Arsenal’s Transfer Strategy-With Wings

Our man Shard has been thinking and writing

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Since Sven Mislintat mysteriously decided to walk away, Arsenal have had no one in charge of strategically overseeing the recruitment at the club. This means not just identifying talent, but building a squad keeping in mind the club philosophy, administrative issues of age, homegrown status, and financial budgets, and long term plans.

Whether the (as good as) vacant position was the reason behind the January window fiasco or not, it’s hard to say from the outside. However, Arsenal certainly recognise the need of having someone in the role. It seems the rumour mill has turned full circle and is back to Edu – the former Invincible and current Brazilian national team coordinator – as the favourite to take over as Technical Director. Francis Cagigao will also be the Head of Recruitment. Honestly, I don’t know who does what in such a structure.

But regardless of who is calling the shots, this will be an important summer for Arsenal. With or without CL football, we need to up the quality of our play and of our squad, ensuring we’re strong enough to withstand the rigours of the season, and are flying high at the end of it. There’s a few ways of going about this, and I’ve taken the trouble to list 5 options below.

The Ostrich Option:

Do nothing. It’ll be alright. Problems tend to go away on their own. But lash out at the first target you spot and throw your weight around. The high wage bill must go! Sell the players you can, and stomp on those you can’t. You are an ostrich with razor sharp claws after all. May not be the most productive thing to do, but activity is good for keeping the blood flowing, and keep the remaining watchers entertained. Some might even bow their heads and pray for a miracle along with you.

The Crow Option:

Scavenge! Get the players you can find on the cheap. Send out your murder to bring you the chewed up carcasses of unwanted players hoping there’s enough meat on them. Work smart not hard! Take the easy pickings available from the agents’ own stables. Hopefully by the end you have a belly that is full, but not bloated by an unhealthy diet.

The Butterfly Option:

Store yourself away for a period of quiet contemplation and reflection. Don’t worry about the outside world. Take your time, grow, and when you’re ready, emerge, transformed into something more beautiful than you were. Fill the gaps primarily through the academy. Bring in players under 21 through the market, and get them all playing together. You may not get to zoom off into the stratosphere, but you will flutter your wings and fly.

The Peacock option:

Strut your stuff! Make it rain, baby. Make use of all the resources you have. The stats, scouts, agent contacts, and above all, the $$$. Use the treasure you’ve collected over the years. Cover yourself in fine jewellery. Redefine opulence. Fill all your squad needs by recruiting from among the best available players, and maybe even some that aren’t.

The Phoenix option:

Burn. Set yourself on fire. Let people mourn the loss of what is and what once was. But, and here’s the tricky part, re-emerge as the beautiful, mythical creature that you are. Find inspiration in the golden past. Reanimate, and radiate the joy, wonder, and warmth to all lucky enough to watch you. Clear house of those that don’t belong. Appoint a visionary coach that knows and plays the Arsenal way. Make signings that suit your philosophy. Aim to make it to the top within the next 3 years.

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134 comments on “Arsenal’s Transfer Strategy-With Wings

  1. TBF I have actually heard some genius’ suggesting that AFC look to sell Aubamayang this summer.

    I could’ve offered them a cheaper lobotomy using with my hacksaw and a desk clamp and some disinfenctant wipes. Why pay for a top top top surgeon when you can go to the butchers?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I don’t read most of the blogs anymore fins. What did they say about Ozil now?

    Honestly, it is almost funny to see these master wheeler dealers get consistently outmaneuvered by the simple honesty of Ozil and his agent. It’s easy if you’ve got values. Live up to your image. Ozil’s agent doesn’t lie to the public about stuff like transfers and contracts. At the same time they are no pushovers. A single Bergkamp quote was enough to send the people at the club and their mouthpieces scrambling for cover with feigned indignation. No clearer sign than they know what they are.

    Likewise, Ramsey was supposed to keep shut and accept his lot and not tell the media the truth. He got the cold shoulder from the Arsenal site when it was first announced. Fan outrage forced them to then put his photo as their twitter banner and go gaga over all his highlights. But no one dares to ask about the withdrawal of the contract. Not in as many words even in this latest PR exercise.

    Btw, Arsenal will spend money this summer. A decent amount as well. Look at Raul’s face when he’s talking about the transfer window. Fun, he called it. That’s what it’s all about, he says. Yes Raul, we know.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. the whole selling Ramsey is in the best interest of Arsenal FC, and the Ozil’s contract has hindered AFC thing, not to mention that AFC will sell any player who does not sign a new contract when offered with 2 years to go, whole thing is so bad for AFC, we are telling potential signings that we don’t pay like the big clubs, that we can’t take hits on players, that we will show no loyalty to a player, God forbid that any of our players get a long term injury, we will dump them ASAP, well we should not be surprised after all we couldn’t wait to get rid of Cazorla and Wilshere last summer and now Welbeck.

    George wrote an article at the start of the season asking the question have AFC decided that to go the economy route, that there is no point in getting into an arms race we can’t win. Everything we have seen in the last 12 Months suggests that George was spot on. Even the interview from the two PR men this week suggests that we will not see our transfer record, which is around £50M, be in any danger of getting broken, when our rivals are spending that four or five times on defenders alone,

    Liked by 3 people

  4. ed

    I see your point and was nodding in agreement. But I think there’s a nuance to this.

    Arsenal want the CL for the money and prestige. They will look to spend in the transfer market, but are less keen to pay high running costs , ie wages. What my prediction is we’ll see a lot of movement in the transfer market by Arsenal over the next 3 years. Both Ins and Outs. This will give the illusion that Arsenal are keen to move forward, but it will basically be a case of Arsenal being keen to profit off of transfers as well as CL football.

    You are right about the message we are now sending out to players, and the problems that will cause. But what our pitch to players going forward will be is a chance to play CL football at a young age, and to use the club as a stepping stone for richer clubs. That’s it. We’re going to be a selling club, and with the right massaging of the media this will be cheered by the mob. (Pun intended)

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Btw, this is only me guessing and playing Oracle. But it’s based on a couple of things.
    1. My belief that Raul’s real motivation is dealing with agents.
    2. The sort of Technical Director we have been targeting. Monchi, Overmars and Edu.

    Monchi buys and sells a lot (A LOT) of players with no sensible plan. He bets on potential, and the few successes lend to big money sales which more than cover the rest of the cost of operation. Sevilla’s success under him (and Emery) was more of a cup run than an ability to pull closer to high spenders in the league. Something that Arsenal would need more.

    Overmars – identified and brought through a lot of young talent which has led Ajax to the CL semis, and will lead to them selling for big money.

    Edu – Ok, so I know less about him, except that he did a job at Corinthians which I’m guessing involved selling players to Europe. That he’s at Brazil which also means putting the best young Brazilian talent (and their agents) on his radar, and that his agent is Kia Joorabchian, him of West Ham’s Tevez and Mascherano fame.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Shard

    It’s the same as what they said re:Adebayor. or Chamberlain.

    A decade long pattern.

    The Billy Big Blaggers of this world know more about Football Agents they have ever or will ever know about the Football.

    Which is why like Raul they start smacking their lips and gnashing their teeth at any talk of mindless (to any sports fan) transfers.

    Show. Me. The. Money.
    Or as everyone knows and understands the Benfica/Porto model backed up by the Brazilian slave industry/Mafia so admired by that stand up gent Kia, and pals. Edu as DoF? Where can I place me bets!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. “Protect the values of the club”

    Or embrace the ****s whilst they’re in the process of taking your front doors off the hinges.

    At the least no one out there can pretend that they don’t know what the values of the Billy Big Blaggers and Sports Communications consultants are.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Shard given the records from the court proceedings involving FC Barcelona And his preceding lies in all interviews your opinion on Raul is a simple and dare we say it humble observation.

    Liked by 3 people

  9. I was thinking about how some Gunners make it into the Arsenal hall of fame and others get forgotten, or at least are less remembered. Today I remembered George Wood our goalkeeper who I think left at the end of 1983 for the Smeagles( without checking it). Any memories?


    Liked by 1 person

  10. Nope sorry Mills.

    Have fond memories of Steve Morrow who didn’t make it into the hall of fame (?)

    Liked by 1 person

  11. A player who, no doubt about it, would’ve liked to have had Paul Davis kicking about.

    It was not in the interests of Arsenal Football Club to relegate Paul to the reserves at his peak, just after he’d led a midfield to a title with only one defeat. Sure, I fell in love with the club at that time and sure all those cups helped, but no doubt about it that squad could’ve acheived even more if one of the best footballers in the squad hadn’t been kicking his heels.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. I remember him Mills, we had him the Scotland no.1 at the time, and Pat Jennings the N. Ireland no.1 and Rhys Wilmott was called up to the Wales squad at that time too, but I don’t think he played. Woods and Jennings even faced off against other in a Home Nations game.

    Liked by 2 people

  13. Billy Big Blagger who has been attacking Ozil hard this season:

    “I really like Raul…”

    No shit Sherlock!
    We know!!
    Can’t think what it was that gave it away. Kerrrr-Ching!

    What a shower of predictable craven parasites: there’s no harm in stating the obvious! Is there?

    – If a numbnut like me can tell you all on Monday that the Billy Blag cast this week was the opening of a salvo of Sports Communications in response to Ozil’s agent then safe to say they are predictable fools who are fully engaged with their Sports Communications on behalf of their clients. Parasites. Simples.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. it really is funny seeing the guys who whinged and moaned everytime Arsene said we can’t break the clubs wage structure, are now extolling the virtues of Raul and Viani saying we can’t break the clubs wage structure. whatever happened to pay them what they want, or when are we going to pay like a big club etc etc etc.

    Liked by 4 people

  15. En encore…three, two, one, all together now, you’ve all got your scripts which no one not even a numb nut like Finsbury could’ve predicted on Monday eh:

    “I really like Raul!”

    Liked by 1 person

  16. “Can Ozil & Ramsey play together in the same team?”

    I have a bridge for sale. 400 years old. Goes by the name London. Any takers?

    Liked by 1 person

  17. hah! No chance fins. I’ve heard the songs about it falling down. (Does anyone know why that was a children’s rhyme?)

    Heh. I must admit I laughed when I saw the I really like Raul statement. He’s done nothing but fuck up Arsenal in every way, but hey, he gives me access to the club as long as I act as a mouthpiece, so I really like him. Raul may do it, but pro blogger don’t bite the hand that feeds. Arsenal values!

    Liked by 3 people

  18. Which blogger really likes him? I don’t read blogs, they are written by cunts……………………..oh wait.

    Liked by 3 people

  19. Is that like a personal attack or something?

    Liked by 2 people

  20. Daniel Ballard
    ‏ @dg_ballard
    2h2 hours ago

    Delighted to have extended my contract with this fantastic club, couldn’t have done it without the support of my family and everybody at the club ❤️ Excited for the future 🙌 @arsenal

    Liked by 2 people

  21. There are other good blogs on the footy and the Arsenal!


    “…this idea of winning ugly should not be seen as a compromise of philosophy, but rather, it’s a sort of in-game resource that all (good) teams call upon when things are not going their way.”


  22. There are other good Arsenal blogs!

    “this idea of winning ugly should not be seen as a compromise of philosophy, but rather, it’s a sort of in-game resource that all (good) teams call upon when things are not going their way.”

    – @Arsenalcolumn

    Liked by 1 person

  23. Calum Chamber has won the Fulham player of the year award.

    Liked by 2 people

  24. seemingly Arsenal fly out to Baku today.

    Liked by 1 person

  25. Arsenal in discussions with Dutch 2nd division side
    Lee Hurley –
    May 25, 2019
    Arsenal are in talks with SC Camburr about a collaboration that would see the Dutch side loan Arsenal’s players.
    Eddie Nketiah, Reiss Nelson and Tyreece John-Jules (Photo by David Price)
    Eddie Nketiah, Reiss Nelson and Tyreece John-Jules (Photo by David Price)

    The Dutch second division side sent delegates to London this week in order to discuss what they hope will become a mutually beneficially arrangement.

    Camburr have already benefited from loaning youngsters from Manchester City (Albert Rusnak and Jack Byrne) and they are hopeful of coming to a formal arrangement with Arsenal.

    Technical manager, Foeke Booy is cautious, however, of turning into a club swamped with mercenaries. “On the contrary,” he said. “We don’t want to become a NAC Breda or Vitesse.”

    Vitesse are seen as Chelsea’s ‘feeder’ club.

    The Dutch side are hopeful of striking an agreement with Arsenal that will see our youngsters play in the yellow and blue of their side but discussions are still at an early stage.

    “It is not yet that far,” Booy added. “It [the visit to London] was a broad working visit that involved all sorts of things.”

    Booy travelled to London with two directors, Ard de Graaf and Gerald van den Belt.

    “Both clubs will first start thinking about what we could possibly do for each other.”

    Camburr are based in the city of Leeuwarden and were formed in 1964, just seven years before Unai Emery was born.

    Liked by 1 person

  26. Young Ballard, not much like his Mum is he

    Liked by 1 person

  27. “Lopsided Arsenal” may explain why Ozil and Ramsey have been marginalized as Emery changes the attacking strategy focussing nearly 50% of attacks down the left, the highest ever for any pich-side during the past 10 years. For more details see my blog at:

    Liked by 1 person

  28. Arsenal’s full 24-man traveling squad for Baku: Özil, Mustafi, Amaechi, Sokratis, Jenkinson, Xhaka, Koscielny, Kolasinac, Torreira, Welbeck, Maitland-Niles, Monreal, Elneny, Lichtsteiner, Leno, Iliev, Saka, Iwobi, Guendouzi, Willock, Aubameyang, Lacazette, Nketiah and Cech.
    One of this squad will not make the squad for the final, as it will be a 23 man squad.
    2 players in the squad who have not made their first team debut yet, goalie Iliev and forward Amaechi. 17 year old Saka the youngest in the squad.


  29. See one of the big names of ITK land is claiming Sarri off to Juventus. Wonder how that would work for Ramsey.

    Have Chelsea been utilising midfield runners in final third much this year? Did Napoli? Think Hamsik was a key man in his time there who prob scored and assisted plenty.

    Can’t be ideal for Ramsey waiting to see who ends up new boss, with that slight worry they’ll end up with Mourinho! Fingers crossed it’s someone good for him.


  30. Ed

    What you reckon on Dutch 2nd division for our young prospects then?

    Seems too low for better or older ones- Nketiah, Willock,etc- but maybe ok for others.

    Hope we have luck and make good decisions with them next few years. Still have sense we are lot less likely than some rivals to keep many players on past 20 if haven’t made breakthrough by then, and as consequence could maybe miss out on the odd windfall likes of which Liverpool in line for if they cash in on Wilson.

    Suppose Bennacer an example. Think he is probably up at that sort of value at moment. Impossible to know how these things come about though, especially how hard we might try to keep someone or how determined player is to move on.


  31. well Rich its all about getting experience for them of adult football, where it matters, points at stake, but also in a team and a league where they will not be kicked from pillar to post.


  32. Since there’s tumbleweed rolling through here at the mo, I found this in the archives on this 30th anniversary of Anfield ’89. Quality reading:



  33. Good stop Labo, it’s up as the blog


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