A Little Less Boring as Walcott Speaks…

Morning All…

Theo Walcott has re-invigorated my daily blog today and made this week potentially much less boring… He’s given us an insight to what the players feel and what they want from the manager. It always seems like the fans are the ones who want new signings and marquee signings. Yes, that is true, we want to have “big” players at the club (no, I don’t mean Fat Frank Lampard), and big players cost big money. Gone are the days where you can find a world class players playing in a lower league in another country and turn them into the next big thing. When Arsene joined, our contacts and scouting was ahead of the rest – but now, everyone, including Bolton, have similar scout networks.

Theo’s recent comments come from not just him, but from the players as a whole, and they want to play with better players. Yes, Theo is a bit rubbish himself, and Cesc and Nasri probably think, “God, come on Theo, just pass it back” or “Come on Theo, make a run past the defender”… but nevertheless, he has shown in spurts that he has something, and the sentiment speaks volumes…

“If we can build our squad and hopefully keep our best players, it will look good for us. We need to win something next season. It has been so long. The fans have waited so long and as players we don’t like seeing every year go without winning anything, especially a big club like Arsenal.”

It funny how the players always talk about Arsenal not winning, when they are the people under-performing. Cesc and Nasri feel the same as Theo, but how many misses did they combine to miss this season – how many fluffs did they fluff – yes, defensively they were let down, but there should be some collective responsibility on this.

Theo continued:

“It’s totally up to Arsene Wenger, he’s the manager and he knows what to do; he believes in the squad. He saw things that us players wouldn’t have seen after the Carling Cup final – he’ll know what to do. Maybe we do need some new signings, a mega signing that’s going to get the fans on board. I’ve heard rumours of Karim Benzema at Real Madrid. Someone like that would help you hold on to your best players, get the crowd on their feet as well. We have to win something next season, if we don’t then I think a lot of players will go I’m sure of that.

Firstly, it’s clear to see that the players want a big signing, and of course, signing Chamakh on a free or Benezma from Real Madrid are two different things. The interesting part of the comment is that Theo thinks “a lot of players will go” if we don’t win something… well, maybe he is one summer ahead of himself, maybe the exodus will start now? But it’s not exactly the right thing to do – it feels like a threat – but a threat we, as fans, can do nothing about.

“A big club like Arsenal, being in the top four, the Champions League and then finishing fourth is disappointing – we need to be winning things, the manager knows that. I think it’s going to be tough in the Premier League next season; Manchester City look very dangerous, Liverpool are looking bright too.  Obviously City winning the FA Cup, they are going to want more and more and they will feel confident after finishing third ahead of us so there is going to be a lot of teams challenging – it’s not going to be easy.”

Theo all but admitted that Man City have overtaken us and that’s also quite disappointing as a fan to hear. You really want to hear that “we’ll be back next season”, and a bit more fighting talk. The worst thing is, Theo is right – we are now the fourth best team in the country and no matter what we think – unless Arsene acts positively in the transfer market, we will be fighting for the same position next season. News that Liverpool are about to sign Jordan Henderson from Sunderland for £20m as well as the additional signings they are linked with – they will be a force next season. And if we don’t strengthen, then we will not be able to compete.

Perhaps a change of formation to accommodate Theo up front is called for?

“I would prefer to be playing up front – I was signed as a striker. Sometimes when you’re playing out wide, it’s difficult to get in the game. I think manager wanted to develop me on the right and I think I’ve shown what I can do this season – hopefully he trusts me and I can play up front next season. I’ll have a chat with him when I come back and see what he’s thinking. I believe I can give something different to the team we haven’t had for a while so why not?”

And it’s actually something that the majority of fans I’ve spoken too are keen to see in action. Theo up front, with Van Persie just behind him. I suppose it hangs on whether Cesc is with us next season and if he’s not, it will be much easier to change formation. Hopefully he will be, and we’ll revert to the previously sucessful 4-4-2… but only Arsene can tell us what’s going to happen!

And just to top it off, despite the ranting and raving… Theo admits that it IS actually the players fault that we finished fourth…

“Our team has some great individual players but maybe as a unit we’re just not doing it. It’s totally up to the manager who is going to come and who is going to go.  Everyone always say about the defence [being the problem] but it’s not just the defence at times it’s the whole team; the way we defend.”

Let’s hope that the manager gets on with sorting this out…

It is our biggest summer ever under Arsene Wenger – isn’t it Theo?

  • steve68

    I dont think anything will change with this french goon in charge.

  • kronke

    fans have the right criticise wenger (since when did arsenal become north korea?) those who believe in wenger and blame those around him are arsene fc fans not arsenal fc fans. im an arsenal fc fan. i look at wengers performance and simply believe its no where near good enough. no winning mentality, faith in poor players, poor judgement in defenders, no intensity in must win matches, cant organise a defence – to proud to ask for help of those who can organise a defence (keown, dixon, winterburn), results have been poor for 6 years, doesnt hold players accountable and offers excuses ranging from the pitch to the ref, our captian in best player has no faith in him so why should anyone else? the thing i hate most about wenger is he is a manager/exectutive who spends more time crunching the number than he would studying the performances of denilson, diaby, almunia, squilacci, bendtner. why is our manager constantly commenting on the financial side of the club? we need a full time manager. a football man. wenger needs to make up his mind. get on the pitch in your tracksuit, or stay in the boardroom with your calculator. mind you he wouldneed a calculator to count the amount of misplaced denilson passes, lost headers by LK and how many times diaby pulls out of tackles.

  • patrick

    I give up with arsenal sometimes, it seems as though every season we seem to loose first team players and good ones at that and all we bring in is inadequate cack to add to the other inadequate cacks that we have in the squad that no other teams want to buy meaning the following season they will be first team players. This needs to be sorted out, KEEP the good players get rid of the CACK and bring in quality players to fill the gaps THUS making our squad stronger and not weaker. Then the top first team players will not have the urge to leave so much (apart from CESC)who wants to leave for other reasons aswell. We know Cesc wants out, Looks like Nasri wants to follow Clichy waiting to see if any offers come in before he signs and the two latter only have one year left on their contracts. How comes all the other Cack that we have seem to be tied in contracts while the better players ones seem to be running out. PLEASE SOMEONE come in to buy Bentner, Arsharvin, Rosisky, Eboue, Song, Squillachy, Almunia, Djorou , kosielny, PLEASE PLEASE take them away so that wenger will have to buy more than one player. Please Special Offer they come in a bundle all together for one price. 20 mill

  • devday

    Young defender Carl Jenkinson joins Arsenal

    Jenkinson joins Arsenal having featured nine times for Charlton Athletic’s first team. Predominantly a right-back, the 6’1” youngster can also play in the centre of defence. Although born in England, Jenkinson qualifies to represent both England and Finland through his mother. The defender has already represented both countries at youth level, and last season captained Finland Under-19s.

  • devday

    Benik Afobe, Chuks Aneke and Oguzhan Ozyakup have also signed new contracts

  • yemi

    @ patrick:
    That is a bit rash, for Bentner, Rosisky, Eboue, Song, Squillachy, Almunia i agree
    But Sell song ? KOS? Djorou ? Arshavin ? No way.
    Kos and djourou can play the FA and carling Cup, Kos can be a backup to sagna and Song.
    Get in
    A striker, a winger, a CB and a goal keeper. All established, competent and experienced. That will mean something.
    But do i see wenger buying 4 players ? That is another topic entirely. He should. That is the only way we can challenge for anything.
    What do you think the message will be if wenger brings in Given, Hangeland or Cahill or Samba or Sakho, Benzema or Lukaku plus hazard ?

  • patrick

    Im sure our rivals will be quaking in their boots with those signings. I guess that leaves us open to one more signing then we are closed for business lads

  • yemi

    @ devday:
    The signing of defender Carl Jenkinson is no good news as far as i am concerned for now and it is nothing to jump up for joy about. That is not what we need. I want to hear the signing of an experienced CB, an experienced CF, an experienced GK and probably a winger. Enough of teenage signings for now. It is not getting us anywhere. Infact it has not gotten us anywhere in last six yrs. Yes you need to mix youth with experience but …. Not a team consisting of a bunch of kids, want away players, disinterested and disgruntled players. Bring in matured fresh blood. Not the Silvestre or Sol or Lehman or squillaci types though.

  • kronke

    Why is wenger signing toddlers when its obvious we bloody need some steel at the back, that is why i am even more convinced that the idiot has lost the plot

  • yemi

    hxxp://uk.eurosport.yahoo.com/08062011/58/premier-league-sunderland-confirm-henderson-deal.html

    So liverpool have confirmed the henderson deal

  • yemi

    Full text at hxxp://uk.eurosport.yahoo.com/football/early-doors/article/335161/

    After the dark final days of the Rafa Benitez reign, and most notably the acquisition of Milan Jovanovic, it is refreshing to see Liverpool take a lead in the transfer market once again, with the club having agreed a deal worth £20 million for Sunderland’s Jordan Henderson.

    He will not be the last. Stewart Downing and Charlie Adam could follow in what is already a packed midfield, while Blackburn’s Phil Jones, Newcastle left-back Jose Enrique and Ipswich Town’s boy wonder Connor Wickham are also on the wanted list ahead of what is expected to be a busy summer for the accountants at Anfield.

    It is quite the statement of intent from manager Kenny Dalglish, director of football strategy Damien Comolli and owner John Henry, and a palpable improvement on the muddled policies overseen by Benitez and Roy Hodgson as they were forced to work under the oppressive economic conditions created by the hated Tom Hicks and George Gillett – just witness the curious case of Alberto Aquilani

  • kronke

    Seriously, what the feck is happening with the game in this country? Assuming the Henderson deal goes through, Liverpool will have paid 50m for two decent’ish English players who have little experience, let alone actually won anything!
    20m for Henderson is crazy…………I’ve seen him play a few times and he looks to be a typical ‘midfield general’, not particularly talented, not quick, not offering too much at all?? Guess it shows these managers do know a lot more!! Absolutely crazy money.
    _________________
    Wenger supplies the mental, who provides the strength??

  • arseneknows

    I don’t think we should throw our arms in the air about the signing of Jenkins – these are early days and we have to be a bit patient so see exactly what’s what – if there are the sort of signings we want to see at the club then buying young players like Jenkins is exactly what we should be doing. If you hadn’t noticed this is part of the clubs business model – how else are we going to compete with the bigger spenders if we don’t keep investing in and selling on young talent! it’s a business…

    that said, in addition, we must must have the right signings (those well discussed types!)

    peace and patients my friends

  • yemi

    @ arseneknows:
    Well said, but when last have we be able to sell any of these young players for good money ?
    The players that have brought us significant moni have been the matured ones. Toure, adebayo , henry and those that didn’t go on a free !!!

    I wanted to give you a knock *Joking* but i restrained myself when i saw the latter part of your comment quoted below

    “that said, in addition, we must must have the right signings (those well discussed types!)”

  • devday

    @ kronke:
    Totally agree – astonishing to see the £20m fee
    If he is worth £20m, then Cesc is worth £100m!

  • devday

    @ yemi:
    But we’ve already made 5 “signings”…
    Benik Afobe, Chuks Aneke and Oguzhan Ozyakup and then new signing Carl Jenkinson and of course Vermaelen “will be like a new signing”…

    We’ve lost out on Phil Jones, who has joined Man United today for £15m. Blackburn won’t sell Samba now either…

    Hmmmm, now what?

  • yemi

    then see you in europa league next season

  • yemi

    @ devday:
    then see you in europa league next season.

  • Berth

    Arsenal swoop on Jenkinson; else where Phil Jones undergoing medicals for Man u as they close in on Ashley. Guys this sounds too familiar; exactly the Arsenal story – In less than two years Wenger will be saying u know I almost signed Phil Jones and Ashley Young.

    I just hope the man has serious plans this summer and not sitting and staring as things pass us by.

  • Kodjo

    Maybe i am jumping the gun here….
    But is since Gazidis came in he hasnt been able to pull off any major signing..i am not blaming him entirely but i just wonder…..

    The money for Henderson is absolutely krazy…hasn’t won anything…not a an est international…albeit marked Cesc out in the games we played against Sunderland…was excellent in the game against Chelsea…since then i have not seen anything spectacular except that he seems to have a decent engine…pettered out after the 2nd half of the season.

  • kronke

    Brady’s come out and given his opinion – he thinks we’ll be busy in the market, and that Nasri will stay. This is after I’ve read somewhere that Wenger is “excreting bricks” after hearing that Man City might also be sniffing around Gervinho. This person says this, and that person say that – it’s all getting confusing! Personally, I’ve lost faith in our transfer muscle, but I think that nothing would speak more volumes than a little bit more decisiveness by our club – nipping uncertainty in the bud as soon as it arises, and TAKING ACTION. What was Gazidis doing when Nasri, one of our better players, ran his contract down to just one year?!! However we see his performances so far, he’s young, ostensibly talented and is one of Europe’s rising stars. Our priority should be to tie players like him down! Besides, it’s not like players can’t be worth more to their clubs than their performances – ask Zlatan Ibrahimovic. One of the most overrated players ever! Maybe he’s Bendtner’s role model… Anyway, I digress… The club has to be aware of the fans’ unrest following the dismal end to last season, as well as its dwindling reputation worldwide. Nothing less than decisive and palpable action, particularly in a remedial manner, will do at this point – especially with the new imposition of increased ticket prices. We, as fans, deserve more consideration and respect than what we’re being shown!

  • Kodjo

    Well the pressure is on…man utd have made their move…obviuosly preparing for the future given rio’s injury ravaged season.

    Oh at Yemi at this rate…the Europa league must be beckoning fast!!!

  • kronke

    You can see it already a nknown bloody french player from the lower leagues -

  • Kodjo

    For CB my preference will be go for scott dan/samba(unlikely now….though he may push for a transfer)

    winger …Gervinho is the obvious choice…alt will be Hazard

    Benzema shd be the marquee siging that shows serious intent.

    Having said that i do not think Wenger will sign more than 3 players possible 4 depending on the exits…

  • patrick

    NO to this over rated mercenary GERVINHO

  • kronke

    what a joke the english transfer market is?henderson for 20m,is the world going mad.while i admit i don’t know much about the player but hearing someone on the radio say this morning that henderson can’t tackle,aint a great passer of the ball and can’t score goals,well it makes aaron ramsey sound like a right bargain at 5m.ramsey can pass the ball,can tackle and more importantly as an eye for goal.i can understand clubs like liverpool, man cuty etc going a bit nuts in this summers transfer window,because next summer they have to go on what they earn,and lets be honest they have no chance signing big then.great to hear that some of our good young talent have signed new contracts frimpong,afobe,two outstanding future arsenal players in my opinion.great to hear my hero liam brady say that he expects wenger to be very busy this summer,i believe you,but no doubt the doom & gloom merchants won’t.but thats their problem.

  • yemi

    @ Kodjo:
    Like i said earlier, 4 plyers will be the minimum number showing that we actually mean biz. No matter how many stay or leave, a minimum of 4 is what we need.
    We need a GK (Given?)
    We need a CF (Benzema,Gervinho , lukaku ?)
    We need a CB (Hangeland,Mexes , Samba, Sakho, Gary Cahill ?)
    and we need a winger (Hazard ?).
    We can top it up by adding baines on the left side.
    I don’t think that is asking too much. although we don’t have backups for Song, sagna and clichy. I think KOS can fit into any of RB and DM.

    Players that i don’t want to see next season

    1. B52
    2. Denilson
    3. Rosisky (unless he is ok with being a 4th choice midfielder)
    4. Diaby (kodjo’s boy lol)
    5. Squillaci
    6. Alumina
    7. Traore

  • yemi

    By the way, Odemwingie has confirmed that there are interests from arsenal and chelsea

  • yemi

    Guys, i was just scrouging through the cyberspace to is if i would get any news to cheer me up. I cam across these two article on hxxp://bleacherreport.com. What do you think ???

    Arsenal Summer prospects (This was written in april)
    1. Mexes : A tenacious defender who boast a similar style to that of Arsenal’s Thomas Vermaelen : £8-12 million

    2. Neven Subotić : A tough, imposing centre half, Neven Subotic is touted as the next big defensive prospect :£14-20 million

    3. Stéphane Mbia : A versatile, powerful defender who can play as a central defender or a defensive midfielder.

    4. Leighton Baines : the most consistent and highly regarded left backs in the EPL. : £8-13 million

    5. Eden Hazard : A devastating attacker, Hazard is blessed with amazing speed and balance alongside great creativity and a ferocious shot. Boasting over 130 appearances for French giants Lille and 19 Belgium National caps, Hazard ticks every box. Did we mention he’s only 20? : £18-30 million

    6.Gervinho : The Ivorian is an incredibly quick and strong striker who is equally effective on the wing.: £8-15 million

    7. Michaël Ciani : The Frenchman is a strong, quick defender who has been a consistent performer in the French League for a number of seasons now. Currently with Bordeaux, the 26 year old is blessed with imposing strength and a giant header. Cost: £8-12 million

    8. Roger Johnson : A natural leader who completes a large amount of work each match alongside providing a reliable presence when both defending and attacking set pieces, the 27 year old would be well worth the £10-12 million

    9. Scott Parker : Cost: £10-14 million

    10. Hugo Rodallega: £10-15 million

    11. Charlie Adam : £10-15 million

    12. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain: £10-15 million

    13. Lacina Traore : A giant of a striker who has been more than prolific in the Romanian League with CFR Cluj, before recently transferring to Russian outfit Kuban Krasnodar. At 6ft8 the Ivorian is a immensely imposing figure who is almost unstoppable from set pieces and crosses. Traore also possesses admirable and impressive feet and technique alongside strong balance making him an all round striking dynamo. : Cost: £6-10 million

    14. Moussa Sissoko : The French defensive midfielder has been hailed as the next Patrick Vieira after a number of seasons as a consistent performer for Tolouse in the French League : Cost: £7-11 million

    15. James McCarthy : Cost: £9-13 million

    16. Per Mertesacker :P er Mertesacker would send relief through Arsenal fans if Wenger managed to sign the imposing centre half as the German could potentially single handedly eradicate the Gunner’s defensive faults such is Mertesacker’s calibre. At a huge 6ft6, the 26 year old is a strong, efficient defender who boast natural leadership and a smashing header. : Cost: £12-16 million

    17. Gary Cahill. : one of the strongest defenders in Premier League. : Cost: £11-16 million

    19. Jan Vertonghen : The 23-year-old is a strong, imposing defender with great height and a solid tackles. Capable of playing throughout the backline as well as a defensive and central midfielder, the Belgium international is destined for Arsenal thanks to his playmaking abilities and no nonsense defending. Cost: £9-13 million

    20. Phil Jagielka : Cost: £13-17 million

    21. Kévin Gameiro : The small yet efficient forward has secured a more-than-impressive 17 goals in 26 appearance for his French side, and many believe the 23-year-old will thrive in the Premier League (Ala chicarito ?). Cost: £11-17 million

    22. Mamadou Sakho : The most likely defensive signing for Arsenal and arguably one of the most needed. Mamadou Sakho has long been touted as an excellent option for Wenger and the Frenchman has tried to bring the 21 year old to the Emirates. : Cost: £10-14 million

    Arsenal Transfer Prospects: The 8 Best Replacements for Nicklas Bendtner
    8. Gervinho
    7. Jeremy Menez
    6. Hugo Rodallega
    5. Hulk
    4. Gonzalo Higuain
    3. Radamel Falcao
    2. Karim Benzema
    1. Eden Hazard

  • Kodjo

    @ Yemi

    I’d be surprised if Wenger let that # of players leave the club. And yes Diaby is my boy!!!! lol

    I cant defend him anymore…he just hasn’t been consistent inspite of the vast potential and talent.

    A Benzema signing will create the wow factor in the team…for sure.

    I’d take Scott Dann/Johnson/Samba for premiership exp and height. The latter might be involve din the natons cup which c’d be disruptive and needs planning around. Can’t afford to wait for a season for a new defender to get used to the league and system.

  • olutoni

    For all those expecting big money signings, experienced players blah, blah, blah.. I hope we will not all be disappointed. I have seen so many times on how transfer window has played out and we end back to square 1.

    Arsenal signs young players.
    Signs 1 or 2 unknown players @ a cheap and we all expect world class performances ..etc.

    If care is not taken Arsenal will be out of the top 4. The mentality has to change. The formation has to change. Ability to read/predict your opponents game play need to be emphasized.

    What the hell has happened to scouting your next opponent and exploiting their weakness like other teams do against us.

    I hope this is not so and we win the league come next season