Tag Archives: Arsenal FC

Great time to play Man City – PL fixtures announced

Manchester City at home

Chelsea away

Welcome to the Premier League Unai Emery.

Whilst a lot of people have winced at Arsenal’s tough start to the Premier League season, I prefer to look at it another way.

The beginning of the season is a great time to play both sides due to the World Cup.

Arsenal have just 8 players at the World Cup – Granit Xhaka, Mesut Özil, David Ospina, Nacho Monreal, Mohamed Elneny, Alex Iwobi, Danny Welbeck & new boy Stephan Lichtsteiner.

Only really Ozil, Monreal and Xhaka start in our strongest XI.

This means for the opening day of the season, we could line up the following line up:

Cech

Bellerin Mustafi Sokratis Kolasinac

Wilshere* AMN Ramsey

Mkhitaryan

Aubameyang Lacazette

*If he signs

The only place we are looking lightweight is in midfield, as both Xhaka and Elneny are in Russia, and likely new signing Lucas Torreira will also be out there.

Manchester City, meanwhile, have 16 players at the World Cup.

The likes of Kyle Walker, Sergio Aguero, Gabriel Jesus, Nicolas Otamendi, Raheem Sterling and Kevin De Bruyne strut their stuff around Russia

John Stones, Vincent Kompany, Ederson, Danilo, Fernandinho, Fabian Delph, Benjamin Mendy, Ilkay Gundogan, Bernardo Silva and David Silva will also be out there.

Looking at their squad, you struggle to make a competitive XI out of those players who have not gone.

If they rush some players who will be knocked it early – the likes of Stones and Walker – they might be able to put out a decent XI; but an XI who would not have had much of a pre season.

Chelsea also have a lot of players at the World Cup. 14 in total.

Eden Hazard, Thibaut Courtois and loan man Michy Batshuayi. Gary Cahill and Ruben Loftus-Cheek.

Olivier Giroud N’Golo Kante, Antonio Rudiger, Willian, Cesar Azpilicueta, Andreas Christensen and Willy Caballero.

Kenneth Omeruo and Victor Moses will be playing for Nigeria.

Going into the first few games of the season, they will be without a senior goal keeper and have just senior CB – David Luiz – to choose from.

Emery has a chance of starting the season off with a bang. Two wins against two top 6 sides.

Other fixtures to look out for are:

Spurs (a): March 2nd

Spurs (h): December 1st

Boxing Day: Brighton (a)

New Years Eve: Liverpool (a)

New Years Day: Fulham (h)

Last game: Burnley (h)

The post-Europa league games are also friendly. They will all get moved to Sunday and for away supporters, we have avoided any long trips:

Everton (h)

Fulham (a)

Crystal Palace (a)

Wolves (h)

Tottenham (h)

Southampton (a)

Two of the post Europa League away days in London and the furthest to travel is Southampton. Not bad.

With the transfer window closing on the eve of the Premier Leaghe starting, clubs have to get a move on with any business they have to do.

Arsenal have fairly nice fixtures in the last 8 games of the season. If we start well, we could be in with a shout towards the end.

Up the Arsenal

Keenos

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Sokratis to join Arsenal today?

I am usually very anti-speculation – other than to have a fun chat about what we might do in the pub with mates. Fans who predict things usually get it wrong. Fans who predict things and present it as them knowing it’s happening end up embarrassed. But this deal seems to be about to lump over the line.

In classic Arsenal fashion, the deal for Sokratis looked all but done over a week ago, but things went quiet, they went slowly. Were Arsenal exploring other avenues? Or was this just how long transfer take on reality.

Then yesterday afternoon reports from both Greece and Germany started to align – chances are they were simply quoting the same made up source.

The talk was the Sokratis (I really can’t be bothered to Google his surname) arrived in England in Sunday evening. And that on Monday he had his medical and signed the deal.

£17m over 3 years for the Greek centre back who turns 30 in 4 days.

Petit demanded experience over kids, I wonder what his opinion is about Arsenal signing the 79 capped international – I imagine he will still moan (and I am getting a little obsessed over his comments).

Anyway, the deal seems wrapped up, should happen today, and should also see Stephan Lichtsteiner sign on a free before Switzerland fly out to Russia.

It will also be interesting to see what happens with Bernd Leno.

The German goal keeper was left out of their squad to go to the World Cup.

Swooping for him would mean Unai Emery would have his first choice goal keeper and back 4 to work with for the entire pre season.

Fingers crossed it all happens today otherwise I will look more muggy than normal.

Keenos

Emmanuel Petit – Rent-a-quote Gobshite

Emmanuel Petit. He is at it again.

During the last few years of Arsene Wenger, he became an outspoken critic of the man who bought him to England.

Wenger’s departure from Arsenal show that Petit’s view was not about giving an honest opinion, and more about his realisation that criticising Arsenal can give him a career.

In a rant about Arsenal’s budget – where he criticised the club for only giving Unai Emery a £60m budget and showed himself up for not having a clue about Arsenal, or how transfers work – he said the following:

Petit: “They need to bring in top quality players. I want to say to the board, ‘Can you just stop bringing in young players for one year?’. We’ve had enough of young players. The club is full of them. It’s been like this for 15 years now, we need something else”

Firstly, why is Petit talking about “we” like he cares about Arsenal?

Before he was signed from Monaco by Wenger for just £2.5m, he was a journeyman centre back who has played just twice for France in 3 years.

After his first year at Arsenal, he won the World Cup for France, playing alongside Didier Deschamps in midfield – starting ahead of Patrick Vieira in the final.

He literally owes his World Cup winners medal to Arsene Wenger and Arsenal.

Two years after that World Cup won, Petit engineered a move to Barcelona. He only actually played at Arsenal for 3 years. So enough of the “we”. He isn’t an Arsenal legend. He isn’t Arsenal.

Back to the quotes.

He says Arsenal need to “stop bringing in young players for a year”. This highlights that he is nothing more than a clueless rent-a-quote gobshite trying to make a media career out of criticising Arsenal.

This summer, the two players we have been heavily linked with are

Sokratis Papastathopoulos (30) and Stephan Lichtsteiner (34).

In January, we signed Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (28) and Henrikh Mkhitaryan (29).

Add Alexandre Lacazette (26) and Sead Kolašinac (24), and you are starting to get the point.

In January Arsenal did buy Konstantinos Mavropanos (20) for £1.8m. That is our only young signing in the last 12 months. And you’d have to be an idiot if you did not want a club to sign any young player with potential. I feel Petit is that idiot. Or pretends to be as he knows it will get him the attention he craves.

Even in 2016, we signed Granit Xhaka (then 23), Shkodran Mustafi (24) and Lucas Pérez (26). Xhaka has over 50 caps for his country, and Mustafi a World Cup winners medal.

All Petit has done with his comments is show how out of touch he is. With Arsenal, and with football.

He later stated that “We need talented experienced players. We need big characters & big personalities.”

Ignoring again the “we” word, the bloke must be seriously stupid. If Aubameyang is not a big personality, a big character, and targeting the 34 year old Swiss captain is not aiming for an experienced player, I do not really know what Petit wants?

Actually, I do know what Petit wants. Attention.

Emmanuel Petit owes his career to Arsenal and left as soon as he could.

He is now a rent-a-quote gobshite trying to make a career off the back of Arsenal.

Keenos