GOOD THINGS COME TO THOSE WHO WAIT – Transfers to build on a winning team not for transfers sake

A winning togetherness
A winning togetherness


So the end of another week of pre-season in which Arsenal are apparently no closer to any major signings. The first team squad has departed for Asia without a new star to excite the Gunner collective. Arsenal social media seems fit to burst with pent up frustration and this is worse than normal for 2 main reasons. Firstly thanks to Ivan the fans are aware that Wenger has the cash to spend and that the board are keen for him to empty the whole war chest. Secondly we are being linked with serious big name players and reportedly making sizeable bids but still not seemingly closing deals.

I am not going to claim I am not frustrated as well. I too am keen for us to move on and build on what is currently a winning team. The key however is just that, it is a winning team. By luck or good judgment Wenger found a blend of players and a balance of defence and attack from March to May that saw us go the last 10 games undefeated. Now some will argue we did not beat the big boys, we disastrously crashed out of both domestic cups and we did not do it over 38 matches. All of this is true but we did beat Bayern away in that period and Wenger did only get the blend correct in March. It is however all semantics and irrelevant to the subject in hand today.

We were a winning collective in the spring and unlike in previous seasons all those individuals key to that performance level and consistency will still be in Arsenal shirts come August. This being the case is not reasonable to bide our time and secure the right players to blend into this winning collective? What I do know is that we are in serious talks with serious clubs about serious players. I also believe that we are in for players that have not even made it into the paper and we are not in for players who the papers would have you believe we are in for. (For the latest transfer betting go to )

Gazidis well intentioned but pressure
Gazidis well intentioned but pressure


Add to this the fact  the negative impact of Ivan’s speech, made I am sure for the right reasons, is that every other club knows Wenger has cash and knows he is under pressure to spend it. The obvious consequence is that the seller may inflate the price thinking we might just pay the extra, above fair value. I think we all know that is not the Wenger way. The additional knock on consequence is that if we have secured an agreement with a top player we may choose to keep this fact under wraps so as to not impact negotiations elsewhere. This is best practice and good business acumen but does little to appease the angry frustrated fan. What I am really saying is that I believe we will strengthen between now and August 31st but for various reasons the big exciting announcement we crave may not be forthcoming, even if the deals are actually done.

Going back to the fact that we have a relatively strong squad anyway those comparing our inactivity to 2011 are way of the mark. In 2011 we have allowed 2 of our best players, including our skipper, to leave late in the summer and struggled to replace them. The difference as I have said is that we are not replacing in 2013 we are improving and strengthening.  There is no comparison, although I see fans making it, between 2011 and 2013. In 2011 we were bringing players in late to a team that was weak and not a cohesive unit at all . Understandably new additions would in those circumstances find it hard to find their feet swiftly. Wenger was criticized that summer and rightly so to a degree in my view. However in 2013 we have a strong side, with huge togetherness and a winning formula. So players arriving in August will not be called upon to save a sinking ship, more to add wind to already billowing sails.

I do not want our new signings to arrive in August any more than the next fan. I would however prefer the right buys at the right price in the right positions in August than a hasty poorly negotiated signings in July. I also feel that top quality players coming into this current squad will not find it difficult to adjust and fit in if Wenger has time to ensure he gets the right additions. I am not saying cheap and cheerful. I am saying quality and expensive, but if we are going to spend heavily let’s ensure we get it right.

Not on the plane but not yet ruled out?
Not on the plane but not yet ruled out?

Many will not agree and would love to have seen Higuain, Rooney,  Jovetic or Cesc boarding that plane last night. Hell we all would but there is plenty of evidence that top players joining a strong team in August can make it work trust me. Here are a few examples you may recall……

Thierry Henry – Signed 3rd August 1999 – Came in late and only managed 17 goal and 12 assists in 31 games. What a loser, no idea what became of him?

August signing TH14
August signing TH14

Sylvain Wiltord – This chap had the nerve to come after the season began at the very end of August having scored the winning goal in Euro 2000. He managed 8 goals and 10 assists in 27 league games which was pretty good to. We know what he did the following year at old Trafford

Gilberto Silva – Signed 7th August 2002 – Fresh from winning the World Cup and with no pre-season at all Gilberto arrived only 17 days before the season opener and only missed 3 league games.

Late signing, no pre-season, no matter!
Late signing, no pre-season, no matter!

Three of our greats and all three success stories in their first season having arrived missing pre-season with their team mates

Let’s roll the clock forward to the disastrous deadline day of 2011.  Yes there were mistakes made but 2 of the players Wenger had been linked with for some time and had fully done his homework.

Both Mikel Arteta and Per Mertesacker arrived at the end of August when the side was at its lowest ebb following the humiliation at old Trafford and made instant impacts. The Spaniard particularly was an ever present when fit starting 29 of the 35 remaining games and only missing through injury.

Very late, very right and very good business
Very late, very right and very good business


Just s few fairly significant examples of August business that was great business for Arsenal FC and brought success and stability in the case of the 2011 examples to the team. There is no disruption in adding quality players to an already successful group of players. As Liverpool did in the 1970s and 80s and Man United have done in recent times the great sides add a small number of better players to winning group. Arsenal did this in the summers before Wenger’s title winning seasons as the excellent Michael Jeffares observed on Gunners Town a while back. So yes now is the time to add top quality to a group of existing players who are together and have a winning mentality carried over from May. If however we add the sprinkling of star quality in July of August, whilst frustrating for us now will not matter over the season, as long as the additions are better than we have.


The club are working hard and trust me I don’t think we will be disappointed come August – GOOD THINGS REALLY DO COME TO THOSE WHO WAIT!

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  1. Yes I agree good things come to those who wait…… But we have been waiting for nearly 9 years I hope it was worth the wait..

  2. Here is really hoping good things are coming to Emirates from this season on..

    Excellent piece Dave, enjoyed!

    1. dat a gud one Dave,i never lost hope on dis present squard.whether addition or not,d the team spririt after Bayer munich game can tell anyone dat d boys minds ar set to make us proud.Tanx Dave,gud things comes at d right time.gooners4life.

  3. Great article Dave. We need to be patient amongst a daily craving for positive news. Gazidis said there was money there but also stressed these things take time especially if you’re dealing with clubs that didn’t have managers until recently.

    1. Been d most experience coach in EPL now,let wait and c what Arsene Wenger got in stock 4 dis season,i believe he knows wat he is doing.too soon to right d team off.

  4. The fact of the matter is that waiting is not easy. At the end of the day however, many times, waiting proves to have been worth it. We should exercise more patience and see what Wenger does with respect to strengthening the squad by August ending.
    On the other hand, I am excited at the number of youngsters in our rank. I would love to see what Ryo Miyaichi, Chuba Akpom, Serge Gnabry, Chuks Aneke, Tomas Eisfeld can bring into our team. Let us not forget that the Ozils, Wilsheres, Neymars et al were introduced to first tam football at the highest level from such age.
    In short, let us wait for Wenger to come up with what he has for us.

  5. Well crafted article. Even though we as fans are eager to see new signings, I for one don’t. Believe in d crazy nature of d market dis days dat a certain bale is bidded 85m for, an illmeradii or watever his name is who just finished an U-21 tournament move for 30m. It’s just crazy. Signings or not I remain a true gooner for ever. Abuse me if u like it changes nothing abt my luv for the club.

  6. My reaction to your article is: We don’t need to wait till August when 1)the selling club could ‘rightly’ say they have limited time to replace 2)the new players need time to blend with old players 3)If indeed Wenger is keen to buy BIG, he shouldn’t have dithered on Marouane Fellaini and Gonzalo Higuain; they are not unknown players, they are “top, top quality” players(remember whose quote?) and are available! 4)it seems the links to big players is geared towards ensuring fans buy tickets 5)buying AT LEAST 1(one ) great player now is showing respect to the fans

    1. Wow you have superb knowledge based on the tabloids I assume? We have not dithered at all and will announce big names real soon

    2. My reaction to your comment is that you are not in possession of any of the relevant facts regarding the Higuain negotiations so how on earth can you pass judgement on the way said negotiations are progressing or otherwise. If reports are to be believed the apparent delays are the fault of Real Madrid, not Arsenal. This is plain to see by anyone with half a brain. Likewise Fellaini, you are judging by what has been rumoured in the media, nothing has been said by the club concerning this transfer as far as I know. Did the sense of the article completely pass you by?

      1. I try and stay polite and reasonable but some don’t actually truly read the whole piece. Thanks Dave

    3. I presume your lack of knowledge about what is really happening in the transfer market, (and not the BS tripe fed gullible fans by the media) is out of ignorance and not stupidity. In answer to your points:
      1) IF an approach has been made, it is always well in advance of the end of the TW and gives any potential seller a great deal of time to find replacements. Usually the selling Club has decided that the player must go or wants to go (two different things) well before they open negotiations.
      2)Indeed they do BUT even with a pre-season tour under their belts, it won’t replicate the actual EPL experience….that is the most important element in the equation, not a few weeks in the summer.
      3) Who says they are available? Who says Wenger has dithered (whatever that means in a specific sense)? You have read and swallowed too much of the medias hype and rumour-mongering for your own good….don’t you understand that it is invented BS to get readers like you and cheap hits at any cost?
      4)Maybe to you it does but to a real fan,with enough savy to see what is really happening and to true supporters, there are many better ways to increase ticket sales than spread spurious rumours and play with our sensibilities.
      5) Why now? What does buying players have to do with true respect for fans? Respect is a two way street mate…respect the Club’s expertise and strategic planning and stop giving BS arguments about respecting the fans. The Club is showing respect by being careful and prudent and negotiating hard for the best players available….we don’t know for sure who those players are but this entire process didn’t begin at the opening of the TW so have patience for God’s sake and stop whining!

    4. Everyone else may be giving you excuses, but the fact of the matter is it’s not as hard as they’re making it out to be, other teams get business done WAY faster (we even did ourselves last summer) and nothing is done, no matter how soon it will be, which means we’ve already shot ourselves in the foot not giving them as much time as possible to build a rapport with the team

  7. Yap u are right,but january transfer,that is how we waited 4 new signing, but didnt happen. And if we keep this up,other player wil treten to leave the club,which is bad 4 us,so we need assurance that new signen her comen in.

    1. Kindly tell us who will threaten to leave the club? Also did you not notice that in the January window we signed a left back named Monreal, a Spanish international. Sorry, but you are an idiot.

  8. Yer see Dave i get evrytin you is sayin bruv like i get u wen u say the squad is strong at the moment coz it is bruv specially in our midfield we got plenty of depth and optionz init. But only to an extent like we only got Giroud as our striker it wud be dangerus bruv if we dnt sign any1 soon u get wat im saying? I’d prefer it if we hadthe squad buzzin wid dat team spirit yu no wat im sayin

    Also just wana say my piece on the Suarez noize aswell, da kids defo got suink special aint he bruv but wid the whole biting ting and rascism yu no dat aint gd blud specialy for the image of our club too u kno ther plenty of black Arsenal fans cud be a dangerous move by Wenger.

    No 1 can deny that Higuain is a diffrent class as well blud i seen sum of da goals he scored man he got some right foot bruv, defo prefer him at 25 mil

    1. I have not said we should not add quality just we should wait for the right quality and August is not a disaster. We will however move before then I am sure. Tend to share view on LS

  9. Great article fella. How refreshing to read something untainted by negetivity and pessimistic bile. This is really the time to wait optimistically as there is a clear wind of change. We’ve been spring cleaning with a view to bringing in the new. Look forward to seeing what happens

    1. Waiting 8 years isn’t long enough? This situation hasn’t just developed overnight or even over the last season.

  10. I know many people come on here and say they know this and they know that.
    and unfortunately, I’m one of those.
    But my info is one of the biggest agents in the UK (if not the biggest) – and he guaranteed to me that Higuain is a DONE DEAL! 100%. Either Benzema or Higuain was always going to be sold. Higuain has agreed terms with Gazidis. This deal is DONE!

  11. Indeed we shoudl be patient. Mert and Arteta are poor examples of the prudence of patince though. By them not starting the season we lost lot’s of points, suffered humiliation at OT and were left with a mountain to climb for 4th place trophy

  12. A nice article done to calm the fans.Top players lik Higuain & Suarez are here. What type of better players are on Market 4 Wenger to buy? Probably Messi or Ronaldo? U said succeesful busines of Artea and Permartsaker who came over night along with Andre Santos and Benayou.I think it looks more by chance that we got good of Arteta and Santos but not because Wenger studied about them up to end of August.I think foreget it was a busines done in pannic after a painful defeat by Man Untd. So what will happen if the top players are snatched others clubs? Dave i liked ur optimistc idea but sory to probably You are AW?

  13. So far all thats been said is what we hear every year ,money to spend, but we miss out on buying the quality

  14. Another delusional f’cker. We went ‘on a good run’ last season AFTER we’d been knocked out of everything….which has been the norm for many seasons. If you want to fool yourself we’re anywhere near being being contenders with the current squad, go ahead. You can look forward to the annual ‘4th place trophy’ fight beginning in February once again. The rest of us will continue to call this board and manager out for their negligence.

    1. Read the blog mate. It says we need to add quality just ensure we get the right quality to add to a good squad. I can only assume you did not actually read it of indeed cannot read

  15. Winning team?

    You must be having a laugh.

    We scraped through in the last 10 games to secure our 4th place trophy on the last day of the season. These games were barely won and 99.9% were against much “smaller” opposition who were languishing at the bottom end of the table. On top of that we had no cups to play for and thus only had the league to focus upon.

    That does not demonstrate a winning team, except if you consider 4th place is a trophy of course.

    We need top quality signings to finish off the puzzle, period. This current team will not close the points gap between us and UTD. They are simply not good enough and definitely will not be good enough once the teams around us have finished their summer transfer business.

    1. No winning 9 of the last 11 games we played constitutes the team currently being a winning side. At no point did I call them a trophy winning team which is why I am keen to add the quality

    2. We had the best offensive and defensive record of the run-in, gelled as a winning team and beat the Spuds to a CL spot, despite losing our best striker since TH and having Wilshere, Diaby and Sagna out for quite a few games. But wait, a true supporter NEVER credits the team for such everyday achievements….you only sing our praises when we win silverware or a title, right?
      there is little ARsenal can do to satisfy your kind…..try the Spuds or Liverpool….they did so much better with so much more!

  16. Great post as always. Just like u’ve rightly stated what the club needs is quality additions not just signings. For the 1st time Wenger has shifted from his usual self of telling fans how he’ll bring in 1 or 2 top top quality or how he wont even buy at all as players who are better than his present crop are not available. We the fans have brought upon ourselves unnecessary pressure without any quote from the club, the targeted player or the selling club about our interest aside paper speculation. The name might not be Higuain, Rooney, Fellaini, Suarez or Jovetic but the important thing is bringing someone who is good enough to improve us. The mentioned players are top players yet they wont guarantee success. I believe everyone connected to Arsenal will be happy and proud way into this transfer window.

  17. Hmmmm! Am gonna say good article coz you always know how to lay your plot and bare the facts. But I must tell ya, I’ve sidetracked and hoped on the impatient bandwagon even when all logical reasons (like u proffered above) begged of me not to. That is what the court of public opinion does to one…. I respect Arsene a lot, but he’d better appeased the fans and sign da thing (not his contract extension tho, coz that doesn’t bother me) as well win us a shining ware. In my opinion, we have waited in the football wilderness more than the Israelites did. Ramadan Kareem mates!

  18. Dave,this is fantastic and probably this is one of the best article i’ve read so far this summer.and back to the main issue i think we gunners should keep the patience…one love

  19. Dave,

    First of all, another pearler and well researched re: late(ish) signings. I’m going to play devils advocate for a moment.

    Is Gazidis throwing Wenger under a bus?

    Secondly, do you really think the squad is good enough? I have my reservations.

    1. Michael I do feel IG should have kept his mouth shut. Better we suffer thinking we will not spend and be surprised when we do rather than sit hear expecting it. Either way we will spend and the 1st one I mentioned to you a while back is done.

  20. I fully agree Dave, adding quality to a team that over the second half of last season showed title winning form, off course I’m excited like everybody else and my son is desperate to know what players name he can put on his new away kit !!

  21. Dave, hope CF4 deal is still as U said? I am a patient man bro. All genuine AFC fans are! Wenger said he expects signings, so I don’t understand why some whinners here keep saying he might not buy. Any time he brings them in, that will be the best time for them to have joined the club. It doesn’t matter if U join a club in March, U can never run past ur shadow. Keep the faith gooners.

  22. Dave,
    Congratulations on showing quite clearly that you do have arsenal DNA in you. I always look forward to your articles as they are always insightful, however feel compelled to add wind to your sails as the amount of ignorance exhibited by responses can be quite discouraging. Please note the following:

    Most arsenal fans these days only became fans of our glorious club in the late 90’s, when the club was in an ascendancy. They have no idea of what it was like to chase Liverpool relentlessly through the eighties and therefore believe that winning a trophy every year is a right.

    They are also oblivious to the fact that the club is run firstly as a business, with obligations to shareholders. I do believe not one of them would dare spend more than they earn in other to satisfy their wants or ‘yearnings for a trophy’. Arsenal made a heavy investment that was based on the prevailing economic climate of the footballing world at the time. A masterstroke if I may say so, but it was impossible to predict the advent of the billionaire ‘sugar daddy’ who turned mediocre clubs with limited incomes into clubs that bought success overnight.

    These are the same fans that soak up every story the media throws out despite evidence from precedence suggesting that the club always carries out its transfer business in utmost secrecy. Pertinent to note also that Bergkamp aside all arsenal greats where relative unknowns till the came to the club and AW turned them into ‘world class’ footballers.

    I would therefore advise that you try not to get discouraged by these fly by night fans. Some have been known to even change allegiance more than once in a lifetime, which is the complete opposite to the definition of a fan.

    Keep up the good work

    1. Thanks my friend. I am thick skinned. Guys have to realise that it is just a hobby and only my opinions

  23. I agree with you Dave. I am very tired of the naysayers. My job involves representing people and I have found that most persons dont care a hoot about what you HAVE done…..they too busy focusing on what they WANT you to do. However, it is what you have done that will cause persons to consider you suitable to do what they want you to do. I say all that because a lot of the naysayers tend to use the argument that Wenger is living off his past achievements…..trouble is that his past achievements are directly responsible for even their own expectations, whether they want it or not.

    I see no point in hurling barbs after the Manager TWO WEEKS into the transfer window. Negotiations are nebulous and unpredictable and they tend to be most challenging right when you think you have an agreement. I know this…its what I do every day. So…… why not wait until the TW is close before passing judgment? Those of the so-called “fans” who sledge the manager after seeing no signings two weeks in…..what would they do if at the end of August we have a few amazing signings in…. aaah…. I know…. they will find something to gripe about. Its what they do best really….GRIPE….not SUPPORT… I support the team and the manager, win, lost or draw. Following any sport or team should teach one that winning is not some kind of God-given right… it takes hard work, talent and lets face it, more than a little luck. I love The Arsenal. And I consider what I have already seen over the years from this team to be a special privilege…. I wont sully that with mindless griping.

    Thanks again Dave. Keep the good work going.

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