Hello all. Quite wanted to write this blog yesterday but, frankly, London was too hot. It was muggier than the room containing the world’s largest collection of mugs, and I was sweating like I had hyperhidrosis.
Today, however, things have returned to normal somewhat with the promise of thunder, lightning, and lots and lots of rain. And, of course, with a story about Cesc Fabregas and Barcelona all over our back pages. Yesterday the BBC published an article quoting a ‘senior Arsenal official’ as saying:
“The offer was made formally in writing to our chief executive (Ivan Gazidis), and we said no straight away.”
Asked if the club expected another bid, the source said:
“Possibly. If it’s enough I expect we’ll have to sell.”
Which is as close to an admission of availability as you’re going to get, and rather different in tone from the bullishness of twelve months ago.
It looks to me as if we’re trying to smoke out Barca’s interest early in the summer. If their second offer is in the region of £40m, a deal will be done. If it’s not, they can forget about it for another twelve months. Cesc is privately insisting he has no interest in agitating for a move, so the ball is firmly in Barca’s court. With their bid for Alexis Sanchez seemingly stalling, perhaps there’ll be some movement on this one within the next seven days.
The latest on Ricky Alvarez is that our interest is definitely concrete. There has been contact between the player’s agent and Arsenal executives, and negotiations with his club, Velez Sarsfield, have begun. It still seems an odd signing, but at this stage it’s impossible to guess how many could leave the club this summer.
One who looks like staying is Abou Diaby, after sources close to the player told me Arsenal had rebuffed a £10m offer from a Turkish club for his services. I’m sure that’ll drive some of you potty – it seems like a good deal to me, too – but perhaps with the possibility of both Denilson and Fabregas leaving this summer Arsene feels the need to hold on to the remaining central midfielders.
Finally, a few people on Twitter have been linking us with Sunderland’s Scottish goalkeeper Craig Gordon. It’s nonsense. I’d be surprised if we bought a goalkeeper at all this summer.
For now, I don’t know anything more about Gary Cahill, Gervinho, or others. It might be of interest to you that Arsenal.com have launched our 125th anniversary away kit, which instead appears to be a 124th anniversary Wycombe home kit.
Tata for now.