After watching Millwall deservedly albeit slightly fortuitously eliminate Everton from the FA Cup, I couldn’t help but wonder why Arsenal don’t spend time trawling deeper domestic waters when it comes to their transfer activity. If you want to find a top defender, who actually enjoys doing that job, then Premier League could do worse than give Jake Cooper a second look.
The Millwall defender stops goals, creates them and scores them, and although one was with his hand last night, they all count!
Talking of counting, though, I wonder how much the bean counters at Arsenal would make available for the purchase of such a talent. As Wenger used to say, if I may paraphrase him, domestic talent is more expensive than that brought in from overseas.
Nevertheless, I can’t help but feel there’s generally been an
oversight on the part of the recruitment department when it comes to bringing in British talent. While it’s true that getting value for money is difficult, when there’s genuine talent in the lower divisions, other clubs mine it. For example, look how Dele Ali was plucked by Spurs from relative obscurity. I don’t recall the transfer fee being exorbitant, so all those sound bites about Brits costing too much is no more than ‘bites of sound’ abbreviated without ‘of’.
Bargains can be had, it’s just Arsenal have generally set their sights on overseas purchases. That’s all well and good, but many foreign players need a settling in period. Cooper, already based in London, would not need that. Therefore, my argument is why don’t Arsenal recruit more often from these shores, particularly in a post-Brexit environment, surely it makes sense.
Meanwhile, we’re hearing that the transfer coffers of one of the world’s richest clubs are empty, despite being owned by one of the world’s richest men. It is shocking that a situation like this has come to pass, especially at a time when injuries mean the squad is screaming out for investment.
However, it seems that the best that Arsenal fans can hope for is a player arriving on loan, particularly while Ozil is pocketing hundreds of thousands a week for playing Fortnite and not much else.
Of course, that’s not entirely the German’s fault, as he’s not being selected. However, we all know he’s not being picked in the first eleven because of his lack of workrate. Leopards rarely change their spots, especially if they’ve got used to lazing around under the previous regime and producing a killer ball only when they feel like it.
It seems over for Ozil, but he’s too talented to completely write off. If only if he can marry industry to talent, then he could turn everything around.
Unfortunately, there seems little chance of that. You have to wonder what the geniuses at the club were thinking when they awarded Ozil such a lucrative contract. Now he simply hangs there in the shadows like a noose around the club’s neck.
Meanwhile, the most in-form player will leave on a Bosman, so despite the recent improvements thanks to Emery, the future seems, at best, unstable.
That feeling is exacerbated by the departure of Sven Mislintat, who was hailed as Arsenal’s transfer saviour. I’m wondering if he was made redundant by the fact that Arsenal have no money for transfer fees. There’s not much point having a head of recruitment, if there’s no money to recruit.