There’s nothing really going on that’s any different today in the Arsenal world, unfortunately. Everything feels very ‘samey’ if I’m honest.
Tielemans is still rumbling around as a rumour.
Nothing new on Lisandro Martinez.
Sergei Milinkovic-Savic is still bubbling away.
I mean, there are nuances in which journos are trying to keep their news ticking along, like saying that Tielemans is ready, willing and able to sign and that it is only The Arsenal that he wants. I listened to the Arsenal Vision podcast this morning as I went for my run and they were talking about this, saying how they thought the deal feels like it’s ‘done’ but we just need to put the final yards in at some point in the summer. Tim mentioned that he thought that the club might have a budget and they know exactly what they need to do to get Tielemans, so they’re focusing on other things because perhaps they don’t know exactly what it takes to get Martinez from Ajax, for example. That would make sense to me. If we know that £25million is ringfenced for Tielemans and we just need to pull the trigger, then you need to see what other players you can get in with what is left over.
I do think the Tielemans stuff feels very similar to last summer with Ramsdale and White too. There have been rumours with Newcastle and I think Man United, but the reality is that Arsenal have been the ones super-heavily linked to the player and have coveted the player for so long. And if he’s declared that as his preference then it’s just a case of getting the timing right. Last summer we were after Ramsdale and White for a lot of the summer. We eventually got them and they came in and did excellent. If we can replicate the formula with the Belgian then that’d be a-ok with me.
But it all feels rather quiet to me so perhaps there are things happening in the background.
The Martinez stuff seems to have gone quiet. Last weekend apparently we send officials to Amsterdam to try to convince the Dutch champions and the player himself that we were the ones to choose. I haven’t really seen or read anything since so I suspect those meetings have happened and that all parties are just keeping it hush-hush for now. I’m less fussed on this one if I’m honest. We need a left back for when Tierney inevitably breaks down, but I feel like I’m one of the few people who’d still be willing to give Tavares a shot this season. He was raw last season, he made mistakes, but there was the bones of a good player that I saw at times last season. Let’s also not forget that he is still so early in his career. He made 22 appearances in the Premier League for us last season. Before we signed him he’d only played a total of 25 games in the Portuguese league. The jump from that division to the Premier League is big, but for a player who had not really established himself in Portugal to come and join us and play that many times? I still say that there is something in there and if he was the deputy next season I wouldn’t get too angry. Let’s give the lad a chance.
The other one – Sergei Milinkovic-Savic – still feels a little too ‘Italiany’ in its origin for me to be too invested in it. All we’re hearing now is that this price quoted for the player is creeping up. In classic “ooh, a Premier League Team might be interested, let’s add 25% to our asking price” fashion, the more it creeps up for a guy who is 27, the more I drift away in terms of interest. Not because I wouldn’t like or want the player, but more that it becomes too prohibitive and if we’re talking about this guy who hasn’t played a minute in English football, versus Tielemans, who would be half the price and has been a success for a few years now, well that feels like a no brainer to me.
Perhaps it’s just about keeping the options open. Transfers are a murky business and Arsenal could think they have everything sorted with Leicester, only for the Foxes to suddenly change their mind and decide they want an extra £10million. If Arsenal are shown to be hell bent on Tielemans and have no other options, then Leicester will of course chance their arm – we’d want to do the same (although we know we never would because we never get that lucky in selling players). But if Arsenal are seen to be looking at other options then Leicester – assuming they want to capitalise and sell to ensure they get their money on the player – will perhaps think twice about a u-turn on the mooted fee.
Like I say, transfers are a murky business, an ugly one for sure. I guess that’s why I was so happy and excited to see we might be moving quickly in the market. Get your deals done, then sit back and watch the madness unfold, as you peaceful go about your pre season plans.
That’s it from me for today. No point speculating over anything else. Might not be back tomorrow as I have a work evening do tonight and it could be a bit booze-filled, so I’ll make my excuses now in case I’m too hungover to type tomorrow 😉
Catch you soon.