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cubeadvance
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It’s a sign of where we are I guess, but it makes no sense to buy the duff striker a club you’re trying to catch is selling. Especially when they’re in the market for the two best centre forwards in world football. £20m maybe, but you’re basically buying someone to fulfil a homegrown criteria rather than add anything to the starting line-up. Which I guess is the same as Ramsdale when we look to be happy to spend a king’s ransom on a very poor second choice keeper. We’d be better served getting a tune out of the English lads we have a spend more wisely abroad I reckon.

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I almost can't comprehend the sheer shitness & shortsightedness of selling Emi Martinez for £20m, signing some crap Icelandic keeper for £1m who couldn't even get in his French Ligue 1 team cos we're clever, then 1 year later getting bid up by Sheff Utd to over £30m for Ramsdale, who has not really ever looked any great shakes.

 

There are multiple downsides to being run so badly in recent seasons, the obvious ones you see on an ongoing basis on the pitch but then you hit a point where clubs & players can smell your desperation and you get shafted on both ends of deals, letting players who want away go cheap and overpaying in fees and wages for players to come. 

 

 

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White looks a better bet of the 2 but you have to factor in we change all the coaches, the manager and all the players but as soon as a defender pulls on our shirt they go daft for some reason, Saliba went mad just wearing one on the training ground and was so poor never got a sniff at playing for us. 

 

Ramsdale I just can't fathom at all, he looks poor and it's an awful lot of money, it's finished article money not potential. For a club with a dire record of signing & letting go keepers its the latest calamity.

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  • 2 weeks later...

The whole idea of these friendlies was completely daft from the get go so this was inevitable really. Any sort of injury to Partey coupled with the AFCON will mean that's two seasons of minimal club football for him which would be less than optimal. I'm really struggling to gather any enthusiasm for the new season at this point as we've got problems right through the squad that we've run out of time to sort out. Imagine another year of Elneny and Xhaka as your midfield.

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One of the selling points of Partey was he was meant to be invincible and hardly missed a game at Athleti. 

 

Sets foot inside at London Colney and the ghost of About Diaby possesses him and he's become as resilient as Rosicky, Welbeck, Walcott, Ramsey etc etc etc.

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Why are we so shit at selling? You see Chelsea and Liverpool selling young players with 0 premier league games for over £20m and yet we can't get shot of Wilock who's played a lot of premier league football and had a great loan spell. 

 

It's infuriating that we just can't get the market rate for young promising English players, who could do a job for the likes of Newcastle etc. 

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I think it would be a massive shame to move Willock, Nelson and Maitland-Niles on when the players likely to stay in their place have stunk the place out for years on end now.  The market for young English talent is ridiculous and we're seemingly willing to get shot of pretty much the lot for rubbish money. The scenario is that we'll lose the only goal scoring midfielder we have, a good right back and a talented winger and keep Elneny, Bellerin and Willian who are people that should be absolutely nowhere near Arsenal's team at this stage.

 

Arteta simply isn't the custodian we need for the talent at the club. He was forced to play the young players we have through desperation and they showed him and our senior players up badly. Players like Nelson and Nketiah are a struggle to shift now because we gave their minutes to old carthorses instead as we always revert to a safe pair of hands. Another season of drab treacleball though and it won't be Willock who we'll be watching leave but Saka and Martinelli. The stakes are through the roof and as it stands this squad is finishing no higher than 8th I reckon, with probably a stronger second half of the season when we make a change in January.

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Ideally, I'd like to keep Wilock, Maitland Niles and Nelson. But I can't see it. We need to shift players out, but those we desperately need to ditch aren't not going to go. I'm talking Kolasinac, Willian, Elneny, Bellerin and Cedric. 

 

I agree, 8th is probably about right for this squad. 

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Yeah I think that's spot on really, they're the only ones who have any value at all this summer so our hands are tied in that respect. I have a feeling we'll pay a few of the undesirables off towards the end of the window and make space for a big panic buy again though. We could easily be on three defeats by the time the window shuts so the pressure to fix some problems is likely to be huge. 

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I know there are a lot of people think Willock, Maitland-Niles, Nelson and Nketiah aren't good enough and need to be sold to free up funds but these are young players who are academy graduates that haven't had much game time and who've been pretty decent when out on Loan. I doubt they are on big wages, they love the club and most would probably be happy to be squad players for the time being. You only have to look at Smith Rowe and Martínez to see how these types of players can come good. Obviously we have no idea what's going on behind the scenes with agents, attitudes in training etc. but I honestly can't see why someone like Maitland-Niles was played so little last year.

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Football is notoriously poor historically at judging a player, and the rise of data helps somewhat but still makes it hard to judge potential.

 

I don't think Smith-Rowe set trees alight out on loan but was solid enough and got good experience which when his chance came put him in good stead to take it.

 

Willock appears worth a look but his freak run of scoring in 7 games in a row, often from the bench, doesn't make him automatically good enough. 

 

We've seen a lot more of Maitland-Niles and he's always looked a decent lower table player with utility value, but he's not particularly good at anything from what I can see and I'd happily move him on as not sure he'll be good enough for where we want to be. Doesn't he keep crashing his car and turn up late for training too ?

 

Nketiah seems like a player 10y past when the game wanted what he offered, another I don't think fits into a team structure and will only get limited mins in cup games or when injury forces it. 

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I think Maitland-Niles maybe has a problem behind the scenes and Arteta has lost patience with him. So much so we basically destroyed our season forcing a parade of unsuitable players to start at left back and shipped him off into the care of Big Sam. Which is a shame as there's a position at a big club up for grabs and he's blowing his chance. He'll likely end up where you say, as a decent player somewhere near the bottom of the table. I guess all my point is that with him, Nketiah and Nelson they are players with potential, they're homegrown and I'd rather see them than the tosh they'll leave behind. Selling Willock is just a stupid idea in my opinion. For a team with almost literally zero goals across a whole season coming from midfield, we're going to sell a 20 year old midfielder who's already got nearly 25 in first team football? Put it this way, if we were buying him for £20m I'd think that was a clever bit of business. We have a squad rammed full of very predictable players, and he's definitely not that. But can he joylessly recycle the ball around the centre circle for 3 minutes? I suppose that's the question.

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With Partey out, I’d be tempted to start Willock against Brentford alongside Xhaka. He’d give us more movement going forward and if you’ve got Smith Rowe ahead of him, you know he’d drop back when Willock goes beyond the forwards. 

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I just think there are places for all of these players in the squad. Even if they aren't automatic starters right now the whole "move them on because they aren't good enough" logic doesn't ring true with most of them.

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I think I would like to keep only Willock out of this group. We should try and get as much as we can for AMN and Nketiah. Maybe a loan for Nelson wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world.

All that said, ideally it would be nice to get rid of Willian, Bellerin, Cedric, Kolasinac and Torreira first.

All easier said than done of course.

Then get Maddison in to play as an 8 next to Partey and leave ESR as the 10. Then either Lamptey from Brighton or Aarons from Norwich at RB.

Desperately need a number 2 keeper too. Not convinced with Ramsdale, especially for £30+mill.
If there’s still money floating around then sell Laca and bring in a replacement. Martinez would be great but very unlikely. Not Tammy Abraham please. No more Chelsea cast offs.

Bissouma would have been good if Xhaka went to Roma. Better than Sander Berge.

A Xhaka move would have been good for all concerned I think. I would have preferred that.
 

That’s everything I know.

 

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I see Newcastle have put to bed any Willock debate. Seems cheap to me, especially as that’s only 2/3 of the price of the shit keeper we’re looking to buy.


What a dispiriting summer. If Edu ever comes back from his jollies he’s got so much to do it’s unreal. I just don’t understand how we can talk about progression when it feels like we’ve got basically the same team we did from about five years ago, and they still play like they’ve only just met. Whatever anyone thinks of Neves, Maddison or anyone else we’re linked with at the moment, none of them are signals of intent of anything. They’re just easy obvious signings where you keep increasing your offer until you meet the price you were quoted a month before. When you think about the signings and contracts we’ve done in the last couple of years it could make a grown man weep.

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Willock to Newcastle for $20+ million is just Martinez all over again. He’s way down the list of players we should be selling and we’ll regret it when he starts banging goals in regularly.

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The thing with Willock though is I have no idea if he’ll become a guaranteed starter who’ll regularly score goals for us, I suspect he will but that’s speculation. What we all know for sure however is exactly what the players we have left will offer because they’ve underwhelmed for years. As a fan I’d rather we took the gamble. We’ve made such a mistake getting a manager who is so tactically inflexible that if you don’t fit the level of specificity required then you’re out the door.

 

Whilst I’m banging that drum, this move shows what an amateur Edu is too. Willock is the victim because we’re incapable of moving on anyone difficult so we’ve had to sell the one player a club is publicly pleading to spend money on, and even then we’ve sold for a poor fee. Edu should have gone with Raul as he shown us nothing to suggest he’s up to it. I honestly can’t believe how much this club still pisses me off.

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Dunno about Willock, my feeling is that was a freak run and he won't score that many all next season but when you see what Liverpool & Chelsea squeeze out of clubs for their tat that never gets on the pitch in the PL the fee looks very low. 

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Starting to feel that we need to replace Auba now, not in a year’s time. We’ve not addressed our inability to score goals outside of a few players. We couldn’t replace Aubameyang’s goals last season when he was out of form either. 


I’m starting to worry that 8th might be a little ambitious this season.

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He's a bit of a victim of the way we play I reckon, plus I wonder if we're seeing a physical drop off. When he's not scoring he's always been a passenger, but it's so pronounced at the moment it's quite sad to watch. We're sort of trying to play like Pep and striving for a day where we don't start with a 9, which is why Lacazette is mostly seen busily working away as a deep 10 as we spend 3 minutes working the ball to the flanks and eventually dinking it into no-one. There's so much wrong with that plan it's not worth going in to really, but the main problem is that it involves so many players in square peg positions we can't get it to work. Again, the rigidity is absolutely killing us.

 

I sound like a right grump about it, but I agree. I think 8-12 is realistic. Top four is a complete fantasy.

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Will be really interesting to see how the team and Arteta cope with the crowd back.

 

I don't think they're going to wait long before making their feelings heard, especially if the window closes with little transfer movement.

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And by the above, I mean with Arteta's stale, cagey, horse-shoe football. Think the fans will encourage more urgency than we get from the team (which is very little) which I actually think could be a good thing.

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9 hours ago, Gotters said:

We've all forgotten that second half of the season only City accumulated more points than us somehow - but that was down to everybody being shite than us any good. 

 

 

Where's that stat from?

 

If you set the whoscored.com custom table thing to start at the 25th of January and run to the end of the season Chelsea got 38 points from 19 games, Liverpool got 35 from 19 and Arsenal got 34 from 19. 

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