The Armchair Gooner

An Arsenal blog bringing you news, opinion and humour on a daily basis. Well, I'll try at the very least…

Last Chance Sagna And Flamini On Ozil.

BFFs have a cuddle.

Evening, folks.

Apologies for the lateness. I had originally planned today’s entry to be a new Goonersphere Podcast, but those pesky gremlins inherent to the programming of the matrix (…) have conspired to ruin our audio. All things going well, that’s a troublesome moment that will be rectified tomorrow.

So, instead, I figured it would be best to have a brief look at some news.  Since the beginning of the year my intent has been to ensure at least 1 post a day and that’s a record I intend on keeping intact.

Bacary Sagna’s contract still dominates a lot of discussions I come across. Continue reading

Arsenal Splash £100m, Sagna, Arsene And The Summer

They offered how much?

Howdy, peeps.

I hope this latest instalment of mine finds you well, nourished and enjoying life.  The weekend still lies on my memory. One thing I’ve often found as a Arsenal fan is that my general mood and enjoyment of daily activities is greatly diminished when the team lose. When they win, the opposite comes into play. Coupled with the joys of spring time, winning a NLD finds me the picture of ebullience today. I’m probably bloody irritating to be around, such is my chipper and spirited mood.

A lot of the talk in newsworld surrounds the summer. When all the hullabaloo dies down about the NLD – especially a certain Mickey Hazard’s hilarious comments accusing Sczsesny of attempting to start a riot by taking a picture on the field at White Hart Lane – things get back to a degree of normality. As the stories being blown out of rational proportion die out, they speculative ones emerge. Such is the nature of news, and Mickey Hazard, who, let’s be honest here, has always been a bit of a cry-baby. Continue reading

New Contracts For Everybody!! Well… Almost…

Signing your life away…

Morning, folks.

My absence yesterday was due to preparations for the latest Goonersphere Podcast, but luckily my little Scottish friend, Dyllan Munro, was on hand to fill in with with his unique brand of hilarity and unquenchable rage. Big thank you to Dyllan and be sure to keep an eye out as he will be guesting again for me in the future.

Right, without further ado; Arsenal stuff.

It seems there has been an explosion of news about contracts in recent weeks. Previously, much debate has raged between Arsenal fans surrounding the merits of Bacary Sagna and Arsene Wenger and their proposed extensions. Elsewhere, John Henry at Liverpool has opted to make public his bizarre admissions regarding the release clause that, according to his own words, did exist in Luis Suarez’s contract. Liverpool may have set an alarming precedence by choosing to completely ignore such a thing.

Any Suarez deal is a thing of the past and the chances of us purchasing him are long gone. Whilst not entirely legal as I understand, in an environment where players can force moves at their will there is a part of me that agrees with the stance taken by Liverpool; they didn’t wish to sell a vitally important player and simply chose not to do so. Continue reading

Arsenal Lose Battle to Sign Magnificent Startlet as Cat Explodes and Weather Worsens.

“I’m sorry, come again…”

Afternoon folks.

Apologies for the lateness of today’s entry. Many things have conspired together to prevent my usually punctual posts. To list the many reasons would be pointless. I could, but I’m not going to. Suffice to say I have my reasons, none of which are especially valid.

News today is a baffling bunch of balderdash and delight. Most of what you read is utter tripe. It’s the silly headlines that are designed to lure you in that get me. We all know what’s on the other side of that link is likely to be complete lies, yet we still click away regardless. I’m as guilty as anyone of this, only to find the link takes me to Caught Offside, meaning I have to very sharply exit that site and then head to the shower to wash away any particles of tripe I may have been infected with.

I purposely used one of those headlines for my title today, albeit an incredibly stupid variety of that which I lament. Why? Continue reading

Bacary Sagna’s New Contract.

Bacary can move the ball with the power of his mind.

Afternoon, folks.

I have a few moments spare today. Free time is often something of a rarity to such an extent that when some presents itself, I’m unsure what to do with it. Ordinarily, I might use these moments for something shockingly inappropriate or sleeping as I don’t do enough of that particular pursuit. Today, I thought I’d offer you up an extra special blog post. Well, a blog post.

Bacary Sagna will be a free agent in the summer as his contract is entering its final months. There is much debate and speculation around the sprawlingly diverse Goonerverse at present regarding wether or not giving him one is a good idea. I think it is, but I can also understand a few of the reasons some think it is not. Continue reading

Sagna out, Wenger in, Vermaelen gushy and the importance of bouncing back.

“What? I haven’t left anything on the carpet. Or in your shoes”

Evening folks.

I’d like my current relationship with Arsenal to the one I share with my cat. I love that silly cat. She’s adorable. Then she shits on the carpet and I want to bloody throttle her. Against Bayern and Blackburn, Arsenal well and truly shit on the carpet, and there’s going to be a great deal of purring and cuteness required in the coming weeks for the nagging desire to strangle that overwhelms me at present to subside.

With such focus on the manager, eyes have wandered slightly from the importance of our up coming fixtures. Before we make the frightening trip to Germany in search of an act of God, we face Villa, Everton and a trip to White Hart lane. Expecting anything from Bayern would be like me waiting patiently by my front door for Penelope Cruz to show up naked, but the league fixtures are as important as they come. 9 points from those 3 game won’t just put us back on track, it’ll make the shining trophy that comes with 4th place a distinct possibility.

I’ll be previewing the Villa game tomorrow.

Elsewhere in news, a few stories has caught my beady little eye. Firstly, captain not-quite-so-fantastic, Thomas Vermalen has predictably lent his support to Arsene in these trying times. With the guns from fans blazing, our manager – rightly or wrongly – has made it abundantly clear he won’t be stepping down from his position.

Arsene said, when asked if he had considered quitting:

“No. Not for one second.

“Of course we had no euphoria because we have gone through a disappointment on Tuesday night but apart from that we are responsible people who know what it is to fight.

“We live in a world of emotion, of excess, and it is down to people who have responsibilities to put that into perspective and keep solid and keep guiding the club in the right way.”

You can almost hear the plethora of keyboard warriors temporarily suspending excess masturbation for the day to flock to message boards with harsh words to say. I admire his stubbornness, his refusal to quit when the chips are down. But there is a part of me that thinks, for his own sake as much as anything, that the time to do exactly that may not be too far away. Nothing lasts forever, and even the greatest of things has to be replaced.

Lastly, Bacary Sagna has been warned that Arsenal will only sell him if they want to - he has no say so in the matter with a contract until 2014. Perhaps that’s stance we could have considered last summer when Manchester United came calling. I’ve long been a fan of Sagan, but in recent months his form has dropped drastically. Once you could rely on him to give you a consistently good performance, these days he’s huffing, puffing, and look utterly disinterested with it all. I personally wouldn’t have a problem moving him on in the summer, and he’s not quite the huge name departure the media are sure to make him out to be.

And that’s yer lot for today, you beautiful bastards. Thanks for reading, and, as always, head over to the comments and pour your little hearts out. I always like to hear from you.

I shall return tomorrow.

Theo, Sagna, Ramsey, Gervinho, January investment, and a woeful performance.

Southampton 1-1 Arsenal: Szczsney’s lunge proved futile. Thanks, defenders!

Afternoon folks.

Everything was plodding along nicely. Talk of ineptitude and crisis had taken a welcome hiatus, and 4 wins from 4 saw Arsenal rise up the table. The team had taken the shame of a loss to Bradford and used it to improve.

And then yesterday happens…

I’m not going to be super critical as we didn’t actually lose the game. The history books will recall an away draw, and away draws tend not to be catastrophic. However, given our recent burst of good form, I am hugely disappointed to see another performance so bereft of energy and ideas, especially given the regularity they have appeared this season. I had, perhaps rather foolishly, hoped all that was behind us.

The result itself isn’t the real problem. The manner in which we went about the game is. Southampton, for all their brave endeavour and enthusiasm, are a team we should beat.

Sagna looked weary and uninterested, Gervinho and Ramsey are hardly impact substitutes, and Theo was as bad as he was good against Newcastle. No one player can take the blame, however. Doing so is simply a cheap way of venting one’s fury. The collective attitude towards the game is the real issue, and that includes managerial staff. We simply weren’t good enough yesterday, and little can be said or done to disguise that fact. Arsene Wenger himself was less than pleased, and had these uncharacteristically harsh words to say in the press conference:

“It is two points lost if you look at the overall target we had for Christmas. It is frustrating and disappointing as we didn’t create a lot today.

“Our game lacked purpose, penetration and speed, all qualities we have usually but we didn’t see that tonight.

“Maybe we thought we scored seven against Newcastle, we thought we would score again today.

“I felt that we lacked purpose in our game and it was more mental than physical.

In the same interview, Arsene went on to rule out a Thierry Henry return, and express his desire to enter the transfer market.

Investment in the squad is needed. We have a strong first 11 that’s very good on paper. What is lacking is depth, and enough quality in reserve to be able to successfully rotate or replace. 2-3 players of experience and quality would be of a huge benefit to Arsenal.

Ruling out Thierry Henry is a good thing. Not because he isn’t up to the job, or because I want to disrespect a club legend. Because a 35-year-old ex-player who will leave in February isn’t the answer. There are far better permanent options to consider.

With Theo now looking likely to “Sign da Ting“, it would appear our interest in Zaha has fizzled away, which is a shame. Keeping Walcott on the other hand is a good thing and I hope it happens.  One option in the forward area looking quite possible is Atlectico Madrid’s Adrian Lopez, although, in typically parsimonious fashion, the Boss is baulking at the £14m releasue clause in his contract – a price that to me sounds very reasonable for a 24-year-old Spanish international.

Elsewhere it’s all just the customary collection of arbitrary names. Speculation is going to be rife in the coming weeks, and all us supporters can do is hope our manager remains true to his word. It appears we have both the desire and the finances to bring new faces into the sqaud, the only obstacle will be finding players suitably “exceptional” and a price that’s considered reasonable. That, dear reader, is where the problems may arise.

That’s all for today, folks. The comments await your views on the game, and your opinions on incoming players. How did you rate yesterday’s performance? Who would your ideal choice of transfer be? Let me know.

I shall return tomorrow. Thanks for reading.