Tag Archives: Manchester City

Transfer fees set to become obsolete?

Twelve months ago a lot was being made in the press about the contract is Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez.

“1 year left, how have Arsenal got themselves into this position” were the cries at the time.

An interesting interview with Arsene Wenger gave a glimpse into what he believed was the future.

With dramatically increasing transfer fees, the former Arsenal boss was of the opinion that the future would see a lot more players winding down their contract and leaving for no transfer fee.

That clubs would offer shorter term deals to players 2 to 3 years, a player would do his time and move on.

It would provide security to the club – knowing that if a player signed a 3 year deal he was likely to see it out – and security to the player – knowing that if he fell out of favour, he could spend a year away on loan before moving on.

For those scoffing at the opinion, writing it off as a way Wenger justifies the clubs handling of the Ozil and Sanchez contract situations, let’s look at those contracts set to expire within the next 2 years:

Manchester United


David de Gea*, Anthony Martial*, Juan Mata, Ander Herrera, Phil Jones, Chris Smalling, Luke Shaw, Matteo Darmian*, Antonio Valencia*, Ashley Young, Andreas Pereira


Marcus Rashford*, Nemanja Matic*, Eric Bailly, Marouane Fellaini*, Lee Grant

*Contract contains option for a further year



Aaron Ramsey, Danny Welbeck, Nacho Monreal, Petr Cech, Stephan Lichtsteiner


Laurent Koscielny, Carl Jenkinson

Manchester City


Vincent Kompany, Eliaquim Mangala, Brahim Diaz


Raheem Sterling, Sergio Aguero, Ilkay Gundogan, David Silva, Fernandinho, Fabian Delph, Oleksandr Zinchenko, Phil Foden, Claudio Bravo



Toby Alderweireld, Jan Vertonghen, Mousa Dembele, Fernando Llorente, Michel Vorm


Christian Eriksen, Vincent Janssen



Cesc Fabregas, David Luiz, Olivier Giroud, Gary Cahill, Lucas Piazon, Willy Caballero, Robert Green


Eden Hazard, Willian, Cesar Azpilicueta, Pedro, Marco van Ginkel, Ethan Ampadu



James Milner, Daniel Sturridge, Alberto Moreno, Lazar Markovic


Adam Lallana, Joel Matip, Nathaniel Clyne, Divock Origi

If you disregard the guys expiring in. 2020, you could easily build a competitive team with players whose contract expires in 12 months.

De Gea

Alderweireld Kompany Vertonghen

Milner Herrera Fabregas Shaw

Martial Ramsey


I do not think transfer fees will become completely obsolete in the future. Teams will still want to sign players under contract. But what will happen is the majority of transfer will be free, or loan deals, and fees for players under contract will become astronomical.

The future could be upon us.



Things about to get a lot easier for The Arsenal

Unai Emery was handed a horrendous start to Arsenal’s new dawn the Premier League fixtures were drawn.

Manchester City and Chelsea. The last two champions. Winners of 4 of the last 5 Premier League seasons.

It was always going to be a thought start, and Arsenal have ended up with the results that many expected.

Two defeats from the opening two games.

Prior to the opening day game of the season, Arsenal had beaten Manchester City just once one 7 games – that FA Cup Semi-final.

Arsenal have not beaten Chelsea at Stamford Bridge since 2011 – when Robin van Persie scored a hat trick.

So anyone expecting 6 points from the opening games was deluded.

There was hope.

City and Chelsea both had a lot of players at the World Cup, and Chelsea had a crisis summer with a new manager coming in late. But the hope did not materialise as Arsenal lost both games.

Against City, Arsenal struggled; but every side is going to struggle versus the Champions.

The Chelsea game had a lot more positives about it.

Whilst we were still shaky at the back; we were electric upfront and could have scored 4 or 5 if the players realised it was not rugby and you have to put the ball under the bar.

Matteo Guendouzi continued his fine start to an Arsenal shirt. A physical presence in the midfield, he shows nice passing to get alongside defensive prowess.

The same old faces were the ones to late us down again.

Petr Cech could have done more with two of their goals. Hector Bellerin ran out of steam on the right, and Granit Xhaka was poor in the middle. The game passes Mesut Ozil by.

It is time to make a decision on Cech. He has had a rough first two games and does not look comfortable playing out of the back. With new signing Bernd Leno waiting in the wings, it is probably time for a swap.

As for Bellerin, I feel sorry for him a bit.

On another day, if the finishing was better, he would’ve come away from the game with a hat trick of assists. Instead he was horribly exposed towards the end, with Chelsea’s winner coming from his flank.

The problem is under Emery’s system he does not have the cover of a winger. He is expect to defend and attack, and it is draining.

Mauricio Pochettino up the road uses his full backs in a similar way, but he rotated them almost every game.

If Emery is to ask his full backs to bet up and down the wing every game, he is going to have to expect them to run out of gas.

In Stephan Lichsteiner Arsenal have an experienced, dependable right back who surely needs to come in for Bellerin, even if it is just for one game.

The middle of the park is a bit of a concern.

Xhaka was horrendous, but Emery played down taking him off at half time by saying:

‘It was a tactical decision because he has the yellow card also.

‘I think we don’t take risks with this yellow card and also to give the chance to another player in the match.’

On came summer signing Lucas Torreira and alongside 19-year old Guendouzi they looked an ok partnership.

The concern when playing that pair is neither is a good a passer as Xhaka, and you feel we might have trouble transitioning the ball from defence through the midfield.

I would like to see Xhaka alongside Torreira, but also think Guendouzi has done little wrong to lose his place.

It is a conundrum and it might take a few games to work out where our best pairing is.

8 of the next 9 fixtures are a lot more comfortable than the 2 we started the season with. These will go a long way to showing the progress Emery has made with this time.

I am not too concerned with the start we have made.

The truth is Man City and Chelsea was always going to be a tough first 2 games.

Had Arsenal played the likes of Fulham and Newcastle, we’d probably be top

Plenty of positives to take. Still expect us to be top 4.


JW Diaries: The New Dawn Begins

Whilst watching the U15’s Win 1-0 in a close game at Hale End last Tuesday, the first major decision of the season was made; U23s in Manchester (City) or the U18s at London Colney on Saturday, we went with the latter!

When you get the First Team, U23’s, U18’s and U16’s playing over 2 days, the lower year teams become thin due to the large squads needed, obviously for the first team, but also for the U23’s, especially as they travelled to Manchester on the Friday afternoon for their match against City.

My first outing to London Colney this season didn’t disappoint. The U18’s had a 14 year old in goal, the sub goalie got injured in the warm up therefore, a trialist keeper as well as others playing for the U16 match were also on the U18 bench!

For the record, the U18’s were 2-0 up at half time with Aston Villa pulling 2 back, before a couple near the end, saw us get a just-about deserved 4-2 win.

Sunday it was all change.

With my usual pub closing down, it meant a change of pre-match venue! Once the teams flashed up on one of the screens, I wasn’t overly surprised with the line up, but what was worried that it appeared to be a 4-3-3 formation which basically gives up midfield! Whilst I can see this working against lower opposition, it was never going to work against the Premier League Champions who without doubt have the strongest and best squad in the league, probably Europe!

Unusually, I left the pub an hour before kick-off, got a teamsheet from a press friend and was in my seat watching the warm ups for the first time ever at the Emirates Stadium.

Having watched all 5 first team friendlies live, it didn’t prepare me for what was unfolding in front of my eyes. I was shocked to see us playing the ball out from the back, I’d like to think we have been doing this in training, if we did, it certainly didn’t show on the pitch.

As the game progressed, Manchester City played their usual game, taking control with slick movement and precise passing, which was something we lacked.

Arsenal looked a far better side in the 2nd half once the substitutions were made, we were unlucky not to score. At the end of the day, it was Unai  Emery’s first match in charge against a world class team. Manchester City will dominate almost every game they play in this season.

Emery’s Premier League baptism continues with a tough away game against Chelsea awaits, hopefully then, things can only get better……..