Is Arshavin within Arsenal’s reach? + Go easy on Hleb

Why do I get the feeling that Alex Hleb is going to get unfairly hammered on the blogs today?

The Belorussian, who nobody really expects to be at the club come the start of the season, has been quoted in the Daily Mirror as saying:

“My view of football and Wenger’s didn’t coincide at all. I don’t know where I will play next season. It’s being negotiated with two clubs and will be decided soon. I would prefer to move to Barcelona.”

According to Arseblogger these are just older quotes that have been republished, so there’s not too much cause for concern there. Even so, what he’s saying is hardly a criticism of Arsene Wenger – it’s merely a difference of opinion between player and manager – something that happens all the time in the world of football. However, the comments that may get Hleb into some hot water with the Arsenal fans were those aimed at close friend Cesc Fabregas and apparently criticised his Spanish teammate for being ‘selfish’. Observe:

“With scoring opportunities he [Fabregas] is more selfish than I am. Given the chance to shoot he always goes for it – unlike me.”

As with the first lot of comments, I can’t really see much wrong with what he’s said here. It seems to me like the interviewer has asked a question along the lines of, “Why do you think Fabregas scored more goals than you last season?” and he’s answered it absolutely truthfully. We know that Fabregas and Hleb have had an excellent relationship during their time at the club and regardless of the fact that the Belorussian wants to leave there’s no reason to suspect this has changed.

So lay off Hleb today, if only for me.

Arshavin within Arsenal’s reach?

Moving on now and the chase for the breakout star of Euro 2008 – Zenit St Petersburg’s Andrei Arshavin – has taken a further twist with Barcelona apparently dropping out of contention after failing to improve on their original offer for the playmaker.

“Barcelona failed to improve their original offer of €15 million. We have therefore decided to end our negotiations with Barcelona. We have received no offers for Arshavin from any other clubs, so there are no discussions taking place about his transfer.”

Despite the comments, I dare say it’s not the last we’ll hear from Barcelona on this matter, but it does perhaps indicate that they won’t push as hard for Arshavin as perhaps many people thought they would. Given that the other club that I thought would be most likely to sign the Russian, Chelsea, have declared they’re not interested after the purchase of Deco, it looks like Arsenal could be in a good position should the choose to pursue.

My recommendation? Get on your horse, Arsene, and give it your best shot. With Hleb surely set to leave there will be enough money to purchase a replacement – remember, Samir Nasri is an addition to the squad, not a replacement for Hleb – then Arshavin would be a great purchase. Just my two cents worth.

To finish on a super-positive note today are some great little comments from Arsenal’s most recent signing, Welsh winger Aaron Ramsey:

“I supported Manchester United as a youngster but once I had spoken to Arsene Wenger, the way he described the Arsenal set-up and their plans for the future impressed me. I thought about where the best place would be for me to develop as a player, and that was Arsenal.”

Good lad. Seems to have his head on very straight, which is wonderful to see.

Have a great Tuesday/night and as I already said, go easy on Hleb.

What do you think?

Have your say on Hleb, Arshavin or Ramsey by leaving a comment.



  1. I agree with what you said about the interviewers questions and how they can turn anything around as I don’t think hleb is stupid enough to say anything like that till he’s out the door. To be honest I would love another signing as long as they are not african no matter who they are as when the anc comes around we are the hardest hit with pompey being close second at losing players. Plus with Ramsey that’s a big f-you to ol red nose for thinking just a phone call and sending neville to talk to the player would beat ol arsne flying him out to the euro’s on a club plane and telling him he will be learning off fab this season. At least nothing of ade in the papers today as that was starting to piss me off.

  2. Bit confused SF.

    “Chelsea, have declared they’re not interested after the purchase of Deco, it looks like Arsenal could be in a good position should the choose to pursue.”

    I thought Chelsea have already confirmed the signing of Deco?

  3. Even though you said to lay off him, I find Hleb’s comments about Cesc to be utter shite. So Cesc shoots at “every” opportunity, that’s why he has the most assists in the league, despite him shooting all the time, idiot. Arse-Shaving would be a good investment and Wenger just needs to get out of his lack of spendature rut that he’s in. As for Ramsay, when I heard he had the opportunity to be toured around Old Trafford with Gary Neville or have dinner with Arsene Wenger in Switzerland, it is not surprising he chose the more sophisticated option. Good Lad!

  4. first of all, what is a twitter update box? (i guess i have gone away from this wonderful blog too long) 2ndly, are you guys serious that chelsea have signed deco? i was a really big fan! notice the emphasis on “was”! the premiership would really be an exciting one this season with england getting hold of a lot of good players( after the world watched its first ever champions league all english final with four of them qualifying for the quarter-finals and the same four again qualifying for the champions league this season) Astounding! i think arsenal has just been waiting for the world’s attention now that he has gotten it, he’ll show them the true arsenal way…watch out gunners, this season would be splendid! Forget all the transfer saga and have faith in the professor!!! before i forget, spanish fry how come the arsenal away kit has not been broadcasted on arsenal’s official website

  5. yeah Chelsea hav signed Deco for 8 mil. Hleb saying Cesc is more selfish has angered me a bit purely because Hleb was always reluctant to shoot but in footballing terms the word selfish isnt an insult and it resulted in Cesc scoring which are the reasons Hlebs comments have calmed down. Transfer specualtion annoys me alot, cant wait for Nasri to sign and I hope we can get Arshavin and a defender (Richards) and I still want Sendy sold!

  6. SF, I’m with you. Go easy on Hleb. He is still an Arsenal player, and will be until he officially signs for someone else.

    The term ‘selfish’ is often used in footballing (and sporting) circles in a different meaning to what it means in general circumstances. Hleb has used the word correctly to describe Fabregas. Rosicky is also ‘selfish’ as well, as he usually takes his chances when offered one. Hleb usually goes for assists.

  7. awww come one jay! cut young sendy some slack! he might jus come out of his on and off defence this season, besides an extra centre back is not bad! I really agree with you though, nasri should pls sign quickly i am really getting bored with all this transfer speculation…i want to see some actual transfer!! i really like hleb though and i hope he stays, seeing adebayor go would be a huge loss but not as huge as our penalty giving mid-fielder with the fleety feet!

  8. all these different attitudes makes our mid-field the perfect combination- hleb, nasri, diaby, ramsey, fabregas and rosicky! some of them pass more and shoot more(fabregas), some pass more and shoot less(hleb) some of them pass less and shoot less(diaby-just likes the the ball i guess) some of them pass and shoot equally(rosicky) and some of them we just dont know their category yet(nasri and ramsey)! selfishness should not be used in this context! lol!

  9. why do papers keep on with nonsense wenger not going to buy anyone from euros we have enough playmakers in our team and with talent we have our reserves our reserves he promote from within plus he get a younger player less known player for less 10 million if we get this player arsenal would have pay at least 20 milliion.

    i like hleb but is big problem he does not score goals thats his big problem and i think clubs are going to pay alot for winger atht cant score,lambard scors alot more but he is nowere he is nowere as skillful,

  10. HLEB’s comments did nothing to make me feel sorry for him or want him back at Arsenal. Go away maybe to Serie A and by the way Cesc is the reason anyone knew you were on the pitch. Clown.

  11. I’ll take it easy on Helb myself. Personally I’d actually prefer he stay, unless it’s a Helb for Yaya swap but I am quite positive Yaya is part of the future at Barca. He’ll have to play his way back into good graces but adding Nasri, assuming that gets done, and still having Helb back allows for some serious playmaking depth in the midfield. That said Cesc needs to ring up Helb and tell him to be a bit more selfish then. Put it in the top corner on the door step a few more times instead of trying to back heel to a screaming Ade. Then after you score be sure to run by Sheyi and scream GOAL!

    I would be pumped if Arshavin snubbed Chelsea/Barca for us. I followed him before his brilliant Euro performance so I have a soft spot for him. If it came down to Ade or Arshavin though I’d still take Adebayor.

  12. Dont forget about the news today in Italia that Milan now say Arsenal are ready to sell Ade, which if true should mean Wenger has found his replacement. Maybe Arshavin? Altho i’d rather it be Santa Cruz, or Martins whom are proven EPL players.

  13. @ Demetrio – I doubt it would be Arshavin, he doesn’t really play in the same position or in the same style. If Ade is to be sold and replaced then someone like Martins or Huntelaar are a more like-for-like replacement.

  14. It would have to be martins or santa cruz as we don’t have half a season to break them into the prem like dudu last season. Vela will surley get a brilliant run out in the pre season and then put into the cc squad but this boy looks like he could be our little overmars reincarnated and with nasri and a fit rosiscky we could be unstopable with richards at the back.

  15. Ramsey, Walcott, Vela and then maybe reserve players like Gibbs, Lansbury, Randall, Hoyte or Barazite could play in cc oooh im getting excited. I will not cut Sendy slack tunde, he is not good enough to play for Arsenal and we cant keep sayin he will become good, he lost us some pretty vital points last season, im not season he lost us the title though! He needs to go! Hleb and Nasri is great because we have 2 great players, if 1 gets injured you wouldnt notice a difference!


  17. Арщавин лучший игрок в мире!!! Блин, он просто красавец! Мне даже за Россию стало гордо!.. Просто УУУХ!!! Чемпион!

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