Tag Archives: She Wore

Arsenal could raise millions from loanee sales

Long term readers of the blog will know we are huge champions of Hale End.

There is nothing better as a fan seeing a lad that has been with the club since a young boy breaking through and becoming a first team regular.

In recent years we have been able to celebrate the likes of Alex Iwobi, Bukayo Saka, Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Joe Willock pulling on that Arsenal shirt, living the dream.

But we also understand that not everyone will make it at Arsenal.

For every Saka, there is a Xavier Amaechi, whilst Eddie Nketiah progressed, Stephy Mavididi joined Juventus.

The step up from talented youth team player to first team contender at a club like Arsenal is huge.

Our last great youth side was the 2009 FA Youth Cup wining team that contained Jack Wilshere.

The game against Tottenham at White Hart Lane will live long in the memory of any fan that was there.

The side that went on to win the title contained some talented kids – but only 2 have gone on to have a regular career at the top level; Jack Wilshere and Francis Coquelin.

Others, such as Emmanuel Frimpong, Kyle Bartley, Luke Ayling, Henri Lansbury, James Shea and Jay Emmanuel-Thomas have had decent careers, but not really hit the big time.

The key is maximising the sales of those that you sell.

We perhaps undersold the likes of Amaechi & Mavididi as they failed to sign the “second contract” which would secure their services at 18 for another 3 years.

That second contract is important as the one signed at 17-years-old can only be a maximum of 2 years. Once they hit 18, they will usually get offered a new 3 year deal. If they decide not sign it, clubs must sell then or risk losing the player for compensation 12 months later.

Arsenal are in that situation with Florian Balogun at the moment.

If a player does sign a 3 year deal at 18, it then enables the club to have develop the player internally for a year, before sending the player out on loan for a year, to truly judge whether they are going to make it.

At that point the player is 20, with a year left on the contract.

The loan deal becomes very important when it comes to maximising profit.

Off the back of scoring 10 goals in 20 games for Swansea City in the Championship, Liverpool sold Rhian Brewster to Sheffield United for a reported fee of around £23.5 million.

At the same time Sheffield United were also sniffing around Folarin Balogun, with a fee of £7million reported.

That difference in transfer fee is the difference between one having a decent loan spell and one not.

It also works on a smaller scale, with Championship sides more likely to spend £5m on a player following a good loan spell rather than £1m on a player who has no first team football. League One sides spending £1m on a player after a good loan spell rather than £250k, and so on.

So whilst the lads out on loan from Arsenal might not make it in North London, there loan deals are key to the club as their sales could raise millions next summer.

Take Matt Smith, who was part of Arsenal’s FA Cup final winning squad.

Smith is currently performing very well on loan for Swindon.

Already 20, Arsenal have a lot of options in central midfield coming through – the likes of Charlie Patino, Miguel Azeez and Marcelo Flores. All 3 of these are rate higher than Smith being younger.

If Smith continues his good form for Swindon, it is likely a Championship side would look to offer a couple of million for him next summer.

Arsenal also have the likes of Jordi Osei-Tutu, Tyreece John-Jules, Mark McGuinness, Zech Medley, Tolaji Bola, Ben Sheaf, Trae Coyle, Zak Swanson, James Olayinka and Harry Clarke playing across the Championship, League One and Holland.

The majority of those players on loan will leave Arsenal this summer. Some will go on a free, others will be sold.

If they continue to have good loan spells, Arsenal would look to command 7 figure transfer fees rather than 6 figures. These sales could raise millions next summer, giving Arsenal further investment into the first team.

A good loan spell is not only good for a players development, but also maximises their sale potential.


Mikel Arteta more Rafa Benitez than Pep Guardiola

Each manager is his own person, has his own style, his own way of doing things. No two managers are the same, although many are similar in terms of philosophy.

Take Arsene Wenger and Pep Guardiola.

Both have a similar outlook on the game. Passing football heavily influenced by Johan Cruyff’s Ajax and Barcelona teams.

In Mikel Arteta, we assumed we were getting a man cut from a similar cloth.

Arteta had come through the Barcelona youth system, before a career that saw him play in 4 different countries.

He would play for, and captain, Arsenal under Wenger before joining Guardiola’s coaching set-up at Manchester City.

It is therefore a surprise to many that Arteta’s Arsenal more resemble a George Graham side rather than a Wenger.

Tough to break down. Defence first. Few chances created.

As well as Graham, Arteta’s playing style is very similar to one of his and Guardiola’s countrymen – Rafa Benitez  .

Throughout Benitez’s career, his sides have sacrificed attacking flair for solidity.

Benitez’s squads are usually renowned for their defensive nature and low number of goals scored against them.

With just 7 goals conceded this season, Arsenal have the best defensive record in the league. A huge shift from conceding 150 league goals in the previous 3 seasons.

Benitez  would set his team up to exploit opposition weaknesses, something which Arteta also does and has seen his side beat Liverpool 3 times, Manchester United twice and both Chelsea and Manchester City once.

Benitez would also play key players in unorthodox positions to suit a formation. Think Steven Gerrard playing as a winger.

Under Arteta Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has been used predominantly as a winger, whilst Kieran Tierney has played as centre back. Winger Bukayo Saka has played more in a full back or wing back position than in a forward role.

At this point, some fans might be feeling a little down, a little cheated. That we have potentially recruited a Rafa Benitez rather than a Pep Guardiola.

But that is unfair on Benitez.

In a 12 year period managing Valencia, Liverpool, Inter Milan, Chelsea and Napoli, Benitez won 12 trophies including the Champions League, 2 La Liga league titles, 2 UEFA Cup’s, 2 domestic cups and 5 super cups.

If in a dozen years time, Arteta has that sort of trophy haul whilst at Arsenal, his name will rightly be mentioned alongside the likes of Herbert Chapman, George Graham and Arsene Wenger.

The key difference between Benitez and Guardiola is the elder Spaniard very rarely found himself in charge of the richest side in the league (bar a spell as Real Madrid manager).

Benitez had to adapt to make Valencia competitive in Spain, winning 2 La Liga titles.

Liverpool made 2 Champions League finals in 3 years under Benitez, winning one. It was during a period when Liverpool had fallen away from being a European powerhouse.

Likewise for in Italy he never managed the richest sides in the league (Juventus, AC Milan) but still won 3 trophies in 2 years.

In just 11 months, including a break for Covid19, Arteta has already led his side to 2 trophies.

It might not be the free flowing Guardiola / Wenger football we hoped for, but there are many ways to skin a cat. Many different ways to win a trophy.

I am still confident that as our improved defensive stability continues, we will begin to improve at the other end of the pitch.

And if playing Benitez style defensive football does become Arteta’s trademark, then so be it if he continues to lead his team to trophies.

No one complained about George Graham’s Arsenal when we were winning titles!

Following our successful Facebook quizzes during the first lockdown, we are releasing a quiz book to raise more money for NHS Charities.

Pre-order below…


Pre-Sale: The Arsenal Quiz Book

When the country went into a nationwide lockdown at the end of March 2020, it left many people isolated, unable to leave their home.

Football, the one thing that brings us all together, was also suspended.

For many people, going down The Arsenal is their escape. Their chance to go out on a Saturday, have a few beers with their friends, to relax away from the stresses of real life. COVID19 took this away from us.

A few Arsenal fans decided to host a quiz night on the 2nd Friday of lockdown.

The hope was this would bring Arsenal fans together, taking everyone’s mind off the pandemic for 2 hours, and raise some money for NHS Charities Together.

Beers were had, music was played, and questions about The Arsenal were asked and answered. There was no winner. This was all about the taking part.

As soon as the quiz ended, the questions was asked. ‘Are you doing the same next Friday?’. There was no plan to, but the decision was made. New questions, new answers and a 2nd quiz the next Friday.

10 quizzes were held in total. Over 30,000 people joined in.

Halfway through the weeks, the conversation turned to “what next?” and the decision was made to organise the questions into a book to be released for Christmas – with profits to be donated to NHS Charities Together.

This is that book.

500 questions ranging from historical general knowledge, transfers, goal scorers and managers. Questions on the greatest moments in Arsenal history – 1971 Double, Anfield 89, 1998 Double, 2002 Double and the Invincibles of 2004, as well as the now famous “I also played for…” category.

Whether you test your knowledge against yourself, or use the book to host your own Arsenal Quiz Night over Christmas, this book will make a brilliant addition to your Arsenal collection.

Pre-sale is now live on on the She Wore Shop.

All profits from The Arsenal Quiz Book will be donated to NHS Charities Together.

She Wore