Daily Archives: June 19, 2012
Two more teams bowed out of the European Championships yesterday and I could only express my sympathy for a Croatia side that matched Spain pound for pound. As expected, the Spanish folks passed the ball more than the amount of times Arsenal fans check news columns for new signings.
After so much intense pressure, Arsene Wenger’s protegee, Cesc Fabregas, lofted a brilliant through ball to Andres Iniesta that was onside. The technical beast handed the simplest of assists to Jesus Navas, that had a touch before ripping the net apart with a shot. However, I would have preferred to see Navas blast the ball into orbit from close range.
That would have been hilarious.
Elsewhere, Italy compounded Ireland’s misery with a 2-0 over Giovanni Trappatoni’s (or Trapper Tony, as Arseblogger prefers it) side. The Irish were disappointing to say the least and Keith Andrews didn’t help his team’s cause when he picked up a red card.
The Irish defense has been awful throughout the tournament and more atrocious defending was on display yesterday. Antonio Cassano grabbed Italy’s first goal with a glancing header while the volatile maverick, Mario Balotelli, scored a technically adept goal to seal the contest for Italy.
Balotelli aimed some words towards his manager, Cesare Prandelli, at the Italian dugout but Leandro Bonucci did the right thing by covering his pile hole throughout the ordeal.
The final sets of group phase fixtures will take place today with France taking on Sweden and England locking horns with Ukraine. The team that wins the group have a date with Italy while the second placed them will have a daunting task of playing the European and World champions, Spain.
The Euros come into life from the quarterfinal stage with the teams involved knowing what lies ahead of them. I’ve witnessed many great quarterfinal fixtures in the yesteryear and I’m looking forward to these new sets of fixtures.
Greece clawed their way into this stage courtesy of the head to head rule but I have faith in those efficient German Machines to do the job and do it well. The Portugal vs. Czech Republic game doesn’t look to appealing to me but I won’t mind see more goals from Cristiano Ronaldo as well as more bloopers from Petr Cech.
Moving over to Arsenal news, the media Vultures are it again, spreading rumors and speculation on their favorite topic this summer. At some point, I got very frustrated with the way these Vultures tossed fans around with Lukas Podolski’s transfer saga.
Before the Podolski deal was announced on Arsenal.com, the media Vultures reported that he had agreed personal terms and both parties had agreed a transfer fee. Within weeks, these Vultures reported that the deal was off and this made the fans go haywire.
The media Vultures have spiced things up by reporting that Yann M’Vila is interested in a move to Arsenal but the fans have become bored with countless columns linking Arsenal to the highly-rated defensive midfielder.
However, the main bit of info buzzing the realm called Arsenal is that the Gunners have agreed a deal to sign Montpellier Herault SC’s center forward, Olivier Giroud.
It has been reported that Arsenal and Montpellier have reached a “breakthrough” as the Gunners have agreed to meet the player’s release clause which is £12.8m. It has also been reported that Giroud has agreed personal terms with the Gunners, agreeing a contract of £50,000 per week, which will treble his current wages of £15,000 per week.
Giroud’s career has seen him play for Lower Division French outfits but his big break arrived in Montpellier and he has been in prolific form for the Ligue 1 winners, scoring 39 goals in two seasons with the club.
He’s a 6 feet 3 inches tall forward that will add dynamism to Arsenal’s attack and he has stated that he’s ready to give van Persie a run for his money.
Speaking of money, van Persie and Darren Bent are set to earn an extra quid or two as the forwards are going to appear on a new TV series called Red or Black.
Bent will be making his maiden appearance on the show hosted by ITV 1 but Van Persie returns after beating former team-mate Cesc Fabregas in a challenge last year. The Arsenal striker managed to get the best of the Spanish midfielder in a game called ‘Strike Out’.
The two footballers had to knock over moving targets with a football, in a test of power and accuracy.
Van Persie and Bent will start the show at some point this month, and they’ll be betting on red or black for a prize of a whooping £500,000 in each episode.
We all hope that van Persie will be in Arsenal’s Red, rather than the Black side of the fans.
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