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Senderos Off To AC Milan

It seems as thought Big Phil Senderos is on his way to join Matty Flamini in Italy after AC Milan claimed to have secured his services on a loan deal with a view to make it permanent at the end of the season.

I was reluctant to go with this story initially as I just assumed the press were speculating after the signing of Silvestre, but the more time passes without comment, the more certain it becomes.

Senderos hasn't always filled Arsenal fans with confidence, indeed, the player himself was a confidence player, sometimes visibly crumbling after making a mistake or two, however I still feel this could be a mistake.

With Senderos gone it leaves us with 4 central defenders. The pairing of Toure & Gallas seemingly not clicking exactly the way we thought they would, the inexperienced Djourou, and a player so injury prone he pulls a muscle in his first ever training session with the club.

Hleb aside, the players leaving the club this summer have not been replaced, and with Arsenal's horrendous injury record over the past 3 years (surely there's something wrong here) I've got a real sense of foreboding about this season.

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The Journalist

Writer: Rocky7 Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Tuesday August 26 2008

Time: 1:15PM

Your Comments

I think it was his differing performances from champions league to prem that made people so frustrated with him. Another useful squad player has been sold and replaced with a crock just like Gilberto was with Bishcoff? Why on earth the core of a squad that were 4 points from the title is being dismantled only Arsene knows? its his call but its a very risky one.
Risky indeed iceman. All it would need would be for a defensive injury and maybe Cesc out for a month or two and we will be well up ***** creek.
Its a squad game and obviously the chavs are number 1 when its comes to 2nd string, united have the likes of fletcher, giggs, oshea who can cover and we have.......well some potentially good players and crocks. Infact the best squad player we have is Eboue and he gets slated every week for trying (even tho he is a moaner, I like his adaptability).
You've left out Song as a CB option, who did quite well last year. As for Big Phil, he's been riding on that form from our CL run 3 years ago for such a while now, while continuously failing to live up to the expectations. He was given by far the most opportunities to prove himself compared to Djourou, Song etc. and has failed to establish himself. I like Senderos as a lad, he is intelligent and modest, but now he's falling in the pecking order and the best thing for him is to play at the highest level and what better place to do so than at Milan with experienced defenders around him giving him advice and teaching him some stuff, too. Hope it's a loan though, so we can have him back next year in time to reclaim his spot in the heart of our defence. But now I feel it's time for Djourou and Song to get their chance and prove what they can do.
This gets more baffling by the day. We sign Silvestre and are told it is for versatility and depth. Yet we follow his signing by getting rid of two more defenders! Senderos' performances in the CL were pretty good, ten straight clean sheets in 05-06 and he played all of those games. That run unded when he was removed, he's the only aerially dominant CB we had. The fact that Song came in at the end of the season suggests the writing was on the wall and we don't know what his psychological reaction was to the Liverpool game. But this looks a very bad move to me, we're depleting our thin squad by the week and my hopes for this season have pretty much evaporated. I don't recall such an air of negaitivity around the club in Wenger's tenure and I don't recall feeling this negative about our hopes for a long time.
Little Dutch
I think the negativity is due to the signings/sales looking rather scatter gun? There seems to be no strategy behind the comings and goings. when your 4 points off of winning the title ahead of the european champions your squad only needs tweaking not dismantling.
But G4L, although Song can play CB, his essentially a midfielder. We can't can shifting everyone around like this. It seems as though Wenger wants a squad of 18 who can just play anywhere on the pitch so squad numbers can be kept to a minimum. I'm will LD here, I'm ever the optomist, too much sometimes, and I would never write us off just two games into the season, but it really does feel to me like an era is coming to an end, and it's killing me.
I'm in complete agreement with LD and I'm genuinely worried now about this season. We can't afford to lose Senderos, esp. since he's been replaced by a player who's already freaking injured! (he's also a player who used to make comedy errors in the LB position at MU). If we don't sign anyone in midfield, I think finishing 4th place is in serious danger. Even if we do sign someone like Alonso, 4th place will still be a challenge. PLUS, if Djourou does go out on loan, then that's it. We'll have a horrible season. I wish I understood what the hell is going on. I don't understand AW's decisions any more.
I don't think Silvestre is injured. He wasn't selected on saturday to give him more time to recover from muscle injury he had when he joined us. The club has confirmed a one year loan deal is in the process of being finalised but that a permanent move has yet to be decided. With 5 CB's the anxiety is only based on the impression of a diminishing squad not because this move really causes us any special problems in that position.
I think it causes a very big problem in that position because I think, in the absence of signing anyone else, that Senderos should be starting alongside Gallas. Senderos is not necessarily a better defender than Toure, but he suits our team better and that's what's important. We now have a lot of identikit centre backs and a centre half partnership that has little hope of working.
Little Dutch
As it happens I agree with you (that Senderos should start alongside Gallas that is) but the clamour to support Senderos now seems at odds with what I have heard for most of the last couple of years or so. With Silvestre in and assuming Djourou stays I really don't think we will struggle any more this season than we would have done if he'd stayed. The problem for me is a longer term one in which we may just be getting rid of a defender that with a couple of years more experience would be a very good player indeed. Hopefully Wenger has secured an option to bring him back. It is at odds with Wengers intention at the end of last season to keep as much of the existing squad together as he could. Just shows how quickly things change in football.
If that's true about Silvestre, then I'd like to know just how he passed a medical?! Another thing that irks me is what if we have injuries to a CB and Clichy at the same time? Silvestre is now our only cover at LB and he's cover for CB at the same time. Our squad is as weak as a Spurs fans argument as to why they are the better team.
I'm absolutely convinced that this season we won't miss Senderos. As for his aerial dominance, I haven't been impressed. He has been dominated by some really average forwards in his last years, and his self-confidence is paper thin. As soon as he'd make a mistake (which is normal, everyone makes them), he'd instantly forget how to do what he was doing right in the first place. Mistakes mess with his head, he dwells on them too much and that reflected on his performances. Rocky, I really don't care if Song is genuinely a midfielder or a striker as long as he is able to fulfill his task as a CB when called upon. He complemented Gallas aptly last year. Fergusmoan does it with O'Shea, Brown, Fletcher, etc. I'm sure Song is if not better at least as good as them.
If it's only a slight muscle pull that isn't going to keep him out for more than a few days why wouldn't he pass a medical? Arguably the situation is better now if a CB and Clichy were injured at the same time than we had before. Silvestre can cover both positions and Senderos only the one. Before we had Gallas (excluding Traore or Gibbs) covering LB.
Gibbs can play LB as well, so can Eboue and/or Sagna. Djourou and Toure have played as RBs, too.
It wouldn't surprise me if Wenger signed not one but two players we least expect, or at least one who can again play in both positions. There are still some options on the market I think.
I really don't think Gibbs can play LB in anything other than a CC game. Not at this level - not yet anyway. But in any case our options there now are better than they were. We are just attaching an anxiety about our midfield deficit, while Cesc, Diaby and Rosicky are out injured, to a position we wouldn't otherwise be all that fussed about (though I do actually rate Senderos as a defender).
Amos - because if Arsenal were aware of the muscle pull surely he couldn't have been put through the paces properly through risk of agrevating it further. If that was the case then something else could have been missed. And we've lost two defenders and only gotten one in ..... that, imo, is weakening a squad, especially after witnessing Senderos' prowess on the wing in preseason .... lol
Rocky, maybe his medical was conducted by the same sausage maker who checked Rosicky.
LOL - Could well be buddy!!
It's ok I tell you! He had a letter from Fergie with him assuring us everything was fine!
I think Milan will improve Senderos greatly and that he won't want to return to us. Hope I'm wrong but I can see him doing well at Milan.
Anyone seriously upset about Senderos leaving needs to get their head examined. Senderos was a liability, error-prone, and mentally weak. Djourou has looked class, and so has Song in his opportunities, it's obvious Big Phil is not an Arsenal-class player. Thanks for the service Phil, but time to move along. I also don't understand the doom-mongering. LD, especially from you! I think we are one strong link-player in midfield away from being as strong as last year. You can't possibly read too much into the loss to Fulham, when have we EVER played well in the match after an International Break? I was as disappointed as anyone, but I think you are all over-reacting and letting the "echo chamber" effect of the internet get into your heads. Watch us play a couple killer games in the next two weeks. 4-nil over FC Twente and 3-1 over Newcastle, you heard it here first!
Did it come by horse Amos? Lol
i am not sad that he is leaving us.
I am not particularly sad to see him leave...but i wldnt be surprised to see him become a good defender at Milan. I sure hope Wenger has a defender and a defensive midfielder lined up - and not just youngsters anymore - if not, we might as well kiss this season goodbye. The doom and gloom seems to be spreading...especially from gunners like LD....i just wonder what Wenger is up to...i will leave certain sentiments unspoken and wait till the end of the transfer window - i just hope he is not relying on only Song, Djourou and Denilson.
Its a pity..i hope AW stubborness and frugality doesnt cost us..whts the use declaring profits in transfers every season at the expense of silverware
I am kind of toying with the idea that AW will not sign any other player - ouch
The sad thing is that two seasons ago I felt this team was on the verge of something extrodinarily special but that has now been replaced by a feeling that we are on the verge of being ordinary. Nobody foresaw what Flamini gave to the team last year but without any question this team is crying out for a strong, defensive midfielder in the form of a Diarra (of Real Madrid) or Yaya Toure. Without that type of player, we'll probably scrape 4th.
Ok..Aw has obviously decide we are ok defense-wise -,22162,14287_4052237,00.html - i hope he is not thinking along the same lines for DM.
We have 5 CBs now. Gallas, Toure, Djourou, Silvestre, and Song. Senderos was a liability and now he is surplus. AW must of decided he sees more promise and potential in Alex Song at CB than big Phil.
I agree with Jaelle - I can see Senderos doing well for Milan. 1. It's slower there, suits his (lack of) pace. 2. You don't get much better than to learn from Maldini, Nesta, etc. And er, am I the only one wondering if Milan do their transfer business with us based on our players' performances in those 2 CL games last season?
Lou the Gunneress
I actually don't think Senderos was any more error prone than Toure or Gallas, nor is he any more error prone than Terry or Adams were at 22. I rate him highly as a defender and always have done, the beauty of writing for a website is that you can always verify your opinions as a matter of record and I've said so on record many times. As I said in another article, I'm not an optimist, I'm not a cynic and I'm not a pessimist, it's about working with what you're given. I'm looking at this squad at the moment and I'm not given much hope. We ran out of steam last season due to having too small and inexperienced a squad, so we've apparently remedied that by making it smaller and less experienced. I hope Wenger has some genius vision that mere mortals like me can't see, but I'm at a bit of a loss here.
Little Dutch
What I want to know is why are the fans always the last to know about players coming and going? What on earth is the point of, aside from somewhere to go to pay for interviews you can read about in The Sun the day before? In keeping with our esteemed chairman's pronounciations today its obvious the club couldn't give two hoots about our opinion, as long as we continue to put money in the coffers. Why don't thay just come out and say we're paying for the stadium and can't afford super wages? The fans will understand. But for god's sake don't treat us like fools.
Wyn Mills
Just wanted to add to LD's point: the Gallas-Senderos pairing actually kept a higher proportion of clean sheets (4 CS in 9 games) and conceded slightly less on average (0.78/game) than the Gallas-Kolo pairing (0.89/game, only 5 CS in 18 games) in the league last season. Granted, the oppositions and circumstances were different.
Lou the Gunneress
Wenger says we are letting Senderos go because he needs more playing time at top level. That would be a fair enough argument, if he hadn't just gone out and bought an injury prone 31 year old! What a load of bollox this is. Who do the club think they are trying to kid? Not the first time we've heard this as an excuse to ship out players. But I guess its nice to know players welfare comes above the success of Arsenal football Club.
Wyn Mills
What's wrong with hearing rumours before the official confirmation Wyn Mills? And what's wrong with the club not saying anything until the deal's 100% done? I know it's a frustrating situation we're in, but keep our perspective.
Lou the Gunneress
well done this is a setup for him
*ment step up*
So Lou, you're happy with the way the club communicate with you, are you? To be honest I found PHW's remarks in the press today nothing short of insulting to me as an Arsenal fan. To state to the media that you don't listen to the fans is something no chairman should EVER state. Other chairman try to talk to their fans. Ours seems to talk over us. It explains why our club is shrouded in a cloak of misinformation and uncertainty. We are no old gentleman's club. We are a massively popular football club, and as paying punters we should be able to rely on getting the news directly from the club, not second hand from a grinning spurs hack. As for perspective, we've had arguably the easiest opening 2 games of all the so-called big-4 and are languishing in the bottom half of the table. Is that perspective enough? Its early days, I know, but come December let's all have a discussion about perspectives again.
Wyn Mills
I share your concerns about this squad, LD. I was expressing the exact same apprehensions in another thread. If you look at the squad numbers-wise from last season, we have lost Diarra, Gilberto, Flamini, Hleb, Lehmann, Senderos, Traore, Hoyte, Eduardo (till Dec) - thats 9 players. We've added Nasri, Ramsey, Vela, Mannone, Silvestre, Wilshere - thats only 6 players. So in terms of pure numbers, we're 3 players lighter than the previous season when the obvious need was to add 2-3 players to the previous season. I'm ok with the quality of the players in our squad, but we seriously need more numbers, and not just the 1 mid field player to replace Flamini, but atleast 4 more players to challenge on 2 fronts. Or we'd have to be extremely extremely lucky with injuries and not lose players during the season, which is not likely to happen, given our record so far this season - Diaby, Cesc, Sivestre, Rosicky. Normally I'm an optimistic fan but reality strikes hard.
To talk about any league position after any 2 games, easy or difficult, is not my idea of perspective Wyn Mills. You have every right to be angry, but that's NOT perspective. Chill.
Lou the Gunneress
Good news, newcastle-coventry tie has gone into extra-time, hopefully the geordies will be tired on saturday :) It's difficult to say for sure if Senderos would have gone on to be a great defender if he stayed with the club. I agree with those who feel he has been given enough opportunities (same as Hoyte) and it's time for him to move on. I prefer Djourou because he has more pace and also he can play the DM position. Let's face it, if AW played Senderos again in a crucial match and he made a mistake, everyone would be saying he should have never been given another chance. I am worried about our team, because there are going to be so many unproven players playing regularly in the first team. I am however prepared to wait longer than 2 games to see if any of these players are good enough. Song and Djourou in particular I think will come good (one as CB and one as DM, not sure which way round).
As I said lets leave the perspective discussion until December. You're right - 2 games isn't enough (even though those games were supposed to be 'easy'). My real beef is with club management that seems to think its fans are a bunch of mindless sheep. Like all the other sheep I'm regularly sent application forms for Arsenal credit cards and merchandise catalogues, but the club don't see fit to publish up to date information. Yes, they host a 'fanzone forum' on the website, but look closely and you'll notice its minutes dating back to April 2008! (no doubt reviewed and censored by some quorum).There's no live banter whatsoever. I don't call that an interactive fanzone...I call it an archive! Where's the messageboards? How do the fan's talk to the club? Answer is they don' least not directly... and not immediately. The board isn't really interested in what we think. I think they're in for a rude shock though.
Wyn Mills
Well, well I couldn't believe when I heard that Senderos was off to AC Milan, there I was on holiday in Beautiful Somerset, with no Freeview or internet! At 1st I thought that it must be a dream, maybe I was suffering from the too much fresh air! I mean Senderos and AC Milan How has this happen, it certainly took me by surprise! I had hoped that Senderos would stay at The Arsenal, and right the wrongs of those games where he made mistakes, I felt that Senderos in time would come right. Oh, Well, Good Luck to him!

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