Gervinho Speaks, Gazidis Speaks & Arsene Speaks

Arsene Wenger was in full voice today and he spoke a lot about a lot and Gazidis chipped in too with some early words this morning on Sky Sports News… Let’s start off with Arsene, who commented on the arrival of Gervinho…

“Gervinho is a player that can play in a number of positions up front.  He can play on the right, on the left and through the middle.  He has qualities that I find very important, like his movement off the ball.  He has the qualities we like technically.  He is good one against one, he is strong and was the best provider in the French league with assists and he scored 15 goals. I think he is a very good addition to the squad.”

When were linked with Gervinho (and more recently with Joel Campbell), a little debate kicked off to whether we’d abandon or 4-5-1, I mean 4-3-3 formation in favour of a more orthodox 4-4-2… but if pre-season is anything to go by and if the statement about Gervinho is coupled with it, then it looks like our formation will remain the same this season. If Bendtner does move to Everton on loan or Dortmund for £10m –  I would prefer the former if he could then come back and be a super striker… then this leaves the plethora of strikers as such – Chamakh, Van Persie, Vela, Gervinho and Joel Campbell (if he does sign)… so we would probably see Vela and Gervinho play on either side of Van Persie… but then again, where does that leave Arshavin, Nasri and Walcott…? There will be lots of time to think about formations later, so let’s not worry about them right now…

Gervinho, always wanted a move to Arsenal and this is his dream move – he spoke about signing for Arsenal and said:

“It’s a great feeling to be an Arsenal player. I’m very happy. I’ve always dreamed to play for this Club. I’ve achieved this dream now and I am so happy. It’s one of the most beautiful days of my life. I’m very happy to have the chance to work with Arsène Wenger.  I came here because I believe that he can improve my game and help me reach another level, but the most important thing for me is that I bring a lot to the team for whom I’m playing.”

I’m very excited to see Gervinho in action – he seems to have something about him, a trick or two and a bit of pace too.

At the end of last season, I personally had a few areas that needed to be addressed – I short-listed a few players whom I thought had underperformed and through myself and all the regular readers, we had come up with a list of all the people we thought let us down and / or weren’t good enough to wear the shirt and / or should leave or be replaced…

A little refresher of that list:

  • Almunia
  • Clichy
  • Squillaci
  • Eboue
  • Denilson
  • Diaby
  • Bendtner

And in one way or another, it seems like these issues are being resolved… as we all know, both Almunia and Bendtner are in talks with clubs – the former may be on his way to Athletico Madrid and the latter may be on his way to a German team or Everton… we’ve
also seen Clichy depart to join Man City and confirmed today that Denilson is returning to Sao Paulo (albeit on loan)…

On Denilson, he spoke about how much he will miss the team – perhaps a year on loan will change him as a player and he’ll come back a better one? Let’s hope so!

“I move away with sadness because I have so many friends at Arsenal and everyone has always been so supportive towards me. I want to say thank you to the Club, and of course, also a big thank you to all the Arsenal fans who are very special. I’m now focused on doing well in Brazil next season, but will always be looking out for the Arsenal results. It is a great Club with many great players, a good team spirit and a top-class manager. I wish you well for next season.”

Eboue has been marginalised by the arrival of Carl Jenkinson and has also been linked with a move away from the club – we’ll see what happens with that and that addresses a lot of the issues with the hit list…

Leaving only Squillaci and Diaby… For Squillaci, we have Kyle Bartley, who could replace him in the line up. Bartley was on loan at Rangers last season and did okay… he spoke on his position:

“I hope to know by the early part of this week what Arsene Wenger’s feelings are. I don’t want to be fifth or sixth choice at Arsenal. I’d rather be playing more regularly and Rangers would be perfect.”

In summary, the list is as follows:

  • Almunia – most likely to be sold, not replaced
  • Clichy – sold, not replaced, but Gibbs is now first choice
  • Squillaci – could be sold, Bartley / Miquel replacements and perhaps an additional centre backs
  • Eboue – marginalised by the arrival of Jenkinson, could be sold…
  • Denilson – on loan to Sao Paulo
  • Diaby – will never be sold, one of Arsene’s favourite player and will remain… surely he has to improve the season?
  • Bendtner – replaced by Gervinho…

I am also expectant of another centre back arrival, as I believe everyone is – with Denilson leaving the squad, I doubt he will be replaced, as we’ve got Ramsey, Diaby and Frimpong – but I do think we need another signing in central midfield – Song is excellent, but if he is injured, it leaves us a little light in the DM area…

Ivan Gazidis was on Sky Sports News this morning and he basically speaks on song, exactly what Arsene says, which is probably a good thing, but at a time when we’re looking for any little bit of transfer news, we’re not getting any new “juice” – he all but confirmed Arsene’s stance of keeping Cesc and Nasri for next season. The question that has been asked several times this transfer window – would you spend £20m + wages and sign Juan Mata for one year if you were Arsene? Hell no! So, why are we doing it with Nasri, which is effectively what we are doing…

We’ve still got a 6 weeks until the transfer window closes, so I’ll bite my tongue for now… onwards and upwards to Cologne now, for our next pre-season friendly…

  • afc4life

    Great article Dev! It is clear that Arsene / Arsenal have been addressing some of the main issues with the existing squad… I really do hope there is further transfer activity.

    Fingers crossed!

  • Endi

    A madman never knows he’s mad; he actually thinks everyone else is crazy. I won’t be suprised if Eboue, Bendtner and the remaining dross still retain their places in the team next year, since Arsene is still bent on proving that 1 + 1 makes 3…

  • Berth

    There are no clear indications of issue being addressed. One major summer signing and this continuous brainwashing of fans by Arsene and now Gazidi surely should leave any fan worried.

    Gazidi proved from his words that Wenger looks indispensable, far more influential and yields more power than the whole board combined together

    And Dev, Song is never a world class player; why would you also consider Diaby, Ramsey and Frimpong as replacement; you so sounded like you ve been on the buzz dis Monday afternoon.

  • afc4life

    @ Berth:
    The issues with poor performers are being addressed.
    Definitely – they are all leaving.

    They will be replaced or are in the middle of being replaced!

  • devday

    @ afc4life:
    Thanks buddy – yes, he is addressing issues, which is good to see – but there is more to do!

  • devday

    @ Endi:
    No way, Bendtner is definitely out – Arsene said the reason he was left behind from the Asia tour was because he was in talks with other clubs!

    As for Eboue, now that we have Jenkinson and Gervinho as RB and AMR, there is less scope for Eboue – he offers something different, but accept that he has been rubbish so far, so it is time for him to go!

  • devday

    @ Berth:
    I said Song has been excellent – not world class!
    But in reference to the article, I said that we are still short of a DM…

    “Song is excellent, but if he is injured, it leaves us a little light in the DM area…”

    Because I don’t think we can rely on Diaby, Ramsey and Frimpong in that position…!!

  • Berth

    Song, sighs!!!

  • Berth

    Wenger address issues!!! I know this guy

  • Bonathan

    Not jsut if song gets injured, it’s african nations time again this season. so that means we’ll be without song and frimpong. with denilson going out as well, we better hope there’s no more injuries at that time cos we’ll be down to the bare bones.

    I’m not sure if no news is good news for us at the moment. it means that no one is leaving, but, until nasri signs a new contract, that might not be a good thing. i hope we’re not in a situation where we are trying to buy replacements with days to go to the end of the transfer window.

    until nasri signs a new contract, the rumours are going to be there right until the end of the window, causing disruption to our early season. Of course, the fabregas rumours will continue till then as well. Will nasri sign a new contract?? well, since it doesn’t look like it dooes it! Would his mind be changed if we made big transfers, maybe, will we make such signings? probably not.

    one things for sure, bigger bids will come in as the window draws nearer. if nasri has not signed a new contract by the time the season kicks off, this is going to hang over us like a bad smell all season. I think that interested clubs know this and are just biding there time. We’ll have to make the decision to get rid pretty soon, if not, then it’l be keep him and hope to god we can change his mind with a big season. of course, if we don’t, then we’v just flushed a lot of money down the pan. it’s a predicament.

    fabregas also. Bit different because we hold more cards here with him tied to the contract, but it is worrying that he hasn’t come out to quash any rumours, so it is obviously still a possibility as far as he is concerned.

  • agentsmurf

    I am so upset, I open the papers and there a picture of Vieira kicking a football around with one of the Man City youth products outside the City of Manchester Stadium. I can’t help thinking he should be part of our backroom or club staff as he is from a now Mythical time and the thing is if he walks in a room he has such arua that players will almost sit up straight at the sight of him. Even if it’s passing on advice to youngsters it would have been invaluable but I am assuming it’s come down to money.

  • agentsmurf

    what i simply believe is sheer stupidity on wengers behalf is his refusal to pay players like nasri and cesc salaries of up to 120k a week yet he is happy to pay players like denilson and diaby more than double thier worth. you hear with wengers comments about all players being captains that he believes in a collective effort and eqaulity and sharing the burdon and distributing the wealth across the sqaud. whilst wenger distributes the wealth the burdon is not shared. players like nasri, van persie and cesc carry the team whilst players like denilson and diaby simply go for a ride as they are passengers yet wenger tries to treat the players as eqauls. its a flawed system. its communism/socialism. that failed miserably in the cold war and lead to the collapse of the soviet union. other clubs like united and chelsea pay thier players based on their contribution. work hard, play good – get a pay rise. play poor – no pay rise of even contract extension. this is capitalism. a system that rewards effort and talent and punishes mediocrity and laziness. wenger needs to start governing the sqaud in a capitalist way.

  • Steve

    Still think Kos would make a great DM

    We all agree that we need a new CB moving him to the DM role gives space and cover and allows the younger CB’s not to move down the pecking order.

  • yemi

    I think we will still get a CB, if /when song leaves for the African nations cup, i think KOS can fill in that slot perfectly. As for frimpong, i don’t think he is going to any nations cup just yet. Having said that, i think he is a good tackler, stopper and good DM but as for replacing song i think his passing/technical ability is below average.

    I seriously think arsene might consider moving TV to LB and get a new CB.

    On transfers (OUT), i don’t see diaby going anywhere (much as i would love that), i also hope squillaci leaves ASAP.
    It is a good thing that denilson is off to brazil on loan, maybe he can get a little bit of the brazilian flair and creativity back in his game.

    I alos hope djourou get back to the form that made all of us hail him earlier last season.

    as for formation, i think the formation and personnel should be based on the opponents. Having said that, i think our squad will be more suited to a 4-1-3-2/4-4-2 OR 4-3-3(not 4-5-1)

    first choices in CAPS

    ——-Sczezney/new GK

    SAGNA/carl–NEW CB/djorou–TV/kos–GIBBS/tv

    ——-Song/Frimpong/kos/new dm—————


    RVP/theo/nasri/new CF –GERVINHO/arshavin/nasri

    in that team i have
    1-new GK (unlikely)
    2-new CB (likely)
    3-new DM (very unlikely)
    4-new CF (necessary)

  • agentsmurf

    Apparently we are ‘almost’ there with Cahill.
    So that must mean we are a few weeks away then 😉

  • yemi

    @ agentsmurf:
    The new players should come in early enough for the preseason, blending is an important part of the team.

    Has anyone seen miyachi playing ?how good is he on a scale of 1-10

  • Berth

    On a scale of 10. Miyachi is like 5.5 over 10.

  • Robert Li

    why no one talks about the Hangzhou Greentown game, I traveled 400km to watch it, a middle stream Chinese team made a number of one on one changes and hit the post in the fist half… we were desperate to score again in second half but the attack is not sharp enough….