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It’s Good To Be Back

Bed time approaches on the eve of the Emirates Cup. It has been the most remarkable day of the close season. Whilst I am loathe to mention it until we have an announcement on there is something incredibly uplifting about the potential record fee to secure the services of Lille’s Nicolas Pepe, and for less than the asking price of a Zaha who failed in the big pond that is Old Trafford.

I’ll get flamed for this, I’m sure, but also I can hardly shed a tear for the injury that has befallen Ryan Shawcross today. I may regret typing this at some point in the future, but I hope we draw Stoke in a cup tie so we can enquire as to who is walking with a limp in the immediate future. Karma, I love you on occasion.

And now to anticipate what lies in wait on the ‘morrow. There is much talk of disruptions to train traffic because of the gorgeous weather. Added to that my local taxi provider seems to have had their phone cut off so I have had to resort to an unconfirmed online booking for first thing in the morning. What could possibly go wrong?

There is much to anticipate. A cameo from Dani Ceballos, hopefully. What an intelligent use of whatever restricted funds there are to secure the services of a major prospect from Real Madrid if only for a season. Teams in the lower leagues have been using such loan deals to build promotion and title winning teams for years now. I have no problems with us following this model as long as the flow of incoming temporary talent is top quality, and limited in numbers.

Is it too much to hope to catch a glimpse of William Saliba in the blue suit, white shirt, and red tie? Perhaps he is already back in France preparing for his loan season with his former employers? It does seem a strange deal, I agree, but bringing him over a year early might have proven to be an error. We don’t know, do we? His signing is however a sign of our faith in the future and our planning is not just knee-jerk short-termism.

I am determined to catch at very least the second-half of the Arsenal women playing Bayern Munich. A big European campaign awaits the WSL champions and this will give us a clue as to where we need to be.

Other than that I am hoping to run into a number of familiar faces, at least in the pub. I no longer will regularly frequent Block 32 but at least I managed to secure a seat in 31 tomorrow, so may see some familiar faces at ‘the next bar to mine’.

It will likely be a long day so the report will probably have to wait for Monday evening, by which time most of you will have seen it too (It’s on Premier Sports here). Roll on 9am and hopefully the first taxi of a new season.

Have a great one, ‘holics.

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