Morning to you, last night I was out celebrating the Mugsmasher’s birthday even though his birthday was last Sunday and we already went out and had some pints for it. What can I tell you? He loves a good celebration and lord knows the football has barely provided him with anything in the last few years.
He’s a bad influence on me though, he really is. It’s rare he makes any kind of suggestion at all until I’ve had 3 or 4 pints, when I’m at my most suggestible, then he gets into a suggestion frenzy knowing I’m in no place to say anything other than ‘Yeah! What a great idea’. I feel used and, frankly, violated, but in a fun way.
Anyway, enough of that and onto football and ahead of the United game tomorrow the team news is that Rosicky and Djourou will be fit, Koscielny too and Vermaelen will have a fitness test but they more or less expect him to be fit. All the same, with no Song, Frimpong, Gervinho, Wilshere or Gibbs we’re going to be stretched but maybe it’ll be better if it doesn’t touch the sides. More on the game itself tomorrow.
There won’t be any new signings in time for the trip to Old Trafford but the manager says he’s on the case and he’s looking to spend some dirty, filthy cash. He says:
First of all, it is important to strengthen up front. It is important that we find one midfielder and one defender as well. So we are still short of three bodies.
My time has been taken up [by players going out] and it was a very difficult summer on that front because we had to face adversity, negativity, but it had to be done.
He also said he’d be looking for a striker because Nick Bendtner, TGSTEL, would be leaving the club. So far nobody has come in with a good enough offer for us to let him go but maybe as the window comes to a close he’ll find himself a new home, despite the fact he has a bit of an ankle injury.
It’s certainly shaping up to be a busy last few days of the transfer window and like the rest of us Arsene is a bit on the fretful side:
Am I anxious? Yes, because I want to do it. At the moment we are a bit short numbers wise. If we get two or three players in, we have the quality to challenge.
Who those players might be is anyone’s guess. We know the club bid for Gary Cahill only for Bolton to make the whole thing unnecessarily public. Our transfer man, Dick Law and Order, went to Bolton on Monday to try and do a deal for Cahill but things didn’t work out as well as we had hoped. From what I’m told Bolton wanted something quite close to the £17m price tag we’ve seen quoted for Cahill all summer long. Arsenal’s bid didn’t come near that, Bolton said no thanks and then that was that.
Until their chairman who, if you covered him with fur and gave him a spear would look remarkably like an Ewok, re-tweeted a Bolton fan’s reaction to the deal and from there all heck broke loose. Arsene was asked about it at his press conference yesterday and said the figures Bolton were quoting were wrong. He also hit out at mini-Chewbacca, saying:
That number is completely wrong. If Gartside can say I am lying I am ready to confront him.. You can believe Gartside or you can believe me. It’s not right. It’s not the truth. The truth is that we never speak about our negotiations. If a club doesn’t want to sell a player it can keep him. When we sign a player we come out here and tell you and keep the price a secret.
He also lashed out his favourite ‘If I want to buy your house’ analogy that he uses quite a lot. In fact, I suspect he goes into shops and uses it.
‘How much are these pears?’
’50p each, mate’
‘If I want to buy your house and you do not want to sell the house but the house is for sale and I offer to buy your house how much is the house if the house falls in the forest and nobody is around does it make a sound?’
‘I will take 2 pears. Or will I?!’.
Anyway, what’s clear is that Bolton need to sell and want to sell Gary Cahill. As my esteemed bloggeague who rambles through Switzerland rightly points out they’ve got debts of close to £100m and holding on to a valuable asset and then losing it for free in 12 months time makes little sense. And while that’s not unusual in football, sooner or later clubs are going to have to face up to the financial facts and deal with them accordingly. Therefore, unless that dwarfy-headed gimp has annoyed Arsenal to the point where they don’t want to deal with him at all, I think we could go back for Cahill and find a price which would keep everyone happy.
Elsewhere, Gervinho says $amir Na$ri is a lying toadfingerer. In so many words:
I wanted to play with Samir because he is a big player. His exit has left me in pain. He promised to be there this season – and then changed his mind.
How could he do that to poor Gervy? Is there no end to his outright nastiness? Nevertheless, the new boy says:
This is a different Arsenal. A new team without Nasri and Cesc. But we need to forget that and to turn the page. Now we must only think about the future.
He also speaks about signing Eden Hazard from his old team and while many rumours abound it’s hard to know if there’s any truth to them at all. I think it would probably be best to step back, think ‘transfer rumour’ and then punch oneself in the testicles repeatedly. Less painful.
Hideous auto-playing video aside this is interesting.
Sol Campbell on what Arsenal need:
Arsenal definitely need a few players to come in and shake things up; guys who are really passionate about winning and won’t accept failure. The fans want that too, they can see that Arsenal are close to being the best club in the world, they’ve got everything there, it just needs people to ruffle some feathers.
Yes, yes, yes and thrice yes with a big pile of yes on top served with a bed of yes and a yes reduction. If you want to be a coaster get yourself flattened and then laid out on a nice table so people can put their drinks on you and not leave marks on the wood. Do not become a professional footballer and be content with the fact that you are a professional footballer. It is about winning. Going through the motions is for people with office jobs who have to use Microsoft Excel every day.
If you’re a footballer, for Arsenal, it should always hurt to fail. One should not lose an important game then spend the rest of the evening in a nightclub surrounded by buxom beauties drinking champagne. What’s interesting is that many of those players have been departed this summer, some on loan, some for a fee to play with their cash hungry ex-teammates, so maybe the overall character of the squad will be better. I’ve long said we need to have more players for whom losing hurts and hurts like if you catch your mickey in a zip. For too long it’s been like a stubbed toe, painful for a few minutes, but then you get a hug from Joey Barton and forget all about it.
I think I’m waffling. Time to stop and eat some bacon. Till tomorrow.