He loves us, he really, really loves us!

I'm thinking of a mineral.

Arsene Wenger IS NOT leaving.

As I was perusing the morning news stories, feeling smug in my knowledge that Wenger was going no where, I tried to imagine what it would have been like if I woke up this morning and read a headline like… Wenger Releases Statement: I Need to Fulfil My Real Dream! and I could only come up with one word: Football Apocalypse.

Now, I realize that technically that’s two words but if you squash them together real close using negative kerning you get something like ‘footballapocalypse’ which pretty much sums up how I felt. I wondered if I’d even bother carrying on as an Arsenal blogger, I mean, what would be the point? Arsene Wenger is all I’ve known as an Arsenal supporter and to have him leave like that would be devastating.

Thankfully, we don’t have to worry about this until next year when some prat stands up at the shareholder’s meeting and suddenly thinks he’s talking to one of his mates at the pub and lets out some stream of stupidity. Then we get to do this all over again.

Just to recap what Arsene Wenger has done:

3 EPL Titles — the same number that Chelsea has had in their entire history
4 FA Cups — the same number that Chelsea has had in their entire history
4 Community Shields — one more than Chelsea has had in their entire history
Champions League Runners-up
UEFA Cup Runners-up

And this year he took a team of rag tag youths and half legged geriatric Suburbans and got them to the semi-final of the FA Cup and the Champions league. All the while spending about as much money as it would cost to feed the team at Denny’s.

Let’s face it, Arsene Wenger is the best thing that has ever happened to this club. Someone should throw a parade.

Eduardo Setback

The club released an official statement that Eduardo has had to have “simple revision surgery” on the ankle that Martin Taylor tried to destroy. Follow up surgeries are routine and I’m thinking this is a great time to do this. Yes, he’ll miss scoring a dozen world class goals for Croatia, but it means he’ll be back and 100% just in time for pre-season.

On to the important stuff

Thierry Henry is racing to be fit to face Man U in the finals and I’m rooting for him to be so well rested that he comes in, scores a hat trick, and finishes the game with a shot so thunderous that when it ricochets off the post it decapitates Rayne Looney, kneecaps Cronolda, and finds its final resting place in Sir Alex Ferguson’s nutsack.

I’ll be at Doyle’s, wearing my Thierry Henry Arsenal strip.

And one final little bit of news. It turns out some new fangled news aggregator has picked up the blog and I’m now getting 3 times the number of hits per day. I basically jumped from 1000 hits a day to 3000 hits a day. This means, of course, that my loyal readers will be seeing a lot of new comments in the comment jar from people who don’t really understand my sense of humor and haven’t been reading the blog very long.

Let’s all try to get along as best we can and remember that I love you all like children — which means that I love some of you more than others but I would never say which ones, publicly.

Transfer Tuesday

David Villa, Worth More than Ronaldo?

It’s probably the most ridiculous release clause of any contract, ever:  David Villa’s £130m release clause would make him worth two Ronaldos. A goal poacher, worth two Ronaldos? A goal poacher, worth an entire Newcastle United?

Yeah. It’s funny to me how this cat gets so much cred.

Arsenal have a player who has proven himself time and again as probably the best goal poacher in the history of the game and yet, he get’s short shrift from some Arsenal fans. Eduardo has 14 goals in 24 international matches giving him a ratio of.583 goals per game, Villa has 25 in 43 for a ratio of .581. In league play, Villa’s ratio for Valencia is .666 while at Dinamo Zagreb, Eduardo pulled in .7474.

Yeah, yeah, yeah, there are lies, damn lies and statistics, whatever. Eduardo is better than Villa and you cannot convince me otherwise.

The good news about this story is that at £130m Villa is so far beyond Arsenal’s means that maybe people can stop linking him to us. It’s not going to happen, ok?

Dog Fight Over Adebayor

This is the kind of transfer speculation that I like to report! The Daily Mail is reporting that AC Milan are now competing with Inter Milan for the signature of Arsenal’s want-away striker, Emannuel Adebayor.

Let’s hope this turns into a 4 dog race with AC Milan, Inter, Chelsea, and Man City all fighting over the scraps.

OH MY GOD THIS IS STILL DRAGGING ON

Peter Hill-Wood stirred the tempest in a tea pot today, criticizing the shareholders who he felt were disrespectful to Arsene Wenger duiring last week’s shareholder’s meeting.

Frankly, some of the questions were quite disgraceful. There you have the most successful manager in our history and two or three of the shareholders made the most negative and somewhat hostile and sarcastic comments, which I think were completely out of order.

Would everyone please grow up? Some people are going to be jerks, they are usually the loudest people in the room. Ignore them. Most supporters are adults and while we might criticize the club and the manager in private we would be respectful in person. People who can’t be respectful in person? Not adults.

At the same time, you’re an adult too, you need to accept the criticism, answer it, and move on with your life. When we hear that “Wenger has £30m to spend on a single player if he wants” and then he signs Silvestre for half a million, there’s a huge disconnect.  If we think that our club is going to get a big name in and the boss re-assures us all summer that he’s looking at two “big” signings and specifies defense and midfield and then we get Silvestre, it makes us wonder what the hell just happened?

It would be like telling your wife, in front of all your friends, that you have £150k to spend on a new car for Christmas. You go on to explain that you’re thinking of getting a car that gets good mileage and has a strong record of reliability, and it’s fast and sexy. They would start thinking about maybe a BMW or at least an Acura and get all excited. Then come Christmas morning you show up with a used Suburban, that has a huge Man U sticker on the trunk: it gets terrible mileage, it’s got all kinds of reliability problems, and it only cost £500.

Your wife and friends would think you’re nuts.

Some people, real jerks, are going to be snarky and call Silvestre a used Suburban other people will ask

Arsene, you and the club categorically stated all summer that you had £30m to spend on two “big” signings and specifically targeted defense as an area that needed improvement. Yet, the only defensive signing was Silvestre. What can you tell the supporters about what happened in the summer with transfers that led to signing Silvestre.

The question is valid either way, and unfortunately, remains unanswered.

Youth Attack

Arsene Wenger has heaped praise upon the Arsenal youth team ahead of their FA Youth cup match against Liverpool, saying that several of the players could start featuring in the first team as soon as next year.

They will be like a new signing.

Meanwhile, Traore, who we know for sure is returning from his season long loan at Pompey, scored his first ever league goal last night. Yay.

Alonso Watch

I’ve made no bones about wanting Xavi Alonso at Arsenal, so you’ll have to indulge me in reporting that it’s looking less likely every day.  Real Madrid are mooting a £21m offer, via the press of course, which is £3m more than Arsenal reportedly refused to offer last year. I have to say that £21m seems a fair price after this season’s performance, even if it means that Arsenal have been priced out of the market.

Future England Number One Watch

Current England Number One, David ‘Insano’ James has thrown England into a “keeper krisis” by having surgery.

YES

This is the perfect opportunity for Manuel Almunia to step in and claim the spot for himself. Go for it Manny.

One Last Bolded Headline

See you tomorrow!

Top 10 Potential Signing Stories

As the football season winds down, the transfer season is just about to kick off and I thought I’d get a jump on the competition (the English/Spanish/Italian press) and name my top 10 potential signing stories. These are not my top 10 potential signings because as everyone knows, I have a horrible eye for talent.These are the top 10 potential signing stories: the 10 players, who have not been linked but are most likely to be linked to Arsenal by the press over the next three months. I picked these names using the tried and true journalism method called “make shiat up.”

10. Simone  Perrotta — Roma, box-to-box midfielder. 31 year old midfielder for Roma, look for the press to play up the fact that he’s “experienced” and that he was born in England, even though he plays for the Italian national team. Also look for Platini’s Blatter to explode about how this would/would not qualify him for the 6+5 rule. Doesn’t sign for Arsenal because he’s Italian and no one from Italy wants to play in England.

9. Chiellini — Juve, center-back. Chiellini is a 24 year old, 6’1″ center back who currently plays for Juventus and has been capped by Italy 18 times. The press will play up his youth. Doesn’t sign for Arsenal because Juve offer him a better contract and they just fired their coach.

8. Barzagli — Wolfsburg, center-back. Italian international (fallen out of favor), experienced, and CHEAP. Doesn’t sign for Arsenal because he’s crap.

7. Carlos Machena – Valencia, center-back. One of many Valencia players that the press will link to Arsenal, they absolutely love linking Valencia players because of the supposed fire sale that’s going to happen any moment… now… any moment…  Also, this player is “versatile” and the press love linking “versatile” players to Arsenal. Doesn’t sign for Arsenal because Valencia want £70m.

6. Daniel Agger — Liverpool, center-back. I know this is a shock inclusion here but given the sheer number of articles linking Agger out of Liverpool, plus his experience in England, his youth, and his height, I think this is going to be an Arsenal transfer story irregardless the fact he just signed a new contract. Doesn’t sign for Arsenal because several of their back line is leaving and he will get a lot of PT this year.

5. Hitzlsperger — Stuttgart, midfielder. Played for Villa in the past, currently in the national team, left footed, tall, German, speaks English. Pick any combination of things above to link him to Arsenal. Doesn’t sign for Arsenal becuse the French hate ze Germans.

4. Phil Jagielka — Everton, center-back. He’s been linked to the club before and a lot of Gooners want him. Plus he’s English. Doesn’t sign for Arsenal because the English hate the French nearly as much as they hate ze Germans.

3. Rio Mavuba — Lille, defensive midfielder. This is actually the kind of player Arsene would have bought in the past and if Mavuba was 16 he would buy him today! Unfortunately, he 25, only 5’7″ and only been called up for France 6 times, which means he’s probably not ever going to be a world class holding midfielder. Which means Arsene will probably buy him!

2. Jérémy Toulalan — Lyon, defensive midfielder. 25 year old player who has had a good season with Lyon, good work rate, good passer, good tackler. Look for the press to play up his French-ness, then call him “the next Makalele” and finish off with the whole “Arsenal need a defensive midfielder” cliche. Doesn’t sign for Aresenal because OL wants too much for him.

1. Raul Albiol – Valencia, center back. Ok, so check this guy out, he’s tall, he’s 23, he plays for Spain, he is versatile and he’s been linked to the club before, and even my readers have targeted him. This is a shoo-in for transfer story of the season. He plays for Valencia so expect the whole “Valencia fire sale” angle. Doesn’t sign for Arsenal because he might actually improve the squad immediately.

Think you have a better one?  List it below.