06 September 2014

'Tis the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune...

The butchers are sharpening their knives, what with no actual footy to discuss and petty scores to settle. Between the aligning of malevolent forces—an interlull and the close of the transfer-window, to whom can we turn for our daily tempest in a teapot? Surely, there is someone out there who can say something stupid enough to manufacture some kind of kerfuffle to help us while away the time. Piers, do you have any revisionist history to tweet? No? Specious One, surely you can find a way to insult someone, be he a player in your own squad or the manager of a rival squad? Hm. Nothing. Ah, fiddlesticks. Perhaps it's just as well. I'll just shuffle along until—what's that? Jamie Redknapp on line two? Well, patch him through, by all means!

04 September 2014

Özil introduces himself to Welbeck...

With one round of international friendlies over, players checked in with their clubs, getting massages, updates from phyisos and managers, and—in some cases—meeting new teammates. So it was at London Colney when Danny Welbeck stopped in to get reacquainted with a training ground he knew a bit of from training with the Three Lions, but it was still with some trepidation that he went into the locker room. Would he be greeted as a conquering hero or ignored as a consolation prize. Most of the lads were preoccupied, sorting their kits and all, and a tentative Welbeck made his way to a vacant locker to stake his claim. As he was starting to unpack. he felt a presence behind him. There was no sound, just...a presence. Almost intangible...but...there, somehow.

02 September 2014

Van Persie advises Welbeck on what to expect at Arsenal

It was a desultory, diffident day at Old Trafford. The lads were sorting their kits and sundries. With the transfer-window closed and an interlull beckoning, the mood was downcast, even somber. Whether this reflected the ambitions of a squad that had again stumbled to yet another disappointing result or the bewilderment of having splurged on another scorer for a squad that was bereft of and desperate for defenders is for the therapists to sort. Yes, there was something melancholy in the air, a feeling of bereavement. It was into this atmosphere that Robin "Vanchester" van Persie found his way over to the locker of Danny "dat guy" Welbeck for a tête-à-tête.

01 September 2014

Danny Welbeck= Thierry Henry 2.0. There. I said it.

So, the transfer-window has closed and we have the center-forward we need. He's been signed in Arsène's favorite transfer-fee range, £16m or so.  He's been van Persied into irrelevance, if not oblivion, forced to play wide when his strengths and instincts clearly indicated that he should play through the centre. No, he's not Falcao or Cavani or Costa, but he brings with him buckets of potential that have been left to languish at Old Trafford while he carried water for the likes of van Persie and Rooney. Rather than do so for Falcao, he's seen the writing on the wall and come to a club that can make the most of his prodigious talents. No, he may not boast the stats that other transfer-targets could, but I seem to remember that the same was true of a certain Frenchmen who came into the club and went on to accomplish a feat or two.

Falcao to United, City, or Arsenal? The clock is ticking...

It's hard at the best of times to assess a player's value. Was Bale worth the transfer-fee that Real Madrid paid for him? Will Costa prove his worth this season? So much depends on the clubs' needs and the player's desire. As concerns Monaco, they're apparently desperate to offload Falcao so as to avoid incurring FFP penalties. As such, they might seem eager to sell or loan the man. At the other end, then, it becomes a matter of how much desperation potential buyers are feeling, with an x-factor given to the player's whims. I hope and I pray that these factors tip the scales in Arsenal's favor...

31 August 2014

Leicester: do we want three points or Aston Villa part deux?

So we go into today's match tense and wary, perhaps worried more about signings that may or may not come by Monday's deadline than we are about our opponent. I won't give the Foxes back-handed compliments such as calling them 'plucky' or 'feisty.' They've started the campaign brightly, with a well-earned draw at home with Everton and a closer-than-it-looks 2-0 loss at Stamford Bridge to a Chelsea side who look frighteningly capable of going for ten goals in a match after thrashing Everton 6-3 at Goodison Park. In other words, then, sneer at the newly-promoted at your own risk.