Back to reality, nearly

Less than 24 hours after I make a statement about how Barcelona would be the preferred destination when Cesc leaves, Joan Laporta is quoted in the press saying how much he’d like to see Cesc in a Barcelona shirt.

I’m sure he would.

What I don’t get is how much outrage everyone seems to have over this quote. Barcelona say this kind of stuff every three months and yes it’s distasteful but as far as I know it’s not illegal. Real Madrid’s President calling Cesc to chat about his progress, that’s illegal. Barcelona’s President saying “I’d like to see Cesc in a Barca shirt” is not illegal. Sure, he’s a jerk for saying it, but he was already a jerk, this is not news!

Besides, we all know and should accept that Cesc will leave Arsenal one day and that his likeliest destination is the club he supported as a kid: Barcelona. Right now, he’s under contract until 2014 and if Barcelona want him, they will have to pay a huge, retarded, sum in transfer fees. Which I highly doubt they will do, especially given the fact that Joan himself says that Barca “have the best midfield in the world” (along with the best keeper!).

So, let’s all calm down and focus in on football, which we shall have on Saturday I say! Saturday!

Saturday, we’ve got Manchester City for a good olde fashioned 7am kickoff. If you’ll remember, City was the last team to beat Arsenal in the Premier League: a run of 17 matches unbeaten. That City game was one of the low points of the season. With the club in turmoil after Cappy Gallas’ outburst, they were outplayed in the midfield by Stephen Ireland, toothless up front, and defenseless in the back. We went to City (who were terrible at the time) and got an old-fashioned ass whoppin as we say in the States.   3-0.

After that, Wenger made some changes. They took a while to take hold but Arsenal are a different team now and not just in terms of players on the pitch, though the addition of Arshavin has proved crucial. Tactically and spiritually this is a different Arsenal side. They have scored 15 goals in the month of March and the club has a belief about them they they did not at the last meeting. I have to think that more than most rematches, Arsenal will be looking for revenge.

Personnel wise, we have our Crozillian back, and scoring goals. And more importantly, we’ve got our young captain and midfield maestro back and raring to go. Wenger is saying that Cesc needs three games to get back to top fitness and the next three games are his best bet: home to City, away to Villareal, and away to Wigan. We should expect Diaby and van Persie to miss at least the Saturday game against City but after that is unknown as there’s no news on those two. Bendtner, on the other hand, subbed in at the 33rd minute in Denmark’s 3-0 win over Albania so whatever injury he suffered on his knee must have healed, right??? And any rumors of Arshavin picking up a knock are false, as he played the whole match against Licktinstien.

And if you want to get REALLY excited, there are rumors that Theo could be fit to face City.

Let’s see, Arshavin, Theo, Cesc, and Dudu? Yes please, I’ll have two!

Finally, in the above link, Wenger also made a remark about how the next 8 matches in 25 days are make or break for this season. It’s true, we’ll have had both legs of the Champions League, 4 EPL matches, and an FA Cup semi-final against Chelsea. Uhh… yeah, that’s slightly important.

But given that all our players returning to top form and have a renewed spirit I feel confident in quoting George W. Bush: bring ’em on.

P.S. Adebayor is fit as well.


  1. As an American, who grew up watching American sports, the whole “let’s not really talk about our players’ injuries” thing is still a very foreign concept to me.

    Why can’t their respective FAs give the press some idea as to the extent of Diaby’s and RvP’s knocks? Is Arsenal in the dark too? If not, why aren’t they being more up front with regard to the injuries?

    Rosicky is a prime example of this…he has been two weeks from returning for eighteen months now.

    When, say, a popular Minnesota Twin goes down, the press is given access to his doctor, his surgeon, his nurse, his wife, his children…

  2. Well Citeh are one of the worst away teams so that plays in our favour already. I hope Nicky and Eddie get on the board against the horrible defense they have over there. Expect Robinho to either eat the bench or be marked out of the game by Clichy – in Clichy I think Robinho has met his match in terms of speed. I love Stephen Ireland but his lackluster midfield partners are pulling him down with them so there’s no more dominance in the middle of the park for him. I expect Theo to make a 15-20 min. cameo just to get his legs going and make Citeh defense even more tired. Perhaps even see Cesc for a small spell to stretch his legs too – let’s hope that Richard Dunne doesn’t go massacre all our players.

  3. Matt:
    It is a very cultural thing. People in western Europe are more private than Americans. It is a slower process to make friends for instance. As a european coming to the States, my first impression was that Americans are extremely friendly compared to France. When I was taking the Paris metro to go to school for 15 years, people didn’t smile and say hi. They kept to themselves. If and when somebody did smile on a rare occasion, my reaction was to think “what the fuck are you smiling at?” I kid you not. Maybe I was a young punk back then 🙂

  4. Yes. I agree with Alex. In south america it is the same. If you smile when you are not supposed to, you get beat up.

  5. richard dunne has gone 10 games without scoring an own goal. it’s just about time for him to score an OG again. come on dunne you shmuck! do it!

  6. Tim said: we have our Crozillian back.

    No, actually, we don’t…

    From the dot com:

    But Robin van Persie (groin), Eduardo (groin) and Abou Diaby (thigh) will be absent after all three picked up injuries on international duty. Samir Nasri (flu) and Carlos Vela (fatigue) may also miss out. But Nicklas Bendtner should be available despite picking up a knee problem for Denmark on Saturday.

  7. nycgunner – How long has it been since his last red card? I think he’s probably due for one of those too.

  8. good question alex. i don’t know but either one of those two from him and i’ll be a happy camper on saturday

  9. I’m looking forward to seeing Theo, Cesc and the Owl in the one team. Imagine the fun we’re going to have this Saturday; 3-1 to the Arse, two for Theo and one for the Owl. I wonder if Adebayor is going to play this week; he’s fit for Togo, so he SHOULD be fit for the Arse. If he’s not starting, maybe Wenger’s gonna bench him for the rest of the season?

    P.S. Wouldn’t “Theo, Cesc and the Owl” be a great name for a rock band?

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