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Latest Update on Yann M’Vila’s Ankle Injury

Yann M'Vila - France v Bosnia & Herzegovina - EURO 2012 Qualifier

Cried like a baby that wanted his mummy

After a pretty uneventful Thursday, I got a bottle of my favorite Guinness to watch the team I’m supporting in the forthcoming Euros, Les Bleus. For starters, Laurent Blanc employs a tactical setup no different from Arsene Wenger’s 4-2-3-1 but it’s more or less like the traditional 4-3-3 with one striker spearheading the attack.

The French national team has also produced a boatload of talents that showcased their talents in the world stage, winning the 1998 FIFA World Cup and the 2000 European Championship. However, age took its tool on that golden generation and Raymond Domenech made a mockery of a once feared team as he crashed out miserably in the major tourneys he took his side too.

The failure of the 2010 FIFA World Cup was the last straw from the hierarchy of the French Football Federation, and they brought in Laurent Blanc in his stead, who has done one hell of a job with the team. Like Arsene Wenger, Le Blanc dipped his hands into youth and he has unearthed some great prospects that the world is eager to watch in the Euros.

One of these prospects is a sought-after Yann M’Vila, a hot cake for the predators of European football, with Arsenal leading the chasing pack at the moment. Like every relevant football topic, I and several sport writers out there have some “homework” on Yann M’Vila, and I published a piece showcasing his top 10 football attributes.

There’s also a brilliant piece by Major D’ Sun revealing why Arsenal needs a player of quality and Bleacher Report’s Allan Jiang published a good piece on his statistical side, comparing his output on the pitch with his fellow peers in Europe. Despite being on par with some and better than other profilic defensive midfielders out there, his stats were no different from Arsenal’s Francis Coquelin.

Food for thought.

France hosted Serbia in M’Vila’s home ground at Rennes, a football stadium that had not hosted an international game since the days Napoleon Bonaparte ruled the country.

Blanc named a formidable squad with Ligue 1 Goalie of the Year, Hugo Lloris between the sticks while Gael Clichy, Phillippe Mexes, our own Kos the Bosscielny, and Anthony Reveilliere completed the back line.

Yann M’Vila was the midfield enforcer with $amir Na$ri and Yohan Cabaye completing the midfield triumvirate. Florent Malouda and Franck Ribery provided wit on the flanks while Karim Benzema spearheaded the attack.

Serbia on the other hand, was a complete shadow of the squad that graced the 2010 FIFA World Cup, with so many unknown folks wearing the national team colors. Dejan Stankovic and Nemanja Vidic hanged their international boots after their dismal Euro 2012 qualifying campaign and the honor of the captaincy was bestowed upon Chelsea’s Branislav Ivanovic.

Five minutes into the game, M’Vila was on the end of a rash lounge from a bloke called Tadic, and the reaction on his face painted the picture vividly for everyone to see. M’Vila was in tears as he was taken off the pitch. Shortly afterwards, Philippe Auclair of the F.F.F posted this tweet:

As expected, the panic button was pressed so hard on Twitter, it sprang out of its remote control. A faction of some cunning Arsenal fans where “pleased” with the injury because it might probably signal the end of M’Vila’s Euro 2012 hopes like Frank Lampard, that picked up a thigh injury in training.

Many believe that a stellar performance from M’Vila at the Euros would hike his transfer fee with an extra quid or two, thereby placing him out of the reach of a Scrooge-esque club like Arsenal.

Dear M’Vila haters, sorry to bust your bubbles, but a reliable source like Jamie Sanderson, or @YoungGunsBlog as he’s known on Twitter, posted this tweet last night:

Laurent Blanc, his players and a combined fan base of Arsenal and France are waiting anxiously for more updates on M’Vila’s situation but there was a collective sigh of relief when he was seen on the bench, probably explaining the extent of the damage of his injury to Yohan Cabaye with bandages visible on his ankle.

As a fervent supporter of Arsenal and Les Bleus, I’ll be keen on seeing M’Vila in action because he’s one hell of a prospect that’s in the spotlight for all the right reasons and a good performance in the Euros will further justify those claims.

Get well soon Yann.


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Wenger Douses M’Vila Transfer Flames and a Tale of Bosscielny


If I got one pound for every time Yann M’Vila was mentioned in the past week, I would have generated enough funds to match Manchester City’s bid for $amir Na$ri. The French enforcer has been heavily linked with Arsenal and the Daily Mail reported that a deal has been agreed.

That bit of info was like music to the ears of every Arsenal fan and we all licked our lips in anticipation of the prospect of signing a truly world class player. A player with so many good attributes, with the required talent and potential to be ranked among the A-list defensive midfielders in the world.

His discipline is unbelievable too, something that will be extremely valuable to Arsenal over the course of a season as for a player in his role and with so much responsibility at Rennes he has very few bookings.

With Alex Song given license to roam more than usual it will enhance the attack and with M’Vila shepherding the defence as a natural midfield enforcer, then all aspects of Arsenal’s game will improve especially with his superb passing skills which will link the attack and defence brilliantly as well as controlling possession much easier.

Tales of M’Vila joining Arsenal caused an inferno but Arsene Wenger has decided to bring out a big extinguisher to douse those flames:

“It is not true, there is not any interest at the moment. We have not been in touch with anybody, we have not made any offer to anybody and we are nowhere near to buying anybody at the moment.”

“We are focused on our final game of the season.”

Yeah right.

This is the same Wenger that ruled out a move for Lukas Podolski but at this point in time, we are all wondering about the number he’s going to put on his jersey next season.

With the Euros looming around the corner, Wenger must do what is right in terms of business in the transfer window because international tournaments have a way for sky-rocketing player fees, escepially when they shine there. I’ll keep my fingers crossed and you’ll be sure to get an update on the M’Vila issue in due time.

Elsewhere, a lot of news has dominated the Arsenal realm with Arsene Wenger breaking the news that Patty Ol’ Rice won’t grace us with his shiny glasses next season. His replacement, Steve Bould has already been lined up and we will be on the verge of a new era.

Wenger also declared that he was grateful and privileged to have his trusty sidekick, Rice, by his side for what seemed like an eternity. This good article looks back at the stalwart’s illustrious career.

Like Rice, Bould plied his trade as a defender and I’m hoping that he’ll tweak a thing or two in Arsenal’s defensive setup, because that playing position has been suspect in recent seasons. We’ve have conceded a boatload of goals this season which contributed to the Gunners losing as much as 10 games this season, so serious work has to be done over the Summer to right a few wrongs.

Speaking of righting wrongs, Bacary Sagna has been scheduled to have a surgery to right the wrong that was caused by Norwich’s Bradley Johnson. The recuperation process will take as long as six months and I wish Mr. Reliable a speedy and healthy recovery.

Despite Arsenal’s collective shambolic defending this season, one player has stepped up the plate with a string of consistent and stellar performances that has earned him loads of plaudits this season. Laurent Koscielny was undoubtedly Arsenal’s Signing of the Season last year and in my opinion, has been a far better player than Thomas Vermaelen this season.

Vermaelen ran out of superlatives for his defensive partner labelling him as a key ingredient to Arsenal’s success story next season. The Frenchman played a lot of football last season but the way he matured tremendously has been a major jaw dropper

If I had a lice haven like Marouane Fellaini’s hair, I would have shredded parts of the hair to bits when Koscielny didn’t make the Team of the Year and I’ll certainly go bonkers if he’s not selected by France for the forthcoming Euros. Even Arsene Wenger acknowledges the fact that Kos the Boss deserves a place in the French sqaud for the forthcoming Euros.

Koscielny on the other hand, has firmly sight his sights on finishing in third place and he also revealed that some of the players almost lost confidence in Wenger’s ability as a manager during that trying period in the Summer.

Irrespective of how the season ends, Bosscielny can give himself a pat of the back for his performances in the campaign.


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Yann M’Vila and His Top 10 Football Attributes

The name on everyone’s lips

Born on the 29th of June 1990 in the city of Amiens, France, Yann M’Vila started his career in Amiens SC and Mantes  before joining the youth academy of Stade Rennais in 2004. After playing with the Reserves for a few seasons, Frederic Antonetti handed M’Vila his debut in the 2009/10 campaign.

M’Vila has been an ever-present force in the Rennes side and he has notched up 128 appearances in just three seasons with the French outfit.

On the International scene, M’Vila has represented France in all junior levels before making his senior team debut in August 2010, in a friendly match against Norway. He hasn’t received any honors in his national team colors but he was part of the France Under-17 side that lost in the semifinals of the 2007 Under-17 Euros to England.

Funnily enough, M’Vila was also part of the France Under-19 side that lost in the semifinals of the 2009 Under-19 Euros to England yet again. However, he has notched up 18 appearances for France and his only international goal came against Albania in a Euro 2012 qualifying match.

M’Vila hasn’t received any piece of silverware in his young career but his splendid performances in the 2010/11 campaign earned him a place in the 2011 Ligue 1 Team of the Year. M’Vila is held in high regard by the Rennes hierarchy, and his manager, Frederic Antonetti, has declared that M’Vila reads the game like Claude Makélélé, has the presence of Patrick Vieira and can pass the ball like Yaya Toure.

The midfield maestro is one of the most sought-after players in Europe and he has been heavily linked with Arsenal. Whispers of him securing a deal with Arsenal caused a serious stir on Twitter and the Daily Mail reported that a deal has been agreed.

M’Vila’s quality is proven and he’ll add his defensive prowess to Arsene Wenger’s team that has been lacking in that department. Arsenal currently has Alex Song as its chief holding midfielder with Francis Coquelin and Emmanuel Frimpong waiting in the ranks, while the likes of Abou Diaby, Jack Wilshere and Mikel Arteta can be deployed in that position.

Alex Song is a good defensive lynchpin but his flair for attacking has left Arsenal short at the back, especially with the likes of Thomas Vermaelen bombing forward as well. Arteta has done well to balance the midfield any time Song forays forward and his injury exposed Arsenal in the worst possible manner.

Unlike Song, M’Vila certainly knows what his primary job is and here’s my take on the top 10 footballing attributes he possesses.


This is one of the chief features a good defensive midfielder should have at his disposal and M’Vila is one of the better markers in the business. M’Vila is so good at marking that opposition attacking midfielders search for his presence long after the game is over.

When he’s really in the mood, he can frustrate any midfielder he’s coming up against.


M’Vila is primarily a holding midfielder for Rennes, but he’s also adept as a deep-lying playmaker, a role that earned Andrea Pirlo an immortal status in his AC Milan days. The maestro has a good passing range and his passes can split defenses like hot knife through butter.


M’Vila’s ability to read the game superbly makes him a difficult player to come up against. He’s one player that knows how to anticipate the ball with consummate ease.

However, Arsenal has its king of anticipation, the Boss himself, Laurent Koscielny.


M’Vila is very confident with the ball at his feet and he keeps a very cool head in the toughest of situations. Even if the attacker besides to turn into a raging bull and is heading towards M’Vila, he’ll still be as calm and composed as ever.


This is one attribute that has certainly being lacking in Arsene Wenger’s squad.

Times without number, Arsenal tends to switch off at vital moments of the game and they always end up getting punished. Despite the fact that fingers were rightly pointed at Song for his sloppy play, the entire team was still at fault for failing to defend well as a unit, allowing Morison to smash his effort past Wojciech Szczesny.

M’Vila’s concentration levels are very high and he knows how to keep them in check when he needs to.


M’Vila has a strong build and he uses it to his advantage of the field of play. He certainly can’t be bullied on the field of play.


M’Vila is a midfielder that’s very comfortable with the ball at his feet. His close control is pretty impressive and he has a decent first touch.


M’Vila is a midfielder that has a thing for an aggressive style of play. Irrespective of who the opposition is, he takes on all comers and is always looking to be dominant.

The Premier League has a lot of physical players and aggression is a key attribute for any midfielder’s to possess in order to thrive well.

Work Rate

M’Vila has a fantastic work rate in the middle of the park and he covers huge distances on the pitch like no other. His desire to help out his teammates is a huge factor that has earned him plaudits worldwide.

Off the Ball movement

When M’Vila is not with the ball, he’s a constant thorn in the flesh of many opposition midfielders because his of the ball movement is sleek. From throw-ins to more passes from a teammate, M’Vila is a player that can be backed upon to make himself available for a pass.


Yann M’Vila is a player that oozes of quality. His potential addition to Arsenal’s squad would bolster Arsene Wenger’s team with the much needed quality that would go a long way in the team’s hunt for silverware. His arrival will also keep Alex Song his toes, as complacency has started creeping in slowly into his game.

I hope these rumors are true.


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