Boss bemoans lack of striking talent

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Arsene Wenger has once again expressed his desire to spend money on the right player, but bemoaned the lack of top class strikers in this summer’s transfer market.

It’s not simply a case of availability, there’s a shortage of high level striking talent throughout the European game. The big clubs have the big strikers and they won’t be letting them go, while there are few outstanding candidates coming through the next generation.

It’s a concern for the manager as he looks to spend the money he’s got available to him this summer.

“There’s a shortage [of top class strikers] in the world,” he told Standard Sport. “It confirms that there’s a difference between financial power nowadays and the availability of top-class players.

“It is simple. For any deal, when you want to buy something you go to see the owner and if he doesn’t want to sell, he doesn’t want to sell. You cannot buy.

“In our job it is exactly like that. When the players are not free you cannot buy them because it’s the club who decides, the person who owns the contract who decides.

“In Europe you have maybe 15 clubs with a huge financial resource. It is hard, believe me, to get a deal over the line.”

The difficulty of finding the right player, both in terms of talent and availability, is why the Frenchman is looking for improvement from what he’s already got.

While not ruling out more purchases, he said, “I’m always more focused on developing the team, the players we have and getting everyone on board that we have at the club.

“We want to develop players as well rather than overthinking whether to buy. I’m not against buying when it is a plus for your team.

“If it’s just to buy a player at the level of the players that you have to make people happy, I’m not ready for that.

“If it’s somebody who brings something that you don’t already have in the squad, then of course you want to do that.”

Listen to Philippe Auclair update the Karim Benzema situation on today’s Arsecast.

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Getso gunner

All the top strikers are not available but hopefully we can grab one

Eduardo Stark

can’t get over that Michael Owen stuff earlier, can you? heh.

pi

I’d cry if we signed Reus

then shit and cry again
then fap
and shit and cry again

Cyril Washbrook

Ever seen him play? He’s not a striker.

But hey, if you are convinced that Alexis is rubbish and needs replacing quick smart, then by all means hold onto your fantasy of signing Reus.

like a red head Ljungberg

i too beleive olie giroud is more than capable as a centre forward, but as you see we have a midfield of playmakers, and again its obvious to us all that giroud too (as an striker) is more of a playmaker type, his strengths are in areas such as holding up defenders, link up play, short passing rather than goal scoring or ruthlessness, while that could be also useful as a plan for any top club (he does what he’s good at almost unique and flawless) but then again with a midfield that most of them either lack shooting ability… Read more »

David C

this idea that no strikers are available is an interesting one.

It certainly doesn’t apply to a team like Athletico Madrid. They sell one and replace them with equal or better every time. Vieri, Torres, Forlan, Aguero, Falcao (in his prime), Costa, Mandzukic, Greisman (a winger, but still).

Maybe we should just buy some of the Ath. Madrid scouts!

Andy Mack

Although I ‘Kinda’ agree with you, there’s a number of issues with the names you mentioned. Some wouldn’t suit us, some wouldn’t suit the PL and a couple of them I don’t rate at all (Forlan and Mandzukic), plus being in spain they have much less issues with work permits and joint ownership of players. But yes they’ve had some really good ones and they certainly do have the knack.

Goone's Farm

You don’t rate Mandzukic, the man who lead the line for Bayern the year they won the treble. But you don’t rate him so, I guess he’s no good right…

Crash Fistfight

Djimi Traore won the Champions League. #justsaying

Trez

Did djimi score 22 in 40 games for Liverpool that season?

Andy Mack

Bayern is my second team (I lived there for a few years) and we (as Bayern ‘fans’) were pleased when he left. He scored goals but his team play was really poor.

chippy's chip

No strikers blah blah. Who has been sending them all on loan?? Why not give akpom/afobe/sanogo a run of games even if they dont perform well straight away. AS you are doing with cech?? How many more mistakes before he is dropped?

Andy Mack

The main problem with most youngsters is that they’re inconsistent. A good game (or 2) then a bad game. As soon as they had the bad game he’d be slaughtered by the moaners and the press for playing them (I assume you’re aware that Afobe is now owned by wolves).

chippy's chip

A bit like giroud then?

Riz

Yep but he’s handsome.

Andy Mack

HFB always contributes to the team even when he forgets his scoring boots.

chippy's chip

Hmmm….and the job of a striker is…

Andy Mack

That’s the main job, yes. But not the only job and that’s why he’s a better option on his bad days that a youngster on their bad days.
I should add that I really think we should have kept Akpom and brought him on from the bench whenever possible but like Sanogo, they’re only starters in the main/big games when we don’t have any other option and need a target rather than a speedster as CF.

chippy's chip

Disagree about giroud. Agree about akpom. Knew about afobe. You are obviosly married like me and never usually get the last word in ??

GunnAlex

Why weren’t we in for Costa?

Don’t get me wrong, after seeing what a twat he is, I’m glad we didn’t.

Just saying it’s an example of a top player being available, and we didn’t even have a sniff.
I don’t know if it’s a bad policy to go in for players you know other clubs are interested in, at least then it would have made Chelsea take a bigger sting to their ffp adherence.

Man Manny

That’s rather very rhetorical in my opinion.

GunnAlex

I suppose I dont know the answer myself, and offered up my best stab at it. Its not often we seem to be intrested in a player that another team perhaps might be. Alhough I do recall losing out on Hazard and Mata with a wimper.

Gus Caesar

Wimper = gazumped by a club with a bottomless wallet.

indrossi

Because Arsenal FC is a “cunt-free zone” since Skunkface, “New Zidane” and What Was That Catalan Boy Called? decided the grass was greener.

To a man, we’re packed with nice guys, handsome bastards, friendly chaps and well-spoken fellows. I wouldn’t have Costa for the same reason I wouldn’t have taken Suarez. He’s a cunt.

Rossi88

Tbh he might be a cunt. But we as a club have had our fair share of players making mistakes in their personal and proffesional lives. Its human to make mistakes. Perhaps biting 3 times is a bit different lol, but my point is no one is perfect. If we had the slimmest chamce of signing Suarez tommorow. Id personally bite their arms off…(pun intended) Difference between winning and losing titles. 25goals at least guaranteed.

neutral

Wenger would have taken Saurez, and so would I. Brilliant player. The myth that Arsenal only buys good guys flys in the face of all the fuckwits who stabbed us in the back. Do yourself a favour and try not to believe in fantasies.

Ces1ne

When those boyband wannabes you mentioned win something important we can factor in players “looks”….what a joke you are as a person if that’s how you actually think

Gudang Pelor

IMHO, we need some thugs and ugly bastards to start winning the big ones again. Remember Vieira, Jens, Keown? They were kind of ugly bastards in their own rights, but they were our bastards.

Andy Mack

Different game now, much faster and much more difficult when you’ve only got 10 players on the pitch. Most of the refs get a hard-on at the thought of sending off an arsenal player.

Gus Caesar

The reason we didn’t was because we only had a certain amount of money when he was available and decided it was better spent elsewhere e.g. Alexis. You could make an argument as to why we didn’t buy any player but there are always circumstances.

KillaB

You mean level-headed, patient Arsene with temperamental and sinister enough for Chelsea Costa??

Feel it’s a similar auto Arsene not wanting Balotelli

Ces1ne

For “level-head” see old & delusional
For “patient” see stubborn even tho he has failed

JakeyBoy

We couldn’t have driven the price up and hurt them FFP-wise beyond the approximate £32m they paid because Costa had a release clause which was activated.

Merlin's Panini

I think you answered your own question really. He’s a twat. It seems our new policy is to not buy twats. We haven’t had one since RVP, and before him they all left – Adebayor, Nasri, Gallas etc.

Ajinkya

RVP wasn’t a twat when he was playing and scoring for us. He became one, and a huge one at that, when we ditched us. It will only take ‘flattering’ links with teams like Barca and Madrid to find which player plans to leave us. Players like Suarez and Costa would have improved this team. Period.

assistantref

No, he was always a twat.

And I don’t know why you’re whining about Suarez. We activated his release clause, Liverpool ignored the contract and got away with it by promising a bunch of $$$ and that they’d let him go the next year when one of the Spanish giants came calling.

We were in for Suarez, and I dunno what you can blame us for on that front.

Ajinkya

There was never a release clause for Suarez. We bundled that up. If I remember correctly, 40 million was just a figure for initiation of talks. And we added one pound more thinking it was the release clause. We should have made a more serious offer. And are you saying you thought RVP was a twat even before he skunked us?? You’ve got to be kidding me.

Andy Mack

Ajinya, The Liverpool boss admitted that there was a release clause. In a meeting of fenway, he (tom whatshisname) boasted that he’s lied about it.

Goontang

Probably because hes really about 38 years old. And we all know wengers policy on seasoned players…

But in all seriousness, fuck costa.

Ces1ne

His EPL title says different unfortunately……

Andy Mack

Because his manager is a shyster that AFC don’t have any relationship with whilst he’s also a big buddy of the ‘spendy one’.
There’s politics in every business.

Nacho Cheese Kalevra

We didn’t because of the Jorge mendes cartel. And the fact that Jose is also Portuguese.

chippy's chip

Costas just a shit eduardo

Trez

Explains why Martial is been quoted for 39m…insane!!
I wonder why no one bothered to activate Griezmann buy out clause at 42m?? if sterling is worth 49m, that would’ve been a bargain

Andy Mack

If Sterling is worth 49m, I’m worth at least 4.9m.

Ces1ne

HA! You’re not even worth the device you type your delusional comments on bruh!!!!!

Trez

Hahaha don’t undervalue yourself, if sterling is worth 49m, you’re worth 28m(not forgetting the English premium).

Andy Mack

I would be worth that at a similar age but at over double his age 28m is even less realistic than 49m.

Quick

I bet Wenger has something up his sleeve here.

A striker, I mean, not just his arm.

Merlin's Panini

He also keeps a tissue there sometimes, or so I’ve heard.

Scott P

Every newspaper: “Breaking News: Arsene’s Coat Mystery SOLVED”

like a red head Ljungberg

everyone who’s talking about goal scoring, offensive statics, scored goals, player quality, the world class striker and cohesion, seems to me, is missing the point, the real problem that hides behind the statics and all the analyses, i too beleive olie giroud is more than capable as a centre forward, but as you see we have a midfield of playmakers, and again its obvious to us all that giroud too (as an striker) is more of a playmaker type, his strengths are in areas such as holding up defenders, link up play, short passing rather than goal scoring or ruthlessness,… Read more »

UlsterGooner

I tried reading that, but I ran out of breath.

Merlin's Panini

longest sentence ever.

Gary

It’s thought we have (at least!!) £60m in the bank. That’s approx €83 euros. That gets you a top class striker….. The trouble is that Arsene’s estimation of players is in my opinion, unrealistic. He wants bargains. So we only buy players when a particular set of circumstances come together and makes people like Ozil and Sanchez available for £40m or so. At some point if we want a world, top class striker, we will have to pay the going rate. Forget Benzema’s goals, in the last 6 years he has 45 assists, 1 behind Xavi and 4 AHEAD of… Read more »

antony

How do you KNOW benzema is available. You’re saying a very complex scenario is simple but it’s NOT.

Why would Real sell their first team striker? Who are they going to replace him with? As you said, 45 assists etc. Are they in need of cash? No.

This article is all about how just having cash doesn’t mean you get who you want. I am quite convinced that Arsenal / Wenger wants Benzema. The point he’s making though, is wanting someone and having the cash doesn’t mean you get the player.

The Blerch

But the point is Benzema probably isn’t available- the article and every other article in every other paper this summer has made the point that you can’t just buy someone if the other club doesn’t want to sell. Some clubs (like RM in this case) can afford to stockpile talent and only sell when they need to raise cash fast

King Henry

They are not available

SB

Was RVP available, Cesc, Nasri…? So, we were looking to sell them?!

If the owners didn’t want to sell, you can’t buy!! Sounds double standards to me.

vnet

We were not looking to sell them. The fact is that we were not as much a financial power as we are now. That made the bids for RVP,Nasri and Cesc impossible to turn down from a pure business sense. Today, what Arsenal can do is only react to the Big Clubs Transfers(Bale got us Ozil, Suarez got us Sanchez). Maybe DiMaria will get us Cavani (if Wenger fancies him). This is where Arsenal are at the moment. We still cannot bully the Biggest Boys (Real, Barca Munich) into selling us their superstars if they don’t want to. Today we… Read more »

Goone's Farm

I don’t think the bids were particularly high and irresistible, it’s just that those three players you named WANTED the switch, each for his reasons and they pushed for a move away from the club.

John C

They left because they were constantly lied to by the manager who said we’d sign world class players but ended up with Hleb and Gervinho!

Gar14

Because we dont pay over the odds for players.

Hurensohn

He’s a really good player, don’t get me wrong, worth a good £30-35m but Benzema is not €83m better than Giroud. He’s not even €23m better than Giroud and that’s what matters, we can only play one of them at any given time unless we drastically change something… He’s one of the most overrated players in the game, still a really good player but he really isn’t ‘world class’. We have to hope Giroud can keep up his goals to game ratio from last season and if he goes through a dry spell, maybe Theo can step up. There will… Read more »

Trez

Benz is FAR better than Giroud…lets not lie to ourselves. He’s rather underrated because he has to share the limelight with bale and of course cr7.

Gus Caesar

In your opinion maybe. I think he’s better but not massively so, it’s why Giroud has often kept Benzema out of the French team.

Ces1ne

Don’t be delusional dude……Giroud NEVER kept him outta the French team, it’s literally a fact that can be looked up but it doesn’t suit your pro-wenger agenda

Trez

Giroud has never kept Benz out of the French team…I don’t know where that myth came from because I seem to remember Benzema being the main man at the world cup.
Maybe you’re taking him been shifted to the wing(due to his versatility) or playing together in a 4-4-2 as “keeping him out of the team”.

Gus Caesar

I think if you check the French team over recent years there are many times when Giroud started instead of Benzema.

SB

Didn’t Wenger want to buy Draxler and convert him into a striker?

Seems to be available!

Abba

If going by the market rate means paying the kind of players like sterling and carrol ridiculous money then that’s not Arsenal and glad they don’t do it.
If you really see the way the club is moving forward, unlike how RVP imagined it, the club is on the right track and soon Arsenal will be up their. Problem is now all are very impatient and wants success quickly.

John C

Totally agree, when I hear Wenger talk about “no value in the market”, what I really hear is that there’s no undervalued players available, like Ozil and Sanchez. If Arsenal really want to compete they have to accept that they’re going to have to overpay every now and again for the players that will improve the team. It stands to reason that teams aren’t going to let there best players go cheaply, we just need to accept it. Quality, not price should be the determining factor unless looney prices are quoted but even then that shouldn’t be completely written off.… Read more »

SB

I agree with every point you made except the examples!

John C

Haha well you might not rate them but you can’t take away their 5/6/7? premier league winners medals or their champions league winners medals, or various other medals they’ve won over the last decade or so with utd

Hurensohn

What about Veron? Di Maria Falcao? For every big money success there is a failure. For every Hazard, there is a Torres. We don’t have loopy money to throw around so we can only buy the players we KNOW will workout rather than taking gambles because we can afford to.

John C

Torres has a Champions league winners medal with Chelsea, Veron has league title winners medals with Utd and Chelsea. Please name the players who have won either with Arsenal over the last 10 years?

Gus Caesar

Yes because we all know that medals are the best indicator of the quality of a player. That’s why Phil Neville was the greatest full-back of his generation…

John C

They’re the best indicator of the quality of a team and that’s exactly why our best players over the past decade or so, starting with Vieira and Henry through to Fabregas, and Van Persie have left!

Gus Caesar

???

John C

Don’t you understand?

Football is a team game and players are components of the team, so Veron or Torres were relatively bad purchases in winning teams, so who cares that the perception is that weren’t the best value?

And what represents value in the first place?

I hope the aim of Arsenal Football club is to win the League and Champions league not to get the best value from the transfer market.

Gus Caesar

I don’t understand the relevance of what you’re saying to the above article or the point made by Hurensohn above. I also don’t think you know what you’re talking about.

Andy Mack

OK, so you’ve changed from buying players to who’s the best team.
Torres was always a passenger at the chavs and pointing out his CL Medal shows you’re taking the p155!

John C

Hurensohn called those players failures in response to my comment, so I was pointing out that they were successful failures and none of our transfer successes in the last ten years can replicate their success. I’d love Arsenal’s transfer failures to help us win the league or Champions league as our transfer successes haven’t been able to recently. So in summary, I don’t think that Chelsea or United fan’s give a shit if Torres or Veron represented good value when they were winning those trophies because they are Chelsea and United fan’s not Torres or Veron fan’s. United fan’s aren’t… Read more »

Andy Mack

Plenty of ‘fans’ at Chavski think Torres was a waste of space (they called him a Stamford bridge oxygen thief) and the fact he won a medal with them is only relevant to Torres himself. They don’t consider him as having contributed anything worthwhile to the CL win that any other striker in the lower half of the table couldn’t have done for a tiny proportion of his cost. Teams make mistakes in their transfers but success stops the media from shouting about it. We want success but we don’t want big transfer failures. We’re only recently moving back into… Read more »

John C

Plenty of Chelsea fans might think Torres was a waste of space but that didn’t stop them celebrating the win he was part of whether you like it or not. It’s not a popularity contest to see how many rival fans agree with your transfer dealings but a contest to see who wins the biggest prizes! I support Arsenal and I want them to win trophies not have the best value team. I derive no pleasure watching the most financially sensible team ever assemble losing to West Ham at home on the first day of the season! Arsene Wenger appears… Read more »

Gabe

We only buy players we know will improve us? I laugh in Latin. Whatever happened to park, chamakh, bendtner, Santos, just to name a few. Let us be absolutely truthful to ourselves, do we think we can honestly win the league with this current setup? On paper, other top teams have a better setup and I personally think all our players will have to be in blistering, consistent form for most part of the season for us to usurp the title. Well I think we can find a striker if we really really want to, Wenger just doesn’t want to… Read more »

John C

Absolutely!

Wenger’s on a one man mission never to over pay for a player and unfortunately it’s the team and the fan’s that suffer for his principles.

rohit

Well, respectfully disagree that Ozil was undervalued at 40m. Even Sanchez, in my opinion, wasn’t undervalued really. The ridiculous prices that City is paying for players is what is making you feel that. I mean Aguero cost them just around 35m 4 years back. And today they are paying 40-50m for almost tome dick and sterling.

Trez

He was undervalued considering the price Madrid paid for bale(and we all know Mesut was FAR more accomplished than bale was as at 2013.). I assure you if manure bought him for 42m, the media wouldn’t have been on his back that much.

Vonnie

I don’t think we’re in for Benzema, he’s a prat who just bought a diamond studded football, and doesn’t seem a very nice guy. I don’t think he’s get along very well with cohesion and team spirit, who I personally think are good signings. I think Arsene and the club are happy to let the journos carry on with the rumours while they do the real business (if there is any) under the radar. I think we may still get one good signing, and it’ll be a top class experienced guy. We’ve got a lot of very good young prospects… Read more »

Trez

So according to you, Benzema is not a nice guy because he bought a diamond studded football(something which he can AFFORD to spend his money on)?
Then we might as well say santi isn’t a nice guy because he drives a Ferrari(or is it a lambo) or Giroud is a cunt for having that girl in his hotel room.

JJ's Bender

You need to relax mate, its Friday!

Trez

Looool i’m not tense…just saying he’s logic is very flawed.

Andy Mack

Congratulations Gary, you’re one of the very very few that thinks Ozil was a bargain at 42m.
That’s you, me and AW.

Gus Caesar

And me! I’d have paid double what we did. Genius.

Mpls

Does Benzema want to leave RM?
Last I heard the player has some say as well, until the end of their contract.

Perhaps he and Oli don’t want to duke it out for both Club and Country, or perhaps the manager doesn’t want that. A lot of unknown stuff here.

chippy's chip

£60m in the bank??? LOL!!! You better check that balance again. The bankers are saving for a rainy day.

Arsenalman29

Fuck, Benzema costs €83, il buy him for Arsenal, thats for nothing 😀 i am so excited 😀

two bullets in the chamber

I can’t believe that there is not one player available who is an upgrade on Flamini

Gus Caesar

As a 3rd choice DM I don’t think he’s that bad. I’d far prefer we were aiming to upgrade on Coquelin so that it would actually improve our first XI.

John C

It’s the same thing

Merlin's Panini

No it’s not.
You could try to sign someone with the aim to play as back up to Coquelin who is better than Flamini, back up to Coquelin but better than Arteta and Flamini, or to usurp all three. Therefore, no, it’s not the same.

Gus Caesar

You beat me to it!

John C

Only if you’re stupid

Gus Caesar

The stupid person is the one who wants an upgrade on only Flamini rather than trying to improve the first team.

John C

Exactly, but if an improvement on Coquelin can’t be found then the bare minimum should be to improve on Flamini, as he’s not good enough.

Gus Caesar

If you can find someone with the experience and versatility of Flamini who’s happy to be third choice then fine. I’d say it’s extremely doubtful that you can and anyway i’m sure that people would far prefer that we spent our money on improving the first team not the players who aren’t even on the bench. And if our squad is only as bad as our third choice DM then we’re in a very healthy position.

John C

The moment Arsene kept Arteta, Flamini, and Rosicky in this season squad I knew he wasn’t whole heartedly going for the title. All 3 should have been offloaded and replaced with players challenging to start, instead we’re left with clearly defined 2nd and 3rd choice players.

Why should Arsenal have anybody happy to be third choice and happy to pick up this pay cheque at the end of the week?

Gus Caesar

So you think we should sell up our squad before we know that we can sign better replacements? Very sensible.

As for Flamini being happy as third choice, have you asked him that? How do you know that he hasn’t asked for a transfer and isn’t trying to agree one?

Do you not see that the way to replace Flamini, Arteta or Rosicky is to find players who will improve upon the first XI and push Coquelin & co. down to the bench? That way you actually improve the performances on the pitch…

John C

We had an opportunity to get rid of 2 players who reached the end of their contracts at the end of last season in Arteta and Rosicky and who are old and have proved not good enough to help us win the league. So yes, in this instance you have to replace after releasing. Either Vidal or Schneirlin? (spelling) were available and both would have been vast improvements. The safety net of these players being still on the books doesn’t create any urgency to find improvements. I cannot speculate on Flamini’s happiness at being 3rd choice but what I can… Read more »

Stringer Bell

Are you John Terry in disguise

Gus Caesar

Or you could keep them and not get rid of experienced players that could help us when their experience is required. And maybe you could just sell them when we have replacements in place?

Schneiderlin was not and will never be worth £150k a week, i’m quite happy to pass on him. And you do know that Vidal is an attacking midfielder don’t you?

Your original point is that we’ve not upgraded on Flamini and that was and remains a silly point because that should not be and never will have been the target.

John C

Their experience at what exactly?! not winning? None of those players have been serial trophy winners and are not going to start now. As I said before their presence give the illusion of strength and slows the urgency to replace with better in my opinion. Schneiderlin is worth £150,000 a week if that’s what somebody is prepared to pay him and he is a definite improvement on Arteta or Flamini and probably Coquelin as well. In the next year or two with the new TV deal £150,000 a week will not be an extravagant wage any longer. I certainly did… Read more »

Gus Caesar

You do know that a player can bring experience to an on-pitch performance without having medals don’t you? By your logic we should only sign players who’ve won things previously in their career, which makes a mockery of your suggestion that we should have signed Schneiderlin. Schneiderlin is only worth it if he proves his value. I could pay £10 for a tin of baked beans, it doesn’t make it a good or value for money purchase just because I did. Personally i’m glad we run ourselves prudently and don’t overspend on fairly average players. Your point about ‘safety nets’… Read more »

John C

By your logic we should only sign players who’ve won titles before not mine, I merely asked what experience they brought to the team because winning isn’t it. I personally think £10 for baked beans is good value if baked beans is what you need to complete your meal. I certainly would add a can of peaches to my fry up just because they were cheaper and came in a can. That would just make me a cheapskate. I just don’t understand what the obsession with perceived value is about, Arsenal have the money. What are we keeping all this… Read more »

Gus Caesar

Not necessarily. You could find a DM that’s better than Flamini but no better than Coquelin and not improve the first XI. The key is not to find one who’s better than just Flamini but better than Flamini, Arteta and Coquelin…

- DFS

Sorry it’s hard to take anyone seriously if they casually write off Schneiderlin. Schneiderlin’s statistics speak for themselves – he is now one the best DM’s in the BPL and on the global stage. Further, for an extended period it was public knowledge he was interested to move to Arsenal and the club was interested in him. I have noted before, something went very wrong with any potential deal and it has been reported Schneiderlin’s party were dismissed out of hand. As it was early in the transfer window, the entire matter was glossed over. I did not understand this… Read more »

Mark

In the case of a DM, it can be the same as you already have. What if Coq gets injured or is banned for three games, making do is where we fall down. Three games can make a big difference in a season!

Crash Fistfight

I’ll probably get hate for this, but I wouldn’t have minded getting Nzonzi this summer as backup for Coq. He’s familiar with English football, is a fairly decent footballer and is low-profile enough that he might not have been upset about being on the bench (especially seeing as we could offer way more in wages than Sevilla). He only went for around £7m as well.

Andy Mack

Can you imagine the phone call between N’zonzi and AW; SN: Hi my agent says you’re interested in me. AW: Yes, we’d like you as one of our defensive midfield players SN; One of…… but if I joined you this weekend then I’d be a starter for you next weekend? AW; well Coquelin is the starter at the moment but you’d train to take his place when it becomes appropriate. SN; Thanks but No thanks…………… That’s the problem with pretty much any new player that you’re trying to buy as ‘Cover’. The Chavs are lucky that Obi Mikel has been… Read more »

Crash Fistfight

You make a fair point. However, without trying you’ll never know. Plus, he’s never going to get into the France squad so it’s not like he needs first team football, and most footballers are more bothered about their pay packet than playing in any case (no matter what romantic notions we have of them) – something I’m not bothered about as long as they’re professional.

Andy Mack

Older players want the cash and are less driven to play regularly in the hope their legs will last longer, but the younger ones really do want to play. It’s the only thing they’re good at.

Crash Fistfight

Nzonzi’s nearly 27 – not young for a footballer.

Don’t know what the down vote on your post was about btw – clearly it’s bad to have an opinion.

swissgunner

The likes of Martinez, Benteke and Lazarette have been available this summer. They all expressed repeatedly that they admire Arsenal – while we’re sitting on a pile of cash. So where’s the problem?

Getso gunner

All those three are not any better than Giroud

Trez

All 3 are better finishers than Giroud.

like a red head Ljungberg

wenger wants it hard to get? he doesn’t want it if anyone can have it

Hurensohn

He could have bought Falcao last season too… what a mistake that turned out to be.

Also, who the fuck is Lazarette?

Man Manny

Not even one of those guys is an upgrade on Giroud – a striker that people only care about highlighting his weaknesses. If Suarez scored the beauty he did last Sunday, the world of football would hear nothing else this week (except for City wiping the floor with Mourinho).

Gus Caesar

Doesn’t the fact that Lacazette hasn’t moved tell you something? Loads of clubs need a striker and yet he’s still in Ligue 1 suggests to me that there’s at least one reason why Wenger hasn’t moved for him.

Hurensohn

He’s also signed a contract extension too….

Gus Caesar

True, although all that does is increase his transfer fee. I think we can safely say that if Wenger hasn’t moved for him now then he doesn’t rate him as good enough right now.

Jimbo 1

There is a shortage of top strikers, so all the more reason to dig deep to get one. They probably should have offered a lot more for Suarez when they had the chance, who despite his biteyness, would have scored goals.

Hurensohn

Easy to say in hindsight but I bet you were one of those crying on when Manure bought Falcao last season too.

Gus Caesar

I don’t think it would’ve made any difference had we offered every penny we could afford for Suarez. We did bid £50m for him remember. I wish people would get over Suarez, we did pretty much everything we could to get him without taking it to the High Court.

meletios

no no..we did not bit £50 for him, its documented that Liverpool wanted 50 million not that we made an offer for the amount..

Gus Caesar

You’re actually incorrect, we made two bids – £40m+£1 and subsequently £50m. Both were rejected as Liverpool made clear that they weren’t selling him to us.

GoonerN16

But Suarez not only would have cost a bomb, but we couldn’t pay him his wage demands without upsetting the wage structure for the team. And we can’t afford to do that imo. So that also has to be considered together with cohesion and team spirit, our best recent signings.

Gus Caesar

To be fair, I suspect we would have agreed on his wages had we got him 2 years ago. Signing Ozil broke our wage structure and we were quite happy to do it. But I don’t honestly think that we’d have got Suarez without him agreeing to take Liverpool to Court over his contract.

Jimbo 1

He could have been bought for 60 million, which is looking pretty good value now. However, the point is not that we didn’t get Suarez, which is old history, but we just don’t offer the going rate for the top players.

Andy Mack

Suarez would have been telling us about his Barca DNA a year later, so the only thing we’d have ended up with was him for a year and possibly a bit more money when we sold him. If he’d wanted to come to us then he’d have put in a transfer request but he didn’t because he wanted his loyalty bonus more than he wanted to join us.

- DFS

Can we stop repeating Wengers silly paradigm? When was the era of a surplus of top class strikers? When was it any team had so many top class strikers they could not play them all? Did I miss this golden age? It’s an idiotic pardigm…let’s pretend there are now less strikers than there were before. As it is, I do not care about a striker as much as cover for Coquelin and find it infuriating that very good midfielders have been moving all window long as have very good strikers. Any great team is more the sum of it’s parts… Read more »

John C

Absolutely, it’s a smoke screen for his inaction. As you say there’s never been a surplus of top class strikers, just for the first time in 25 years we don’t have one and he isn’t prepared to pay the going rate to get one.

Wenger’s deflecting attention away from why he hasn’t strengthened the squad over the summer with nonsense, some people buy the bullshit, some of us don’t.

Ajinkya

Obviously there is a lack of strikers. All the other teams who are chasing a title have bought them. I can’t believe we are going into the new season having bought just Cech. Even if we do buy someone now, be ready for excuses like ‘settling in’ and ‘didn’t have a pre-season’, etc.

Andy Mack

You mean ‘settling in’ isn’t the reason that most transfers come good in their second season?

Ajinkya

No, what I meant was that we should try and finish our transfers earlier so that we get a good start and are not playing catch up throughout the season. And please don’t tell me there are no players available. Because I see teams all around buying and strengthening their teams.

Andy Mack

Your comment ‘didn’t have a pre-season’ I understand, but most transfers at every club in the PL have a quiet 1st season due to ‘settling in’. There are exceptions but most only show their worth in the 2nd season, which is why I don’t understand that comment from you.

gooner1981

Usually the transfer market for elite players really gets moving when the richest clubs like Madrid or Barca buy some shiny new player for stupid money. This year there are no big strikers that aren’t already at big/rich clubs (Cavani, Aguero, Lewandowski et al don’t seem likely to move), so it’ll be hard for them to make a galactico signing. If our so called ‘interest’ in Benzema really is genuine, it would still take Madrid to sign a ‘bigger’ player than Benzema… I honestly don’t see that happening- there *isn’t* a player bigger than Benzema that they could realistically sign… Read more »

Mootilated

It could work if they decide to purchase Marco Reus and play Cristiano Ronaldo or Gareth Bale as a lone striker up top. But we are so far into the window that I cannot see it happening and have a feeling we will go through the season (perhaps until January) with the squad we have now. It is difficult to retain a title without purchasing new and better players, let alone trying to win it with the same ones that got us third place.

Jimbo 1

So third place is in the bag then.

Trez

If we don’t add another goal scorer, yes that seems to be the case.

Mootilated

I am not saying that we are a bad squad by any means, but when you consider the quality of the teams around us, it is a stretch to think that we can gain more points over the entire season. We still have to prove to the League that we can perform consistently throughout the rest of the year and losing our first game against a team we should’ve beaten is already proof of the opposite. If we want to win the league, we cannot lose more than 3 or 4 more games. We also need to try get maximum… Read more »

Mootilated

Oh, and don’t tell me ‘but Chelsea won the league last season and have started terribly so whats your point?’. My point is that, even though that is true, it doesn’t excuse a poor start from us if we want to win the league. They didn’t win the league with average performances, they won it by consistency.

Ferngunner

Wenger likes a surprise much like with the Ozil and Sanchez transfers. The fact that we’re all going on about Benzema pisses him off. He will now go for Muller or Lewandowski.

Mootilated

Sanchez was no surprise. He was being linked with us while Chile were still in the World Cup…

Gus Caesar

And there’s more chance of him trying to sign me than there is him paying £60m+ for Muller (who is ostensibly a right-winger anyway).

Jimbo 1

Sign you again Gus, Not after the way you stood on the ball in 88

Gus Caesar

Haha….

Deanodoes

I can cope (just about), if Arsenal don’t sign a striker. I’m more upset that there seems to be a feeling that there’s no talent in the market. Missing out on the likes of Kondogbia and Schneiderlin is more frustrating. Let’s face it Benzema plays every game for Real, it’s going to be near on impossible to persuade him to move.

Gus Caesar

Why would you want Kondogbia? He’s not a defensive midfielder, he plays in the same position as Cazorla, Ozil, Ramsey and Wilshere… He’s also not a striker.

jiminycrickets

neither is vidal but if you put a vidal-ramsey/ kondogbia ramsey pivot…they’re 10x more defensively stable than any arteta partnership you can have with any other player….that’s why the coquelin insertion to the starting lineup when arteta was not fit was so mind blowing…the difference was so profound that changed our fortunes and went on an fairy tale run that went a bit blunt towards the end of last season

Eissek

If you have a Ramsey Vidal pivot then where does that leave Ozil and Cazorla?//?

Gus Caesar

How exactly would bringing a more attacking player than Arteta into the team make the team more stable defensively than a team with Arteta? Maybe we should sign De Gea and play him up front too?

dan

the best solution for now is to lock theo walcott and danny with henry working on their movement and finishing only coz basically all of the other aspects of their game have already been developed, possibly getting advice from eduardo and bergkamp too, lets work on what we already have. oooh and they can watch highlights of the exploits of TGSTEL on their down time

- DFS

Henry seems incapable of intelligent punditry, so what on earth makes you think he possesses any capability to develop players.

If he is, perhaps he’d like to volunteer to coach Giroud instead of running him down.

die hard gooner

Jackson martinez, paulo dybala, Luciano Vietto, alexandre lazcette, christian benteke, Gonzalo Higuain are names that come to me as of right now. Not every one will be a bargain. some of them are the finished article, some with huge potential. They might even pull an aguero. Do you know why atletico madrid are successful in bringing World class strikers? That’s because they take risks and spend a lot on potentially great players. Forlan, Torres, Aguero, falcao, Diego costa, and now jackson martinez Just in the last Decade. Alvaro moratta was being offered to us a few seasons back and we… Read more »

Eissek

How many goals did Alvaro moratta score last season?

Mark

In many ways I am glad Wenger does not overpay for shiny new toys as many of the players that we’ve been linked with have gone elsewhere and been total duds. It is extremely frustrating though to see some of the players that we really could use go to rivals (like Schnederlin) or other clubs in Europe for amounts that we surely could afford. In 2011 Wenger did nothing really until that frentic last day signing Santos, the BFG, Arteta, Park, etc.., but in 2012 he did his business early with Podolski lined up before the season ended and Giroud… Read more »

Man Manny

If any of Suarez, Lewandowski, Aguero, Muller, Benzema, Aubameyang, Messi, Ronaldo and a very select few that may have escaped my memory is not available and willing to come to the Emirates, then I am satisfied with our strikeforce.
We have Chuba Akpom coming through and any signing that is not of absolute class is a disservice to the effort he has put in already.

Kami

“When the players are not free you cannot buy them.”
For once I like to pull this sentence out of context, just because it sounds so great.

Marcus

What do you think of signing Zlatan? The likelihood aside, he has one year left on his deal at PSG so the fee wouldn’t be enormous although he would definitely demand high wages. Still he is an incredible player who can “produce something out of nothing” and I think he’d be an upgrade on Giroud. Due to his age it’d mean he couldn’t play all the games so you could keep both parties happy to an extent. I am huge fan of him though so it’d be good to hear an unbiased opinion on this

Crew

Wenger will never buy a player like Zlatan. For the same reason he didn’t buy Balotelli last season. Not because of talent or ability, simply because they interfere with the togetherness of the squad. He doesn’t say repeatedly the words ‘cohesion’ and ‘togetherness’ for nothing.

Marcus

Yeah you are right, his personality might not be the perfect fit with the Arsenal philosophy. He might clash with players of similar experience like Arteta and Mertesacker due to them being out and out “team” players. That being said, I think Zlatan would fight for the team too and he could add that aggressiveness that we don’t have at the moment; the “don’t mess with my players” attitude that I would like to see a bit more when some of our players are on the receiving end of some extremely dirty tackles. I think it’s a risk worth taking… Read more »

Gus Caesar

Exactly this. Besides, don’t forget that he turned down the offer of a trial and has made a number of negative comments about us since.

Santi Claws

Zlatan is different to Balotelli. He is a winner and a superstar. Balotelli is a child trapped in a man’s body – all talent and no head. Zlatan is an arsehole, but he is the probably the most audacious footballer in the world and is incredibly skilful as well as being so tall and strong and balanced and creative. He has scored and won everywhere he has gone and is incredibly driven even if it is by his own ego and ambition rather than loyalty and love. It’d never happen in a million years but if Zlatan Ibrahimovic joined us… Read more »

Andy Mack

Zlatan is an unstoppable force when he wants to be, but only when he wants to be. In the French, Italian and Spanish leagues, the teams he’s played for are good enough to beat the bottom half of their table by playing with just 10 men when zlatan is only in the mood for a walk about. He gets motivated for the big games (and the odd little one) but that won’t work in the PL. The PL bottom half are pretty much all fighters and we can’t carry any player in those games, but he wouldn’t be prepared to… Read more »

indrossi

There’s this 19 year old kid on Fifa 15 called Yassin Benzia, give him two or three years and he’s the shit srsly you guys.

When SkiesAreGrey

Shouldn’t we be more worried about our defensive situation?! We can easily score goals, week-in week-out, letting in stupid, unnecessary goals needs to be addressed first and foremost! I can’t be the only one that everytime the opposition is on the counter, think to myself ‘guaranteed goal!’

Gooner87

Charlie Austin – not a big name but guarantees goals and scored more than sanchez last season, no need to break the bank either and could at least compete with giroud/provide something different.

Gus Caesar

Christ we are getting desperate now. Who wants to complete striker bingo by suggesting Jordan Rhodes?

Gus Caesar

Heh…

gooner87

Don’t think a 20 goal a season striker is getting “desperate”, but he’s not a big name/doesn’t play for a big club, so is automatically terrible according to most Arsenal fans.

Chuffy

As much as I’d love a 40 million plus striker I just don’t see it happening. We have enough options all over the pitch now to be able to cope. My biggest worry is the attitude of the players is certain games and the tactics deployed by the management. How is we can be so utterly appalling against West Ham and then fly out of the traps against Palace. To me the manager never reacts until about the 70th minute to make changes when we’re playing poor. They should be playing out of their skins every game, because that’s how… Read more »

Gus Caesar

I think the only issue i’d take with Wenger’s comments is the idea that you can’t buy a player if the club that owns him doesn’t want to sell. Provided you can persuade the player to make the move and can afford him then I think that you could sign most players. Look at John Stones and Chelsea – the club don’t want to sell but anyone that doesn’t think he’ll end up at Chelsea this summer is an idiot, of course he will. The power doesn’t only lie with the club that owns the player, we all know that… Read more »

Chris

Anyone else wonder if lacazette would be the right man?

Gus Caesar

If he is, why isn’t anyone else moving for him?

GeneWildersCrazyDNA

@gus caeser Jeez, people are making conversation in the comments, that’s all. Nobody is forcing you into their way of thinkng, nobody is acting like they have all the answers. Get off your high horse and understand that people are entitled to speculation and having opinions. Do you feel so important that you should constantly have the final say? So knowledgeable that people should take your word as gospel? I’m telling you now sunshine, you’re genuinely adding nothing of intellectual value to any of the comment threads you wade through. You’ve littered the entirety of this comment board with your… Read more »

Gus Caesar

Grow up. I’m as entitled to an opinion as anyone else and entitled to have and give an opinion on anyone else’s. If you don’t like that, perhaps don’t waste your time reading a comment board with fan’s views and just stick to talking to the people who agree with your view.

meletios

cavani linked as well, dont follow french league so no idea how he is doing(not just goals)..
thoughts ..?

Fatgooner

Oh, come on! These statements by Wenger are so predictable that you could almost quote them verbatim without having actually heard the interview. And they’re rubbish. There ARE available quality players out there – for a manager with the desire and ability to go out there and get them. But Wenger won’t because he can’t and doesn’t have to. Wouldn’t it be great if Wenger found himself like Jim Carrey in “Liar, Liar”? Here’s what he’d say if he couldn’t lie: “I can believe the position I’m in! I’m at a club with no ambition other than to make money.… Read more »

Gus Caesar

Tool

jiminycrickets

you are the real tool for blindly supporting a manager backed by a board/owners who are content with status quo because there’s a economist in charge who will bring in the dough with the least amount of investment…now that’s what you call efficiency…let’s have it change our name to the arsenal nuggets

JJ's Bender

The irony in your first sentence is astounding

jiminycrickets

forget about signing a top class striker…we never buy when it’s the right time, when we think a player is worth 30m and the going rate is 50m; we say no and then 2 years later that particular striker is 50m but the club asks for 60m…and then you say, “well, he certainly isn’t worth 60m”. Our transfer dealings are a sham, whoever running the show is clueless…our forte is buying 5m strikers and turning them into 25m and then either selling them on when they’re unhappy so that they can win major titles at big clubs or keep them… Read more »

Gus Caesar

This argument has more holes than the average teabag. Just one question for now – how do you explain Alexis then?

jiminycrickets

if he didn’t sign alexis there would be danger of dropping out of the top 4…you need some good players to stay in top 4 as well…alexis was a much needed buy after ozil underperformed and hit with injuries…you cite one player as an example of our “ambition”….why didn’t we solve our problems in central defence and DM when we badly needed those players? Are you going to go with the excuse of not being able to get “top quality” again? PLease…decent players can be had for 25-30m but no…in Wenger’s eyes 30-40m is the valuation for truly top quality… Read more »

Gus Caesar

I don’t have enough time to teach you mate, maybe listen a little less to Talksport and stay off the beer…

jiminycrickets

you don’t have enough time…or you don’t have a valid argument against mine? use non relevant insults to butter up your rhetoric…only brainwashed wenger fans will do that

JJ's Bender

With Gus here mate, no matter how many times we have tried explain in the past some people just cant get their heads round reason – better to let them (yourself included) get their knickers in a twist and relax. Its Friday for the love of Dennis!

Stuart

If you don’t ask you don’t get! Put in a proper offer for one of the top top strikers and you may have a chance or at least get a figure they may be willing to sell for, everyone has a price. As respectful as it is to play by the rules sometimes you need to bend them in order to get things through, it’s not like we ain’t been shafted by other teams bending the rules. But for good or bad Wenger has not hot a ruthless bone in him so would not even consider it

Gus Caesar

How do you know that he hasn’t asked or put in a bid and just been told that the player isn’t for sale at any price?

JJ's Bender

Because TalkShite, The Daily Star or Metro haven’t reported it

Flash

Should we be considering berahino? I’m not saying we should. But maybe we should.

Gus Caesar

No, no we shouldn’t.

my name is my name

Let him, Kane & Lukaku prove theyre not one season wonders then maybe

GeneWildersCrazyDNA

Getting a bit tired of Arsene saying players aren’t available. Probably shouldn’t leave it till mid-August as coaches are planning the season with the squad they’ve got. Leaving it late doesn’t always get you a bargain, sometimes it makes it more expensive. Every other team is willing to spend, so to compete so must we. Personally I couldn’t care less if we spend £50m or £50k, but its the fans’ spent money and the fans deserve a new striker if thats what they want. We spent enough time being patient during the ‘paying off the Emirates’ decade. There are options,… Read more »

Gus Caesar

I’ll limit this to two comments:

1. Keeping the fans happy is no reason to buy a player – in case you missed it, no fans are the manager of the club and for very good reason.
2. Kondogbia is not and never has been a DM.

JJ's Bender

3. He gets asked the same questions – so why not use the same answers

GeneWildersCrazyDNA

Wow, condescending and patronising in response to a completely non-provocative comment, well done you. I’ll keep this to three comments: 1 – You’ve clearly missed the simple point of my comment. I’m not saying fans should pick the players only for the club to bow to specific demands. But simply that we have a lot of money in the coffers, money brought in from ticket, merchandise and television revenue, all of which is money generated from the fans. The fans, as well as pundits, critics, ex-players et al are suggesting, in droves, that Arsenal need an extra striker and or… Read more »

richardanus

But Arsene, you killed TGSTEL !! And now you moan about a lack of top qualitee on the market.

Gah, you kill me man.

Man Manny

To think that Adebayor and Chicharito were at some point signed by Madrid albeit on loan.

Gus Caesar

They also signed Julien Faubert from West Ham…

JAL

Dude, not sure how many posts you’ve made today, but you need to get out more.

Paul

No striker coming then. Oh well let’s crack on COYG!

heroku_arsenal

How about we sign Alexis Tsipras? I hear he is a free agent now.

Alexstratz

I understand his position but some teams (*cough*Chelsea2014*cough*) always seem to have top players available in positions they need the most. Curious really.

Andy Mack

Are you referring to
1) the two-faced Spaniard
2) the nasty cunt striker with iffy injury record whose manager is the ‘Spendy Ones’ buddy?

my name is my name

I dont know at 20m was Pedro not worth a punt? Would Remy at 8m not have got us closer to the title last season when Giroud was injured? How about Mitrovic at 13m (who is only 20 and would have had a resale value if it didnt work out). Obviously none of these names are world class or better than Giroud but are out and out strikers that are still better than Welbeck and Walcott. In a world where there is a shortage of strikers (who cost extortionate 40m plus minimum when you find them) are these figures not… Read more »

my name is my name

until*

Andy Mack

I thought Pedro’s a winger……

my name is my name

When Messi is on the pitch you would play wherever you got the chance. It so happens he can play on the wings too but his ability & movements clearly indicate he is a striker.

Andy Mack

Messi is a winger/’play anywhere he wants to’ player, but he’s not a CF so why would he keep Pedro out of the CF position?

Green arrow> Red arrow

If Pedro occupied the CF position and Messi went off ‘playing anywhere he wants’ then what you would have at times is one of the full backs exposed when defending. Most of the time Pedro was asked to do a job out wide and every so often would interchange with Messi when Messi wanted to play on the wings.

Andy Mack