‘Loyalty is unwavering in good times and bad times.’ I am not a religious person myself, but that potent quote found in the Proverbs book of the Bible has flashed across my mind in what is warming up to be a long drag through the mud for Gooners worldwide, because;
- Our club is going to notoriously dither along with incoming transfers which could be solved quickly with just increasing bids by a few millions which THE CLUB CAN AFFORD.
- The potential loss of marquee talents in the squad. (I.e. Sanchez, Bellerin, Ozil.)
Arsenal for about a decade now has floundered during the season, giving fans, who spend their hard earned money to follow the club heart and headaches never felt before. You may think the when the season ends during the summer, fans will get respite with the club making attempts to cure our apparent maladies with proper, timely purchases, but no, this is never the case with the Great Red and White, management seems to derive immense pleasure from torturing fans with the news of insulting bids ultimately turned down.
This summer has started just like others, in the past with rumors circulating at the same speed at which Piers Morgan tweets, “Wenger Out,’ giving fans hope, fruitless hope. This transfer season has brought about a conundrum we thought the club would have learned from when Samir Nasri and R.V.P forced their ways out of the club to opposite sides of Manchester about half a decade ago, with Sanchez and Ozil in the last 12 months of their respective deals with the clubs. If one seeks a club which makes mistakes and repeats them in the blink of an eye all one needs to do is cast their glance to Arsenal, with our lot of spineless board members.
Bar the Alexis-Ozil situation, one other duo which has found itself in transfer rumblings for a while now include the dashing 30 year old Frenchman, Olivier Giroud and one young Spanish upstart Hector Bellerin. Hector who was signed in 2011 from Barca’s famed academy, which now is losing talent left, right and center, came to prominence about two years ago after he was admittedly aided in his conversion from attacking winger to proper full back by Assistant Manager Steve Bould.
Bellerin’s rise has been quite astronomical especially two seasons ago, but he hit a road block last season in his development, when the rumors of a return to Barcelona started. Last season his performances were not at the elite level we were used to from the young prodigy as change of hairstyles seemingly took precedence.
He has made his name on the continent as one the most talented full backs and fans have quietly harbored hopes he would be the ‘right fullback version’ of Ashley Cole, but one thing fans did not envision him sharing with ‘Cashley’ was leaving the club high and dry, or at least trying to, at a juncture in the club’s journey when key players such as him are most needed to prevent any serious regression. Whilst, the player himself has not come out to emphatically say whether he is going to stay to help pull the club back to its glory days or leave the club which more or less provided an environment for him to reach his current level.
The failure of the move of Fabregas should serve as a warning to any player who is lured by the ‘love of Catalonia’ especially to a young player like Bellerin who will not be given chances to grow in the lineup like he has been afforded severally in North London should his from be hampered just a little bit. Loyalty in football nowadays is fickle, in this age of ‘mercenary football’ where the highest bidder is the most respected. Qualms may be raised about Wenger and his several faults but one that has never lacked and may even have been detrimental has been his loyalty to his players. He has taken fire several times for players who are undeserving of it due to their ill performances but has hardly thrown any under the bus even when it was expected.
On the other hand is the man who scored potentially the best goal of our season, Olivier Giroud. The man came off the bench so many more times than his form deserved and like a good soldier kept his head up and gave his all to the cause despite the sudden demotion. With the impending signing of potentially the club’s new leading striker Alexander Lacazette in a few days, the rumor mills have been rife with gossip of deals for Olivier being placed by Everton and West Ham. The big target man has exuded nothing but class during this period even though we are entering a World Cup year and playing time is essential to make the plane for your country. It would make little sense to lose this player who is not as bad as he is made out to be, as he could provide a lot for the club in what is going to be a grueling season. Giroud unlike his ‘little brother’ from Spain came out on the Arsenal Weekly podcast to state where his loyalty lies, unequivocally.
“I won a few titles in my career, that is an important thing, but there is another thing which is important for me, and that is that people see you as a loyal warrior on the pitch—that you always give your best for the team, and that’s why I want to carry on my good journey at Arsenal and I always want to give my best. “I would love to win another title, or maybe more until the end of my contract. The motivation is here, always doing your best to make your family proud.”
With three years to run on his deal, two less than Bellerin’s does, he could seek and be in a better position to force a move, especially after a season where he loyally stayed on the bench and came on when called upon to deliver the goods with nary a bad word uttered. Like I said, Bellerin has not yet said anything about staying or leaving, rather allowing ‘friends’ such as Denis Suarez to do so for him, but if push comes to shove, and with a long term contract in the books, the club can and should play hardball and not allow him to dictate where and when he wants to leave the club which greatly aided his development. It’s about time Arsene and co put their feet down with players trying to force moves away from the club, especially ones on long term deals.
One more piece of advice, FU.KING RENEW PLAYER’S CONTRACTS BEFORE THEY RUN OUT! Cheers. 🙂
I’m a 20 year old from Ghana in West Africa. I strongly believe I fell in love with The Arsenal in 2000 after watching that heartbreaking loss in Liverpool, thanks to the now pestiferous pundit Michael Owen. Or maybe, I love The Arsenal because Gunner rhymes with the name of my country. Shrug. I am an avid supporter of Monsieur Wenger and still see him as a visionary. Also, I believe the result must not always trump the means and glory days on the European stage are just a few steps away. Thanks to all who take time out to visit and read.