16 June 2013

Barcelona makes a shock move for Koscielny...

...and it was enough to make me spit out my coffee. Apparently, Vilanova is so desperate to shore up his defense that he's willing to have Barca pony up a whopping £12.7m for Koscielny. Really, Tito? Is that the best your lot can do? Listen, I thought I put y'all in your place back when Pep was after Wilshere. Apparently, he didn't pass the message along to you before he left.

Pity. I used to respect Barcelona, having perfected the tiki-taka and playing such beautiful footy and so on. I didn't even mind much when Fabregas left, nor when Song did. Now, however, it's getting a little sad. What happened to La Masia? Who has it produced of late? Alba, maybe. Dos Santos. After that, the pickings get a little slim. So Barcelona is reduced to scrounging around, hoping to prise our players away on the slim rationale that we're Barca-lite? Well, they'll have to do better than an offer of £12.7m for Koscielny. Sure, it may be in line with his market value, but that doesn't do the man justice.

I get it, though. It was only a few days ago that Kos said the following:
If the club has the means to compete with the best, I have no reason to leave. But if it fights every year for Champions League [qualification], it’s hard psychologically to be under such constant pressure. I do not want to go anywhere. Of course, I want to know another championship, but it’s complicated. I want to lift trophies and to have a winning record. I hope the club will give me the means. If this weren’t the case, I’d look elsewhere.
So I could see where Barcelona would take encouragement from that. It's like when you have a crush on a girl who doesn't even know your name, but you hear from a friend of a friend that she'd kiss you if you were the last man on earth. It stirs the heart and quickens the pulse, of course. Once the flood flood of hormones subsides, you realize how hollow and empty you've left yourself.

However, you've gotta do better than £12.7m to turn Wenger's head (I'm pretending like Vilanova is my reader now, just so the rest of you know). Look at the broader situation. Do you really think he's going to let yet another beloved player leave after the last two seasons of acrimonious summer transfer windows? You do know how much we've come to enjoy Koscielny, right? You do know he's under contract until 2017?

Look. I get were you're coming from. You have Lionel Messi, but the rest of your starting lineup averages, what, 43 years of age? I kid, I kid. Your lineup does need some sprucing up, but it's not going to come at our expense. You want Gervinho or Chamakh? Maybe Bendtner? Sure. If it's defenders you want, I'm not sure where Djourou is at the moment, but we can get him on the line for you.

Let's face facts. You're talking about offering face value for a beloved player with four years left on his contract, one who averaged a 7.56 rating from whoscored.com over our last eleven games. Nope. Face value just ain't gonna do it. We see you for what you've become, Barca, and we're not going to enable bad habits anymore. Arsenal players are like crack to you, and you crave just one more hit, don't cha, baby? It's hard to find players and make them into superstars. We know. It's what we do. With that in mind, we have to administer a bit of tough love. We're putting our foot down. No Kos for you!

If you're just desperate for a cheap thrill, I hear John Terry might be available...