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Arsenal 0 Manchester City 1

On the surface, plenty were ready to dismiss this game prior to kickoff, with the League Cup fourth on the priority list. I think a lot of that might also have been in expectation of defeat against a City side that looks set to make the Premier League a rather uninteresting and diluted "competition" for a few years. I accept the point that the League Cup is 4th on the list of priorities and, as such, a largely changed side is called for. However, I wasn`t quite as ready to write the result off. Nowadays the League Cup is one of two trophies we have a realistic chance of winning. Finishing in the top 4 is and ever more shall be the most urgent priority, but that doesn`t mean it has to be our only aim.

The fact that the game sold out very quickly suggests there were a few Gooners who lived in hope too. Pre match I had the good fortune to meet with my old mate Jim for a pint. Jim used to come to away games with me back when we were at college, but dropped off the regular matchday scene a few years back with the advent of wife and two children. The game kicked off to the predictable chorus of boos for Nasri. It certainly seemed to put him off his game. I`ve seen the accusation levelled against Nasri in the press that he is a bit of a hider and I think it`s a criticism he has got some way to disprove.

Frimpong certainly seemed to take exception to him from the start. I did initially worry, as I sometimes do with Frimpong, that he plays the crowd more than the game. After a few early nibbles, he settled into the game very well and expunged any concerns I had. The beginning of the match set the tone for a very even and absorbing encounter, even if it produced few opportunities of note. Adam Johnson swayed inside Ignasi Miquel and fired a long range shot which brushed the roof of the net on its way over, momentarily deceiving the City fans into believing it had ruffled the back of the net.

Meanwhile, Arsenal`s best chance of the whole game arrived in the 9th minute. Chamakh fended off Toure before feeding the ball wide to Coquelin. His measured low cross went all the way to the back post where Ju Young Park stabbed a scuffed shot towards goal. It seemed to have enough to drift past Pantilimon, but the Romanian keeper thrust out a limb at the last second to paw the ball away. In a game where you felt the first goal would be key in determining the winner; it felt like a golden chance wasted.

The enterprising Oxlade Chamberlain powered in from the right, used Chamakh as a sounding board as the Moroccan laid the ball back into his direction. The Ox hit a fulminating left footed strike from 30 yards which arrowed towards the top corner, only for Pantilimon to thrust a fist into the path of the goalbound effort. Shooting on his weak foot from thirty yards. You can`t say the boy lacks confidence. The game appeared to be very nip and tuck at this point; Coquelin and Frimpong easily holding their own against the likes of de Jong, Hargreaves and Nasri.

So much so that Mancini made a tactical change on 32 minutes. Replacing Kolarov with £38m striker Sergio Aguero. Instantly, you could see his movement made City more threatening. At that point, I thought Arsenal were in for a very tough game and probably a bit more than they could handle as City wrested control. I was relieved to hear the half time whistle with the scores still level. I felt we were in for a very demanding second half. But City didn`t really press home that superiority. Edin Dzeko fired a shot which hit the stanchion behind Fabianski`s goal. The Bosnian then flicked Zabaleta`s cross just wide in a contest that produced little more than half chances.

In the final 20 minutes, the game did open up with both teams throwing off the shackles and looking to avoid extra time. City poured forwards, only to find themselves caught on the counter. Djourou sprinted down the right and sent in a low cross which Benayoun just didn`t manage to connect with. But from the resulting corner, City were able to turn the tables and affect a more clinical counter. From the start, the defensive shape from the corner wasn`t right as Djourou wanted to go forwards but couldn`t issue the instruction for a colleague to stay back in time.

The corner was taken amidst a flurry of confusion in Arsenal`s defence. A poor delivery was cleared easily at the front post. Coquelin and Djourou (I think?) dived in but Dzeko had the savvy to beat them both to the ball and hurdle his way to the touchline, before playing a defence slicing pass to Johnson. Johnson held off Djourou and cleverly touched the ball into the path of Aguero, who made no fuss of steering the ball past Fabianski. It was the sort of quality and precision £65m worth of strikers gives you. It was enough to win the game.

To their credit, neither crowd nor team looked particularly downhearted. The Gunners dusted themselves off and gave it a good go. Their best chance undoubtedly arriving in injury time. The lively Gervinho once again injected some penetration into the team and he put a cross into City`s six yard area that seemed tailor made for the head of Chamakh, but he arrived fractionally too late to connect. And the chance was gone.

Overall, it was a defeat and one I can`t pretend to be unbothered with. That`s 33% of our trophy chances gone for the season and whilst I think the trophy "drought" is hyperbolised to the nth degree, I always think a club of our vintage should be disappointed when the chance to get one fades away. But it`s difficult to feel downhearted. The performance of the two young central midfielders was very enthusing.

Squillaci is a player who is maligned ridiculously in advance of his supposed incompetence, but he and Koscielny in particular kept £65m worth of strikers under wraps. It was only when both were forward for a corner that Aguero and Dzeko- quality players each- were able to make genuine inroads. Chamberlain produced another exciting performance going forwards. But I don`t think it`s a huge secret that we need reinforcement upfront. Chamakh worked hard and bought others into play, whilst Park made promising runs. Though neither got the quality of service they perhaps required, you don`t ever get the sense that either looked dangerous. Nevertheless, the team shouldn`t be and probably aren`t too downhearted. LD.

21.FABIANSKI, 20.DJOUROU, 18.SQUILLACI, 6.KOSCILENY, 49.MIQUEL (5.Vermaelen `80), 15.CHAMBERLAIN (23.Arshavin `87), 26.FRIMPONG, 39.COQUELIN, 30.BENAYOUN©, 29.CHAMAKH, 9.J-Y.PARK (27.Gervinho `67). Unused: 24.Mannone, 40.Eastmond, 53.Ozyakup, 56.Yennaris.

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The Journalist

Writer: Tim Stillman Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Wednesday November 30 2011

Time: 11:47AM

Your Comments

I'm not downhearted at all either, infact I'm positively upbeat. That City team (however it was cobbled together) is one of amazing depth, and our young boys, first teamers and veteran of the game did beautifully. I commented on Twitter last night that we'd slyly become a team of beasts, and I stand by that. We've lost a massive amount of creative talent recently, and some of it is impossible to replace like for like, so what Wenger has done has fill that gap with some maturity and beastliness ... and it's working quite well I think. Koscielny is now clearly our best central defender too. Great player.
Rocky7
Coquelin had a fantastic Songesc game: great reading, balance, power and delivery. Firm was more solid version of Flamini and I hope he reverses his decision to play for Ghana. Ox looks the nuts and exactly the creative winger we have been missing. Although I do think we may need to pick up a quality striker in Jan I also think Park deserves a chance with the likes of Ramsey, Song, Gerv, Arteta...and the new found crossing ability of Walcott before we dismiss him.
No 10
Though not blaming them individually for this result, you can see that Chamakh and Arshavin are bereft of confidence, particularly the former and I can't see how he can get it back without a run of top-level games. I can't see how a club of our stature can go the rest of the season with our back-up strikers of the current form/quality. I really like the look of Coquelin though, he has the hallmarks of becoming a fantastic central midfielder. It would have been good to go back to Wembley and atone for last year, but it wasn't to be.
Gooner_Vin
City got frimponged all over the park last night. Felt very proud of my team. Very proud. They were brilliant. Even Chamakh played comparatively better than he has in recent games (1st half mainly). Loved how Fabianski pleaded for AW to let him go forward and AW instructing him to-and then coming back in time to prevent a 2nd City goal. I have no adequate words to describe watching Coquelin & Frimpong in midfield. City buys talent with oil money. We make it.
jaelle
City buys talent with oil money.We make it. How many Arsenal players last night come from London.Big fat zero.Please check facts before coming out with usual cliches.
giolib921
I think you've misunderstood a very, very simple point. The assertion we develop players has precisely ***** all to do with geography and everything to do with us developing and training them into being good players, rather than buying them ready made with someone else's money. If I make a fish soup as opposed to microwaving it out of a packet, does it mean I haven't really made it because the fish came from the sea and not from London? Christ.
Little Dutch
oil money. Grow up.
RobsonGreensleeves
Man City's owner is the head of the International Petroleum Investment Company. So his personal wealth is heavily connected with oil. His personal wealth is in turn purchasing Manchester City's squad. It's not an incorrect comment at all.
Little Dutch
Oil money is exactly what it is. It's certainly not football money, is it, given City's record-breaking losses. Your club is a whore.
damiano_tommassi
LD, you dont need to explain yourself to ignoramuses. Great article.
Deltaforce
Giolib So to narrow that down and be precise we should probably only use players from Islington, the verbs buy and make have different meanings.
grouvillegooner
Thank you LD. it been quite a while since I last posted here. Someone just made my day by saying "Kos is our best CB". I have said, he is better than TV5, Per and Djo.
Arseniger
Someone please watch the arsenal vs barca again. Go KOS
Arseniger
Oh and a word about Squillacci-guy hardly plays anymore and he came up solid against a bazillion pound team. Was surprised to see Mancini sub on a young academy player too. Thought that vaunted academy had been rendered moot.
jaelle
Hats off to Squillaci. Been the scapegoat for many of our failures but put in a top performance last night.
Sajit
Giolib are you thick? Seriously? Even your point's wrong seeing as Frimpong's from Haringey.
shewore
No, that vaunted academy has had a major overhaul, with world class facilities on the way. You might take the short-sighted view that City will just go on buyiung players, but we've done that, and it has pretty much worked. The future is in our academy, but like most of our rivals you are blinkered by your jealousy and refuse to acknowledge the long-term nature of our owner's investment in the club. We took the great leap forward and spent what it took to get us to the top - in terms of revenue growth we have had the largest season-to season growth of any club in history, and it's not stopping any time soon. So whilst you will continue to vent your anger at the initial spending to get what was a mid-table side up to the top level (it's easy when you make £50m per year from the Champions League and charge £100 for a match day ticket, innit?), the real impacts of the investments haven't even dawned opn you yet.
fifthcolumnblue
Revenue growth..Obviously not enough to match your mercenary salaries.. with you posting a 200 mi loss
Sajit
Every club is a whore.Whether money comes in from oil,russian gas and steel companies,Mrs Walmart,asian airline owners or american shopping mall owners or even money coming in from people buying shirts in Asia,America or Africa. Also,last night two Arsenal players came through the youth ranks,compared to one City player.So if that means you have made your team and we haven't,fair enough.
giolib921
This is a tiresome argument and one I'm not keen on having again largely cos I can't be arsed. But, the reason we make money from the Champions League is because we built a good team with a good manager from our own resources and qualified year on year. A crazy concept in what is ostensibly a sport I know, but there you go. And £100 a ticket? Behave. Arsenal charge £94 for the sum total of seats which accounts for about 2% of the stadium for 5 matches a season. That's 5% of the matches, divided by 2% of the stadium. Bit disingenuous to casually say we charge £100 a ticket. Even if we did, we sell out every week, so it's only what people are willing to pay. Again, that comes down to creating a team that people want to pay money to watch.
Little Dutch
Again giolib, you're putting a far too simplistic definition on "development." Intentionally so, too. The difference with City's investment is that it's not based on their success or how good a business or team they are. Most investors invest on the strength of the business they put money into because they are looking to get a return. That return, again, comes from what the club creates as its own resource.
Little Dutch
To shewore,I didn't realise Kumasi,Ghana is in England.Who is thick now?
giolib921
He's from London, if i was born in Sydney and moved to London when a baby i'd class that as London grown. i.e. "from", wouldn't you?
shewore
LD, you're the one being simplistic now mate. Why did ADUG invest in City?
Bluedub
I suggest digging out an interview with Frimpong on YouTube. That isn't a Ghanian accent. He was born there, but moved to Tottenham before he could walk. Bluedub, you're telling me ADUG are going to get their hundreds of millions back with profit to boot? City are a 100m sprinter that's been given a jetpack. Fortunately for you guys, the rules allow it. Enjoy it. Say you don't care what anyone thinks. But I find these increasingly far fetched explanations I'm getting from City fans as to why their business model is really no different to anyone else and really not doping at all bizarre. Nobody's saying don't enjoy yourselves, just don't try and tell us all it's earned.
Little Dutch
LD, come on mate you've got more intelligence than that. The investment is effectively a massive marketing machine for Abu Dhabi, as such it's in ADUG's best interest to build a successful, sustainable club. The return on investment will be seen by increased tourism and trade in Abu Dhabi, surely you can see that?
Bluedub
The dude has spent half a billion pounds in a few years or whatever the amount is. You think the tourism trade is going to recoup that through a few Mancs going on holiday? Marketing machine my arse, you're a play thing and you know it. A giant sky blue dildo.
Rocky7
Ok Rocky, whatever helps you sleep at night mate.
Bluedub
The sad thign about all these arguments is that I really don't begrudge City fans some success, if any fans have earned it it's them. I'm just a bit off put but the complete lack of admission that whilst they fans have paid their dues, the club most certainly hasn't. Everythign you have won and will continue to win, is paid for. Plain and simple.
Rocky7
The knowledge that my club is in good hands and has earned every single thing they've acheived is what helps me sleep at night. Success that even your Shieks billions will struggle to buy, and a beautiful home that wasn't paid for by the council. That's what helps me sleep at night.
Rocky7
That it makes some sort of broader business sense for Abu Dhabi is clear enough but it doesn't really change any of the observations about Man City's business model does it. You could argue that ADUG could get a great deal of exposure by selling top of the range luxury cars at 50% below the cost of production. They would very quickly generate major revenues and become league leaders among the country's car distributors but it still wouldn't make it an efficient car distribution business. The only difference is that trade laws wouldn't allow them to distort the markets in this way. I don't blame City fans for enjoying what has been bought for them (and the area around the ground may gain some regeneration benefit as well) simply so that Sheik Mansour can promote himself and his wider commercial interests but let's not pretend it's good for football in either a business or sporting sense.
Amos.
Rocky, I don't mean to be disrespectful but your showing a lot of ignorance here. City have paid and are continuing to pay for their stadium.
Bluedub
Amos, I understand your gripe, I genuinely do. The problem is UEFA created this mess where the revenue gained from their elite competition saw those that have been it over a number of years gain a massive advantage over the rest. The only way for a club to bridge that gap is through massive investment.
Bluedub
I stand corrected on the stadium part. But that really doesn't detract from my point though does it, that your success is bought and paid for, not earned. Also, I believe our club has proved that the gap can be bridged through hard work. Whilst Man Utd were scooping up the titles and playing in the CL for years before we caught up. We'd been languishing in midtable (even finishing below Spurs) yet the club brought in the right people and did business the right way taking us to the top of English football. Unfortunately the time we'd rightfully earned at the top was cut short by Abramovich's billions.
Rocky7
That's a fair point Bluedub and one I can understand. To some extent the CL does consolidate the status quo but it is still possible, provided the domestic leagues are equitably financed (they aren't in Spain for example) to challenge simply by building and developing a better team. Unfortunately Chelsea and latterly yourselves (along with Real, Inter for a while, and to some extent Barca) have distorted that competition exacerbating the previously existing unfairness. I don't claim it will ever be completely equitable but it really does need to be much fairer and balanced than it has become here as a consequence of both Abramovich and Mansour principally.
Amos.
In the nineties when Wenger took over,he brought in a lot of good quality players because he realised that the team he inherited(defence excepted)wasn't good enough.The team assembled was expensive for that era.At the time,Highbury was one of the cheapest grounds to go to in the premiership(remember paying £18 to see City losing 5-0 whereas Stamford Bridge was £42 in the same season),so the revenue for those players wasn't generated organically. Utd were paying £100,000/week wages many,many years before City or even Chelsea for that matter. Real Madrid's losses for years have been covered by the government and royal family in Spain. Yes,City have spent a hell of a lot of money in a short space of time.As the chairman has said though,the main reason for fasttracking has been mainly down to Mr Platini and his protection of the European football cartel AKA FFP. No disrespect Amos,but when FFP kicks in,don't kid yourself,that clubs will be able to challenge the "right way".Look at a club like Everton.They haven't overspent over the years.But with a decaying stadium,little corporate hospitality and no investment,they are still losing millions every year.The only realistic way for Everton to challenge in the top four consistently,would be to get a City/Chelsea style benefactor. As for development of youth,everyone reckognises what Wenger has done,it just gets tiresome and boring to read and hear about oil money/money whores/financial doping/200 mill losses/etc all the time.Mancini has been at City for coming up to two years now,and he has bloodied over twelve kids in carling cup/premiership and european matches.
giolib921
Bluedub, as ever any view contrary to your blue tinted view is 'ignorant'. What makes me laugh is you dole out the same hackneyed material in your posts that City hand out in their PR brochures! An investment is a term used for a cash injection with a timebound return. What ADUG have done in City is not an investment as there is no return from the club back to them. It is massive spending which ADUG have written off as marketing expenses. City is an expense account for ADUG and not an investment account. There are several Arsenal fans who work in The city and know a thing or two about finance so dont attempt your half baked financial analysis here!
Deltaforce
Delta, what I said was ignorant was Rocky's comment about the stadium, he has accepted he was wrong on that count. You really let this site down with your obnoxious way in which you speak to people. I was simply pointing out that ADUG have something to gain from their "expense account" and that it is in their best interest to build a successful, sustainable business.
Bluedub
Bluedub if anything you let this site down by coming here with your sub standard comments. Again your comments about a successful sustainable business are laughable. Its not going to happen and surely even you are smart enough to see it.
Deltaforce
We'll just have to wait and see on that count won't we?
Bluedub
Actually we wont for some years because all City can do in the foreseeable future is to reduce its losses from 194 million a year to 30-40 million a year. Next year's City accounts will have to account for the purchase of Aguero and Nasri as they were not included this year. Next year's loss is projected by financial analysts at 90 million quid.
Deltaforce
Believe it or not Delta, even someone like me with my sub standard comments reads the financial reports and you're not going to believe this but I read the forecasts from the financial experts also, so I am aware of the figures. it's not just people like you with your big job in the city, working for the man every night and day that can comprehend these things.
Bluedub
Re my comments on City's academy-I've made this point before: for yrs I heard City fans boast about their academy & how it produced English players while trashing Arsenal for being full of foreigners and hurting the national team, not producing any English players yadayadayada. I don't see much of that anymore from City fans now that they support a team full of foreign mercenaries who don't give a damn about their new club nor know anything about it nor do they want to know-they're just there for wages they can't get anywhere else. fifthcolumnble's reply implies City's academy is still going strong-don't see how any of those kids can get anywhere except for a few appearances here and there in unimportant matches given that City just keeps buying up established stars who themselves are often sitting on the bench. And City buying up established names shows no signs of stopping any time soon. You can feel upset at critical comments made about City all you want but the fact is you've earned the criticism. City fans have made an almost instantaneous turnabout into becoming the worst sort of arrogant swaggering obnoxious tribe that they've hated from the red side of Manchester for years. I hate Man Utd and their fans but at least they've actually earned their arrogance. Their money comes AS A RESULT of the talents & vision of one man and the club's approach to its business and trust in him. Our success came AS A RESULT of one man's talent & vision and the club's business approach and trust in AW. Our success comes from genuine sporting merit. What the hell have City done to earn any of your fans' swagger except throw money around? Money that your club has done nothing whatsoever on the football pitch to earn?
jaelle
"And City buying up established names shows no signs of stopping any time soon" wrong.
Bluedub
Like i said before,when Wenger arrived,he spent a lot of money for that time.Without that outlay,that Arsenal could not cover with their income at the time,you would not have had that success.Talking about success,jaelle,how much success in the last six years?
giolib921
giolib921 - helluva lot more success than you in those same six years. And you really are thick aren't you? The notion that AW spent money to buy players under in 1996 under the financial limits Arsenal operated under at the time is in any way equivalent to what City have done just exposes your unbelievable delusion. You are ally are remarkably ignorant. Truly incredible that you actually see it as the same thing. If that were all that City had done I'd have no problem. In fact, I find it sad that the game no longer has room for a bright, talented, little known young manager to come along and earn success thru his own knowledge & vision. That is nowhere near what City have done. THERE IS ABSOLUTELY ZERO EQUIVALENCE.
jaelle
It's true that Arsenal spent, by their standards, relatively heavily when Wenger first arrived but even in his first season, when the spending of the time was heaviest, bringing in Vieira, Petit, Overmars, Anelka et al we were still behind the net spending of Newcastle, Boro and Everton. In his second season nett spending was one of the lowest in the league at just £50,000. There hasn't been a time in Wengers tenure when we've ever topped the seasons nett transfer spend. As for whether Arsenal could cover the spending from their income or not history shows that they could as the money they used to buy players and fund the stadium build was generated entirely from their own resources and not from any gifts or 'soft' loans.
Amos.
To jaelle,you use insults like thick and ignorant,but tell me what have you won in the last six years?You say"helluva lot more success than you"Pray tell. To Amos,what you did at the time was fantastic.Wenger bought who he had to buy to challenge for top honours and he was brilliant at what he did.I did not have a problem with what he did,even though at the time City did not have a pot to ***** in.Nor did i have a problem with Newcastle/Chelsea/Blackburn or even the scum when they spent a lot when we couldn't.City have had to fasttrack the bulk of the big signings due to the upcoming FFP.You will probably find that the spending will come down heavily in the next two or three years.The infrastructure is being put in place at the club to enable this to happen.Remember,the Emirates was built to increase the revenue stream coming into Arsenal.Arsenal did not have the money for it,it had to be borrowed.We are not arrogant at City,we know we are lucky for what has happened,but for rival fans to go on about it all the time is annoying and sometimes we bite back.No matter what money is spent or not,without a good manager you will not have success.
giolib921
man city just a toy for the Arab rich oil millionaires to play with. One look at the Bench and there sat bridge has he played one game of football this seas and how many has he played since he moved to Sky blue. Nasri will learn as others have learned the error of his ways, 10 minutes here 10 minutes the have a minute; and he loves football? I stated over a year ago that teams like Man city operating under or should I say as a play thing of oil millions will ruin the game as I know called football. Thank god for managers like Arsne who without doubt is one of the best if not the best manager of any football team in the world. Just as a side ine watch him converse in three different languages fluently without stumbling in any. pause. We at Arsenal are so lucky. As a final thought if we had been able to keep Ces and nasri(before his greedy eyes were turned and with the next current crop almost ready to take over, what position we would have been in this season?
alwaysgunner
Borrowing money on commercial terms for infrastructure developments and repaying it from income can't really be equated to running an operation in which the wage bill alone is higher than annual revenues. The new stadium cost a reported £400m of which £260m was ultimately borrowed. The difference of £140m was funded from our own revenues and we had already spent more on the new training centre than our net spend on transfers which was also paid out of profitable income. As I've said I'm not blaming City fans for enjoying Mansour's largesse any more than I'd expect Chelsea fans to feel guilty at Abramovich funding their league titles. I'm pretty sure that many Portsmouth fans will also consider their current financial plight a sacrifice worth making for a few seasons in the PL and an FAC trophy though most creditors will naturally have a different view. You're quite entitled to enjoy it for as long as it lasts but let's not pretend that it is healthy for the game to become a billionaire's poker contest.
Amos.
I'm pretty sure I heard these same arguments from Chelsea fans a few years back, that this was a one-time injection to build the squad and the future would consist of young players being bought/developed, led by Arnesen's efforts. How has that worked for Chelsea? It sounds like a good plan for Man City (just like it did for Chelsea back then), but the basis for these arguments might not stand up in later years. Some other millionaire could buy up another club, injecting similar amounts of money in 5 years, meaning City will not be able to rely on their youth players.
prits
Giolib you are just wrong about Arsenal spending big when Arsene arrived in 1996. It has been mentioned that Newcastle, Chelsea and Blackburn out spent us but please look at the figures. This is Arsenal Vs. Spurs expenditure (offset by sales) from his arrival to winning the double '96-'98. £9.45m - Arsenal $16.9m - Spurs Please except that that statement is just plain wrong.
No 10
Chelsea bought two '1st' teams over flowing with international stars and paying over blown prices for them. It took a couple of years for the squad to look more normal and I assume the same will happen to City. I also assume that when that happens the players sold will leave for less than City paid.
No 10
Just out of interest City fans, and I am genuinely not being facetious, how many products of your youth system get even the odd game in the PL? Richards is one of yours right or did he come from Leeds?
No 10
Just Richards, he's been at the club ten years now. Hart was bought as an 18 year old so not specifically academy but close. Mancini has given numerous youngsters their chance in his tenure so far and judging by his history of blooding young players in Italy the young lads can take encouragement that they will get their chances. Boyata is currently on loan to gain proper PL experience, I'm sure he'll be in and around the first team set up again next season. Unfortunately Chelsea tapped up Sturridge who I'm sure would have been part of first team rotation if he was still with us. Guidetti is currently on loan in the Dutch League and is having a good season so far, with him having only signed a new deal with City in the summer I'm sure he'll be back to fill a T***z shaped hole in our squad next summer. The likes of Weiss and Onouha don't seem to fit the bill for Mancini so I expect both to be sold asap
Bluedub
As for the young lads we have in the academy now I'd say it will be at least another 12 months before we really see any of them push the first team for their places. The problem is we were producing a good standard of player but not quite good enough to perform at the top level. With the investment that has been made in the academy in recent years we have been able to attract a higher calibre of youth player than we did in the past. We can now attract the calibre of player Arsenal could to their academy, so we should see the fruits of that over the next few years.
Bluedub
Even the young players at the Arsenal academy find it so difficult to break through into the 1st team - this is despite the greater amount of patience Wenger has with youngsters and the larger amount of opportunities that these kids get. How does City expect their kids to magically step up, when the pressure for instant success is so much more (due to the 800M+ 'investment')? It all reads great in print, but do excuse my scepticism on this grand plan to blood academy graduates to replace a large portion of this expensive squad.
prits
No one is expecting anyone to magically step up. The fact of the matter is City now have very little scope for spending because of the impending FFP rules. City went through a period of accelerated spending to close the gap in terms of quality before the first monitoring period for FFP, this time of spending will not and cannot continue, therefore the investment is being made in the academy to supplement the squad over the next few seasons. If you are really that interested go and have a look at the blueprint for City's academy, it's all available online. City representatives were welcomed in by Barcelona to visit La Masia and on the back of this and consultations with other renowned academies have drawn up their blueprint to try replicate this.
Bluedub
The point I'm trying to make is that blueprints might be largely different from what actually turns out. Of course, the intention is there to blood academy graduates in future, but in reality, it might not work so well. Quite simple, really. No one is questioning the work done right now by City in this aspect.
prits
Prits, no one is saying it will work, it can't be said for certain from any club that what they have in their academy will eventually be part of the first team. I will say I'm fairly confident we will see some of the crop we have now push through. The reason for my confidence is the investment being made in the academy, the plans for the future and the fact that Sheikh Mansour promised in his address to the City fans when he bought the club that he saw the academy as a vital part of the future of the club, he has yet to renege on any of his promises.
Bluedub
Your experts from the city can explain this to you if you're struggling to keep up:

http://swissramble.blogspot.com/2011/12/manchester-city-masterplan.html

fifthcolumnblue
P.S. The chap that writes this particular Blog is a self-professed manchester Un*ted fan so has no interest in making things sound better than they actually are.
fifthcolumnblue
All the Student Gwants on here getting very high falutin' with City should recall your peripatetic outfit was moved to North London by crook and devious freemason Henry Norris, who was subsequently thrown out of football. He did it, not for any altruistic reason, but because Fulham couldn't make him any money, and he saw WOOLWICH Arse as a better bet. At least the current owners of City aren't screwing the rule makers to their suiting as well as pouring in money.
lordjohnny
Very interesting fifthcolumnblue but I wonder if you've bothered to read it yourself? Swissramble is to be respected but all he says is that City (along with Chelsea) could and will have to play by the same financial standards as everyone else eventually but they aren't doing so at present. That's precisely what anyone other than some City fans would want to happen.
Amos.
Peripatetic as in the example of a club wanting to move into social housing in Stratford if they can get someone else to pay for it you mean lj? Crooked and devious as in the North London club that had a director disqualified in the PL era citing instances of bribery, lying, deception, manipulation of accounts and misappropriation of funds - as crooked and devious as that you mean? You fall into the holes you dig for yourself every time you come here don't you.
Amos.
All johnnys' moral high ground squealing trumping and parping may also have held a little more water if their ballsack faced crook of a manager wasn't about to be hauled over the coals for his illicit activities. Levy wouldn't think twice of offering his bony scrawny arse up to the rulemakers to get himself ahead, but noone wants to know as he's recognised for the oily underhanded weaselly little sneak that he is, just ask Jol.
nikolaijns
Pwnage of johnny...As usual
Sajit
Probably not important, but I'm not sure where you got the info Swiss Rambler is a United fan. He isn't. He's an Arsenal fan.
Little Dutch
FCB, Swiss Rambler is a gooner and is saying the same thing as we are - City have a 'plan' for everything but its compliance to the plan is the issue. When faced with a choice of buying instant success through high priced players versus academy blooding of players, City would choose the former because success on the field is the essence of the entire 'project' undertaken by ADUG.
Deltaforce
You might have been thinking of Andy Wood aka AndersRed. He runs a similar sort of blog and is a United fan.
Little Dutch
That could well be who I was thinking of LD, thanks.
fifthcolumnblue
Delta, success on the field is the essence of football, shame for you Arsenal don't see it that way though, they believe 4th is success. How do you know what ADUG would decide? You do know Khaldoon Al Mubarrak has called for a salary cap to be introduced in football don't you?
Bluedub
Oh, we've moved to Stratford have we? Must've missed that. And until our Chairman can fiddle matters so much that league positions are changed by underhand shenanigans (bribery etc) we'll still not hold a candle to your Mr. Arse, Sir Henry Halftrouser. Also nikolai, heard of sub judice have you? I'm sure 'arry's brief at Sue Grabbit & Runne would like you to repeat that to Mr. Justice Cocklecarrot.
lordjohnny
You've missed most things. Basic comprehension isn't a strength for you. Nobody said you'd moved to Stratford simply that you desperately wanted to but nobody wants you there. Even though your devious board resorted to spying on those trying to make sure you didn't get anywhere near the place. Unlike those of NLD at the turn of the last century who welcomed us with open arms in order to bring a little pride and prestige to the area. Who could blame them especially as history has proved them so right while recent history has shown what a devious lot you marsh dwellers still are. [Edited by Amos]
Amos.
Success is relative Bluedub directly related to the resources available. Arsenal don't think 4th is success simply that when the competition is as distorted as it has become over the last few years then success has to be qualified by the fact that it is skewed. In any case the pursuit of success is an ongoing challenge. Short term actions may well bring some success in the short term but enduring success depends on stronger foundations. It maybe that ADUG will achieve that over time. On the other hand Chelsea have been pursuing the same strategy for more than 8 years yet failed to meet their break even objectives, show no sign of doing so in the near future and are needing to continue their spending levels to stay where they are. If ADUG do it better then credit to them but the scepticism is understandable.
Amos.
I just don't understand why Arsenal never replaced players that needed replacing Amos. Vieira being the prime example, credit to Wenger for trying to replace him from within but when it clearly wasn't working do you not feel he should have spent the money that Arsenal can quite easily afford to remedy the problem? I can see the similarities between Chelsea and City's approach but there is an assumption that City will continue, or would have continued if not for FFP, to adopt this same approach. There is no evidence to suggest that this would be the case.
Bluedub
The issue of which players we should have let go earlier, held on to, replaced from within, recruited externally et c., et c., is one of regular discussion on these and other forums. What is clear is that it has been much harder, at a time when we had to commit resources to reducing the stadium costs, to recruit and retain players in a market where clubs like Chelsea and yourselves are paying fees and wages that make no commercial sense at all when considered as a standalone business. It makes even less sense when considered as a sporting competition. We have to spend our money more prudently. Make a mistake in do or die attempt to pick up a trophy in the short term, knowing that we can't compete on transfer fees or wages that can't be justified through income could just reduce our chances of winning one in the medium term as and when a more level playing field returns. There is no evidence that City would tread the same path as Chelsea but the game does need not to leave it to chance. Supporters can be a bit like benefit junkies. If things aren't going well they'll always insist that the only solution is to spend the way out of it using someone else's resources. So far Abramovich hasn't been able to resist that pressure and meet his original declared business plan. ADUG might but if you have it it's hard to resist tossing in a few hundred million more if the pressure is great enough.
Amos.
I guess there's no right or wrong but I do know if I was an Arsenal fan it would rankle with me that there isn't more investment made in players when I believe it's obvious that it's needed, but I can see your side of the argument. Thank you Amos for indulging me in the polite way you have.
Bluedub
Believe me it rankles with quite a few Arsenal fans too. Hindsight is a great thing. Sure there have been some mistakes. With all your money you've made some poor choices too but hopefully it'll be proved right over the longer term. Thank you Bluedub. You've argued your case well, with civility and made some good points.
Amos.
 

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