Happy Tuesday folks. Hope we’re all good?

It starts to get spicy in the Euro’s now, with the two semi finals on tonight and whilst I’m pretty sure Spain will win, seeing Big Bill Saliba happy and in to the final would be nice.

“See William? You don’t NEED to go to Madrid at all in your career. You can achieve your dreams at The Arsenal”

I think also if England do actually stand a chance of winning the thing, it’s probably more likely to come against the French than the Spanish. I get that David Raya is in the Spain squad too, but he doesn’t really play and they also have Rodri and Cucurella, so I’m fully invested in seeing the French progress tonight.

Whatever happens though, there will be at least some form of Arsenal representation at the weekend and that’s nice. And if we go and buy that Merino chap too, we’ll have had it be proxy anyway.

I suppose if I put my purely Arsenal lens on, the best final to have would probably be Spain versus the Netherlands. If France are out tonight then Saliba can head off for a two week rest before re-joining with the Arsenal squad for pre season by 29th July because thankfully there is no third/fourth placed pointless game. That will have given him two-and-a-half week’s of rest and recuperation, plus it means that there is a solid 20 days to have him in training before we kick off against Wolves on 17th August. Which is a-ok for me.

On the other side of the draw from an Arsenal perspective we have Ramsdale, Rice and Saka who are all in the squad for England, whereas with the Netherlands it’s got a chunk of Liverpool and City players, so if they were to get through at the expense of the English, then we get our lads to essentially have the same amount of time off as Saliba would if he went out. But I guess given I was born and raised in this country, I naturally have the preference for England to go all of the way and get to the final. The weather has been crap this summer but at least England have gone beyond a group stage knockout to keep the country’s spirits up. And it is kinda nice to see people coming together for a singular level of support; there’s so much division in this country already through things like politics, football teams, etc, that it’s good to have everyone routing in one direction for a change.

I guess all of this pre-amble is me saying that regardless of the results of both games today and tomorrow, hopefully by the weekend I’ll very much have a ‘that was a win-win’ mentality about me.

It will also mean that from Monday next week we go back to going way over the top on the transfer situation. This tournament is a welcome distraction from the inevitability of the transfer window, but at least before we know it there will be friendly matches just a couple of weeks after the Euro’s.

The Copa America draws to a conclusion too, which is good, because it means our American players will be getting back. The big ones are obviously the Brazilians but mercifully, they got themselves knocked out on pens on Sunday, so whilst they’ll all be sad this week, they can have an extra couple of week’s off and hopefully then also be back with plenty of time before the season starts. Perhaps in a way it’s better that we’re not in the Community Shield this season; I do enjoy a sojourn to Wembley, but having to call players back an extra week because of a showpiece curtain raiser feels like something we can do without. We did it last season, it was fun, let’s now just use this time to have a little more experimentation when we welcome Granit Xhaka back on 11th August instead, shall we?

There’s not really a lot of other transfer stuff going on, so I think I’ll finish off with a localised story here in London that I saw in FourFourTwo this morning. Apparently we’re cracking down even more on touts and those who haven’t used their season ticket this season and there have already been 54 people who haven’t been able to renew their season ticket. Good. It’s hard enough as it is to get tickets to games right now, so the idea of people not taking their tickets up and leaving empty seats is criminal. Now to be fair, in the lower tiers where I sit, you rarely see that, but even for games like the Scum at home or the last game of the season just gone against Everton, I still saw one or two seats in the upper tiers that weren’t taken up. There will have been people on that final day who would have done anything to be inside the ground and I’m pretty sure there were more than 60,000 people milling outside the Emirates on that final match day, yet we still saw a few red patches where nobody took up the seat. Anything Arsenal can do to avid that absolutely gets my vote. Good on the club for taking these initiatives. Let’s hope we see more proactiveness as the new season kicks in.

And on that note I’ll pause for today and say ‘cheerio’ and ‘see you tomorrow’.

Have yourselves a wonderful Tuesday.