set to stay there according to his agent. Rob Jansen says “The contract Arsenal have offered Dennis is too embarrassing for words.”

Shut it you pesky little gnome.

Harry Kewell won’t sign for Liverpool – exclusive. The longest running transfer saga of the summer end this morning when Kewell will announce on Oz TV who he’s playing for next season.

I can’t wait.


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