Counting The Days Until…

Afternoon mes amigos… It’s a pleasant afternoon in London, the sun is shining and the birds are signing but for the first time in a while, there is no football and the tennis is over. Time to write a blog!

In the recent weeks, I’ve been having quite a lot of heated discussions about players in the World Cup and the players whom didn’t make it and the players that were chosen. In my opinion, for England, for example, I thought Joe Hart should have been given the nod in the friendlies and the group stages (5 internationals gives you a good level of experience) and of course thought Gary Cahill and Scott Parker would be essential players to steady our ship. Theo Walcott was a no brainer for me. He’s been in the wars with injuries, but his appearances for Arsenal have always been fruitful – when he has an off day, he still takes defenders away and still contributes to the game. When he has a good day, he can do a lot. His appearances against Barcelona were testimony to that!

And it’s not only me who thinks that – Lionel Messi took time out to speak about Theo…

“I must say that at the time I thought it was a bad decision to leave Theo Walcott at home, and I think that has been proved right,” he said in the Star. “I can only speak from experience but he was one of the most dangerous players I have ever played against.”

“Barcelona players are not scared easily but I can tell you that when we played Arsenal last season he truly worried us,” he said.

“When we were playing Arsenal at the Emirates, we were so in control of the game at 2-0 – with all respect, Arsenal were not even in the game – then Theo came on and changed the game. He pretty much single-handedly salvaged a draw against Barcelona that night.

“Even in the return leg, our manager Pep Guardiola was telling us he was the player to watch out for, and the best players in the world like Xavi and Gerard Pique were telling us to watch out for him. The truth is that he really rattled him.

“If he could do that against Barcelona, think what he could have done against Germany and Algeria. Even if he didn’t start, he would still have been very important for England.

“Along with Cesc Fabregas and Sergio Aguero, he would have been the best impact player at the World Cup.”

It’s very interesting to hear these words from Messi as they always say – the best players always are the best people to comment on other players. And it’s quite an accolade to be talked about in this manner. Messi, as you can see above, talks about the high regard that not only him, but also his manager held Theo Walcott – and also mentioned the impact he could have had against Algeria and Germany – even as a sub. Personally, he is one of those players who can easily change a game, and looking back at it, it was absurd that he didn’t go. But in one way – with all the in-fighting that has apparently being happening in the camp, it’s a good thing that he didn’t go.

Talking about quotes from Barcelona players, another player who has been in the news is that slightly more improved ex-Manc, Pique, who despite his comments, has proved that he has really come on leaps and bounds as a defender. But he’s been in the press (again) and been tapping up Cesc Fabregas more.

“I have known that Cesc wanted to join Barcelona for many years – but now it is more than about wanting to do it. Now it is something he feels he must do. The World Cup has not been a good thing for Arsenal. It has meant that he has been spending every day with myself, Xavi, Andres Iniesta and Victor Valdes – and he has made his feelings very clear to us. He is keeping his mind focused on Spain but his heart is in Barcelona. I think already in his heart he is wearing a Barcelona shirt next season.”

It’s really annoying that each one of the Barcelona players literally take turns to talk about Cesc in such a manner – but Pique does have a point – the association with so many Barcelona players cannot be a good thing. These players are pretty much brainwashed and they seem to be like clones within the media, reading a script of pro-Barcelona speak. It doesn’t matter how Spain do now, as the last four will all play until next Sunday, but I was secretly hoping that they didn’t do that well so we could have our Cesc back and out of the gang of Barcelona players. However, there is no point speculating and worrying – all we can do is hope that he is above all of this and comes back to Arsenal renewed with the passion and desire we’ve seen in recent years.

The question is how long we have until Cesc does leave – counting the days until… or do you think Arsene can persuade him never to leave…? Okay, let’s not go over this again as it’s been said and done for the moment… but at the present, we can look at the other players we have in the Walcott’s, Arshavin’s, Nasri’s and of course our new signing in Maroune Chamakh…

With the World Cup coming to an end (only four more games), the world of Arsenal will become much more active… we all expect the signing of (here goes) Koscielny (I did it without copy and pasting, yipee) and let’s hope that’s followed by more signings. The first game game is on the 17th July against Barnet and that’s about 12/13 days away now…

Speak to you all tomorrow…

  • parsi

    Another day and another barca idiot dreaming of ces. I Swear these lot goet mega boners about cesc. I blame a lot of this on the doorstep of the media. If you are a top pro and you say you want to go, but Wenger doesn’t want you to go, you will be shooting yourself in the foot.

    In stories like this one, you would be extremely wise to think nothing of what is written in the papers. Their job is to create XXX stories a day about football and if there aren’t enough true ones, then they make some up.

    In the media ‘Cesc might be interested in going to Barca’ doesn’t sell. Nor does ‘Barca might be interested at the right price, but that’s not the right price for Arsenal’.

    The standard in football journalism seems to be a bit like a bunch of 21 year old alpha males bragging about how many women they shagged. Anyone with any nous comes to realise that there may be a few telling the truth, but most are bragging because they can’t be seen to be either boring monogamists or losers who can’t pull women or are still repressed due to mummy’s diktat.

    If you wanted to work out the truth, you might need to do a daily analysis of stories for all journalists, log them and tot up each year what percentage turned out to be true.

    Sadly for most of us, we neither enjoy the time nor the inclination to do that. So we either continue to buy into the hype, or we use gut feel to make a call on it. Or, if we are sensible, we take no notice of anything other than the Arsenal FC website printing ‘Arsenal FC can confirm the purchase/sale of XXXX from/to YYYY’.

  • Arsefan101

    @ parsi:
    Very true – the amount of rumours / made up stories etc is huge in media, but then again – some of them do have some foundation! The Cesc stuff does have more smoke in it than we think and I doubt all those players would say something if it wasn’t true!! Or a little bit true!?! Right?

  • devday

    @ parsi:
    It is amazing, the number of stories about Cesc.
    I feel there is more to come about this, but we just don’t know much about it at all at the moment, which is so annoying. Cesc, I feel, will stay for one more season… although, whether or not he will be able to perform at the highest level with a possible summer departure at the back of his mind is another thing all together!

  • yemi

    I think we should let Cesc leave if his heart is no longer here (Sell cesc At the right price to barca, or sell him to the highest bidder if barca stil insist on 30M and let them worry abt his movement to barca). Lets get someone else. 

By the way, how is rambo doing ? Any news of his injury? hope he is well

  • Kodjo

    @ Yemi

    Good to hear from you…i had the long weekend to recover from Ghana’s *******loss to Uruguay…the least said about this matter the better. Crazy game of football

    Anyway…i also do not believe in keeping a player against his will, though in this case Arsenal should not do a deal unless Barca matches our asking price of 80 million full stop.

    The lack of playing time at the world cup could be viewed in 2 ways or even more….It gives Cesc a reality check on how things will pan out at Barca…he will not be starting games if he moves there

    also the lack of action albeit limited could drive down his price on the market…Barca will argue… see he is not even starting games…so he is not that good. Well we all know the answer to that. If Cesc isnt that good why all the drama in attempting to sign him???

    I hope Wenger does get an experienced centre back …we’ve been linked to Mertesacker….will be a good signing but i am not sure about his pace. Wenger has apparently had him watched on numerous occasions.

  • parsi

    It will be intresting to see what happens the minute spain either get knocked oout or at the end of the WC

  • vj

    its really been dull for arsenal fans so far this summer, not much really going on. The cesc saga continues i am still really unsure of whether he will stay or go, i was expecting koscielny to be announced still i dont mind that much we all know weve got him. As for GK Eduardo linked this morning but apparantly a deal for mark Shwarzer is in place. Joe cole rumours continue to fly around, i really hope he signs for us. He will be a good addition should cesc end up leaving. I will be happy with our aquad if we do make these signings, although we must get another CB and try to persuade campbell to stay. If cesc does come to the trainig camp after the world cup, then i can see him staying

  • CON-MAN

    I honestly wouldnt be too impressed with J Cole. I like him but apparantly at chelsea he wanted 100k + a week and in my mind its hard to justify that. I mean hes hardly a world beater is he?

    Also we have a plethora of wide players that have a higher ceiling than Cole (Walcott, arshavin-depending on if were 4-4-2, nasri, even diaby can play out wide, wilshere-time to start letting him play, and all the other countless youngsters we have)

    As for a GK really hope we get Hart. He has a higher ceiling than Schwarzer and more potential and agree with VJ if Cesc will go it will be between end of world cup and before we really get started with season (i.e. emirates cup)

  • yemi

    @ CON-MAN:
    I won’t really blame j cole, they pay outrageous amount where he’s coming from(chelski), maybe he wants his own share of the cake b4 its too late to get anythin @ Kodjo:
    i was almost in tears after penalty miss. i was so sure gyan would score and ghana would qualify since it was the last minute of extra time. as for the penalties, mensah and ad were too casual with their kicks

  • Kodjo

    @ Yemi

    Yes John Mensah and Adiyiah were too casual with their penalty kicks…then issues of sportman like conduct and morality comes into play…denying a goal scoring opportunity in this case on the goal line is not equal to a penalty kick award.

    As we all know the chances of converting is 50-50.

    FIFA has to do something about the rules

    But this is what differentiates football from other sports…..

  • CON-MAN

    lol @ KODJO what could FIFA/referee have done? Suarez was sent off, and a penalty was given. If Gyan had scored it wouldn’t of been a big deal. Sure Suarez did technically cheat, but in that situation I probably would of gambled as well. I mean either Suarez misses the ball, it goes in, Ghana most likely win with 60 seconds on clock left or he handballs it, saves a definite goal, accepts the red and gambles that the penalty taker misses

  • Kodjo

    @ CON-MAN

    I agree with you on all your points. My argument is this if players can deny a clear goal scoring opportunity by any means when the alternative of scoring is less certain…then invariably you will find players exploiting this loop hole. This puts teams at the receiving end at a disadvantage.

    FIFA could come up with clear laws in situations like this which puts teams at an equivalent position to that which was denied. E.g award a goal when it is certain that the ball will go into the net plus a yellow or red card.

    Other folks have suggested awarding 2 penalty kicks …however the chances of scoring from a penalty kick is still 50-50.

    Yes the rules were applied as they are and the referee could do nothing except apply it to the letter.

    But moving forward… there has to be a just way of resolving situations like this.

  • yemi

    for me, a goal line escapade like suarezs own should attract a red card and the goal should be automatically awarded while any other situation where it is not certainly a goal but is deliberate and occurs in the 18yrd box should attract a red and a penalty