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    (Original post by Schichtoe)
    I think at least in part that this is due to the process of settling in to the EPL. It's definitely a more physical league, and he has the attributes to do well in it, but it is a change in mentality which takes time. A lot of great strikers, including Henry and RvP, had shaky first years. What I do think is that in his first season his link up play was excellent and that, at the end of the season when he got sent off and had the suspension for those 3 games, we really missed him. You could notice that without him there wasn't really a focal point to the attack so much. Even without him scoring so much, he was doing a good job of creating play off him (I think Walcott particularly enjoys this as, with defenders being sucked on to Giroud, there is space behind and Giroud's flick-ons and links have been very good). If he's adding goals to his game, and pre-season definitely suggests he is, then he can be a very good striker indeed.

    What most of us are saying, I think, is that Giroud is a good player getting better, and we all expect him to have a better season this year than last, and I think a lot of people who don't follow Arsenal so closely don't quite get this. However, I think we all agree that he alone isn't going to get the job done. We need strength in depth, and we also just need a bit of exceptional quality in the squad. Our truly exceptional player is Wilshere. A couple more of these, and a Suarez would classify as that, could give us title chances I think. I still see this as being a transitional year. If we can be in the running for it, then even not winning will give the boys great belief and experience for the year after, particularly if we can strengthen again. What's killing us just now is that we're not even close and I think a lot of belief has been lost inside in the club. A couple marquee signings might just give us back that belief - certainly seems so from what I've read from the players in the press over the last month.
    Well I don’t rate him as much as others seem to based on last season and that’s because for every good flick and assist last season there was a horror touch as well and times his technique looked appalling with games where the ball would just bounce off him and nothing stuck, he fluffed a fair amount of chances too and spent games getting bullied by the defenders moaning at the ref after every header he lost.

    At times when he’s on top of his game and its working he looks a formidable striker but he never really exhibited the physicality you know he’s capable of when you look at his frame, a high level of finishing or good technical ability on a consistent enough basis for me last year.

    Now it’s probably fair to say that I am probably unfairly comparing him to RVP which clouds my judgment a bit but still I stand by the fact he didn’t look anything special last season to me. If he can show a higher level of technique consistently and bring in a few more goals in then he will be a very good player and it sounds like he has been doing that in the pre season but to do it in the premier league will be a whole other story so we just have to wait and see, as you say it takes time to adjust for some players so maybe this season he will take off and I hope he does but I’m gonna have to see him do it
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    (Original post by Zürich)
    Soldado would be a complete panic buy He's 28 years old and not going to take us to the next level. Heard they're paying 25m which is more than RVP cost...

    I know alot of Arsenal fans have the attitude that 'we must buy someone, anyone!'' but if we cant get a player who can take us significantly closer to a title then I'd prefer we just let Giroud have a go and bring in some outstanding midfielders.


    ---

    This does beg the question of where exactly Spurs get the dosh from? 25m already this summer with no CL football and limited commercial/match day streams. And they've been doing it for a decade, theyve outspent us by about 4 times IIRC which is crazy. Their chairman is loaded though so I'd actually call Spurs, like Liverpool, as a semi-sugardaddy club. Only Utd and AFC genuinely pay their own way.
    I don't think he'd be a panic buy. 28 isn't exactly old and he's better than Giroud. I heard closer to 20M and people don't seem to understand RVP was in the final year of his contract, he wanted to leave and was injury prone.

    Also, we must do it one step at a time, we're not gonna get a mega buy like messi, any improvement is still an improvement.
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    (Original post by KD35)
    I don't think he'd be a panic buy. 28 isn't exactly old and he's better than Giroud. I heard closer to 20M and people don't seem to understand RVP was in the final year of his contract, he wanted to leave and was injury prone.

    Also, we must do it one step at a time, we're not gonna get a mega buy like messi, any improvement is still an improvement.
    Disagree, he's is nowhere near good enough to get us a title and even if he did improve the team, he'd need replacing before we had a chance to build on him whilst spunking 20m+. Better to pay 50m for Suarez than that tbh because at least you're getting top drawer and will have a player to build around for 4/5 years.


    If not then I'd prefer we didnt buy at all. I'm impressed by good players, not big price tags.
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    (Original post by KD35)
    I don't think he'd be a panic buy. 28 isn't exactly old and he's better than Giroud. I heard closer to 20M and people don't seem to understand RVP was in the final year of his contract, he wanted to leave and was injury prone.

    Also, we must do it one step at a time, we're not gonna get a mega buy like messi, any improvement is still an improvement.
    £25m for slight improvement is silly, We could buy Higuain for that price and get a better striker who offers something different
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    This post on Twitter by John Cross (The Mirror) made me laugh.

    Barcelona have written to #mufc saying Fabregas not for sale - and to please leave him alone. Ha ha. Imagine the irony.
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    (Original post by Schichtoe)
    I think at least in part that this is due to the process of settling in to the EPL. It's definitely a more physical league, and he has the attributes to do well in it, but it is a change in mentality which takes time. A lot of great strikers, including Henry and RvP, had shaky first years. What I do think is that in his first season his link up play was excellent and that, at the end of the season when he got sent off and had the suspension for those 3 games, we really missed him. You could notice that without him there wasn't really a focal point to the attack so much. Even without him scoring so much, he was doing a good job of creating play off him (I think Walcott particularly enjoys this as, with defenders being sucked on to Giroud, there is space behind and Giroud's flick-ons and links have been very good). If he's adding goals to his game, and pre-season definitely suggests he is, then he can be a very good striker indeed.

    What most of us are saying, I think, is that Giroud is a good player getting better, and we all expect him to have a better season this year than last, and I think a lot of people who don't follow Arsenal so closely don't quite get this. However, I think we all agree that he alone isn't going to get the job done. We need strength in depth, and we also just need a bit of exceptional quality in the squad. Our truly exceptional player is Wilshere. A couple more of these, and a Suarez would classify as that, could give us title chances I think. I still see this as being a transitional year. If we can be in the running for it, then even not winning will give the boys great belief and experience for the year after, particularly if we can strengthen again. What's killing us just now is that we're not even close and I think a lot of belief has been lost inside in the club. A couple marquee signings might just give us back that belief - certainly seems so from what I've read from the players in the press over the last month.
    Cazorla.
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    (Original post by sevchenko)
    £25m for slight improvement is silly, We could buy Higuain for that price and get a better striker who offers something different
    No you couldn't... That's why he's off to Napoli for £32m :P I've never really been that impressed by Soldado when I've watched him play, but he did get 24 goals in La Liga last season, so idk.
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    (Original post by Zürich)
    Definitely not worth paying 30m for Higuain, but I'd still quite like him at <25m. If we're going to have to pay 30m then we're just as well going that bit extra and getting a guaranteed world class striker in Suarez.

    I think if we end up with neither then we wont sign a top striker at all and instead try to get a top CF/AM in, simply because there are so few strikers around.
    Well, perhaps someone like Bernard is being targeted along the same line of thought: if we had a creative winger, that gives us multiple points of creative focus with Cazorla in the middle, which in my opinion would raise Giroud's game significantly (as opposed to when you have much more functional players like Podolski and Walcott providing support; not that they can't carve out assists, but they're much more reliant on a system than someone like Cazorla - they'll struggle when the rest of the team are struggling and Cazorla's being significantly closed down, and as a consequence Giroud gets next to no service. Wilshere and Rosicky are both able to provide a counterpoint to that to an extent, but they're not really players built for that role in my opinion). So yeah, I'd like to see a great striker come in but I wouldn't be too surprised if Wenger went down another route and it wouldn't be the end of the world.


    (Original post by Schichtoe)
    Also interested to know what you guys make of the pre-season performance so far if you've been following it. If you haven't, all the games are available in their entirety on Arsenal Player for free.

    My main thoughts from pre-season so far:

    - Giroud looks like a much better striker than I think most fans currently give him credit for. Yes, I'd love to see a world-class striker arrive at the club, but so far as I'm concerned we've got one in the making there already.
    - Who the hell is Zelalem and is it just me or is he amazing?
    - Is Gnabry ready for the first team or would he benefit from a season's loan at a decent club? (Remember, Wilshere at Bolton etc.)
    I was a little cynical about how good he actually was at 14, but I started to become convinced when he starting training with the first-team at 15 and now he really looks ready to burst onto the scene.

    Regarding Gnabry, I'd say he's just about ready to go on loan. I have to say, I'm not hugely convinced about him myself. He's clearly talented, but he seems to have a knack of taking the more difficult path to something, or not releasing the ball when he should. I hope he improves on those fronts, but at this point in time I think a straight line on his development graph would lead to him becoming something like Nani.
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    wouldn't mind taking a gamble on shaqiri, not sure if guardiola will play him a lot next season tbh
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    Tottenham are at it. Although it's not wise to panic buy and be patient, we need to step up.

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    (Original post by Zürich)

    This does beg the question of where exactly Spurs get the dosh from? 25m already this summer with no CL football and limited commercial/match day streams. And they've been doing it for a decade, theyve outspent us by about 4 times IIRC which is crazy. Their chairman is loaded though so I'd actually call Spurs, like Liverpool, as a semi-sugardaddy club. Only Utd and AFC genuinely pay their own way.
    I would assume the money is coming from the new TV deals? Although I expected them to save that money for their stadium to be honest.

    None of their players have made me go " wow, I wish we had signed him" so I'm not too bothered to be honest ( as long as we buy quality players of course)




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    (Original post by Abiraleft)
    I was a little cynical about how good he actually was at 14, but I started to become convinced when he starting training with the first-team at 15 and now he really looks ready to burst onto the scene.

    Regarding Gnabry, I'd say he's just about ready to go on loan. I have to say, I'm not hugely convinced about him myself. He's clearly talented, but he seems to have a knack of taking the more difficult path to something, or not releasing the ball when he should. I hope he improves on those fronts, but at this point in time I think a straight line on his development graph would lead to him becoming something like Nani.
    You've obviously been following his progress a little more closely than me. I was kind of aware of him as a player but it's only with this pre-season that I've noticed he's got a rare talent. His ability to see the pass is particularly encouraging, because I feel you can't really teach that and it's that natural ability which will define the top, top players. It doesn't surprise me that the hype machine has kicked to overdrive with Fabregas comparisons.

    I agree regarding Gnabry. I don't think he's ready for our first team. There is definitely a lot of ability there, and flashes of talent, but I think you're right in that he tries to cut inside most times and is frequently predictable. Needs to supplement his game, and first team experience will do that. Wouldn't surprise me to see him go out on loan.

    I'm definitely anxious about the CB situation. With Verm out for a couple months (so I am reading), the knock to Kosc highlights the absence of depth there for us. I know some on this thread have been delighted with Sagna at CB but I don't think that's the answer - firstly, he's our best RB so if he's playing we're stronger if he's playing there... It's artificial depth. Let's assume a cup run to at least the Quarters, and presume we get out of the group stages of the CL (both things we should be hoping for) - the players are going to have to play in excess of 50 games next season. Without the ability to rotate players in positions and retain strength when we do so, we can't be competitive over a long distance...
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    higuain to Napoli for 30-40 mill

    that's a rip off imo, not worth it.

    so since suarez will move to Madrid, where does that leave us?

    just hope we don't end up wish an old washed up striker from a rival club to take on loan.

    if we ended up getting someone like Jackson Martinez id be over the moon.

    oh and spuds are finalising the deal for soldado which is disappointing
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    (Original post by Zürich)

    This does beg the question of where exactly Spurs get the dosh from? 25m already this summer with no CL football and limited commercial/match day streams. And they've been doing it for a decade, theyve outspent us by about 4 times IIRC which is crazy. Their chairman is loaded though so I'd actually call Spurs, like Liverpool, as a semi-sugardaddy club. Only Utd and AFC genuinely pay their own way.
    Looked it up and spurs only spend £5m net a season on average, which doesn't sound unreasonable. Liverpool spend £14m.
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    (Original post by Schichtoe)
    I think at least in part that this is due to the process of settling in to the EPL. It's definitely a more physical league, and he has the attributes to do well in it, but it is a change in mentality which takes time. A lot of great strikers, including Henry and RvP, had shaky first years. What I do think is that in his first season his link up play was excellent and that, at the end of the season when he got sent off and had the suspension for those 3 games, we really missed him. You could notice that without him there wasn't really a focal point to the attack so much. Even without him scoring so much, he was doing a good job of creating play off him (I think Walcott particularly enjoys this as, with defenders being sucked on to Giroud, there is space behind and Giroud's flick-ons and links have been very good). If he's adding goals to his game, and pre-season definitely suggests he is, then he can be a very good striker indeed.

    What most of us are saying, I think, is that Giroud is a good player getting better, and we all expect him to have a better season this year than last, and I think a lot of people who don't follow Arsenal so closely don't quite get this. However, I think we all agree that he alone isn't going to get the job done. We need strength in depth, and we also just need a bit of exceptional quality in the squad. Our truly exceptional player is Wilshere. A couple more of these, and a Suarez would classify as that, could give us title chances I think. I still see this as being a transitional year. If we can be in the running for it, then even not winning will give the boys great belief and experience for the year after, particularly if we can strengthen again. What's killing us just now is that we're not even close and I think a lot of belief has been lost inside in the club. A couple marquee signings might just give us back that belief - certainly seems so from what I've read from the players in the press over the last month.
    Sorry, also meant to reply to this earlier. Regarding Giroud's adaptation, I think possibly more significant than his move from Ligue 1 to the Premiership has been his move from a 'smaller' club to one like Arsenal, who would be regarded as a big scalp by all teams in the league. I made a long post regarding this at some point last season when we were being linked heavily to Benteke, but essentially, the way a player would be able to play in a smaller team - where he might be the focus of attention and more importantly where he'd get significantly more space to play - is very different from what he has to face when he's at a more reputable club, where he's being closed down very quickly and has to think on his feet. People say that Giroud is technically limited, and that's true, but what makes this more of an issue than it should be is that Giroud is still adapting to the tempo of play at Arsenal: there are some very good players out there who are not the most proficient technically - most obviously Muller, but also players more similar to Giroud like Gomez and Huntelaar, who have great finishing technique but have to rely on other important instincts to be able to make use of them - Giroud has some fantastic off-the-ball awareness and movement, and when he begins to get used to the way of playing, he should be able to use that to great effect.


    (Original post by Schichtoe)
    You've obviously been following his progress a little more closely than me. I was kind of aware of him as a player but it's only with this pre-season that I've noticed he's got a rare talent. His ability to see the pass is particularly encouraging, because I feel you can't really teach that and it's that natural ability which will define the top, top players. It doesn't surprise me that the hype machine has kicked to overdrive with Fabregas comparisons.

    I agree regarding Gnabry. I don't think he's ready for our first team. There is definitely a lot of ability there, and flashes of talent, but I think you're right in that he tries to cut inside most times and is frequently predictable. Needs to supplement his game, and first team experience will do that. Wouldn't surprise me to see him go out on loan.

    I'm definitely anxious about the CB situation. With Verm out for a couple months (so I am reading), the knock to Kosc highlights the absence of depth there for us. I know some on this thread have been delighted with Sagna at CB but I don't think that's the answer - firstly, he's our best RB so if he's playing we're stronger if he's playing there... It's artificial depth. Let's assume a cup run to at least the Quarters, and presume we get out of the group stages of the CL (both things we should be hoping for) - the players are going to have to play in excess of 50 games next season. Without the ability to rotate players in positions and retain strength when we do so, we can't be competitive over a long distance...
    Well, I think I heard about him around the same time most people here did - someone posted the summary of a conversation Wenger had had with Diamond level club members or something (?) where Wenger said the most promising player in the academy was a young German-American (I think Zelalem grew up in the US or something like that) and I think someone said even then that he was like Fabregas, but faster. :p:

    With Gnabry, I think we can expect him to stay for the first half of the season and get some gametime in the cups and maybe Champions League. Wenger said last season that we could expect to see a lot of him, so I would think that promise will carry over to this season. I think it would be quite good for him to have a loan-spell where he'd get some regular gametime, though.

    I do agree with you about the centre-back situation. I would have liked for Miquel to step up and take responsibility for fourth-choice, but it doesn't look like Wenger has a great amount of belief in him. I don't think Williams would be a bad signing at all in that respect, but I'm not sure it would be the best move for him at this stage of his career - we probably wouldn't need him for more than a couple of seasons, when the time would be more right to get a promising younger defender. Someone a bit older and out of favour might be a decent shout, but I'm not sure who's available who fits that description.

    Also, have you guys seen this?



    Loving the friendliness and sense of fraternity amongst the team at the tour. I know it's been posted here already, but if you haven seen it already:



    I thought it was incredibly heartwarming and a really nice gesture. :yep:

    Oh, also, Bernard was asked about his Arsenal link ahead of the Copa Libertadores Final second-leg (tomorrow). SkySports have put up the headline 'Bernard denies Arsenal link' but form what I can see, what he's really done is just refused to talk about it:

    "I don't want to talk about this in a week as important as this one," he told Superesportes.

    "I want to talk about the game and I don't want to be impolite or ignore it in any way.

    "I don't know what will happen after the game. My future at Atletico Mineiro will be in the board's hands from Thursday onwards."
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    (Original post by Abiraleft)
    People say that Giroud is technically limited, and that's true, but what makes this more of an issue than it should be is that Giroud is still adapting to the tempo of play at Arsenal: there are some very good players out there who are not the most proficient technically - most obviously Muller, but also players more similar to Giroud like Gomez and Huntelaar, who have great finishing technique but have to rely on other important instincts to be able to make use of them - Giroud has some fantastic off-the-ball awareness and movement, and when he begins to get used to the way of playing, he should be able to use that to great effect.

    With Gnabry, I think we can expect him to stay for the first half of the season and get some gametime in the cups and maybe Champions League. Wenger said last season that we could expect to see a lot of him, so I would think that promise will carry over to this season. I think it would be quite good for him to have a loan-spell where he'd get some regular gametime, though.

    I do agree with you about the centre-back situation. I would have liked for Miquel to step up and take responsibility for fourth-choice, but it doesn't look like Wenger has a great amount of belief in him. I don't think Williams would be a bad signing at all in that respect, but I'm not sure it would be the best move for him at this stage of his career - we probably wouldn't need him for more than a couple of seasons, when the time would be more right to get a promising younger defender. Someone a bit older and out of favour might be a decent shout, but I'm not sure who's available who fits that description.

    Oh, also, Bernard was asked about his Arsenal link ahead of the Copa Libertadores Final second-leg (tomorrow). SkySports have put up the headline 'Bernard denies Arsenal link' but form what I can see, what he's really done is just refused to talk about it:
    I think you're right with Giroud, yeah. He's definitely getting more accustomed to receiving that additional attention. I think technically he's gifted enough; his flick ons and link play certainly indicate to me he's good enough with the ball at his feet, and he's technically very good in the air. What's more important though, as you say, is his movement off the ball. He definitely seems to want to be where the ball is going to go all the time, which sounds silly but is what I think most great strikers have. The PL plays at a different tempo and I think he's better with it now. He also said in the interview recently the biggest difference is that he knows the teammates better. I've been impressed with how hard Giroud has worked on his English which is pretty decent now, and you can tell from pictures and the way the players interact that he's a popular guy in the dressing room. I think for strikers particularly it's important to feel loved, and him being more of a part of the team unit (which seems more cohesive, particularly around the young British coterie, than it has done for a long time now) is going to help too. My only criticism is that he sometimes angles runs to the near-post far too regularly for my liking.

    Gnabry could be kept around for the cup games, you're right. There's definitely benefit just hanging around the first team, training with them etc. Especially with the larger German contingent emerging at the club, it'll be good for Gnab to learn from Polski who is an icon of his national team. I think in January he'll need to go out on loan, though. The games from there just all seem to be way too important for the risk of young blood...

    Miquel is... I'm not sure what he is, to be honest. Like you, I've hopes for him. He seems to have an outstanding work ethic and he's definitely improving a lot. He's also definitely not of a level to do a CB job for us. He has a tendency to make rather outrageous mistakes, and to get caught wildly out of position. Djourou was a good 4th CB, in my opinion, but clearly just a bit too good and ambitious to play 10 games or less a season (and who can blame him?). We do, I think, need to find someone.

    The Bernard situation is interesting. Papers reporting it to be a done deal, practically, but then the bookies did close bets on Higuain too so... You're right, his language suggests to me more that he IS going than isn't. I really don't know anything about him, but if Wenger is really going to splash that kind of cash then I'm optimistic.
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    http://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/sport...r-mill-5263070

    Definitely not getting my hopes up...:rolleyes:
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    I'm quite a fan of Giroud but I still think we need a striker. If Giroud gets injured we can't afford having our backup strikers doing things like this:



    After laughing at that, my eyes slowly began to tear up
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    (Original post by Abiraleft)

    Loving the friendliness and sense of fraternity amongst the team at the tour.
    Haha you can say that again! Heres another one:
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    (Original post by 419)
    i've said this before and I'll say it again. Watch Giroud turn out like Drgoba. They've both taken similar path.
    :rofl:
 
 
 
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