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No Jesus or Martinelli, and Havertz up front instead of Nketiah. Kiwior at left back with Ramsdale making a welcome return between the sticks.

And in the second minute Ramsdale shows his mettle with a brilliant ball right over the defence and into the path of Nelson who really should do better than round the keeper and hit the side netting. The shape of things to come, unfortunately.

Arsenal have started really well, playing with the verve and speed of last season and the 5th minute sees a good attack with Saka cutting in and Odegaard should shoot but doesn’t.  More foreshadowing of the rest of the first half.

11 mins and Arsenal can’t buy a goal. Saka robs a defender and passes to Havertz who cuts back on the by line to Nelson whose shot is well blocked. The ricochet falls to Odegaard who thunders against the cross bar on the return and the chance fades.  Good blocking from Liverpool and very close indeed.

On 21 minutes Liverpool break well from deep with a good ball by Alexander Arnold leading to a cross knocked out for corner by White. The resulting corner is well delivered with Nunez – close to unmarked – heading wide.  The first meaningful attack from Liverpool and we are perhaps fortunate not to concede. Certainly, a better striker would have made more of it.  Another theme of the game…

Arsenal are still pushing forward and the pressing, movement and speed are all very impressive. The 26th minute sees super movement from Saka who moves the ball out to Nelson, who passes back to Saka, with the resulting shot being scuffed rather. Impressive football all the same.

On 29 Arsenal rob the Scousers and the ball falls to Havertz, central on the edge of the box. Havertz is a player who, at times, seemingly has the ability to speed up rather than slow down time and the chance is gone.  Very poor and not for the last time today, either…

On 37 the ball comes out to White on the edge of the Liverpool box who connects perfectly and hammers a shot which the keeper saves well to push over for a corner.  From the resulting Saka corner, Havertz has a header from around 6 feet which he puts wide.  It gives me no pleasure at all to say it, but he looks no more of a goal scorer for Arsenal than he did for Chelsea.

On 43 Havertz again dithers in front of goal when Nelson intercepts brilliantly as Liverpool try to play out from the back and the ball falls for Havertz who mis-controls and shoots tamely yet again at the keeper.  Just before half time, in response Alexander-Arnold bangs the bar with a fierce drive from the edge of the box. Half time is called and we really ought to have scored a couple.  The poor performances of the last 2 games look to be in the past as we are playing with a snap last seen away at Anfield before Christmas.

Half-Time – Arsenal 0 Liverpool 0

The manager makes no changes at half-time, and Arsenal start where we had left off with a super through ball from Saliba freeing up Saka who spins his defender in the box but can’t quite connect properly with his shot which ends up trickling through lamely to the keeper.   

It’s end-to-end stuff now, with both sides determined to avoid the replay. Liverpool chances appear to be classic Liverpool – on the break. We need to be careful. 

A free kick on 57 takes us close with Odegaard feinting to deliver into the box but putting in Havertz – who made a clever run off the defence — to cross and create a great chance which neither Gabriel nor Saka can quite get over.

This move is reprised a few minutes later when Nelson finds Havertz in a similar position – another excellent, intelligent run from Havertz, it must be said – whose cross, the keeper pushes on to Saka, who exhibits a marked lack of cool and knocks out for a goal kick.

On 62 Arteta subs Nelson for Martinelli. Nelson has been really good. But perhaps a smart move to have Martinelli running at a tiring defence.  Indeed, in the first 5 minutes after he came on Martinelli slaughters Alexander-Arnold and Konate. He blots his copy book, though with a corner reminiscent of end days Ozil: fired in knee height to the first defender.

By 70 minutes, personally I think it is clear that we would benefit from some further substitutions.  We have ESR, Trossard and Nketiah on the bench.  Liverpool by this point are taking over. Our chances and possession are diminishing, Liverpool look re-vitalised with a couple of young subs – hmm, a lesson, perhaps? – and on 76 create probably the best chance to this point with Diaz twisting and getting a shot off from 10 yards, forcing a superb save from Ramsdale which he pushes round the post. From the resulting corner, the odious Jota hits the bar. 

Odegaard gives away a foul between the right-hand corner of our box and the touchline. Alexander-Arnold delivers well to the near post and Kiwior is unfortunate to connect and put into his own net. This has been coming. So has the substitution of Havertz. However, we have to wait until the 87th minute. This is way too late. Liverpool score again right at the end and the game is dead.

Final Score – Arsenal 0 Liverpool 2

This was a classic game of two halves. We should have had it sewn up by half time. Yet there is more to it than that.  Klopp out thought Arteta in the second half and, perhaps, Arteta outthought himself again, making poor substitutions, most of which were too late. We were ponderous in front of goal with shots taking too long to get off and when they came, almost without exception, being poorly hit.  On the other hand, the performance was much better than the dross we served up against West Ham and Fulham and the approach play, particularly in the first half, was crisp and quick.  There really is no need to throw out the baby with the bathwater. More quality in front of goal kills this off. 

Personally, I would rather not see a knee-jerk reaction resulting in our buying an overpriced attacker in this window. We are still learning as a young team.  For me now, Arteta has to do some more introspection and see where the things which he has changed haven’t worked and that we are behind where we were last year. We don’t have any fixture congestion in the second half of the season as a result of today. We need to take the next 2 weeks break to recharge and go again. Arteta needs to look at those things which are not working. I would posit that among these are Raya, Havertz, and not using sufficiently well the squad depth offered by Nelson and Trossard in particular.


58 Drinks to “Arsenal vs. Liverpool, FA Cup: Storm Clouds and Silver Linings”

  1. 1
    Tasgooner says:

    I have to apologise but I am absolutely to blame for the last few results. That lairy away kit drew me in like a sweet sweet addictive compounds squared (the family have long accepted my illogical cravings and carefully position me in the kitchen at gatherings) so it arrived for Christmas, on it went and the shit hit the fan. Love my team, love my new look and now I’m sitting here feeling responsible for the goonerverse currently in meltdown – time for big shoulders (it says this in the how to improve yourself manual I also got for Christmas – do you see the theme?).

    Yup it’s been pretty ordinary but if your teams is creating 60+ opportunities across those matches they’re doing the right thing and fighting hard – and as BtM and Ned has pointed out leather will eventually meet plastic and lots. I love the cup but I’m OK with us being out – the squad that Arteta trusts is too thin. We’re almost there, and the innocent I am will always follow my team and my manager.

    Love your work in running Goonerholicsforever, both for Dave and to keep the community involved. Massive respects.

  2. 2
    Tasgooner says:

    And most importantly thank you CER for your great report

  3. 3
    ClockEndRider says:

    Good to see you, TG. Could you lend your self improvement manual to our forwards for a bit please?!

  4. 4
    TTG says:

    Very sane and balanced report CER and extremely well-described . A day with freezing cold, no Piccadilly line after the game and we go out of the cup . Happy New Year !
    This was a much better performance and you outline the key concerns well except that we haven’t got a left back fit for purpose available at the moment . Kiwior does not impress and has limited pace but it’s not his position .
    Without a proper chance taker it’s hard to improve results but it’s hard to do business in January . Loan deals might add some missing quality but at least today the movement was good. Saka was very lacking in confidence though. It was ironic that such a beautiful pass should come from a keeper who is considered weaker with his feet than Raya !
    One final observation . When I watch on telly they always quote our set piece stats and laud them. When I go I see a team who can’t take or defend corners . Lies, damn lies and statistics?

  5. 5
    BtM says:

    Word perfect review of what I saw and the feelings the game inspired, CER – with one single exception. Please insert Emile Smith Rowe immediately ahead of Nelson in your final line.

    P.S. to Mikel (who I’m sure is an avid reader) please insert Emile Smith Rowe in your starting line up ahead of Kai Havertz in our next game. ESR runs beautifully with the ball and scores goals frequently irrespective of the difficulty of the chance. You know this of course, and I wonder if Emile has carelessly pissed in your Sangria on the occasion of your last summer barbecue, thereby putting himself on a wobbly peg? Also, you must have noticed that Aaron Ramsdale played splendidly yesterday, please take care not to do another Emi Martinez, you know what I’m saying.

  6. 6
    Bathgooner says:

    An objective and accurate match report, CER. Very much the game I endured.

    It was a rare opportunity for the bathlets and myself to visit TNHOF together being somewhat tarnished by the result. I must confess that our goalless first 10-15 minutes brought to mind the Cardiff FA Cup Final that we undeservedly lost to the Dippers and the longer we went without finishing one of the many chances we created, the more likely such an outcome felt. Our substitutions were far too late to change that narrative.

    Despite the result, the performance and silky football were light years from the turgid treacle-wading served up at the Cottage. If Ramsdale’s performance in this game doesn’t get him his place back then I don’t understand football.

    We need to shrug off this disappointment and get the show back on the road. We just need to find that ‘fox in the box’. I wonder what Frannie Jeffers is doing these days?

  7. 7
    BtM says:

    @6, Bath, remember when Arsene magicked Eduardo Silva (who?) out of the hat for three shillings and sixpence. We need much more of that kind of acquisition.

  8. 8
    Bathgooner says:

    Exactly that, BtM. I wonder whether Arsene now has, in his FIFA role, an even greater awareness where up and coming talent may be in the world and could give Edu a call.

  9. 9
    OsakaMatt says:

    Thanks CER, a good report that I mostly agree with though I thought Kai, like all our forwards yesterday, played some great stuff at times and I wouldn’t drop him.
    They all missed very presentable chances. Nelson impressed me too first half but talking of pissing in the sangria it seems Leo is also out of favor.

  10. 10
    Gunnersaurus Stunt Double says:

    Cheers CER. Excellent report, sensible conclusions that I’m on board with.

    ESR at 8 might well make a big difference, in the way that his Boxing Day introduction a few years back turned our season round. He makes great runs, takes chances and in unpredictable. He also plays with freedom. I think his presence might reinvigorate some of the other starters, who are all great players but seem to be stuck in a funk in front of goal.

    Havertz was very ponderous in front of goal yesterday. I don’t want to single him out when the whole team were (apart from Saka, who wasn’t ponderous, he was simply dreadful!) but he needs to sort this out. By contrast, he made some great runs and played some lovely passes. He does plenty of good things, but he needs to cut out the bad ones, especially to win fans over.

  11. 11
    Gunnersaurus Stunt Double says:

    Good to see Tasgooner in the bar. Have a drink on me, and for God’s sake stop wearing that kit, at least until we win again!

  12. 12
    Ollie says:

    Cheers, CER. I’m fully onboard your match report and conclusions (though we weren’t that shit againt West Ham, it was similar-ish for me, certainly the 10-15 first minutes against them had some great quality…bar the finishing of course).

    Baff at 6. I thought Ramsdale was great but…
    If Ramsdale’s performance in this game doesn’t get him his place back then I don’t understand football.
    …I’m afraid you know deep inside how this one will go. I’d be surprised if he’s back between the sticks in the League. But one can hope.
    Jeffers, eh!

  13. 13
    Ollie says:

    Exactly that about Havertz, GSD, I thought he was very good and terrible at the same time. Extremely frustrating.

  14. 14
    North Bank Ned says:

    Is it Tas’s kit or Saka’s Barnet? We haven’t won since Starboy had his hair tinted.

    An excellently clear-eyed match report, CER. We lost a game we should have had wrapped up by half-time because we failed to score, not because the Dippers were the better team. When it is the right-back who draws the only save in anger from the opposition keeper, you know form has abandoned the attackers big-time.

    I didn’t think Arteta was particularly outthought by Klopp in the second half. Klopp was more proactive in making tactical tweaks — and had to be given his team’s first-half performance — but, by and large, we coped. Their first goal came from a set piece and we still had chances to score. Where I do agree with you is that Arteta’s substitutions came far too late, particularly the response (or rather non-response) to Klopp’s 75th-minute changes. Putting players on in the 88th minute is what you do when you are defending a lead and want to chew up a couple of minutes, not when you are chasing an equaliser in a cup tie.

  15. 15
    Bathgooner says:

    Ollie @12, you are correct. I do indeed know. I don’t understand the situation at all though.

    You sum up my feelings about Havertz’s performance yesterday very nicely @13.

  16. 16
    Gunnersaurus Stunt Double says:

    Personally, I’d give Rambo his place back, but not because he was so outstanding in this game there is no other choice.

    He didn’t do very well for the first goal. He was flappy and out of position, leaving his goal wide open. And we lost the match 2-0. So I’d hardly use this match to claim such a massive performance from Ramsdale that he has to keep his place. He made a good save and his distribution was good. But he’s always done those things and it hasn’t been enough to get selected so far this season.

  17. 17
    Sancho Panza says:

    When we beat Palace 4 nil and the goals start flowing again we can all give up on the hope anyone new is joining this month.
    And thank goodness for that. Better to recruit in the Summer and not rush into anic buys. FFP means we have to work it out on the training field which is far more satisfying than doing it the 115 way. Up the Arsenal.

  18. 18
    Bathgooner says:

    There’s an excellent analysis in the Athletic (£) that suggests that our problem scoring is so often due to a poor final pass (often behind the intended recipient) that means that the purchase of a new striker would not materially change our scoring rate. History suggests that a panic buy in January rarely bears fruit and often queers the financial pitch for a better option in the following summer:


  19. 19
    TTG says:

    I hear everyone about a striker but we need to realise that half a season lies ahead and we MUST qualify for the CL again from a financial perspective . It will wreck our FFP position if we don’t . And we won’t be able to sign the top players if we are not in the CL.
    There are two reasons why we need a striker. One is the obvious one that you must get goals and we don’t get them in any quantity in big games . But we also need someone who changes the way teams defend against us. This is by using their physicality , their movement , their ability in the air ( Havertz jumps high but he missed a sitter yesterday ) and by affecting the position defenders take up. If the striker is fast they defend deep. If they aren’t they defend high and leave space in behind .
    Arsenal need a striker but because we’ve invested so much in Havertz we haven’t got the financial wriggle room to buy one . We’d get much more out of Jesus as well if he wasn’t playing centrally . But unless we sell several players in a month – and for realistic fees not giving them away – we can’t comply with FFP and it’s hard to structure enough deals in such a restricted period . And our squad looks thin especially with two away at tournaments and with long-term injuries .

  20. 20
    TTG says:

    It woukd be remiss not to mourn the death of Franz Beckenbauer who was a wonderful player and made a seamless switch from midfield to the back four ( actually more of a sweeper ). The last time I saw him live he was actually run ragged by an England team boasting Channon, Keegan and McDonald . On one occasion he rugby tackled Channon who had him on toast one on one .
    But most of his career was played at a very high level and he made the game look very easy and highly elegant .
    RIP The Kaiser

  21. 21
    North Bank Ned says:

    Very sad to learn of the death of Franz Beckenbauer. Truly one of the game’s greats. RIP.

  22. 22
    North Bank Ned says:

    TTG@19: We need to find or buy a way to score—no argument.

    As for the buy bit, my ground rules would be: 1. No January trolley dash just for the sake of getting in a striker (a loan for someone who would give a marginal improvement would just about be OK, providing there is an obligation to return him in the summer whence he came); 2. Only buy someone we would buy anyway in a summer window as a step-up, and then only at a sensible price (or as sensible as any transfer fee is these days); 3. Don’t take on any short-term financial commitments that will weigh heavily regarding FFP, and tie our hands over buying an elite striker in the summer.

    The whole matter may be moot anyway. It is rare for elite strikers to be available mid-season, and when they do appear on the market, it is usually at exorbitant prices. Unless Edu can unearth some overlooked hidden gem, our best bet may be to get one or two of our Academy forwards, several of whom are highly rated, breathing down Nketiah’s neck. If ever there was a time for Eddie to step up and prove his worth as a top Premiership striker, this is it. To my mind, he has been unimpressive lately, and no fox in the box like our Crozilian that Bath recalls.

  23. 23
    TTG says:

    Eminently sensible Ned I agree. The loan option might be fruitful especially if we could utilise some of our players in a swap loan deal if such a thing can be done – it may be a way of getting an idea of the potential of say Walters or ACD or Sousa

  24. 24
    Bathgooner says:

    Good ground rules, Ned.

  25. 25
    Countryman100 says:

    Interesting article in the Athletic on why we don’t need to buy a striker in the January window.


  26. 26
    Las says:

    Cheers CER,
    You expertly summarized the game I saw. Playing that well and earning nothing is somewhat sad. I think the frustration from the last three losses and the fatigue take their toll. Refreshing the team and finding the focus again must be a top priority. Nothing won and nothing was lost at this point of the season so we don’t need to panic.
    Buying an able central forward would be great but the chances are not.

  27. 27
    Countryman100 says:

    Cards on the table. I agree with the Athletic and don’t want a pro term striker in January. We need to strengthen our defence /midfield so I like the call of Onana from Everton. Because Partey can’t be depended on and we need to sell him in the summer. The front four will snap out of this slump in the second half. Tomi is fragile. Come on then disagree with me – with names!

  28. 28
    Countryman100 says:

    100% we go for a top line striker in the summer.

  29. 29
    Bathgooner says:

    C100 @27, sorry to disappoint you but I agree with you completely. We must not overpay for a Plan B striker in January but we must ensure we get a top drawer striker in the summer.

    The improvement in the performance on Sunday, compared to that at the Cottage, was in part due to the stability of the midfield with Jorginho allowing Rice to play on the front foot though sadly it didn’t (and couldn’t) improve our finishing. With Partey crocked/diplomatically absent, Onana would replicate the dynamic duo in the centre of the team that Rice’s purchase was intended to bring but that Jorginho’s legs can’t quite deliver. I’m all for that signing if we can make it happen within the financial rules.

    C100 @28, you clearly didn’t read ‘bathgooner @18’. However it’s an excellent article worth referring to twice!

  30. 30
    Countryman100 says:

    Sorry Bath, I’ve only just begun to dip my toe back into football after the disappointment of Sunday. No rudeness intended.

  31. 31
    TTG says:

    Two seasons ago the debate was stay with Lacazette or buy a striker and we tried for Vlahovic . We bought no one and finished fifth
    I agree that we shouldn’t buy an inferior striker but hope our director of Football might find an under the radar solution . If we can’t I agree we shouldn’t buy inferior players but it will mean we win nothing this season
    I also agree we need to supplement the midfield although Jorginho played well on Sunday

  32. 32
    Countryman100 says:

    You don’t ask for much TTG. Buy a top striker for three and four pence and sell our discards for £50m each. Ain’t going to happen my friend.

  33. 33
    TTG says:

    I like Giménez at Feyenoord who we could probably afford if we sell Nketiah. But I expect Edu has got tabs on him already and will know if he is as good as he looks . We got the summer window brilliantly right in some respects and very wrong in others. . When I hear our transfer priority is getting the cash to secure the transfer of Raya I weep silently . And we significantly overpaid for Havertz . That is £90 million that could have been
    much better spent .
    A rumour circulating tonight is that we have enquired about Benzema who like Henderson is not enamoured with life in Saudi . Is it worth a £10 million loan punt on him or is he past his sell by date ? Answers on a postcard . Apparently Arsene is advocating the deal is worth doing . Although I’m not sure he would have done it .

  34. 34
    North Bank Ned says:

    TTG@33: AW didn’t buy 30-somethings.

  35. 35
    OsakaMatt says:

    I wouldn’t buy Benzema with someone else’s money even Stan’s.

    And it’s hard to disagree with TTG @27 although I have some doubts
    about Onana as i heard he was quite inconsistent.
    I didn’t have anyone in particular in mind as I am not sure who is available but as long as it strengthens the squad I am fine. On the other hand I feel we can still win something this season even if we don’t buy. It doesn’t feel like seasons past where it’s hard to see what’s happening and we have to buy players like Ozil, Sanchez, Auba and hope their star power will somehow lift us up where we belong.

  36. 36
    Trev says:

    Excellent, CER – very nicely summed up and analysed.
    Sorry to have taken so long to get to read it but I think it was better, for me, for the beak between match and reading.

    Good to see Tasgooner in the bar – new opinions always very welcome.

    C100 – you absolute skinflint ! Three and fourpence for a top striker ? At least BtM was willing to push the boat out and go three and sixpence ! The waiters must rub their hands together when they see you lot turning up for lunch !

  37. 37
    Las says:

    We should have learned by now Arteta is not a one-trick-pony. He surprised us with his signings in every terms. White, Tomi, Jesus, Zinch, Ramsdale, Jorghino, Trossard… none of expected any of these players and they were instant hit. So I expect him having a card or two in his hand. We will see.
    About Havertz, I’m sure Arteta knew the way he wanted Arsenal to play, so he bought Havertz to make us able controling games. And we did. Certainly, there is room for improvement especially scoring goals but it will be adressed.

  38. 38
    North Bank Ned says:

    Another point about any January signing is that any new players won’t necessarily slot seamlessly into the team. They will need time to learn Arteta’s system.

  39. 39
    OsakaMatt says:

    Sorry I just noticed I referred to TTG @27 when I should have written C100…

    And I am going straight to 5 shillings for the top striker, no point messing about
    though I don’t where this transfer market inflation will all end

  40. 40
    Gunnersaurus Stunt Double says:

    I think Eddie has been very disappointing this season. He got his big pay rise but he hasn’t scored many goals and, far more damningly, he looks like he picks and chooses when he’s gonna put a shift in.

    If he wants to play regularly he needs to push Jesus for his spot. Jesus always works his balls off, so that should be the baseline from Eddie. Yet he doesn’t manage even this basic requirement.

    More frustrating still, is that sometimes he decides he is up for it and shows he’s perfectly capable of this sort of consistent closing down and run-making.

    No-one looks at our bench and sees him as someone who is gonna come on and score a goal, so he’s basically an expensive waste of a substitute.

    As Jesus is not hugely prolific (although capable of a lot more goals than he has so far this season) we need another striker who can score 10 to 15 goals a season in Eddie’s position as backup. And some of those goals need to be the first goal in a game, or the winning goal, or against big teams. This also gaurds against the occasions when Jesus goes a few games without a goal, or needs a breather.

    At some point, ideally, we’d have a new number 1 striker and Jesus can be number 2, and get some starts on the wings (like he did when playing 2 fiddle to Aguero at City)

    I can’t see us buying that player in this transfer window, and it would be madness to do anything which impeded our chances of doing so in the summer. So I reckon a canny loan is the way to play it. And hope us bringing in a new striker, even in the short term, highlights to Eddie that he is going backwards and needs to pull his finger out.

    If he doesn’t, I’d sell him in the summer and move on.

  41. 41
    bt8 says:

    Thanks CER for filling us in on the Liverpool game, a match I couldn’t see being off the grid on an Andean new year’s sojourn. It is somewhat encouraging at least to hear that the team performed better than they did in the West Ham and Fulham disappointments, but wherefore the goals that were so bountiful and numerous last season? Has the entire league figured out Martinelli, for instance, or is there another reason for his seeming ineffectiveness in attack? Fox in the box, killer instinct, and nose for goal are all useful adages that may apply to some extent but Arsenal going goalless is not acceptable.

  42. 42
    North Bank Ned says:

    Arteta suggests that we don’t have the money to buy an elite striker. Could our Academy be more of a cash cow? A list published by the International Centre for Sports Studies in Switzerland suggests it could.

    At 181 million euros, we are ranked sixth among Premier League clubs in the revenue raised over the past decade by selling players who have come through a club’s Academy. Chelsea is top at 347 million euros received for 28 players sold, followed by the neighbours (23 sold for 256 million euros), Manchester City (27 for 254 million euros), Aston Villa (11 for 203 million euros) and Liverpool (19 for 199 million euros).

    The sale of 26 players raised our 181 million euros, which put us 23rd in the global ranking. Benfica is the talent-farming champ, raising 560 million euros from selling 30 players, followed by Ajax Amsterdam, which sold 36 for 376 million euros.

    The recent inflation in transfer fees makes calculating the average sale price a futile exercise, and if we sold some of our star Academy products now in the first team squad, our number would soar. However, our Academy should run on parallel lines of produce-to-keep and produce-to-sell.

  43. 43
    North Bank Ned says:

    GSD@40: Spot on about Nketiah.

  44. 44
    TTG says:

    Firstly I also concur entirely with GSD about Nketiah. I saw his winning cameo appearance against Norwich and thought a star was born. But he has never fully convinced as a first team striker and as GSD says he is a very unconvincing substitute.
    I heard from a well placed Spud today that Werner is being acquired on a loan with an option to buy and his price is £15 m . While I’m sceptical about his likely effectiveness that price is interesting for a current German international who plays across a number of forward positions . He estimates the Totts are paying him between £100-£120 k pw. Can anyone think of any other German internationals of similar age who fit that sort of description ? What financial comparability is there ?
    Re Ned’s figures @42 could one of the reasons that a team with a world famous academy is down in 23rd place be that we don’t sell them for enough money ? After all we only have three Academy graduates in our current first team squad but we’ve produced some high quality individuals and continue to do so. I’d be surprised if this sort of statistic isn’t exercising the minds of the KSE hierarchy . It would certainly concern any business I’ve ever been involved with . I can think of Balogun, Willock , Martinez , Gibbs , Wilshere , Bellerin , Iwobi , and Bendtner in the last ten years . We only got fees for four of those and only Iwobi went for a fee that was daylight robbery.

  45. 45
  46. 46
    Countryman100 says:

    TTG @45. That is a huge compliment to the quality of writing here.

    Well done everybody! Fantastic company to be keeping.

  47. 47
    North Bank Ned says:

    TTG@44: That money would make Timo Werner the fifth-highest-paid player in the Totts’ squad. Levy doesn’t pay big wages on the whole. Bundesliga wages aren’t on PL levels, either. The average weekly wage at Werner’s club, RB Leipzig, is 64,400 a week, and that is third highest in the Bundesliga after Bayern and Dortmund.

  48. 48
    North Bank Ned says:

    That should be £64,400.

  49. 49
    TTG says:

    That’s interesting Ned . I think the Spuds estimate was based on what they thought Levy would pay him but Levy wouldn’t pay over the odds . It does increase the huge disparity between the value and earnings of Havertz and Werner . Similar age , ex- Chelsea , German internationals, neither have set the Premier League on fire .
    It does suggest if the right player is out there a deal might be done but as C100 says earlier it will be difficult to do a reasonable deal in our position

  50. 50
    North Bank Ned says:

    Tim Kleindeinst or Enes Unal. Two under the radar that might be able to do a job for half a season.

  51. 51
    OsakaMatt says:

    Thanks TTG @45 good to know the blog is liked 😃

    TP5 will be back at the end of January according to reports.
    He has certainly proven he can play at a high level for half
    a season and would be a big help if those reports are accurate.

  52. 52
    OsakaMatt says:

    Nice 50 Ned 👋👋

    And some good points @42 as well. It is very difficult to calculate as you say.
    TTG’s list of 8 players @44 is a good example of your point – I wouldn’t really
    have thought of half of them as “academy sales” as such though technically
    I suppose they are.

  53. 53
    OsakaMatt says:

    Welcome back bt8, hope you had a high old time in the Andes.

  54. 54
    OsakaMatt says:

    And welcome back to Werner, he used to make me laugh out loud at Chelski, hope he is still comedy gold in the marshes.

  55. 55
    Ollie says:

    Well in for the half-ton, Ned.
    And a Happy Birthday In The Sky to Dave.

  56. 56
    ClockEndRider says:

    TTG@45 – it’s so nice to have our humble blog recognised alongside other oases of sanity in an increasingly febrile Arsenal interweb world. Well done all, and long may it continue to be so. The Guv’nor will be raising a glass.

  57. 57
    MMTWP says:

    Loving GHF & keenly watching the discourse
    Just putting my tuppence worth in & probably showing that I know nothing and happy to be pilloried…as it seems we’re FFPd (though that doesn’t seem to stop Chelski or Manc AbUDhabi) & given that Eddie is seemingly not the answer why are Mika Bierith or John-Jules Tyreece not given a go. The latter is coming up 23yo and i think playing for the Tractor Boys. I think the former is doing ok at Motherwell in the SPL…not as tough as it once was..but also near where Stroller was born at Bargeddie…would save us a few bob, though there may be contractual stuff with them being on loan..
    Anyway time for me to turn to a wee tipple…no point getting my coat, as the temp has just dipped to 33C…it was nice in the pool (Swimming pool that is)

  58. 58
    Bathgooner says: