Tag Archives: felipe melo

Benzema? Ribery? What Next, Messi to Arsenal?

 Concerning Arsenal

It’s time for your daily dose of transfer speculation. Today’s menu includes such interesting stories as “Arsenal in for Cana” and “Villa after Arsenal’s Senderos“. These come as a bit of a relief, after we were bombarded with horribly ill thought out articles linking us with Karim Benzema and Franck Ribery. The best of them all was of course the “Arshavin set to leave Gunners for Barcelona” story, which made me tear up.

A possible Arsenal target...

A possible Arsenal target...

The first story is the product of Felipe Melo signing a extended contract with Fiorentina. It’s disappointing news for gunners fans, but realistically he was always out of our price range. Cana is much more likely from a financial viewpoint.  He offers similar skills as Melo and is probably more defensively minded. So far only Hamburg from Germany have made a bid for him, and here are some reasonably new quotes from him:

“The door remains open for a departure, even with three years remaining on my contract.”

“I will talk with my family and my representatives. It will then depend on what I want to do.

“Of the possible destinations in the future, England and Germany are the two leagues that attract me the most.”

If we signed Cana it would be a near perfect summer, assuming everyone else stayed. He could be the “missing link” in Arsenal’s midfield puzzle.

Senderos could be on his way out of North London...

Senderos could be on his way out of North London...

Onto Senderos, who is likely going to be one of two defensive departures this summer, along with Sylvester.  I feel that he would be a loss to the club, and selling him to a possible top four contender is not good business in my opinion. If he must be sold, Italy or France would be better destinations. With rumours of signing Serdar Tasci growing, it is almost a sure bet that Senderos will be playing for a new club before the start of the season.

In other news, Arsenal have unveiled their new third kit for next season. It’s white and it looks delightfully average. At least you won’t see much of it…

There has been some serious changes in the reserves today. Eight players have been released and four have been given professional contracts.

The following players have been released:

  • Amaury Bischoff
  • Rui Fonte
  • Anton Blackwood
  • James Dunne
  • Abu Ogogo
  • Paul Rodgers
  • Rene Steer
  • Vincent van den Berg

The following players were given professional contracts:

  • James Shea
  • Luke Ayling
  • Craig Eastmond
  • Cedric Evina

The eight players released were all expected to leave this summer. No surprises there. The four players given professional contracts come as a bit of a surprise, but are definitely well deserving of their contracts. This is after being apart of the FA Youth Cup and Academy League winning under – 18 team.

Thats all for today. Thanks for Reading!!

Please remeber to leave a comment!!

Walcott Fails to Impress, Transfer News, and Reserves…

Concerning Arsenal

Poor Theo Was Never Given An Opportunity To Influence The Game...

Poor Theo Was Never Given An Opportunity To Influence The Game...

Today is a sad day for England Supporters. Theo Walcott, Kieran Gibbs, and The Under 21’s were humiliated 4 – 0 by their German counterparts. Walcott was anonymous for most of the match. He hardly contributed to the game at all. He had a few chances, but England’s style of play was different from “The Arsenal Way,” which plays to Theo’s strengths. A quick striker was not what England needed, and with the defence hoofing the ball up the field, Walcott wasn’t given much of a chance.

 
Gibbs played a solid game. Nothing you could find wrong with him. He stood out positively in an English back four that conceded goals left, right, and center. Luckily, now that this tournament is over they will have some much deserved rest ahead of pre-season, which is getting closer and closer.

In other news, former gunner Gilberto Silva has encouraged his Brazil team-mate, Felipe Melo, to make the move to North London:

“We heard rumours and he asked me. I said it’s a great club and if he’s interested he should go without thinking,”
“He is exactly what Arsenal need, a powerful player with quality. If they got him it would be great because he is a player they need at the moment.”

I could see this deal happening, but it seems like for the money we’re spending, we could get Veloso or Inler at a better price. Maybe with the leftover cash, we could get someone like Serdar Tasci, who says that he is interested in joining Arsenal:

“I have the ambition to move clubs one day, but the time and circumstances have to be right for me,”
“I have to admit I’m flattered that clubs like Arsenal, AC Milan and Juventus have had their eye on me in the past.”

“But I’m not getting carried away with this. I’m focused on Stuttgart and looking to return to action following my knee injury. I’d love to play in the Champions League this season.”

Great, another injury prone player at the Arsenal. You’re either French, or you’ve got to be hurt half the season. Strange criteria for a football manager.

A last little bit of news, several youth and reserve players are going to be leaving this summer. Below, I’ve summarised who it could, be as well as next seasons possible Carling Cup team, and possible candidates for a loan.
 

Concerning Reserves and Loans

The following reserve players are set to leave Arsenal this summer:

Dagenham have signed 19 year old defender Abu Ogogo.
Jonas Rasmussen has been released and is set to sign for Viborg F.F
Paul Rodgers is undergoing a trial at Northampton in an attempt to earn a contract with them.

For more detailed information check out Young Guns.

None of these players are a real loss to the club, and there are easily younger and more talented players ready to step up from the under – 18’s.

While on the subject of Arsenal reserves, I thought I’d mention the Carling Cup. This is my prediction for next season’s Carling Cup team, which will see many new players, and possibly Eduardo and Rosicky, as a way of getting non vital games under their belts.

My starting XI:

Keepers: Fabianski (or Mannone)
CB: Nordveit and Bartley (or Ayling)
FB: Gibbs, Hoyte (or Gilbert/Traore)
CM: Ramsey, Randall (or Emmanuel-Thomas, Coquelin)
Wingers: Merida, Wilshire (or Lansbury)
Strikers: Vela, Simpson (or Barazite)

Players like Bentdner, Song, and Djourou will all be moved up to full first team duty. This will leave gaps in the defence and up front that could be filled by Youth Cup winners Bartley and Ayling, or on – loan CB Nordveit. Replacing Bentdner will probably be Jay Simpson. The bench will consist of the majority of the FA Youth Cup Winning squad.

Doesn’t watching a team of under 21’s destroy a Premier League team like Wigan, give you complete satisfaction? It’s always a pleasure watching Wilshere, Vela, and many others being given a chance.

I’ve also included a list of players who may be leaving, or I feel should be leaving, as well as who to expect to go out on loan after the Carling Cup is won:

There have been hints that several of these reserve players may be sold/released:
Amaury Bischoff
Rui Fonte
Abu Ogogo
Paul Rodgers
Anton Blackwood
James Dunne
Jonas Rasmussen
Vincent van den Berg
Rene Steer

Take your pick out of any of these players who could be loaned out after the Carling Cup:
Aaron Ramsey
Nacer Barazite
Francis Coquelin
Jay-Emmanuel Thomas
Gavin Hoyte
Henri Lansbury
Fran Merida
Kerrea Gilbert
Mark Randall
Jay Simpson

Thanks for Reading!!

Please Leave Your Comments and Opinions!

Theo Walcott Given a Chance to Star for England, + Transfer News

Concerning Arsenal

  • Theo Walcott is set to start as the lone striker in England’s Under – 21 Final against Germany.
  • Cesc Fabregas wins a bronze medal with Spain in the Confederations Cup.
  • Arsenal are reportedly interested in re-signing Alex Hleb from Barcelona for a cut price.
  • Marouane Chamakh is certain he will be leaving Bordeaux this summer.
  • Robin van Persie reaffirms his commitment towards Arsenal.
  • New links to Serdar Tasci and Mehmet Topçu, both young prospects
Theo's chance to shine...

Theo's chance to shine...

I’ll start today with the news that Theo Walcott is going to start for England Under 21’s tomorrow as the lone striker. He’s not familiar in this position and it will be interesting to see how he copes with the pressure of a Final. I honestly don’t expect him to be extremely effective up front and on his own, but with his pace he can give any defender nightmares.
England vs. Germany in a final! How exciting. This just proves how dull the summer is getting. At least it’s an opportunity for England to win some Silverware, and also a chance for Walcott and Gibbs to show off their Arsenal educations.

The other pointless competition, the Confederations Cup, has been won by Brazil after a come from behind victory against the Americans. Spain comes in third after defeating South Africa. This means two things: first Cesc Fabregas gets the break he needs and deserves, and second, Felipe Melo has time to speak with Arsenal about a move to London.

Another name being mentioned as a possible Arsenal Target is Alex Hleb. Yes, you heard me right, I said Alex Hleb. The same Alex who begged to leave London last summer, now wants to crawl back. Does Arsene take him back? For a cut price, near half of what we sold him for, that’s worth considering. He would be great as a squad player. Wait, he’s not happy with that. Ok, next…

Since I’m now on the topic of transfers, I’d might as well mention that Marouane Chamakh has stated that he expects to leave Bordeaux this summer even though the club have apparently not received a formal offer from an English club:

“Although I have not decided where my future is going to be, it is clear that I will leave the club.

“My first objective is to play in England. I know there are some German and Italian clubs who have contacted the club, but I want to play in the Premier League in a more exciting championship.”

From one striker to another, Robin van Persie has confirmed that he will be staying at arsenal, and aims to be the best while he’s here:

I see the potential at Arsenal. We have to do it. One fact which aggravates me is that in the five years I’ve been at Arsenal, we’ve won exactly the same number of trophies as I did at Feyenoord – ONE – that’s not enough. When I arrived here, Arsenal were winning trophies for fun. But, if everyone is fit, we have a heck of a team and it’s up to me to ensure we go out and win these trophies.”

“I’m not in negotiations with any other club – just Arsenal. I want to become the best player in the world. My career will only be a success when I consider myself the best. Anything less won’t do.”

Next year is big for RvP. He needs to stay healthy and on form if we even want to be considered as title challengers. Good for him to stop the rumours before they start, and he’s even ambitious! This could mean big things for Arsenal…

Finally, Arsenal have been linked to two young(ish) prospects in Serdar Tasci and Mehmet Topçu. Check them out for yourselves. One is a 22 year defender at a german club, the other, a 16 year old CM from Turkey.

Thanks for reading!!

Please leave your comments and opinions!!

 

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Under – 21’s, Arshavin, The Other Samir, Melo and Henri Lansbury

  

Concerning Arsenal (In Brief)

  • England Under 21’s beat Sweden 3 – 3 (5-4 pen) with Walcott and Gibbs each scoring their spot kicks.
  • Andrei Arshavin has sacked his agent Dennis Lachter, and will now represent himself.
  • Samir Carruthers, (A member of our under – 16’s) has decided to move to Aston Villa instead of signing a new contract.
  • Felipe Melo is going to wait until after the Confederations Cup final with Brazil, before deciding his future.
  • Scunthorpe United are interested on taking Henri Lansbury back on loan next season.

Concerning England Under – 21’s

Future England Player

Future England Player

England took the lead in the first half, but the Swedes came back to level in the second, forcing the match to go to extra time and penalties. Walcott and Gibbs both converted their spot kicks, in a penalty shoot-out which England eventually won. Unfortunately, Joe Hart, Gabriel Agbonlahor, and Frazier Campbell will all miss the final against Italy or Germany. Theo Walcott and Kieran Gibbs look almost certain to be included in the stating eleven.

 

Concerning Andrei Arshavin

Andrey Arshavin

Who can forget the game at Anfield? Four!!!!

Surprisingly, our number 23 has fired his agent Dennis Lachter, and has opted to represent himself. This is a strange move considering it was Lachter who helped him in his transfer to Arsenal in January. Andrei said:

“Recently I sent a formal letter to Dennis Lachter, which said that I do not want him to continue to represent me and that I will act on my own behalf,”
“This is no way associated with my Arsenal contract. On the contrary, I want to express my deep gratitude for Lachter’s help in moving to the English club.

“But now I am having operational problems and Dennis, who has a newborn son, lives in Israel and cannot always be close to me, so it is easier to solve all these problems myself.”

Good riddance, now we’ll have one less agent to start exit rumours this transfer window, and probably the next few. With Arshavin stating that he would like to end his career back at Zenit, you can’t help to but get a feeling like another “transfer saga” is just around the corner. Maybe firing Lachter will make up for all the money he lost from taxes in the UK? It’s a thought eh! (Canada eh!)

 

Concerning Samir Carruthers

Under – 16 winger Samir Carrthers has decided to leave the Arsenal Academy and move to Aston Villa. He obviously isn’t good enough or we would have put up a fight to keep him. He seems to think he will get more first team chances at Villa and that they have better youth facilities. You have to be joking! We have the best academy in England and no other top club relies so much on youth players. Good luck Samir, but next time don’t cover up your lack of talent with a “I’m too good for Arsenal” story.
 

Concerning Felipe Melo

Melo, who is currently on international duty with Brazil at the Confederations Cup, will wait till after the final go decide his future. Apparently he is happy at Fiorentina, but doesn’t rule out a move to London. He would be a great addition to the squad, but for 15 Million Pounds, you have to wonder about better options. How about Gallas + cash, seeing as he wants to leave Arsenal anyway. They’re in the market for a defender, and Gallas only has a few good years left in him, were as Senderos, who they are reportedly interested in, and has tons of future potential.
 

Concerning Henri Lansbury

Back out on loan?

Back out on loan?

Scunthorpe United have expressed interest in signing Henri back on loan for next season:

“We have asked Arsenal the question about Henri”

“And my understanding is they would be quite happy for him to come back here if they decide to release him on loan again. Arsenal, Chelsea and West Ham have all looked closely at what we do with players we take on loan.

“But as far as Henri is concerned, he will train with the first team squad at Arsenal for the first month when the players report back for the new season. Then the club will make a decision as to whether he goes back out on loan again.”

I have no objection to him returning to Scunthorpe. He played well during his last loan spell, scoring several times. For a while, it didn’t seem like Henri would ever make it big, with all the spot lights being focused on Wilshere, but he’s changed my opinion and he was even included in the FA Youth Cup final squad. I would be not at all surprised if Henri became a first team member in the next two or three years.

Thanks for reading!!

Please leave your comments and opinions!!

Cesc, Ade, and The Under – 21’s. “The Usual”

Concerning Cesc Fabregas

 

I bet if you called his house his machine would say "commited to Arsenal, and please leave a message"
 

The Captain has again had to deny reports from the media suggesting he will be moving to Spain any time soon:

 

“I’m not sure how many times I need to talk directly about my commitment to Arsenal as I continue to say the same thing over and over again, but it appears that every time I have spoken to the Spanish media recently, my words have bounced back to England, leaving question marks about my future.

“So, for anyone who is unclear or may have misunderstood what my position is, let me make myself absolutely crystal clear. I am wholeheartedly committed to Arsenal and my future lies with this great Club.

“It is a fact that we have not won a trophy for four years and yes, I am angry about that, but that anger stems from the deep deep desire I have to win things with Arsenal. I care about this Club and believe in this team. I am proud to captain this team and proud to wear the shirt. It really upsets me when people express my thoughts otherwise. The spirit in this squad is fantastic and we have the ability and mentality to compete on all fronts for silverware. Make no mistake, we are focussed and determined to show that we are capable of achieving great things together.”

 

This is reassuring to hear, because if Fabregas were to leave, many others would follow. Giving him the armband was clearly a strategic move by Wenger to fight of interest from Barcelona and Madrid, and it seems to be working. We all except him to end his career there, and if were lucky, we will see him stay for another 5 – 8 years. This is dependant of course on the clubs ambitions, and the trophy cabinet. He also sounds like he’s getting a little desperate. There’s no harm in that. A little desperation would do this squad loads of good.

In other Fabregas related news, Spain has been knocked out of the Confederations Cup by underdogs USA. This gives him a chance to take a break before pre-season training, and might put an and to his exit rumours. At least for a few days…

Concerning Transfers

Emmanuel Adebayor; Any Buyers?

Emmanuel Adebayor; Any Buyers?

It seems like Adebayor is less likely to play for Arsenal next season, with every passing day. Milan are interested, as talks with Edin Dzeko haven’t made progress, and the clubs administrator, Adriano Galliani said:

“We are only looking for a forward, and our aim is Dzeko.

“If we fail to get Dzeko then (Sevilla striker) Luis Fabiano could be an alternative – as could Adebayor.”

Unfotunatly for us, if he were to leave, we may have to keep searching for a new target as Marouane Chamakh is apparently close to signing an extension with Bordeaux.

No news is good news? I have nothing to report involving Felipe Melo, which isn’t always a bad thing. The only other player we’ve been linked with is Sebastien Bassong, who would only fit in as a squad player anyway.

Concerning England Under – 21

Take it easy, just don't follow Bendtners example...

Take it easy, just don't follow Bendtners example...

Arsenal have to players representing England in the under – 21 Championship. One, being Kieran Gibbs, has performed extremely well, scoring two goals in the friendly against Azerbaijan. The other, being the highly rated Theo Walcott, who has underperformed and was even benched in one game. Recently he said:

“Of course I was angry to be left out of the Spain game. I took it out on the pitch and let my feet do the talking because I wanted to show what I can do coming off the bench.

“I wasn’t happy because I came here to play. The manager spoke to me afterwards and I spoke to him.

It’s sort of ironic that Arsene Wenger wanted Walcott not to participate in the Under – 21’s, and then he gets benched. At least when he’s a sub he’s not tiring himself ahead of pre-season. You do have to give him some credit for what he’s saying, because his participation in the tournament is almost like a favour to Stuart Pearce, the Under – 21 manager. I would be pissed too if i were in his shoes…

Thanks for reading!!

Your Comments, critiques, or suggestions are appreciated!!

Concerning Arsenal? Transfer Talk, Formations, and Who Can Forget About Phil Brown?

Concerning Myself

First off, I would like to introduce myself. I am a novice blogger with a passion for everything Arsenal. I live in far away Vancouver, Canada, but was born in London, and it is my dream to one day move back home to see the team that I love. I’ve only followed Arsenal since mid 2008 (just after the Birmingham game to be precise), so this Arsenal team is the only one I’ve known. Football in Canada is a rare thing, and Arsenal fans are even rarer.

Feel free to leave any comments or feedback after you’ve read my post.

Concerning Transfers

Thomas Vermaelen; Latest Arsenal Transfer

Thomas Vermaelen; Latest Arsenal Transfer

As you will already know, Thomas Vermaelen, the 23 year old former Ajax defender, has signed for Arsenal for near 10 Million Pounds. This “solves” our backline issues and with Philip Senderos returning from Italy, we don’t look too bad. These two will add height to our defence, which we desperately need, as well as playing in a different style to Kolo and Gallas. Unfortunately, our chances of starting next season with 6 center-backs (Kolo, Gallas, Vermaelen, Senderos, Djourou, Silvestre) plus Song, is very slim. This is regardless of what Wenger says. I could see (and desperately hope) that it’s Silvestre who leaves, and if Gallas or Senderos were sold for the right price, who can complain?

Verdict:

Five center-backs = ideal.

Four center-backs = adequate.

Three center-backs + Silvestre = a lot of sleepless nights.

FBL-EUR-C1-FIORENTINA-LYON

Felipe Melo; Possible Arsenal Target

Now to the midfield. We’ve been heavily linked with Felipe Melo, the Brazilian defensive midfielder from Fiorentina. He’s aggressive (racking up over 12 yellows card last season), as well as expensive. It would mean another transfer in the “Arshavin bracket” which I doubt will happen unless we sell Adebayor.(Patience please I‘ll get there) It would surprise me a little if we signed him, especially since rumours of us bidding for Miguel Veloso and Gokhan Inler have resurfaced. Personally, I’d like Lorik Cana from Marseille but I don’t see it happening.

Up front, Robin Van Persie has signed or is near signing a contract extension (Depending on who you believe). As for Adebayor, he’s been doing the usual…need I say more? We can expect to see him playing in Italy or Spain at the beginning of next season. Our only consolation is that if it’s Real or Milan, we’ll have enough cash to sort out the midfield and have some leftover to get a decent replacement for him. Many believe that Bordeaux’s striker, Marouane Chamakh, is heading to North London. I don’t rate him any higher than Eduardo, but with the two of them, and not forgetting Bendtner and RvP, we should be fine.

Concerning Tactics

Next year we will have a minimum of four new options for Arsene to integrate (back) into the team. Eduardo and Rosicky will be fully fit, (do u remember hearing that last year?) and we will have Vermaelen and a hopefully a new CM. Vermaelen is easy, but it’s his attacking players that need some shuffling around. He recently said:

“Next season we will play the formation and system that most suits the players and the balance of the team.

“That means it’s not rigid. It can evolve throughout the season, depending on circumstances and personnel.

“If you play with Theo Walcott for example, you are more tempted to go for three midfielders because Theo is more of a forward than a midfielder in a 4-4-2.”

Next year we can expect to see a 4-3-3 being our regular formation. This will have any out of Cesc, Nasri, Rosicky and our potential new CM playing the first three, and Ade(if he stays), RvP, Eduardo, Bendtner, Arshavin Walcott…and the list goes on, taking up the front three. Not too shabby, but I won’t go into much detail today.

Concerning Phil Brown

Now Who's Laughing?

Now Who's Laughing?

Justice for all! Yes, that’s what happens Mr. Brown when you make up random garbage about a club that has just knocked you out of the FA Cup. You accused Fabregas of spitting on your assistant? He was cleared by the FA. Then you call the referee “disgraceful”? That £ 2.500 fine does not do you justice. At least next year when you get relegated from the Premier League you’ll have Newcastle for company, and we’ll all have something to laugh about.

Until next time…

Thanks for reading, and yes, there is light at the end of the tunnel. Or at least we play Barnet in 24 days. Try and keep your sanity until then…

Also, any comments, critiques, or suggestions are appreciated!