Did I say “Fixes”? Depends on your definition of fixing. Democracy is like two hyenas and a lamb deciding what’s for dinner. They say the minority have their say, the majority have their way. The Premier League have gone and done a “Brexit” with other European associations thinking “Those fellas are sniffing the carpet again”. Of course Arséne Wenger was at the front of the pack egging on 13 of his colleagues to vote with him for the move. A baffling move to stop buying players early, but let the rest of Europe shoot fish in a barrel and pick your players at will for another three weeks. Of course Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola are throwing a hissy fit.
I’m still scratching my head on this one. Yes, it makes sense, but only if everyone plays ball. A club like Arsenal that is struggling to even get key players to renew contracts will just take their transfer window mediocrity to a whole new level. I had to do a double take the other day when Ivan Gazidis was quoted as saying “We’ve had a very successful transfer window and are ready to challenge for the title”. We’re still struggling to figure out which Arsenal will turn up for matches, let alone beat our hoodoo at the Bet 365 Stadium. Ivan must have a very serious carpet in his plush office.
Little Boys, Reincarnations and Trophy Dreams
You know the script. They leave us, it feels funny seeing them in another team’s shirt, and then they open their mouth at the press conference. For Robin Van Persie it was “the little boy in him who had always wanted to play for that lot”; Cesc Fabregas was the prodigal son returning home while for Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, it was a more reincarnation-esque; “I wanna be Steven Gerrard” sort of thing. Ever wondered why we’ve struggled to find our Patrick Vieira and Thierry Henry reincarnates? I wonder who Sead would like to be when he grows up.
You can never know with Arsenal. Kylian Mbappe admits he met and had discussions with Wenger this summer about coming to arsenal. That’s a country mile from the “I wanna be Thierry Henry” press conference. We couldn’t even pull off a Thomas Lemar ‘smash and grab’ with a £92 million last-minute bid. I’m just intrigued how we’ll handle a transfer window that closes on August 9th next summer. Perhaps our Ivan considers these discussions a successful part of our transfer business.
Fat? Who’s Fat?
The former Chilean Under 20’s boss insists Alexis Sanchez is fat and out of shape. I suppose there’s a reason for the pre-season, but with the way Alexis plays for Chile every summer – it seems that way – you do wonder whether he’ll ever have a proper pre-season at Arsenal. Fat or not, he needs to now focus on Arsenal for the next few months at least. Wenger is confident he will, but there’s no telling what the Chilean’s reaction will be after missing his move to Manchester City.
You would hope that he’s professional enough, that he’s proud enough to maintain his high standards, as well as understanding that he has to earn his salary by applying himself for the good of the team.
You also hope that Wenger comes to his senses and puts our best team on the pitch. His penchant for playing square pegs in round holes is hurting the team. A triumvirate of Ozil, Alexis and Lacazette up front has to be given a chance to flourish. That also means he has to fix our soft-bellied midfield that has already cost us 6 points and nearly cost us 8 if it wasn’t for super sub Olivier Giroud. And if it’s not too much trouble, it would also help if he plays Kolasinac in his rightful position at left wingback.
Of Cherries and Fruit Cakes
If last season is anything to go by, Arsenal has shown that they’re capable of operating like a dodgy fruit cake when you give them a chance. When the fourth game of the season is a “must win” game against Bournemouth, you wouldn’t be wrong in asking “When did the rain start beating us?”. Ordinarily, 3 points against the Cherries at home should be routine business, but these are times that have nothing routine about them. We cannot afford to be 9 points behind the leading pack four games in.
It doesn’t help that we’re just back from an international break. It also doesn’t help that we’re still licking our wounds from the hiding we got at Anfield two weeks ago. The whole team need to redeem themselves. You’d hope that they’ve had enough time to reflect on the cluster Foxtrot of a start to the season. The only talking that’s needed is on the pitch. I’d take a mauling of Bournemouth, but that would be greedy. The object of the exercise is 3 points, whatever way it comes.
Have a great weekend good people.