It’s difficult to start anywhere except the non-Arsenal footballer Cheick Tiote, who died at age 30 yesterday on a Chinese training pitch. Your heart goes out to the family at this time and hearing somebody being taken so young really is a tragic state of affairs. I’m 34 and to hear of somebody dying at 30, with most of their life supposedly ahead of them, well, it’s just not fair. 

My instant reaction upon hearing the news was to wonder if anything can be done to prevent such instances, but this occurance seems a freak one, if we hadn’t have already seen Muamba and Marc Vivan-Foe already succumb to mystery defects. How do you find these? What can be done? Can anything be done?

It’s really sad news and you just hope that his family get the time to grieve alone and be thankful for having him. 

To Arsenal matters now and there’s still this Mbappe rumour swilling around the gutter press trough, which is unfortunate because I would like it to just be put to bed now. Real Madrid have already bid for the player and the last time we went toe-to-toe with them was Robinho I think. I can’t remember the final figures but I think Madrid offered about 50% more than us and even then the player was saying that Madrid was his dream, so I can’t see how Mbappe comes to us if Madrid are in the mix. We should just back away and look at something else, which is exactly what it looks like we’re doing with Lacazette, who appears to be fast becoming the new Frey, Kluivert, M’Villa, of the Arsenal transfer rumour mill. We were supposedly after him last summer but Lyon stuck to their guns and we stuck to our stance of refusing to pay over-inflated transfer fees to match the market. 

I seem to recall last summer that most Arsenal fans pertaining to know about French Football were saying they were not sure whether he’d really be a success if we had him, so it was interesting to see so many out in force yesterday hoping that a deal could be done. Personally I have no idea how good he is. I don’t want French football and I’ve pretty much managed to avoid the Europa League this season, for which I appreciate the irony, given our European status next season. But by all accounts it sounds like he’s had another year of scoring goals and for that reason it makes sense that we’re taking another look. There’s no doubt we’re in need of something different and if Arsène isn’t convinced of the prolific nature of Welbeck and wants a Giroud upgrade, then perhaps this makes sense as a way to go, although with Alexis soon to be out the door you wonder if it’s a replacement for one star rather than an upgrade.

Either way, at least both the manager and Ivan are active, shown by the picture of them both in Nice, which as we all know could mean the square root of bugger all. For all we know he’s gone to meet a young player from the Nice academy, but with his location being close to Monaco, there are some excited people online this morning putting two and two together to make 900. I guess Nice is a fair old distance from Lyon and so Monaco might have been his first destination, but it’s just as likely he’s giving it the ‘mega troll’ by renting a car and doing a south to north road trip of his homeland with I an, just so they can do a bit of bonding and fall in love with each other all over again.

Like I’ve been saying for the last week or so, the proof will be in the pudding and I’m not dining out just yet, so I’ll stay pessimistic until something real actually happens.

Aside from that I’m not really sure there’s anything else going on. We’re locked in transfer silly season now as people desperately grab at different pieces of cluckbait content for their respective teams, meaning the media are all gourging at the trough of advertising pound notes that they can feast on whilst the transfer news is at it’s speculative peak. I feel like switching it off for a while and maybe not even blogging, but my commute in to London can be a boring old thing you know, so I feel like I’m left with little choice.

Anyway, time to make my excuses and leave, so bye.