It’s Going to be a Long Summer for the Gooners

Reports that Fulham and Australian goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer has been linked with a club move from to English Premier League giants Arsenal had the Daily Football Blog’s two Gooners offering other possibilities – including one’s grandmother.[ad#as2]

The Daily Mirror reported this week that Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is very keen to sign the Fulham goalkeeper after losing faith with Manuel Almunia in the late stages of last season.

Schwarzer had moved to the top of Wenger’s hit list after the gaffer was put off by high prices for his other goalkeeping targets – AZ Alkmaar’s Sergio Romero and Shakhtar Donetsk’s Andriy Pyatov.

Schwarzer helped guide the Cottagers to the UEFA Europa League final and a credible 12th in the Premier League.

Frank Finnegan: That’s certainly one of the top names we’re hearing, along with all the Buffoon and Hart talk. At this point, I think we Gooners just want to see ANYONE else in goal. It’s like when you get sick of the President, or your boss – just seeing any different face back there will be an improvement.

Fabianski needs to go as well. Just can’t bear to watch him back there anymore. Mannone can be the backup, and the Polish kid whose name I can’t possibly spell correctly without copying and pasting (Sczyechnzycy?) can be the number 3, or go out for loan again.

They need a tough, strong, reliable leader and communicator back there. Schwarzer would be fine by me as a 2-3 year transition guy until Scyzyfgysifsyny is ready.

Ron Patel: Screw that.

Schwarzer is 37, and while keepers play until 40, get someone a little younger. Buffon has to be the guy. He’s available. Or Hart, or anyone besides Almunia, Fabianski and Mannone. My grandmother.

Frank Finnegan: Oh, definitely – would take Hart or Buffon ahead of him. But I’ve learned to not get my hopes up about the big names. And I just want anyone different back there next year. Hell, not even the mid-range names anymore. Arsenal’s linked with about 246 players right now. How many of those are realistic? About 7, maybe. How many will Wenger sign? Maybe 2 or 3. And that probably won’t even offset the number of players that will leave this summer. Merida’s already gone, and I think Eduardo, Gallas and Silvestre are all but gone as well.

Now the Fabregas thing is ‘in Wenger’s hands’ and ‘may stretch on right to the transfer deadline’. That second part worries me much more than even the thought of Fabregas leaving. As bad as him leaving right now would be, at least there would be time to try to sign guys to try to replace him (Gorcouff? Melo? Arteta?). If it goes all the way through August, (a) the price will probably go down and (b) Arsenal would not have time to sign anyone with the money they get for him, leaving us with what in that position? Denilson? God help us. I think Ramsey can one day be a Fabregas-type player, but he’s too young for that now, and we don’t know how he’ll come back from that injury. Eduardo has certainly never returned to what he was.

This is a potential nightmare of an offseason. And it’s a World Cup year, so we all know prices will go through the roof for any player that has so much as a good moment in the World Cup. Hell, Diaby could come up with one of his one-every-six-months incredible moments, and some club in Italy will steal him away or something.

I am incredibly excited for the World Cup (Ireland’s painful exclusion not withstanding), but am dreading the weeks following it.

Did anyone see Wenger at the Chamakh signing press conference? He looked extremely old, worn down and tired. And what a sad announcement of a signing – while Barcelona and Real Madrid open up their stadiums and get 30,000 people to show up to watch a new player put on his new shirt and juggle the ball for 2 minutes, Arsenal does it in a little room with Wenger in an ugly brown shirt and Chamakh memorizing enough English to say “Today I am a Gooner!” into the ArsenalTV camera. Of course, after 18 months of saying you’re going to sign someone, when you actually do it, it is sort of anti-climactic.

And Maroune, you’re a Gunner – we’re the Gooners. You might want to get that straight. Gooners get blitzed at the Gunners Pub before matches – you better not be doing that.

The joys of being an Arsenal fan, I guess…

One Response

  1. Frank Finnegan 3rd June 2010

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