The Armchair Gooner

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

Santi’s bright future, Usmanov and Arsene want Rooney and tumbleweeds.

No one could agree wether signing Rooney was a good idea.

Morning folks.

First of all, I’d like to point you in the direction of my ask.fm account, which is a very handy application I discovered for answering your questions. Feel free to drop me a line should you wish to inquire of anything. It’s fun replying to my followers.

Onto Arsenal stuff.

We all love Santi Cazorla, don’t we. What’s not to love? The diminutive Spanish magician has given us an excellent season, winning many POTY awards in the process, and he’s accomplished all that playing the game with an infectious smile on his face.

Santi also seems to think the future is a shining beacon of hope for Arsenal, and he sees things improving for all concerned when the new season starts:

“When the team does not win and we do not get the results we want, the collective confidence does drop a little and that is natural.

“Now we have put in a spectacular run-in and you can see the difference in mentality.

“We have great players. I am sure we will be a better team and improve.

“This season we hope we can be even better and win trophies and the supporters can enjoy it. That is what Arsenal really wants.”

I couldn’t agree any more; that is exactly what Arsenal wants. With all talk surrounding our beloved club being mainly insipid transfer dross and re-hashes of familiar tales, it’s nice for a player to come out with some positive words. Cazorla’s first season in an Arsenal shirt was truly wonderful in patches. I begin drooling uncontrollably at the thought of what he might achieve with a campaign in English football under his belt.

Alas, folks – there is some transfer news I feel I ought address. Alisher Usmanov, the shady-looking billionaire some see as they answer to all our perceived troubles has spoken of his admiration for Wayne Rooney and other news outlets have started reporting that Arsene now wants both Higuain and Rooney to form a deadly strike partnership.

Hmmmm.

Now I know the possibility of signing both players is about the same as me scoring a candle-lit fish supper with Scarlet Johansson, but I can’t help but allow myself ponder that thought for a moment…

I wouldn’t be a half bad partnership, and I’ve gone on record as saying I don’t even rate Rooney that much.  They’d certainly be a pair to strike fear into the rest of Europe. Goals wouldn’t be in short supply either…

*slaps self in face violently*

Come on, James – you know it’s a load of nonsense. Don’t get sucked in by it. The story is reported in The Daily Mail, of all places. At this point, I’d be very happy with one so-called “big name” signing. Higuain certainly looks the most likely to actually happen, and with a bit of luck we might get Fellaini, too. Can I realistically see our board throwing the kind of money at Rooney it would take to get him to pen a contract at Arsenal? No, I cannot, and I seriously doubt he’ll be leaving United at all. The whole saga still strikes me as him having a sulk as Robin van Whateverhisnameis takes centre stage at Old Trafford these days.

And that’s today in a nutshell. I think I’ll stop here and admire the tumbleweeds as they roll by. There isn’t a whole lot happening, and I don’t imagine anything concrete is going to surface for quite a while yet. All that remains is for me to point you toward the comments and await your views.

As always; thanks for reading, you beautiful bastards.

Beckham at Arsenal, Villa no and Usmanov says all the right things.

“Who wants a lift home with Andre Santos?”

Afternoon, scrumptious creatures of the interweb.

At a time we all yearn to hear definitive transfer news, we have got some. Instead of that news causing euphoria and dancing, I’m afraid what we have is simply a conformation of players we wont be signing.

Both moves for long-term rumoured target, David Villa, and David Beckham have been ruled out by Arsene in typically defiant fashion. Can’t say I’m all that shocked. Barcelona have long been adamant about refusing to allow David Villa to leave. Perhaps our players ought take to their respective Twitter accounts and begin bleating about ‘Arsenal DNA’ and holding players hostage against their will. You know – act as classy as our Catalonian friends.

The Beckham story on the other hand is simply a case of the press adding 2 things together and coming up with a spectacularly inaccurate answer. We have allowed Beckham to use London Colney to work on his fitness before, and there is nothing more to it than that. Signing a 37-year-old player long past his best days wouldn’t add anything to our current squad, and I’m sure our manager knows that.

One quote I took notice of from Arsene’s interview was this:

“We are still trying, but it’s hard to sign players in January who can improve you.”

I’m not sure I agree with that. Demba Ba would have improved our striking options, Lewis Holtby would have improved our midfield options and Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa would have improved us defensively. All 3 were available, and all 3 have moved to new clubs for reasonable prices.

If none of those players interested our manager, or he didn’t consider them to be of the required quality to play for Arsenal, then fair enough. But to say improvements are difficult to find to me sounds a touch defeatist and untrue. For the right price, a club of our stature and history should have little difficulty attracting high quality players.

Elsewhere in the Goonerverse, Alisher Usmanov has once again taken to the press saying all the right things - if in control, he’d be only too happy to pump funds into the club and give Arsene some financial backing.

Sounds appealing, doesn’t it? Well, I’m always dubious of the man. Perhaps it’s his squinty face and nefarious features that fill me with a sense of dread, but I often find myself thinking it all sounds too good to be true. Stan Kroenke may be ‘Silent’ and a constant source of venting for frustrated fans, but there’s a lot of truth in that old adage, “It’s better the devil you know”.

That’s all for today. The comments await your delicious thoughts and opinions on the day’s news. Use ‘em – it makes me feel all giddy with joy and important. Thanks for reading today, you beautiful bastards. I shall return tomorrow with a preview of the game against Liverpool.

Theo packs his bags, Usmanov ups the ante and Robin.

“Don’t leave me Robin. I’m coming with you!”

Howdy, partners!

It’s not much fun writing about the Arsenal at the moment. With Robin’s bombshell, news is now floating around about little Theo. Allegedly (not ‘apparently’) our speedy winger is ready to pack his bags too. His contract and the signing of was hugely dependent on the outcome of Robin’s negotiations. Now that our captain has sullied his once-good name with a statement so ill-advised it makes casting Keira Knightly in Domino appear positively inspired, it’s widely expected that Walcott won’t sign either.

*sighs*

To be brutally honest; if Walcott leaves, I won’t lose any sleep. Sure, on his day he’s a good player capable of tearing defences to shreds. Trouble is, those days tend to be few and far between. The rest of the time we’re left to scream in frustration as he aims for the corner flag, shows the first touch of a baby elephant and scurries about the pitch like a stabbed rat. To compound matters, he seems to think season after season of unfulfilled promise warrants a pay rise reportedly to be in the region of £100k.

I know many of you will strongly disagree with what I’ve just said, and, of course, you are more than entitled to do so. I wouldn’t seek to discount your opinions simply because they differ from mine – regardless of what tetchy commenters might have you believe. If you feel I’m off the mark with that assessment, then please feel free to put me right.

Yesterday also saw Alishar Usmanov’s Red & White Holdings release comfortably the most opportunistic statement I’ve read in a while, but also one that contains a great deal it’s difficult to argue with. For  sometime, they’ve been itching to oust ‘Silent’ Stan Kroenke, and what better way to garner some support from us fans than to tug at our heartstrings and aim for our current anathema. Here’s a few choice exerts from the open letter in question:

??Yet again we are faced with losing our true marquee player at the club because we cannot assure him of the future direction and give confidence that we can win trophies. Where are the safeguards to ensure the this doesn??t happen again and again in the future???

??It doesn??t help to turn a blind eye to the reality of the situation and keep thinking of ourselves as being in the same league as Real Madrid, Chelsea, Manchester City and Barcelona. To have a fighting chance of success, which means winning trophies, we need to match them in every aspect, including, if not first and foremost, financial.??

Those are the two points that struck me the most, and I’d agree with them totally. In all honesty; I’d be making false claims if I told you I was well informed about the conduct of our board members and the apparent feud. If you’d like to read a more thorough account of the letter by folks who know immeasurably more than I ever could, you can do so here and here.

The letter itself was quite obviously released the day after Robin’s statement to ensure it had maximum impact. I don’t particuarly agree with the timing, or it’s intentions to unsettle and create the flase position of  a ‘shining knight’ for Red & White Holdings, but it’s very difficult to disagree with some of the points made. The letter in its entirey is available for your perusal here at Le Grove. (Pedro doesn’t mind me stealing his stuff, I give him %90 of his traffic…)

It would appear we ought be thinking about strapping ourselves in from the long run, folks – I don’t see the current shit storm relenting any time soon. Arsenal are going to be the focal point for as much speculative garbage as the media can muster. Words like ‘crisis’ and ‘upheaval’ will be brandished with careless disregard wherever  we cast our eyes. It’s important we stay together, that we remain the one constant at the club.

Thanks for reading today, you wonderful people. The comments are below. Use ‘em!

Lastly, and as a special treat for those Spurs fans crawling out of their dungeons to gloat, I thought I’d remind you of these idiots the last time you predicted our downfall;

“Don’t worry lads, we won’t regret this or look at all foolish”

I shall return tomorrow.