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The Highbury Library animted promo v5 350x350

A quick blog today as I have shirt numbers to analyse and tweets to argue against, the usual day for an Arsenal fan. To be honest, I wish I could do that today, instead I have been roped into DIY tasks around the house. Why did I have to grow up? Anyway, enough about that, I wanted to continue along the same theme as yesterday's blog called Arsenal not the only club playing waiting game / Sagna, Santos & Bernard Linked which basically said something along the lines of most clubs act the same way during the transfer window and basically Joe public do not have any idea as to where each club is, in terms of negotiations and why sometimes we have to wait for something to happen or indeed why some transfers happen early.

Today I wanted to have a look at the dates of recent transfers in the past three years, I wanted to go back further but time is against me and quite honestly I got bored of date checking. As well as our last three years I have included Tottenham, Manchester United and Chelsea. Given the hair pulling that we have not secured all our targets I wanted to use today's date as a reference point, today being July 20th.

Season 2010/11

We had signed two players before 20th July and  Sébastien Squillaci to save the day on August 26th. Chelsea brought in 4 new first team players two before and two after July 20th. Manchester United who seem to wrap up business nice and early for the most part signed three players in early July but patiently saved the best until last and snapped up the mercurial Bébé. Interestingly he is still at the club I thought we were the only club who cannot sell unwanted players? Well at least that is the narrative. Tottenham left it late bringing in two of three players in late August. I reckon you could have got some good sports betting offers if you had a flutter on Spurs leaving their business late.

Season 2011/12

This was Arsenal's most troubling summer due to the Cesc and Nasri dance. Five first team players came in during August which is crazy. I doubt we will ever see a summer like that one again. Interestingly Chelsea also signed all four of their players in August. We ended up finishing above our rich West London rivals even though our start was, well.. not great. Manchester United signed all of their players before July 20th and none afterwards. Our funny and embarrassing neighbours from down the road only brought in two players which is unlike them. One early and Sir Scotty of Parker on deadline day.

Season 2012/13

It is no coincidence that the one player Manchester United brought in very late in August was Robin van Persie. A deal that would have taken plenty of negotiations from both parties, we know we played hard ball and I am sure that Manchester United would have loved to have had him in June, I am sure the player would have wanted that also but it is not always down to the buying club and the player (Higuain)

Chelsea continued as ever to bring in most of their players late, I am actually interested to go further back in time and see if this is a consistent trend. 3 of 5 after today's date. Tottenham also went wild late in the window buying four in August. While we did most of our work early. Like Manchester United and Bebe, we saved the best till last securing Santi Cazorla. What a buy!

Here is the list in full


Marouane Chamakh Bordeaux Free transfer 21-May-10
Laurent Koscielny Lorient £8,500,000 07-Jul-10
Sébastien Squillaci Sevilla £3,500,000 26-Aug-10

Yossi Benayoun Liverpool £5.5m 02-Jul-10
Tomáš Kalas Sigma Olomouc £5.2m 07-Jul-10
Ramires Benfica £17m 13-Aug-10
Matej Delač Inter Zaprešić £2.7m 20-Aug-10
Man Utd

Marnick Vermijl Standard Liège Undisclosed 01-Jul-10
Chris Smalling Fulham Undisclosed 01-Jul-10
Javier Hernández Guadalajara Undisclosed 01-Jul-10
Bébé Vitória de Guimarães Undisclosed 16-Aug-10

Sandro Internacional £6.5M 01-Jun-10
William Gallas Arsenal Free 22-Aug-10
Rafael van der Vaart Real Madrid £8M 31-Aug-10



Carl Jenkinson Charlton Athletic £1,000,000 8-Jun-11
Gervinho Lille £10,500,000 11-Jul-11
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain Southampton £12,000,000 08-Aug-11
André Santos Fenerbahçe £6,200,000 31-Aug-11
Per Mertesacker Werder Bremen £8,000,000 31-Aug-11
Mikel Arteta Everton £10,000,000 31-Aug-11

Oriol Romeu Barcelona £3.75 million 04-Aug-11
Romelu Lukaku Anderlecht £13 million 18-Aug-11
Juan Mata Valencia £23.5 million 22-Aug-11
Raul Meireles Liverpool £12 million 31-Aug-11
Man Utd

Phil Jones Blackburn Rovers Undisclosed 13-Jun-11
Ashley Young Aston Villa Undisclosed 23-Jun-11
David de Gea Atlético Madrid Undisclosed 29-Jun-11

Brad Friedel Aston Villa Free 3-Jun-11
Scott Parker West Ham United £5.5 million 31-Aug-11



Lukas Podolski FC Köln £10.9m 30-Apr-12
Olivier Giroud Montpellier £12.9m 26-Jun-12
Santi Cazorla Málaga £16.5m 6-Aug-12

Marko Marin Werder Bremen €8 million 01-Jul-12
Eden Hazard Lille £32 million 01-Jul-12
Oscar Internacional £19,5 million 25-Jul-12
César Azpilicueta Olympique Marseille £7 million 24-Aug-12
Victor Moses Wigan Athletic £7 million 24-Aug-12
Man Utd

Shinji Kagawa Borussia Dortmund Undisclosed 1-Jul-12
Robin van Persie Arsenal £24m 17-Aug-12
Alexander Büttner Vitesse Undisclosed 21-Aug-12

Gylfi Sigurðsson 1899 Hoffenheim £8 million 4-Jul-12
Jan Vertonghen Ajax £9.5 million 12-Jul-12
Emmanuel Adebayor Manchester City £ 5 million 21-Aug-12
Mousa Dembélé Fulham £15 million 28-Aug-12
Hugo Lloris Lyon £12 million 31-Aug-12
Clint Dempsey Fulham £6 million 31-Aug-12


I have removed the inclusion of young players because you lose a bit of context. Younger players, especially punts are easier to sign and most of them are bought early. I also want to inform you that the dates may not be all 100% perfect although I think they are but I have to let you know because data was gathered together from Wikipedia and we know how wonderfully reliable that is.

Final Result

In the last three seasons (not including this) here are the results.

Early Birds

Man U 7
Arsenal 6
Chelsea 4
Tottenham 4

As you may have guessed, Manchester United have been king of wrapping up deals early. Leading the way 7 deals before July 20th. Guess who is second by one transfer? Yup Arsenal FC. Tottenham and Chelsea are both stuck on 4 in the last three seasons

Dithering dawdlers

Chelsea 9
Tottenham 7
Arsenal 6
Man U 3

Nope it is not Arsenal but mega rich Chelsea lead the way with the most amount of late deals even when you include our late shopping dash post Fabregas and Nasri. Tottenham have gotten away Parker free until now, they have been caught out with the second latest buying club of the four. Arsenal are next with twice as many as Manchester United.

Three summers isn't exactly a huge amount of data to provide cast iron evidence but it is something.    

The point of these two pieces has been a little lost on some Gooners, I am not saying that there is no advantage to buying early, clearly there is but the point is that the market is the market, the players, agents and selling clubs all have a say and that each completed deal is separate from the next one. This is the way it works, we have to look further than Arsenal before we throw insults at Dick Law when most don't even know what he looks like let alone how he performs in his job.

If past history is anything to go by then Chelsea and Tottenham will go crazy in the next few weeks and Manchester United have completed all their business.

Hold your fire Gooners, quick the quaking, signings will happen soon.

'till tomorrow.

  • 15 Sep 2015
    So let me stop reminiscing of days gone by and let me focus on our Welsh wonder. Let me start off by saying that I think it is quite obvious that Aaron Ramsey is better in central midfield. His partnership with Mesut Özil, his running from deep and his underrated ball winning ability makes him a ...Read more