What Arsene has created, let no man tear apart

Over here in the good ole US of A we had a veritable cornucopia of decent football to watch yesterday and despite my misgivings about international play and despite the fact that the other team was a pack of blue shiat-kickers, I had a decent day recovering from my hangover and watching footie.

The highlight of the day, by a huge stretch, was the USA v. Mexico match. These games are always a hotly contested affair and despite that, over the years the teams have developed a deep respect for each other. Played in New Jersey, the crowd was largely Mexican and it showed as the roar of the crowd grew louder with each successive goal of the 5-0 trouncing that El Tri handed out to the Americans.

Well, I say “El Tri” but really it wasn’t three players, just one, Carlos Vela. Vela came on as a 45th minute sub and if you watched the match and you’re an Arsenal supporter then you can’t help but be excited for the upcoming season. All Vela did was single-handedly destroy the USA team, he did it with great dribbles, perfectly times runs, great passes to set up his teammates, and oh yeah I nearly forgot, a goal of the highest quality. Watch it, watch it again, and then lick your chops at the prospect of that kid filling in when Arshavin needs a blow next season.

It was an audacious goal. The kind of goal that only top, top quality strikers produce and if think about the pairing of hard work from Bendtner setting up players like Vela and Arshavin and van Persie around him, again, the prospect of next season is delicious indeed.

And I don’t even have to mention Eduardo, who is scheduled to play today, and who many have seen in practice with the club this last week and remarked about his fitness and pure quality.

Save the money, Arsene, you don’t need another striker.

The other match, between Chelsea and Club America, I watched simply to see Chelsea lose, which I knew would take a miracle. Alas, once the blues put in their first goal, it was over, Club America just didn’t have the quality up front that a club like Mexico or Arsenal have that will get them back into the game. The game itself was a snoozer, Chelsea weren’t playing very well and looked slow and unfit but what I was amazed to see, and I’ve watched a couple of their games, is how many Americans will turn up, paint their mowhawk blue, and cheer on a bunch of has-beens like Shevchenko.

This got me to wondering about something Gazidis mentioned in his interview with Arseblogger, that the Arsenal brand is regarded by many as underdeveloped, or undercaptialized. I understand that we have a tradition of playing in Austria but I’d like to see Arsenal use this period to play in America, or Asia, or really anywhere but playing Sozemnobody Austria. The connections are already there, with the Colorado Rapids being our sister team and all.

I’ve been banging this drum for some time now. It’s not ideal, ideal would be getting Americans and Asians and Africans to the Emirates stadium, but a pre-season tour of the USA or some other untapped market would do wonders to bring new fans to the game and to our club. After reading what Gazidis said about it, I’m confident he’s already on the situation. After all, the club is run like a business and touring the world is standard business practice for big sports teams the world over.

Which brings me to my last bit; the board pissing match that’s going on right now. At the time when the club needs everyone who loves her to stand behind the manager and the players and get excited for the season, we instead have a sneaky Russian billionaire trying to drive a wedge between us so that he can gain a little more power. Make no mistake about it, that’s what’s going on. Stung by the rejection of his latest power grab, the rights issue, Usmanov is now apparently calling in his marbles from his friends in the press and, as was reported here yesterday, has had some know nothing friend give some “interview” to the BBC. Well, look, the guy said that “Adebayor averaged 20 goals a season” how seriously can we take someone who is that profoundly stupid? Why are we letting them rile us up?

The facts are that despite the debt Arsenal are insanely profitable, in fact, I believe that Arsenal are the only team in the EPL that is actually earning money every year.* Over the last 4 years, Arsenal have earned, after taxes, over £100m. Yes, they have banked most of it and are using it as an emergency fund, but that’s standard procedure in a business. Moreover, the amount of debt seems large, over £400m for both stadiums, but the loan servicing on that debt is tiny, due to the fact that the board negotiated an insanely favorable interest rate prior to the banks all collapsing.

With the sale of Adebayor at £25m, a player who so desperately did not want to be at Arsenal that he rang up Chelsea and Man U and begged them to take him before he went to his 5th choice club in Man City, and with the potential sales of Toure and Eboue (another £20m+) the boss has plenty of money at his disposal. In fact, Arsenal have broken two records in two consecutive transfer windows in getting Arshavin (over-all record) and Vermaelen (defensive record). They did that without selling, hardly the stuff of a cash strapped team.

So, let’s put to bed, once and for all, the notion that Arsenal need a cash infusion to compete. This club has the talent to compete with every other club in the EPL, we have 5 world class strikers, 5-6 world class defenders, and 3 world class midfielders. We have a supporting cast of players who would bring tremendous class to any starting XI in the world as evidenced by the fact that Fiorentio are openly courting Eboue.  And we have a manager of the highest quality, a man who has won more for Arsenal than any other.

We don’t need more money, what we need more of is club unity, we need to gather around the manager who has won us more trophies than any other. We need to gather around his players, the guys like Carlos Vela, who score goals of the highest quality. And we need to raise our voices in unison and sing:

We love you Arsenal, we do
We love you Arsenal, we do
We love you Arsenal, we do
OOOOOHHHHH ARSENAL WE LOVE YOU.

It’s going to be a good season, folks, let’s not taint it with drivel from people who don’t have Arsenal’s best interests at heart.

*If someone could confirm this in the comments, I would appreciate it.

67 Comments on What Arsene has created, let no man tear apart

  1. Tim – great observations, about everything!

    One comment about Arsene. It seems he always leverages Arsenal position in his negotiations. Selling Ade gave Arsenal the financial upper hand when considering future players at other clubs. He can respond to their asking price by saying, I am looking at other options, and they know he has the funds to go elsewhere.

    Yes, the 09/10 season will be the metamorphosis of Arsenal.

  2. As for the stadium debt, as you alluded to, I believe it’s basically a very favorable interest rate mortgage (perhaps 30 years). I’m not sure if it’s a non-recourse loan or not, meaning that should the club default on this “mortgage”, the bank could only assume ownership of the stadium itself (not the club, its trademarks, etc), so I’d be curious to understand that. If it is non-recourse, then I guess the club would view this related debt the same way we all view our mortgages on our homes. Yeah, it’s debt, but the bank’s really only got a lien on the home, not your other assets (like a car).

    What I don’t fully understand is what level of debt exists, outside of the stadium-related debt. We all hear about the Highbury Square development, which I think the club claims is again separate from the football club entity. However, the development loan is due very shortly and there is this need/hope to refinance this loan in order to buy more time for the club to receive all sale proceeds on these units. In reading other blogs, mention has been made as to the club’s claim that 90+% of the units are sold, but what does this mean? Can the people that wish to buy these units get the requisite financing? It doesn’t seem to me egregiously misguided to wonder if the club is hoarding its cash in light of the uncertainty surrounding the development loan refinancing. Again, the club says this is all separate from football operations, which may be true from a legal standpoint, but in reality, they really are not independent of each other. Point is, from what I’ve read from the club, it’s difficult to understand what is happening on the Highbury Square front.

    Lastly, what I also really want to know is what is the debt outstanding at the club, not related to the stadium and not related to Highbury Square. The net income being generated at the club can surely service additional interest expense, which tells me that ultimately the club would be capable of a few major signings over the next few years. I have to believe that outside of the stadium mortgage and assuming the real estate development project ultimately gets put to bed, the club could easily take on some additional debt to add some major players to contribute to the club challenging for the title over the next five years. Again, I think supporters are most frustrated by simply not comprehending the financial situation, rather than by the sheer lack of major player purchases.

  3. Dude, your blog is the only blog about Arsenal, who have all the positive things to say.
    not some shitty arsenal action blog. whose been behind arsene’s ass for everything and for no bloody reason. He is writing his blog as if he is a footie guru.FOR such bloggers STFU.

    UP THE GUNNERS

  4. ArseChicago,

    It’s even better than that. The debts are secured against the gate receipts and not against the stadium itself. So the banks can neither take over the club nor the stadium. They can only take their chunk straight from the receipts. I recall that this was the first ever deal of this type in football.

    Regarding Highbury Square, the board recently said that they have “a cunning plan” to resolve the debt situation there.

    Aside from stadium debt and Highbury Square, Arsenal have net assets, as has always been the case – Arsenal has never run an overdraught in its history – it’s just not “the Arsenal way”!

    Matt

    • Re: America, they defended and played well. It took chelski a vela-type of player (di santo) to crack their defense. I must say that it would have been terrific to watch our mighty Arsenal in action instead of boring WC Milan. I dont know tho if a tour at this stage of pre season only for biz reasons will benefit the squad. I guess it can all be thoroughly planed. What time is the game today? If anyone is watchin, please post some commentary !

    • Great info. I’m certainly in favor of the club’s prudence during this clearly manic period of unsustainable spending.

  5. At last, a blog where people actually talk sound common sense instead of slagging each other off. I agree with what’s been said about the servicing of the debt, and let’s not get despondent that Arsene prefers to do his transfer dealing in private rather than in the media.

    • @Bridgers, We get a few people who jump on me or others in the comments, but then we just ignore them!

      That’s the best way to deal with a troll.

      Thanks for the compliments and keep reading.

  6. Although I think you are a little on the optomistic side with your financial analysis and the the number of ‘world class’ players we have, I do like the positivity you have (your american side I s’pose).
    As much as the fans are entitled to their opinions, and nobody is above criticism, I find the self harming brand of blog baffling in the extreme. Some ‘fans’ seem to find it so painful to support the Gunners that they really should avoid the stress and take up fishing.
    Me? I love the roller coaster that is the life of a gooner.

  7. Very positive stuff and I think more of such is needed. I really believe this to be our year. If we sell off Toure and Eboue as well, our only exposure to the ill timed ACN is Alex Song. I am also hopeful that Arsene will buy a defensive midfielder to cover. Its better from negotiations perspective to let the market cool down after the Man City and Real Madrid dealings.

    • @PG,
      I completely disagree with your transfer ideas although I admit they seem to be opinions held by the majority of Arsenal fans.
      For one Touré was central to our 20+ unbeaten run in the league last season so he should not be let go.
      Eboué was played out of position most of the season and while he made some glaring errors, his determination and the fact that he’s an excellent replacement for Sagna, means he is vital cover for our oft injured right back.

      Besides the players that we have already let go, I think it would be a disaster if anyone else left, this young team need the bonds they have created with each other to hold firm.

      As for the defensive midfielder thing, I could’nt agree less, again the unbeaten streak I cite as an example and I guarantee you Arsene won’t be buying one, I would bet my entire life savings on that.

      Arsenal are an attacking team and those semi final games we lost were down to inexperience, a couple of mistakes, some bad luck and the fact that our squad was devestated with injuries to our key defensive players, something Arsene sought to rectify with the addition of Vermaelen.

      We had a poor start last season and again a huge section of gooners began crying out for a DM in january, what happened? He bought Arshavin and attacking player and our entire season changed for the better.

      In my opinion, last season we were lacking the goals Adebayor and Eduardo should have scored but didn’t due to lack of effort and injuries.

      We have an exciting season ahead of us and I don’t think we need to add anything to our team, but as Van Persie stated recently an extra striker would be good cover and allow for greater attacking options.

      We have enough quality to beat any of the top four (everton included because theyre consistently 5th) as has been proven, I just hope our attacking players can grind out the results against defensive minded mid table teams. It would be nice to have an extra striker like Huntelaar (not gonna happen) who relishes a crowded box, as another option.

  8. I AM IN COMPLETE AGREEMENT WITH THIS ARTICLE AND WOULD ADD THAT THE QUICKER THE RUSSIAN AND FRIEND SHUT UP (EVEN BETTER STILL GO)THE BETTER FOR ALL CONCERNED

  9. Sensible and well written article.

    If you are like me I am seriously fed up with the moronic blogs from last season and so far pre-season from those who constantly criticise Wenger.

    There is no other manager who has the Arsenal set up at heart and is the heart beat of the club other than Fergie.

    Yes there will come a time like at Man U that a replacement will need to be found but I am sure that is already in place for when that day arises.

    I cannot wait for those ungrateful supporters to eat humble pie when and hopefully Wenger adds some silverware but maybe they still will not be satisfied until Wenger says I do not need this crap and walks away then all we will have is crocodile tears.

    It would be good for Wenger to read your article as it might just make him feel that the majority believe.

  10. i only watched the 2nd half of the us mex game and basically vela had a hand (or foot rather) in nearly all the goals the headline should have read VELA defeats US. Im really optimistic about this season

  11. Tim, Great post. It is a known fact that Arsenal is the only club amongst the top four who is actually making a profit every year. We pay our entire staff (including all players) out of our generated income. Arsenal does not borrow to finance transfers, not our way. I am not aware of any other club in the EPL that makes a profit yearly. May be there are; I am yet to hear it.

  12. Good post, although Wenger has repeatedly stated that he would rather prepare for the season seriously than go on preseason tours of far away countries. I imagine this is somewhat of a recruiting tool as well, as he can tell players they won’t have to travel all over the place at the end of their ever shorter summer breaks.

  13. It saddens me that one of the more sensible pieces written about AFC comes from across the pond! No disrespect meant, but over here all we get is a bunch of losers lambasting all and sundry over the team’s failure. I believe we have an excellent squad and a fantastic group of young players coming through. Yes, I would like to see one or two changes, but I have faith in AW. Vela will be a big start next year, as will Arshavin, and watch Clichy and Sagna have a good season. I am still a little nervous about the CD, but hope Djourou will step up to the plate with our new boy at his side. If Kolo leaves then we still have Gallas, and they didn’t play well together last season. I will be celebrating at the end of May!

  14. Tim- Is it still too late to get in on the shirt deal? Also, a pat on the back is in order for you. The blog is exploding because you have intelligent things to say and don’t use the site as a soap box to say how the club should be run. That kind of shit is why I will never read le grove again, its a quality blog but so damn negative. Kepp it up, pal.

    I said Vela would be a star in that game and he was. I think we’ll definitely see him get some PT on the 12th at Azteca.

    Mexico has a lot of good players and I’m surprised we don’t see more of them in europe despite their lack of size. Vela will see the field more this year and I would be hesitant to add another striker unless we can get a good deal on someone with established world class talent. If kolo goes (which I don’t think he will) we obviously need someone in that department, but is cattermole good enough? And I still think we need someone in the middle who can forge an good partnership with Cesc and win balls. Wenger had guts to bench Gilberto, but Flamini and Cesc had the midfield on lock when they played together.

    I took a beating from my amigos over that US-Mexico game this morning, it was embarrassing to watch.

    I think Gadzis knows the US Market well enough and he and Kroenke have enough connections over here that I would put money on an American Arsenal tour in the next few years.
    Its 77 and raining in Tennessee and 105 and in Seattle, what’s up with the weather?

    Have a good one, gooners. Guns up!

    • @615Gooner, I might have a shirt it depends. I think probably 10% of the people who said they wanted one will back out and I made extra orders anyway, just for folks like you.

      I’ll let you know when the actual orders get paid for.

  15. The Arsenal finances are in good condition. The reason I know this is that Arsenal had their accountants prepare a statement for the board to justify declining the rights issue of Usmanov. If the board were not satisfied w/ Arsenal’s condition then they could have/would have looked w/ more favor on the Usmanov plan. Usmanov’s plan went down in flames hence the latest pip squeak noise on the ‘impartial’ BBC show.

    Today’s game is at 13:00est. There will be streams showing this game.

    Dos Santos has had a good tournament. But when teamed w/ Vela, he had a great game. Vela was simply electric and allowed a good player like Dos Santos to take his game to a higher level. It’s a theory of mine that when young Arsenal players go to their national teams they are frequently unable to reproduce their quality play because their team mates are in capable of playing at their level (pace, technique and game positioning). The coaching too also has to be a drag especially in England w/ someone like Pierce at the U21s.

    Dos Santos is victimized by being at Sp**s and last season on loan at Ipswich. The same can be said for Barazite at Derby. The games I saw him play in were painful to watch. He was an island unto himself w/ the Derby players unable to play w/ him in an intelligent manner. The same can be said for Bendtner when he was at Birmingham City. Some veteran retread player (Andy Cole) at Birmingham City had the nerve to say Bendtner would could be a better player when he learns how to play w/ the team. He should have said Birmingham City could be a better team when they learned how to play w/ Bendtner.

  16. I have to say all this we are prepared to wait and we shouldn’t spend money but keep it in the bank smacks of people who dont put there hand in there pocket every year for a season ticket(The Highest in Europe).The people i know who spend there hard earned are sick to death of Wenger and the board and there penny pinching.We have 1 world class player in the squad and have turned into a seling club to pay of the debts on a block of flats we are a football club for gods sake.The club is being mismanaged by the borad and is being set up for a takeover at the right moment for them and not the clus as a whole.

    • @Matt, What are you really on about? I bet the people you know are all on Le-Grove or Arsenal Action. Do yourself a favour, don’t visit those blogsites any longer.

      Arsenal football club is in a better finacial state than most premiership clubs. Highbury Square is owned by a separate company which, even though is owned by the Arsenal, cannot impact on, nor does it have any recourse to the football club.

      Stop reading trash. Get a grip. This blogsite is not a negative site. Support the team or take a hike.

  17. I am of 2 minds about Arsenal “Comining to America”. On the one hand I would love to see the team in person. On the other hand I respect Wenger’s right to dictate how his team prepares for the new season. With that said, Man U, Chelsea and Liverpool have all been in the trophy hunt or actually won something after spending their preseasons abroad.

    It should be noted that all those teams that go abroad are weighed down w/ debt that far exceeds ours and none of those clubs have a sustainable financial model for repayment of that debt. They only talk about refinancing their debt to extend it like Liverpool just did.

  18. sence at last, well done. by the way Matt this site is for Arsenal Fan not For Negative people like you who never see anything good in arsenal. Good Blog Keep it up

    • You meen it’s for people who follow from a distance without forking out £2500 ground a year following the team.I have supported Arsenal for longer than you have been alive probably son.

      • @Matt, I travel to London every year at great personal expense and watch matches in person. If spending money is the only measure of true supporters I easily spend as much money as you do following this club.

        I’ve been a red level member for 4 years and if I lived in London, I would beg, borrow, or steal to be a season ticket holder. And if I was a season ticket holder the last thing I would do is denigrate others because they aren’t “real fans” unless they go to games in person.

        Real fans can be found anywhere, at the Famous Cock in London, at a pub in Dublin (like Arseblogger), in an apartment in Catalonia, at Doyle’s in Tacoma, my house, or on this blog.

        We all bleed when Arsenal loses and cry when Arsenal wins. Sorry pal, your season ticket doesn’t entitle you to tell the rest of us we aren’t “real fans.”

        Besides, what joy do you get from tearing the team apart all the time? Criticism is fine, I have said for quite some time that I’d love to see a new signing in midfield, but criticism and constant wingeing are two different things.

        This is a hell of a team and I am dead excited to get to London for a match, hell I’l even buy you a pint when I get there. If Wenger wants to buy someone then I will welcome them but if he doesn’t, I’m not going to pretend that I’m a better talent scout than Arsene Wenger.

        • @Tim,

          Tim. you are the best. I proudly wear my arsenal colors because they are the team I support, love, and obsess over. Most of my friends couldn’t name an EPL team besides Chelsea, Manc, Liverpool, or maaybe Arsenal, but that does not make me less of a fan. I pay every year for the super dumpy FSC steaming package, and never get upset when the match crashes four times, I just restart my computer.

          Arsene knows best what to expect from this team, especially from players like Ramsey, Denilson, Song, and Diaby. They are better central midfielders than most teams have in their starting XI. This team should be good enough to seriously challenge for trophies (hell, last year we nearly pulled off the CL and the FA cup) and I would be a bit surprised if they didn’t.

          Oh Arsenal we love you.

        • @Tim,
          Well said Tim. I am a late discoverer of your blog after perusing the like of ACLF and Untold Arsenal, I am delighted in finding another true supporters blog. Unfortunately, the trolls seem to take an ungodly interest in posting to such blogs. I have yet to understand why.

  19. Matt, pick another username, people are going to start confusing you with me.

    Mannone
    Eboue
    Toure
    Djourou
    Traore
    Djourou
    Denilson
    Ramsey
    Song
    Wilshere
    Eduardo
    Bendtner

    A little worrisome that Rosicky isn’t even on the bench.

  20. Matt – where do you get ‘penny pinching’ from? I call it stunning financial management; we have just broken the club record for a player (AA) and now a defender (TV) paid for by selling off a lazy want-away striker for £25m!

    Tim – I have been a fan of Vela since he arrived; that boy needs first team action and fast. Super player.

  21. The Hungarians look fitter than Arsenal.

    Dudu looks like he is going to puke.

    Give credit to the Hungarians, they are passing well, moving the ball around, attacking, and should have had a goal if it wasn’t for a rather dubious offside call.

  22. Just a reminder, there are two Matts.

    I am the longtime poster Wenger fanboy. Just FYI.

    Beautiful run by Traore and a great cross and a great finish from (GASP) Bendtner.

    One-nil to the Arsenal!

  23. Man this article gave me immense pleasure purely for the fact it reflected the very truth that I have been believing even in these tough times for Arsenal.If there is no positive faith & energy nothing positive is going to happen .What we do need to do is to infuse the same

    • @Matt, Emirates Cup this weekend will be the real test. none of this Sunday kick around defense since therr will be actual European clubs playing. I think we’ve been doing decently in these pre-seasons so far but the competition is Mickey Mouse at best so it’s not a good measuring stick. Haladas’ pitch looks sketchy though which might contribute to the questionable passing.

    • @WC, like I said the other day, I think that’s so he can get Vermaelen maximum playing time with his real CB partners whilst also whipping Sendy into shape for his inevitable transfer.

  24. This sight is all about sharing perspective and opinion. Some do a better job of supporting their opinions with facts.

    There is nothing wrong with ‘anyone’ taking another position, actually it only stimulates debate.
    As most of us remember this slogan: If you don’t support the President, you are UNPATRIOTIC.
    Intimidation of free speech.

    Tim is right. If someone is being a troll, you don’t give them the satisfaction of a reply.

    Now, back to reality of our pre-season. Half-time 4-0. Eduardo and Bendtner 2 goals each.
    The more I see of Bendtner, the easier it is to forget …………… ??????

  25. I’ve noticed we’ve been taking more chances outside the 18 in these pre-seasons than we probably did all of the 08/09 season. I hope we keep up this trend in 09/10 – I’ve always thought it was one of the attacking options we’ve seriously overlooked.

  26. we don’t need a striker

    can only get away with playing 3 or 4 out of

    RvP, rosicky, vela, bendy, eduardo, walcott, arsh, nasri

    that’s a headache alraedy…

    then there’s ramsey, barazite and wilshire who all need some games this season

  27. i agree with you 100% again. top blog, already one of my favorites, like it how ur positive unlike other blogs. keep it up mate!!

  28. Back on finances, here’s today’s story re: Liverpool’s finances.

    http://soccernet.espn.go.com/news/story?id=663383&sec=england&cc=5901

    As this story shows, any new refinancing is certainly going to require the infusion of equity on behalf of the owners. In Liverpool’s case, it had to infuse 60MM pounds to roll over the debt for another year. And I have to believe that the rate has gone up from what it was previously. Similarly, I think Arsenal’s board must be anticipating having to put in equity dollars to permanently retire some of the Highbury Square debt, in lieu of refinancing 100% of it. Obviously the foray into real estate was ill-timed, but what’s done is done. But, again, I think this does help explain Arsenal’s relative conservatism on the transfer front over the last handful of years. All that aside, you know Liverpool and Man U’s ownership are green with envy over how and when we got the new stadium done. As American sports fans know, spending money isn’t a guarantee of success. Even though we’ve not really spent the money, the truth of the matter is, any serious fan knows Arsenal is a legitimate contender for the league.

    • @ArseChicago, Pretty good, but to be honest he didn’t have to do much, surprizingly Senderos played the DM role and kicked ass, anytime the ball entered his zone he took it whether from an opposition player or intercepted pass, he won every tackle and even set up some of the chances on goal.

      I was thouroughly impressed.

      • I heard he was put at DM. While I would guess its merely for fitness, one never knows with Wenger. If he ends up playing a 4-2-3-1, you could see Big Phil out there perhaps, as one of the 2. Unfortunately, these are the things we must ponder at this point of the year.

    • @ArseChicago,

      he had a couple of good clearances….looked aggressive and focused. btw, i’m assuming you all know the pre-season games are on ATVO. at $5-something a month, it’s a no-brainer…

      @Tim….great post.

  29. Nice game to continue to work the kinks out.
    Arshavin a little off today.
    Senderos on in the 2nd at DM. Gave away 1 FK. Some poor passes. Broke up some plays. Needed to control the ball for possession when he did break up attacks but hey it is a new position for him.

  30. i had great seats to the usa mexico game yesterday (right at the center of the park, 20 rows up) and it was was amazing seeing carlos vela from so close do his damage. i was praying that the mexico coach brings him before the 2nd half and lo and behold, me and my arsenal loving friend were screaming at the sight of him making into the field before the 2nd half whistle. we weren’t disappointed and while i felt bad for the u.s, i left the stadium a proud arsenal fan.

    re: eboue and toure, im not happy at all about losing either of them. we have a habit of being riddled with injury problems. i dont know why wenger would even consider selling eboue since we dont even have a backup for sagna. toure hasn’t been the same for a while now but i think a lot of it comes down to coaching. the way we struggle with set pieces and composure during the closing stages tells me that we need some better coaching in defense. is arsene dilating our defensive depth? if he is, is he going to add some more players? i try not to question him too much but he did say at the beginning of the summer that his main priority is to keep the team together. if that’s the case, why are we selling established players? i totally understand but the ade sale as he needed to go but any sale in the defensive areas without buying someone else who can cover is simply mind boggling.

    • @nycgunner, Don’t worry too much about the defense. Arsene will not dismantle it without a sound reconstructuring plan. And by the way, all talk about selling is still, so far, rumour.

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