It seems just about everyone in the world wants to slap their proverbial balls on the table and declare an interest in Mbappe right now. PSG and Liverpool have ‘declared an interest’ if you listen to the gutter press and whilst we don’t know whether anyone’s interest is genuine other than Arsenal and Madrid – who have had offers turned down – as more teams circle around the Monaco forward, it feels like to possibility of us actually pulling off some kind of mega deal, becomes less and less.

And isn’t it ironic that whilst Champions League football hasn’t had that much of an influence on us signing the top-drawer strikers, in previous summers, all of a sudden it feels like quite a millstone around the neck. There will be plenty of cynics who will say that the bid was always going to be rejected and that Arsenal would have known this, but whilst I appreciate it’s season ticket renewal time, I’m skeptical that the club are basing their future plans on whether John and Josie Jones renew in Block 11. Having said that, the club will have known that he’d be hot property and so by having a go at a reduced price it means they can still be in their comfort spending zone.

You have to say though, this is how every summer starts, with one deal done quickly and then hope that others will soon follow. It happened last summer with Xhaka and the summer before that with Cech. It’s a freebie from Schalke this time, but the formula seems the same, which is why I don’t think we’ll see any activity for another month. Prove me wrong Arsène.

On the slightly Arsenal-related note, Werder Bremen have lost Gnabry to Bayern for some ridiculously paultry fee and with Bayern snapping him up, you do have to wonder if something dodgy has gone on here, especially given that Bayern were supposedly signing him last summer and then got all cold. This smells to me of tapping up last summer and then getting Gnabry’s ‘people’ to stick a clause in There which allows him to leave to the German Champions for nothing. If he flourishes there next season though, it’s pretty damning on Arsène and Arsenal. We invested our hopes on the Walcott’s of this world when somebody like Gnabry was already showing he had ability whilst at Arsenal. The club should have moved heaven and earth to tie him down before summer and we probably would already have a potential solution in one of those forward roles if we had’ve done. People talk about Arsène’s ability to grow and develop players, but this one could be one of the worst ‘one that got away’ players we’ve seen in the Wenger era. 

Still, at least Theo’s still at the club, adding value through….and….and also…

And it’s not just in attacking positions that we’re pointing a gun to our own heads, with Szczesny sounding like he’ll be a Juve player next season. Again, if that happens, you have to look at the shambles of an administration run at the club. We have an ageing Petr Cech and a Wojciech who is an Arsenal fan and who would probably have signed a deal last summer if we’d have offered him one, but our own inability to be decisive when it’s clear that a player has turned his fortunes around, is far too self evident. We’ll end up with a nominal fee and the need to find a world class ‘keeper in a year’s time when one was developing whilst on our books but out on loan.

Only at Arsenal, eh?