Arshavin Deal Close, Mate Toth Trains and News from Gallas and Rosicky…

News coming out of Zenit is that the Arshavin deal is close - you would expect Arsene to only talk about something like that if it was actually close (or a smoke screen) - but this is what the Zenit coach said yesterday:

“Negotiations with Arsenal continue and the chances are very high that Arshavin will soon play in the English Premier League.”

It’s the clearest statement that has come out – and such a statement genuinely makes me think that there really is something here. We could really get the player in the next 10 days. For those of you who didn’t get a chance to view the video of Arshavin, take a look at this.

I’m sure we’ll hear more on that transfer very soon. Next season may see the real squad emerge – a squad consisting of the return of players like Rosicky, Eduardo, Walcott, Cesc and of course the aforementioned Russian. Former captain William Gallas has also expressed his desire to remain at Arsenal until the end of his contract when he’ll be 33. The Frenchman said:

“I am concentrating on my future, finishing my contract with Arsenal and seeing where I’ll go in two years.”

Joining him in defence may be a player called Mate Toth – a Hungarian defender, aged 18, apparently tracked by Juventus, Real Madrid and Sp*rs. He’s a player with huge potential and highly rated.

Not that I’m a “next season” man or anything – the squad is starting to take some shape – the fringe players have had more than their fair share of playing time recently and they’re getting better because of it. When we do have the likes of Rosicky back and in form, it will genuinely be like signing a new player – yes I know I sound like Arsene!

Arshavin’s proposed transfer was understood to be in replacement of Rosicky, but news coming out at the moment is that the Czech international could be back and back in our squad in time for next season:

“Everyone surely knows that I am not in my ideal state of mind, the one I used to be in when was in Arsenal’s starting line-up two or three times a week. Now I am playing a different game. I have been working hard every single day and want to be back soon. I need to be patient.

“I have to respect Arsenal management’s decision not to comment on my state of health, as it’s their choice and they have been doing their maximum to have me back in action. I am not the first or the last football player who has been sidelined for a year. I am looking forward to when I will be able to say to the fans ‘I am fit and going to play at the weekend’. I believe it will not be a long wait.”

That’s great news from Rosicky. He is a very talented player indeed.

Okay, that’ll do for the moment.

Fingers crossed we sign a few today…]]>

  • http://kierandelaney.net/blog kierandelaney.net/blog

    < ![CDATA[Not only that but last few minutes, Manchester City have issued a statement saying Robinhio has fled their training camp. He just fucked off!

    Apparently he moved to City because they promised Kaka and other big name signings. :D

    City for the drop?!]]>

  • Debs

    < ![CDATA["you're getting relegated with money in the bank"- to man city fans at a game recently lol
    Seems like a distinct possibility now- along with Sp*rs ofcourse!]]>

  • Gooner Get Ya

    < ![CDATA[I wouldn't laugh about Man City not getting Kaka as they have now turned there attention to Arshavin as a possible replacement. If that is true I will not be a happy bunny.

    We finally commit to making a decent signing and actually spending some money on building our squad and some uber rich club strolls in and pinches him at the last minute.]]>

  • Rundhel

    As expected, Kaka turns down Man City – fantastic news on one hand, but very bad news for Arsenal on the other?? City to go for Arshavin now by throwing stupid money at Zenit?!! Just wait and see – cos Zenit WILL take the money – of that there is absolutely no doubt whatsoever!! Don’t put it past Zenit to make the approach to Man City to see if “you would like to make an offer for our player?”

  • Debs

    gooner get ya, I think that’s just pure speculation at the moment. Hopefully by the time the Kaka mist subsides, Arshavin’d already be an Arsenal player!

  • gunner32

    < ![CDATA[http://www.goal.com/en/news/1712/arsenal/2009/01/19/1067775/comment-why-arsenal-will-prove-the-critics-wrong

    Comment: Why Arsenal Will Prove The Critics Wrong
    Much criticism has been levelled at Arsene Wenger’s young side this season. Owen Watson argues that a great deal of this has been unfair and backs the Frenchman’s team to come good by the end of the campaign…

    here has been a great deal said and written about Arsene Wenger’s footballing philosophy and the way he approaches the game, on and off the pitch. Admirably, the Frenchman prefers to nurture young talent through the club’s youth system rather than spending lavishly on players that are deemed ‘the finished article’.

    Financial Situation

    Many have sniped at Wenger for his inability to ‘splash the cash’ but, in truth, the canny 59 year-old should be lauded for his frugal approach to the club’s finances.

    There are signs that the Russian Revolution at Chelsea has started to come undone. Roman Abramovich has always maintained that he wants a return on his investment in the West London outfit and, should he elected to leave, Chelsea would find themselves in all kinds of problems. They have a team full of ageing stars and, although they have a couple of decent youth prospects, they are nowhere near the calibre of Arsenal’s starlets. Even if nightmare scenario does not come to fruition at Stamford Bridge, can it really be said that Chelsea will be challenging for the Premier League title in three to five years time with their current squad?

    There are mixed opinion as to whether building the Emirates Stadium has provided financial constraints on Wenger in the transfer market. I find this hard to believe; when budgeting for this scenario the board will have included money for transfers and Wenger has removed many of the high-earners from the wage bill.

    True, Emmanuel Adebayor was appeased with a contract his current form doesn’t justify but Gilberto, Alexander Hleb and Mathieu Flamini have all left the club. In terms of transfers, Wenger’s net spending has been around £5 million as the money from selling Hleb was used to finance the Samir Nasri deal.

    The result of this is that Arsenal can comfortably afford to push through a deal for a certain Russian playmaker later this week, and possibly even push the boat out on an unknown entity to anchor the midfield. This would be uncharacteristic of the tight-fisted Wenger, but the fresh influence of Ivan Gazidis may see Arsenal being a touch less cautious.

    The advantage of buying now not only improves the chances of salvaging the season, it increases the optimism on the terraces and, most significantly, it gives the new players half a season to bed in. This means that when the next campaign starts the new acquisitions won’t have to get up to speed – a flying start in the new season is worth paying a slight premium for now.

    Wenger clearly understands the situation and may feel under no pressure to make hurried purchases. Liverpool spent £20m on Robbie Keane, who has generally disappointed, and, in the past, Manchester United seemed to be able to spend £15m on substitutes and £30m on first-teamers .This outrageous spending can’t last forever - and whatever happened to Kleberson?.

    At a time where politicians are maligning bankers and telling the public that we have taken out too many loans, the idea that the ‘spend, spend, spend’ binge of the top Premier League clubs won’t come back to bite them is naïve, and economics graduate Wenger knows this very well.

    People Problems

    There is undeniably an issue with the depth of the Arsenal first team squad. Wenger has alluded to the conundrum he faces in that if he has too much experience then it means his younger players don’t get the game time they need to develop – Cesc Fabregas is a prime example of this and Theo Walcott isn’t a bad one either.

    Wenger had the opportunity to poach Xabi Alonso from rivals Liverpool in the summer but decided against it. Now Liverpool are top of the league while Arsenal are largely struggling due to their lack of midfield cover.

    To add insult to injury, Liverpool have struggled to muster any kind of creative force when Alonso doesn’t play. It is notable that Liverpool have performed woefully against Stoke recently without the Spaniard, and they didn’t look anywhere near as dangerous against Preston North End when Alonso failed to emerge for the second half.

    Completing the deal would have provided the perfect opportunity to critically weaken a rival whilst addressing the need for a deep-lying counterpart to partner Fabregas.

    It’s not so much that Arsenal lack a defensive midfielder - Alex Song has done relatively well in the big games against ‘top four’ opposition and Arsenal have collected an impressive amount of points from their 'title rivals' - rather, when playing against the lesser sides his presence isn’t required.

    Denilson has shown promise this season but still should be considered deputy to Fabregas rather than a midfield partner, though at full strength the team could carry him to ensure his development.

    Personnel is an issue, but not as great a problem that is often made out. Nasri has shown he is able to deputise in the centre and, if Wenger can sign a creative player to play on the flank, or possibly go with the emerging Carlos Vela on the left, then Arsenal could still land in reasonable distance of the top – if not realistically challenging.

    Walcott and Eduardo will come back into contention very soon; this should provide the side with additional attacking verve. A rampaging Russian or a central midfielder would be a welcome addition, but they are not essential to the cause.

    Style of play

    And all this before we really get onto the pitch! It seems a lot of commentators don’t really watch Arsenal as the criticism has consistently taken the form, ’they play nice football, but they aren’t strong enough’. However, if you have actually watched Arsenal consistently this season, you will see that they really have not produced the kind of dynamic and attacking football that they played last season.

    They have at times strung together some stunning moves but watching the highlights masks over the real problem and that is the team have too often looked short of ideas.

    Although this is concerning it is to be expected; young footballers are generally more inconsistent than seasoned professionals. The key for this Arsenal side in determining how many future honours they claim is the extent to which they can learn from their mistakes and resolve them.

    There are signs that this is happening and the mainstream media have failed to pick up on it. For instance, when Liverpool or Aston Villa don’t perform particularly well but manage to pick up the victory, it is a quality to be admired - they ‘ground out the result’ and, especially in the case of Liverpool, ‘this is evidence they will make a title challenge’.

    When Arsenal don’t play very well but beat Bolton 1-0 at home, a fixture they have traditionally had many problems in winning, it is a sign of even more concern! If you look to the early part of the season that is the type of game the Gunners would not have take three points away from. This is something that should be seriously noted by those that love to criticise Arsenal.

    In the End

    When they are at their best Arsenal can dominate teams and tear them apart - even with their second string - and now the side is finally starting to learn how to win in trying circumstances. With possible January reinforcements allied to Eduardo and Walcott coming back into the side, Arsenal should be flying at the business end of the season.

    Too many people wrote Arsenal off at the start of last season following Henry’s departure and too many people are writing Arsenal off now. It remains to be seen if Arsenal are too far off the pace to challenge for the league title - they probably are - but talk of Aston Villa finishing fourth is premature. At the time of writing Arsenal are six points off the leaders; I would back them to be closer than that by the time the campaign comes to a close.

    Owen Watson, Goal.com]]>

  • Pete

    < ![CDATA[Personally, I'm hoping City hijack Sp*rs bid for Palacios, that would be funny :D

    You got to feel for Rosicky though, the guys been out longer than Eduardo! Hope he gets better soon. Its kind of similar to Kieron Dyers' situation, he been out for 17 months, but he's starting to come back now. Long-term injuries are a nightmare.

    Hope we have Arshavin by the time we play Everton. They played very well against Liverpool last night and wont be easy to beat.]]>

  • gunner32

    < ![CDATA[I was delighted to hear the news that Kaka was staying with Milan not out of spite for Man City but because it shows that there is still some loyalty in the game. Even in the face of hundreds of millions being waved in his face, Kaka has said "no, my heart belongs here and this is where I want to play and achieve things." As an Arsenal fan you have to be able to appreciate that. There are always going to be people with wads of cash sniffing around our players and it warms the heart to know that not everything in this life can be bought and that history, past achievements, current set-up and the future possibilities still weigh heavily on players' minds when it comes to change contracts. I believe that if a player is mercenary enough to take Man City's money and run, they would be equally mercenary to pack up and run if they decide that life at City doesn't suit them. I think we are seeing this with Robinho and unfortunately, I don't see this situation sorting itself out easily.

    I believe that Man City's problems are only beginning. To be honest, I don't think that Mark Hughes is enough of an attraction as a manager to sign big players. If you had asked Robinho if he would have signed for Mark Hughes without getting the big wads of cash - he would have said no. The club also need to show ambition not just be able to wave wads of cash around to attract players. It's for that reason, I don't think that the Sheik will be able to solve all of City's problems.]]>

  • Marriich

    < ![CDATA[Being below the radar suits us right down to the ground at the moment. Nobody is looking at our results in any competition unless we screw up so if we just carry on like we are, being consistent and winning games ugly 1-0 here and there who knows what may happen when we do click. The only problem at the minute is Villa. They got a very lucky win at Sunderland and like ourselves are winning games but not playing great. When they drop points between now and May, we must be in a position to capitalise.

    This transfer window has been relatively quiet on the actual signings front. We’ve only got two weeks left but the truth is there isn’t a lot out there at this time of year. The Kaka saga is absolutely ludicrous. £500K PER WEEK isn’t justifiable in any line of work, let alone football. I know Milan - who are not short of a few bob themselves would take the money, as would anybody from a business point of view, but could you really see Kaka playing for City if they didn’t qualify for Europe next season - or even in the Championship should City go down? I don’t think so.

    Aside from that, the Arshavin ‘will he? Won’t he?’ saga is starting to get on my nerves. All it takes is a simple yes or no, but with the Russians and money, it’s never that easy or that simple. But, is he really the player we need? Will he adapt straightaway? Because let’s face it, how many players from that part of the world have established themselves in the Premiership.

    Now, don’t get me wrong, he’s a good player but you had Rebrov, Shevchenko, Smertin, and you’ve got Pavlyuchenko down the road, all great players on the continent but can’t / couldn’t make it in England. It took Henry ten games to score his first goal and two months before Bergkamp settled in this country. If I was after someone at this time of year, I would mainly look at the Premiership and maybe France. I’d be looking at players like Bullard, Hangeland, Mark Noble, Micah Richards, Distin, Arteta. You can offer most of them Champions League football and a realistic challenge for honours, they are all experienced in some way and they wouldn’t cost the earth. We would definitely reap the rewards in both the long and short term.

    All I am saying is that the £12million plus that Zenit are demanding for Arshavin is a massive gamble and a lot of Wenger’s big money transfer gambles haven’t paid off. Remember Reyes, Jeffers and Richard Wright? The players I’ve mentioned know what’s needed in the Premier League when it’s not going your way and the experience of playing for a big club can only benefit them even more. With the players we have to come back from injury, with the right type of signings we would have a squad good enough to go on and really do something.

    Use the money wisely boss as I don’t think us fans can face being left with egg on our faces come May.]]>

  • Fabrez

    < ![CDATA[That Kaka deal falling thru is good and bad in that...it would have been great to have him in the Prem but as gunner32 said, there is still loyalty in the game & that's the positive. And believe me...there is very very very little loyalty left in the game. I'm thinking Cesc would have turned down an offer from Man City as well because i don't think he's a money guy either...granted i kno he wants to go back to Spain 1 day...which is more an emotional thing...understandable. I think he will leave like Henry did. And Ade would have been long gone had money been shoved in his face...granted i wouldn't mind £30-£40 for him given his current form!

    Robinho was obviously promised the Kaka signing...and that is exactly what this bust up is about i think...he'll get over it and probably move to Chelsea in the summer...who knows... And my fingers are crossed about Arshavin 2day...at least City are still shook up about their messed up deal and thinking about de Jong. Hopefully we won't be knocked off that deal by them.

    Just a thought...i'd like Valencia if we couldn't get Arshavin... i rate him a lot...lots of potential. And i just heard we may be considering selling Bendtner for £5...hmmm!]]>

  • Debs

    Fabrez I’m sure you mean £30-£40M for Ade not £30-£40 and £5M for Bendtner, not £5 lol :D

  • Fabrez

    LOL! I was reading ur comment n i was like…”what is debs trying to tell me?!?!” But then i noticed the all important “M” missing! lol My bad! Granted the £5 was close enuff for Bendtner! lol :D

  • Fabrez

    And Sky Sports said we only wanna offer £12M for Arshavin… and now the deal is only 50-50 to go thru. I’m very very worried!

  • jeffvip

    Someone is on the plane to Russia, we will have Arshavin in 48 hours… This is so exciting, by that time we will have enough depth like Man Utd or Chelsea to compete for the title…

  • Debs

    < ![CDATA[lol Fabrez! :) It's looking like we're trying everything to stop this Arshavin deal and that doesn't make sense! We need to realise that we've got to move in quickly before City stick their heads in and ruin it all. But then, maybe that's what Wenger wants, cos he's changed his mind about replacing Rosicky?

    But yeah, I hope you're right, jeffvip!]]>

  • Gooner Get Ya

    < ![CDATA[Marriich - "I’d be looking at players like Bullard, Hangeland, Mark Noble, Micah Richards, Distin, Arteta"

    The only person with the "special ability" that Wenger is looking for would be Arteta but he is never going to leave in the Jan window with Everton only 1 place behind us.]]>

  • Marriich

    < ![CDATA[Has any team been crowned yet? Why all the negative vibes and the early crowining of United as Champions?

    I thought there are still 16 or 17 matches to go depending on your team. In 17 matches anything can happen, injuries, suspensions, loss of form, coaching issues etc so why the sudden gloommy picture. For the first time this season i see us as potential winners because of the potential signing of Arshavin.

    That guy is a phenomenal player and his pace, skills and strenght will cause teams problems. Chelsea is a team never to be written off because i dont believe their players can be bad overnight and moreover they are just 2 points behind Liverpool with 16 games to go for me there’s no reason to panic. One draw and a win and they’re level.

    Liverpool have a great team and if Rafa continue what he did btw May and December and not get involved publicly with Fergie who says they cannot win. They have the players to do it so why not? For me if its not broken, dont fix it, he was doing something right early in the season and suddenly decides to put his team on public domain, all, of a sudden its pressure. United can withstand pressure because we dont need to win the EPL this yr, Liverpool fans demand it so its better for Rafa to just quietly do his job and get results instead of courting controversy that puts you on the spot light . United well, full of class and no one will discount them.]]>

  • http://kierandelaney.net/blog kierandelaney.net/blog

    < ![CDATA[Marrilch agree with you but both Chelsea and Liverpool and dropping slightly whilst Man U are the form team. Obviously there is a long way to go, but on current performance United deserve it.

    As for Arshavin, I don't really see him as a saviour that will win us the league. If the rest of the squad step up and players like Diaby and Denilson show good form consistently rather than in flurries then we could definitely win it, especially with the added flair and penetration he would undoubtedly bring.

    But on current form it's unlikely. I still think our squad is a bit light and we could do with one or two extra bodies. But not like Silvestre!]]>

  • Berth

    < ![CDATA[More injury woes for Man united. I hope the season is not becoming an injury contest season . May be, just maybe the league and cup is becoming more physical than it should be.

    Or are we seeing a new face in the premier league. All the same its still a good news for us(nani, evra, Nevile,rafel,rooney,ferdinand and a whole lot).]]>

  • Al

    Like the sound of arshavin but i would rather we spend the money on some one else like a centre mid a few years younger that could partner cesc.. Arshavin cant play in the champs leauge and the leauge looks like it will be hard to win even with arshavin but u never know. Itl take time for him to adapt and dnt think hel make that much of a differnce this year. N by next season will have eduardo rosicky walcott fabregas back as well as nasri van persie n vela, thats a good attacking team. If we had got him in the summer i woulda been happy as we could have used him in thr champs leauge n would have surely b higher up in the leauge. We’re not one for spending money so i think the money would b better spent else where. Where our problems r in CM. Song aint good enough for arsenal diaby ok but gives the ball away to much and not defence minded enough, denilson n ramsey will b great for us one day but not ready to make that DM place there own. So i would rather we spend big on a quality DM.

  • Debs

    < ![CDATA[Good news you know, Berth! lol
    I wouldn't call it good news cos that sounds a bit harsh- I'd rather call it a setback for them to our possible advantage. lol. Whether it benefits us, only time will tell!]]>

  • zohaib

    < ![CDATA[Neville ? What happened to him ? I thought he was okay. It was Evans that got injured. But Fergie said he'll be back in a week. And Anderson got injured as well. Apparently he's getting an X-ray done.
    So as I see it ManUtd's injury list goes something like this :

    Evans, Ferdinand, Evra, Rafael, Nani, Hargreaves, Anderson, Rooney.

    That's plenty of players out, but its shocking how many players they have for backup. Just look at how many quality players they still have :

    VanderSar, Foster, Neville, Vidic, OShea, the other DaSilva, (the other Serb defender they got), Carrick, Gibson, Scholes, Giggs, Ronaldo, Nani, Tosic, Park, Tevez, Berbatov, Wellbeck.

    I think I've missed a few. There's one youngster called Possebon. I think he's injured too. Then they have Manucho and Campbell, both strikers, both out on loan.

    I think it's fair to say that they're lightyears ahead of us.]]>

  • zohaib

    But hopefully having as few as they have out will give them some trouble, and us some advantage, and chances to bridge the gap in points.

  • Berth

    HOPEFULLY ZOHAIB.

  • Ric

    < ![CDATA[Just a quick question about Mate Toth.

    I've been hoping for a quality centre back for some time now. So just wondering if anyone knows anything about this Toth guy. Does anyone know what he's like?.. Fast, tall, strong, etc.. just in hope of finding our very own Vidic.

    Any information about him would be greatly appreciated.

    Cheers]]>

  • Fabrez

    Yup yup…definite chance to close the gap as much as we can. United are only beginning to feel the pressure we feel when without so many of our major players. On a very positive note, Eduardo is back 2nite for the reserves against some physical opposition as well…don’t think we get to see it live on ATVO but hopefully it will be a good outing for Eduardo…he needs to be our 1st “signing” of the window if all else fails! :D

  • Gooner Get Ya

    When is this Arshavin deal going to be done…I just want the torture to be over!!!! Every day i wake up excited like a kid on christmas day expecting some news on Sky Sports News and every day I am disappointed…how can we take sooooooo long to sort out one player when other teams have bought 2-3 players already. aaaaaaaaaaarrrrrrrrrrhhhh :-(

  • Berth

    Because we are Arsenal and we always do it the Arsenal way.(Gooner get ya)

  • Fabrez

    The Arsenal way will cost Arsenal if we don’t stop this long & drawn out process…jeez!!!! I think the question is…will Arsenal go above £12M? I’m not sure…but we are playing the waiting game we like to play. And don’t kno much about Toth…i think he has some decent height about him and he is a U-19 player for Hungary…so he’s gotta have some talent.

  • Ric

    < ![CDATA[Hopefully, because injuries to our defence would put us in trouble.

    On the Arshavin transfer, to be perfectly honest if we were going to spend 14-15 million on a player, I think Palacios would of been a great buy for us. Seems that ship has sailed now but I've been wanting Arsenal to buy him for ages now. Really like him. Suppose im gonna have to change my opinions on him now though.]]>

  • Debs

    Fabrez, the reserves match is on ATVO- go to the ‘Live’ tab…

  • Debs

    Fabrez, the reserves match is on live on ATVO- go to the ‘Live’ tab…