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Upson Returns?

In a strange move, Arsene is reported to offer £5M plus Bendtner to West Ham for Matthew Upson. This peculiar in that Upson is valued by Wenger at more than  Arshavin.  If this deal goes through, it leaves the futures of Gallas and/or Toure in limbo.  Upson will not move to Arsenal to play second fiddle and Djourou is by far our most accomplished centre-back at the moment.   If Toure is the man to move, then we need to demand £15M from Manchester City.  If Man City are prepared to pay £12M plus for Bellamy and in excess of £15M for Santa Cruz, then we need to cash in on the lunatics at Eastlands.

During his spell at Arsenal Matthew Upson came accross Tony Adams and Martin Keown and was unable to dislodge either.  When the two were injured, it was unfortunate that Upson was also injured and was unable to show what he could do. 

If Bendtner leaves, then Wenger must be very hopeful that Vela is up to first team regular football and that Eduardo will be match fit soon, otherwise we are down to van Persie and Adebayor.

Countdown to January

The January transfer window cannot come  quickly enough fro Arsene, Arsenal and its fans.  That we are still in with a sniff of the title is a minor miracle, but come January that miracle needs to end and we need to bring in players.

Many have been mentioned, in defence Matthew Upson, Phillipe Mexes and van Buyten.  Mexes is an old target and the name fits the bill, van Buyten is an experienced player to replace Gallas, whilst Upson would be warmly welcomed back at Arsenal.  His first spell was littered with injuries and coincided with the club having Keown and Adams at the back.

Another West Ham player would be a great addition to the squad, Scott Parker.  The much travelled central midfielder would add the steel and determination currently missing.  Parker works hard, and gets forward, he will be a similar player to Flamini. 

It is well known that West Ham are strapped financially and despite the protestations from the Hammers, if Arsenal lodged a £12M-£15M bid for Upson and Parker both would be on their way to Arsenal.

Further afield, Velosso’s agent claims that his client will be moving in January for £6M.  This is the player Arsenal tried to sign in the summer for £16M, but finances are tight at Sporting we are no longer in a seller’s market.

Arsene also has eyes on Standard Liege attacking midfielder Defour.   He is another youngster at 22, but will give us the width and trickery that we are missing especially now that Rosicky is unlikely to feature at all this season and Walcott is not due back until March.  The fee for Defour could be as high as £9M.

If Arsene allows Vela to move on loan in January and  Bendtner is sold, we will be short of strikers.  We should not need to look far for a striker and at a knock down price of £4m.  The striker in question is Newcastle’s Michael Owen.  He will leave on a free transfer in the summer, so Newcastle will be reluctant to let him leave for nothing.  Owen is a player much admired by Arsene over the years and this will be the last chance to get him.  Newcastle boss Kinnear has been an admirer of Song and Denilson, if Wenger brings in Velosso and Parker, he can let Denilson go which will sweeten the Geordies into lettign Owen leave.

There was a board meeting at Arsenal this week and the transfer budget was discussed and agreed.  Do not be surprised to see Arsene being brutal in January; our form has had him annoyed this season and last time we were in such a mess he went out and bought Diaby, Adebayor and Walcott for a combined cost of £22M. 

Do not be shocked if Arsene culls certain players and brings in foru to five players.  Apart from Velosso the others are all eligible for the Champions League. If Wenger buys all five, the total cost will be in the region of £30M, less the money recouped on the sale of Bendtner, Gallas and Denilson, then the net cost will be £22M and we will have stronger squad.

January promises to be an interesting window for the Gunners, Arsene knows he blew it in the summer he will not do so again.

Premier League Round-up

Prior to leaving for South Africa Alex Ferguson did what he has accused Real Madrid of doing.  He went on record to say that Man Utd have made an offer for a player who would add to their squad.  In subsequent interviews he made it known that this player is Berbatov.  Having spent the whole week briefing the press that a deal was imminent, Fergie got sick and tired of no deal materialising and sought to push the deal through using the media.

So it appears that it is ok for Fergie to “tap” players up, as he has done  so over the years from Staam, van Nistelroy and Hargreaves, but the moment anybody tries it on with his team he starts throwing his dummy out of the pram.

Daniel Levy has reported Fergie and Man Utd to the FA over their approaches to Berbatov.  No doubt the FA will turn a blind eye to one of their favourite sons and exonnerate Man Utd once again.

Not to be outdone, Rafa Benitez, the hero of the Kop, has decided to go one better than Fergie.  Having initially spent most of the summer trying to unsettle Gareth Barry, the Spanish wheeler dealer has turned his attentions to Tottenham’s Robbie Keane.  Not once, but continually at press conferences Rafa has dropped Keane’s name in interviews.  Levy again is hoping mad and has sent another complaint to the FA.  What Levy does not realise is that Liverpool FC can not do any wrong in the FA’s eyes. 

It will be a busy time at White Hart Lane as Spurs try to offload half a dozen players to balance the books.  Its about time a Tottenham manager got rid of the deadwood that has been accumulated every season by Martin Jol.  The only thing why would Sunderland offer £24M for a bunch of Tottenham no-hopers when Spurs are desperate to get rid of them?

At Wigan, Steve Bruce is trying to re-create the squad he left behind at Birmingham, the same squad that got relegated last season, Bruce the clue is in the word relegated.  Having bought Wilson Pallacios last season, he has added Olivier Kapo and Daniel de Ridder.  Continuing on this path will bring Bruce his reward, relegation.

The credit crunch has hit several clubs this summer with Newcastle, the perennial spenders, not bringing any players in to strengthen a depleted squad.  Whilst two clubs wishing to move on to the next level, Everton and Aston Villa remain quiet.

One of last season’s big transfer movers are very quiet this summer.  In fact West Ham have taken a leaf out of the Iceland marketing tool and are offering buy one get one free, with Zamorra and Pantil the first pair to be offered in this unique selling ploy.