Happiness is a signing by Wenger

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So here we are, halfway through the month now, and what have we got to show for it other than RSI from having pressed refresh on NewsNow more times than is medically advisable?

Well clearly, nobody’s been signed yet, but then again nor has anyone fundamental been sold (Hoyte and Simpson have gone on loan, but I’m not counting that).

We’re in pretty exalted company thus far: there’s been a lot of hot air but to date, I can only think of three big, £10m+ deals happening. Teams are either keeping their powder dry, or they’ve run out of powder entirely.

Our courting of Arshavin has all been played out far too publicly for Wenger’s liking, and mine too. While Zenit’s tactic has clearly been to start a bidding war, I can’t imagine the Arsenal hierarchy are enamoured at having their every negotiating moved played out on the back pages and pooter screens of England. We’re still in there by all accounts but any transfer still feels some distance off. Are there any others in Wenger’s sights? Maybe. Probably. Dunno.

I tell you what might help us slip the Arshavin deal in a bit under the radar, and that’s this ludicrous Kaka affair. I’m not how much is fact and how much is poppycock, but launching money around like confetti will only ever end in tears. Either for the player himself (imagine the resentment from the dressing room and the pressure on the player) or for the club, who if they get knocked back just end up looking a bit daft. Can gallons of money buy any player at all? You might all laugh me off the face of the blog, but I’d like to think it can’t – there are dozens of other considerations, not least whether the buying club is any good, or if the player in question wants to go there. In most walks of life you would jump at the chance of moving to a job that offered you four times your current salary, but when your current salary is several million pounds a year already, it would take a peculiar kind of motivation to move for the money alone.

What else have we got to show for it? Well despite a worrying lack of goals (11 scored in the last ten league games – which is neatly balanced out by 11 conceded), we’ve had two 1-0 wins on the bounce, which is very Georgegrahamesque. In truth, it’s been about as fun to watch as an end-of-era Graham side too, for the most part.

We’re basically just playing a game of patience. It’s become the speciality of the Arsenal fan. After all, it’s 7.5 months since we sold Flamini and we’re still waiting for his replacement.

We can wait another fortnight. Cigar, anyone?


Arsenal since about 1979. Thick, thin and all that.