Entries in Arsenal (1029)
Many Arsenal fans were hailing the emergence of a new team following their 2-0 victory over Liverpool at Anfield last Sunday. Cast your minds back to January 2007 and the Gunners fans were speaking in similar terms.
Arsenal have started this season a lot differently to last. After three games last year, the Gunners had conceded 10 goals already, including an embarrassing 8-2 defeat at the hands of Manchester United.
De Ja Vu does not often come as clear as Arsenal being in a perceived crisis having just sold their best players in the days building up to the new season, the accusations of a lack of ambition sounding like a broken record to Arsene Wenger now who has battled on for too long under the roof of strained resources and a sensible wage structure that, in the face of more affluent competition, renders trophies out of reach.
So the summer’s most tedious transfer saga is ending with Robin Van Persie set to a complete a move to Manchester United for what The Guardian reports as £23m. Within hours of the announcement, The Daily Mail reported that Barcelona representatives were in London to complete the signing of Alex Song.
It has been a long time in the making and threatened to engulf the entire transfer window, but on Wednesday night, the news filtered through that Manchester United had agreed a fee to sign Robin van Persie.
It has, by and large, been a successful summer thus far for Arsenal and Arsene Wenger. The Gunners’ lack of striking depth appears to have been solved by the additions of vastly experienced international forwards Lukas Podolski and Olivier Giroud, while almost everyone appears in agreement that the signing of Spanish midfield schemer Santi Cazorla is a superb one.
Rumours have been doing the rounds for weeks now that Fernando Llorente won’t be signing a new deal with Athletic Bilbao.
Ever since the creation of Europe’s ground-breaking Premier League that saw football announce its name on a global stage with record-smashing television deals being the order of the day, the sport has undergone a kind of unravelling megalomania that has seen it swell, in some cases, beyond its means and often beyond accessibility to the type of working-man supporter that were regularly found on the terraces before the commercial revolution set in.
As with every summer of Arsenal transfer activity, pre-season has been marred by rumblings of a contract dispute involving a major player. Following on from the lead of Samir Nasri and Cesc Fabregas before him in voicing their displeasure with a perceived lack of ambition in Arsene Wenger’s choice to use the Emirates coffers with frugality, this time round it is Robin Van Persie, scorer of 37 goals in his most recent season, to deny the Gunners his commitment to the cause as the Dutchman sees trophies and medals as a more attractive proposition.