Mesut Ozil: Welcome to Arsenal

My thoughts on the new record Arsenal signing.

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Matchday 1 Preview: Arsenal vs Aston Villa – 17/08/13

It is finally upon us, my friends. Another season is about to begin. Every team will start from scratch, lined up evenly at the line. Who will hold their run perfectly to the finish? Manchester United? City? Chelsea? The might Gunners? or will it be an underdog, perhaps a Newcastle? or even Everton? After Matchday 1, we’ll all have a better idea. *notice how I didn’t consider Tottenham at all*

Arsenal-v-Aston-Villa

Arsenal will grace the Emirates Stadium for their first match of the 2013/2014 Barclays Premier League campaign, with many people interested to see how an Arsenal side with ultimately no new faces, come up against Aston Villa, who are lead by the dangerous Christian Benteke.

Past Meetings between the two

  • 23rd Feb 2013 – Arsenal 2 defeated Aston Villa 1
  • 24th Nov 2012 – Aston Villa 0 drew with Arsenal 0
  • 24 March 2012 – Arsenal 3 defeated Aston Villa 0
  • 29 Jan 2012 – Arsenal 3 defeated Aston Villa 2

You can see from the previous meetings that the matches are often close, with exception to the 3-0 win to Arsenal in March of 2012. It’s either been a 1 goal win to Arsenal or a draw. This time around, anything can happen. The first day of the season always offers plenty. This time last season Arsenal played out a frustrating 0-0 draw against Sunderland at the Emirates. Lets hope they aren’t frustrated again.

Key Players

For Arsenal, there’s no doubt that if Santi Cazorla hits his passes, they’ll win. This man single footedly (I’m so funny) won the match for Arsenal last time around, scoring a classy brace. If he continues his form from last season, they’ll score a few goals.

For Villa, it has to be the man of the moment, Christian Benteke. He saved Villa from relegation last season, scoring around 16 goals to secure another season in the top flight. Surprisingly, he hasn’t been prized away from Villa Park, considering many top teams were seriously considering him, one of which being Arsenal.

Prediction

It’s going to be a tight game, but I think at home, with the crowd, and a solid preseason, Arsenal will continue to attack and get reward.

Arsenal 2  Aston Villa 0

Follow the FB page Arsenal News and Match Reviews 🙂

Twitter: @AFCGunnerNews

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Arsenal News June 19 2013 – 2013/2014 Fixture Released! (included in post)

Okay, first thing’s first… let’s look at the damn fixture and then dissect it!

Arsenal’s 2013/2014 EPL Fixture

August
17 Aston Villa (H)
24 Fulham (A)
31 Tottenham (H)
September
14 Sunderland (A)
21 Stoke (H)
28 Swansea (A)
October
5 West Brom (A)
19 Norwich (H)
26 Crystal Palace (A)
November
2 Liverpool (H)
9 Man Utd (A)
23 Southampton (H)
30 Cardiff (A)
December
3 Hull (H)
7 Everton (H)
14 Man City (A)
21 Chelsea (H)
26 West Ham (A)
28 Newcastle (A)
January
1 Cardiff (H)
11 Aston Villa (A)
18 Fulham (H)
28 Southampton (A)
February
1 Crystal Palace (H)
8 Liverpool (A)
11 Man Utd (H)
22 Sunderland (H)
March
1 Stoke (A)
8 Swansea (H)
15 Tottenham (A)
22 Chelsea (A)
29 Man City (H)
April
5 Everton (A)
12 West Ham (H)
19 Hull (A)
26 Newcastle (H)
May
3 West Brom (H)
11 Norwich (A)

Dissection 

Now after looking at that fixture, all Arsenal fans should be incredibly happy with the first few months of the season. On last year’s late form, the first 9 games look very winnable, until we face Manchester United on November 9th. It’s a much better fixture to last I think, with a spread of big games. Last season there was a period where Arsenal played against Chelsea, Manchester City and Liverpool all within a 4 or 5 weeks. Very tough fixture there. Also, the last 6 games look great, coming up against Everton, West Ham, Hull, Newcastle, West Brom and Norwich. So around 15 games of the 38 game season look very winnable, with a large portion of games in the middle of the season crucial in deciding whether we’ll take the next step and challenge for the title, or just linger thereabouts but not close enough to scare the big boys. Only time will tell.

Comment below and let me know what you think of the fixture, or just leave your thoughts on Facebook or Twitter (@jakesopinion1), I’ll reply to all as long as they’re reasonable!

Also vote to tell me which big game you’re looking forward to most

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Arsenal News June 12 2013 – Arsenal Close In On £56m Trio

Fellaini, Higuain and Grenier. Those are the three that Arsene Wenger has set his sights on. Will he get them? Only time will tell. Sources say that Arsene Wenger has been given the green light by the Arsenal board to spend and spend big to lure big name players to the Emirates, with the hopes of toppling Manchester United, Chelsea and Manchester City to bring the title back to North London. There have been many rumours circling about a number of players, however the players most consistently linked to the Gunners have been the three named above, removing Jovetic of course.

Signing soon?

Signing soon?

Fabregas is uncertain, Jovetic will probably go to Juventus, Wanyama also uncertain and Gundogan hasn’t said much either, so the three above look the most likely. Is that a good thing for Arsenal? Do I believe the likes of Fellaini, the tall towering Belgium, Higuain the consistent scorer and Grenier the up and comer are enough to launch the Gunners into a title fight, taking them from middleweight to heavyweight? Yes, yes I do.

Fellaini, to me, is the most important player of the three. He can play all over the field, tall enough as a DM or CB and attacking enough that he can play as a CM or CAM when need be. He would gel the entire team, becoming that connector between defence and attack, something that at sometimes Arsenal lacked last season.

Higuain’s goalscoring rate says everything to Arsenal fans – when he plays, he usually scores. In the past 5 seasons (or so) only Messi and Ronaldo (I’ve heard) have had a better scoring rate than Higuain, which is incredible. To me, anyone in the same goalscoring league as those two, to me, is a massive steal at a price of £25m.

Now for the youngster in Grenier. He has openly expressed his interest in Arsenal and proven that on field he can be quite the creative midfielder who loves a shot at goal. No doubt he would add some depth to the Arsenal squad, something it’s lacked since the Henry and Viera days.

If Arsene Wenger can make these three signings, plus maybe an extra defender, Arsenal can win the title next season.

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Arsenal News June 10 2013 – Arsenal to complete £62m deals for Higuain, Gundogan and Bender

Arsene Wenger is set to break spending records this week as he looks to complete the purchases of Higuain Gundogan and Bender for a collective total of £62m (25,20 and 17). This would be an unbelievable achievement of Arsenal and Arsene Wenger, as the maximum they have spent on a player in the past has been £15m on Arshavin a few years ago, which today, is a minimum for clubs competing for trophies. Also, don’t worry Arsenal fans, there will still be enough money for the possible purchases of Marouane Fellaini and Wayne Rooney, who are also both strongly linked to the North London club. 

Gundogan, Higuain and Bender

Gundogan, Higuain and Bender

Stevan Jovetic has opened discussions with Italian giants Juventus, as he has made it clear he prefers the Italian side over the English side.

Gundogan was a big part of why Borussia Dortmund have become a powerhouse team over the past two seasons, and with the departure of Gotze, Arsene Wenger has looked a bit deeper in the team to discover other possible signings. Defenders are also still being considered by Arsene Wenger, but no doubt right now the focus is on strengthening the midfield depth and attacking power of his side. 

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Arsenal News June 7 2013 – Fellaini to Arsenal for £22 million?

Arsenal have reportedly activated Marouane Fellaini’s release clause by bidding £22 million for the player. Everton, just getting used to life with Roberto Martinez has a tough battle to ensure the Belgium international remains at Goodison Park next season. Arsenal Chief Executive Ivan Gazidis has recently said that Arsenal are now capable of competing with the big boys in the transfer window, and if the club were to sign a player like Fellaini, it would prove him right. He also went on to say that Arsenal could easily buy a player worth £25m and pay £200k in wages if needed (coincidentally what Wayne Rooney would cost).

Arsenal's first big signing?

Arsenal’s first big signing?

Fellaini is at the peak age of 25, strong, mobile, capable of stabilising a defence while also bolstering an attack, looks to be the perfect midfield signing for Arsenal. Champions League football would also be something that would attract him to Arsenal, where he may once again line up beside his former teammate, Mikel Arteta.

In other transfer news

Aston Villa have labelled Christian Benteke the £40 million man, which they hope will deter Arsenal’s interest of the star striker.

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Arsenal News June 6 2013 – Alaba on his way?

Arsenal are lining up a £10 million bid to snatch acrobatic left back David Alaba from Europe’s top team, Bayern Munich. Reports circulating have said that the player is starting to become frustrated with his lack of matches in the midfield, where his preferred position is as a DM. Arsene Wenger and Arsenal may be able to offer Alaba that opportunity. Alaba has serious pace, excellent foot skills, a solid tackle and an eye for goal (when he’s near them) and at the perfect age of 20, he looks a perfect transfer target for Arsene Wenger.

alaba-1324373610

In other news, Arenal are readying a bid of a £5 million bid for Freiburg defender Matthias Ginter, who is seen as a major prospect in Germany and may replace Per Mertesacker in the German side one day. 

Arsenal could also splash the cash on Juventus defensive midfielder Paul Pogba, who is unsettled at the Italian giants after moving on a free transfer from Manchester United last season. With more money being available after the release of Arshavin, Squillaci and Denilson, the £17 million price tag should be easy to meet.

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Arsenal trio to leave

TOKNOWTHEGAME.COM

Andrey Arshavin, Denilson and Sebastien Squillaci will leave the Club when they come to the end of their contracts on June 30, and Arsenal would like to take this opportunity to thank them for their contribution and wish them well for the future.

Arshavin made 144 appearances for Arsenal, scoring 31 times over the course of five seasons. He netted four times in the 4-4 draw with Liverpool at Anfield in April 2009 during an excellent debut season in England. Despite limited first-team opportunities in recent times, he has continued to contribute, providing five assists and one goal in his 11 appearances during 2012/13.

A vastly experienced player, the 32-year-old has 74 caps for Russia, for whom he played a key role at Euro 2008 and 2012. He was named Russian Footballer of the Year in 2006.

Denilson, who joined from Sao Paulo in 2006, has spent the past two seasons on loan at…

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