Let’s get the boring non-Arsenal stuff out-of-the-way first, shall we? Ing-Ger-Land managed to shuffle themselves into the last 16 with a pretty boring 1-0 victory against an average Ukraine side that had the extra bit of verve that comes with playing in front of your own fans. ITV pundits said how ‘exciting’ the game had been, but they must have been watching a different game to me, because from where I sat there was a tap in header from Rooney and a ball that went over the line from Marko Devic’s attempt in the second half. The only other discussion of note from last night’s game was that some Blokhin decided to ‘offer out’ one of the Ukrainian journalists after the match. I love the idea of Ukrainian diplomacy. If only we had ‘Arry Redknapp and Joe Jordan as the England management set up – we’d be treated to similar delights.
In the games other match France slumped to a 2-0 defeat against a Sweden side that clearly wanted to show they are not entirely pants. Both M’Villa and Giroud got themselves some game time, but there was probably little Giroud was going to do with 12 minutes action.
Right, now that’s out-of-the-way, on to some Arsenal related news. It seems as though Arsene was quoted yesterday as saying that if Robin van Persie signed for Juventus he’d buy everyone a ‘caramello’. I find such a quote quite surprising from a man who usually wants to keep comments about transfer speculation to a minimum and conduct his business underneath Harry Potter’s cloak of invisibility. If such comments did indeed manage to escape from the mouth of Le Boss, there are three scenario’s that could be happening soon:
- Arsene knows that Robin is on the verge of announcing he’s staying and so feels comfortable enough to blatantly break the clubs own rule that they wouldn’t say anything about RvP’s situation until after the Euro’s
- Robin is off to another team that probably isn’t Juventus or Man City (given the news of how much they are willing to pay as well as the admission that the player doesn’t seem too keen anyway)
- Arsene is thinking about life after football and has begun initial research and development of making the perfect chocolate-based snack and marketing it to the rest of Europe. This initial comment is purely to generate some interest for some initial ‘free trial’ product placement.
Either of option 1 or 3 would be fine by me, because for the first time at least I would get something for a player leaving a club instead of commentary about how the player didn’t want to play for the club and we can’t keep an unhappy player – everyone else seems to be able to do it.
On a serious note, I am really surprised by this commentary by Wenger, but perhaps it is in fact a shrewd move and designed to force Robin to show his hand. If the Giroud and M’Villa deals were to be announced pretty shortly it would be quite difficult for Robin’s advisors to play the old ‘Arsenal didn’t match my clients ambitions’ card. If however, the move is financially motivated, then that’s fine by me – just don’t try to blow smoke up the arses of the Arsenal fans. We’ve had too many other players try it and it doesn’t make for a comfortable experience as we all know.
And finally from me for today, some of the papers are reporting that Thomas Vermaelen is wanted by Barcelona. Interesting one I have to say, especially as Thomas has: a) only signed a new contract in the last 9 months, b) professed his love for Arsenal and wanting to stay for his whole career, and c) as far as I am aware, has no DNA that is Catalan shaped, so why would Barca sign him? The only way this could possibly happen would be if a series of lorries arrived at the Emirates with bags marked with ‘£££’ on them. For that reason, I see this move as highly unlikely.
Until tomorrow you wonderful gooners.