Friday, May 9, 2008

Hleb is Leaving, Let Him Go

Morning all. The main news this morning is that Alex Hleb will not be back at Arsenal next season, and while it's not 100% that Inter Milan is the club he'll be joining, it's about 99.130958203598% that he will. Hleb's agent, Nikolai Shpilevski (sounds like a shady character), had this to say today.

“Alex is preparing to make one of the most important moves of his life.

“He is leaving even though Arsenal want to offer him a new long-term contract.

“Only time will tell if it is the right decision but there’s no way back now. Everything will be settled in the next two weeks.”

He sounds so proud of it doesn't he? So it's certainly looking like he's definitely going to be gone, and to be honest I'm not all that bothered about it. With Flamini I'll admit I was constantly checking headlines to see if he had signed a new deal with us or someone else, but with Hleb it doesn't feel like much of a loss. He's probably had his best season for us this season and still only got three goals. Freddie and Pires used to be able to score in the double digits from the same spot. Hleb was never a natural winger, so even when he got the ball out wide his game wasn't about crosses and making runs, it was just cutting inside and generally losing the ball or passing it to the other team.

So how is he making the move? Well he could be doing a Webster, buying out the last two years of his contract in order to allow him to move for free. This would pretty much piss Arsene off so much that he would report Inter for tapping Hleb up and probably never do business with them again. Or maybe, just maybe, Inter will give us a fee for him. This is highly unlikely as Wenger has said he wouldn't be letting Hleb leave so it's pretty clear that he wouldn't have accepted a bid just a few days later. So Hleb is gone, probably for free, and we'll probably become a better team without him.

The question now is, how do we replace him? Wenger made it clear he was only prepared to lose Flamini this offseason, and now he has lost Hleb as well. That means he could be prepared to bring someone in to replace him. God help us if he decides to start Eboue out there every week because I think someone would be forced to run him over or something just to prevent it. I don't think the boss thinks Theo is ready for the full season playing every match, but I certainly think he's ready to start most of them. The problem there is I think Wenger sees Theo more as a striker than a winger. Who do you think can come in and play right winger?

More transfer rubbish before the season is even over as The Mail has said that Adebayor is demanding 80,000 pounds a week and he'll leave if he doesn't get it. Adebayor immeadiately came out and said that was complete rubbish and the Mail can shove their bollocks up their arses.
"I am very happy here. Reports which suggest I have threatened to quit are rubbish."

"I love the club and the fans."

"We have a great set of players here with a fantastic team spirit.

"We have had a good season, but next year we want to go one better by winning a trophy."

And that's why I love this man. He isn't worried about getting a pay raise, he's worried about getting the team ready for next year and going out and getting a trophy. You Adebayor haters can piss off honestly because Ade is one of the most committed and best players we have right now. You all loved Flamini so much but hated Ade...well who's turned out better for Arsenal now? Sorry that was a bit of a mini-rant but I still hear people all the time who talk about how shite he is. Nicklas Bendtner's father also says his son will not be going anywhere either.

Looking ahead to the Sunderland match this weekend it's going to be an even younger squad than we have had for the last two. Fabianski, Denilson, and Bendtner look set to continue with starting spots and Mark Randall and Kieran Gibbs could also be involved. Gibbs looks an especially promising player that can play on the left wing so I'd like to see him start on the left with Theo on the right hopefully. It looked like Jay Simpson might also get a chance in the first team, but Young Guns now says that he'll have to look for a new club.

Vital Arsenal makes his case for not bringing back Gilberto Silva. I'd personally like to see him back though.

That's about all I've got for you today so have a good one and I'll get something together at some point tomorrow. Cheers!


phatbastard said...

Wow...lots of news to digest in that report. Hleb going to me is an opportunity to replace him with someone who might not be quite as gifted technically...but who might score a bit. I think losing Flamini and Hleb mean that Arsene will be forced to buy more players then he orginally intended to. Another interesting story is Rosicky being ruled out for the Euros and having surgery next year. I see this as good and bad...assuming the surgery is successful and the rehab goes well he may have some rust on him...but he should also have fresh legs. Still I don't see how you can count on him contributing regularly next year. As for Eboue...I would still prefer to see him leave...but if he stays...I do think it's important to realize that this year was his first playing in an attacking position and hopefully he'll reward Arsene's faith in him by working hard this offseason to improve his offensive game. I think it was pretty clear at time he just was not comfortable on the attack and didn't know where to go with the ball. He gets himself in good position...if he could become a better crosser of the ball, with guys like Adebayor and Bendtner in the middle...he could become a valuable player again.

Anyway...I gotta admit I'm anxious to bring this season to a close...seems like there is so much work to be done in the offseason...just want to get to it!

ArseNole said...

Yeah it was quite a lot of stuff to go through today. And I agree that hopefully whoever takes Hleb's spot will score more even if he isn't quite as good on the ball.

I watched Arsene's press conference with the shareholders and heard the question asked about Rosicky. He said Tomas will have some exploratory surgery to see what is wrong with his hamstrings. So the intention is just to see what is wrong and then go from there, so it's still very much up in the air what he'll be able to contribute next season.

I think Eboue is complete rubbish and wouldn't be Arsenal quality if he worked 24/7 all summer on his attacking. Just my opinion though, I'd rather see Theo anyday.

phatbastard said...

You know I have to admit I had a, er, softening on my stance over Eboue and his level of shiteness....then I listened to this weeks Arsecast...and realized I was wrong, he's terrible and even if his attacking improved he'd still be a huge a-hole on the pitch. So my apologies for my moment of lax judgement.

Very interesting stuff with Rosicky, such a shame as he was one of my favorite players when he was healthy.