So it was with a little surprise that the editorial group at Untold peered at its screens soon after and saw the headline from the Express saying, “Arsenal 25-man Premier League squad revealed as Unai Emery includes new signings.”
Had we really missed five players out?
As it turned out, no we hadn’t. For despite the headline the Express listed the same 20 players as we had. They’d just counted them wrongly.
Anyway, with the whole transfer malarkey done and dusted we can now do a list of all the players who left during le mercato as they say in foreign parts. Every single Arsenal player was tipped to be leaving by the all knowing but totally bonkers media during the summer, but that of course means nothing. So who went? Here’s the list.
Julio Pleguezuelo — to FC Twente (free)
Stephan Lichtsteiner — to Augsburg (free)
Cohen Bramall — Free agent (released)
David Ospina — to Napoli (£3.5m)
Jordi Osei-Totu — to Bochum (loan)
Aaron Ramsey — to Juventus (free)
Bayli Spencer-Adams — to Watford (free)
Daniel Ballard — to Swindon Town (loan)
Vontae Daley-Campbell — to Leicester City (£££???)
Charlie Gilmour — to Norwich City (free)
Ben Sheaf — to Doncaster Rovers (loan)
William Saliba — to Saint-Etienne (loan)
Xavier Amaechi — to Hamburg (£££???)
Krystian Bielik — to Derby (£7.5m)
Takuma Asano — to Partizan Belgrade (£910k)
Laurent Koscielny — to Bordeau (£4.6m)
Carl Jenkinson — to Nottingham Forest (£££???)
Danny Welbeck — to Watford (free)
Dominic Thompson — to Brentfor (£3m)
Eddie Nketiah — to Leeds United (loan)
Alex Iwobi — to Everton (£28m)
Nacho Monreal — to Real Sociedad (£450k)
Mohamed Elneny — to Besiktas (loan)
Kelechi Nwakali — to Huesca (£££???)
Henrikh Mkhitaryan — to Roma (loan)
At the time of writing this, the media have not made much of there only being a 20 man squad, but there is a lot of chatter about a lack of defenders. But I wondered if this really is the case, for as far as I can see we have…
Now I know that many “fans” have turned against Mustafi, and that the media have reported that he was told to find himself a new club, but didn’t. But whatever has happened he is still on the list and at the club, and many a player has been known to come out of the dip in form and come back a new player. We shall see.
Anyway we have 11 players, and can play a maximum of five in a game. Plus I suspect that out of the half dozen defenders listed in the under 23 squad at least a couple will be given a chance in league cup and maybe even Uefa Cup group stage games.
So put it all together and we have a fair range of players in defence. Personally I would say that a back four of Bellerin, Sokratis, Holding and Tierney looks rather fine to me.
Anyway the deals are done, we have a squad and there is nothing for the media to moan about, right? Well, no, actually there is. For as soon as the fenêtre had fermé we had details of the players we should have signed if only we had had the all powerful all-knowing Paul Merson running the show. He said we made a mistake in not getting Fabian Delph.
But maybe seeing the amount of abuse Arsenal gets from the media (and the residual AAA), in the end Delph decided against it.
And so as we come close to wrapping up the whole load of nonsense that is the transfer time, Football.London has told us that the Arsenal Supporters Trust and their hangers on were all right, and that we really didn’t have loads of money to spend.