Written by Mean Lean on Tuesday, 08 May 2012 15:20
Not much in the way of news or gossip today on this very quiet Tuesday afternoon *Pwahaha* I jest, I jest. It is all appening dann at the Arsenal today.
The Arsenal May transfer window has swung back open again or so we are to believe. Reputable sources have claimed that 'Arsenal supporter' Yann M'Vila has agreed to sign for Arsenal and he is delighted to be doing so once the actual transfer window opens up.
According to reports his signing will be breaking our previous transfer record. A fee of over £17m is supposed to be what we will be forking out for the 21 year old defensive minded midfielder.
I have watched bits and pieces of him, especially in the last few months but I am not a real expert on his play. I am a little intrigued to know what this signing means to the team next season and what it means for other players in the squad.
I must say the fact that Alex Song only has one more year on his contract and now that we have purchased M'Vila makes me worry a little. I worry that Arsene has made an early move because he knows something that we do not about our current number 17. I bloody well hope not and I hope Alex signs a new deal along with Theo and Robin very soon. It doesn't seem to be the Arsenal way to have life as straight forward as that though.
Should Alex Song stay amd do what is best for his career and most importantly myself then it leaves the question, what is the plan for the midfield in the future?
If this does go through as expected then our list of central midfielders look a little like this
That does not include the youngsters such as Thomas Eisfield, Oguzhan Ozyakup etc. Nice list ey?
I have an abundance of questions and points about our midfield but we have plenty of time during the summer to talk about that and I think saving it until that would be best.
As Squid Boy said on Twitter yesterday, perhaps M'Vila is a longer term replacement for Mikel Arteta and we had to make our move before he was whisked off by evil clutches of clubs elsewhere around Europe.
What I like about M'Vila is his distribution. Quick and accurate at finding players between the lines which is just what we need. Speed of passing is not always Alex Song's strength so you can already see how that would benefit us.
There has been a lot of talk about learning from previous lessons or statements of intent, I disagree. These are in fact signings that have been delayed rather than made early. As Ivan Gazidis said after last summer, we have deliberately kept some powder dry. After the hoo har of waiting for Barcelona and Manchester City to give us what our players were worth and also needing the guarantee of CL cash we went into the market too late to buy the players Arsene wanted.
Moves for M'Vila and Podolski are not fresh moves, these have been deals that the club have been working on since last summer at least.
Basically these are late signings rather than early signings.
As for the statement of intent saying that has flown about recently, I don't see any club buying a player to make a statement but rather to strengthen the current squad to give yourself the best chance possible to finish as high as possible.
Laurent Koscielny for example was an early signing a couple of years back, no statement but an early quality signing to strengthen our squad. Today he is one of the best central defenders in the league and probably Europe. Well, I am biased.
There are a whirlwind of rumours doing the rounds on Twitter and various other blog's and I would advise keeping 'a little bit distance' to it all until something actually happens.
So the official unofficial news is that Pat Rice will be replaced by the man with no hair, Stephen Andrew Bould. A good choice you would think. A man who knows the club well, understands the history of the club. He was a part of the great George Graham defence of the past and has been around the Wenger set up, working with the younger players so he has a great variety of skills to help the coaching staff.
This idea that Pat Rice was just a yes man and should be replaced by someone to 'challenge' Wenger is unfounded, disrespectful and laughable in equal measure. Firstly nobody knows the conversations between Wenger and Rice. Nobody knows what his input is/was on the training ground.
Secondly can you really imagine any good manager ripping up all his plans, his experiences and values because an 'assistant' tells him that his way is wrong? It is ridiculous.
All managers learn from other people, other clubs, other experiences and tweak their teams accordingly but this strange notion that Steve Bould is going to burst into Wenger's office, lay down the law and say 'right we are doing things my way now' is just plain stupid.
Ultimately an assistant will work the way the manager wants him to, whether that be Alex Ferguson, Arsene Wenger or Steve Kean.
It all makes for an interesting new season. Changes are happening. Steve Bould, Jack Wilshere, Lukas Podolski and perhaps Yann M'Vila will all be a part of the new season where as none of them were part of this seasons first team.
But that is next season and (hypocritically) we should not look too far ahead. There is one huge game around the corner, one game that means so much. I think I am bricking it so much that I am avoiding talking about it until nearer the time.
Right, it is getting late. Gotta run, but back tomorrow at some point.
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