Dein Claims Wenger Is Ready to Spend Big
Former Arsenal vice-chairman David Dein believes that coach Arsene Wenger is finally ready to splash some serious cash in the transfer market.
Despite having enough money in the bank, the Gunners have never competed with the big spenders in the transfer market for players of the highest quality, but Dein says this is about to change.
The 69-year-old businessman, who is BFF with Wenger and must have some inside knowledge, told 5Live Breakfast: “The fact is he has to strengthen the team and I know he will do that. He is one of the best managers in the world, he’s been coaching for 30 years and knows what he is doing. He knows what he wants and it’s just a question of identifying the right talent.”
Talking about Wenger’s future at the club, he added: “It’s a long, hard season and I am a great supporter of Arsene. He has done a phenomenal job and continues to do so year-on-year. He has the fire in his belly. I don’t see any reason why he shouldn’t be there. Arsene’s on course for next season’s Champions League. But they have fallen 20-odd points behind United, which is not good enough.”
Norwich’s Johnson Unfazed by Wilshere Duel
Norwich City midfielder Bradley Johnson says that he is a fan of Arsenal star Jack Wilshere’s talents but ‘won’t be fazed by’ his quality when their clubs meet at Emirates Stadium on Saturday.
Wilshere, 21, is expected to return to action this weekend against the Canaries after spending the last six weeks out injured. Johnson is fully aware how much quality the England international possesses but has made it clear that he won’t be intimidated by him.
Johnson said: “You want to play against the best and Jack is a terrific player, but on the day he’s just another player in front of me who I want to beat. I won’t be fazed by how good he is, I’ll try my best against him and hopefully we’ll get the win.”
About his team’s chances against the Gunners, he added: “No one expects us to go to clubs like Arsenal and Man Utd and win, but we’ve beaten both of them at home already this season so who says we can’t do it away from home?. We know it will be a hard game. If we get anything out of it, it will be a bonus.
“We work hard for each other and we got into Arsenal’s faces at home. We upset their rhythm. We know it will be tough at the Emirates because they’re on a good run of form, but if we go there and play like we did at Carrow Road, why can’t we get a result there?”
Seaman Frustrated With Arsenal Plight
Arsenal legend David Seaman believes that the Gunners will finish in the top four at the end of the season but is disappointed at the club’s failure to win silverware.
The 49-year-old former goalkeeper won many trophies with Arsenal during his playing days and so watching the club’s ongoing trophy drought frustrates him.
In an interview with talkSPORT, Seaman said: “Almost every year, we were winning things. I have got nine winners’ medals and quite a few runners-up ones as well and to see what is happening now is so frustrating. You could argue that they are playing better football because when they are on [form], nobody is going to beat them. They play some fantastic one-touch and two-touch football, but it is not consistent enough. Whether the balance is right, I don’t know. We are getting inconsistent performances.
“The gap is getting bigger. You ask any player if he wants to go to Arsenal, or another club and double his wages and they are going to take that [latter] option. We would never have sold our best players when I was playing. Arsene Wenger knew when his best players were past it and when they had to go, but now people are leaving and going on to bigger and better things.”
About the Gunners’ top-four chances, he added: “Arsenal are in great form at the moment, so my worry would be for Tottenham. Chelsea are still firing and Tottenham have hit a little bit of a dodgy patch.”
Graham Backs Gunners for Top-Four Finish
Former Arsenal and Tottenham manager George Graham believes that the Gunners will finish ahead of Spurs in the race for top-four places.
Not too long ago, Spurs had a seven-point lead over the Gunners, but the former’s faltering form and the latter’s resurgence means that the gap has now shrunken to just two points. While Graham previously had doubts over Arsenal’s ability to secure Champions League qualification this season, it seems his views on the subject have changed completely now.
In an interview with talkSPORT, he said: “I fancy Arsenal [to finish in the top four]. I didn’t earlier in the season but now they’re favourites and could maybe even end up third. Tottenham have been outstanding this season. In the games I saw them play earlier this season I thought they would definitely be in the top four, but if you look at the fixture list they have got a very, very hard run-in. Arsenal’s only real tough game is away at Manchester United.
“Arsene Wenger has been under a lot of pressure and criticism this season, some of it is justified, but when it comes to the run in at the end of the season he’s been fantastic. They’re not the Arsenal of old but they’re picking up important points and playing with a lot of confidence.”
Angha to Join Nuremberg
Arsenal youngster Martin Angha has agreed to join FC Nuremberg in the summer. (The Express)
The 19-year-old centre-half, who arrived at Emirates Stadium in 2010 from FC Zurich, has signed a pre-contract agreement with the Bundesliga outfit.
Angha has so far made only two senior appearances for the Gunners, and it doesn’t seem that he will be adding anymore to that meager tally.