Archive for July 12th, 2006

Saviola + Ribery = Reyes?

727 comments July 12th, 2006

News that Arsenal are being linked with bids for Franck Ribery and Javier Saviola has, I have to admit, confused me a little.  After a season where we struggled with the physical side of the game, and having lost perhaps our most imposing squad member in Sol Campbell, being linked with two feather-weight attacking players didn’t make a huge amount of sense.

What’s more, there doesn’t appear to be much room for either player in the squad.  Until, that is, you consider the possibility of Jose Reyes leaving.  We all know plenty about his desire to play for Madrid, and with Chelsea unlikely to sell Arjen Robben, another left-winger may be required at Real.  Whilst Arsenal are unwilling to discuss the possibility of Cesc Fabregas leaving, the under-achieving Reyes might be another story.

And if Reyes were to depart, his versatility would leave us with two positional holes to fill: winger and striker.  Or, potentially, Ribery and Saviola.  Ribery has Reyes’ pace and drive, and according to this fascinating article, some of his mental traits too.  This quote has to be seen to be believed:

“Last week there was a comical, though quite touching moment, involving Ribery and his desire to avoid being interviewed. As he walked through the dreaded “mixed zone” â?? where the players, following matches, have to walk a corridor in which journalists can interview them â?? Ribery pretended to be on his mobile phone in order to avoid being intercepted by a reporter. Except, he was holding his phone upside down, and clearly wasn’t talking to anyone.”

Whilst he lacks the willingness to track back that Reyes has displayed, he possesses a greater threat with the ball at his feet, and a superior goal record.

Upfront, Saviola shares Reyes’ zip and ability to drop off the front man.  It’s no secret that Reyes was bought as a deep-lying partner to Thierry Henry: with that combination never truly clicking, Saviola could be seen as the solution.  As it happens, his agent is in London as we speak to discuss a potential move.

I do like Jose.  He tries his heart out.  But it’s never really happened for him in England, in either of the positions we’ve mentioned.  Being left out of the Champions League Final side is indicative of how little he is trusted at Arsenal.  It’s well known he wants a return to Spain, and perhaps now is the time.

There’s more movement on the squad number front as Kolo and Senderos take 5 and 6 respectively.  And so they ought: two superb centre-backs who will be a fine defensive pairing next season.  Rumours suggest they might be joined by Curtis Davies.  Whatever happens, hopefully we’ll see some movement sooner rather than later: all this speculating is rather exhausting.

Search Gunnerblog

Get your Gunnerblog t-shirts now!

get regular updates from GS with twitter

Top Gunn

Cesc Fabregas
The man in form.

    Retro Arsenal T-Shirts from - Bringing Back The Good Old Days!: Click Here!

Latest Posts

Sponsored Links


July 2006
« Jun   Aug »

Posts by Month

Most Recent Posts

Posts by Category


Powered By

eXTReMe Tracker