Welp, there’s still no Gabriel Jesus news, as I tap away this Saturday morning. However as my mate Steve said on our WhatsApp group yesterday when we were talking about the delay, I suspect the club was holding off having seen the Scum announce Richarlison. From our perspective we clearly get the better deal; £15million less for a guy who has won competitions and is more versatile with more goal contributions than his national compatriot. Scum fans will argue that they are buying him to work in rotation, but if they’re buying players for £60million in rotation then I’m ok with that. Like us, they don’t have an infinite pot of cash and just like how I wasn’t sure why we were spending £50million on a rotation option like Raphinha, they’ve gone and done it with the divey little pr*ck Richarlison. Hopefully he fails miserably.
The last thing I want to do is dedicate any time on the blog to talk about a small club like those little noisy neighbours of ours, but it is mainly because of that point that I suspect the club wants its own bit of PR and doesn’t want to have those inevitable comparisons by announce Gabriel Jesus on the same day they announce that Brazilian diver. So I suspect at some day today we’ll get some kind of announcement that we have our man. Unless of course, as Steve also pointed out on Twitter, they want to tie it in the #TheLordsDay and announce tomorrow. But even that might be dragging it out a bit.
So let’s talk about stuff we do know has happened. Like how Matteo Guendouzi finally made his move to Marseille permanent yesterday with the club confirming the deal. Guendouzi has been long gone for a while now so whilst it in itself is not exactly particularly interesting to me, the question over the fee is interesting. Not the amount itself, as I think all in it was a rather paltry £10million, but more when Arsenal have accounted for it. The deal was basically done last summer when clubs were desperate for cash, so would Arsenal have ‘accrued’ for the deal to show that they have the receipts for a £10million footballer an therefore can do some creative accounting? Or did they just accept the big loss with no incomings last summer and this summer they are cashing in on all the players they can?
Obviously from our perspective you hope that it’s the latter. Why should we care though? Well, this goes back to that point I mention at the top of the blog; we too don’t have infinite resources. We do not have the sportswashed billions of a nations state. So we have to make our money up elsewhere and a big chunk of that is selling players. If you’re taking £10million for Guendouzi this summer, it’s £10million the club can re-invest. I think I’ve already done a couple of blogs on players leaving and how much we can fetch, but if you get £60million for Guendouzi, Torreira, Maitland-Niles, Ballard, Leno, maybe Holding (if we get a left sided player), Pablo Mari, Hector Bellerin, then you’re talking about a decent amount of money being put in to the ‘what we can spend’ pot. And £60million for all of those players doesn’t feel unrealistic to me. It works out rough £8.5million for each player. Some might go for more, some for less, but ultimately it feels gettable.
Which is what Richard Garlick and Edu need to be also working on. It’s all very well looking at incomings, but the reason we have ‘missed out’ on Raphinha and might ‘miss out’ on Lisandro Martinez, is because we have our budget and we can’t go beyond it. I bet that budget is predicated on the requirement to get money for those players and as such then it’s just the £9million for Guendouzi we’ve raked in (£1million less because I think that was a loan fee we got for the player last season that the club would certainly have put in to last seasons accounts).
On the Lisandro Martinez stuff, it sounds like United are getting hot over him and if that’s the case then it’s a shame, as he’d have been a decent signing for us. But again, let’s not get too caught up in it. What we’ve seen is Arsenal are willing to spend and spend now and if we can go after target number two then so be it. Regardless of what happens, think about that first game of the season against Crystal Palace. Is Martinez getting in ahead of Tierney? Gabriel? Thomas Partey? Nope. So we’ve got a very good player who will play some rotation. At United he might even be the same. So there’s no point in getting too stressed over rotation options. Just find me somebody similar to Martinez and I’m good with it. And there will be plenty of them out there so that’s a-ok with me.
The other news that had Arsenal fans worried for a few minutes was Fabio Vieira in a protective boot, but as we found out from his social media account within the same day of the first pictures appearing, it was merely a precaution and he’ll be reporting for duty with the team next week. So let’s leave him in the very swanky Sopwell House (I was there to take the wife for a spa day in May – very nice indeed) and get him rested up and happy for pre season with his new teammates. It’s funny though because all of the excitement at this time of the year very quickly switches. He was a bolt out of the blue signing, for whom none of us knew about and have subsequently started looking more closely at, to get very excited we’ve got him (and apparently at a cheap price if you believe some of the Portuguese press) but because it was so swift and we are looking at other players already, it feels a bit like some of us have forgotten about him already. He will add quality and depth in our attacking options and that is a really good thing for us. I’m excited to see what he can do.
And I’m excited for pre season to start. Hope you are too.
That’s me done for the day. The Management is off to Pride so it’s a bit of work and a bit of golf for me.
Catch you all tomorrow.