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Should Arsenal Join The Costa Franchise ?

Today,a guest post from Muppet ( @MuppetGooner )

Here we go again, it’s that time of year where everybody gets to play championship manager and decide what reinforcements we need for the assault on the title in May. Costa, screams the Twitter arsenal massive, buy him, and we secure the title. Wenger laughs off this suggestion, claiming he would be an outlay of £145m. Now, I am a Wenger fundamentalist, but, like the Earth was created in 7 days claim, cannot help think that £145m is a stretch. Perhaps £80m, unless those rogue agents are making hideously more than usual.

So, do we join the Costa chorus ? To be honest, I know nothing about the guy. Haven’t even seen him play. He’s 6 ft 2 and bangs the goals in for Athletico Madrid. Now,  I might be completely wrong in my contrary opinion, but there are reasons for caution. For an outlay of £80m, Costa doesn’t guarantee success. Sure, he may increase our chances of winning the premiership, but does he win it for us ? Is he the best in the business ? Well – he’s maybe in the top 10 strikers in the world, but for the outlay, that does not compare with, say, Ozil, who is widely lauded as the best no 10 in the world, and has the pedigree, track record and age to prove it. We may do the deal, and I wouldn’t be against it if Wenger went ahead, but it seems to be as though he would present a financial risk. And our club is very cautious.

The “pundits” say we still need to strengthen. Two players is the accepted wisdom. This is high praise indeed, as traditionally we have needed a spine and more. Striker and one other is called for, but not sure in what position. Make no mistake, like dry or wet rot, the moaners will resurface when we lose, citing all the players we need. The strident call was for a DM, until Flamini came in. Before that, the “pundits” called for new centre backs.

This bloggers opinion? Julien Draxler would be nice. Joking aside, let’s give the manager a little credit eh ? Ramsey has come good, Mertesacker, heralded as a donkey in the english press, has come spectacularly good. Rosicknote, who should have been shipped out 3 years ago, according to the gloom-brigade, put Spuds to the sword at the age of 32. Get the idea ? Like some of those dormant stocks in your portfolio,  when the money starts gushing in, so it is with some of our squad players.  People scream for new incomings, but they ignore the potential of those we have. I am waiting for Wilshere to hit form and have a similar patch to Ramsey. Ox will be back. Gnabry, for an 18 year old, looks like he could be a monster. We’ve not had the opportunity to play Gnabry, Walcott, Ox and Ozil in one game yet. The opposition will require new pants at half time.

Of course, the specific concern is if Giroud is absent. Well – the candidates are Bendtner, Walcott, Podolski and Sanogo. People wrote off Podolski  after his lack of success before being subbed against Cardiff. But I would go for another bite of the cherry. So what if Podolski wasn’t sharp. We can always try him again.

Other positions ? We seem well stocked in midfield. Flamini, more streetwise after his stint in Milan and the excellent Arteta in front of the back 4. Cazorla, Rosicky, Wilshere, Ozil  and Ramsey is an embarrassement of riches. More power would be good – maybe Diaby will provide that in March. Defence ? No complaints there. It’s the best defence in the league, and possibly the best midfield as well.

The detractors say we need to strengthen further to reverse our recent poor performances against top 4 sides. This may be a point of view. Whilst we’ve been extraordinarily consistent in beating mid and bottom of the table opposition, we have not been great in recent head to heads versus Man U, City and Chelsea. We had unfortunate results against both Manchester sides. The Man U result, for me, was down to the absence of Mertesacker. If he was in the side, 1-0 would have been 0-0. The City result came after two tough fixtures and suspect refereeing. The Chelsea game indicated to me that we were able to play a disciplined and professional game against a side who looked highly dangerous on the counter attack. One can argue that “extra quality” would bridge this gap, but on the other hand, we may be able to do this by tapping into our unfulfilled potential within the squad. Nobody saw Ramsey become the best midfielder in the country this season, and who knows, someone else may become similarly unplayable. We may also just be on an upward swing, with more incremental improvement to come.

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131 comments on “Should Arsenal Join The Costa Franchise ?

  1. thanks aman
    the more reason the lads need to win the league.

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  2. and for the record…recognising the brilliance of a suarez dont mean we are trashign our boys..like you are insinuating

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  3. Well on a day of bad news at least the youngsters give us something positive to end with winning 6-0 at Peterborough.
    Daniel Crowley with two goals and four assist and chuba with a hat-trick and Maitland niles with the other goal.
    Would be nice if they could go all the way in the youth cup

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  4. I think Suarez is a quality player, but I don’t need to shit on Giroud and Theo in order to recognize his ability. Saying that the Chelsea defense laugh at Giroud and Theo, because you want Suarez in our team, is unnecessary.

    “and for the record…recognising the brilliance of a suarez dont mean we are trashign our boys..like you are insinuating”

    “ivanovic, luiz, terry …even that useless piece of meat cahill…they laugh when they see walcott and olivier …if they see luis they will start peeing themselves”

    Like I said, no need to shit on our players in order to big up that buck toothed asshole.

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  5. Hunter give it a rest, Suarez is a good player in an average team, which probably makes him stand out but he does not walk on water. He is still a despicable human being and I’m fed up of seeing you constantly bigging him up on an Arsenal blog. He is not an Arsenal player. If he ever becomes one, you can sing his praises to the sky, but for now we all know what you think, so enough already.

    I’m more concerned about the loss of Theo for 6 months, in fact I’m gutted for him and the team. It seems we just can’t catch a break.

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  6. Theo was studded two minutes before on the halfway line and went down in a heap. Nobody put the ball out (not even us): he struggled to rejoin the play, and then backtracked to defend which is when his major injury happened. If the ref (or linesman) had correctly called the studding, or if the spurs had put the ball out, or if we had when we finally had a chance he would probably still be alive and kicking.

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  7. The team that’s probably going to hurt even more in light of Theo’s absence is England. He is the only current England regular who can really do some damage in Brazil, the only player that can instill fear into the hearts of the opposition and well, he won’t be playing.

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  8. But the Ox might be Evil and scanning the club sick list I see he is back in full training this week and getting back to a competitive level – surely a welcome return

    And intriguingly I see the last mention on the man who never was Sanogo on 21/11 says ‘back in January’

    Well I never !

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  9. “ivanovic, luiz, terry …even that useless piece of meat cahill…they laugh when they see walcott and olivier …”
    Hunter,that is out of order and just plain wrong.

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  10. I agree with Passenal.

    Crushing blow for young Theo. Just as he seemed to be getting up a real head of steam. Yes it’s a blow for the squad as well, but it seems almost secondary at the moment.

    It would be crass to try and but a positive spin on such rotten news, however it’s worth bearing in mind that Arsenal got to their current lofty position in the league in his absence. I Just hope they go on and win the bloody thing (for him) now.

    I don’t know if this will force Arsene’s hand in the transfer window, or who he can get in if indeed anyone (Whatever the opposite of one of those self appointed “ITK” fellas on twatter is….that’s me. Not a f*cking clue). Might see the Podmeister as the answer to his prayers, or someone little bit stop-gap until the Summer. Could be little bit rabbit out of hat. One thing I am fairly certain of though…won’t be Suarez (Boat. Sailed).

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  11. Why evil? They have Ashley Young and James Milner.

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  12. When I saw that vicious stamp on Theo’s leg I knew he’d end up with the same or a different injury. It wasn’t called a foul of yet it should’ve been a red card:

    http://arsenalist.com/f/arsenal-vs-tottenham-fa-cup/walcott-s-foot-gets-stepped-on.html

    Retrospective action anyone? Nah, let’s talk about tw14 making a 2 nil gesture that threatened lives. You cunting scumbags. I hope karma catches you all.

    It would be amazing if Gnarbry, Ox, Sanogo, Poldodlski, Bendtner and Ryo find the necessary form and fitness, when required. I’d love to see Campbell the Costa Rican brought to his club during this window.

    I’m livid about Theo. Heal well.

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  13. Harry

    I’m gutted. Was hoping it was a strain, he could lose a half yard now, hopefully not.
    ****! But you are right, the wingless wonders coped and played so well without any serious Pace for a while.
    Any player in that kind of form, with those numbers, will be missed and it would be an exceptionally rare transfer that could plop straight into the PL and provide those numbers of goals and assists. There are players there to fill the gap in Gnabry and Chamberlain, I’d guess that the Ox is at least a month or more away from decent fitness – he was lucky he had a strain and not a tear, his return to action has to be to managed well in order to allow strength in the limb to be regained, and it will be. The Arsenal physios seem to know more then their critics (see Rosicky).
    So odds on for one or two more appearances for Gnabry in January.

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  14. So am I Fins. The injury Gods vomit on us once more.

    January is tough, to find someone little bit super super top top top quality, a player who can hit the ground running, someone who doesn’t need time to get adjusted to the Premier League. We create a shit load of chances, which is why Berbatov has been mooted as a stop-gap, and whilst I’m not entirely convinced by that suggestion myself (and Arsene has dismissed it outright…), I can perhaps see the wisdom in a temporary solution if AW feels we are light up front.

    Arsene may have had his roving eye on someone since the end of the summer, and agent Dick & Co could be tying up the loose ends as I type this here drivel. I don’t know (who’d have thunk it). I suspect though, a lot may rest on the form of the Pod, and Santi, who was brilliant on Saturday, which must be encouraging, as was the performance of young Gnabry. So, there are indeed plenty of options and possibilities. I’m actually quite fascinated to see what Arsene does.

    We’ll soon find out. This news is a huge set-back and personal disappointment for Theo, and I pray it doesn’t hinder him long term. As far as the squad goes though…No need to panic.

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  15. I am beyond sad. My favourite player etc. I have never met him and don’t know him, but he seems such a decent young man too. I really am so upset for him, for us, for England, for me (biaasc).

    But being pragmatic, and following the Gibbs/Monreal model, presumably we now spend a little extra to make the Draxler transfer happen now rather than July. Or whatever the other July plans really were, as I have no idea who or what Draxler really is, and even less idea whether he is being considered. But someone will come now.

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  16. There can’t be many many better ways to leave the field with injury, legendary scenes. Get well soon Theo.

    Goals for Akpom tonight 🙂
    I wouldn’t complain if he played before the next round of the FA Cup.

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  17. “I’m actually quite fascinated to see what Arsene does”

    Always.

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  18. In ACL surgeries.

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  19. Team selection for the derby was interesting. Like Mean Lean I’ve get no butterflies at the thought of Kosciely and Vermaelan at the back. Mean Lean points out that they haven’t played together much since the team have been playing with greater cohesion, and they’ve played well together in the past too. Vermaelan was out of sorts following his injury trials, he looks fine now. Problem is the other two have been playing like demons! They can’t play every game together, so I’ll get the opportunity to (hopefully!) enjoy the variations. From the beginning it has been hard to ignore what the BFG brings to the squad. The “panic buy” who like Monreal had been considered for a while strolled onto the pitch for the first time at Arsenal with more then fifty caps for Germany* under his belt.

    *Of late Germany have struggled at the back without the BFG

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  20. Thanks G69

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  21. No worries, I am just hoping he loses none of his pace and his career can go back to what it was before he popped his knee.

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  22. If every time a player was kicked or stamped on their anterior cruciate ligament ruptured then clubs would need much bigger squads

    Well the window is dead so far, other than Moyes running from target to target desperately, not a sniff of a real deal anywhere

    I am appalled

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  23. Been saying for a while now we need another fast winger but I thought it would be on the left. With Theos terrible news and the likelihood of Ryo going on loan all other players in the squad are ball players rather than out an out wingers and like to come inside. Even Benik, Cubba, and Serge can all play wide but their natural instinct is come central.

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  24. I was having a daydreaming moment and thinking about strikers and the accepted wisdom that you need one and that these rare beasts are born fully formed as true 9s. I then started thinking about the goals Ramsey has scored this season. If you saw a compilation video of them all and were told that he was a striker, rather than a midfielder, would you notice the difference? Imagine if his only job was to play in the final third ofthe pitch, and all the energy he normally expends in midfield were channeled into striking. Does he have the skill? Does he have the resilience? The eye for goal? The speed? Yes, yes, perhaps and maybe. Or is it silly to think outside of the box for an in the box solution?

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  25. Not silly at all Forever – if you are a good footballer, comfortable with the ball, with the agility to dribble in the box and hit a crisp shot their is no reason at all you cannot play as a striker. And while the charge has been made about others there is no suggestion that AR does not have a footballing ‘brain’. Add in that Aaron is 6 foot and the one part of his game he could improve is his ability in the air then we have a potentially potent goal-getter already on the books.

    While he has never, as far as I know ever played up front he is a very much more confident, experienced player now than 12 months ago.

    If Aaron said – “I want to play up front” he is likely to get a serious hearing.

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  26. “Saying that the Chelsea defense laugh at Giroud and Theo, ….. blah blah”

    or is a humorous take on the reality that when our midfield is pressed or kicked we are a bit toothless up front….but sure …… “stop trashing our boys” ……..sensitivities hitting the roof 🙂

    out of order is when people dont get the context of comments and insinuate their own things but nevermind….maybe i should start doing same ….

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  27. i can see that everyone is sad today because of theo. but no one is more gutted than me. i cant even bear to look at his picture in my room since yesterday. i didnt realise i love him this much.
    talks about who to replace him is on but nobody can be theo walcott. you can definitely get better ball players and goal scorers but theo is a kind of player that you never know what to expect from him. when you think he is having a bad game, he suddenly gets you a goal or assist. he and ramsey are my favourite players, but i thought i love ramsey more, but since yesterday, i dont even know if i can miss anyone like i miss theo.
    get well soon theo. come back soon walcott.

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  28. I don’t think the club want to recall or even could recall Campbell, but he has been doing well. An option for next season I guess.

    Following the scythe on Ramsey, McMahon has been one of the few sane and reliable plundits out there:
    http://www.forbes.com/sites/bobbymcmahon/2014/01/06/what-am-i-bid-for/

    Comparing the cost of the BFG to other CB transfers in the PL is a seriously funny exercise, good stuff.
    It cheered me up. A little *sobs*.

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  29. Hunter,
    Chelsea have felt Walcott’s fangs in the past.

    Heh, he invented the fall over dribbling technique, Drunken Style, against Chelsea. That was in the 5-3. Let’s not deny that goal was legendary, and it was not the only humiliation. He also helped to press their back line out of shape when they got tonked 3-0 or 3-1 not so long ago. Then there was the goal in that CC final when the frail Diaby knocked out…

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  30. Blah, blah, blah top of the league. Not sensitivity, dear Hunter, I’m merely calling out your poor analysis.

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