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Arsenal’s Scary Reliance on the Window 

There was a time when I could care less about the transfer window. So I am a bit old school when it comes to transfers.

Admittedly, I did not become a passionate die-hard Arsenal football fan until the Invincibles. That was the season I followed every single match. I had my heart in my mouth during that famous Portsmouth game, the one where we dodged a bullet.

So I don’t remember the transfer window before that season. Do you? I don’t blame you nor do I blame myself for this lack of awareness. This is because the current transfer window arrangements started in 2002/03, the season before the Invincibles. You can check this link for a bit of history lesson – https://www.premierleague.com/news/60258.

Since then, the transfer window has increasingly taken on more relevance, more importance and more media bandwidth than the football itself. First it was the Sky Transfer Deadline Day show with that muppet in yellow tie who now insults our eardrums with his rubbish on Talkshite and now it is the fans, the blogs, he media and even footballers and club management.

I don’t blame the media. They need to eat. They and the click bait social media accounts need to eat. They need to create baseless rumors so that the flock of online sheep can click on their links and convert their eyeball and traffic into pennies and ultimately pounds.

Blame the fans

I blame the fans who think winning the transfer window is a thing. Where are the Manchester United fans who won the transfer window four seasons ago when Pogba rejoined for a king’s ransom? When Matic joined to unlock Pogba? When Scamlexis Sanchez joined for 1-gazillion pounds a week?

Now that they have turned Harry frigging Maguire into the world’s most expensive defender, watch them dance in the buff on social media about winning the transfer window and how Maguire will be Ole’s partner on the wheels of the United’s van that is properly stuck in quicksand.

Abolish the transfer window

Personally, I would rather the transfer window be abolished. Players who play for a club should be from their academy or development squad. Yes, Yes, Yes. This is like going back to the days of homing pigeons, Morse code and telegrams but doing this will take us back to a time when football was cheaper and affordable for everybody. Not now when a player barely out of diapers is sold for £30m.

Regrettably and sadly it kills me to note that Tottenham didn’t sign a player last season but they hobbled over the now gigantic Top 4 Trophy line and lost shamefully to the other team in the lesser European Cup final (If you happen to think otherwise– keep your disagreement to yourself). Along the line they promoted a few players from the academy. No wonder they have the audacity to brag…but the Audi Cup is now a trophy; that lot can never help themselves. Ridiculous.

A team like Crystal Palace gave someone like Aaron Wan Bissaka a break over two seasons (?) and have now sold him for £50m.

Spending big and performing badly

Now to my team, Arsenal. We were very poor the season before last. The worst season ever in all of Arsene Wenger’s illustrious career as a manager. Arsenal spent serious money in the transfer window plus the club had a full season out of Pierre Emerick Aubameyang and I dare say the end of the season left a worse taste in the mouth than the previous.

The two losses at the start of the season were expected although the Chelsea match represented a missed opportunity. To have gone on the run we did and then throw it away and crumble like a group without a single fight in them was painful. The good transfer window we had last season proved to be of no use.

Now the signing of a few players especially Pepe has Arsenal fans in Seventh Heaven. I have seen several stomach churning comments on social media about Arsenal and its fans winning the transfer window.  As an Arsenal fan I want it end well but I worry. I worry deeply.

Relying on hope and a prayer

If Arsenal continue to play with 2, 3, 4 players without defensive duties in the Premier League, we will get suckered by many teams. In my estimation and with Pepe’s arrival, we will have 3 of the best front 3 money can buy anywhere, if these front 3 don’t do any grunt work for the defense, we are on a hope and a prayer.  That hope and a prayer we have always relied on, the same one where one loose ball dissects our midfield and defence and the opposing player scores a goal against the run of play.

I don’t know 1% of what Unai Emery knows as a football person. I can’t hold a candle to Vishai, Raul and Edu. I hope they know what they are doing and I wish them well. But I am scared. I hope they have a plan and the plan works lest the sheep who like winning the transfer window turn on them like a woman scorned.

7 Comments

  1. For me, Baba absolutely nailed this one. It is scary how over the last three years Arsenal have come to rely on transfers but the football has gotten worse. While we mocked Spurs for not making a single signing last summer, they made it to the top-4 while promoting youths from their academy. But our fans were in an uproar, demonized Arsene Wenger for making Cech his single signing in 2015, yet we came 2nd in the League. Like Baba, I put the blame entirely on our fans starting with our biggest bloggers, top twitter accounts, podcasters and YouTubers. The fanbase is ecstatic about Pepe and, god forbid, at the prospect of Sanllehi helping out his companeros at Barca by taking the wasteful selfish, Coutinho off their hands and lashing him unto Arsenal. Its worse than relying on a hope and a prayer.

    Reply
  2. “If Arsenal continue to play with 2, 3, 4 players without defensive duties…”

    That’s pretty harsh on Guendouzi haha just kidding. Yikes!

    Oh god. One more season of Emery.

    Thanks Baba. This is a concise and accurate summary and reference for all Arsenal and other football fans.

    Looking at the Woodward template up at the Damned Utd we shouldn’t forget that transfers of managers, buying out of contracts, can be just as much “fun” as the transfers of players, for the Football Relations gurus that all kids dream of becoming (OK. only the kids that were **** at football! Hehe).

    “Football’s a Dirty Business”
    The self inflated Billy Big Bollocks Blagger felt he needed to inform the fans of a club that sacked GG. Why do they act with such a lack of class and quality?

    Oh.
    I $ee.

    Reply
  3. > The PR consultants are calling for statues of Raul. They won’t turn on him or the others.

    For spending £300M since he arrived at the club. More or less.

    It’s a simple equation really.

    Reply
  4. The difference with Utd is that Utd fans who didn’t like the Glazers just left and found their own club.

    At AFC the Football Experts hedged all their bets on Raul rather then just enjoying the football, non-league or otherwise.

    That is what happened.

    Therefore a large number the fans left supporting Utd. are those who enjoy the Woodward and Glazer show over the footy on the pitch. Signings and presentations as they take up less time and need less attention then an actual football match.

    Sure there are passionate Utd fans who love their club, but there’s a lot less of them then there were. and the club balanced their accounts to take that all into consideration.

    Reply
    • Fins: It is sad really what we have become. Even Wenger during his last year had to bow to the pressure (from Josh or Ivan?) to rebuild the team relying exclusively on the transfer market. He was even willing to pay £80-90 million for Lemar from Monaco; based on his performances to date for Atleti we dodged a major bullet there. The biggest irony is that Poch and Levy borrowed a leaf out of Wenger’s template and last year made zero signings; instead relying on a tight, familiar, motivated, long-established group of players enhanced by a few youths to make the champions league final and to come 3rd in the League. Meanwhile our big bloggers, top tweeters, podcasters and YouTubers are giddy at the prospect of another Barca failure being transferred to our club. Wasn’t Scamlexis Sanchez proof enough we need to be careful about whom we sign?

      Reply
  5. A great piece again Baba, the fact that people crow their asses off about winning the transfer window shows how phoney things have got. Thanks for keeping us down to earth.

    fins @1.50pm, lol! Keep posting that one up here and PA!

    Reply

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