After what seems to have been a complex and difficult negotiation process, Arsenal have finally reached an agreement which will see Carlos Vela make his loan-move to Real Sociedad a permanent fixture. After impressing on a season-long loan in San Sebastian, Vela is now on his way back to Spain to finalize a 4-year deal with Real.
A statement on realsociedad.com (roughly translated from Spanish) reads:
“Real Sociedad has reached a tentative agreement with Arsenal Football Club for Carlos Vela plays the next four seasons at the club. The official presentation will take place on Thursday, with the time and place to be specified.
“Negotiations with Arsenal have been complex, but the will of the English club, the effort of our organisation and the willingness of both the player and his agent have become key factors for the left-footed player from Cancun again donning the blue & white shirt.”
The statement goes on to mention that Vela was the “third best scorer in the second-half of the season with ten goals, behind only Leo Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.” I am presuming that the second-half of the season is from January until the end of the season, although don’t hold me to that.
Carlos is undoubtedly a very talented young player, his chipping abilities second only to those of one Lionel Messi, but was unfortunate to have had limited opportunities in North London. He did score a hat-trick against Sheffield United in the League Cup on his full Arsenal debut, but otherwise failed to really show why he deserved a place in the starting line-up on a regular basis. No doubt he will have better success in La Liga.
There is no mention on any new websites of how much the fee will be, but according to @younggunsblog Arsenal will receive £3 million and a 50% sell-on fee.
Carlos Vela insists that he is prepared to fight with Arsène Wenger to ensure that he does not return to Arsenal next season.
Having failed to make a significant impact during a three-year stint in North London, Vela has now reinvented himself in La Liga while on loan at Real Sociedad.
With 6 goals in his last 7 games(including an overhead kick against Villareal on Sunday), the Mexican is now the clubs top goalscorer for the 2011/12 season. Vela has clearly hit form at the best possible time as he looks to prove that he deserves to stay in Spain beyond the summer.
Arsène Wenger has previously suggested that he see’s Vela as a striker in the Eduardo mould, but on this occasion I am afraid that I must disagree. Eduardo was a natural finished and a goal-poacher. Had he not picked up such a horrific injury, I am sure that he would have had a long and successful career at Arsenal. All I remember of Vela was a hattrick against Sheffield United in the Carling Cup and a few fancy chips; as Arsenal fans we only saw a few moments of brilliance in and amongst many lackluster performances. You can’t even argue that he wasn’t given enough time. Vela has made 62 appearances for Arsenal, only 2 short of Jack Wilshere.
“Wenger has the final decision. If he says that he will sell me then I will see what options there are.
“If he says that he wants me to stay then I will fight with him to let me leave because my intention is to not go back.
With a return to The Emirates is seemingly out of the question, Carlos remains hopeful that Arsenal and Real Sociedad can come to an agreement over the summer. Meanwhile, the Daily Mail (not that they are particularly reliable…) are reporting that Real Betis are also preparing a £3.5 million bid for the 23-year-old. Unfortunately for him, a hatrick of Real’s looks very unlikely; Madrid will probably not be making us an offer! Wherever he may go, that £3.5m should come in very handy as we look to bolster our team for the 2012/13 season.
“It is not just a question of feeling comfortable in the city because it is also an economical question.
“My registration belongs to Arsenal and I cannot tell them that I like San Sebastian so they should give me to Real Sociedad.
“If I am asked if I am happy here then I would say that I am happy here but if you ask me if I am going to stay then the answer could be yes and it could be no.”
According to reports that started in Mexico (and that are now all over the Turkish Press), Galatasaray manager Faith Terim has contacted Arsenal over the availability of Carlos Vela – although it is thought that Terim’s first choice is former Gunner José Antonio Reyes.
A few days ago, it emerged that newly promoted Premier League side Swansea City were considering the option of signing Vela, who seems to have attracted interest from several European clubs.
According to Sport 3 (roughly translated):
“One option for Galatasaray is the Mexican Carlos Vela, 22. Fatih Terim (the club coach) has received good reports of the player and has already been in contact with Arsenal.”
Photo from Ronnie Macdonald on Flickr
Vela has made 61 appearances for Arsenal, scoring 11 goals, during three seasons in North London. He has been an Arsenal player since 2006 but was ineligible to play for us until 2008 due to issues with his work visa. UK work-permit restrictions meant that he spent the first 2 years of his Arsenal career on loan at Salamanca and Osasuna.
In September 2008, Vela finally made his full debut for the Arsenal against Sheffield United in the League Cup. During this match he scored a hat-trick as the team (with an average age of just 19 years old) went on to win the game 6-0. Despite this impressive start to his Arsenal career, things do not seem to have gone to plan since.
Vela spent the second half of last season on loan at West Brom, having fallen behind Robin Van Persie, Maroune Chamakh and Nicklas Bendtner in the club’s pecking order, and it is more than likely that Arsenal would be willing to sell him over the summer. He seems to be surplus to requirements and it is unnecessary to keep him at the club for longer than needed. I am sure that he would do well at another club, but it does not look like he would getting much game-time at Arsenal if he were to stay.
Ryo Miyaichi may not be able to play for Arsenal next season due to problems with his work permit. The 18 year old Japanese starlet was signed from Chukyodai Chuyko High School in January, having impressed Arsène Wenger when he trained with the club last summer.
Ryo is continuing to impress during his loan spell at Feyenoord, so much so that the Dutch media refer to him as “Ryodinho” after he was compared to Brazilian star Ronaldinho. He has made 8 appearances so far in the Eredivisie, scoring one goal and making an assist. When interviewed about his loan spell to Feyenoord Miyaichi said:
“I just have to go there and give it a shot… Hopefully one day I will be standing on the pitch at Emirates Stadium.”
Miyaichi has also been clocked running 100 metres in just 10.84 seconds, which is only marginally slower than Theo Walcott.
However, Arsène Wenger has failed to get Miyaichi a “special talent” visa due to several technical difficulties, and it is unknown whether he will be able to play for the club in the future. Arsenal were in a similar position last season. The club failed to gain a work permit for Wellington Silva and were forced to send him out on loan to Levante. Lets also not forget that it took over 2 years for Carlos Vela to be granted a UK Work Permit. Vela was loaned out first to Salamanca and then to Osasuna while the club waited on a decision.
Rumours started to circulate earlier this week that Miyaichi may face a loan spell in Italy to play for Napoli if the visa is not sorted. There are also suggestions that a permanent move may have to be agreed depending on the status of his application. I find it very difficult to understand when an application for a player (who is clearly talented and will highly benefit the team) is being blocked.
Having watched clips of Miyaichi online, I would be extremely disappointed if he was not allowed to join the club. The club is looking to expand its Japanese support, and this represents the perfect opportunity as he would be the first Japanese player to play for Arsenal. There is the possibility that this will all be sorted out within the next few months and that he will be in our squad next season, but this is not looking particularly likely.
I need not remind you that Arsenal have crashed out of 3 tournaments in the last few weeks. The hopes of a quadruple are a distant memory. Notwithstanding the disappointing exits from all of these competitions, we are still in a fantastic position in the league and have a great chance to steal the title from Manchester Utd’s grasp. An issue that has caused some debate between the writers of Straight Talking Gooners is whether we are currently in a better position this year, than we were last year, to win the league. This year, obtaining the title is in our hands. This was never the case last year. Last year we had to rely on Chelsea dropping points. This year, it has been said that we have an easier run in than our title rivals. That said, we still have 10 games to go, and last year the same point was made with only 6/7 games to go. To put this in perspective, although it was never ‘in our hands’, if we had beaten Tottenham, Blackburn, Wigan and City last year, we would have won the league. Let us know what you think by voting in the poll below.
It has been said that the most consistent team will win the league this year. That is still the case. We have been very consistent in the league lately and are on an 11 game unbeaten run. We have dragged ourselves back into contention with some fine performances and have also, at times, managed to grind out key results. We need to take this consistency into the last 10 games and hopefully we will be filling the all too dusty trophy cabinet at the Emirates. Although we probably won’t get many favours from Manchester United, who host Bolton tomorrow, the fact that they are still in two other competitions could prove pivotal in our title bid. Manchester City play Chelsea tomorrow. If City can muster a win, it is likely that the league will truly become a two horse race.
It is worrying that our injury list is growing. Arsenal fans were not happy to hear that Vermaelen will not play again this season. Furthermore, this fact was clear to Arsene Wenger in January, yet he decided not to buy/loan a suitable backup. Djourou’s season is all but over (he is sidelined for 6 weeks). This leaves us with Koscielny and Squillaci in defence. Squillaci is quite frankly not good enough and often puts a damper on the performance of his fellow Frenchman, Koscielny. I believe that Wenger is at fault here.
Although West Brom will be without loanee Carlos Vela, another familiar name, Jerome Thomas, is set to feature for the Baggies. Thomas managed to grab himself a goal in our 2-3 defeat at the Emirates earlier in the season.
Although Almunia was slightly at fault for the Rooney goal last weekend, he was sublime against Barcelona, and if he can continue to put in similar performances, we may not need the help of Mad Jens.
Prediction – 3-1
A week is a long time in football and the players have all had a chance to reflect on the last few performances and refocus on the challenges ahead. I feel that they will come out strongly and grab a few early goals that will hopefully kill of the game. That said, it is likely that West Brom will be able to break though our defence and find the net.
With Manchester United not playing until half past 5, a win against Newcastle would see Arsenal (temporarily) close the gap at the top of the table to just two points. Three points would ensure that Arsenal remain Utd’s strongest contenders, although their unbeaten run is undoubtedly going to put them as the bookie’s favourites.
Newcastle’s defeat to Fulham on Wednesday was their first defeat in 5 games. In relatively good form, they will be looking to do the double over our young team; we all remember Andy Carroll’s goal at the Emirates in November. The Magpies will be without their top scorer – controversially sold to Liverpool on transfer deadline day – and Shola Ameobi, who suffered a fractured cheekbone in their match against Fulham in mid-week.
Arsenal have already won at St James’ Park this season (a 4-0 win in the Carling Cup), and are on good form going into this game, winning their last 6 in all competitions. Like Newcastle, we are missing our top scorer (Samir Nasri, who is out with a hamstring injury), but following our spirited win against Everton (and with Cesc Fabregas finally back to his best form), the team will hopefully continue the strong performances we have seen so far this season.
It would seem that Djourou and Koscielny have developed a relatively strong partnership, but Squillaci is still suspended following his red card against Huddersfield, so both Johan and Laurent will start. Denilson will probably start as our defensive midfielder due to Alex Song’s injury.
Despite his goal in the last game, I suspect that Arshavin will be on the bench. I don’t know what he needs to do to secure a place in the starting line-up this season, but the injury to Nasri will not have harmed his chances. Wenger is giving Walcott a lot of starts this season, and RVP’s form means that he will almost definitely remain our first choice striker.
With RVP, Fabregas and Walcott playing, Newcastle will have to defend really well if they want to get anything from the game, as we have so much quality going forward.
I barely ever predict us to keep a clean sheet, and this game is no exception. The Newcastle player who will provide the strongest attacking threat will be Kevin Nolan (already on 10 goals this season), so our two centre-backs need to track his movements very carefully and try to close him down as much as possible.
Wenger’s news conference yesterday brought both good and bad news for Arsenal fans. Lukasz Fabianski is out for the rest of the season following shoulder injury that requires surgery, but Thomas Vermaelen could be back in contention in time for the game against Barcelona at the Nou Camp.
The transfer window closed on Monday night, and there is only one significant transfer to report. Japanese starlet Ryo Miyaichi has joined the club, and has now gone out on loan to Feyenoord until the end of the season.
Wenger: “We’re delighted that Ryo Miyaichi has joined us. He trialled with us in the summer and has raw ability which has attracted many clubs around the world. We wish him luck in Rotterdam with Feyenoord and we look forward to helping him with his continued progression when he returns to Arsenal.”
Other loan deals saw Aaron Ramsay join Jay Emanuel-Thomas at Cardiff City for a month, as he looks for some playing time to build up his fitness. In addition, Carlos Vela has moved to West Bromwich Albion as Wenger is keen for the young Mexican to gain some Premier League experience.
What a great night! Arsenal won comfortably against a poor Wigan team at the Emirates, while West Ham beat Manchester United 4-0 at Upton Park, leaving Arsenal to walk into the semi-finals of the competition.
There were nine changes from the side that beat Aston Villa 4-2 on last Saturday and, most significantly, Robin Van Persie made his first start since coming back from injury. Arsenal dominated from kick-off. Carlos Vela should have scored after he was put through on goal with a delightful back heal from RVP, but an own goal from Antolin Alcaraz just before half time saw Arsenal go in at the break with the lead they deserved. The second goal came in the 67th minute, with Nicklas Bendnter finishing off a beautiful move that involved RVP and a cross from Vela.
Unable to watch the Arsenal game on TV, I watched the game which would inevitably see top of the league Manchester United destroy bottom team West Ham. How wrong could I have been? With Manchester United 2-0 down thanks to two goals from ex-player Jonathan Spector, I thought I saw a United come-back. Wrong again… West ham ran the Reds ragged, and two second half goals from Carlton Cole saw them through to join us in the semis. Man Utd fans can say what they like about playing a weakened team and not caring about the Carling Cup, but the fact that they have won it for the last two seasons shows that they must at least be putting some effort in!
Arsene Wenger is quoted as saying “You cannot say that it is not important but we can’t make winning a trophy an obsession.” I disagree. I’m not gonna lie… I would quite like to see us win the Carling Cup! It would be stupid not to. A trophy is a trophy and after five years without one I think this is as good an opportunity as any.
Arsenal take on Ipswich (the only Championship team still in the competition after their win against West Bromwich Albion) in the semi-finals in January. The other game will see West Ham taking on an in-form Birmingham team who got a late winner against Aston Villa.
To start with, congratulations to Braga for taking advantage of a poor Gooner display to nick all three points. Both goals were counter attacks and the two finishes were classy.
Arsenal had between 68%-72% of the ball, depending on which statistician you believe calculates possession correctly. The passing game was alright. But there was little spark and innovation in the midfield. Fabregas looked disinterested.
I think he has a few things weighing on his mind. He isn’t a born leader – despite that fabulous show of courage against Barcelona last year when he played with a broken bone. But further to this, Cesc played with plenty of top quality, determined Spaniards throughout the summer. He won a trophy. He returns to Arsenal, having clearly stated his desire to play for Barca, and is surrounded by a bunch of skillful, yet thus far unproven, Gooners. Finally, Cesc has been playing with a hamstring problem, something that Wenger shouldn’t have allowed.
Denilson was tidy, but refused to pass the ball forwards. Wilshere tried his best, but wasn’t on form. Our defence was generally very solid, with Djourou playing well. But, as always, a few lapses in concentration (like in the Spurs game) let the opposition get through our defence and score. No matter how well Gibbs, Squillaci and Djourou play, if they concede those kind of counter attacks on numerous occasions, they are simply not good enough.
Bendtner was absolutely awful. From the first to the last minute, he failed to hold up the ball or make any decent runs in the opposing half. He came deep and crowded out the midfield. Walcott showed some bright moments, but was generally ineffective due to a lack of supply. Rosicky is a great player, but he doesn’t impose himself on matches like Nasri does. He was quite poor last night.
Chamakh made an instant difference with his composure on the ball and heading ability. Gibbs put in a sumptuous cross, at 0-0, and the Moroccan headed the ball down for another substitute, Carlos Vela. One of the most blatant penalty decisions of 2010 was waved away, with Vela getting booked for diving. He moved the ball away and got hauled down. How is that not a penalty? The player got none of the ball and all of the man. Ridiculous.
Anyway, we lost. It makes our route to the knockout stage slightly more difficult. But we will do it. Partizan at home will hopefully be a 10-0 victory. Or 1-0. Any victory will do at the moment!
The Villa game on the weekend will be difficult, but considering Arsenal only seem to lose matches in pairs, I reckon we won’t lose another. My prediction is for a boring 0-0 draw.
We had lots of possession. Gibbs is better than Clichy. Bendtner is now confirmed as crap. Ramsey is back in the reserves (really clutching at straws now…).
We lost. We conceded two goals in the last ten minutes (albeit with ten men on the field). Fabregas (although he has been playing badly) and Eboue got injured. We didn’t create much. Everyone looked bored and lacking determination. Wenger still makes his substitutions far too late in the game. We didn’t get a blatant penalty at 0-0 (which would’ve surely finished the game). Shakhtar won, so we may not win the group. Spurs may be on more points than us in the CL after tonight.