Tag Archives: Willian

David Luiz and Willian audition for Brazilian Eastenders

Well what a busy start to the week we have had over at The Arsenal.

On Monday, the news broke fairly late in the day that the deal taking Henrik Mihitaryan to Roma was finally confirmed.

This got us thinking about COVID19 clauses in contracts and if it was a part of the agreement between Arsenal and Lille that Gabriel would have to undergo testing and quarantine prior to the transfer being completed.

On Tuesday our suspicions were confirmed as Arsenal announced the signing of Gabriel on a cute little Zoom call alongside David Luiz and Willian. This was a day after Gabriel had been at the training ground to join the squad in the bi-weekly club COVID19 test.

The announcement was quite a novel way to announce a player.

A live call between David Luiz and Willian on YouTube. They had a little chat about Willian, and then went on to discussing Gabriel. A decision was then made to call him and there he was, in his Arsenal training gear.

Luiz and Willian certainly have a post playing career in Brazilian EastEnders, playing hairy, South American Mitchell brothers.

And I guess that would make Gabriel Billy Mitchell?

On the video call, David Luiz’s importance to Mikel Arteta came across.

He is now in the role of “Father of the Squad” as one of the oldest and most experienced. It will be his job to help the young players such as Gabriel and William Saliba settle. It is a role he seems to have fitted into nicely.

Prior to the Gabriel announcement was the news that Ken Friar is to step down from the board to become Arsenal’s Life President.

Ken Friar is a lifelong Arsenal employee, whose story is immortalised on the North Bridge:

One day in 1945, a young Ken Friar was playing football with friends in front of Arsenal Football Club’s Highbury Stadium.

A miskick saw the ball disappear underneath a parked car. As Ken Friar hesitantly went to retrieve the ball, the car’s owner appeared from the famous Highbury marble halls, it was none other than the manager of Arsenal, George Allison.

Allison was impressed with young Friar’s enthusiasm and told him to make himself useful by reporting to his office the next day, whereupon the 12 year-old was offered a job as a messenger at the stadium on matchdays.

From that day on, Mr Friar became a loyal servant to Arsenal Football Club.

in 1950, Mr Friar started working full-time in the matchday ticket office. Through years of hard work and dedication, he was the club Secretary, Managing Director, and also a leader in Arsenal’s move from Highbury to the new stadium.

At the forefront in driving Arsenal Football Club to success for over 60 years.

For that lifetime of dedication, we thank you Mr Friar.

It was sad to see some “fans” abusing Mr Friar in the Tweet announcing his retirement. So called Arsenal fans have also taken to abuse the clubs social media manager for the Gabriel announcement being “delayed”. in the past we have also seen “fans” abuse club photographers, club legends and more recently, the daughter of Geordie Armstrong.

These people are not fans. They are hangers on. They are something nasty you step in occasionally. For some reason they associate themselves with Arsenal and their behaviour is disgusting.

The majority of these fans seem to be Tweeting from abroad. None of them have ever been to a game.

All true Arsenal fans will know and thank Ken Friar OBE for his work for the club over the last 75 years. They will understand those working for the club are just employees and do not deserve abuse. It is vile, and these people need to look at themselves.

Following the Gabriel announcement came some news about an outgoing. Not Sokratis to Napoli but Hector Bellerin to PSG.

It was interesting to watch it unfold on Twitter.

One Journalist broke the news, and then the likes of David Ornstein and Fabrizio Romano jumped on it as if they were breaking it, to keep up the pretence that they actually know what is happening at The Arsenal.

I will probably dedicate more time to discussing Bellerin later in the week.

He has been a fantastic servant to the club for nearly 10 years, and worn the shirt with honour and dignity. If he and the club decide it is time for Bellerin to start a new journey, then so be it.

Enjoy your Thursday.

Keenos

Do Arsenal risk squad disharmony with 8 potential “new signings”

“8 new signings” would be crazy turnover for a single summer. Nearly 1 third of the squad. But having been sensible in January, this is the situation Arsenal could be in this summer.

If all goes well, Arsenal could add Gabriel, Thomas Partey, Dani Ceballos & Amadou Diawara to the confirmed summer signings of Willian, Pablo Mari and Cedric Soares.

Add in William Saliba and that will be 7 new signings this summer, and an 8th player signed last season but was left parked at his old club for a season.

Usually this amount of turnover would take 6 months for players to settle and gel. But Arsenal’s forward planning means it is a doable transfer window.

Cedric Soares

Joining in January on loan, Arsenal quickly snapped Portuguese right back on a free transfer once his contract at Southampton had expired.

He has already been at the club for nearly 7 months, training with team mates. With 5 appearances in the bag for Arsenal and 120 Premier League appearances under his belt for Southampton, he will not take any settling down what so ever.

Pablo Mari

Like Cedric Soares, Pablo Mari joined Arsenal on loan in January before a deal was completed in June.

Due to injury, he has played just 3 games for Arsenal in the 7 months he has been at the club.

But that 7 months takes out the usual half year a player takes to settle.

When he returns to full training, he will not require any integrating into the squad.

Willian

339 games for Chelsea, 234 in the Premier League. The only thing Willian will need is how much further London Colney is round the M25 from Cobham. About 45 miles.

He might not have played for Arsenal previously, but there will not be too many players who have played more Premier League games than him next season.

Dani Ceballos

Hopefully we get a deal over the line for Dani Ceballos – whether it is a permanent deal or another loan deal.

Having now played 36 games for Arsenal, the axis of Ceballos and Granit Xhaka was a key reason Arsenal won the FA Cup.

He might be a “new signing” this summer, but he will not be a new face at the training ground.

William Saliba

Opposite to Dani Ceballos is William Saliba.

He signed permanently last summer, but then spent the season on loan at St Etienne

Saliba will take some time to settle, which is why it is important that club kept David Luiz.

Gabriel

Not yet done but Arsenal are hopefully of getting the deal over the line.

Gabriel will be in the same boat as William Saliba. A new face in the training ground.

David Luiz will be key helping Gabriel and Saliba settle.

Thomas Partey

Atletico Madrid midfielder would be a big coup for Arsenal. He will be another new face.

Amadou Diaware

Likewise Diawara will be a new face.


So Arsenal could make 7 new signings this summer, with William Saliba being an 8th new player. Yet of the 8, only 5 would have not yet played for Arsenal and be a new face in the training ground, and of those 5, 4 come with no Premier League experience.

I would usually worry about so many new signings. But with half of them now being new faces, Arsenal would have improved the squad without too much disruption.

We just then need to lose half dozen players (Sokratis, Rob Holding, Ainsley Maitland Niles, Matteo Guendouzi, Lucas Torerria, Alex Lacazette) to make space for them.

Onwards and upwards.

Keenos

Willian likely but Zaha not as ITKs use Wikipedia as a source

Morning.

So is today the day we buy Willian?

Could it be one of those ones where we are expecting us to announce Willian and we end up announcing Coutinho, Gabriel Magalhães or some other player?

Interestingly, Gabriel Magalhães (yes, I am copy & pasting his name) was left out of the Lille squad for a friendly.

I would still be surprised if we signed the central defender with Pablo Mari and William Saliba recent arrivals. But him joining would also highlight why Mikel Arteta was so desperate for David Luiz to stay.

Luiz could be key in helping his countryman settle.

In recent days we have had European football on the tele, and I could not care less.

I am actually happy that Olympiakos knocked us out of the Europa League. It allowed us to finish the season on the high of the FA Cup. A nice ending to the season.

Teams still in Europa potentially have another 3 games still to play, with the final not for another 11 days on 21st August. The Champions League final is 2 days later.

When you consider the new season starts on 12th September, teams still in Europe will potentially have a little more than 2 weeks off.

It will all be worth it if you lift the trophy at the end of it, but it is a hard slog to end up trophyless.

I am pleased our season finished with the high of the FA Cup win.

On a lighter note, I stumbled across one of those weird Twitter accounts that just copy and paste news headlines all day long. Their bio says they share “Reliable Arsenal FC News” and then they tweet this…

Bit of advice. Wikipedia is not a reliable news source! Do not do what I did 15 years ago and use it as a source in coursework for your law degree.

We have been linked with Wilfried Zaha again after he pointed to a “Zaha to Arsenal sign”. We have already outlined why Arsenal will avoid signing Zaha.

A few former Arsenal youngsters are performing well across Europe.

Jeff Reine-Adelaide and Ismaël Bennacer doing well at Lyon and Napoli alongside Serge Gnabry at Bayern Munich. Might do a blog this week on how youngster should move away for 1st team football rather than sign a new contract and spend 5 years on loan (ala Chelsea).

Neither of these players looked great in an Arsenal shirt. Both took a step down when leaving, got the first team football they desired and are now performing well at a decent level.

More on that later in the week.

Cricket was great.

Have a good day.

Keenos