Resident Blogger : BrainySteppo
“Human desires are insatiable!” That is dubbed as the first rule of economics, and this rule extends to all sectors of human endeavours, football included.
Over the last 20 years, the arguably most anticipated period of a footballing year (unfootballistically) is the TRANSFER WINDOW. Easily observed, most of football fans have a doctrine that is possessive and unrestrictive in nature, stating that no matter how good a team is or will become, faith in using the window must be kept constant and consistent and one’s team must partake in whatever form.
To be sincere, there lay an atom of truth beneath that fan-based assertion. Results of activities during this period tell us that the tutto mercato is a successful strategy most of the time. A team is always subjected to changes in mission, shape, tactics & philosophy. Rarely can all of these be achieved with the raw materials at hand and brains in possession. Plus, it is bound to happen that during these changes there should be outgoings in personnel and setup. So it is bound for players, to seek greener pastures, being unneeded, ridiculous to keep cost-wise, or some to be bigger than the club; mostly in their own opinion.
However, a reality is that fans make it an obsession in desperation, and relatively use it as a means to throw hits at the club. Making a case for Arsenal’s perspective requires more of a dig-in and less of a bias; and hence one’s prone to encounter difficulties. But it becomes less so, if an understanding can be garnered from elementary positions, this would assist a lot in putting to bed those questions and assumptions centered on dithering; “just what we need”, “if only we could show ambition”, etc.
Let’s start by identifying the relevancies of this window. Sky Sports gave a spin which suits with Arsenal’s perspective. It reads; “Clubs from all divisions can conclude deals already made and set to work on others as they begin to restructure their squads ahead of the new season”. A few points can be deduced from the quotation:
- Some deals can already be made before the window commences;
- Football clubs set out to work on other deals;
- A and B above are deal-oriented… indicating that a set number of parties are involved and before the dotted lines are signed, all parties must have reached an agreement in a win-win situation.
- It is for restructuring the squad. Can be to make necessary reshuffles in ‘on-field’ departments, coaching and fitness staff and if in England, to fill the homegrown
So when Wenger says he wants to assess his squad before making moves, one has to ‘wonder-in-dismay’, why fans go on protest. There might tend to be an argument that he should have done all his assessments during the course of the season; but, assessment is not as easy as it is publicised, and for a club like Arsenal, it is more ‘of content’.
Assessment is continuous systematic (sequential, operational & logical), cumulative (all observations and decisions are pooled together and given to details) and comprehensive (takes care of all aspects of cognitive, non-cognitive, functional and structural domains) activity. Little wonder the club has a Data and Statistics department (remember that £3m withdrawal that was propagated?). Worthy to note that during the course of assessment, there tend to be factors militating against it, which can include; frequent disruptions, time factor and difficulty in drawing conclusions.
Arsenal’s approach gets more eye-catch-teeth, when one reads understands the essence of its participation, which in recent times, has been about addition of quality and within a price limit and wage structure; which make deals even harder to accomplish. It gets easier when it is about getting extra makeweights, replacements and back-ups, notably in the cases of Danny Welbeck and Kim Källström (with all due respect).
“If I find a plyer with an exceptional potential who can strengthen the squad, then I will do it”. Wenger
To be candid, now it will be difficult to find players who would really improve our squad. A fully fit Arsenal team is one of the dangerous teams. By that reading, it will be more difficult to see players who would displace the occupants of certain roles, in all areas of our footballing world. A few questions might then likely be put forward; do we have it all? Will this philosophy always benefit the club? The answers are not distant. We can’t have it all, but those who have what we might need, will they let go? Arsene even gave a more knockout response:
“…and the numbers of players who can strengthen the BIG teams in Europe is very restricted”
Certainly, no philosophies are exclusively benefiting. You do it the Van Gaal way and it is only good on paper, go blue and it breaks your financial structure, synthesize into spurs and you’ll end up somewhere else. We can’t exclusively fault an approach that has yielded a confusing Santi Cazorla, multiple vision Mesut Ozil, and dual-octa-core Alexis Sanchez, as well as development of double tyre Theo Walcott, zero brake Jack Wilshere and turbo model Aaron Ramsey.
These shows that when, and before the window period approaches, the club identifies its needs, determine whether what is on the ground can accommodate the situation, listen to and analyze reports of scouts, wait for the merry-go-round and/or do the tap up; while doing it within the financial constraints of the club.
‘These people’ do us all less good by linking us to all Kalous and Goucurffs, to which end are probably not on the club’s radar, a recent case being Morgan Sch……lin. We do not even tend to first ask ourselves if those linked would provide the needed on and off field quality. True that most clubs tend to do these in their own measurements but they do so to blow the roof, satisfy desperations, flex muscles and break central banks, given zero priority to solution from within. However, in Arsenal’s case, in the present age, it goes diplomatic, systematic, relevant, developmental, and most certainly; cost-effective, quality-wise. Which means it would remain under rated, less appreciated, and rubbished.
Let us know what you think too. Should this be given more appreciation? Do you agree or have different view?
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