Writer: Brice Coffer
Date:Wednesday June 17 2009
As soon as the Arsenal players completed their lap of honour around the Emirates pitch, the monotonous summer transfer rumour machine began oiling its gears and flipping on all its switches, in preparation for the long football hibernation ahead. The Arsenal blogosphere has erupted during the past month with speculation printed in the newspapers. For those who have developed the ability to ignore all the chaos, fair play to you. For the rest of us, separating the dross from the somewhat believable is how we occupy our June.
All the talks earlier in the summer pointed towards reinforcements arriving. Both the manager and the captain spoke of new faces. Wenger had this to say:
"The team is moving forward. The question we have to analyse now is, are we strong enough now to win the championship? If not, what do we need to add to the squad? There is some great quality here. The squad is very young, but what needs to be added for next year is to challenge for the championship."
Cesc Fabregas wants a midfielder to hold down the fort while he and the rest of the midfield goes forward.
'We have lost big players, but the boss knows what he is doing,' said Fabregas. The days of signing a new player aren't finished. We need someone in the middle to make competition and make a difference, plus give us a new dimension. The rest is perfect."
"We are used to playing with footballers like Vieira, Gilberto Silva or Flamini and for sure this year we've been a bit lame in such an important position. It's an undervalued role, but key, above all for teams like ours, that attack, that have a lot of the ball. To know there is someone behind you is fundamental."
According to She Wore A Yellow Ribbon, an Arsenal fan site that keeps track of every player linked to the club each summer, 48 players have been rumoured to be coming to Arsenal. Of these forty eight, one is all but completed, centre back Thomas Vermaelen, while only another two seem to have any substance to them, Mamadou Sakho and Felipe Melo.
While we never know if the Professor will decide to bring in players, we do know eight words that will come out of his mouth before the start of next season, Eduardo and Rosicky will be like new signings. Some fans, who want him to spend galactic amounts of money, will mock this, but he couldn't be more right. Neither has played in the Premiership since early 2008, but both returned to full training during the latter portions of last season and they will be ready to go come August, barring any new setbacks. Both are world class players that will boost the attacking talent at the club tenfold.
Picture this: its five past 3 o`clock on a Saturday afternoon in a sunny North London. The lush Emirates pitch is in immaculate condition like always and Arsenal is beginning an attack on their opponent`s goal. Sagna passes the ball inside to Cesc, who continues the switch of play by swinging it over to Arshavin on the left flank. There goes the blur of Gael Clichy bombing down the touchline, overlapping the artistic Russian. Andrey slots the ball between two defenders into the path of Clichy, who looks up and spots Eduardo in the box waiting to pounce. Instead, Gael plays a low ball into the feet of van Persie, who swivels around a helpless defender and chips the ball back post onto the onrushing Rosicky, who has ghosted past his marker to steal the ball right off of the toes of his opponent. The back of the net ripples violently and the home crowd erupts in jubilation.
This thought of an attacking lineup consisting of Sagna, Clichy, Fabregas, Arshavin, Rosicky, van Persie, and Eduardo gives me shivers. Add in the depth of Nasri, Walcott, Vela, Denilson and Bendtner, and you have on offense who matches any other in Europe. Arsenal aren`t far off from having another great Wenger team, and I don`t think I`m the only one who senses that Arsene will put together those final puzzle pieces in the coming weeks.
Date:Wednesday June 17 2009
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