More Transfer Speculation and Man City Priced Out of Tickets
With the Gunners waiting till Sunday for a crunch fixture with title hopefuls, Manchester City, shenanigans off the pitch have been dominating the headlines, and as expected, transfer speculation has taken center stage.
Arsenal fans remain hopeful about seeing a player or two join the team they support and the media Vultures have done their bit to continue linking players with the club.
Just like Demba Ba, Everton’s powerhouse, Marouane Fellaini, has a £22m release clause on his current deal (via ESPN Star). Fellaini has been on the wishlist of many teams this season and he was been influential in Everton’s ascendancy this season. Arsenal is in dire need of an enforcer in midfield and getting a player like Fellaini will make the fans drool.
Sorry to burst your bubble, Chelsea is also interested.
Birmingham City is likely to offload their star goalie, Jack Butland, as their financial situation continues to deteriorate (via Sportsvibe). The club went public about their poor financial state and we all hope not to see another Portsmouth in the making.
The youngster has been on the spotlight for a long while and Wojciech Szczesny could do with some competition. However, a move for the lad is highly unlikely with Wenger’s undying faith in Vito Mannone and Lukasz Fabianski.
As we all know, Arsenal needs some firepower up front but they’ll have to look elsewhere as Barcelona’s president, Sandro Rosell, has ruled out any sale for Arsenal target, David Villa (via Express). It was believed that Villa had become a disgruntled figure due to lack of playing time this season, and it seemed as if a loan move was on the cards.
Wilfried Zaha has been another name that has been echoed recently as he keeps dazzling the npower Championship with his dazzling runs and assists. He has been so awesome in Selhurst Park, that the fans even senerade him with the chant,
“That’s the way Zaha Zaha, we like it, Zaha Zaha”
Arsenal was heavily linked with the player but Manchester United and Tottenham have joined the race to sign the wonderkid.
However, Crystal Palace are unsure of about selling the youngster because it could dent their chances of promotion to the Premier League (via Total Football Madness). Zaha has been very influential for the Eagles this season with five goals in 28 games thus far.
Finally, Arsenal has been linked with Mainz’ sharp-shooter, Adam Szalai, that has been in prolific form for the Bundesliga outfit this season (via Soccer News). Szalai fits the bill for a typical Arsene Wenger signing – relatively unknown, probably well-thought and quite prolific.
With nine days into the transfer window, the gates of the Emirates still remains shut. There’s still a lot of time to rectify that.
Speaking of shut gates, Manchester City has returned over 800 tickets from the 3000 allocated to the Premier League champions for Sunday’s crunch clash (via Independent).
Arseblog gave his take on the situation and trust me, it’s worth a read.
Arsenal’s clash against Manchester City is classified as a Category A fixture, and it costs £62, which is almost 16,000 naira.
Other Category A teams include Manchester United, Chelsea, Liverpool, Tottenham and other European juggernauts, like Bayern Munich, coming to the Emirates next month.
Manchester City’s Supporter’s Club General Secretary, Kevin Parker, was obviously irked and had this to say,
“It’s the most expensive amount I can ever remember paying for a ticket in my life, for a Sunday afternoon game which is live on satellite television.
“And it’s not as if finding a television to watch the game on is difficult nowadays. Even if the game wasn’t live, to charge £62 to watch it is ridiculous, but to charge that amount when people can see it live on TV is crazy.
These are the same fans that came in their thousands when Arsenal hosted them in the Carling Cup quarterfinal last season. Sergio Aguero scored the goal that sent the Gunners out of the competition and the game was watched for a knockdown price of £10.
Like their oil-rich owners, most Man City fans probably spent a lot of cash during the yuletide season. They are fans of a club that pays a player like Emmanuel Greedybayor £170,000 per week and still pay him while he was on loan at other clubs. A club that buys the Wright-Phillips, Adebayors and Santa Cruz’ of football for over £20m and sell them for scrap.
Manchester City’s sugar daddies are part of the problem and their irresponsible spending has probably put their fans in a precarious position. Arsenal has no choice but to raise ticket prices in order to try and keep up with the competition. If they don’t then the players will just look for the money elsewhere like Walcott is now.
The forward is closing in on a bumper deal that will keep him at the Emirates till 2017.
A survey carried out last year reveals that Arsenal have the most expensive adult matchday ticket (£126) and season ticket (£1,955) in England’s top flight, but the prices were defended by CEO, Ivan Gazidis.
Football is a game that has been dominated by money and Arsenal is no stranger to the recent transition. While the Gunners continue to take a conservative and Scrooge-esque approach on funding of transfers, teams like Chelsea, Manchester City and more recently, Paris St. Germain, have brought their petro-greens and have changed the outlook of the game.
Whether the Manchester City fans come or not, Sunday’s clash against the defending champions is of utmost importance to both sides. While the Gunners hope to gain more ground on the leading pack, Manchester City is seven points behind their rivals, Manchester United, so it’s gonna be one hell of a clash.
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