Hello there. Start of another week. A start that has been made better/worse for you depending on where you stand after our first game of the season. I have no authority for speak for you but personally, I’m can’t be in better mood. Arsenal is back, win or lose is part of the game, what is there not to enjoy?
As what you all probably have known by now, unless Tony Pulis have tied you up in his shed in the woods for months and have only fed you bread crumbs even though he has a nice, hot roast beef on the table. And sometimes Ryan Shawcross comes over to stay overnight……..maybe you don’t want to know the rest of this story. But yeah, Alex Song is on his way to Barcelona. This is keeping up with our proud tradition started since 2011, to sell 2 of our best players each pre season. Sarcasm? Time for you to grow up and decide on your own.
On one hand, it really doesn’t help to be losing our more experienced players. Players like that Dutch fella and Song could rightly be considered the spine of our team before their respective departures. One may be nearing 30 but Song is still only 25 years old and approaching what could be considered his peak period. It’s a shame really. He has progressed so well throughout the years to what he is today. Of all the youngsters that Arsene Wenger and his staff has nurtured, Song is by far his greatest achievement. The others had talent that was clear to see, not Song. The amount of work that we put into Song and Wenger’s ability to see the potential in him is nothing short of brilliance.
Let’s make this clear. Song is not one of the best players in the world. Neither is he the finest midfielder of his generation, not as a defensive one or an all round one. He came to us as a very average midfielder/defender from Bastia. Even when he first played for us, many would consider him to be one destined to fail and never progress to become a first team material. Yet, Wenger knew what he saw in him and trusted his instinct.
When you compared that to Cesc Fabregas or Jack Wilshere. The former was a prodigy at Barcelona and was always highly regarded at La Masia. He left them to come to us because Barcelona were employing a very different strategy back then in terms of playing staff. Buying instead of pushing players through. When Cesc joined us at the age of 16, he immediately became the best player in the academy/reserves. Even when picked for the first team then, he rarely looked out of place. The same goes for Wilshere although circumstances are different on how he arrived at the club. Throughout the many age groups that he has played for us, Wilshere was also highly viewed and was expected to be the cream of the crop. Again, one who slotted in seamlessly when appeared in the first team.
Song may or may not be end up being better than what he is today. However, there’s no doubt in my mind that he is the single best pet project outcome that Wenger has achieved. From a shaky player to one of the best player in our team. That’s not saying he is better than a Gilberto Silva or a Patrick Vieira. Just that in a comparative fashion, who Song was when he joined us versus who he is now, is a remarkable transformation. It has been suggested recently that his problem may be an attitude related. Which is a little strange considering how other players consider him the joker in the pack. His ability to play in as a centre back or in midfield, will suit Barcelona. He will get games there, that I have no doubt.
On the back of this departure, Nuri Sahin looks to be inching ever closer to playing for us. The Turk has apparently turned down Liverpool because he wants to play for us. It could be because of our playing style or his massive respect for Wenger or maybe he just don’t like Liverpool. Whatever it is, it can only be positive. Hopefully there is a option to buy clause included in the deal. If the move is a successful one, then we have the option to make it a permanent one. Even if not, we would still have been able to utilise him the best we can for one season.
You just hope that people give him a chance. Even Lukas Podolski and Olivier Giroud still needs time to find their feet in our team. Hopefully, it all gets sorted out by this week. The Sahin loan deal, not the new players’ adaptation. Though, it would definitely be great if that too can be achieved.
Exciting week ahead.