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Wenger Arfa-ter Lyon Winger

It seems as though Arsene Wenger may be seeking to strengthen his squad in one of it's weakest areas, after admitting taking a fancy to Lyon's winger Hatem Ben Arfa.

Arfa is held in very high regard across Europe and is much sought after by some of the continents premier clubs ........ and Tottenham.

Mr Wenger admitted he'd be interest should the winger become available.

'If Ben Arfa is for sale, then we are very interested,' Wenger told French tv programme Telefoot.

'He is a great player and Arsenal is a potential destination for any great player.'

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The Journalist

Writer: Rocky7 Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Tuesday March 25 2008

Time: 11:04AM

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25/03/2008 11:09:00

I think it will be us two fighting it out for him and Benzema. We'll offer something mental like Makalele, Ben-Haim, Malouda, Pizzarro and Belletti plus £45m for him and Benzema. I'd quite like Sidney Govou as well - good player. Wonder how Juninho Pernambucano would get on in the EPL.
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25/03/2008 11:09:00

LOL Olasal, it wouldnt surprise me. From the little I've seen I'd say Arfa is exactly what we need. You can take Benzema OLASAL, and we'll have Arfa.
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25/03/2008 11:23:00

As he doesn't know whether Ben Arfa is for sale or not is it safe to assume that he hasn't even bothered to make an enquiry?
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25/03/2008 11:25:00

Amos, you should know that we can't believe anything Wenger says publically ..... that wiley ol' fox is always hiding something. lol
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25/03/2008 11:27:00

I dont believe this quote. Wenger has almost never stated his public interest in a player to the public, not in the last 2-3 years anyway. He is always cagey about new signings.
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25/03/2008 11:47:00

Its safe to also say we wont buy him. At the end of the day people have half heard of him. We will buy some sierra leone 16 year old who is the next George Weah for 125,000K
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25/03/2008 11:47:00

hmm seems a bit odd..unlike wenger to publicly discuss transfers
chelski younger
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25/03/2008 11:54:00

If reported acurately, these quotes from AW are very disappointing. Only three days ago he was complaining about Inter tapping up Hleb. Recently he also complained about Bentley's comments about Walcott. We no longer have a leg to stand on in that particular frustration. Talking about other team's players is totally out of order and I hate it when Barca or Madrid announce they are going to sign our players, it's arrogant and disrespectful.
Little Dutch
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25/03/2008 12:12:00

Yeah everyone (even Chelsea fans know the drill now), this is just too good to be true. Ben Arfa is already too famous, i.e. expensive, for Wenger's liking. He's just being nice and complimentary on TV. He only said that cos he knew the player's not for sale, or not for a reasonable enough price anyway. He does say which players are good, e.g. Kaka's exciting, he likes Eto'o, DUH! But not his real transfer targets, as Prits pointed out. I'm inclined to think like Paul_ownz - we'll see a couple of youngsters whose names we can't pronounce, African currently playing in France, or some Eastern European wonderkid from Estonia.
Lou the Gunneress
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25/03/2008 12:31:00

I dont see whats wrong if asked about a player , Wenger saying "i would be interested if he was for sale". Its not quite the same as meeting representatives of the club. If someone asked Wenger if he would like Ronaldo, is he meant to lie and say no?
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25/03/2008 12:34:00

mmm Paul_ownz, I actually think his quote, with Wenger's heavy weight in France, would unsettle the kid a little bit. Who wouldn't want to leave if someone like Arsene Wenger wants him? That's why I think the only (very unlikely) possibility of this being his true transfer target is that he's throwing his weight around and trying to flatter the kid into wanting to leave. That'd give him an upper hand in negotiations over Lyon, and possibly ManU or Chelsea or other big clubs who can offer nothing but money over us. But like LD said, quite true, that's what Barca and Real do all the time with our players and others'. Having said all that though, I don't think it'd prove anything because it's hard to tell just in the translated text what his tone or attitude was. He could just be saying it with a charming smile in his usually diplomatic way, half-exaggarating his "interest" to compliment the player. You know him.
Lou the Gunneress
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25/03/2008 12:55:00

Arfa is what we need.
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25/03/2008 12:55:00

Paul_ownz I know what you're saying, it's a matter of degrees. Sneaking around, meeting reps in a hotel is the worst (and can be fined) > talking publicly, unsettling the player > negotiating normally behind closed doors is how it should be. Pure talk isn't as bad as openly meeting the guy, but is still "tapping-up" to an lesser extent, IF that's his real transfer target.
Lou the Gunneress
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25/03/2008 13:04:00

You guys may not be aware of the background context to speculation re Ben Arfa and his situation at Lyon. Ben Arfa is not happy at Lyon. He and Benzema detest each other. Ade and Bendtner are bosom buddies in comparison. The situation between Benzema and Ben Arfa on the pitch has become so bad that Perrin has stopped putting them on together for a full 90 minutes. Pity, because when they combine together, they're magic. Months ago you'd see the 2 on the same pitch for nearly a full game but the personal animosity started to deteriorate that it began to hurt Lyon's performance. It's something often reported in the French press. (I follow Lyon and French football in general pretty closely). I love both players, tho Benzema is the better player. Personality wise, however, Ben Arfa is much easier to handle. Benzema thinks extremely highly of himself. Benzema has repeatedly said he prefers to stay at Lyon and if he ever left, he'd go to Italy or Spain. He'd be incredibly expensive, AW would never go for him. Ben Arfa, however, is already unsettled but has had fewer offers in comparison to Benzema. Ben Arfa feels (and many fans agree) that his talents are not being used to their best because Perrin has sidelined him in favor of Benzema. All this is widely known in France, AW certainly knows this. All that said, I doubt this is a genuine AW quote. Since the mid-90s I've followed the French football press closely and have seen many quotes from AW, some of which I've believed, some of which I've dismissed as exaggerations or invented. I don't ever recall an explicit quote like this from AW in the French press, it's just not like him.
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25/03/2008 13:32:00

I think we can guarantee that we won't be signing this guy. In fact, I am sure there'll be something on from Wenger denying it.
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25/03/2008 13:34:00

I don't believe this quote for one second. I would love to see him in an Arsenal shirt, but if Arsene wanted him, this is not how he would go about it. Apart from anything else of course it would not exactly be a typical Wenger signing. It's not like Arsene to declare intereest in a player with a contract in the middle of a season. Nothing happening here.
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25/03/2008 13:40:00

i like Telefoot
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25/03/2008 14:20:00

It's all bull I'm afraid, even if Wenger actually said something like that, it's a bluff. How many times has he gone and spent money on a player after he admitted he likes them in public? Never. He knows everyone will go after any player he's interested in, so maybe it's a decoy for somebody else? Who knows? Well, Wenger does, of course. As for Ben Arfa, I've only seen him come off the bench for France a copule of times (I only watch highlights of Lyon in the CL) and that's it. He looked good, but always seems to be in the shadow of Benzema, who is a quality prospect, but he's not what we need. Perhaps Ben Arfa is, I don't know, I haven't seen enough of him, but like I said, don't get your hopes up, there's probably as much chance of Liverpool winning the title! ;-)
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25/03/2008 17:22:00

by some of the continents premier clubs ........ and Tottenham...the only true thing in that article...and personally i see no reason as to why arsenal do not want to go for him..a rw is just what you need!
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25/03/2008 17:27:00

I never queastion mr wengers signings because most of them end up becoming the best players in the world however what are the odds on wenger paying more than 10mil for a player?
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25/03/2008 17:31:00

this is silly,because we already have a quality left sided winger/striker ready to join us, the mexican boy wonder Vela.
fran merida
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25/03/2008 18:03:00

If this rumour does have some truth in it, then Eboue will be off in the summer. There's no way we can have Walcott, Eboue, Vela, Ben Arfa, Hleb, Rosicky and even Diaby to some extent all competing for two places on the wings, having too many players in one position drove Diarra away, we don't want that to happen with Vela or Theo. But having said that, there won't be any truth in this
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25/03/2008 18:28:00

Er, what is he, I thought he's left-footed and playing in the LW position? We've got Carlos Vela, even RvP and Eduardo when he comes back who can do it there, in addition to Rosicky who's increasingly becoming a question mark bcos of his injuries though. Or can Ben Arfa play on the right as well? That's an entirely different proposition.
Lou the Gunneress
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25/03/2008 18:59:00

Arfa is quality. Question is - what kind of price tag would you see on him? I think it'd be an awful lot. Besides, the one you're loaning out in Spain at the moment is plenty good enough to be brought in next season.
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25/03/2008 20:22:00

Wenger wont buy him. He wont spend the money that Lyon will want for him. Period. WE have blown the title this year and unless Wenger strengths the squad, we wont win again. The squad is too thin now, Vela wont add that much to it a and I hope that Wenger knows this instead of just saying we have great team spirit. Really I am just an upset Gooner at the moment cos we had this in the bag and have just p*ssed it away.
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26/03/2008 00:02:00

At around £20m, anyone who thinks Arsene will buy Arfa must be dreaming. You can well expect to see someone like Charles N'Zogbia or Sidney Govou arriving though!
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26/03/2008 00:58:00

Prits, he did say he was interested in Hleb before the 05/06 season. He said negotiations were underway for a RB before our season (hope that counts) but he did say he wasn't interested in signing Diarra b4 signing him days later... Ben Afra would be good, but given his fame, pricetag and right winger not really his position (AMC is his most natural, I remember), I think another French winger would do us good, Jeremy Menez or Samir Narsi, both 20-year olds, both could play on the wings(the former is a natural) and a bit forgotten due to the Lyons duo's performances and fame. However, Narsi could still command a 10M+ transfer fee as he's the hearthrob of Marseille, a French International and they have the chance to play CL football. Jeremy Menez is more suitable, he is not a regular in the French National side (I don't think he's even been called up yet) and the side he's playing for is a middle-class club with hopes for Euro Vase at best. He should be our primary target for the following transfer period as he won't stay there for long and that Rosicky is not a real winger plus he's too easily injured. If you want unknown wingers in France who may have good potential, then Gabriel Obertan, Ayew, Dia and Saviet may be what you're looking for, but the last one's is best as a striker.
Report Abuse
26/03/2008 02:37:00

Well.. if you're reading today's papers.. Kuzmanovic is the name.
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26/03/2008 14:46:00

yeah kuzmaovic is the new player to be rumoured to us however he was the guy that scored against everton in the uefa cup and it was a good goal too.
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26/03/2008 16:07:00

Nasri? He said he wants to stay at Marseilles and to buy him, you'd have to cough up considerably more than you would for Arfa, I feel.
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26/03/2008 20:01:00

Arfa is a great young prospect. He would be a very good signing, but I think that he would cost a lot of money.
Report Abuse
27/03/2008 16:00:00


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