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Cool as you like

How have you been? Good I hope. Let’s get straight into it then. Yesterday, the Arsenal Supporters Trust (AST) has a dialogue session with the CEO of Arsenal FC, Ivan Gazidis. You can see them here and here. Plenty of questions were raised but due to the time limitation, not everyone manage to get their question out.

With events like this in today’s environment, it is really hard to have a big open dialogue. Mr Gazidis is aware of the fact and he even explained it in details. I get that. We don’t want the media to put their spin on any matter by virtue of any particular use of a word. I can understand that the supporters who attended the session did not feel that their queries were answered but such is the world we lived in today.

Two major things I managed to pick up watching those 2 videos are the fact the club are doing the best they can to bring in new players. Same goes for the current ones who are going to be shipped out. The second remark is related to the end of season performances where there seem to be a lack of effort or desire on the team’s part to win games knowing that the Premier League title is beyond us. Therein lies a very frank admission on the club’s part that the current playing staff is not up to mark and reinforcement is needed. I’m also pleased to hear that player’s whose career has stagnant and can be considered dead wood will be moved on. Despite the limitations, these are very good sessions between the supporters and the club which should continue in the future.

It’s been a while since I last did any update and there’s been plenty of new stuff going around. Luckily I’ve managed to keep hold some of the stories, some of which are old stories to you but I still would like to give my input on the matter. Jack Wilshere said that Arsenal as a team should put more pressure on the referee ala Manchester United or Chelsea. Not sure how that is going to help us. We’ve seen how referees always stick to their decisions despite being surrounded by players. Perhaps Wilshere is hoping the pressure will have an impact in subsequent decisions.

Every team needs competition. Not only from one team to another but also within the same squad itself. Meaning players can never rest on their laurels in fear that their place in the line-up can be taken by someone else. Yes, there are established international players who are first choice by default but they should be made aware that any drop of form coupled with the progression of a back-up player and suddenly they can find themselves on the bench. Which is why Johan Djourou‘s admission that he doesn’t mind Arsene Wenger going out to sign another central defender because he is willing to fight for his place. An attitude that should be both admired and followed.

There’s a lot of transfer rumours still going on out there. I will just be brief with those;

Going out
Liverpool for Gael Clichy for £6 million – Even if this is his last year of contract, that amount is still ridiculous. Not to mention it is to our rival. Big no to me.
Inter Milan/Besiktas for Nicklas Bendtner – Will find it hard to find more minutes on the pitch if Robin Van Persie continues to stay fit. The same could be said if he moves to Inter. Sadly for the club and for Bendtner himself, a move away is the best thing for both sides.
Manchester United for Samir Nasri for £10 million – Like Clichy, price is too low and to league rival. Would not be a good decision business or footballing wise. Bayern and Chelsea await the outcome. Big no for me.
Barcelona for Cesc Fabregas for £30 million – That offer includes Thiago Alcantara and Bojan. Wouldn’t mind having the two in Arsenal and on the numbers game, this offer is the closest the current European Champions have come to our valuation. An offer that is worth considering but I’d rather not lose our captain yet. So, another no for me. Thankfully, Lee Dixon also agrees with me.

Coming in
Willian from Shaktar for £4 million – A deal which includes Denilson going the opposite direction. Not something many Gooners would oppose. Haven’t seen too much of Willian to be overly excited about this transfer. Standing on the fence for this one.
Raphael Varane from Lens – 18 year old French defender who was a first choice in a team that was  relegated in Ligue 1 last season. Would be hard to expect a teenage central defender to cope immediately in the hustle and bustle of the Premier League. Possibly one for the future.
Scott Dann from Birmingham for £10 million – Looking at this number, you can understand my disgust over the number stated in the Nasri and Clichy rumours. I don’t think Dann is world class quality, more along the lines of the thinking that links Chris Samba to us. No for me here.
Gerard Deulofeu from Barcelona – Another 17-year old from the fame La Masia. If it happens, it happens. Won’t have any impact to our 2011/12 season.

There’s the summary of those new ones we’ve been linked with the past week. That’s all from me today. Talk to you next time.