Thursday, July 05, 2007

Silence is the way Arsenal do business.

I have to admit to feeling a little sheepish. It was on Sunday that I unleashed a, relatively, stringent attack on the way the club had conducted themselves since the Thierry Henry transfer. The silence, I ventured, was unbecoming of a club with hundred of thousands of members and millions of supporters. Where were the statements of intent, the reassurances? Where were the new players we so badly needed? The club was a shambles, I felt: arrogant to its support; unambitious in the transfer market.

The next day, completely out of the blue, Arsenal unveiled a major summer signing. With no warning, Eduardo's picture appeared on the website, and twenty-four hours later he was an Arsenal player (subject to work-permit). I almost feel like taking some credit for this signing: I'm sure that, in some way, the signing was almost like the cosmically club slapping me in the face, telling me to grow up and stop complaining. Possibly -to say this may seem a little egotistical, I know.

As Goodplaya stated shortly afterwards, Eduardo had not been linked with Arsenal whatsoever, in any mainstream or internet-based media, save for one or two blog-based, completely speculative comments. While we cheerfully made lists of Henry's replacements, the club quietly went about its business.

And this is the way, more often than not, Arsenal conduct themselves. Whilst Real Madrid and Barcelona openly and defiantly covet our players, and United have, essentially, an affair with old Owen Hargreaves, Wenger's signings are usually a surprise.

To take a few recent examples, who doesn't remember the signing of Jose Reyes coming almost completely out of nowhere? Or the signing of Fabianski, which came after months in which we were linked to a host of keepers across the land, with no mention whatsoever of our new Polish shot-stopper. And the signings of players we have been linked to, say Rosicky or Baptista, usually come months after our initial interest was allegedly registered.

Arsene keeps his targets close to his chest; but he has his targets. He is extremely mindful of keeping the players he wants to sign quiet, after several recent occasions in which rival clubs have attempted to gazump us after we've opened negotiations.

So, in those long-summer months sans football, I've made peace with the silence emanating from the club. Don't do what I did and unnecessarily fret, even if our rivals seem to be outspending us in the market. If Arsene is to be our manager we have to trust him. He'll get us the players we need, but he'll do it quietly. It's the Arsenal way. The polar opposite to the way this bunch conduct. (If any conversation did take place, I imagine it was a perfunctory two-word reply by Arsene to Madrid's offer).

Elsewhere, this has finally come out. Pardon me if I don't join the 'stampede' at the club shop. I heard it was shoulder to shoulder in the Armory today. I do quite like the new Premiership lettering though.

Only a few weeks til the first friendlies. Let's hope there's a few new faces by then.

33 comments:

dan said...

Your article about silence wasn't wrong, it still would be nice for wenger to come and discuss why TH left, where is the club going and what does his future hold and what sort of players we are looking for. I think it is very poor that he hasn't commented on why our captain and best player, the one he gauranteed would be there only a month ago was allowed to leave. as for the signing it self the guy obviously knows where the goal is and will hopefully he will be exactly what we have been crying out for for the past year. equally on it's own or added to by sagna alone is hardly going to put us where we need and want to be, we all know there is plenty of cash to spend and would like to see how he plans to bridge the 21 point gap plus the the additions of Hargreaves, Tevez etc etc etc, let alone what Liverpool, Chelsea and Spurs have been up to. i still think there is much to be concerned about, lets hope another three or four secret deals are being made, i doubt it somehow.

Anonymous said...

Yes, we need much more signings,atleast tw. Otherwise, our guns ar egonna be down to 20 or much points behind. We need to have much wide squad, taking into consideration our injury prone palyers and the gap that will be left in African Cup. We need an exprienced defender and a bloody winger, don't you think? Just these two only. and then we will be having 4-1-3-2

Anonymous said...

is your problem with the away really as sad as the spuds reason? who gives a monkies shit what colour we play in as long away from home as we win....personally I would pay £40 for a pink kit if it increases the chance or beating spurs at their place for the title.

Goonerboy said...

No, it's not the Spuds thing - I just believe that Arsenal away kits should be yellow and blue.

I know we've had white away kits before, but I think these are the colours that best represent the club over the last fifty years or so, and I don't think they needed to change. I also objected to the appropriation of Herbert Chapman for Nike's advertising campaign.

Anonymous said...

Interesting, but I dont call our signing major.

Partically when you consider Liverpool signed Torres, Manu are looking to sign Tevez, and the best we can come up with is an unknown who has not been playing in a major league.

I hope Eduardo goes on to score 38 goals in the prem but I feel its another season were we battle for 4th.

Goonerboy said...

I'm going to stick my neck out and say that Eduardo will score more goals than Tevez or Torres next year. Just beacause we haven't bought big - either in money or name - doesn't mean we should write off Eduardo yet.

Torres has not scored more than 15 goals per season in Madrid; he won't do so at Liverpool. I'd like to see Tevez at the club, but with the money being asked for him, and the legal issues surrounding his ownership, I can see why Arsene is put off.

We still need a left-winger. That I will concede. We need 2 more players before next season starts.

dan said...

we will certainly not be challenging for anything more than that. it seems strange to me how many fans seem content with that fact, you would have expected more anger as to what is going on, how our beloved club is falling further and further back, but those who say things do not look good just get abused by those who think everything is great and that AW is the messiah, I just can not see it, it is so frustrating and demoralizing watching what is going on. at the moment it is hard to get excited about the new season.

dan said...

it is not juat about a "big" signing, they need new blood all over the place, the club needs a lift, the players need a lift, it all needs igniting, not the stagnant state of affairs they are currently in. One more mid level signing which is most likely will just add on to the perception that we are just another club under the big 3 fighting for that 4th spot. we should be better than that surely, or used to be anyway.

Norwegian gooner said...

I cant but agree with dan. The uncertainty in the club is obvious. We, the fans are the lifeblood of the club and should get some answers from the club as to why TH left. Enough bullshit. He was our captain and left, its a giveaway of our current demoralized state of being. The only thing that would get us back on the right track would be a signed and delivered contract by AW and some more fresh blood. I cant but feel frustrated of the way business is done. No explanations, apparently little ambition, and a lot of unanswered questions.

Anonymous said...

one of the reasons a signing was made was due to the launch of a new away kit! there will be another one just before the emirates cup, these c**ts that run arsenal are taking us for fools..like the fools that no doubt queued up to buy the new kit.i'm not knocking da silva, he looks like a good finisher( but for the price of my season ticket i would expect a much bigger signing(not torres) to show our intent next year.plus 2 more of similar ilk.
before anyone questions my loyalty to arsenal(i been supporting since 78)we need major investing in the team and yes we need to win something every year, that is what i believe in every year ,even in the early 80,s when we were crap, otherwise i would not be supporting The Arsenal, i would of changed to the spuds in th 80,s if i wanted no success, even tho i was born up the road in archway(hospitals still there (whittington)so come on arsenal show us your real intent and sign on the dotted line arsene and invest more in the team!
or you and the board F**k off and let someone who is commited to manage and people who want to invest in arsenal .invest.
if tevez leaves west spam and you don't sign then F**k you and your lies, i heard you say that you would be interested in a player like that..

Anonymous said...

You just hope Wenger's two-word reply isn't "yes, please". And, I'm sure Eduardo will be good, but I think Wenger's trying to be too smart. Sometimes you need a freakishly expensive signing just to show that you afford it. It's fun, if nothing else. I'll be gutted if Tevez signs for Man Utd.

Anonymous said...

lol, loads of negativities around here. fact is: ARSENAL FC IS NOT AMONG THE BIGGEST CLUB IN ENGLAND...YET! we are smaller than manu, 'pool, newcastle and now chelsea MONEYWISE. we are on par with aston villa, spudz and now west ham. expecting arsenal to win something EACH YEAR??!!! BOLLOX! go and 'support' manu, real, barca, milan, juve, b munchen, liverpool and chelsea. THEN u can DEMAND titles.

guess those clubs are glad u don't 'support' them ;)

if ur not happy i'm sure there are plenty of REAL supporters who are more than willing to overtake ur season ticket.

what a bunch of lowlife moaners!

Jammathon said...

Arsenal have signed MacFarlane!!!!!

http://tinyurl.com/2tygag

Anonymous said...

I do not understand why Arsenal has to sign a left winger now that we have two left footed attackers...is it a must? Can we instead sign a right winger if it is going to add to the team at all.We need depth but the team demands has changed since the departure of Henry and the arrival of Eduardo...
Michel

Dong Zhou said...

When we went a season unbeaten, how many of those players were big money buys with a great reputation when we bought them? The Dutch Master maybe and Pires are the only ones that come to mind. What is the point on spending millions on a player that won't improve the team for the sake of it? Maybe the best idea would be to buy players that would, you know, improve the team.

We needed a finisher, we got a cheap one but a goal scorer all the same. Liverpool meanwhile added yet another tall forward with little new to offer and without goal scoring record. Man U are singing a player with a very odd contract situation who plays the same way as Rooney while Spurs splash out on uh Darren Bent. I think we got the better deal on our forward

Now we probably need a winger or two and we are set for next season. We didn't play badly Dan, we just didn't take our chances. Silva does that, Cesc starts adding to the tally and we are set for a title challenge. Remember we got to Carling Cup final so the potential is there. Arsene has won title after title, he has gone unbeaten, he has got us to many cup finals, all without splashing on big names. I don't know about you Dan but I would happily let Arsene continue to do what works and trust that he can get the players to fulfil their potential because if he does, we will dominate the next ten years.

Anonymous said...

Dan, If you have a season ticket I think you should hand it over to someone else. If not save yourself the money of buying tickets....If you are not looking forward to next season you don't really support the club do you? Football doesn't seem to be your sport from the comments you are making.

Anonymous said...

I honestly dont get why people are saying we are so far behind in the signings race. Am i the only one who notes we have pulled what i determine to be world class players thru the youth set up, or to speak about it the way papers do 'Starlets'. As an example would you like to sign a £30million Centre Back or keep Toure???? Do you want a £50million zidane or at a mear snip will Cesc do???? Can you tell me a better left back out there than Clichy????? Eduardo may have cost £6million but why is he less of a player than say Tevez???? It doesnt compute why people are fretting over the money spent, Arsene relys on his unique ability to identify players who fit into our style, ferguson and jol and Mourinho buy big names........ Its just what Arsenal do and to be honest recent titles CL finals and cup wins who are we to say Arsene doesnt know, too many armchair managers.

Mark said...

All this talk of us buying players is falling into the media myth.

As a team, when all fit and on form, no-one can touch us.

Man for man we probably have the big starting XI in the prem.

People might not know it, but Wenger will prove them wrong.

We will start well this season, our major purchase has been made before the start of pre season, and any right back or winger that we purchase may not be first choice anyway.

Anonymous said...

Denilson anyone???? cost next to f-all but i tell you for nothing its a damn sight better business than Owen Hargreaves, my opinion of course.......... Its so annoying that people keep missing the wood for the trees...... Was henry £12mil???? at the time he was signed the PL was a money no object league therefore £12mil back then was nothing when players were regularly fetching £30+million. Therefore after the ITV digital crash and the negative effect it had £6mil is comparable to TH14's £12mil signing and look how that turned out......... Trust Arsene (fingers crossed)

Anonymous said...

Buying star players one after another has never been the Arsenal way in my life time and more importantly never the Arsene Wenger way.

What was so wrong with our team last year? Did we create enough chances? I would say yes at home, though not necessarily away from home at all times. We also had a dreadful conversion rate - but with Van persie fit and Eduardo (7 goals in 12 internationals is more telling of his class than 35 goals in Croatian league) we should score more. Also Rosicky was in his first season last year and I expect him to progress much like Pires.

I would say we were weak defensively at times, but we have two world class centre backs and in Djourou great potential. With the african nations this year we will need one more class defender.

We are v strong in centre midfield with Cesc, Gilberto, Diaby and Denilson. Potentially weaker on the wings by a fit walcott may be played more often.

So what do we need? One defender and possibly a wide man - we are not far away from being capable of competing for the highest prize. If we come third next year it also won't becessarily be a disaster.

Isaiah said...

hi guys,i just laugh at some of ur comments, who is better, what we lacked last season was a finisher, we got one right now, which team created more chances than arsenal? we have the players for that, in a single match, we created 28 chances and scored none, if Eduardo was there, he could have scored 15 of them, why this pannick? do u think we are going to buy some Eto'o, Tevez or who the hell they may call themselves, none is better than Rosicky when not injured, which of the top teams could have been 4th without their best strikers? keep cool guys, we will win the league or be runners up, trust me on that, we should buy to improve not to be increase in numbers, it shall be well, our back 4 is very tight, don't worry, Djourou and Sanderos, Van Persie and Eduardo the best forward to flourish in the EPL,

ian.bennell said...

The word on TH14's departure is, he is not, and will not, be a fully fit player again.
Apparently all the injured players had to return early for their scans.
A problem was identified in TH and the medical team advised that he should be sold.
Why would Barcelona buy a "crocked" player. Do the sums. The commercial return on all the TH14 shirts, would more than make up for their outlay. It might also explain why we did not put up much of a fight to hold on to him. Remember, he still had 3 years on his contract.

Goonerboy said...

Whether he'll be fully fit again or not, I've come round to the opinion that now was the best time to sell him. You have to wonder whether last season was an anomaly for him, or the sad beginning of a period of decline.

Anonymous said...

hey all u gooners out there listen up.
In Henry we had a player who could drive the fear of God into our opponents just by appearing on the on line-up. He could regularly score goals out of nothing.
Such a player is so important especially when playing against teams that put all their players behind the ball. Teams like Bolton and what we saw at PSV need a brilliant player to break the deadlock..and that's what Henry gave us.
In tevez, Etoo, Quaresma, Simao, or Valencia's Silva we can or could have gotten such a player again. In the squad as we have it right now only Rosicky and Van persie are capable of long range brilliant shooting though they seldom do it.
My choice for a left winger who can also fill up as a striker is PSV's Farfan. He has shown he can be relied on to hit 15 goals a season and would cost us in the range of 10 to 12 million pounds.

otherwise I agree with all those who predict a successful season for our dear gunners.cheers

vosti, Nairobi

Anonymous said...

hey all u gooners out there listen up.
In Henry we had a player who could drive the fear of God into our opponents just by appearing on the on line-up. He could regularly score goals out of nothing.
Such a player is so important especially when playing against teams that put all their players behind the ball. Teams like Bolton and what we saw at PSV need a brilliant player to break the deadlock..and that's what Henry gave us.
In tevez, Etoo, Quaresma, Simao, or Valencia's Silva we can or could have gotten such a player again. In the squad as we have it right now only Rosicky and Van persie are capable of long range brilliant shooting though they seldom do it.
My choice for a left winger who can also fill up as a striker is PSV's Farfan. He has shown he can be relied on to hit 15 goals a season and would cost us in the range of 10 to 12 million pounds.

otherwise I agree with all those who predict a successful season for our dear gunners.cheers

vosti, Nairobi

Anonymous said...

hey all u gooners out there listen up.
In Henry we had a player who could drive the fear of God into our opponents just by appearing on the on line-up. He could regularly score goals out of nothing.
Such a player is so important especially when playing against teams that put all their players behind the ball. Teams like Bolton and what we saw at PSV need a brilliant player to break the deadlock..and that's what Henry gave us.
In tevez, Etoo, Quaresma, Simao, or Valencia's Silva we can or could have gotten such a player again. In the squad as we have it right now only Rosicky and Van persie are capable of long range brilliant shooting though they seldom do it.
My choice for a left winger who can also fill up as a striker is PSV's Farfan. He has shown he can be relied on to hit 15 goals a season and would cost us in the range of 10 to 12 million pounds.

otherwise I agree with all those who predict a successful season for our dear gunners.cheers

vosti, Nairobi

Eamonn said...

Still plenty of tip to unveil another couple of signings.
With regard to the 20 odd points we have to catch up on.
I definitly think that 10-15 of thos points were down to loosing our 2 best strikers while at the same time adapting to our new surroundings.
Come on boys how many times did we really deserve to loose?
Who out played us for the 3 points?
I don't think it was more that 3-4 times.
So we're not 20 points worse its just that we weren't strong enough in the first place to win it last year but the when you add the effects of the other 2 exceptional circumstances we were fucked.

Dong Zhou said...

Anon 12:53, a player like Henry can be both a blessing and a curse. A blessing for the ability to do something magic (I think Van Persie has the potential to do it) and win games for you. Henry at his best was an example of this but there is a downside. The player can become too big, destroying the confidence of others by accident, the players just keep passing him the ball even when there are better options. Henry may never be the same player he was and sometimes last season, we looked better without him. Time to let the little seedlings grow, they may not have the star quality as such but it could make them a better team.

Sam said...

The key thing for Arsenal this coming season is not playing transfer top trumps with Manure et al, we never have and do not need to - The key thing will be to NOT concede the first goal....!By defending better we will release the pressure from the attacking element of our game. This season we already have a better balanced strike force, If we learn to defend better as a unit and keep clean sheets everything else will take care of itself...Arsene is acutely aware of this and resolving this problem is more important than any "Super signing"

vinagunner said...

invest in the team! invest in the team!! invest in the team!!!!

YAWN!

11(!) players: lehman, kolo, eboue, gilberto, gallas, hleb, rosicky, eduardo, freddie, adebayor, rvp are all key players in their national reams.

then you have cesc, diaby, bendtner regularly representing their nations.

knocking on the door: denilson, clichy, flamini, walcott, hoyte.

we dominated most games and created loads of chances last term. we had bad og long terms injuries on key players.

the thing about titi has been pointed out by some others, so i'll not be dwelling on it. but think about it: do you REALLY want to see titi slamming the pitch, sending nasty looks at team mates, hanging with his head, making negative comments IN THE NEXT 3 YEARS?!

now get your head out of your arse and grow up! stop being a moaner!

Nathan said...

I don't think we need a whole set of changes, but i think another winger is def unless Wenger is going to change formation, which I don't think he's going to do.

If we do evaluate last season, the defeats at Liverpool, Bolton and Sheff Utd are games where we were outclassed or just didn't turn up on the day.

If Eduardo can adjust and you have to think that the composure (that's what Adebayor, Aliadiere, Baptista lack) he has in front of goal is something that should stay with him, whatever the league.

I have always wondered that if it was possible to have a real team like a computer game, where you put a finisher in a team with so much creativity and he could score goals for fun.

Eduardo did score those goals for a team, not as good as ours but, obviously didn't have to face as many good defenders.

What is obvious though, is a striker with good movement, positioning, finishing and composure, who is just loves scoring would score a bucket load for us, this is very possible next season.

I believe, we will cruise 4th from the spuds, possible 3rd depending on how well Torres does, but, I don't think we have a chance of the title.

If we can win a cup, go further in the CL and get closer points wise to the top, i think its progress, would love us to win the FA cup as I think thats possible.

Can't see past Man Utd, its their title to lose. I'll still have a tenner on us at 12/1 though!

kalahari blues said...

Hey gooners,
The sound of silence has a sweet deadly ring to it. Quiet one moment, then one swift move and its all over. I look forward to rename Eduardo Elcobra. Martin the deadly double barralled pgym. Sound good. May the silence reign adn may we discover ourselves in silence.

Anonymous said...

Ìts scary I think fans are relying too much on "Dudu" to score goals at will this coming season. I hope we all give him a chance to bed in first.

Like many have said, we still need a free scoring midfielder and a strong CB. With Toure and Eboue going on ACN duty, God forbid if any other key player has an injury in November, then we are F***ed.
I'm sure another signing will be announced b4 the window closes. I just hope we could sign Tevez/Huntelaar, a freescoring winger and a centre back