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AW: 'Barca Don't Want To Sell Villa'

Arsene Wenger appears to have ruled out the suggestion that Arsenal will sign Barcelona striker David Villa in the January transfer window. Whispers have circulated during the month that the 31 year old Spain frontman had emerged as a target for the Gunners.

Last night, stories emerged that Arsenal had made contact with the Catalans over the prospect of buying Villa. Barca are thought to still owe Arsenal money for the sales of Fabregas and Alex Song, which the Gunners were willing to waver to finance the deal.

However, Wenger today dampened expectation that Villa would be arriving in N5 in this window, 'Barcelona don't want to sell, they've made that clear.'

That seems to suggest Arsenal did indeed make an enquiry, which Wenger then strangely appeared to refute, 'I said they don't want to sell, I didn't say he was a target.'

One has to ask how the club know of Barca's intransigence in the matter if they haven't made a concrete enquiry. But then, given the scattergun nature of the manager's comments during this month, I wouldn't be altogther surprised if he started parroting David Icke's 'Superlizard' theory tomorrow.

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The Journalist

Writer: Tim Stillman Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Tuesday January 29 2013

Time: 1:56PM

Your Comments

Didn't Rosell go public that Villa was not up for transfer a few weeks back? Conceivably that was what Wenger was referring too. It seemed a strange target for Wenger anyway other than possibly as a loan until the end of the season. I think the scattergun nature of Wenger's answers is an inevitable consequence of reporters scattergun tendency to launch any name that comes into their heads and ask if we're going to sign him.
Hmm.. did we want to sell Cesc?
Dont Arsenal have enough strikers already.? i would have thought it was the midfield/defence that needs some strenghtening
Dunno, this link chronicles all of his comments on transfers this January Pretty schizophrenic.
Little Dutch
Wenger has said we will be stronger if we do nothing.
Wyn Mills
Somebody on Twitter posted a link to an Arsene quote last summer 2 days before the transfer window closed that said "We are definately not in for Mikel Arteta" .... I've given up listening to Arsene in the transfer window, it's completely pointless.
Did he really say that? That's nuts, the only way we could be weaker if we signed someone would be if we resigned Mikel Silvestre.
If one striker is too many, then yes, we have too many strikers.
I also feel I'm stronger if I do nothing. My missus however calls me a lazy unambitious negligent workshy dosser. Watching Arsenals' inaction this window makes me come round to seeing her POV a little more. Would we actually do any business even if we wanted to? Are we that incompetent we have sent Dick Law all the way to Barcelona when a quick phone call would've established he'd be wasting Arsenals time and obviously precious money? Why is Wenger making personal calls to clubs? I understand to players but to clubs? Are we really that unconfident of those that make up the squad off the pitch as well as those on? The whole thing just reeks of Wenger taking on board way too much as ever and failing dismally to appoint or have someone appoint a competent team that have experience in getting deals through with the minimum of fuss. It all just seems a horrible horrible mess that as always is so avoidable, but having winged it for so many seasons this could well be the one where luck runs out and it costs the club dearly. I just don't think Arsene can see the wood for the trees any longer.
Queue the anti-Dein retorts, but there was a time when Wenger had help landing his fish.
Wyn Mills
Wyn Mills
Even taken out of context I don't see that that list of Wenger sound bite comments is even inconsistent let alone schizophrenic. Pretty much the same theme all the way through unless I'm missing something.
Arsenal + Wenger + Kroenke + Transfers + Dick Law = Rolling tumbleweed.
Professor Calculus
If you read/listen to what he says, there is no confusion. If you bring your own assumptions to it, then you create confusion in your own mind. Ditto if you take as gospel what he is reported to have said as opposed to listening to the original interview on Case in point "We are stronger if we do nothing." He did use those words in more or less that order, but with lots of other words as well, which gave that phrase a different meaning to what is being implied by Wyn Mills. If you're confused or frustrated you have only yourselves to blame. He is consistent. He rates our players and won't bring anyone in unless *he* thinks they are *better* than what we have in the squad already. He always says he will try to bring in better players if he can - this is not a promise or a guarantee that he will succeed in doing so. Just because you don't know what is going on does not mean nothing is going on.
And forgot to mention that after saying there was no room for negotiation with Barca on DV, he was asked whether that was it and replied, when a club says a player is not for sale, you respect that. If they want to be classless, they can. We're not.
When a club says a player is not for sale in the January window it can be said with more certainty than in the summer window. A player outside the protected period of contract can force a sale only at the end of a season by unilaterally terminating it. He can't do so mid season even if his contract is unprotected. Hence the clubs resolve can't be undone by the player or his agents.
Yeah AW has been pretty consistent with his comments. I think some fans are desperate for him to say he will definitely sign someone and are misinterpreting his comments. I suspect we have made offers for players and most clubs will leave it until the last minute to do a deal if no better offer comes in. That's why he made the comment about most deals being done in the last 48 hours a few weeks back.
I'd say veering between "we don't need anybody" to "yes, we are short, we need players" within 48 hours suggests a changing of the goalposts in what he is saying. It's pretty impossible to miss.
Little Dutch
I can't find those quotes in 'schizophrenic' list of comments LD. Are they direct quotes as I can't see to find them ? If so are you completely happy you've got the full context of both phrases?
Reading something from yesterday's Independent, we couldn't get Villa and nobody else is good enough. We don't need a striker (even though just a couple days ago he said we did and that 'we aren't short in quality but maybe in quantity' - good point I thought) as of now because Giroud is coming around, Theo is a striker now, he forgot that he'd bought Podolski primarily as a striker, and Gervinho is the best striker at the African cup. By that logic shouldn't he buy a wide player? He has two players at every position, but some of them are counted twice - Ramsey is a wide player when it suits Wenger even though he has proven ineffective (to be kind) there. He also says he doesn't want to buy an average player just to buy because he'd be stuck with them for four or five years - he should know, his list of such players in recent years is pretty long. Of course that means he probably has a couple of players lined up. Or not. We are probably stuck with what we have and hopefully it will be enough. Of course if we lose to Liverpool he'll come out with something else and we'll probably make a panic buy or two. I don't think he's necessarily schizophrenic or continually contradicting himself - after further analysis I have come to the conclusion that he talks a lot but doesn't actually say anything.
Well here are some more choice phrases, "We know we are short." Followed by "Our squad is quite complete." "We know what we need to do and we look everywhere" was followed by "we have two players in every position" which then proceeded "numbers wise (upfront) we are short." It's flip flopping in the extreme. It's fair enough if he's trying to throw people off the scent or whatever, but set against a background of constant inaction, it looks incompetent, I have to say.
Little Dutch
That's the problem with the mandatory and frequent press conferences that the PL imposes on managers, they're obliged to talk a lot without saying too much. Those reporters at yesterdays conference trying to make an 'Arsenal interested in Beckham story' were patiently informed of the reality yet you'll still find stories on the news wires implying there is some interest. In the news industry all words have the potential to be spun and their intended meaning can become an entirely different one to suit the need for headlines. Reporter 'What do you get out of Beckham training with you' Wenger 'Questions at press conferences'
Again are those direct quotes and do they suffer when out of context LD? Being short on numbers due to injury or international calls wouldn't be a permanent condition and the squad probably is complete on numbers. When quoted fully, as in that list of supposedly schizophrenic comments, which are fairly consistent in theme, there isn't really any flip flopping at all. He clearly wants to add better players and in all probability always will want to, as indeed he should, whatever the existing make up of the squad.
I totally get what the press’s game is etc. Prior to us playing Manchester City there was a journalist that asked AW four (4!!!!) questions about Mario Balotelli. Listen, if I had to speak to those idiots every other day I’d patronise them too. But I watch all of Wenger’s press conferences online and I have to say that, no, I don’t believe there’s any suffering of context here. In one conference he’s adamant that he is looking for players and in the next he says he’s not that bothered. It is total flip flopping. That would be fair enough if there was evidence to believe that he was throwing the press off the scent, but set against the action (or rather, lack of- which is a pretty constant theme), then it’s difficult to believe that he isn’t, to use his own parlance, “jaded” by the transfer market. I can’t psychoanalyse the reasons but he looks petrified of the market. If he’s saying one thing to the press and doing another, that’s one thing. But he’s saying a myriad of different things in a variety of different ways and doing absolutely nothing. I’d have a lot more tolerance for the “super, super quality” and “we’re keeping our powder dry” lines if they weren’t spun in every single window, bar none whilst our squad always looks short. (We’ve basically played for 18 months now with one centre forward in our squad). If he consistently and genuinely can’t find these players year after year after year, what on earth are we paying him £7.5m a year for? I get where he’s coming from, it’s hard, we shouldn’t just sign any old clogger. But you know, that’s why we pay him what we do. If the CEO of Barclays just turned around and said, “Yes, but it’s really, really hard to sustain interest rates, serve our shareholders and run a huge corporate operation” I doubt he’d get a favourable response from his paymasters. “We know it is, that’s why we pay you *****loads of money to do it. So stop whingeing and do it.” You've kind of exemplified the point in your last sentence, "He wants to add better players." Well that's great, but so often he fails to actually do it.
Little Dutch
As an example of misrepresenting words Wyn paraphrases something Wenger has said to claim he said 'we will be stronger if we do nothing'. What he actually said was “What is important is that you bring in players who can strengthen your team, or you do nothing and are strong enough to do nothing." Not quite the same thing is it even without the rest of the context that fleshes out the meaning.
That he fails to add better players than he has presumes that better players are always available at any given time and that he has first pick of them. Does he fail to find better players year after year after year? Has there ever been a year when he hasn't signed a player? You can argue whether they're truly better than some that had gone before but pretty well every year he has signed someone better than we were otherwise left with. I really don't see this flip flopping that you claim exists. If anything he has been tediously consistent. I can't pretend that I religiously follow every single press conference but I tend to dip into those when he has supposedly said something controversial and contradictory and more often than not find that it's quite different from the partial sentences and paraphrasing that's offered and usually perfectly sane, consistent and rational even if I don't entirely agree. I certainly don't think he's petrified of the market just not petrified of disenchanted supporters wanting him to sign someone. Some supporters think he should be but he wouldn't be worth his salary if he was.
Well the Barclays CEO is on about the same as Gazidis, so he needs to get into football administration ASAP for an easier ride.
Odds on Wenger signing anyone if we beat Liverpool 6/1, odds on Wenger signing anyone if we lose to Liverpool evens.
The frustrating thing about Wenger is that the result of tonight's game won't make the slightest difference. It might do if someone suffered a serious long term injury though which is how we ended up with Arshavin I guess.
Agree to an extent, but if we get stuffed, then it will - you can't deny that mauling at OT forced him to sign Arteta, Mertesacker and the appalling Santos
Not that i fancy us to get stuffed, I think we should win tonight relatively comfortably, especially if the attack clicks again. Just that they have Suarez who's the real threat
Mertesacker was being courted a year before we signed him, Clichy went at the beginning of July so were were always going to sign another left back just as we were always in the hunt for a midfielder. Arteta was the best that was available at the end of the transfer window once any preferred targets proved unobtainable. So taking all those things into account I reckon those transfers would still have taken place irrespective of the whipping at OT and therefore would deny they were the panic buys you seem to think even if the sense of urgency grew as the window went on.
We wanted Mertesacker the year before but instead decided to wait a year to get him on a free, same with Chamackh, we baulked at Cahill (who is a very good player for Chelsea, probably their next captain). I read the article in the Toriegraph the other day talking about Dein doing the deals, even if Wenger baulked at the price Dein would've made the signing if it was 1 or 2 mill more - as the football guy why does he have to be in charge of the purse strings so much? Surely it's better if that's taken out of his hands - i'm not saying anyone else identify the targets, Wenger should do that, just let other people take care of the administration side of it - jesus, they're paid well enough to do it.
You're more than a little confused there. Mertesacker wasn't free and he says Arsenal tried to buy him the summer before but his club wouldn't let him go. Bolton wanted £18m reportedly for Cahill but hung onto him until the following January and sold him for less than half that to Chelsea. Read Pires autobiography and you'll see that Dein had nothing to do with his transfer it was handled by Wenger alone. Dein only got involved with the board and made a right royal mess of keeping Ashley Cole.
Sorry yeah, 8m. So the only impact Dein had was on Ashley Cole's balls up? Ah right ;) Nothing positive on any other transfers then? Dein was intstrumental in most of our top signings.
Amos, you're right. I have paraphrased Wenger, but for a reason. What he’s in effect saying is he believes we are strong enough to do nothing. Strong enough for what? 4th place? Debatable at the moment I’d say. I mean it’s fair enough having that belief but I currently don’t share it. The real issue, and one Wenger seems to constantly skirt around (with his red herrings about Messi, only signing top top super quality players and killing young players) is about the team remaining strong over the course of a long hard campaign, because we are potentially 2 important injuries away from another annual season implosion. Having shipped Chamakh off what happens if Walcott and Giroud pick up injuries or burn-out? What are the chances of Diaby and Arteta remaining injury free for the rest of the season? I’m sure Wenger is better at calculating the odds than I am, but previous experience does not fill me with optimism. Having freed up spaces in these areas shouldn’t we be filling them with good quality proven back-up? I believe it’s both negligent and disingenuous to say its better to do nothing than strengthen in areas that may obviously need it, at the very least as a precautionary measure.
Wyn Mills
It's well known David Dein had a yacht in the south of France on which quite a few major deals were brokered, including Anelka's £23m transfer to Madrid. That whole deal only happened because Dein was holding out for £22m from Lazio. Not waving a flag for Dein but you can't just trash his influence. No need for him to fly down to Barcelona when he could cruise across and invite Villa to his onboard party.
Wyn Mills
@ LD - he said we were short of strikers because of Gervinho being away, ie temporarily. He never buys for the short term, as you know. He loaned Henry last year as a short-term solution for a short-term problem. We don't *need* anybody = he rates his players and has two in every position. Saying he wants to strengthen everywhere = I will never refuse a top quality player in any position. When he says he wants to "strengthen" the team, that means exactly that - get better players, not increase the number of players. He thinks we have enough. We've had two injury crises in midfield and we've been ok. We've even had the supposedly doomsday scenario of Arteta being injured - last year we couldn't win without him in the side, not the case this season. Constantly looking at players and not being sufficiently impressed by what he sees isn't contradictory - it's just how it goes. How can anyone say he's not doing anything, when none of us have any idea what he is doing? No-one being signed (yet) is not proof that we aren't trying. And what Amos said.
@ Wyn Mills - you're not paraphrasing, you're changing the meanng entirely. He says you have to be strong enough not to succumb to pressure to sign players you don't need.
Agree FunGunner, re @Wyn Mills. That was exactly my understanding of that comment by Wenger.
Then the meaning, in my view, is unclear. And it still does not change the underlying problem.
Wyn Mills
Cheers, Naijagunner. Anyway, this transfer window mullarkey will be over in 36 hours and we can all get back to enjoying Arsenal. :)
Fun, our win percentage without Arteta is less than 20% isn't it?
@ shewore - We have played the last 5 games without Arteta, losing two and winning three. That is a win rate of 60%. Last season, our win rate without him was 11%, and in number terms it was 1 game, from memory. Admittedly the sample sizes are not comparable but we've already won two more games without our smooth-haired Spaniard than we managed last season.
Arteta missed the last five weeks of the season last year and missed the whole of January too, West Brom was our only win. I wouldn't be so convinced that the sale of Clichy meant Wenger was definitely going to buy a LB in the summer of 2011, he sold Song this summer then pulled out of a deal to sign Sahin, so he must have decided that he wanted a midfielder, he hasn't signed one since. It's not just a demand that he buys any old player, but personally, and I accept that this is subjective, I've had the feeling for the last 4-5 seasons that our squad has been a few players short of pushing on and achieving more than they have. I've always had that feeling in August and then again in May. 4-5 seasons in a row now. If for 4-5 years they're really has been this massive dearth of players on the market that could have improved us whilst a huge stack of cash sits in our bank, then again, I have to ask why we are paying the manager £7.5m a year when a big part of his job is apparently impossible anyway.
Little Dutch
I'd say we're paying him £7.5m/year because if we only paid £2m, the best manager in the history of Arsenal Football Club would be Real Madrid manager by now and a lot of fans would be up in arms that we didn't pay more money and keep him, like they do with the players. Only this time they wouldn't have AW to blame.
But if such a huge part of the job, scouting, identifying and purchasing talent, is impossible, why would it matter if we only had an average manager?
Little Dutch
West Brom...wasn't that the match Marten Fulop was exposed as an Arsenal season ticket holder?
Wyn Mills
Because of all of the other parts of the job?
Given Wenger's recent on field record he wouldn't still be at Real Madrid, that's for sure.
Wyn Mills
Bit of a stretch, Wyn... if he was the Real manager he wouldn't have a recent on-field Arsenal record, would he. Real are 4 points closer to the top of their league than Arsenal are to the the top of the Premier league.
@ LD - I know you are not saying let's sign any old player, and I accept that sometimes AW may not jump the right way. But we are back to availablility again. He does manage it sometimes - Merts, Podolski, Cazorla - these people joined us 6-12 months after we first tried to get them. (They also joined at least partly because of him and wouldn't have gone to Sp*rs or Everton, I don't think.) You mention his pursuit of Sahin. The way I would look at it is that that doesn't show AW wanted *a* midfielder, it shows he wanted Sahin - saw in him the potential to be a special player. But not at the price quoted, without an option to buy. And maybe be has been vindicated - what contribution did he make to Liverpool's first half season?
If Wenger had gone this long finishing no higher than 3rd and without winning any silverware at Real he would not still be in the job. You can be certain of that. I don't think its much of a stretch to come to that conclusion.
Wyn Mills
No, that's fair enough. It hasn't happened, and we've no reason to believe that AW in a league where there are really only two teams of a similar draw, financial strength and fame would not be successful. All the evidence we have is that he would be.
It's rare to see you exaggerate quite as much LD. So the job Wenger has done in scouting, identifying and purchasing talent shows that it is impossible for him to do it and therefore he isn't worth what he is being paid? Or that we could get by with an average manager who would do as well? I'd have thought his record in that department alone would have shown that he's probably worth a great deal more than he's being paid. Frankly whether he's paid peanuts or 10 times what he's getting it still won't make more players available in this window.
Dein had a yacht in the South of France and Fiszman lived there (and for all I know had his own yacht). Didn't Fiszman use his private jet to fly Ramsey and his family to meet Wenger at the Euros and get him to sign? I'm not trashing what Dein did do at all but I don't think it was much more than any other similarly responsible director would do and without the commercial nous of Gazidis. The Dein family influence on transfers since has been pretty negative but it appears that Song was the last such connection to the club.
Yes, I believe, based on the last 5 years, his inaction in identifying and recruiting talent has diminished. I understand that there have been external pressures, but I still think he could have done better than he has done. Which is frankly not a lot given my opinion that the squad has been short of a couple of players in my view for a good 5 years. (Not to mention the increase in failures that he has bought). Like I say, I can swallow the "there are no players" for a couple of windows, but I think we're an about 10 now and for around 8 or 9 of those, I don't think we've taken the appropriate action. That's a big sample size.
Little Dutch
In the 5 years you speak of Mansour has spent close to a £1bn and Abramovich a mere half billion (on top of the half a billion he spent in the previous 5 years) recruiting players. Is it really any great surprise that it's been harder for us to recruit and retain talent? Yet we've still done so. The idea that all we need to have done is to have found a few better players than we did manage to find over those 5 years and we would have achieved better than 3rd or 4th is just a fanciful dream. Sure you can point to the buys that didn't work as well as the ones that did. But it isn't really any different than has always been the case. There were plenty of Stepanovs and Jeffers back in the day too!
Wenger is frustrating to even fans who greatly admire him forget those who have nothing but contempt for him (like a few here). I would say the club's primary problem in the last 5 years has been its inability to hang on to its top talent. Thats where the drawback has been. Not in the recruitment or the training of players, its the retention of the players. If players have to leave for reasons like higher wages, home country etc, Wenger cant be solely blamed for it especially given the unnatural explosion in wages offered by some sugar daddy clubs. It was Wenger who recruited and trained Cesc, Nasri, Hleb, Flamini and Song - all excellent players. It was Wenger's immense faith, training and motivation that made the raw talent of RvP blossom into the best striker in the premier league. While I agree that the last 24 months have not been a good period of player recruitment by Wenger's own high standards barring some gems, the main problem was player retention, not recruitment. The club along with the whole unsavoury commercial whoring of football could be to blame not the manager alone.
Good point Deltaforce and worth exploring. In attempting to measure Wenger's performance in player recruitment over the last 5 years since 2008 with the previous 5 years we've already noted that Mansour bought into City in 2008 and added another level of hyper-inflation making recruitment that much more competitive (it had already become more competitive because of Abramovich along with the rapid development of better scouting systems among all clubs). Then factor in that 5 years ago the summer of 2008 was when players started to use new contract law conditions to unilaterally terminate their contracts once they had reached an unprotected period and you can see that player retention was that much harder. It's pretty certain that Vieira would have left before he did had he had the same freedom as now. So not only was Mansour spending at silly levels, even sillier than Abramovich, at the same time player contract law made it easier for them and other richer clubs to prise players away from the clubs with the best players who couldn't compete with the same unrestricted resources. The only surprise in this is that any one should be surprised that Wenger and Arsenal are have found it harder in the last 5 years than it was previously.
Think I've already said I understand all of that but he should have done better than he has done. In 2008, Spurs finished 37 points behind us, there's been little more than a point between us the last couple of years now. I accept that City's spending makes it harder, I don't accept that it makes it impossible. I accept 3rd or 4th is pretty much the most we can expect, I don't accept that we should be scrapping for it with the likes of Spurs and Everton. We should be a comfortable 3rd or 4th given resources. Who knows, that extra player or two could have avoided us a few CL qualifiers and enabled us to progressively build a better squad because we'd have not needed to wait until the last week of August to scrap for players. We might even have won a cup or two as well in that time (silly me, what am I thinking? We can't compete with the likes of Bradford and Swansea). We might not have of course, we might be no better off. But I don't see that as a good reason not to try. (Before you strawman me, no, I'm not saying we should overspend like Leeds blah, blah, blah).
Little Dutch
We shouldn't have been in 3rd last season based on resources. We shouldn't have made 3rd three times in the last 5 years based on resources. In that time Spurs have finished 4th twice and 5th, 8th and 11th. Everton have finished 5th & 7th twice each and 8th. I think your idea that we shouldn't be scrapping it with other teams with finite resources is unrealistic. Teams are never static and progress not always linear. They develop and fade and rebuild over time. That's exactly what the competition should and would be about and exactly what would happen if resources were more balanced. It isn't that we can't do better than teams with greater resources (or that other teams with less resources can't do better than us on occasion) it's the fact that the level of those resources is so far off any realistic scale which has distorted the competition. The team with the most resources won't always triumph though it will usually do better over any length of time but the sheer scale of what City and Chelsea have done over the last 5 years has made it difficult for us to compete with them and ManU but also made it difficult to build and maintain a settled consistent side to be comfortably away from anyone else. Also the new TV deal will increase the available resources to teams lower in the league so it's set to get even tighter. You missed B'ham off the list of teams we can't compete with in cup competitions - and Swindon, Wrexham, Walsall and a few others I guess. That jibe doesn't really make any point at all does it but it's an effective if disingenuous jibe to resort to in atmospheres like this. You didn't need the Leeds financial collapse to try to make a point because it is clear that the club wouldn't ever overspend anyway but it's also clear enough that they're willing to spend and are not short of cash to do so. However, that doesn't mean that in any given transfer window there's a player worth having that is attainable. But then again I suppose there must be simply because Wenger is being paid well.
We were told that moving to the Emirates would put us in a position to compete with the likes of Utd. So why aren't we? And why are Utd able to build and maintain a settled consistent side while our best players leave? Yes, the landscape has changed, but fundamentally we are still fishing in the same waters as Utd, Spurs and Everton, and frankly struggling to keep pace at the moment. These teams seem to have had no problem finding players who will improve them. So why are we different? There's a touch of the Emperor's new clothes in some of the statements Wenger makes in only bringing in top top quality. Sometimes you don't necessarily need the finest, you just need to cover your @ss.
Wyn Mills
To try to answer your own question imagine where we might be and what our future prospects might be if we hadn't made the move. Then factor in what has happened both since the stadium project got under way and what has happened in the game since we moved into the stadium. Some of the potential answers can be found in these forums but there's plenty more honest perspective elsewhere. I reckon that ManU are beginning to feel the pinch a little hence their endorsement of some form of FFP in the PL but you also have to remember that they developed their stadium much earlier and were probably the most astute of all English clubs in focussing early on commercial development. They've been able to invest in their team at a high level, without as much disruption as we've had , for quite a long while now.
We have the ability to invest, we're just not doing it in a meaningful way (and I don't mean inflating our wage bill). We've been found wanting in key areas of the pitch at different times (left back being our current issue). Blaming City and Chelsea for nicking our players is all well and good, but we've made a mint from those transfers without taking the advantage to really strengthen the team where its been required. The keeper situation is illustrative. The disruption is partially of our own making. The club can't just sit on its hands waiting for FFP and pronouncing itself happy with reaching 4th every season. Of course players will leave. You often have to aim high to hit your target.
Wyn Mills
If a replacement as good as Nasri was available at the time City took him then in probability City would have bought him instead of Nasri which is why they paid us as much as they did for him. Of course it's difficult to replace your best players. I'm not sure what the keeper situation is and therefore what it illustrates. No one can see for sure what would have happened if we'd bought this player instead of that player though it's always easy to know in hindsight what has worked and what hasn't. If you take an objective look at what has really influenced our ability to compete over the last 7 years then irrespective of the smaller things that we might or might not have done better (we should have beaten B'ham in the CC) in probability the bigger picture wouldn't have developed any differently than it has done.

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8. Newcastle 16 6 5 5 -4 23
9. Swansea 16 6 4 6 2 22

Breaking League News

Bruce: Swansea City At Home Is a 'Cup Final'
» Swansea : 18/12/2014 21:57:00
Chelsea`s Zouma Joining Besiktas on Loan?
» Chelsea : 18/12/2014 19:02:00
Liverpool: Balotelli Banned And Fined
» Liverpool : 18/12/2014 18:46:00
John Alder's NUFC Collection To Be Auctioned
» Newcastle : 18/12/2014 18:10:00
Villa In The NON Rip Off List For Mascots
» Aston Villa : 18/12/2014 17:09:00

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