Archive for June, 2005

Arsene hoping Celtic will make a man of Bhoy Aliadiere…

78 comments June 29th, 2005

Every season Shoot or 4-4-2 or whoever publish a Premiership Preview, and for every team they give a “One to Watch“, a young starlet who seems destined to burst onto the big stage.

Jeremie Aliadiere, now 22, must have been featured in this category for the past 3 or 4 years, and yet, due a succession of injuries and rich competition for places, he’s still to make the breakthrough.

At Carling Cup and Reserve team level he is a goal-machine. What he needs now is top class experience.

Which doesn’t really explain why he’s going to play in Scotland, with Celtic.

However, it’s important to remember that Celtic will have the opportunity to qualify for the Champions League. They’re a big club, and players like Hartson and Sutton are no mugs. Aliadiere will score goals in Scottish football, that’s almost certain.

A deal with the Bhoys could be finalised this week. Jeremie recently signed a new three year contract at Arsenal, meaning we can only benefit if he does well: either he returns to us a more accomplished player, with a two year deal still to run, or we’ll be able to sell him for a decent sum.

Personally, I hope he makes it with us. He’s been very unlucky.

In other news, Edu is not alone in hoping that we sign Robinho.

Fear not: even if we miss out on the little Brazilian, we will sign a forward in the £15m bracket this summer.

£10m Hleb becomes our first summer signing…

17 comments June 28th, 2005

Well, it’s probably closer to £6m, rising to £10m, but yeah.

Arsene Wenger promised signings, and we’ve now got an international class attacking midfielder. Excellent.

There seems to be a bit of negativity surrounding the transfer, primarily over the hefty-sounding fee. It’s important to realise that the deals we put together are often very carefully structured – When it was claimed we’d paid £17m for Reyes, it turned out to be closer to £10m with potential additional fees.

In yet more good news, Robin van Persie was, after 2 hard weeeks, yesterday released by the Dutch authorities. Let’s hope any ensuing trial does not result in his return.

And lastly, Stuart Taylor has gone to Aston Villa, to be number two to Thomas Sorenson. To be honest, I’m not sure why he’s bothered…

Robinho’s Agent Has Been Shown Around Colney

16 comments June 27th, 2005

This is what I was told two days ago, and quotes from the little Brazilian’s agent confirm that he was given the training ground tour by David Dein last Thursday. However, they’re followed by an even more important statement: “Robinho doesn’t want to go there“.

Robinho wants to go to Madrid. Which is fair enough. He and Real have an agreement over a very lucrative contract. However, as yet, there is no deal between Real and santos.

Arsenal, meanwhile, appear to have stepped in with a £14m bid which could gazzump Real’s paltry £11m offer.

Wait and see, I suppose. This does confirm, though, that our interest is very real, and that we have the funds to spend big on bigger names.

Which could all be part of Wenger’s “cunning plan, which claims to focus on the recruitment of “two world class players“.

Let’s hope so.

Hleb Signing Imminent….

36 comments June 24th, 2005

Or so it would seem.

Wenger has stated that “The transfer will be completed in the next few days. I think he can start packing his bags to come to us”. Knowing Arsene as I don’t, he wouldn’t say something as clear-cut as that unless the deal was pretty much a certainty.

A fee of around £6m has been suggested, and that’s a pretty hefty sum for us to pay. Reyes aside, it’s our biggest buy since Gilberto.

Hleb will provide competition for places all accross the midfield, and perhaps even in the secondary striker’s role. With 14 assists for Stuttgart last season, his capacity to provide goals is evident.

It has not escaped my attention that a bunch of other Arsenal sites have changed their colours to a more “redcurrant” shade, to match the new kit.

If you think I can be arsed to do that, you are very wrong.

Have a good weekend.

Wigan will be the last team to play at Highbury.

11 comments June 23rd, 2005

Lucky them.

Here are our fixtures in full (subject to change):

13 Newcastle (H)
20 Chelsea (A)
23 Fulham (H)
27 Liverpool (A)

10 Middlesbrough (A)
17 Everton (H)
24 West Ham (A)

1 Birmingham (H)
15 West Brom (A)
22 Man City (H)
29 Spurs (A)

5 Sunderland (H)
19 Wigan (A)
26 Blackburn (H)

3 Bolton (A)
10 Newcastle (A)
17 Chelsea (H)
26 Charlton (A)
28 Portsmouth (H)
31 Aston Villa (A)

2 Man USA (H)
14 Middlesbrough (H)
21 Everton (A)
31 West Ham (H)

4 Birmingham (A)
11 Bolton (H)
25 Blackburn (A)

4 Fulham (A)
11 Liverpool (H)
18 Charlton (H)
25 Portsmouth (A)

1 Aston Villa (H)
8 Man USA (A)
15 West Brom (H)
17 Man City (A)
22 Spurs (H)
29 Sunderland (A)

7 Wigan (H)


It’s a tough start, but, Man U aside, a comfortable run-in. My advice would be: don’t get disheartened if we’re not top in October.

Elsewhere, the Pires to Valencia stories are gathering pace. Might be some truth in this one. What’s interesting is that I keep hearing that Hleb plays not on the left, but on the right. Hmmm.


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