Wenger gives update on Giroud, Koscielny, Walcott & Diaby


Arsene Wenger has confirmed that Olivier Giroud and Laurent Koscielny will likely return to the Arsenal squad for Monday’s clash with Reading although Theo Walcott is apparently no nearer to a return.

Koscielny, who suffered a groin strain against Everton a couple of weeks ago, will most likely take up a position on the bench, while Giroud, who missed Wednesday’s capitulation against Bradford, returns following a knock picked up in the win over West Bromwich Albion.

Theo Walcott hasn’t featured since injuring his calf in the defeat against Swansea at the beginning of the month. It remains to be seen whether he is thrown into the mix for the busy Christmas schedule, but you can’t help but feel the nearer it gets to the January transfer window (without him signing a contract) the more he may find himself marginalised.

The boss was also quizzed on the current state of Abou Diaby admitting that he is not in a position to put a date on the player’s return.

“We are in no-man’s land on that front. He is working, but we are waiting.”

It doesn’t sound positive for Diaby but it’s fair to say he won’t be playing for us again in 2012.


    • i was reading somewhere, some random said that Arsenals season went down the moment Diaby got injured, and i thought to myself ‘how true!’
      We need some midfield enforcer like Felliani, Diame (3.5million release clause!!! Or Wanyama, but we’ll probably end up with some French dude. i think that’s the missing piece in the midfield.

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      • yeah diaby is big strong and dose well when he plays…..but surely it crossed wenger mind that he would not stay fit for long….wenger should of bough another big strong midfield in the summer…..carzola, arteta and wilshare all great players but they need someone big in the middle…..

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      • Call it what you will but we can not rely on Diaby to ever be healthy. We should bring in another player to fill that void. Felliani would get my vote first for his quality, premier league experience, etc. If not I’d go after Belhanda or M’Vila

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      • I agree, I think we desperately need a solid midfielder with some creative and specially defensive skills, an Abou Diaby type of player.

        Abou, if you read this blog (as I guess a lot of the Arsenal players do), we all hope you’ll come back stronger than ever !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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      • Wenger needs to be a bit more decisive with keeping and cutting players. I admire Wenger’s loyalty and faith in his players, but there are times when hard decisions need to be made in the interest of the club. Diaby may be one of those cases. That Scot up in Manchester, as much as we dislike him, that’s one thing at which he’s really good. Business, not personal.

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      • I think its time to cut Diaby out of our future plans. Im a massive fan of his at times he is brilliant. The club has to start moving forward a replacement has to be bought in january window. Not interested in anything Theo has to say anymore. If he really wants to play for the club he would sign the contract. Kos and Giroud should both start on Monday.

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      • Fellaini, was only slightly above average in a deep lying midfield role at Everton. He’s been awesome this season with his attacking role up front. If we’re looking to replace Diaby with Fellaini then I’m afraid we’d be wasting the Belgian’s talents.

        Perhaps our solution lies in, not just a single defensive midfielder role, but a formation switch to a 4-2-4 without a dedicated striker. Arteta and Jack can hold down midfield with either one providing the engine to bring the ball forward, while Cazorla, Rosicky, TW/AOC, and Podolski can provide the attacking arc. Gervinho and Arshavin (who can still have brilliant spells) need to be thrown into the attacking arc for rotation. The Giroud route is strictly Arsenal’s plan B – one that we haven’t had for a while. I call this idea ‘the Gooner Arc’. You heard about it here first people!

        Le Prof, you have my number. COYG!

        The Backseat Prof. rests.

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      • box to box, dutch, good technique, wide range of passing, composed on the ball, doesn’t get tired, but his best position is the ‘link’ between the cdm and cam.

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      • So were a lot of players AW brought in. Van Puss is a big example. If AW can train Van Puss to perform for 7 odd years trophyless, Strootman could be done too. Besides aren5 we desperate enough?

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    • Ain’t that the diaby Wenger banked our whole season on? You know, the Diaby who hasn’t played a full season since that injury.

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    • I whole heartedly agree. Without injury upon injury he has the potential to be a top top player. We saw it at the beginning of the season, then France played him, too soon…. now he’s crocked again. We have nobody in midfield to take the ball, shimmy 2 players and then make a decent pass.

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  1. I feel Walcott wont play for Arsenal again. Thats so bad but that’s reality. I hope Diaby will be back, one day.
    I think we should sign croat Perisic from Dortmund for 7 mil euros.
    He’s unhappy at Dortmund but a great player. And he is not very expensive so it is realistic for Arsenal to buy him.

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  2. hard to describe how much it hurts to have someone who could be our best player and driving force destroyed by a couple of clumsy dangerous challenges. ;_;

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  3. Say what you want about it being a coincidence, but we’ve been inconsistent as fuck since Diaby walked off against chelski. I’m not suggesting it’s all because of that, but he clearly kept our midfield ticking early in the season, and we could use someone like him now. His habit of picking up injuries is really a shame. A truly skilled and talented player such as Diaby… I’m sure he’d give up all this money just to be fit for a full season ;[

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      • He’s been brilliant this season, but he does hold a lot of burden in anchoring the midfield at times, I think this sometimes effects his natural ability to, as you said, keep the game ticking. A top holding midfielder would be great, we can actually start to rotate especially with Rosicky back, United are always rotating and I think that keeps the hunger in the squad/midfield.

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      • Arteta’s role changed a bit with the Bilonging away of Song. Before it was a double pivot albeit we only saw Song provide these through passes but there was definite movement. Now therea no movement and its so easy too close down the midfield. Utd did it to us with Rooney the hair planter.

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    • i doubt it…..wenger has had 5 years to bring someone to replace diaby yet always said he will be back soon…..its clear diaby cant stay fit……..but wenger willl have to spend or he will get made to leave the club.

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  4. I feel sorry for Diaby but Wenger still has this belief he’ll be the Viera we’re looking for. In the words of Albert Einstein “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, expecting a different result”.
    We need a suitable replacement and keep Diaby as a squad player or cut our losses with him completely, sad but true.

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  5. Face it Walcott is going…going and al but gone and Wenger will be mental if he doesn’t try to get something for him in January.

    Diaby is simply a waste of a quarter of a million pounds a month. But how much easier is it whine about Man City and Chelsea having so much more than us, than actually address the way we use our own resources ?

    Anyone would think the latter really is something to do with Wenger.

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    • They said the same about Van Persie being too injury prone… Just look at last year. That alone is worth keeping a player as masterful as Diaby. When fit, Abou is just as good as Yaya.

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      • Yes, his talent is inversely proportional to the time he’s spent out injured.

        While it’s true that VP eventually came good, he also skipped off at the first chance, maybe we’d have been better off replacing him years ago instead of being a springboard for his ambitions.

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      • As good as Yaya? Steady.

        Tere is some major revisionist history going on here. Diaby has been a liability for 3/4 years now? We continue to persist with him. With the current state of affairs we simply cannot keep him, in case he does come good, at the expense of bringing in someone to do the job now. Also, he’s not as good as everyone is making out, always flatters to deceive then gets injured. Sad but true.

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      • No sorry, van persie’s injury record isn’t as bad as Diaby’s by a long way. It’s been exaggerated since he left to help the ‘he owed us for sticking by him through his injuries’ argument. RVP averaged 26 starts per season since joining in 2004 (when he wasn’t first choice of course). Diaby averages on my calculation about 16 appearances (not starts) per season. Much as we dislike RVP now it’s unfortunately the truth. RVP also had a full season and a half playing every week pretty much – something Diaby has never managed.

        I feel so sorry for him and when fit he is phenomenal. But its time to cut our losses and bring in someone we can rely on to actually play.

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  6. diaby is such a huge potentially……arguably one of the best around…..so bad it has gone wrong for him…..really feel for the lad

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  7. I’m sorry, but it’s high time arsene stopped relying on diaby’s fitness. He’s supremely talented, yes. But is too injury prone, and that situation doesn’t look like it’s ever going to change. It is time to profit now, while his reputation as a player is still good, and sell him abroad to a less physical league. And re-invest (Though i know that won’t happen).
    January is the most important transfer window in a long long time, and reinforcements are urgently required.

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    • I’m all for getting competition for Diaby, but selling him? Come on. He’s 26. Give him a chance, he’s worth it.

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      • Really? Who disagreed? Diaby being injured this much is plenty worth getting a season or two like Van Persie has for us last season and the one before. The only difference is that Diaby will not just piss off like Van Persie. Diaby is worth it. He is the real deal, just very unlucky.

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      • He is structurally unable to stay fit for any sustained period – this has been true for at least 3 years. His situation is completely different from Van Persie’s, who regularly picked up contact injuries.

        It’s sad, but he’s broken. Hopefully we’ll get 15 games a season out of him for the rest of his contract (because nobody else will take him).

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      • Doubt we’d get much for him in his present condition anyway. Selling him to a French team might actually work out in his favor. Look, the guy gets injured and stays injured for long periods without any contact. Can you imagine what happens when English defenders really get a chance to go at him?
        As much as I like the guy I think this club has to start being a little more ruthless. I’m not saying we need to copy Chelski or Man City but where has coddling these players gotten us?

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      • Anotherrhing is that vp and diaby injuries are different. Diabys injuries usuallu have to do with the muscle. Which means hes not fit enpugh to run 90 mins

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    • His reputation as a player will never be bad, hes too good for that to happen. However, his reputation for injuries are already really bad.
      When his contract is up, i hope we keep him on a pay as you play contract.

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      • But there’s the problem. He still takes a slot in the team, so with pay for play he might be cheap, but at a cost to the team.

        I hope he comes good, but if he can’t we should cut him from the squad til the summer and buy in somebody combative even if for the short term. Then we can review the situation again in June.

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    • Nothing gets sold until a willing buyer comes along.
      Who will buy Diaby? A medical school?
      No football manager worth tuppence will take a chance on him.
      I wish I could see him at his best again.

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  8. Really no point in playing theo from now on, it’s clear he’s going so we need to work on a shape that won’t include him.
    What a fucking shambles I feel for diaby and the worst thing is we have seen how good we are when we had that sort of player. But he was an injury waiting to happen As most of us knew apart it seems from arsene.

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  9. walcott wont play again so as not to get injured for the transfer window. So thats that.
    Thanks for your effort theo, sorry it didnt work out, good luck! Abou, i suppose we will never know how great you could of been, sorry to see. But i think the club needs to come first, and we should cut our losses and replace like Theo. Good luck to abou i hope it doesnt turn out to be another Hargreaves career. So thats a CM, RW/LW for certain plus hopefully a ST and LB. As much as i hope this will all happen can anyone else see our busiest, and most productive transfer window coming or are you a bit negative like me?

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    • Bottom line is Ross, arsene said he the cash for two players in the window, do people really think that all our trouble can be solved with two players?
      Theo’s going, Diabys perma injured, Chamakh is probably going or if not is next to useless as is Gervinho. Arshavin looks like he’s going and again if not arsene won’t pick him anyway for some reason.
      That’s without the players that are in the team and don’t look interested like podolski.
      It needs a complete overhaul And I just don’t see arsene or the board have the appetite for that, something is wrong at the club when we have so many decent players under performing week in week out and adding maybe one or two more average players to the mix whilst losing probably another 2 or 3 just can’t see it making a huge difference.
      It wasn’t about losing at Bradford that was worrying that can happen to any club and has in the past, the worrying thing was not shot in target until the 70 minute and its been the lack of chances up front most of the season that is going to kill us.
      And our answer is to play Gervinho at center forward and leave Ramsey to get slaughtered on the wing when the poor kid is already suffering from confidence issues. Frightening stuff it really is..

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      • Two players has to mean a (large) defensive midfielder and a striker. I love Arteta and he’s great but it’s not his best position. And the need for a backup striker is too obvious to explain.

        Whether that is enough, time will tell. Although it feels like it is all doom and gloom, we could find on Monday night that we’re in fourth place, 2 points adrift of Chelsea in third. It papers over the cracks to some extent and the team has been unbelievably frustrating and disappointing this year but it could be much, much worse.

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      • I’d say that we should put Podolski in the middle when Giroud isn’t playing (or maybe even when he is) and get in a decent specialist winger instead of a striker.

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    • It’s a nasty problem apparently.
      He’s got a gaping hole in his wallet and his head’s stuck up his arse. A clear case of incurable agentitis.

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  10. Those in authority at Arsenal are making the job for Wenger more difficult.
    How can a club like Arsenal continue to destroy the team and expect those who have Arsenal at hurt to continue supporting those who destroy the club.

    There is a hidden agenda, but the agenda is about to explode. Since Kronke took over at Arsenal, they are busy selling players and are not replacing them.
    If Stan was after money, then he should not be into football. If he wants to be in football, then he should do the right thing. There is something wrong at Arsenal that is the reason why all players are leaving the club.

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    • Maybe the conspiracy theory is true?
      Stan is only in it for the money, hence the board only wants us to finish third or fourth place in the league. Then we “almost” grabbed the first place and don´t need to add more players, in fact we can actually afford to sell one or two (profit!!).

      Winning the league means higher demand for the next year = investments = loss of profit!

      Barely qualifying for the CL is perfect when you think about it, we make a shit ton of money and we can demand our sponsors to up their bid, but we never have to strengthen the team. Win – win, except for the supporters, but who cares, right?

      A gloomy period as an Arsenal supporter, but hey, we have something to bitch about!

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    • Yes – Ideally we’d have both these 2 in the squad to do that enforcer-ish job. Song and Arteta worked incredibly well last season and I can’t understand why we let Alex go. I said at the time that it bothered me more that we let Song go than the fact that we let RVP go, and despite RVP’s great form for Utd this year, I stand by that. When we have balance and energy in our midfield, we can match anyone, but when we don’t, we’re a pretty poor side most of the time, it seems.

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      • We let song go because wenger was thinking that finally diaby’s injury nightmare s are over and that he can play all season long.shame

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  11. Come back soon Kos.
    Koscielny and Mertesacker are our best defenders. That man who wears the armband is a joke.
    All our ex-captain’s stomach’s must have been churning.
    Except for Cunny Van Pursie. He was probably laughing.

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  12. Diaby! *looking towards the sky and cries*

    He has been my favourite player for a long time, love to see his elk steps (swedish expression) as he crashes through opponents down the middle. What a player he could have been if it weren´t for that cunt who killed his ankle. Yaya who?

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  13. I think our problem isnt in the midfield positions but actually in the striker and wide men area. Wenger plays ramsey in a wide position wich he cant play no speed no dribling skills and gervinio has no clever movments . Giroud is o.k but not tecnical at all and thats the diffrence from the past years were missing fast tecnical forwards that switch places and have clever movments , andvthats why our midfield struggles their stuck with the ball and no one to pass to. Sorry for my spelling

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  14. Too bad for Abou, we started well with him this season.
    What was this last injury, I honestly don’t know. Was it a knock or something?

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  15. A fit (joke) Diaby changes the dynamics of our team immensely. I just wish we could get more than a few weeks out of him.
    I think this will be his last season in the red and white.

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  16. We should not talk of Diaby anymore, beginning of the season, we thought the man is now back forever and after few games, he was back on injury again. Arsenal need good left back, one good mifielder who can play the Song way or Fabrigas way and lastly they should sign top class goal scorer. If they buy good three players, you will see a big change beleive me.

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  17. Ha, this crap about Diaby makes me laugh.

    A few seasons ago when he had a run of games EVERYBODY was moaning about how he slowed the game down all the time and held onto the ball too long, now he’s supposed to be the missing link!

    It’s typical of the excuse culture and totally clueless tactical brain of the average Wenger supporter. Whenever a player is injured, they’re the reason we lost.

    The problem is Wenger, shame he can’t get injured.

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    • so true, most of the people on here comparing him to Yaya probably never saw him play before. I think he had the potential to be as good as Yaya, but his stats show he turned the ball over far to often and was a bit inconsistent. If fit he would be a great asset, but every injured player turns into some kind of superhero. Just look at the year Vermaelen was out injured, you would think he would have come back to establish himself as the best CB in the league…

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    • It’s true, frankly. Not so long ago it was agreed that Diaby had about 1 good game in 3 – and that was when he was fit. Suddenly he’s one of the best around because he looked decent in the 5 minutes he played this season.

      Diaby isn’t the answer, never was, probably never will be. Good player, never world class. It’s a complete fiction based on the fact that fans need something to cling to.

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      • True. Inconsistent plauer yes. But hes the only one who can play thay role well enugh except for arteta who is now a holding mid.

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  18. no doubt we need a diaby-like midfielder, however, one from another league won’t cut it. prior prem experience is a must as this season is far from over. having said that no player really jumps out, cabaye may work

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  19. Does anyone know the number of games we have won this year with Walcott in the team compared to not. Can’t help but think that his forward momentum and willingness to have a crack will be sorely missed if he goes in January. Will be worth keeping him the latter part of the season with whatever signings are made to create and score goals whatever the lost sale revenue.

    The Walcott – Sagna right hand side works so well when they are both fit.

    PS the cretins who sit behind me at the Emirates hate both of them and wish them illness and injury every time they play to the extent that I am looking to move seats next year. You know who you are cretins!

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    • Of his 10 goals this season, 5 were in the League Cup, the other 5 were:

      The sixth goal against Southhampton
      The fifth goal against Spurs
      The second goal against West Ham, in my opinion a good quality and important goal
      And lucky stumble goals against Schalke away, following up on Giroud, and at Everton.

      Quality defending renders him ineffectual and clueless, a typical example being the Swansea game.

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      • Golden goose- not at all. Any competent right sided player would have delivered those assists and more as they would have stayed right instead of drifting inside in the deluded belief that they were a central striker. As much as it pains me to admit, Chris Waddle understated it when he described Walcott as not a footballer but a sprinter in football boots.

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  20. Arsenal should forget about Diame just because he is affordable means we must sign him. Just another average player playing in a team well suited for him in west ham what we need is to sign one of the three Strootman,Capoue and Benat and we are good to go in the DM.

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  21. When Diaby was injured (this time), Arsenal was only 1-1-3 in the Premier League, having drawn against Sunderland and Stoke. I’m not sure how halcyon were those days when he was at full fitness.

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    • What a great argument that is…. for City or Chelsea to sign him. They have lots of money to rub players off with.

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  22. “It doesn’t sound positive for Diaby but it’s fair to say he won’t be playing for us again”. There you go, I fixed it. Now I like Diaby as a player and if things had been different, he may well have been the driving force we’ve missed. Unfortunately, I can’t see his career in general recovering from this injury and it may be time to retire. Maybe become a physio…..

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  23. We need to get rid of diaby and bring someone in. He’s a good player but I cant forgive back heeling the ball in our box to an opposition player…. When he’s actually playing that is. We need to boost out wings not our midfield

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  24. At first glance, I read the headline as “Wenger gives up on Giroud, Koscielny, Walcott and Diaby.” It seemed a bit harsh on Giroud, but it did get my hopes up that the end of the tunnel was nigh.

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  25. Hi there
    Just been sent link to brilliant article on Wenger in (I ‘m not kidding) an Accountancy website …
    “Wenger a great bookkeeper – but a bad CEO”
    Basically says despite being an Economics graduate – his commercial decision making has lead to Arsenal suffering financially. We all know about the footie bit…
    So the games up for Wenger – the Accountants are against him!!!

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    • The article is not brilliant, and pivots on the truth one assumption. It implicitly accepts that if Arsenal signs Walcott for a multi-year deal worth $100k per week then there will still be a team willing to give him an equivalent (or more) deal plus pay £20 million on top of wages to prize him away from Arsenal in the summer. If not, then Arsenal will be saddled with (yet another) player on wages that (in Arsenal’s estimation) overvalue his contribution to the team.

      The accuracy of the assumption is certainly up for debate, but that “accountant” website has no credibility on this subject.

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  26. i think it should be clear that if diaby gets back playing it is imperative he’s treated with kid gloves,deschamp told to forget about him until the season is over(at least) and that he is only played in league games,no way can he handle 2 games a week.This team only works with him in midfield,and that gamble has been Wengers misfortune this season-diaby makes everyone else better,and on his day still the best midfielder at the club,and the physical presence we’ve lacked since veira.

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  27. If Diaby is serious about getting healthy and playing for us then I think a good start would be for him to officially retire from International football.

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  28. As I scan this thread, I’m getting tired of seeing posts that ask why we let _______(Song, RVP, etc.) go. These players left because they wanted out. RVP wanted trophies and Song wanted more money as well as a ticket to Barcelona. One may (and should) rightly ask why Wenger did not move more aggressively for a defensive midfielder when Song left — did he really think that Coquelin/Arteta/Diaby could fill that role? — but to suggest that Wenger let Song go is slightly silly.

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    • Risking the thumbs down I will point out that. . . As for rvp aw miscalculated simple as that. But for Song there AW is at fault. The papers tell us that Song was one of the lower paid ones and he wanted that fixed but he didnt get it because there were 3 years left. I think its reasonable that someone who shouldered a large portion of the creativity should get a pay raise. Song was basically made by Wenger with the right words I reckon his trophy wants could have been sated.

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  29. Contract or No Contract it would be madness to leave Theo out at the expense of Gervinho, Ramsey or Oxlade-Chamberlain (Who is good but is better coming off the line and linking into Midfield). He has a good understanding with Giroud, and seems to also be the only one who provides decent crosses for him, and gives him more space to play in by pushing defenses back with his pace. Plus he’s back at the Madjeski and remember what happened last time he played there? Play Theo if he’s fit and rip Reading to shreds. Ox/Santi/Theo/Giroud would be my front 4.

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  30. I like Diaby, when he is playing well (and obviously not injured), but when he has played over the past 5 or 6 seasons, he has been terribly inconsistent, Scored a few great goals, scored a howler of an own goal against Manure, of all teams, but 4 or 5 outstanding memories makes me doubt whether he was ever any good, Absence makes the heart grow fonder!

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  31. People say season went down hill a after diaby got injured , I disagree bar jack wilshire who on the playing staff love the club ??????? U know arteta is a toffee deep down and cazorla just waiting to get back to Malaga , podolski would never of left if cologne stayed in bundesleague “show us ur cologne tattoo ” vermalen is buckling under the pressure of the armband and mertesaker is playing and looking like shaggy from scooby doo and don’t get me even started on gervinho he can’t even stand up and what the fucks he doing in the premier league and as a main striker stay in Africa after the nations cup !! Any signing this winter would be welcome but one I would like would be pat rice back !!!!!!!!

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  32. I read a Vertongen interview where he said he didn’t sign for us because wenger wanted to play him as a DM and it seemed he was saying he didn’t want to compete for that spot with the midfield options we have.
    Makes you wonder whether it’s crossed his mind to try Vermalean there – it might mean that his runs up the park don’t leave us as exposed at back (and we could use our two best defenders-mert & kos) and also moved the extra fouls that he sometimes gives up the park further.

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    • You know that foray would leave us just as exposed because there would be a gaping space for opposing players to 3xploit in front of the defence. God typos I hate my mobile. Anyway, bad idea. Its how Liverpool lost to us.

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