Posts Tagged ‘Arsene Wenger’

Football

Arsenal update: Wenger speaks about Rooney and Fabregas and has Villa signed a pre-contract deal?

By Stefano on June 3rd, 2013

Arsene Wenger has been speaking to Al Jazeera and may or may not have been dropping some pretty serious hints about who he fancies signing in the summer.

Judging by these words I think we can safely assume that Wayne Rooney, who Wenger has previously described as most talented English player he had seen, is on his radar

“Rooney could be an interesting player for everybody in the world, who would turn him down?

“David Moyes’ first challenge is to go in to Manchester and bridge the gap between him and Rooney. If that is feasible or not depends on his personality and if Rooney bears a grudge or not, we will see.

“It will be interesting to see how that will be handled.”

Of course Rooney may end up staying at United, but Arsenal would be a great choice for the England player if he decides to stay in England. His wages might be a problem, but if Rooney is set on leaving United and staying in the Premiership he might have to be prepared to take a hit,

Wenger has also been lavishing praise on another Arsenal target – their former caption Cecs Fabregas

“I think at the moment he’s lacking the confidence of being a regular player,” said Wenger. “Recently he has not been that.

“Cesc is such a passionate player, a player of such quality, that it must hurt him not to play in every single game. That’s what he misses. When you come in and out you never play with full confidence.”

If Fabregas does decide to leave Barcelona it is highly likely that he will return to Arsenal. I think though the smart money is on him sticking it out for another year at least.

There’s more here.

Speaking of Barcelona Talksport is reporting that striker David Villa has apparently signed a pre-contract deal with Arsenal.

Spanish football expert Axel Torres says he has been told by a source that Barcelona striker David Villa wants to move to England, with the Spain international reportedly showing the club’s board an pre-contract agreement to sign for Arsenal.

The ball is then in the Catalan club’s court, but with Neymar in the bag and other possible moves opportunities might be fairly limited for Villa at the Nou Camp next season.



Football

Moyes is serious about Fabregas. Are Arsenal and Wenger too?

By Stefano on May 29th, 2013

In what could be a nightmare scenario for Arsenal fans it appears that David Moyes has made Cesc Fabregas his number one target.

According to The Daily Mail Moyes ‘has targeted midfield as the area in greatest need of strengthening and that Fabregas is one of his prime targets, following an initial meeting to discuss potential acquisitions for this summer.’

The Mail also suggests that United will have a rival for the ex-Arsenal player too in the guise of Man City. It also says that Barcelona are ready to let the player go and that inevitably the Premiership seems his most likely destination.

The news is certain to send a shiver down the spin of Arsenal fans. The thought of both Fabregas and Van Persie lining up against them next season would certainly be massively depressing for Gunners followers.

The question is though – if Fabregas is coming back to the Premiership will it not be to his old club?

There are some goods signs for Gooners to cling on to. Firstly Fabregas is still an Arsenal fan and regularly watches the games either on TV or when he can at the Emirates. Secondly Barca still owe Arsenal money from his, and Alex Song’s transfers.

Wenger himself said in January

“I’m not convinced that he will not one day come back here because he is a real Arsenal man. He loves Arsenal, he watches every Arsenal game.”

Also there are unsubstantiated rumours of a buy back clause which was inserted into his Barca contract.

The question is though do Arsenal want the player back? His skill and vision would certainly rejuvenate Arsenal’s midfield.

I think that the thought of Fabregas lining up for United would be too much for Arsenal fans. But if there is no rooms for him in a midfield brimming with world class talent – well Cazorla and Wilshere anyhow – it might just be where the Spaniard ends up.



Football

Arsenal update: Benteke wants to be a Gunner, but Higuain fancies an old lady

By Stefano on May 24th, 2013

There’s good news and bad news on the striker front for Arsenal fans this morning.

The really bad news is that it seems unlikely that Real Madrid’s Gonzalo Higuain will be and Arsenal player as according to a newspaper in Italy he is heading for Juventus.

La Repubblica suggests that the marksman had already agreed to join Juventus on a four year deal. The only potential stumbling block is the price with Madrid wanting £25 million and Juve obviously not wanting pay anything like that.

The only sliver of hope for Arsenal,fans is that Juve are also supposed to be on the verge of nabbing Stevan Jovetic too. And they have already lined up Athletic Bilbao’s Spanish forward Fernando Llorente on a free transfer. So do the team need a trio of new world class strikers?

One goal score with plenty of Premiership experience has given the club a bit of come and get plea.

Christian Benteke told the Express yesterday…

“I hope that if I leave my club a deal can be done more quickly than the one last year,” he said.

“There is no point in me getting into a tug-of-war with Villa, and I don’t think there is any need for one. If the chance comes up for me to join a club like Arsenal, I am convinced that we can reach a compromise where everybody comes out a winner.

The paper says that £20 million would be enough to scoop the Belgian marksman, but that Atletico Madrid are also keen on the player too.



Football

Bald Eagles who look like Arsenal’s Arsene Wenger – genius Tumblr blog

By Stefano on May 21st, 2013

tumblr_mn4dj3U8cq1srin97o1_1280In case you didn’t know Yahoo bought blogging site Tumblr this week. What it got for just over $1 billion was a whole load of teenagers pic blogs, some random adult sites and gems like this. In my opinion it makes that purchase worth every penny.

Go here for more

tumblr_mn4dp6BvWr1srin97o1_1280



Football

Jovetic to Arsenal update

By Stefano on May 20th, 2013

If Fiorentina’s talented Montenegrin is to join Arsenal three things needed to happen to make the deal certain. So let’s take a peek at those three things and where we are with them.

1 Fiorentina not to quality for the Champions League, but Arsenal to make it. Well thanks to Koscielny’s goal the Gunners will be in the draw for CL qualifying, but they won’t be facing Fiorentina, who were pipped at the line by Milan. Jovetic could well have stayed at the club had they qualified, but now it seems certain that he will go and seek Champions League football elsewhere.

2 Juventus not to chase the player – There have been rumours that the Italian Champions had been sizing up Jovetic for a while. However this morning Fiorentina sporting director Daniele Prade has revealed that Juventus have not spoken to him about the player.

Prade told Sky Italia

“We have said many times that an answer [over Jovetic's future] can only be given after a meeting between the president and Jovetic.”

“Juventus? I have not talked with them because they have never asked to talk.”

3 Wenger decides he wants the player - Earlier in the season it seemed like a done deal. However Jovetic’s second half of the season has been a little disappointing. He finished the year with just twelve goals. Wenger is clearly a huge fan – but he has other options too in Higuain, Villa and maybe even Rooney.

I think Jovetic will either be announced as an Arsenal player in the next 48 hours as the deal has already been done and now ratified following Arsenal’s qualification for the CL.

If that isn’t the case I wonder if it will run and run as Wenger seeks a bargain.



Football

Why Arsenal will announce a new signing today

By Stefano on May 20th, 2013

So the speculation can finally end. Arsenal are back in the Champions League next year – well provided they negotiate the qualifying round – and that £70 million burning a hole in Arsene’s pocket can be used to buy some of Europe’s elite players.

One thing is for sure. Arsenal will announce a new signing in the next 24 hours.

Here is the theory. Arsenal haven’t been able to open season ticket renewals for gold members (the vast majority of their fans) until today as they didn’t know how many games they would be playing next year. With the season over they need that money in their bank account as fast as possible – in fact Gooners will only have ten days in which to pay it!

Economic pressure means that there is a section of fans who are mulling over a renewal of their season ticket. They need a reason to sign up for another year and quick.

So I wonder if those deals with Higuain and Jovetic – well at least one and quite possibly the former – will get announced today.

So expect Arsene to be busy today..



Football

Wayne Rooney to Arsenal? Surely not…

By Stefano on May 17th, 2013

The Wayne Rooney to Arsenal story has reignited again this morning courtesy of the Daily Mail.

The paper says Arsenal have been discussing a bid for the England player since March and are now poised to make their move.

However it also adds

‘putting together a financial package to land him is the major obstacle to a deal.
Lukas Podolski, the top earner at the Emirates Stadium, is on just over £100,000 a week compared to Rooney’s £250,000.’

It just won’t happen will it?! If Wenger can get Jovetic, a similar player who arguably comes with less baggage for £25 million and £120k a week, he is not going to fork out stupid money for Rooney.

I think this is serious mischief making by the Mail.



Football

Arsenal appear to have signed French striker…

By Stefano on May 17th, 2013

So says French radio station RMC which is reporting that Arsenal have agreed a deal to sign Auxerre striker Yaya Sanogo on a freebie this summer. Apparently it s four year deal for the striker who is currently plying his trade with Ligue 2 side Auxerre.

If it is true then the good news is that Sanogo ceryaionly knows where the sticks are. The 20 year old has scored eight goals in seven games for Auxerre in Ligue 2 season.

The bad news is that he is a bit injury prone. But then I seem to remember another Arsenal striker had issues with injuries for a while…

So is Sanogo the next Henry? Or the next Joel Campbell. We will find out soon enough. Above is his four goal haul against Laval in March which probably got Wenger and Grimandi over excited. Mind you, two of those goals my gran could have put away…

This one does sound like a goer to me though.



Football

Arsenal update: David Villa – it is us or Spurs?

By Stefano on May 17th, 2013

So David Villa’s quest to re start his carer in North London and the Premiership continues, however the news this morning is that the Spanish striker might not heading for his expected destination

The Barca man, who very nearly joined Arsenal in the winter window is, according to radio station Cadena Ser and newspaper Mundo Deportivo, on his way to White Hart Lane and that a £15million fee has already been agreed between the two clubs.

However any deal is predicated on whether or not Spurs qualify for the Champions League.

Presumably if Arsenal qualify then the striker will want to join the red and white half of North London.

So what is really going on? I wonder if the Vila rumour is similar to supposed Arsenal deals for Higuain and Jovetic.

Maybe agreements have been signed but are only going to be activated if the club achieves Champions League football.

Both Arsenal and Spurs will need to announce some big transfers on Monday to ensure that, in these recessionary times, those wavering over renewing their season tickets cough up the cash.

Personally I think Villa is too old and out of form for £15 million. What do you think?



Football

Arsenal update: David Villa, Lukasz Piszczek, Julian Draxler

By Stefano on May 10th, 2013

Another of the winter’s main targets for Arsene Wenger is back in the news again. Barca’s David Villa is the subject of much speculation this morning as it was revealed that he allegedly had one one foot at Arsenal in the winter.

Spanish paper Mundo Deportivo claims that the North Londoners had offered £8.5m for the 31-year-old, but the La Liga leaders wanted a larger sum. Villa was so keen to leave that he even offered to negotiate part of the deal himself.

Ultimately Barca decided that they needed the 31 year old for their domestic and European campaigns and he stayed.

Villa has had a disappointing end to his season with poor personal form as well as Barca’s undignified Champions League exit. He is still likely to leave Barca at the end of the season, but whether Arsene Wenger re-ignites his interest in the player is another matter.

A couple of sources have reiterated that Arsene Wenger has his sights on a new right back in case Bacary Sagna decides to leave the club in the summer. The Mail reports that the club are after Borussia Dortmund defender Lukasz Piszczek as a potential replacement for Sagna after the Frenchman refused to sign a one year contract extension.

The 27 year old Pole has been in excellent form this season, but doubts remain over whether Dortmund will let yet another star player leave.

Finally one player who seemingly isn’t Emirates-bound is Schalke’s Julian Draxler. Yesterday the 19 year old signed a deal with the German club that will take him through until 2018.



Football

Arsenal update: news on QPR targets from Harry and Arsene

By Stefano on May 3rd, 2013

Arsenal travel to QPR on Saturday and as Arsene Wenger has reiterated today they only have one thing on their minds – winning three points.

Maybe afterwards though Arsene will sit down for post match cuppa with Harry and talk about the future of several QPR players.

The most obvious one is Julio Cesar who seems to have emerged as Arsenal’s number one goalkeeping target.

Wenger is clearly keen and Cesar wants to leave. But Harry is obviously angling for as big a fee as possible. He told Sky Sports

“He’s a top, top goalkeeper. There’s no doubt about that. He’s a Brazil international so for him to play in the Championship next year would be difficult. I can understand that.”

“But he’s a good goalkeeper. It would take a good offer. How this game works is you buy players and those who don’t do well, you’re stuck with them but those who do well, they think they’ll walk away for nothing.

“You’ve got to get what you feel is value for him. He’s going to cost decent money if anyone wants to buy him. He’s a good goalkeeper.”

Wenger might also have word about Loic Remy. Wenger said of him today at his press conference.

“I’ve known him for years,” said Wenger. “He is a very efficient striker.”

He may only cost £8 million too. If Arsenal fail to qualify for the Champions League then he may end up rivaling Frenchman Olivier Giroud in leading the line next year. If Arsenal do grab a CL spot then he could be teaming up with Stevan Jovetic.

Then there’s a certain Chris Samba too.

Oh, to be a fly on the wall.

.



features, Football

Henry? Laudrup? Klopp? Who will be the next Arsenal manager?

By Stefano on April 30th, 2013

Ok, so he might not go this summer (but then he might) but Arsene Wenger can’t go on forever and Arsenal will soon have to address the issue of finding a new manager.

On one level Arsenal are still a pretty attractive club to manage – nice stadium, stable-ish board, probability of Champions League football – they tick a lot of boxes.

But the last couple of season have seem them slip down the list of Europe’s elite clubs and they can’t be quite as picky as they once were.

The manager that the fans dreamt of, Pep Guardiola, will soon be ensconced in Bayern Munich snapping up players like Gotze who Wenger would have loved to have bought. And as for Jose, the bonkers Portuguese genius is probably on his way back to Chelsea.

So with a lot of the big names out of the frame who else is there who could take over at The Emirates if Wenger does take the Eurostar and exit this (or next) summer.

1 David Moyes - The Scotsman would be an obvious contender. He is ready to make the move to a bigger club and might not get a better opportunity than Arsenal. He has worked wonders in creating teams for next to no cash- something that will appeal to the Arsenal board – and tactically he is very sound. He is not the dream manager that some of the fans want, but he could become an Arsenal legend (the new George Graham) if things go well. If things go badly though he could find himself as the new Bruce Rioch- out on his ear after a year.

2 Michael Laudrup – In my book the Dane could well be favourite. He might have committed to Swansea, but I think if the job were offered him (with Champions League football if Arsenal qualify) he would take it. He would be a hit with the fans and the type of football his team play is fairly similar to Arsenal. He also has the advantage of possibly bringing his captain Ashley Williams and star striker Michu with him.

3 Jürgen Klopp - Klopp may decide that in taking Dortmund to a Champions League final he has gone as far as he can. He has already lost Gotze to Bayern and several other star Dortmund players could be heading for the exit too. Arsenal would a be a real challenge for the young, ambitious and articulate German. Again he could bring some prize assets with him too – Lewandowski?

4 Joachim Löw – The current German manager might fancy a return to club football and Arsenal would be a good fit for a boss whose teams play fast attacking, fluid football.

5 Thierry Henry – The very long shot. But the fans would welcome his return, he is very popular with the players and he loves both London and Arsenal. He has some pretty amazing contacts too. Maybe the club could appoint a director of football to work with him in the short term too. Stranger things have happened.



Football

The five reasons why Arsenal’s Arsene Wenger isn’t PSG-bound this summer

By Stefano on April 30th, 2013

First it was clear that he was staying, and now the Telegraph has suggested that he is on his way to France. So where will Arsene Wenger be managing next season? I think there is only one place – Arsenal.

The Frenchman isn’t about to jettison his North London project a year earlier for the following reasons.

1 At Arsenal he runs the show – If he wants a player he works with the board to get them. At PSG it could be different. There are the club’s cash backers who may insist on signings too. Did Anecelotti really want David Beckham in his squad? Wenger has huge power at Arsenal, that won’t be the case in Paris.

2 He won’t want the pressure – Sure next season at Arsenal could be tough, it will be especially difficult for the Frenchman if the signings and real campaign for silverware doesn’t materialise. But in Paris success will have to be instantaneous. If Wenger doesn’t at the very least stroll to the Ligue One title and mount a very serious challenge for the Champions League he could be out on his ear. Does a guy in his 60s need that kind of pressure?

3 It would mean breaking his contract with Arsenal – Arsene just isn’t that type of person. He will want to see what happens next season with the Gunners. He may after all be angling for an extension to his contract if things go well.

4 There will still be plenty of options in summer 2014 – If Wenger does still want to manage PSG there’s a good chance the job will be available – especially if the manager that the club choose doesn’t succeed.

5 If he goes now he will be leaving the club at a low point – Arsenal might still finish third, but there is no doubt that this has been Wenger’s most difficult season at the club. He will be desperate to go out on a high and one last crack at winning some silverware is very tempting for him.



Football

Is Wenger leaving Arsenal and heading for PSG?

By Stefano on April 30th, 2013

I though we had this one sorted yesterday when Arsene Wenger seemed to commit to Arsenal for the next twelve months, but apparently not.

In case you haven’t seen it though this morning The Telegraph is suggesting that leading figures at PSG have been telling members of the French footballing elite that Arsene is on his way.

And not just in summer 2014 when his contract with Arsenal runs out – but this summer.

The theory runs like this. Carlo Anecleotti has said he wants to go – possibly to replace the Chelsea-bound Jose Mourinho at Real Madrid. PSG need a manager to guide them through a serious crack at the Champions League next season. The French club is quite possibly the only club that Wenger would consider. His family could even stay in London while he works in Paris

It would also mean leaving Arsenal behind hopefully for Wenger safe in the knowledge that the club has weathered the worst and can also make a real attempt at the Champions League/Premiership next season off the back of £70 milion worth of investment.

As the Telegraph reports

Asked about the rumours in his native France connecting him to Ancelotti’s job, Wenger said after the 1-1 draw with Manchester United on Sunday: “First of all I don’t know too much about what’s been said about me. Then I’m concentrating on the next game and the next season. At the end of my contract I’ll see what I can do. I’ve always respected my contracts. I can’t see at my age why that should change.” Seasoned Wenger-watchers detected a note of ambiguity in that statement.

So what do you think? Is Arsene on his way back to France?



Football

Will Arsenal fans ever forgive Robin Van Persie?

By Stefano on April 29th, 2013

There was one very brief, but very poignant moment yesterday at The Emirates. After heading towards the away fans to applaud them the ex-Arsenal striker turned awkwardly towards a section of Arsenal fans and continued to clap. But with his ears ringing with boos the Dutchman realised that no one in the home section of the stadium was going to appreciate his gesture and he headed off down the tunnel.

I must admit I had very mixed feelings about RVP’s return. I knew it was going to hurt, but I wasn’t quite sure how much. Fortunately I missed the shenanigans at the start of the game, but I am told that it passed off without too much of an incident. And while seeing the fella tearing down on our defence wearing that horrible white shirt was an awful sight, I really couldn’t bring myself to add my voice to the pantomime booers.

I think I had moved on a lot more than I had previously thought.

As for RVP I don’t think that anyone can deny that he still has a real affection for the club. Heading for the wrong dressing room and hanging out with his old team mates afterwards said it all yesterday.

The sad part is that it is also clear that after yesterday RVP really wants Arsenal fans to still love him.

Today Patrice Evra has confirmed that RVP was hurt by the boos that greeted his every touch of the ball.

But then again, what did he expect…

So will Arsenal fans ever forgive RVP? I do wonder if the bitterness will start to subside a little. I think much of what we feel about him is fueled by the fact that he has been so successful at United. Next season won’t be the same. His lack of form in recent weeks shows that he is unlikely to be the exceptional player that he was at the end of his Arsenal carer and his start at United for much longer.

Maybe, and it is a big maybe, if Arsenal seriously compete for the tile next year and even finish above United things will start to look different.

So even though the manner in which he left Arsenal was pretty low and the fact that he went to one of our deadliest rivals, I wonder if in the long run RVP might be hailed once again as an Arsenal hero.

Time will tell…




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