Now what? Having already signed Sánchez for something in the £30-35m range and with rumors that we'll have Mathieu Debuchy in for close to £10m, we face an awkward and uncertain period. It's 12 July, and we've completed one major signing already. Do we sit back, content with the notion that we've bolstered the squad quite well enough already, or do we keep scratching the silly season itch? I suspect the latter, if out of habit if not out of necessity. With six weeks or more still to go before the transfer window closes, we're probably going to crave more news, not less. Could we really count on ourselves to leave well enough alone? Nope, not with a rumored £65m or still in reserve and names like Sami Khedira drifting in the breeze...
12 July 2014
10 July 2014
By now, I'm sure you've heard that we've signed Alexis Sánchez. I won't pretend to be the one breaking the news to you. Financial details are still forthcoming, but it's official, at least as far as Arsenal.com is concerned. By this point, we're ready to start sussing out what his arrival will mean. Is he the striker we've longed for? How will he fit in? What does his arrival mean for the likes of Giroud, Walcott, or Cazorla, among others? He may not seem to be as top-drawer as Diego Costa or Edinson Cavani, but part of this implies that his potential is not yet tapped. His arrival, now that it's confirmed, heralds a fair number of changes for formation, strategy, and tactics, with all of those changes trending positively for the squad and the club itself.
09 July 2014
Well, this is embarrassing. Barely three days after offering up this measly defense of Özil, I find myself having to eat my words. Not only did the £42m-man fail to score on not one but two gilt-edged chances, he registered but a solitary assist on a night when Germany could have scored ten goals but settled for a lucky seven. Even then, his assist, which came on Germany's fifth goal, was so superfluous as to barely warrant a mention. At this point, I don't know what was more embarrassing, but I have three options: one, Brazil's performance. Two, Özil's failure to have any meaningful impact on a match in which something like five new records were set. Three, my apparent inability to understand that only those who score these goals have any meaningful impact on a match.
08 July 2014
The rumors are multiplying like wet mogwais, and some of them have been fed after midnight. Chiellini and Branislovic have been warned. As it now goes, shops around the Camp Nou are selling jerseys featureing what was Sánchez's #9 with Suarez's name on them instead. This stops short of confirming anything, of course, as I'm pretty sure it's possible to have any name printed on any jersey. However, that cute l'il kit comes amidst a maelstrom of other reports suggesting that Suarez has confirmed his move to Barça and that Sánchez will soon do the same with Arsenal. I could care less about where Suarez ends up as long as it's not the Prem. I'm not sure why Barça need him but who am I to eny them their next shiny bauble? If we can sign Sánchez, clearing space in Barça's roster while helping them "balance" their books, so much the better.
06 July 2014
It's getting harder and harder to resist the temptation to feel like something special is about to happen around Alexis Sánchez, what with odds around him joining Arsenal going from 8/15 just two days ago to climbing to 1/2 Sunday. Even more mouth-watering is the news that Barça have scheduled a press conference for Monday at 11am, London time, to discuss who knows what? It's tantalizing to think that the presser might relate to Sánchez's potential departure, although it more-likely has something to do with some other player arriving. It's unlikely for a club to schedule a press conference to announce a player departing. Still, 'round these parts, hope springs eternal, even if that means rational thought takes a back seat.