Some while back I tweeted the following quote, which I thought was an apt summation of what it’s like being a football fan in the close season.
Patience: “A minor form of despair, disguised as a virtue”. (Ambrose Bierce).
But I have to say that I have been remarkably zen about the summer so far. I do occasionally enjoying winding myself up into a tizzy about Arsenal – who doesn’t – but I’m just not in that frame of mind at the moment. I still think something substantial will happen, and I accept that spending big on a player can be a drawn-out process. If it was like buying a car, then fine, we should have been on the road by now, windows down, wind in our hair. But because buying a player relies as much on what’s going on at the selling club, sometimes it feels more like buying a house, where the chain up and down can be long, and a small change of circumstance elsewhere can put the whole thing on hold or cancel it completely.
If I was pushed to guess I’d say that’s what held up the Higuain deal – something changing either with him or perhaps more probably at Real Madrid. Maybe they’re waiting to secure someone else first.
The Suarez bid I find odder, mostly because it seems like a peculiar fit for all parties. It just seems improbable to me that a) we’d get him and b) he’d want to come, and this is before we even get into any subjective assessment as to his suitability and personality.
But I’m pretty relaxed about the whole thing. Maybe that’s ludicrous over-confidence, or simply that I have misplaced my marbles, but it’s mid July and the summer dealings are yet young for many clubs. And it really helps that there’s no enormous tug-of-war for one of our own players. That is refreshing.
So anyway, perhaps I am addled by the heat. But going back to salient quotes, I thought I’d end things by offering some advice to Arsene Wenger, delivered through other people’s words (always preferable to my own, I find).
Where large sums of money are concerned, it is advisable to trust nobody (Agatha Christie)
And finally, I’m sure he knows this already but in the event that he doesn’t:
Fools are in a terrible, overwhelming majority, all the wide world over (Henrik Ibsen)