Divination by training bibs never really worked so maybe divination by being on the plane to Singapore will be more productive. It works to a certain extent. Chuba Akpom impressed in Belgium last year and Sint-Truiden agreed on a £2m deal for his services; I hope it works out for him.
Others are less fortunate. Carl Jenkinson may have thought ‘new boss, new chance’; it’s turned out ‘meet the new boss, same as the boss’. Similar thoughts might be running through the minds of Joel Campbell and Jeff’s minds.
The latter in particular must wonder what the future holds. Is he set for another loan spell? Maybe he looks back in Angers, I hear you say. Has Unai Emery seen enough in training and the two friendlies to know his mind about the player? Certainly, it doesn’t look good for him in this instance.
He’s one of eight whose contracts expire next summer. Huss Fahmy is in for another busy time. Directed by the input of the rest of the management team, he’s the negotiator. Goodwill and enthusiasm for the new regime built with swift action but how long will that last if a key player – Ramsey – holds the club over a barrel once again?
I doubt it impacts Unai Emery’s standing, but for Gazidis, it’s an issue. He is the link to last season’s farcical situations with Sanchez and Özil. Maybe the stories linking him to Milan will gather pace now they successfully appealed their ban from the Europa League?
Not that I’d expect him to leave Arsenal this season, having fought so hard to gain power. However, another problematic negotiation with a star player will damage confidence in his management of the club. Is Junior getting ready to parachute into the hot-seat if Ivan leaves?
Make Him An Offer He Can’t Refuse
I flit from being concerned about Ramsey’s situation to a shrug of the shoulders, believing it is what it is. He is a marmite player and some won’t shed a tear if he departs. It would be a mistake to let him leave, but Arsenal are in a weak position yet again.
Contracts are something the club must resolve but it takes time. Returning to the Champions League helps, as well as challenging for the title. A successful club rarely has contract issues with players although Manchester City look like they are about to with Raheem Sterling. You can’t say it never happens, just that it rarely does.
We’ve suffered an endless stream of contract issues since moving to the Emirates. Henry left after one season, Cesc, van Persie, Sanchez, Özil, to name but a few. As a club, we’re on the backfoot with the ‘stars’ and are struggling to find some equilibrium.
We can’t force players to sign nor can we force them to negotiate. The only ‘weapon’ for the club is selling a player but if one is reluctant to negotiate, they want that anyway.
There’s no sense that Ramsey wants out; he’s keeping his options open with the lack of pronouncements. Will a question be asked at the next press conference he attends? More to the point, will anyone push on it once he’s got the bland deflection out of the way?
With a new boss in place, you can’t blame a player for waiting to see if there is any change. Is success as far away as ever or is it just around the corner, a couple of transfer windows away? Form is the answer but form is deceptive. As quickly as embarking on a good run, we can fall into old ways.
A Sign! A Sign!
The question of whether we sell Ramsey before the window closes is answered by his inclusion in the squad travelling to Singapore. If there was the chance of him leaving, he wouldn’t be travelling. Indeed, I think it would be done and dusted by now.
As much as the 9th August deadline leaves Premier League clubs vulnerable to losing cash on subsequent sales, it also puts pressure on overseas suitors to buy early. If an English club can’t land a replacement, there’s no way they will sell unless they want to entice supporter unrest out of its’ slumber early.
More to the point in this case, Arsenal will be content to wait until January to sell. However, I still think he is going to renew. Let the results be the judge of that.