Wednesday, August 4, 2010

No one wants to sell to the Arsenal

"Per remains 100 percent committed to Werder. I have already said this several times. Nothing has changed. Per and his advisers have so far not commented due to a request from us.”

Why don’t any clubs want to sell their players to the Arsenal? So far, we’ve been rebuffed by Fulham for Schwartzer, Werder Bremen for Mertesacker, Fiorentina for Frey, and um... I’m not sure which other players we’ve shown an interest in, but I sure that if we asked about anyone, we’d get a firm “no” from the club.

I’m left thinking that the Barcelona way of transfer negotiations is more effective. Firstly, leak our “interest” to the tabloids. Secondly, get the player to *wink* his interest in playing in the Premier League. Thirdly, complain loudly that clubs shouldn’t hold players against their will. Fourthly, get the player’s agent/wife/brother/parent/grandparent/neighbour to say how the player is a life-long supporter of the Arsenal. And finally, if all else fails, whinge about the tabloid attention getting in the way of a transfer.

I disapprove of the Barcelona way of transfer dealing, but maybe Gazidis should take notes. In his year and a half at the Arsenal, he’s only signed Arshavin, Vermaelen, Wellington, Chamakh and Koscielney. Admittedly, fighting Dennis Lachter over Arshavin was a punishing debut, but the rest of the transfers seemed straightforward. Gazidis hasn’t had to get his hands dirty. He hasn’t had to knee the selling club in the proverbial groin. And while it’s admirable to play nicely, maybe it’s time he learnt to negotiate Catalan-style.

That said, I’m looking forward to seeing how the Arsenal cope with so many kids in the first-team squad. It’ll be “fun” to watch Jacks, Gibbsy, JET, Shezza and the ‘Pong struggle and grow and eventually dominate the Premier League. Sure, we’re going to get the shit beaten out of us for most of the season, but it’ll be worth it in the end.

So on the 364th last day of my 20s, I nearly cracked the shits. I teetered on the edge a couple of times, but held my nerve. It tends to happen around August, usually on a cold rainy day, usually on a Wednesday. I have three more Wednesdays to go in August, and I’m sure each one will be a trial. Think it’s a combination of SADS, lack of exercise, over-work, the GOMD. To paraphrase Herman Melville, maybe it’s time for me to go out to sea....

Call me Ishmael.

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