Morning peeps, hope you’re holding up well, as always.

Another week has passed us by and here we are for another Saturday, sans The Arsenal, but at least we have each other, am I right?

We also have the odd bit of slim pickings to choose from on an Arsenal news front. My Twitter feed exploded yesterday with the news that we’d signed some nippy winger from Norway on a free transfer. Apparently we’ve gone and grabbed ourselves George Lewis from…erm…

“Fram Larvik”?

Is that a club or an old Estonian landlady?

I’ve played my fair bit of Championship Manager and Football Manager in my time, but even that club escapes me. And if you read the Evening Standard the youngster has been training with Solihull United.

This has the whiff of a Cohen Brammall about it. And we all know where that went. The player signed, people asked questions, he never got near the first team and now plies his trade at Colchester United.

Of course we can’t plot the course of any footballer but if you ask me this is hardly one of those stories I’d look to be making major broadsheet and tabloid news reels. And yet here we are. Everyone’s picking up on it and that’s most likely because there’s bugger all else on at the moment. We’re all just waiting from fresh and juicy #content to sink our teeth in to, but we all know that it’s just under three weeks away, so everyone’s trying desperately to get over this last hurdle of no football and any old transfer bluster will do.

I don’t know whether it’s age or not, but the older I get, the less I worry about these young players coming through the ranks because, in reality, very few actually go on to make a meaningful impact. We’ve all talked about the exciting crop of youngsters we’ve got but Maitland-Niles looks like he’s fading from first team view, Willock tailed off just before the season paused, whilst others like Smith-Rowe are on loan and therefore it’s difficult to work out if they’ll ever make it.

I mean think about it – when was the last time we had a home grown player who played regularly and was a real fans favourite? My first thought was Jack Wilshere but after his breakthrough season he was injury prone and whilst we all loved him, he never quite made that massive step up. Before that you’re talking about Cesc and then before him it was Cashley Cole. So in just about 20 years i’ve been able to pluck out three from my head. And one of them was nabbed from La Masia so that one doesn’t feel as ‘home grown’ as it possibly should. The same goes with Hector at the moment. So we’re talking four in 20 years. One every five years.

I’m not trying to ‘do down’ the young players we have. I’d be thrilled to see them all make leaps and bounds and start making meaningful contributions, but it’s going to take a lot for us to be able to look at this crop of players and see a side capable of challenging for the top honours in the immediate future. 

I know, I’ve woken up in a cynical mood today, but I’m just trying to manage my own personal expectations in my head this morning. I end up investing too much emotional desire into seeing these players succeed when they’re home grown – like you do too I’ll bet – and I don’t want to be getting my hopes up too much at such an early stage.

It’s why these next ten games we have to play – plus the FA Cup – could wind up being quite useful in terms of those young players because we could see more of them, see how they get on under Tricky Micky, then see if we can have a few ready made first teamers when the next season comes around. Whenever thay may be of course.

The only other bit of news I’ve read today that might be worth commenting on is Lucas Torreira again iun the news talking about one day wanting to play for Boca Juniors. The article in itself isn’t really any slight on Arsenal or talking about how he wants to move back to Italy or anything like that, but the amount of time he’s in the news talking about a potential move – either him or his agent – is getting on my wick a bit and I’m starting to get the hump with all of the nonsense we hear from him. He’s a good player, I love seeing him in the middle of the park for us, but there comes a time when it starts to get a bit tiresome and I’m sure the more stories like this get leaked to the press, the more we’ll start to see Arsenal feel the same as well, with the only inevitable conclusion being that we need to get him off the books. 

Whether that’s this summer or next summer who knows, but at his age, his position and his clear ability, if Arsenal did move him on then surely they’d want plenty of cash or one heck of an attractive deal to make it happen. Like I say though, I’d be surprised if it was this summer. 

That’s pretty much it for today. Have a good one. It’s a sunny one in London today so I’m off for a run and to scowl at all the dickheads going into parks and not socially distancing.

Catch y’all tomorrow.