Monday, August 30, 2010

Juve Trails Arsenal's 20-year-old Full Back

Juventus are reportedly pondering over making a move for Arsenal defender Armand Traore.

Opportunities in the first-team have been few and far between for the youngster, owing to the presence of Gael Clichy. This is believed to have prompted the Turin-based club to take an interest in the player, with a view to luring him away to Italy.

Juve have been rebuilding their squad following a largely underwhelming season that saw them miss out on Champions League football, and manager Luigi Del Neri is thought to be interested in landing the player as one of the final pieces in his jigsaw prior to the closure of the transfer window.

Now Sky Sports claims that the Serie A heavyweights are pondering over making a bid to prise the 20-year-old away from the clutches of the north London club.

Juventus sporting director Giuseppe Marotta recently branded the full-back as an "interesting player", but has thus far maintained that there have been no significant developments.

Traore had previously been on the brink of a switch to Benfica, but the player's wage demands scuppered the deal.


Sunday, August 29, 2010

Video Highlights Blackburn Rovers 1-2 Arsenal and Both Managers' Comments After Game

Blackburn Rovers 1 (M.B Diouf)
Arsenal 2 (Theo Walcott, Andrei Arshavin)



Arsene Wenger's comments on the game



Sam Allerdyce's comments on the game



Friday, August 27, 2010

Squillaci Wears No. 18


Sebastian Squillaci officially signs for Arsenal and will wear jersey number 18 which previously owned by Mikael Silvestre. Welcome Squillaci!

Arsenal Draw with Shakhtar Donetsk, Sporting Braga and Partizan Belgrade


The draw for the UEFA Champions League Group Stage has been made. Arsenal will take on Shakhtar Donetsk, Sporting Braga and Partizan Belgrade in Group H.

Below are brief profiles of the three sides, with links to their official websites.

Shakhtar DonetskShakhtar Donetsk
Website:
www.shakhtar.com
Ukrainian champions Shakhtar Donetsk qualified directly for the Group Stage and are already seven games into their domestic league season. Former Arsenal striker Eduardo has scored twice in three appearances for Shakhtar.

Sporting BragaSporting BragaWebsite: www.scbraga.pt
Sporting Braga came second in the Portuguese Liga last season and defeated Sevilla 5-3 on aggregate in their play-off match to reach the Group Stage.
FK Partizan
Partizan Belgrade
Website: www.partizan.rs
Serbian champions Partizan Belgrade qualified for the Group Stage after defeating Anderlecht on penalties in their play-off. Both legs had ended 2-2. It is their first appearance in the Champions League for seven years.

Squillaci Completes Move to Emirates Stadium

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has today confirmed the signing of French centre-back Sebastien Squillaci from Sevilla.

The Spanish club had announced at the weekend that a £6.5 million deal had been agreed between the clubs.

The 30-year-old will not be available for the weekend game against Blackburn Rovers but he will be eligible for the Champions League campaign.

His new manager is in no doubt that the Gunners have acquired a fine player who will suit the Premier League.

"We needed a centre-back of quality and experience if possible, and at the right price - he was all of that," Wenger told reporters.

"He is a real defender and is good in the one against one, good in the air, and can score goals on set-pieces as well.

"I believe he will be suited to the English game.

"He will train with us tomorrow morning, but will not be involved on Saturday."

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Ex-Gunners Set for German Switch

Werder Bremen have confirmed that former Arsenal defender Mikael Silvestre is on the brink of joining the club.

The French centre-back's contract expired at the Emirates during the summer and he is now a free agent.

"We are in promising talks, it looks like Silvestre is coming to us," Bremen sporting director Klaus Allofs told Kicker.

Silvestre spent nine years at Manchester United, claiming a host of winners' medals, but could never quite exert the same influence whilst with the Gunners after joining in 2008.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Squillaci Travels to London for Medical, Not for Holiday!

Sevilla defender Sebastien Squillaci will sign for Arsenal, subject to him passing a medical in London on Monday, according to the Spanish club.

Gunners boss Arsene Wenger claimed as recently as Friday that he was "far from being close to signing" Squillaci, though he did admit the defender was on his radar.

But it seems as though Wenger has managed to land further defensive reinfocements, adding to the capture of Laurent Koscielny earlier this summer.

"Defender Sebastien Squillaci is tonight travelling to London to have a medical at Arsenal, the club he will be transferred to after an agreement was reached by the two clubs pending the results of the medical," a statement on Sevilla's official website said.

Sevilla did not reveal how much Arsenal have paid for the France centre-back, though it had been reported that a fee of around 8 million euros would be enough to prise him away.

The former Lyon centre-half, who joined Sevilla from Les Gones two years ago, asked to be left out of the side for the Champions League play-off against Braga last week so he would not be cup-tied for European competition.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Another French Defender Linked With Arsenal

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is set to turn his attention to Bordeaux defender Michael Ciani if he fails to sign Sevilla’s Sebastian Squillaci according to the News of the World.

Ciani, who is a former team-mate of new Arsenal signing Marouane Chamakh is a French international having made his debut for France in their friendly against Spain back in March.

The 26-year-old also scored five times for the Bordeaux last season including goals against Bayern Munich and Maccabi Haifa in the Champions League.

However it would seem that Arsenal will not want to pay the £15 million price Bordeaux have put on their player.

Wenger did confirm last week that the club have made an offer for Squillaci and this led to the French international being left out of Sevilla’s Champions League squad to face Braga on Wednesday.

It is believed Squillaci missed Saturday nights game against Barcelona in the Spanish Super Cup, but if Wenger fails to sign the player then Ciani could be the next best option for the Gunner boss.
What say you Gooners??

Video : Highlight Arsenal 6 - 0 Blackpool

Arsenal 6 - 0 Blackpool

Scorers:
Theo Walcott (12)
Andrei Arshavin (pen 32)
Theo Walcott (39)
Abou Diaby (49)
Theo Walcott (58)
Marouane Chamakh (83)



Saturday, August 21, 2010

Gallas Set to Leave Arsenal For Another London Club

Tottenham Hotspur manager Harry Redknapp has confirmed that William Gallas is on the brink of joining the club, describing the signing of the former Arsenal captain as a "no-brainer".

Gallas left Arsenal on a free transfer in June having failed to agree a contract extension with the club he joined from Chelsea in 2006. The French defender made 145 appearances for the Gunners, scoring 17 goals.

Following France's disastrous World Cup campaign, Gallas was targeted by Panathinaikos but could not agree personal terms with the Greek side.

Despite reservations over the reaction of Tottenham fans to a former Arsenal captain arriving at the club, Redknapp is determined to strengthen his defensive options with Jonathan Woodgate a long-term injury victim and Ledley King often unable to play two games in a week.

Gallas will undergo a medical on Friday afternoon before making Tottenham the third club he has represented in London.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Preview : Arsenal vs Blackpool

Having soared to joint first place in the Premier League table by comprehensively beating Wigan Athletic on the opening day, Blackpool travel to the Emirates for what is likely to prove a sterner examination of their top-flight credentials against Arsenal.

Goals from Gary Taylor-Fletcher, Marlon Harewood – who netted twice – and Alex Baptiste gave the Tangerines a dream debut in the Premier League, and they will be hoping to draw on that momentum to spring a major surprise this Saturday.

Arsenal began their own campaign on Merseyside, where they salvaged a 1-1 draw against Liverpool with help from an uncharacteristically clumsy Pepe Reina. It was not a wholly convincing performance from Arsene Wenger’s side, though a point at Anfield is a decent return, and they should feel happier on home turf where many teams have been eclipsed by the Gunners’ fluent passing game in the four years since they moved into the stadium.

Arsenal have not, though, enjoyed the best of weeks. Central defender Laurent Koscielny, who avoided serious injury from the rash challenge that saw Joe Cole sent off at Anfield, was himself dismissed in the closing minutes when he was somewhat harshy adjudged to have handled the ball deliberately. But while his absence will be temporary, those of two midfielders will be longer. Samir Nasri, who looked sharp in pre-season and also impressed against Liverpool, had to undergo surgery on a knee surgery and is likely to be out for a month, while promising youngster Emmanuel Frimpong injured cruciate knee ligaments in training and has been ruled out for up to nine months.

Meanwhile, Wenger’s efforts to strengthen his squad in the transfer market were frustrated when Fulham rejected a second bid for Mark Schwarzer, meaning that Arsenal’s goalkeeping problems remain unresolved; incumbent Manuel Almunia was beaten at his near post by David Ngog last weekend. Arsenal also reportedly made an offer for Sevilla’s centre-half Sebastien Squillaci in midweek, but at the time of writing no deal has been struck or the France international.

However Wenger shuffles his pack for the Seasiders’ first league meeting with Arsenal since March 1971, he knows that his side must win if their title bid is not to stall early on; the emphatic victories already secured by rivals Chelsea and Manchester United have confirmed that there is no margin for error, especially in home matches.

On a wave of euphoria following their outstanding start to Premier League life at Wigan, Blackpool will be gunning for a bigger scalp in north London this weekend. They may not have beaten Arsenal away since 1958, but that won’t daunt manager Ian Holloway, currently perceived to be a miracle worker at Bloomfield Road. Some concerns were raised about Holloway’s future in midweek following the resignation as chairman and director of the club by Karl Oyston, though the manager himself insists it’s business as usual.

And he succeeded in adding to his squad by signing Israel defender Dekel Keinan from Maccabi Haifa in midweek. Keinan became the Seasiders' seventh summer arrival – along with utility player Chris Basham, striker Marlon Harewood, French trio Ludovic Sylvestre, Elliot Grandin, Malaury Martin and defender Craig Cathcart – and goes straight into the squad for the Arsenal game.

In addition, Bournemouth have accepted an improved bid from Blackpool for striker Brett Pitman, who is now discussing personal terms with the Lancashire club. Holloway said of Pitman: "He epitomises us - we are a bunch of people who need to make a name for ourselves." And that’s what they’ll be aiming to do at the Emirates.


Jay Simpson Leaves Arsenal For Hull City

Striker Jay Simpson has today signed for Championship side Hull City, ending his long relationship with the Gunners having joined its Academy aged nine.

Jay (21), made three first-team appearances for Arsenal scoring two goals, both in the 2008/09 Carling Cup competition. He also has the honour of being the first player to score a hat-trick at Emirates Stadium in the 2007 FA Youth Cup against Cardiff City.

A popular face around Arsenal, Jay gained invaluable experience out on loan over the past three seasons. Last term he impressed at QPR with eight goals in his first 15 games. In 2007/08, Jay spent the campaign with Millwall and performed superbly to be awarded the League One 'Player of the Year' accolade. The striker also had a spell at West Bromwich Albion during the 2008/09 season.

Resource : Arsenal.com

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Carlos Vela + £4 million = Mark Schwarzer??

Fulham have asked for Arsenal striker Carlos Vela plus cash from the Gunners in exchange for Mark Schwarzer.

The two London clubs have reached deadlock in their negotiations because Arsenal are unwilling to match Fulham’s £4 million valuation of the 37-year-old goalkeeper.

Arsenal had a £2m bid rejected for Schwarzer in May and have not made a further offer, although it is understood that the two clubs are still in talks.

“They have different valuations of Schwarzer,”

“Arsenal don’t want to pay the £4m that Fulham want but one possibility is a player exchange deal to push it through."

It is understood that several Arsenal fringe players have been mentioned and Fulham, who are keen to bolster their forward ranks despite the signing of forward Moussa Dembele from AZ Alkmaar on Wednesday, have enquired about Vela among others.

Arsenal are likely to value the Mexican international far beyond a £2m makeweight, even though the 21-year-old is running out of time to make his mark at the club.

A deal has also been held up because the west Londoners have been unable to secure a proven goalkeeper to replace Schwarzer. An offer was made to David James but the former England No.1 made the surprise decision to drop a division and move to Championship club Bristol City.

Vela has made more appearances for his country than he has for Arsenal in the Premier League (25, including only three starts) and has scored just eight goals for the club since his 2006 switch from his homeland, although he did spend two seasons on loan in Spain.

Despite the sticking points in Arsenal’s pursuit of Schwarzer, who handed in a transfer request last week and was not picked for Fulham’s opening Premier League fixture against Bolton Wanderers, both sides expect the deal to eventually be completed before the end of the transfer window.

Hughes has been widely linked with a move for another forward he managed at Manchester City and Blackburn Rovers, Roque Santa Cruz, but sources say he is not expected to pursue the Paraguayan because of concerns over his injury record.

Gunners Close To Sign French Defender

Arsenal are closing in on the signing of French defender Sebastien Squillaci from Sevilla, according to The Mirror.

The defender was withdrawn from Sevilla's Champions League qualifier on Wednesday night ahead of a potential move to the Emirates Stadium.

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has been trying to strengthen his defence this summer after losing William Gallas, Philippe Senderos and Mikael Silvestre at the end of last season.

Having brought in Laurent Koscielny from Lorient, the Gunners have also been linked with Everton's Phil Jagielka and Werder Bremen's Per Mertesacker, but it now appears as though Squillaci could be the player to strenghten their backline.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Samir Nasri Out for A Month

Arsenal have confirmed that Samir Nasri requires minor surgery on a knee injury and is expected to be sidelined for around a month.

The Frenchman sustained the injury in the Gunners' opening Premier League game against Liverpool at Anfield.

The player, who has looked impressive in pre-season and against Liverpool, will undergo the operation on Wednesday.

There is better news on the injury front for the Gunners though, with defender Johan Djourou having recovered from a hamstring injury and available to deputise for the suspended Laurent Koscielny this weekend.

Arsenal Young Striker Keen To Make Permanent Move to Hull City

Arsenal youngster Jay Simpson is keen to seal a permanent transfer to Hull City, according to his agent.

Simpson, 21, has been made available for transfer this summer after manager Arsene Wenger told him his future lay away from the Emirates. After grabbing 12 goals in 39 Championship appearances on loan at Queens Park Rangers last season, the striker is determined to return to the division with the Tigers.

Speaking to the Hull Daily Mail, agent Leon Callender declared his client had been impressed after visiting the club and was eager to sign on the dotted line once a fee had been agreed.

He said: "Should the two clubs come to an agreement on a deal, I can't see there being any problem in the deal going through. Jay is very interested in a move to Hull.

"He sees Hull as a good Championship club and feels it would be a good move for him. He travelled up to Hull last week for a look around and has spoken to the gaffer. Now it is just down to the clubs to agree a deal."

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Wenger Keen to Bring Schwarzer Before Blackpool Game

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is hoping to have concluded a deal to bring goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer to the club from Fulham before the Gunners welcome Blackpool to the Emirates on Saturday, according to a report from The Daily Mirror.

Fulham are believed to want £4 million for the 37-year-old, but Arsenal, who apparently see Schwarzer also moving into a coaching role at the club, are willing to pay £2.5m.

The Gunners have apparently already had a £2m offer turned down, but it seems that a deal is increasingly likely as Schwarzer is keen to leave Cracen Cottage.

Should Schwarzer join Arsenal, then that should pave the way for Shay Given to leave Manchester City for Craven Cottage, after the Irishman dropped behind Joe Hart in the Eastlands pecking order.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Preview : The Big Guns Opener

Great expectations as two giants aim to silence doubters

Roy Hodgson kicks off the new Premier League season as he ended the last one – with a game against Arsene Wenger’s Arsenal. But whereas in May he was in charge of Fulham, resting key players for their trip to the Emirates a few days before contesting the Europa League final, now he is at the helm of Liverpool, still England’s most successful club, even if the glory days are fast receding into the distance.

Taking over at Anfield is Hodgson’s reward not only for working wonders at Craven Cottage, but for a lengthy career of solid if not always spectacular achievement in European club and international football.

His task is a tough one: the Reds lost their way alarmingly in what turned out to be Rafa Benitez’s last season in charge, aiming for first and finishing seventh while making early exits from every cup competition, including the Champions League.

His first Premier League game as Liverpool boss will also be Wenger’s 525th in charge of the Gunners, and although the Frenchman has lost only 85 of those, compared with 307 wins, and has finished in the top four in every one of his 14 seasons in North London, he is arguably under even greater pressure to deliver than Hodgson.

‘Arsenal haven’t won a trophy since 2005’ is in danger of becoming the latest football cliché, and is something that no doubt irks Wenger as much as it frustrates the fans.

He’s been accused of being too frugal, too stubborn, too obsessed with the beautiful game and over-reliant on youth in pursuit of his principles. There’s talk he’s about to commit to a new contract that would effectively bind him to the Gunners for the rest of his career; but at the same time there is speculation that this will be his last season at the Emirates if he fails to end the trophy drought.

Will changes bring greater staying power?

Both squads have new signings who’ll be looking to integrate and impress from the off – including Joe Cole, Christian Poulsen, Milan Jovanovic, Laurent Koscielny and Marouane Chamakh.

But in an unwelcome echo of last season, both teams may also be without key players - World Cup finalists, no less - as Fernando Torres, Cesc Fabregas and Robin van Persie have all been struggling to reach match fitness in time for Sunday afternoon’s opener.

Injuries (and in some cases loss of form) were a recurring motif for both clubs last season, and for both, their prospects of improvement will depend on being able to keep their respective treatment rooms unclogged.

There have also been some significant departures over the summer: Arsenal have seen no fewer than four central defenders move on, while Yossi Benayoun has quit Anfield and Javier Mascherano could yet follow him.

Liverpool fans crave greater consistency (and a little less caution) on the pitch, and greater stability off it. Hodgson’s arrival has brought an air of calm and optimism to Anfield, but the ownership issue remains a distraction. Arsenal fans are looking for more durability, especially at the back, and less naivety, especially against Chelsea and Manchester United.

It is unlikely that either manager has concluded his summer transfer business, so both teams are works in progress; but this weekend's most compelling fixture may offer some clues about which one of these two giants has the stronger credentials.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Arsene Wenger : "Chamakh Will Shine in Premier League"

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is convinced Marouane Chamakh's height will give the club the boost to land the Premier League title.

At six foot two and with an eye for goal, the Morocco international has been brought into the Emirates Stadium to add a physical threat to the front line. After kicking off his home debut with a goal against AC Milan, the centre forward is expected to continue his record of grabbing 56 in 230 Ligue 1 appearances while with Bordeaux.

Speaking to the club's official website, Wenger was convinced Chamakh would help stop the five year wait to claim the top flight trophy.

He said: "Marouane Chamakh for me is a striker who works very hard.

"He is a team player and makes players around him good and better.

"He had a very good pre-season and can give us something which is very important in England - he is good in the air.

"He has everything you would want from a typical centre forward. That means people who play to fight up front and work very hard for the team.

"That is what I expect from him.

"That is why every team which has him in the side, every player loves him."

Gunner's WAGS : Baroness Caroline Luel-Brockdorff

Caroline Fleming (or Baroness Caroline Luel-Brockdorff to give her official name) is the girlfriend of the Arsenal and Denmark striker Nicklas Bendtner. They are 12-years-old different (which currently Bendtner is 22-year-old while Caroline is 34-year-old).

She divorced from a rich banker and is reported to be worth over £400m, which would dwarf any riches that the Danish Player-of-the-Year could possibly have saved in his short career. She is also an accomplished TV presenter, which is how she Bendtner who was a surprise guest on one of her shows.


 At least we all now know why Bendtner’s groin injury won’t go away!

Friday, August 13, 2010

Theo Walcott : It's a Massive Season for Me

Arsenal and England winger Theo Walcott acknowledged that he is set to begin a "massive season" in his career this term.

The 21-year-old was called up to the Three Lions for their friendly with Hungary on Wednesday, coming into a new-look England team after being left off of the World Cup roster by Fabio Capello.

Walcott has a disappointing season with the Gunners last year, one that was hampered by injuries and ended in not making the trip to South Africa this summer.

However, with last season now behind him, Walcott intends to show the world his quality this term.

"It is a massive season for me," Walcott told Press Association Sport.

"After the disappointment of the summer, I know what I have to do.

"When something doesn't go well for you, just forget about it and move on to the next one. That is what I will do this season.

"I need to play as many games as I can for Arsenal, week-in week-out and show everyone what I can do.

"I am 21 now and it is time for me to push on. I am looking forward to the next step."

Injuries have been a big concern for Walcott during his career, but the speedy winger insists that he is concentrating on his football after enjoying a good pre-season.

"A lot of people haven't seen me play throughout a whole season.

"In previous seasons I have put a lot of pressure on myself saying 'I don't want to get injured' and things like that.

"I have just had a very good pre-season, I am happy to be back playing football now and I want to show everybody what I can do this season.

"This season I am just going to go and enjoy it, express myself and show everybody what I can do."

Schwarzer Desperately Wants Arsenal Move


The rumours about who's gonna be the new Arsenal's number one still playing around over the internet. The latest news from ESPN Soccernet told us that Fulham goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer has pleaded with the club to allow him to join Arsenal.

Arsenal being linked with Schwarzer for the past month, but Arsene Wenger's interest was said to have cooled after he was quoted a price of £4 million by Fulham.

Schwarzer, 37, is to have showdown talks with new Fulham manager Mark Hughes as soon as he returns from international duty, having featured in Australia's 2-0 defeat to Slovenia. Schwarzer rescheduled his flight back from Slovenia to meet with Hughes.

But it now seems certain the former Middlesbrough goalkeeper will head to Emirates Stadium as their new number one after making it clear he does not want to stay at Fulham.

"I need it to happen," Schwarzer told the Australian Daily Telegraph. "I've had a couple of chats with Mark Hughes. It's delicately poised. Who wouldn't be keen to go to Arsenal?

"At this stage in my career it's an amazing opportunity to play at that level and one I really want to take. Only time will tell whether that happens or not."

Schwarzer denied he would pull himself out of Saturday's game against Bolton Wanderers to engineer a move as the club's haggle over a transfer fee, but he could miss the game through injury.

"I have never sat out a game [to prove a point] and never would," Schwarzer said. "But it needs to be resolved sooner rather than later. I'm not sure whether I'll play (for Fulham) on the weekend. I've got a few little injury problems but we'll have to wait and see how I pull up when I return to London."

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Arsenal Ready to Unload Almunia?

Arsenal are reportedly ready to release the current first-choice goalkeeper Manuel Almunia after Aston Villa are set to make a move for the Arsenal goalkeeper to replace Fulham-bound starter Brad Friedel.

According to The Mirror, a trio of goalkeeping moves could start with Cottagers number one Mark Schwarzer moving to the Gunners, and Fulham would respond by making a deal for Friedel, a former United States international.

Schwarzer’s move to Arsenal would leave Villa with no keeper, but the club are interested in Almunia despite the number of critical errors he made this past season.

The Spaniard has not seen much playing time from Arsene Wenger in the pre-season, with the Frenchman preferring to give Lukasz Fabianski a chance to seize the top goalkeeping spot.

Despite the fact that Martin O’Neill quit the club just days before the season started, Villa would look to quickly replace Friedel, and hope that giving Almunia a new start will bring out his quality.

Sagna Welcomed Spahic to Boost Arsenal Back Line


Bacary Sagna has insisted Montpellier's Emir Spahic is the man to bolster Arsenal's depleted back line.

Spahic, 29, has earned rave reviews in Ligue 1 since arriving last year. With William Gallas, Sol Campbell, Mikael Silvestre and Philippe Senderos all let loose, manager Arsene Wenger is believed to be in the market for a new central defender.

Speaking to Le Foot Hebdo, Sagna declared the Bosnia international was the man to fill the void.

He said: "I have followed him a lot last season in Le Championnat de France. He is a really good player.

"He is gifted enough to join a club like Arsenal. If he does join the club, he would be welcomed."

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Gunner's WAGS : Bouchra Van Persie

The woman behind Robin van Persie and mother of two children.Bouchra and Robin have known each other since their childhood. They met in Rotterdam and were soon up to their ears in love. At age 20, the Moroccan Bouchra ventured the step to enter the knot with Robin.From their marriage, they were given two children which are Shaqueel Van Persie and Dina Layla.




Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Wenger Consider To Take Goalkeeper On Loan


Arsenal are pondering a move for Shay Given as Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini is set to name Joe Hart his number one goalkeeper.

Hart is set to earn the starting spot in net for both City and England as Fabio Capello is ready to make the 23-year-old his number one when the Three Lions take on Hungary in a friendly on Wednesday.

Gunners manager Arsene Wenger is desperate to solve his goalkeeping crisis and with Given looking at the possibility of sitting the bench, Arsenal are looking to make a move for the Republic of Ireland international, according to The Mirror.

Given would jump at the chance of moving to the Gunners, and would most likely join Arsenal on a loan deal.

Wenger’s interest in Fulham goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer has waned as the Gunners would have to pay a transfer fee and sign him to an expensive two-year deal.

The Frenchman looked into making a deal for Hart, who had a fantastic season on loan at Birmingham, but City see the Englishman as their goalkeeper of the future and are unwilling to give him up.

Given also enjoyed a fine term for the Eastlands club, but is still recovering from a shoulder injury that prematurely ended his season last year, and with Hart playing well in pre-season it looks as if Mancini could give the youngster the starting job at City.

Arsenal Eyes Another Frenchman

Roma's Philippe Mexes is under Arsenal's radar, according to La Repubblica, who claim he could be enticed by an offer from north London.

With Arsenal losing William Gallas, Sol Campbell and Mikael Silvestre, Arsene Wenger is eager to replace them and is scouring the market for a central defender.

And his first choice falls on Mexes. The Frenchman has long been linked with an exit from Roma and he is valued at around £9 million.

He recently rejected advances from Juventus, but the possible arrival of Nicolas Burdisso from Inter could see Mexes relegated to the bench, meaning an Arsenal offer would be tough to refuse.

Mexes was peripheral to plans last season, and having spent six years in the capital, a breath of fresh air could be welcome.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Arsenal Launch Bid for Another Goalkeeper


Arsenal are reportedly preparing an audacious £23 million bid for Liverpool goalkeeper Pepe Reina.

According to The Sun, Arsene Wenger has switched his target from experienced Fulham keeper Mark Schwarzer to the 27-year-old Reina, who has only recently signed a six-year deal at Anfield in April.

Liverpool manager Roy Hodgson has reiterated that he does not wish to sell any of his key players this summer, which could be a large stumbling block for any potential transfer.

Wenger has been actively seeking a new first-choice goalkeeper this summer as Manuel Almunia and Lukasz Fabianski have both been prone to error in recent times.

Reina was purchased from Villarreal five years ago for a fee of £6m. He missed both legs of the Reds' Europa League 4-0 aggregate win over Rabotnicki, after only returning to training on Monday, following his World Cup success with Spain.

Such a big-money offer for an established player at a rival club would be a change from Wenger's normal transfer market strategy, although few can doubt the Spanish shot stopper's credentials.

Cesc Fabregas Pledge 100% Focus Playing For Arsenal


Cesc Fabregas has put an end to the longest transfer saga of the year by revealing he will not be leaving Arsenal for Barcelona this summer.

The 23-year-old midfielder, who has been subjected to an unprecedented charm offensive from the Spanish giants, admitted that he was keen on a move to his hometown club - but insisted that he respected Arsenal's decision to turn down two bids for him.

Fabregas said: "Firstly, I would like to apologise to all the Arsenal fans for not speaking sooner about my future but I've not known what I was going to do until this moment.

"I cannot deny that joining a club like Barcelona was not an attractive move for me. This was the club I learned my football, my hometown, where all my friends and family are and a club I have always dreamed of playing.

"There's not many players in the world who would not want to play for Barcelona.

"I have had many conversations with Arsene Wenger, both in person and over the telephone in the last few months. And although the contents of those conversations will remain private the conclusion is that Barcelona have had two formal offers rejected by Arsenal.

"I am a professional and fully understand that is Arsenal's prerogative not to sell me.

"I owe a lot to the club, the manager and the fans and I will respect their decision and concentrate on the new season ahead with Arsenal.

"I can assure all the fans that now the negotiations are ended I will be 100 per cent focused on playing for Arsenal.

"I am an Arsenal player and as soon as I step out on to the pitch this is the only club I will be thinking about. I am looking forward to the start of the season and putting all of this speculation behind me."

Friday, August 6, 2010

Fabregas Confirms His Loyalty To Arsenal

Arsenal have won the race to keep captain Cesc Fabregas at the club.

Fabregas has been at the centre of a summer-long conflict between the Gunners and Spanish champions Barcelona, who had a £30million bid rejected for the star in June.

Barca president Sandro Rosell and the club's players have conducted a very public attempt to try to persuade Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger that he should allow Fabregas to return to the club where he began his career.

Nevertheless, Arsenal's chances of keeping the 23-year-old received a big boost on Thursday when the Spaniard returned to the Gunners' north London home for a training session in front of fans for the club's members' day.

Fabregas, who along with Robin van Persie had been given extra time off following their World Cup exploits, also lined up alongside his team-mates for the official team photo.

Former Gunners captain Kenny Sansom, who was a special guest at Thursday's event, is convinced that Fabregas is staying at the club.

He told Press Association Sport: "I've had a chat with Arsene Wenger and he told me he's going to stay, which is great news.

"It's a good day for the club, with all the fans being here to see Cesc back here, they all look up to him and it's great news that he's stopping."

Fabregas received a standing ovation from around 7,000 supporters at the Emirates.

The midfielder seemed at ease with his team-mates throughout the 90-minute session, and waved to the crowd occasionally.

Former Arsenal goalkeeper Bob Wilson, who spent 11 years at the club, is also confident that Fabregas will stay.

"Today is the clearest indication you can get that he will stay," the 68-year-old said.

"If you look at the team photo for the 2010-2011 season, he is at the front of the picture.

"There will be an announcement soon that tells everyone that Cesc Fabregas is going to stay at the Emirates Stadium for this season, and for maybe longer."

Fabregas is thought to have told Wenger he wanted to leave Arsenal to return to his boyhood club before he left to join Spain's victorious World Cup campaign in South Africa.

Barca, who had have not made another official bid since seeing their first effort fail in June, recently had to take out a 150million euro loan to pay their players, fuelling speculation that they would not be able to afford to buy Fabregas, especially after they parted with more than £20million to sign Valencia's David Villa this summer.

Wilson criticised Barcelona's attempts to sign Fabregas and believes the Spanish club severely undervalued the Arsenal skipper.

He added: "I think everyone have been worried and everyone have seen that the way that Barcelona has handled things has been totally wrong.

"People have been comparing the possibility of Cesc going with Ronaldo going last year. Real Madrid paid £80million for Ronaldo. They over-paid.

"Barcelona at this moment have offered a very paltry amount for a player who is one of the greatest players on earth."

After overseeing his development since arriving as a 15-year-old, Wilson believes that Fabregas owes Arsenal at least another season at the club.

"I don't think we need to tell him that everyone at the club loves him," said Wilson.

"He has a second father at the club in Arsene Wenger and I think Arsene will be able to get his head around the fact that he is an Arsenal player and not a Barcelona player.

"Cesc owes a lot to this club in the same way that this club is very appreciative of everything that he gives to it."

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Gunner's WAGS : Tatiana Golovin

Arsenal player Samir Nasri dates with French tennis star Tatiana Golovin. Tatiana Golovin (born January 25, 1988) is an inactive Russian-born French professional tennis player. She is best known for winning the 2004 French Open mixed doubles event with Richard Gasquet, and also for reaching the singles quarterfinal at the 2006 U.S. Open, losing to the eventual champion Maria Sharapova. The 22-year-old's babe highest singles ranking to date is 12.



Laurent Koscielny Can't Wait For Premier League Debut

New Arsenal defender Laurent Koscielny is itching to make his first appearance in the Premier League later this month.

The Frenchman, acquired from French side Lorient for £8.5 million this summer, formed an impressive partnership with Thomas Vermaelen in Saturday’s 1-1 draw against AC Milan in the Emirates Cup.

Koscielny also made a late appearance in the 3-2 victory over Celtic that helped the Gunners win the Emirates Cup.

Despite the triumph in the pre-season competition, Koscielny admitted that it is nothing compared to what his Premier League debut will feel like.

"In France I watched the Premier League a lot,” Koscielny told The Sun.

“It is a very physical league, with a fast and intense pace. I used to follow the big four of English football — Manchester United, Arsenal, Liverpool and Chelsea.

"I love the atmosphere here with the supporters. Even when you lose, the supporters are always behind you to lift you and take you to a higher level."