Oxlade-Chamberlain linked with Liverpool switch

Wenger expects Oxlade-Chamberlain to be fit for Saturday

The Telegraph are reporting tonight that Liverpool are ready to step-up their chase of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, despite seemingly working on the basis that the 23 year old could cost £35m.

Like Mesut Ozil, Alexis Sanchez, Jack Wilshere, Wojciech Szczesny and Kieran Gibbs, the midfielder is heading towards the final 12 months of his contract – but as yet no new terms have been offered by Arsenal.

Arsene Wenger has repeatedly spoken about his desire to keep the player, and just last week said it was vital that he remained in North London.

“I personally think it’s vital that Chamberlain stays at Arsenal,” he said.

“We bought him when he was very young and built him up. He has a great mentality and a good football brain and it would be big damage for us to lose this kind of player.”

There were stories last month which seemed to stem from the Oxlade-Chamberlain camp suggesting that the lack of an offer from Arsenal was a problem, and that any new deal would be rejected whatever the wages on offer.

All part of the brinkmanship and negotiation process, and it’s hard not to look at this story as one to try and force Arsenal into some action.

Good luck with that though. They can’t even make a statement about the future of the manager, let alone make their minds up about a player who has struggled to maintain consistency down the years.

Meanwhile, the Mirror say Wenger will be handed £200m to spend in the summer as the war-chest briefings continue.

You’ll forgive us if we cock a cynical eye towards them.

Check out today’s Arsecast Extra, on Palace, Wenger, Board + What is the club

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101 Comments on "Oxlade-Chamberlain linked with Liverpool switch"

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Dan O

No poo o meter on this one?


Letting the Ox go now is kind of pointless. If we weren’t going to offer him a new deal then we should of looked to sell him last summer when we could of got a better price for him, because now he has all the power going into his final year.

Like how many times do we have to get this wrong at Arsenal? This is why Wenger shouldn’t be in charge of this sort of thing as well as the footballing stuff too. There has to be a direct correlation between us continually letting players contracts run down and Wenger being in charge of the business side of the team as well. There simply isn’t enough time for him to do everything. I genuinely think that’s what it is. And I think in a lot of ways he is so naïve because he is so close to the players, too close for me.

He’s probably like ‘Oh, myself and Alex get along great on the training field, he will sign a new deal and stay at Arsenal.’ Whereas in reality Alex has his agent on the phone every day being like ‘We can get you X amount a week more at Liverpool, or Chelsea,’ like he cant see the wood for the trees, combined with him being stuck in the ‘good old days’ when a players word was a players word. But that’s not the case anymore. These guys have seriously slick agents running their careers for them. The agents get huge bonuses when they force deals through – so its always in their interests to move the players on, ‘Still no contract offer from Arsenal Alex, no worries, I’ll put the feelers out there and get back to you at lunchtime,’ By lunchtime Alex probably has a few potential offers – and who is a young man going to believe? That Arsenal want to genuinely keep him, or the advice from the guy that probably helped broker the deal that got him his contract at Arsenal in the first place, advising him to move to Liverpool and take a huge contact offer – like they’re super tough spots to be put in at 23/24 years old.

And the whole time you’ve got Arsene skipping round the training ground thinking all the players love playing at Arsenal.

Me So Hornsey

Its ‘vital that he stays’ yet he hasn’t received a contract offer? WTF is going on at The Arsenal? Does anyone have a clue anymore?


Its common for contracts to await the summer.

Particularly as there is issues surrounding the manager and the future.

The players and agents will want to wait on development and weigh all options.

It is not entirely int he clubs hands.

At the same time it does not pay to have the manager at this point announce anything :

1) If he should say yes I will stay, the same old crowd will start to moan and whinge, banners, airplanes, negativity, not what the team needs to finish the season having the crowd on their backs and adding to the already low confidence

2) If he should say he is leaving, certain players aside from Ozil and Alexis will also be looking to the summer and their agents will distract them. Again, not the focus we need to salvage our position (and minimum finish) for over 21 years.

Therefore I don’t find it surprising in the least that we are quiet on the contract front.

Hardly an issue or crisis unless you are prey to the press.

The important hing at this point is for the gaffer to get his act together and extract the most out of the current players available, get over the line for the season (and oh yes, there is the FA cup).

Everything-else will be further distraction.


No mate. No one’s got a fucking clue. That’s the problem. Board has no clue about what football is or how a football club should actually be run. Manager seems to have no clue about how to direct his players. Players have no clue how to execute anything on the field. Fans have no clue what is going on. Even the Arsenal Facebook/Social Media chap has no clue about the fans’ mood.

I think only the kit man has some sort of clue as to what his job entails. Along with the chap who cuts our grass.

Sir Henry Norris\'s Brown Envelope
Sir Henry Norris\'s Brown Envelope

If the kit man knows what is going on why can’t he sort Wenger’s zipper?



‘You can only lead a horse to water, you cant make him drink,’

The guy gives Wenger his coat, but he cant make Wenger zip it up properly.

Faisal Narrage

Anyone know why exactly we’re waiting till the summer?
We didn’t need to for Giroud or Kos. Surely Dick Law and his people deal with Ox’s people and Wenger and Ox aren’t involved?

Why are they waiting till the summer?


Sounds like something they made up


And they will make more up if the gaffer should announce he is leaving at this point.

The stories of cultures circling some players will only intensify and it is not what we need right now.

The situation is correctly managed by the “Board”.

Fed up gooner

Bollocks. Rat sinking ship? Who would blame the fella?


As much as I’m feeling pretty negative towards all our playing staff at the moment, I would be sad to see the Ox go, I really feel like there’s a good player in there and an injury free campaign (unlikely as that is for any Arsenal player) could really see his potential realised. Theres a number of players in our squad I’ve given up on but I’m not ready to give up on the Ox just yet. Also he’s basically the only player who always goes and claps the fans which is a plus in my book.


Are you the guy I talk to about my drug problems?


It’s nice that he claps the fans, but we’re not looking for a quality CM not another Gunnersaurus here.


Gunnersaurus doesn’t do trials.


We need a new CM in the summer.

It may be a complicated summer for us.

Which is why much as many may feel Wenger has hit his limit (Several seasons ago), it may be that we might still have reason to hold him for another season in transition to ensure we negotiate the difficult period and hand over a strong set to the incoming manager who will have to adapt to the league as is amongst other things.

If post 2018 may offer better management choices, it may also further lend credence to be patient.

Both options are open – releasing Wenger in the summer or maintaitning him for one more ‘step down’ season to put things in place.

It will be a disaster in managing from the board if they prescribe the knee jerk reaction some fans would prefer.

It will be prudent from the board if they weigh out the final outcome of the season and see what availability is like plus extrapolate a season down if we have better options then.

There is NO crisis.

There is a team playing below potential.

There is a gaffer who cannot extract the maximum out of the current crop of players.

BUT we are not a poorly managed club by any means.

…unless you believe the media and their crisis mongering. The likes of Carragher and such would love to sow seeds of dissent amongst the rank to numb them from the thought that their own Liverpool have not been in title contention for over a quarter of a century even with a host of managers coming in and out.

We need to stay calm and focus first at crossing the line in footballing terms.

All contracts and other ‘negotiations’ can wait.


Sorry mate, but the wool has been well and truly pulled over your eyes. Even the lack of communication and many many contradictory remarks from people in the club suggest it’s a mess. I appreciate optimism but that ship has sailed. As sad as it is to say, Wenger staying for another year is going to do more damage to the club than him leaving now. Fans are fed up; our own away fans booing and singing “you’re not fit to where the shirt” is evidence. In my 30 years of supporting the club I don’t remember a scenario like that which suggests there is some form of a “crisis”.


in the hand of a right manager i am sure ox , wilshere , ramsey will all look world class players. they have the potential , they have proved it many times . its just a matter of having right tactics to extract the best out of them. i really hope all of them including sanchez stays atleast another year till we a get a new manager


I love the Ox and there’s probably a chance he thrives at Liverpool, but he shouldn’t hold us to ransom. Out of the British core, he’s one I’d like to stay. I say sell if he keeps acting up and buy a CM/another wide forward who has end product.


I don’t think people fully comprehend how the market works.

Ox is not holding anyone to ransom.

He is doing the right thing to assess his position in the summer against any options. Particularly as the manager’s situation is unclear.

And the club does not have as much control on proceedings as imagined. There is also an agent involved and they will want (it is their sacred duty) to extricate as much for their client as possible.

Nothing is going to change from here to end of season Ox hasn’t signed. He can still push for us if we use him effectively. The question is how do we do that? And more importantly can Wenger do so or will he revert to type and make some incomprehensible decision. Alas.

Clive St Helmet

He’s almost certainly not threatening anything in person. His agent will be doing all of the politics.


Tottaly agree, of the so called British core the ox is the one we need to sign up and keep. The rest I’m not fussed about.
He’s the one that could come back and haunt us if he signs for someone else.


I would keep Jack because he’s technically brilliant compared to Ox. I feel that Jack if he’s healthy he will be better for us then an inconsistent Ox


For me, Ox is devastating off the bench but lacks impact from the start most of the time.
The frustration also comes from his injury record – just as he’s getting up a head of steam he gets injured. Still think there’s a top player in there though be a shame for him to walk.

Once, twice, three times Afobe
Once, twice, three times Afobe

Cool story bro.

Consider my cynical eye thoroughly cocked


I am ashamed to say I am apathetic as to who goes or stays or comes. I am ashamed already please don’t thumb me down.


arsenal’s PR machine trying hard: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/football/2017/04/11/arsenal-put-decision-arsene-wengers-future-end-season-amid-fan/

“despite the perception that majority owner Stan Kroenke is separated from the current angst, there is daily communication”


I would be surprised if they announced his contract extension until after the season ticket renewals have been dealt with.Money is all the club cares about.


The Daily communication probably happens on a watsapp group entitled ‘gullible fans’. The last conversation went something like this:

Gazidis: We need to release some more bullshit PR to make me look good, the fans are revolting. AW can’t hold back the tide of ire. I just got a 2 week old turd in the post and got called a c**t by the AA man who left me on the road for 6 hours. Even my wife is not putting out. She says she won’t sleep with cowards. What shall I do?

Sir Chips: Don’t worry Ivan, football fans are fickle and thick. We can sell Alexis and Ox to Liverpool and Chelsea, slip to mid-table, get humped by spurs, and sign Arsene to a 15 year contract and the fans will still buy tickets. Let’s just increase ticket prices by 20%, and write a condescending letter to the ATC telling them how ungrateful they have become. Failing that we can spin something about a 20 trillion pound war chest hahahahaha (*multiple laughing emojis) Stan what do you think?

Stan: I don’t care.

Sir Alan Sugar: Hi guys, everything you just said, I just want you to know I am fully on board. Anything to force another Piers meltdown. Your all fired! Only kidding x

Gazidis: Sir Alan, who invited you to our group?

Stan: I literally couldn’t care less if I tried right now.

Spanish Gooner

I hate to say it, but I really really am struggling to care anymore

Tyler Briscoe

Here here, I don’t watch games anymore, rarely full highlights, just livescore, news.arseblog and ArsenalFanTv.


I was with you until arsenal fan tv


Arsenal FANTV does a poor job.

It merely amplifies certain segments of the fan base.

The same old tired bores are on over and over again moaning. They can’t even defend their position against Neville.

Seriously, Robbie needs to expand his horizons a bit. Its the same narrative, the loudest voice is not necessary the wisest..often times (and in this case) not.

Vincent Kompanys Forehead
Vincent Kompanys Forehead

I dont understand the hate against AFTV. Robbie seems like a sound bloke and gives matches the same attention regardless if Arsenal win or lose.

Naturally he makes more money from the defeats and he markets the Wenger out controversy very well but its not like he is a Katie Hopkins type shitstirrer.

I cant blame the guy for seeing a gap in the market and exploiting it, he must be earning good money and is working for himself based on a subject/club he is very passionate about;must of us dream about being self employed and eating well.

I also detect a bit of classism against AFTV, although the bluds and fams are hilarious it sometimes feels like some people and gunners think some other fans opinions are irrelevant based on socioeconomic standing.

Rant over


There are some real idiots at Arsenal Fan TV. But equally, there are intelligent people that go on week in week out and give their honest opinions about what’s going on. No filter, no agenda, no bs you get from Sky, BT and BBC.

What some idiots say may be embarrassing but just don’t watch them, they’re the same people each time. For me I enjoy watching it because I get a better understanding of how other fans are feeling about our shitty situation, but I know right after the game isn’t the best time to get a rational anylisis so I understand the emotion levels are high.

Big respect to Robbie for offering this platform to any fan that wants to voice their opinions.

Clive St Helmet

“Aaare you Robbie in disguise? Aaare you Ro-oh-ohbie in disguise?”


Us fans complain about the state if the club now and protest and protest and the message it’s not getting across to the board yet you’ll see the Emirates at full capacity the next home game. The message will only get across when they start seeing a lot of empty seats as it is as clear as day that money is the board’s clear motivation-hurt them where it hurts the most (pockets) and they’ll start paying attention. An empty Emirates sends a clear message that supporters are fed-up with how rotten Arsenal currently is which in turn would not bode well for the image/brand of this club especially to those supporters that watch and buy merchandise from far away. Does the board really want to run that risk?


So what? We already have the tikets and they know we will have it for the next season when they buy another Xhaka before season pass deadline and throw rumors with half hearted bids for Icardi and Lacazete.


Because most fans are a bit more sanguine and can put things into perspective.

Sure we are under performing and it is extremely annoying but it isn’t quite the full blown crisis some would like to draw.

What the team needs now is the supporters backing them …through thick and thin.

Not some fickle protest which frankly only serves to add to the ‘poisonous atmosphere’ they like to complain about.

back the team.


This is nonsense.

The club absolutely is in a full-blown crisis. If you don’t think the way we played at West Brom and Crystal Palace is utterly unacceptable, I don’t know why you watch football.

The best analogy to the state the club is in is someone suffering from alcoholism.

It’s something that takes time to develop and while there are some warning signs, they’re easy to miss.
Sure, it’s not as probably not as bad as leukemia, the black plague or having your face ripped off by a chimpanzee, but it’s a serious illness nontheless.

And you certainly don’t help an alcoholic by “backing them”. You help them by making them give up the booze.

You help Arsenal by making them ditch Arsene and the hopefully the owner, because if we keep supporting failure and mismanagement it’s not getting better.

No way

I think the board are getting too much criticism. We spent 100 million last summer, more than ever before. They don’t interfere with team selection and give the manager the final say over transfers and player contract extensions. They have stood by a manager that has finished 4th (plus fa cup), 3rd (plus fa cup) and 2nd in the last 3 years.

The stories of an offer to extend the managers contract have been around for months meaning if they are true, the offer was before or early on in our bad run.

I know they are not born gooners but are they really doing so much wrong?


I have had this same thought too. They aren’t involved in training or team selection or even influence the signings we make. If we had a competent manager I feel the board would be a dream to work with.

The only issue with the board is that they seem content with not winning trophies and therefore don’t seem to put any pressure on the manager.

Eric Blair

Could be an option if we’re out of the running for top 4/6 by the last game of the season against Everton and there’s nothing to play for. A mass boycott by the fans and a half full stadium for a premier league game, even season ticket holders who have already paid, would send quite a powerful message. The players don’t deserve the ‘lap of honour’ although I would feel sad for Wenger as it would in all likelihood be his last appearance as manager for us. We could say goodbye to him properly the couple of games before I suppose.

Dishonest Federation

I hope Ox stays. And bring back Campbell. I feel that their work rate and potential are worth having.


Completely agree. Is anybody fucking surprised about the recent ‘lack of fight’ when the players with those qualities are simply not picked week in week out. Campbell, Perez and Mertesacker spring to mind.
Theo Walcott captain, do me a favour.

No way

Walcotts the longest serving player and he’s 4/5th in line.

We are without our goalie, best defender and best midfielder. Our star player is out of form. Our captain hasn’t played all season. Our 1st choice striker is coming back from 2 long term injuries. Is it really any wonder we’re struggling.

Faisal Narrage

1. You talk of our keeper as if he’s been out for months or as if he was even in great form. He’s only been gone for a couple of games, our form has been shit for much longer.

2. Were we not shipping goals and losing even with Kos?

3. Per being our captain is irrelevant. And he has been available, if he hasn’t played, ask Wenger.

4. Since when was Welbeck ever our first choice striker?

5. Well if Santi is so decisive, why didn’t Wenger have a replacement? Or more interestingly, who was he planning to play Xhaka with? One suspects it wasn’t Santi but Ramsey, and he’s been shit also.

I really don’t understand what agenda you have for exagggerarion. Are you trying to absolve Wenger of blame and claim it’s the circumstance that’s causing our malaise?

No way

1) would you not have preferred to cech in goal at palace?
2) would our defence not be better with kos playing? Or do you think Gabriel is just as good?
3) we lack leadership. Per is a leader. If he had been fit all season it may have helped and would also probably mean he would be ahead of Gabriel in the pecking order.
4) last year when fit wellbeck played, this year the same. That suggests to me he is first choice.
5) we do have replacements for santo they are just not as good. It’s quite hard to have a back up as good as santi. maybe he was planning on playing xhaka with santi.

I’m not absoving arsene of blame but surely the things I’ve mentioned have also had an effect?


4/5th in line for what?

Pray tell, which 3/4 forwards were injured on Monday that allowed him to play?

He plays regularly, about as regularly as any outfield player (barring Sanchez and the defenders).

He starts pretty much every time he’s fit.

And our first choice striker has not been injured, he’s just been moved to the wing for no reason – probably because our manager has completely lost the plot.

Our best defender has been shit most of the year – that probably has to do with the shit defensive organization that’s been our staple for over a decade.

Cazorla has had a history of injuries well before the season started. He’s also in his 30s. You don’t build a team around Santi Cazorla.

Our captain hasn’t played all season – the fuck!? That just means we have a grand total of 1 (one) player with any notable leadership qualities. When your captain is out for the season, you choose a different captain. Unfortunately, on Monday, Wenger chose an indifferent captain.

To sum up – no, there really isn’t any wonder that we’re struggling, considering the fact that the squad had all these fairly obvious weaknesses which were left unadressed by the man who supposedly knows best.

No way

4th/5th in line for the captaincy


A lot of people value only dashing runs and flashy skills, at the most they measure the distance covered (as if we get additional points for running like a headless chicken like Ramsey), unfortunately a player being in position and doing his work properly goes unnoticed in most cases. While Theo will show flashes of brilliance in 3 out of 30 matches, players like Joel & Per (yes the slow Per) would just go about their work without much fuss and players like these add to team’s synergy and make others look better. Unfortunately, football has become too individualistic from being a team sport. This squad has fantastic individuals and that is the issue, there’s no synergy, sum of parts is less than their individual worth. I looked up the defensive stats of Arsenal from 2012-13 with Per in team and we’ve conceded 37, 41, 36, 36 and this year we’ve already conceded 39 and are in danger of hitting 50! So much for pace and slow Per! I’ve always said that this positioning is exceptional and he always makes others look good and grooms them. But we all want superstars not unsung heros!


FFS Campbell?


If it wasn’t Liverpool, and if it was 45m£, I would start considering…


i’m more worried that the poo-ometer isn’t fixed yet. is there no end to the madness?


We need one of those for the matches recently


Except it would be off the scale


Crank it to 11

Clive St Helmet

I thought they were being measured in hugs now?


No definitely turds


I don’t even have the desire to watch our games anymore. Something needs to happen real fucking soon, this can’t go on.


200m? I assume that would be after selling those players we have that have value.

Drogheda gunner

Why are they given wenger that kind of money to spend ,what just to buy a load of other lightweight ,spineless and with no bottle players.then the new manager comes in in 2 years and has a load of deadwood thats stuck on the wage bill and cant get rid cause no other teams want them.absolute joke.


If we get enough money then everyone is for sale. Specially players who are serial underachievers. If only this story was about Walcott…..

No way

19 goals in 33 games from a winger who rarely plays 90 mins. How bad a position would we be in without Theo?


15 passes all match against Palace – with a 47% success rate. Totally unacceptable. And the captain’s armband should default to the man who’s been at the club longest, but given to a someone who will bark instruction and encouragement to team-mates and raise everyone’s level. About time Wenger realises this.


*shouldn’t* rather than *should*


Unfortunately Liverpool aren’t smoking anything.. No drug strong enough to want Walcott.

Too Drunk To Be Offside
Too Drunk To Be Offside

For 35 mil, I would sell him twice and then some. Order now and you will get Ramsey as an absolutely Free add-on.

Too Drunk To Be Offside
Too Drunk To Be Offside

One simple comparison sums up everything wrong with this team right now.

Ray Parlour. He was not the most gifted of footballers, but what he lacked in technique he more than made up through effort and dogged hard work. He was a pitbull on the field. Chasing things down, tackling hard, and always giving it a 100%.

After the game Walcott said “they wanted it more from the first whistle.” or words to that effect. The thing is Parlour made sure no one wanted it more than him and that no one could want it more than him.

I would take a technically less Parlour over this technically more gifted bunch that wear the Arsenal shirt anyday of the week.

The trouble is Wenger has let this sorry lot live in total comfort, and they make millions without having to push themselves.

Accountability starts with the manager. Wenger has complete job security and therefore he has no reason to push the players to new levels. His pet players know that they will keep making millions as long as he is there without needing to do anything extra or without any need to improve.

Ramsay, is the perfect example of that. Had a good 3/4th of a season years ago, still makes millions off of it. Ox a total disappointment suddenly shows form only because there is a new contract to get.

Once he gets it, then under Wenger he will go back to living the life making millions doing nothing.

Now I feel it is no coincidence that the club’s decline started with Wenger getting 100% job security, and becoming untouchable at the club.

The club left Highbury and the board made it clear that he had a free reign with rebuilding no questions asked, and it spoiled him and he lost his hunger to win trophies.

In turn his lethargic attitude rubbed off on the players and spoiled them. So many have come and enjoyed a holiday at Arsenal. Arshavin, Ozil, Ramsey, Ox, Walcott, etc. because they know that Wenger is okay with thier inconsistency and mediocrity.

Its a shame what this club has become. Above all Wenger acting all mysterious about his contract situation is even more shameless. He is acting as if he going to win the treble in the final year of his contract and everyone is begging him to stay and he is enjoying keeping the fans guessing.

He is lucky to even have a contract offer after this mess. Stop acting like a self obsessed prima donna, and clear the air.

Too Drunk To Be Offside
Too Drunk To Be Offside

Having said that there probably isn’t a player on this team that I wouldn’t sell right now.

No way

It surely wouldn’t be that hard to get a player for 35 million that could contribute more than ox has this season

Bendtner\'s Ego


I’m having trouble getting to sleep. Can you tell me the story about the mythical war chest again? It’s my favourite.


This is most likely just spin from the Ox’s agent, but if anyone offers that kind of money for him I’d take it before they can change their mind. Being able to dribble past people one or twice a game doesn’t mean he can play central midfield for a serious top level team. He doesn’t have the consistent first touch, control or passing ability to play there and he’s a disaster without the ball. He’s been at Arsenal for nearly 6 years now and has produced maybe a handful of really quality performances. If he wasn’t English people wouldn’t be on here still offering all sorts of excuses for him.

Clive St Helmet

Look what Klopp had done with Adam Lallana. I reckon Ox has that in him, you know, and it just needs to be coached into him.

California Gooner

I’d hate to see Ox leave. But for the sake of his career he should leave. Ox would really flourish under Klopp.


Yes – Klopp will turn him into a unicorn.

Oh wait.


Keep the Ox. Sell Theo.

Also Gibbs, Jack can go.

We have enough project Little Britain with Welbeck, Ramsey, Holding, Chambers and Ox.

We need technical players with the rest of the league catching up with us thanks to TV money etc…look at Stoke, they played Shaqiri, Borjan, both technically superior to many of our players.

Deep midfield needs a player who can hold and carry the ball. The likes of Elneny (mediocre player), Ramsey and Coquelin are pass and play types.

We get some of the long range distribution with Granit but Santi’s ability to carry and hold the ball is missing. Hence we now go side to side.

We need an upgrade in deep midfield. With Santi getting older, I highly doubt he will be available in large stretches carrying a chronic injury.

The likes of a Saul Niguez (Athletico) or Fabinho (MOnaco) should be explored.

Also out wide, rather we bring in someone like Mahrez to Walcott.

We need to balance out the flanks if we persist in 4-2-3-1

If not at current crisis, we need to get more out of the players but also ensure more dominance in midfield (for that pesky second ball)…Elneny is so easily pushed off the ball Watch West Ham game and at 12’03 and 73’59, he loses the ball so softly which could have gone against us with two key opportunties for the Hammers.

Currently, I think we need to consider some sort of 3-4-2-1 extrapolation to ensure an extra body floating around the middle of the pitch.


1)This may allow Bellerin to go forward with more security with Mustafi slightly wider.

2) Ox will give cover to Monreal who lacks speed.

3) Ozil and Alexis can float across the line with Iwobi joining forward through the middle.

4) Granit will effectively hold the middle with Mustafi and Monreal pushing up leaving Gabriel to sweep.

5) Double pivot. Ozil and Alexis to transition in the wing backs (Ox and Bellerin) or play off of Giroud who holds the ball up better than Welbeck and is more efficient finishing.

It doesn’t extrapolate necessarily into a straight 3-4-2-1 of course as the defensive 3 will likely push more left so in a ways its a skewed back 4 but at least Bellerin gets some help from Alexis where Walcott generally doesn’t contribute as much in defensive awareness when Bellerin pushes up.

I would be wary of playing inexperience Iwobi in the midfield but I think he has the attributes in strength technical skill and an eye for the through pass plus with a 3 at the back, there is more margin for safety.

Hey, it carried Chelsea and transformed the same team from mediocre finishes last season into champions elect this season.

Not saying this is the antidote to all our woes but we need to simply find a way to extract the most out of available players currently.

Hector\'s Ballerina

You can’t honestly believe now is the time for a radical formation change? Let’s say for one moment Wenger has a sudden epiphany and alters formation for the first time in his 20 year career (and I don’t mean tweaks a la 4-3-3/4-2-3-1/442) to a back 3/5, who has the knowledge/experience of this set up to implement to the players effectively?

Would the players even listen or have any faith in Wenger/Bould’s instructions at this point? And even if they did action this change, you can’t possibly think the line up you’ve provided would ever have balance and security (the foundation of a back 3).

Let’s take Xhaka – metronomic in his passing, but incredibly immobile – more so than Matic or even Fabregas, who require the defensive output and ground covering capabilities of Kante to really enable them to dominate in central areas and provide a platform for Hazard and co to play. And you’d like to pair with Iwobi, who is struggling for confidence, most likely never played a deeper role and certainly not the in-game management or defensive awareness to support in the same way?

Potentially in the future the attributes you have mentioned may see him flourish in the future – I think it would be suicide for him right now, personally.

Monreal is not having the best season and while effective in the air, I’m not sure Ox as a LW or LB would provide effective cover and sweep around to cover when Monreal is forced to manoeuvre across to cover, as is habitual with a back 3.

A 3 man attack of Sanchez, Ozil and Giroud, whilst appearing similar to Chelsea’s on paper, would only serve to isolate the midfield further – Giroud cannot initiate the press, let alone sustain it. Does not have the aggression or mobility of Costa, and we all know Ozil’s capabilities defensively. I’m not sure this change would liberate him in an attacking sense, either, seeing as he would need to start ostensibly from one side and therefore manipulate space similarly to how he does for Germany. I think it would shackle him, and I don’t think Sanchez needs any further initiative to play in a more selfish manner than he currently is…

To summarise, lack the personnel, both from a coaching and playing perspective to bring this to fruition this close to end of season. Will never happen and thank God because it would be suicide. Just imagine the pundits after a loss having transitioned to a back 3 after never once changing formation in Wenger’s tenure? Press would have an absolute field day (or week’s trip to Isle of Wight)

The Chelsea system works because the manager has a vast experience playing in this manner, coaching this philosophy on and off the ball, almost photographical knowledge of where each individual should be at any given moment (offensively and defensively!) and the personnel lying in wait to transition the change.
Let’s be clear, without Moses (and their subsequent purchase of Alonso) they would have struggled. See what happens when Pedro/Willian/Azpilicueta have moved there (Palace at home, for example). Without Kante, or when any two singular changes have been made to their starting 11, their performance drops noticeably.

Arsenal lack the confidence, tactical awareness and personnel to execute this effectively. every player would need to be on their game and I’m yet to see evidence of Wenger coaxing any form out of these beleaguered players right now.

Crash Fistfight

Agree with your post, but I wanted to point out that Arsene initially played a wing-back system when he first came to the club, as that is what we’d been playing previously (I even remember writing down combinations of the players in that formation – not sure why I did this, it has to be said).

He didn’t change it until he’d bought Overmars and Anelka, so that he could play a 4-4-2.


Xhaka holding the midfield–you mean the guy who doesn’t know how to tackle yet?


Okay, feel free to stop this nightmare please. Any-time now…………


There’s certainly some big shit going on in the background, AW seems to have lost the dressing room but not just that, looks like he wants to retain certain players but they’re not offered terms by the club! I thought the shit had already hit the fan, but looks like we still a pile of it left in reserves. AW should just come out and clarify the contract situation of his and others, just say it, by not saying they’ve created a toxic environment- look at what it has resulted in, in case of Alexis & Ozil! It can’t be any worse, just say it, for heaven sake.


Arsene’s biggest problem is that he only understands half of a “possession” game – the possession half. He doesn’t understand that, because a possession team like Arsenal is always vulnerable to a counter- attack it must, as soon as it loses the ball, press hard to recover it before a counter-attack can be launched. That is why Pep has his six seconds rule. So it’s no good fielding players like Elneny and Xhaka because they can knock the ball around sweetly. You need players in midfield who will press hard to shut down counter-attacks. Coquelin was great at doing that at the start of the year, when Sanchez was CF. Now that has disappeared from Arsenal’s game and the team is getting torn to shreds. It is too easy to counter-attack. That is what Fat Sam meant when he said Arsenal’s centre-backs were left exposed.

Matt P

Of the British core, Ox is the only one I’d keep.
Wilshere and Ramsey are way overrated, and Walcott despite excellent periodic flashes has been underwhelming.

Beezus Faffoon

We would have to be mad to sell him to Liverpool after all the transfer shit they’ve put us through down the years… so it’s pretty tragic that I think there is a chance that we will end up selling to them! Miserable times are these. I’m really hurting.


Wenger only need sonogo and shinsuke NAKAMURA to turn arsenal into invincible mode again….


Utterly frightening to think that Wenger still believes he deserves a contract extension. How is everybody going to cope with another season of this? How is it gonna be any different? Those hoping that AW will change must be delusional as the himself. Like the last 10 yrs, he will stubbornly persist with the same flawed methods for as long as he’s allowed to. He clearly doesn’t care about what fans thinks. All about him and his desire to do his own way. The man is so stuck in his mission to prove everybody wrong Never gonna happen. Somebody needs to step in and put an end to this madness. As if the spineless performances are not terrible enough, AW post match interviews have become an exercise in self humilliation. How bad does it have to be before he leaves


I mean, if the club are going to think they can calm any of the fans by claiming that we have a ‘200m war chest’ to use in the Summer, they can seriously fuck off. I mean, we have invested that much over the past 2-3 seasons and got worse. Plus, what’s the point? The squad is good. Good enough to be challenging for the title, bar some midfielders who are below average. Manchester United showed us that you cannot just throw money at a problem and expect it to be fixed.
So ironic that after years of advocating the spending of money, the club seem to be deciding to do so when it is least needed.


The usual predictable Arsenal PR bullshit…


To be honest none of the british core worked out quite as well as I was hoping they wood injuries and other things have played a part but if they are offering 35mill close to what we paid for sanchez and ozil I would bite their hands off…


Do these cunts actually think fans will swallow the ‘200 million warchest’ bollocks? It doesn’t matter how much it is, 100, 200 or 500 million if you have the same outdated manager, no tactics & crap coaches. The only way we move forward is without Wenger and his coaching team.


we are a shambless


Santori you beaut! You have made so much sense with your posts. I can’t even begin to respond. Thank you is simply what I will say

Oh No Not Again

I hope the Ox stays. Come on Arsenal give him a contract and don’t let the players you want to stay get in to their last year of their contract.

Has to do with the 200 million I will believe it when I see it ha ha. Even if the money is true we won’t get much for that amount unless we buy young players to build the squad up like we seemed to have been doing for the last 20 years and this is what the squad is like shit.

fed up

I have a cunning plan… stick the £200m in the goal so no one can score past us lol then we just gotta hope someone can score for us rather than pass the ball sideways!!


Say, has anyone noticed we’ve been shit lately?


You haven’t been around here much recently have you

uncle D

Pat Rice says the fact that David Rocastle remains revered by Arsenal fans makes him “so happy”.
The former England international, who made 277 appearances for the club, passed away 15 years ago this week after losing his battle with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
He loved the Arsenal with a passion and the supporters loved him. They still do to this day and that makes me so happy.
Pat Rice
Rice coached Rocastle as he made his way through the academy, and says he was always destined for the top.
“I was very fortunate to have coached players like Niall Quinn and Paul Merson, Mickey Thomas as well, and all those guys were something else but I will always remember one story,” he said.
“I was annoyed with the youth team once and I brought them all back to Highbury, sat them all down in the away team dressing room and gave them a stern talking to.
“We were having a heated discussion on my part and I remember just saying to all 18 of them there, ‘How many of you are going to make it into the first team?’
“I’ll never forget the response because only one player held their hand up. It was David Rocastle – and boy did he make it into the first team. I’ll never forget that boy.
“He was fantastic. He loved the Arsenal with a passion and the supporters loved him. They still do to this day and that makes me so happy.”

I miss Pat Rice….


I really have no idea about this shit (and am glad I don’t), but I’m guessing that keeping everyone we might be losing this summer would basically cost us 200m, no?

Joel Campbell is sitting somewhere in some club battling relegation in Portugal saying “Get out while you still can Ox!” and laughing his ass off.

Lula da Gilberto

This would be one huge shit sandwich.


Is it not just simple, Wenger stays, OX, Alexis etc are off for hopefully a better career winning & challenging for trophies. We’ll just be left with the dross.

john Venables

Balham Gooner

Is it just me or do other people consider that the situation we find ourselves in is much more serious than even the most pessimistic fan appreciates. This summer will probably see us out of Europe and in 6th, or at best 5th position. Added to this is the almost certainty of losing the Ox, Ozil, Sanchez maybe Bellerin and maybe Jack Wilshere. This would be disastrous enough if we could replace them with at least equal talent. One of the pre-requisites for most top quality players is a place in the Champions league, I don’t think we can attract the like of Lacazette et al if we play only domestic football. Added to that is the likelihood of Arsene Wenger remaining as Manager, Boss, Head of recruitment, CEO, and just all round top dog, with no intention of changing anything. All of this will put us in the same marketplace as West Brom, Stoke, Everton, Southampton, Crystal Palace etc. whilst all the serious talent will be hoovered up by the usual suspects. This again will impact on any further challenge, even for 4th place. This could affect us for years, and the worst thing of all is that it’s too late to do anything about it now.