Hey Ho! Hope all u crazy footie fans out there are doing fine while the world mocks the idiots who took the Mayans seriously. As for Arsenal, five of the lads have signed contracts which is great news as it “ties them down” (the media love that line don’t they?) and avoids any further shenanigans with players leaving. But as things stand Jenkinson will be taking over from Sagna by season’s end as the French Right back looks like he’ll be leaving for certain. Unfortunate but it’s nothing new and fans are pretty much used to the whole thing; not that will stop the outburst of anger when Sagna does leave.
Rumors have erupted all over the internet regarding the contracts signed by the players, regarding the wage amounts at least, they are rumored to be:
Wilshere – £85k p/w
Ramsey – £60k
Chamberlain – £52k p/w
Gibbs – £52k p/w
Jenkinson – £30k p/w
Now, I realize that it’s rather silly to pass judgment on information that could be entirely false, but if true, it is disappointing to see that Arsenal have not learned from past mistakes and have yet again chosen to lavish exorbitant salaries on youngsters. Also considering the fact that contracts are usually re-negotiated in three years or so, I opine that the salaries could have been a little lower. Yes, the prevailing market rate for English “talent” is high, but the likes of Gibbs and Ox are yet to prove themselves on a more consistent basis and giant pay checks will only help inflate already bloated egos. I know I will get much stick for saying this but Ox seems like the type of chap to whom ‘loyalty’ or ‘club allegiance’ mean very little, I wont be very surprised to see him “do an Adebayor” in a few years time. But I do hope that I am wrong.
Ramsey again has been in positional limbo since his return, as I have said in the past, his abysmal performances are not entirely his fault and Wenger shared a nice slice of blame (served by rabid fans with a dollop of invective cream and lathered in rage sauce) for playing Aaron in what is clearly not his usual role. With this in mind, the wage seems a little on the higher side. I pray (to Bergkamp of course) that he gets back to his best as he’s a player who’s capable of spectacular things.
Jack is our midfield prodigy born and bred in “the Arsenal way”™; he is definitely one for the future! Wilshere already has every gooner eating out of his palm and has endeared himself to the gunning public not only due to his technical brilliance but also because of his on-pitch attitude, loyalty and a relatively down-to-earth nature. He has also really made an impact after his return from injury, which was a pleasant surprise (Hello Aaron! Didn’t see you there!); a pundit would say he has “hit the ground running”. I’m being a little partial but I’d say he deserves his wages as he the player on whose shoulders Arsenal teams will be built on for at least the next decade (provided he stays).
Jenkinson – A Gooner living the dream! We watch him and live vicariously through his joy. It is great to see him commit to the club, at a very reasonable price too. Let’s hope he goes on to become a world class RB.
On other contracts: I refuse to waste words on Theo or his dilly-dallying nonsense, while I’d prefer that he:
(1) Sign da ting (2) Stop blabbering about being a CF and (3) Pipe down and concentrate on wing-play. I don’t always get what I want so it’s not a big boo-hoo if he leaves.
It is “that” season again and I don’t like to indulge in too much ‘transfer talk’ on the blog, but now and then I really can’t resist the temptation to blab a little about potential targets and who I wish Wenger would procure. But before that…
Recently UEFA has brought down the wrath of the Club Financial Control Body on a few clubs regarding their non-compliance to the FFP set of rules. Usually I would just ignore this as bureaucratic eye wash of Platini and his cronies picking on smaller clubs while letting the giants fly through unscathed as they cause infinite harm to the transfer market with their profligate ways. But what caught me eye was that Malaga CF are one among the clubs that are banned from taking part in the next edition of the Champions League. Yep, if you thought “Santi’s old home”, you were on the money.
The team that has stormed into the Last 16 round of the Champ’s league with style and aplomb boasts of considerable firepower even after being shorn of Santi and his talents. Primary among them is Francisco Román Alarcón Suárez, or Isco for short. He operates as an attacking midfielder, is barely Twenty-one years of age (I hear the “Arsene likes’em young” jokes coming along) and has already received his call for the Spanish national team last February. Breaking into a team that boasts the likes of Xavi, Iniesta, Mata, Cazorla and David Silva in the midfield alone is no mean feat and is itself a testament to his ability. Del Bosque may be spoilt for choice but he usually picks a mean team and if he thinks Isco is good enough I’ll take his word on that. Though, I must confess that I have barely ever seen him play and a few youtube compilations prove very little, I’ve been hearing plenty of nice things about him from followers of La Liga and I very highly doubt that anyone would object to a player who Santi himself speaks highly about. His release clause too is rumored to be a paltry €17 million which would barely dent Wenger’s “war chest”. It also helps that the other big boys of Europe have already spent big during the summer and would chase the lad’s signature only halfheartedly which means that for once Arsenal are in decent position to win a bidding war.
I suspect that some fans would argue that our midfield is rather crowded and that a DM would be a higher priority but Ramsey just hasn’t been cutting it and could do with a spell in the reserves until he gets his mojo back; also Santi and Jack could do with some rotation in the center lest we become all too predictable; Wenger needs to take this opportunity to cannibalize clubs like Malaga and strip them bare of all talent when the opportunity comes along especially when our promise of Champions League football becomes a particularly significant bargaining chip. Think of it as Football Darwinism: City, United and the other rich buggers (Great white sharks) who are higher up the financial food chain nick Arsenal’s(Bottle nosed Dolphin) players with promises of giant salaries and we promptly pick on a smaller animal(so Malaga CF = trout?) slaughter it mercilessly and consume it whole. It is not pleasant but it’s the survival of the fittest (read richest). Now that I have ripped off Darwin and demeaned his life’s work by relating it to football and money, I’m satiated. Let’s move on.
Today’s match against Roberto Martinez’s men should be easy. But I do hope that Giroud starts in the middle. He still not fully acclimatized to the Premier league as yet and a goal or two against (perceived) relegation fodder (no disrespect to Martinez whom I really admire) will do nicely for his confidence. If all goes according to plan we should have three points in the bag by day’s end.
I’ll catch up with you next week… Drop a few lines in the comments box cause every time you do, one duck billed platypus gets saved from a cruel death due to deforestation (if it can work on facebook, it should work for me!)