…And they’re back!

Morning Gooners,

We’re back baby…. With a nil nil draw, but at least we’re back right! So a nil nil bore draw and believe me it was quite boring, how did this happen? I hate to be the kind of guy that quotes himself but let me quote myself from a couple of weeks ago:

Back to the Arsenal, 18 days before the season starts and there’s plenty to be sorted out. Are the players fit enough? With only one friendly left to play (in Cologne) , Wenger has indicated that Podolski and Giroud may not be fit enough to start the season and will been to be introduced gradually. Those of you that read my blog last week will know my thoughts on the actually practicalities of a Far East preseason tour.  Yes, we’ve raised our profile in the Far East and we’re now likely to receive favourable commercial offers from the region but we’ve also got a squad who aren’t ready to start the season as we require. Like I stated last week, we’re not the only ones on foreign shores, so are we all willing to sacrifice the good of the team in the short term for long term commercial gain?  Apparently so.

Saturday’s performance was rusty, slight heavy legged, and ultimately we resembled a team that were a week or two short of full fitness. Giroud and Podolski had only played 45 off mins in Cologne, so to point a finger at their performance is completely unfair. As I said in the quote above we effectively sacrificed 2 potential points for commercial reward in the Far East.

Looking at the positives from Saturday, well it was nice and sunny for a start; also the hype about Cazorla may just be true. He was brilliant. It’s only one game but he single handedly controlled parts of the game and his ball distribution was that of a Spanish matador. Once (not if) we get Poldi and Giroud up and running, Cazorla will be enjoying the slack defending the Premier League has to offer.

Away from the pitch the transfer market has hotted up, out go Van Pursey (and the child inside him) and Alex Song. I’m not wasting my energy on the former but I was quite sad to see Song leave. Stories from some talk about his slack attitude and a refusal to negotiate a new contract even though quotes from Song contradict this. Regardless, he got his ‘dream’ move to Barcelona. I’ve been slightly annoyed at many on twitter playing down the impact Song had on our last season, while he did have his wandering moments, his contribution at times was vital. Unfortunately like many in the recent past, Song turned his back on the Wenger project seeking pastures new, so likes the others he will be replaced.

Nuri Sahin’s signing is imminent but the saga is dragging on with a  Mourinho led Real Madrid reluctant to agree a buy clause at the end of the loan deal, why? Because Madrid know that Sahin is likely return to form at Arsenal under Wenger’s stewardship and a reduced sell on fee will mean losing out in the long term.

Other players have been linked too, with many people waiting on the new messiah, the saviour of all our footballing sins, a defensive midfielder. Do we need one? I believe we do need a dependable screen but why can’t three midfielders (let’s say Arteta, Sahin and Carzorla) do this effectively? Those three players, in a mature and disciplined manner, would retain protection and through holding their positions but also constantly moving the ball. My point is this need for a defensive midfielder is turning into a search for a universal panacea but it’s not that simple , the players need to be disciplined enough to understand they have a role in defending as a team and this defensive midfielder does not give them free reign to wander.

Our favourite fixture is up next, Stoke away with Liverpool away the week after. We need to be up and firing asap. The first game of the season will always be tricky and the expectations by fans will out weigh the readiness of the players fitness, so let’s think of it as a point gained than two lost!

Come on the Arsenal!

Have a good day all!

~ @Tottz82

  • German

    “Do we need one? I believe we do need a dependable screen but why can’t three midfielders (let’s say Arteta, Sahin and Carzorla) do this effectively?”

    YES we need one.

    Why do barca have busquets (and now song)?
    Why do Real have Diarra + other DMs?
    Why do Milan have Gattuso? etc etc

    Because when you play flowing football (like we do), you need to have someone to break it up!

  • CON-MAN

    Do we need one? I think so. We play such gung ho football that essentially I would 5 defensive players (4 defenders, 1 DM) and 5 attacking players.

    That said and completely unrelated, Dev can you (or someone) change the ‘comments’ font colour/size please? Its really tiny and I feel like a retard having to have the screen size on 150%

  • devday

    @ CON-MAN:
    Yes! Will do! It is very small…

  • Dreamz

    Why is it acceptable for us to draw at HOME on the first day of the season to a mid-table club?

  • Ms. K

    YES! And thanks for the gratuitous totty shot Tottz 😀

  • Andrew

    @ dreamz

    It is “acceptable” because every year Arsenal have quite significant turnover amongst their starting XI and preseason so ineffective in actually preparing the team to play at a high level.

    I find it frustrating as well because these 2 points dropped are just as valuable as 2 points gained at the end of the season. 38 games with a max possible of 114. Of course it is not just mathematics but the goal is to get the most possible. If we were ready to play from the off we’d not have dropped 2 points, imo.

  • kiki

    I hope we can get a defensive midfielder soon. I will miss Song, but I am confident that we can be a real threat this year as long as we do well in the early months in order to keep that momentum going.

    I don’t believe that any one player at Arsenal will do what RVP accomplished last year, but we have good options now with the new signings to meet and maybe even exceed what RVP did.

  • eckleman

    Are you fucking serious? Sahin might be joining Liverpool?
    Wenger has spent the past 2 weeks haggling over a £14 mil buy-on clause that he allegedly wanted reduced to £11 million? Despite Arsenal being £8 mil in profit without even touching its transfer facility yet? Could this manager and club be anymore of a joke if this is the case?? Aclub that cannot offer CL football is likely to beat Arsenal with our show-off claims of ’15 years in the CL’ to Sahin?
    I cannot fucking believe this is the case. Surely, surely, Sahin isn’t going there. Not after all the sell-offs of our best players, not after all the Wenger lies, not after all the cash the club rakes in from gormless punters. He will join Arsenal.

  • eckleman

    When the transfer window closes,and we have all done our mathmatics,we
    will find,that Arsenal have made a profit once again,all the Directors and
    Shareholders will say, “WELL DONE ARSENE”,in my opinion,unless he does
    something regarding a couple of new players in the next seven days i’m
    afraid i don’t rate us ,i think we are a weaker team than last season, and look
    at the silly points we dropped last season, and to poor teams.It’s alright
    Wenger saying,we’ve got Wilshere to come back,i have my doubts,i hope i’m wrong,So please Arsene, “PULL YOUR FINGER OUT ,7,DAYS TO GO”.

  • Bonathan

    I’d love to see us sign a CB. it’s just not on the cards as there are no rumours really of any coming, but i think it’d be a good idea. 4 good options are needed really.

    we have KOS and TV who are good. mertersacker still has question marks over him, but hopefully will be good, and JD just ain’t good enough i’m afraid. that’s 2 or 3 out of 4, not ideal.

    i was kinda hoping bartley would challenge JD for the 4th slot, but obviously wenger didn’t rate him enough. We have now also lost alex song who has been required to fill in now and then at CB, so we are weaker in terms of depth there than we were last season.

    as for Miquel, he desperately needs a years loan. i’ll worry if he doesn’t get one. i personally believe that the lack of a loan spell out is what has held fabianski back from being a decent keeper. i hope we don’t do the same with miquel. let them make there mistakes somewhere else, then we can stand back and see if they are good enough without heaping the pressure on them.

    so yeah. someone like sakho would be ideal. he can play RB as well, so he’d have 2 chances of getting a game. after all, jenkinson is another with question marks over him

  • Berth

    Had a dream we get Matias Suarez and Capoue. Just a dream folks