Aaaah, I love the smell of napalm in the morning. Not that we get much of it here in Middle England. Well, sort of just north of Middle England really. That’s what happens when you get sucked into the transfer vortex. Insanti. I don’t care if Cazorla turns out to be more elusive than Park; I just want him to sign because I can have a couple of seasons of fun with the name and puns.
It won’t be long to wait either. The puns and the signing, if reports are to be believed. Did we get this far with Juan Mata last summer? I can’t recall there being flights booked for him to come to London and have a medical. Not for Arsenal, anyway. Presuming of course that Yann M’vila’s tent can be moved off the treadmill. Ah, the salutory warning arrives. We’ve been here before, we’ll be here again.
I know that the two cases are slightly different – OK I don’t know that they are and frankly I cannot see any difference between the two, save for the financial plight that Malaga find themselves in. Rennes have a proper, bona fide, certified Sugar Daddy; one intent on having a well-run club. The Andaluz club had to happen at some point; fake sheikh’s or at least ones who do not care for football and when things are not done their way, taking the highway out of town, leaving the footballing hopes of a city in tatters. Malaga will survive, in what form is not yet known with more brinkmanship from potential purchasers but the pitfalls of wanting money – any money – to arrive at the club are in plain sight.
For Cazorla, the chance to play in the Champions League and potentially win trophies, it represents too good an opportunity to miss. For Arsenal, the signing would strengthen the squad without doubt. Cazorla is versatile, more than a back-up plan in case someone leaves. It represents ambition, a desire to strengthen the squad, to enable a group of maturing players to challenge for trophies. Ricky (@GeezyPeas) hit the nail on the head yesterday,
Forget using who we’ve signed to justify ambition. We are ‘The Arsenal’ where ambition shouldnt be questioned.
Yet we always seemed surprised when Arsenal sign good players. Especially when they are relatively expensive. That may not apply to Cazorla where the fee has been strongly rumoured to be lower than the £17m or so reported in this morning’s press. With Malaga’s debt believed to be twice that, such generosity cannot be expected; even desperation has its limits.
What does Cazorla mean for Arsenal, in broader terms of activity this summer? To begin with, I think his signing would scotch any deal for Sahin. Too many attacking midfielders spoil the broth. There are only so many players who can pass the ball around the box without taking a shot. The Spaniard’s versatility offers so many options across the midfield that signing another creative player strains the senses.
Talks are ongoing with Theo Walcott’s advisors – and Arsène is rumoured to be holding talks today with the player – which hints at progress, doors remaining open rather than ajar. I still believe he will sign a new contract at the club; either that or he has seen the reaction Robin van Persie received with his announcement and is playing an altogether more canny game. If he goes, yes, Cazorla is insurance and Sahin makes sense as a signing. Bear in mind the ultimate loser in the Turkish international joining appears to be Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and I cannot envisage a scenario where Arsène would ‘kill’ his career.
A statement is expected from Malaga today on their whole situation and it seems inconceivable that they will not refer to Cazorla speculation in those circumstances. If the statement is made…hope lives or dies in this instant world in which we live.
Elsewhere, Emmanuel Frimpong is having to reassess the pricing of his clothing line following the FA fine of £6k for his Twitter indiscretion. Frimpong called it an ‘expensive month’; the master of the understatement indeed. Robin van Persie apparently has signed for Juventus already according to an Italian agent who has been referred to as a ‘mover and shaker’; St Vitus Dance might be another explanation for that. A shame that the Turin club is in all sorts of disarray at the moment. A shame for the story since it puts all sorts of holes in it.
Alex Song and Marouane Chamakh are apparently ‘outcasts’ at Arsenal now. I know, I know, I shouldn’t have continued reading the story but Charlie Dubuck in this morning’s Daily Express appears to know nothing about the club whatsoever and just for Song being termed an ‘outcast’, it is worth reading. It brought a smile to my face.