So not only did we scrape into second place, we’ve signed a new player before the end of May! Defensive midfielder Granit Xhaka joins Arsenal from Borussia Monchengladbach.
Arsenal’s number one need from summer transfers is surely a source of more goals, but we need more depth virtually everywhere so this is a great start to the transfer window. A bit of defensive bite in front of the back four will be very useful, especially given the number of goals we conceded from outside the box this season.
Looking at his stats and the various YouTube videos, he looks a very useful player. Some journalists are making something of his high card count, both yellow and red, but unless he’s going to go completely bonkers I don’t think this is such a bad thing. Arsenal have had plenty of stick for not being strong and committed enough when defending, so a bit of Granit in the midfield will be no bad thing. Patrick Viera got planty of cards and we loved him.
Pictures of Xhaka in his kit got leaked ahead of the official announcement, reportedly by his girlfriend tweeting them. They also seem to confirm that the earlier leaked pics of he new kit were genuine too.
Hopefully this is going to be the first of several signings. We desperately need more goals, and that was true even before Danny Welbeck got crocked. I like Olivier Giroud, despite his current dodgy hipster look. He’s better than many give him credit for, but not as good as we need. He seems to have a prolonged goal drought at some point each season and that costs us. A lot of media sources are linking us to Alvaro Morata for very big money. Does he get enough goals though?
Arsene Wenger says that there is money to spend if the right player is available. Some see this as code for don’t expect anything, but to be fair he has chased Suarez and Higuaín in recent summers and was reportedly pissed off that Manchester United got Martial after being told the player wasn’t available.
As well as needing more goals, we need replacements for Arteta, Rosicky and maybe Flamini, so hopefully Xhaka won’t be the only midfielder coming in.
So, great start to the summer Arsene, but a striker, more midfielders and maybe an extra central defender please.
It hasn’t been a great Arsenal season, let’s not lose sight of that, but I can’t think of a final day that’s provided the sheer comedy value delivered by Spurs today. You had one job Spurs, avoid losing to relegated Newcastle United!
A point for Arsenal against Villa would guarantee third place. Three points would set up the possibility of so many jokes to keep us going for days. But it needed Newcastle to deliver the punchline. Couldn’t happen obviously.
Hahahahahahahahahaha, uncontrolled implosion carried out, hahahahahahahaha, hahahaha, not a viable device after all hahahahahahaha, hahahahahahahahahaha, turned out to be a hoax all along, hahahahahahahahahaha.
Great start with a goal in five minutes – Olivier Giroud – 1:0 Arsenal. Another ten minutes and Newcastle have actually scored. Couldn’t happen could it? But then we didn’t score again for ever and ever. Newcastle score again but then concede and go down to ten men. And we still haven’t scored again. Against Villa. Here we go again. Huff, puff, dominate possession, then fail to score enough goals.
We’re heading for second place, which we never imagined really happening, but we don’t believe. We know how easily this is going to go wrong. We’re failing to kill off the club in bottom place. Spurs, who’ve scored plenty away from home this season, need just one more to finish ahead of us. One of these was bound to happen and piss us all off. It was just a matter of time.
But then Newcastle scored again from the penalty spot. A dive as it turned out but we didn’t know and wouldn’t have cared anyway. We just thought Spurs were going all Spursy. Then Giroud scored again. Two nil. Then he did it again. Three nil. Then Spurs really did get all Spursy and conceded twice. Happy St Totteringham’s Day.
Our fourth goal came from Arteta, on as a sub in his last appearance for the club. He won’t get the credit, as his shot hit the bar and went in off the keeper, but it was fantastic to see him involved at the very end of his time at Arsenal. I wish we’d bought him to Arsenal earlier. He has many critics but I don’t know why. We could have done with his experience and calm in midfield a lot sooner. So good luck to Mikel and thanks, even if you do end up coaching City.
Last day too for another great player held back by injury, but Tomas Rosicky didn’t make it onto the pitch. Had he suffered fewer injuries I think he would have been a certain starter for his whole career at Arsenal. Some guys on the fringe you think are nicking a living. But not Tomas Rosicky. He was a fantastic player who had his living nicked off him by repeated injury.
After the game the rest of the players lined up in number seven shirts in tribute. Well deserved. I’m sure he’ll find somewhere to stick that silver cannon as well!
So, second place, a Giroud hat trick and St Totteringham’s Day. Some days it turns out that you don’t actually know enough Spurs fans. Amazing. All after you had a nagging doubt that we would conspire to lose, come fourth and be condemned to a supermarket sweep on the transfer market after scraping through the qualifying round of the Champions League.
This doesn’t make everything ok. We need someone who will score goals and good players to add more depth and more steely determination. But it made the last day a million miles more bearable and I’m still smiling over Spurs. Mind the gap. Still.