Morning folks and welcome to the day after transfer deadline day. We got through it. Phew.
Let’s start with the main bit of news that only emerged on Monday and was done by Tuesday. Jorginho joins The Arsenal for something around £12million. I’ve been saying on social media that I don’t completely hate this deal providing that the terms are right and it seems that Arsenal have managed to do this in a way that benefits the club in the short term. Supposedly it’s £10million plus £2million in add on’s, which include Champions League qualification and winning the Premier League. That’s exactly the sort of add ons that make sense; if Arsenal win the league it may be because Jorginho has played a part in getting us over the line, in which case incentivising on that basis makes sense. And I think that is where Arsenal’s head is at in terms of this signing, i.e:
“We need an experienced, Prem-ready midfielder who can be a rotation option if Party breaks down.”
That is Jorginho. He’s a guy who will sit at the base of our midfield, have an impact from a maintaining of possession and keeping things ticking over point of view, who doesn’t have pace but does have experience and knowhow of this league and who is an upgrade on Mo Elneny from a technical point of view. That’s what we have to see this deal as: A Mo Elneny upgrade. When you think about it like that it becomes a little more palatable. Arteta gets his man who he’s wanted for a few years too.
And as I said on my blog on Monday, the length of the deal also ensures that the world know this is a short term solution. An 18-month deal means that we can go for our main targets in the summer and if we find ourselves in a situation where Jorginho has barely played next season then he can run down his contract and look for another move. I also think that for him it makes sense too, because he’s now in a squad fighting for a title (for now) and that should hopefully be in the Champions League next season. And I wonder if – were we in fifth or sixth – whether he’d have been as keen to join for just 18 months, or whether he and his agent would have moved to give themselves a bigger contract length to give him more security? If we’d have been a little further down the table he might have seen this as a cushy number like so many of his predecessors did, but he’s joining a competitive squad and that kind of fire and drive in the belly may have had him saying “do you know what, screw the longer deal, because this looks like a good thing that’s going on here, so I’ll take what I’m offered”. That’s what I’m hoping for anyway.
And suddenly you start to look at the core of 16 – 17 players and it feels a little deeper than it was at the end of December. We can all reel off the first XI for sure, but our bench will now include:
- Fabio Vieira
That’s a collective of pretty good bench options and certainly sets us up well for the second half of the season. We may not want to HAVE to rely on those players for any extended period of time, but their quality is sufficient that one or two games, or if we need to rotate players in and out, could mean that we can do it and hopefully not see the technical level dip. Fingers crossed. I’m looking at games like Brentford at home just before we play City in two weeks time, as a game where maybe Arteta brings in a Trossard, or gives 30 minutes to Fabio Vieira for Saka, depending on the game state. There’s also the Europa League games and depending on which opposition we get, there’s opportunity for rotation there too.
It’s all rather positive in terms of Arsenal’s options now and I look forward to getting back to getting stressed about the football rather than the transfer window for the next four months.
It ended up being an eventful one at The Arsenal in terms of outgoings too, with a host of players going out – including Sambi Lokonga to Palace – and I really hope he gets game time and it works out for him. If he plays plenty of football and does well, then it will be good for all parties. For him because he’ll have regained confidence, for Palace because the loan move will have worked out well, for Arsenal because regardless of what happens next in his career, it should be beneficial for us. If he is good at Palace then we’ll get a player back who might be in better shape to play in the first team next season. But if his future lies away from Arsenal, then we should be able to recoup a proper fee for him. There’s been lots of talk about Arsenal’s ‘derisory’ £60million Caicedo bid, but Monaco supposedly asking if they can take Sambi for €8million is a bit of a joke for a player we forked out £17.5million on a couple of seasons ago.
The other news on loans were mainly around some of the youth players, but at least we’ve also managed to get shot of Cedric and his £100k-per-week wages. That’ll save us a fair bit of cash for a few months and it means I don’t live in fear of him coming on at any stage for the rest of the season. Hopefully we can offload in the summer and be done with what seems a dodgier transfer the more you look at it.
Right, I’ll leave that there for the day, I think. You guys have a good one and I’ll see thee in the morrow.
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