Arshavin 'to leave Arsenal in summer'

Ahead of the newspaper round-up let me tell you of a call I had yesterday from a pal in the know who told me that Andrey Arshavin was on his bike from the Arsenal in the summer. The chap who told me, a die-hard Arsenalista, has close links with several Premier League players and has never told me worthless tittle-tattle before — he has no reason to dream this up and in the past what he has told me has been accurate. So, there, you are. I am told no more than that and don’t write it as fact, merely passing on what I have been told.
Given his lacklustre performances of late will we miss him? But that’s not the point is it? He needs to knuckle down and deliver the displays we know he can turn in, even if it is only for the remainder of the season when he is fit again. Perhaps his home life in London has irked him and his missus and he fancies a switch for that reason. It’d be a shame and mean AW will have to draft in an exceptional talent to replace him but if his heart isn’t at the club then it’s best for all concerned that he leaves I suppose.
Moving to the tabloids and we have missed the chance to sign a new goalkeeper, according to the Daily Mirror. The paper says AW had targeted 23-year-old Uruguayan Fernando Muslera as the man to replace Manuel Almunia  but his hopes have been dashed after Muslera signed a new five year contract with Lazio.
The Mail says that Marouane Chamakh has hinted he will switch to the Arsenal. The Bordeaux striker is being quoted as saying he is ‘certain’ to leave at the end of the season. It would be undiplomatic for either Arsenal or Bordeaux to confirm a deal although as Chamakh will soon be a free agent, he is allowed to speak to other clubs, says the paper. But our interest is established. ‘He is a player we were close to signing,’ said AW after last August’s window closed.
Also in the Mail, Perry Groves has urged AW to sign Wilson Palacios from their T********.  ‘He’s the kind of midfield player we’re missing. He has high energy levels, a great work-ethic and stops the other team from playing,’ Groves said.
‘I think it’s quite ironic that Palacios came on trial to Arsenal but at the time we had [Patrick] Vieira, Gilberto [Silva] and [Cesc] Fabregas, and Wenger couldn’t see him breaking into our side so recommended the player to Steve Bruce when he was at Birmingham.  We’ve got a very young side that needs experience and I think Palacios fits the bill. Spurs are unlikely to let their best player come to us. But it’s that kind of player that we need.’
Given that Henry Norris is on a three-day break in Bognor Regis with his busty secretary Senga I have no musings to bring you from the great man. I tried his mobile but it went to answerphone so the best we can hope is that he returns refreshed and sober for the north London derby and gives us is view in his blog then.

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