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Assessing the outright success of a transfer window before your new players have had a chance to settle in and, you know, play, is a tricky assignment. One can only look at it from a purely administrative point of view at this stage- which areas did Arsenal identify according to our understanding and in which areas did Arsenal manage to recruit?

There is a cautionary tale about judging on any other basis. Last summer Arsenal absolutely needed a high end-product wide player and they bought one at great expense in Nicolas Pepe. It didn’t make the team any better (which is not to ‘blame’ Pepe personally, you understand). We will have to wait and see exactly how the pieces fit and allow all of the variable factors that determine the success of a transfer to eventuate.

Arsenal acted quickly on the majority of their signings. Matri, Soares and Willian were … Read the rest

Worrying signs for Chelsea as vital new signing picks up an injury on international duty

There’s never a good time or situation for an injury to occur, but this might be one of the worst for Edouard Mendy.

He’s just joined Chelsea and he’s trying to establish himself in the team, while this international break is pointless for Senegal as it’s just meaningless friendlies that nobody really cares about, so these reports will be worrying:

Describing missing games “at the very least” is never a good sign because that shows that it’s not clear how bad the injury is just now, and Chelsea could really do with Mendy recovering quickly.

He might not be the highest profile or the most exciting addition to Frank Lampard’s squad this summer, but he’s certainly the most important … Read the rest

Tactics Column: Aubameyang makes his case to be Arsenal’s middle man

The trademark goal of Mikel Arteta’s early Arsenal reign, seen against Manchester City, Liverpool, Fulham, has a familiar ending. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang lurks on the far side of the pitch, the left, before the ball arrives at his feet at the final moment. And he scores. The perfect use of Arsenal’s best goalscorer.

But is it a waste of Arsenal’s most intelligent mover? Playing Aubameyang out wide has meant another striker, namely Eddie Nketiah or Alexandre Lacazette, has started every single game since Arteta took over. Even Joe Willock, off the bench, has filled in the sort-of-false-nine-pressing role in the centre of the frontline, with Aubameyang remaining on the left.

But moving the Gabonese into the middle of the pitch against Sheffield United on Sunday allowed Arsenal to have an additional creative player on the pitch and the Gunners instantly looked more dangerous. It might sound counter-intuitive to say Arsenal could … Read the rest

Video: More positive signs for Barcelona’s Griezmann as he wins the ball back and scores from distance for France

We may never really know what happened with Antoine Griezmann at Barcelona last season, but his transfer didn’t go to plan at all.

There were rumours that Diego Simeone had run him into the ground, he didn’t like being played on the left, Suarez and Messi wanted him to fail and he had injury issues, so it’s likely that multiple factors caught up with him.

He’s got a chance to start again with Ronald Koeman and it does look like he’ll be played through the middle this season, so the Barca fans will be happy to see that there are more encouraging signs around his game.

He’s struggled to find the net in La Liga but he scored for France tonight after showing some hard work to win the ball back, while that persistence was rewarded with a deflection that took it beyond the keeper:

Pictures from TF1

It’s possible … Read the rest

Thomas Partey: The midfielder tailor made for Mikel Arteta

Arsenal have strengthened adequately this summer after signing Willian and Lille defender Gabriel Magalhaes, but as news broke regarding the stalled talks for Lyon captain Houssem Aouar – pitchforks were out. It looked like midfield would be neglected again.

But with just hours left before the transfer deadline, the Gunners returned for long-standing target Thomas Partey and deposited his full release clause to LaLiga HQ. But who is the Ghanaian, what will he bring to Arsenal and why is he costing the best part of €50 million?

Phil Costa reports (@_PhilCosta)

After growing up in Odumase Krobo, Partey moved to Ashaiman with his father Jacob – who was also a football coach – aged 10 in order to pursue a professional career. Eight years later he was spotted by an agent playing for local side Odometah FC and promised opportunities in Spain should he make the trip north. … Read the rest

Liverpool ace to secure first-team football with loan move to European giants set

According to Record, Liverpool ace Marko Grujic will join Porto on a season-long loan deal, with the Portuguese transfer window still open until October 25, as per ESPN.

Record add that the Serbian has been identified as the much-needed midfield addition following the departure of Danilo Pereira on loan to Paris Saint-Germain and Vitor Ferreira on loan to Wolves.

Grujic will find first-team football at Liverpool extremely hard to come by due to Jurgen Klopp’s world-class options in midfield, with a loan exit for the German’s first ever signing perhaps the best option.

Journalist Goncalo Lopes reports that a deal is expected to be confirmed.

Grujic celebrating during his time at Hertha Berlin.

Arsecast Extra Episode 376 – 05.10.2020

Welcome to another Arsecast Extra, the Arsenal podcast, with myself and James from @gunnerblog.

On this episode of the Arsecast Extra we discuss the 2-1 win over Sheffield United on Sunday, in which two excellent second half goals helped us to three points against a difficult side. We touch on the introduction of Nicolas Pepe and the change in shape as a key factor in the win, a first Emirates goal for Bukayo Saka, the positives we should take from this game despite clear room for improvement, and where it leaves us in the table after the first four games. Then, as it’s transfer deadline day, we deal with a lot of listener questions about our business during this window. Has Mikel Arteta been backed properly? Should the owners do more to invest in the team? Has Edu convinced in his new role? How much has past spending hindered … Read the rest

Man City defender Eric Garcia remains at the club as Barcelona fail to find transfer agreement

Despite making it clear that he wanted to leave Man City and rejoin Barcelona, Eric Garcia didn’t get his wish.

The two teams failed to agree a deal according to a tweet from Diario Sport journalist Albert Roge and cited by Football Espana, and it means that the youngster will now stay with the Premier League outfit until the end of the campaign.

By then his contract will have run down, and the expectation is that the Catalans will get him for nothing.

However, the loan of Jean-Clair Todibo to Benfica was supposed to pave the way for Garcia’s arrival.

Now Ronald Koeman faces the possibility of no defensive … Read the rest

Sheff Utd preview + transfers going down to the 11th Aoaur

We’re in the middle of a tricky run of fixtures, and after defeat to Liverpool on Monday, Sheffield United visit the Emirates today.

This is one of the games we need to take three points from, with upcoming ties with Man City, Leicester and Man Utd before the end of the month. Despite their poor start to the season – three games, three defeats – there should be no question of taking today’s opposition lightly. We know fine well from the three games we played against them last season, which produced a one goal victory for each side, and a 1-1 draw.

Ahead of this one, Mikel Arteta spoke very highly of his opposite number, Chris Wilder, so we know there’ll be nothing taken for granted at our end. Calling his work ‘incredible’, he said:

We have experience of playing against them both in the Premier League and in

Read the rest

Man United will sign two stars tomorrow while world class winger awaits the green light to join them

There will be Man United fans wondering if it’s possible to sign an entire new squad after their horror showing today, but at least it looks like some reinforcements will be on the way.

The defence was the biggest problem today but the new signings don’t really address that, so they will be hoping that attack really is the best form of defence:

Cavani and Telles are the two names that most people will now be expecting to join the club, and they should certainly offer an improvement on what Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has now.

Some fansRead the rest