Morning all, hope you’re all fine and dandy and feeling grand, on this Tuesday before the start of the new season?
For me it’s a weird one because I’m travelling in on the tube for the first time in six months and I’m already surrounded by a bunch of ‘orrible school kids, one of which has decided that he’s too ‘hard’ for a face mask. Eugh.
Still, that’s not nearly as confusing and irritating as trying to work out just who Arsenal are going to cash in on this transfer window, because we either have no interest or keep making U-turns on those players who are expected to leave.
Like Rob Holding, who it has emerged Arteta has decided will stay at the club – at least for the foreseeable future – after Arsenal put his proposed move to Newcastle on hold for now.
I don’t know if that’s because there is somebody else being shunted out the door or not but it sounds weird that of all the positions we can afford to lose a player this season, we haven’t moved on any of those clearly surplus to requirements. I know the Holding deal would have been a loan move, but that still includes a loan fee, wages paid for and at least one less name with which there should probably be little room for given the arrival of Saliba and Gabriel.
Of course there could be some kind of jiggery pokery going on with regards to the home grown rule quota, but Arsenal need to be able to get some players out the door soon because the situation we find ourselves in with a week to go until the season starts is a massively bloated squad that is still lacking in quality.
The only noises that appear to look to have a conclusion – assuming clubs pay the money – is that Emi Martinez is being courted by Aston Villa. This is a difficult one because what we saw during Project Restart was a ‘keeper who has really come into his own, looked fantastic, every bit the class Premier League goalie many at Arsenal already thought he was. But he’s done it over a sustained period of time and now Villa are sniffing. Supposedly they’ve bid £15million and then have made an approach closer to our £20million valuation. I can’t be the only one a little bit astounded that Villa – who supposedly want something like £80million for Grealish – are quibbling over a couple of million. At the risk of sounding like a broken record here, let’s not forget that Bournemouth’s Ramsdale – inferior to Emi based on what I’ve seen – went to Sheffield United for £18million. So to my mind even £20million seems low.
If Martinez moves on and establishes himself at another club he’ll be Argentina’s next number one for sure. That’s an international ‘keeper and Villa are penny pinching? I hope if these rumours are true then what ever Villa bid we should whack a whopping ‘percentage of next sale’ to the deal, because I guarantee that within 18 months there will be bigger clubs interested. So if we chuck a 25% sell on fee, we could potentially retrospectively get what he should be worth if he’s sold for £20million within this window.
Again though, it’s not exactly a position that we’re desperate to offload; it’s merely that it’s an asset that we think we can get decent money for.
It’s the same for Torreira which, if the rumours that Fiorentina are now backing away from a €30million deal are true, then I for one am more than happy enough that we’ve stood firm on this one. Again we have ourselves a Uruguayan international, a guy who has proven what a talent he is in Italy and whilst his star hasn’t quite shone as brightly as when he was making a name for himself at Sampdoria, I wouldn’t say his value has diminished. We paid £25million for him, which is €27million, and we’re asking for €30million. Hardly unrealistic, is it?
I’ve always thought there was a player in there when it comes to Torreira and if/when he goes, he’ll star for his next Italian club, so why should we let that go on the cheap?
I think Arsenal are waiting until towards the end of the window. Feels like that anyway. Teams will get desperate and they’ll know they need to pay the cash over, whether that’s a loan fee then money at the end, or in instalments like we did with Pepe, the important thing for the accounting books is that the book value of the player is secured and that’s my uneducated ‘gut feel’ of what’s happening at the moment.
Will things change after the football has kicked off again? Maybe. Maybe when teams have had a couple of matches they’ll know they need to move on players to improve their side, but we’re also in that boat and with the rough start that we’ve got, we might also be in the same position as the clubs we want to sell i.e. we end up paying exactly what Atletico Madrid want for Partey, for example.
Lots of chess moves are always played by clubs during transfer windows. In chess you haven’t finished your move until you’ve taken your hand off of your playing piece. It just feels like that’s exactly what’s happening here with us too. We’ve made a potential move, but aren’t quite sure, so have moved our piece back into the original position.
You gotta take your turn at some stage though. Let’s hope it’s soon for Arsenal.
Catch y’all tomorrow.