Arsenal have made a late move to sign Thomas Partey from Atletico Madrid before tonight’s transfer deadline, according to Goal.
The Ghana international – who has a release clause of £45 million (€50m/$58m) – has been a priority target for the Gunners all summer.
Discussions with Atletico have taken place during the past few months, with Arsenal hoping to land the midfielder for a fee less than his release clause, but Atletico have consistently stated that the only way Partey will be leaving this summer is if that clause is activated.
Arsenal have previously indicated that the release is too high, but Goal has been told that stance has now changed and Arsenal are willing to meet the clause and have indicated such to La Liga, who hold the player’s registration.
Arsenal fans were very delighted with the unique performance of Dani Ceballos as many said he is really a joy to watch, especially in the second half of Arsenal Premier League home game with Sheffield United at the Emirates Stadium today.
Ceballos performance was very impressive despite been quiet in the early minutes of the game, he easily won balls from the opposition and always tries to find Bukayo Saka with good through balls, he also seemed to be the man at the heart of the arsenal play and his absence was felt after he was substituted.
Arsenal was apparently over relying on him to play out from the back, control the game tempo and play effective finals third passes to the front three, which is far too much responsibility for one central midfielder, but yet he still proved to be the best player on the pitch.
Dani Ceballos starts against Sheffield United: He made 92% pass accuracy, 82 accurate passes, 2 key passes, 3 long balls, 3 dribbles, 1 foul won, 2 interceptions, and 4 duels won.
Daily Watch Press has gathered from reports making the rounds that Mikel Arteta led Arsenal have submitted a new offer for Lyon’s playmaker Houssem Aouar and the deal is close to matching the player’s asking price.
The gunners are in the market for a modern day central attacking midfielder as Mesut Ozil doesn’t seem to feature in the managers plans for the future.
Houssem has also been on the radar of Juventus and Manchester city although none of the clubs decided to pursue their interests in the player further.
Lyon had earlier on rebuffed a player plus cash offer from arsenal for the France international and were holding for only an outright cash deal.
Arsenal are now said to have submitted a new bid for the player who is rumoured to be interested on the move to north London this summer.
The new bid is alleged to be very close to matching the demands set by the Michel Aulas owned club and a response from the Ligue 1 side is imminent for the deal to go through.
Goalkeeper Alex Runarsson has joined us on a four-year contract from French club Dijon.
The 25-year-old Iceland international (full name Runar Alex Runarsson) joined the Ligue 1 club in July 2018 and made 13 appearances for them in all competitions last season.
Alex started his career with KR Reykjavik in his home country. He went on to join FC Nordsjaelland in Denmark, where he made 62 appearances during a three-year spell, before moving to Dijon.
Technical director Edu said: “We’re very pleased to welcome Alex to our squad. We have been monitoring him for some time and from the analysis, he has strong attributes that we look for in a goalkeeper and as a person.”
Mikel Arteta added: “We want to create healthy competition for places and we look forward to seeing Alex bring further depth to the goalkeeping position.”
Alex will wear the number 13 shirt, but the transfer is still subject to the completion of regulatory processes.
The Icelandic goalkeeper grew up watching the likes of David Seaman and Jens Lehman, and now he has the chance to follow in their footsteps.
“I’m just extremely happy, extremely proud, it is a big day for me and my family. I can’t wait to get started!” he told Arsenal.com.
“It is one of the biggest clubs in the world – they’ve won the Premier League 13 times, the FA Cup 14 times, it is a huge club and obviously playing in the Premier League as well, it is a win-win situation.
“I know it is going to be a lot of hard work, but I am ready to do everything I can to get the most amount of minutes as possible.”
Runarsson worked with our goalkeeping coach, Inaki Cana, when they were both in Denmark and he says the Spaniard is a key factor in him making the move.
“Our relationship, since we got to know each other four years ago, has been very good,” he said. “We have always been in contact even though I was playing in France and he was coaching here in England.
“The fact that he is here, it is very important to me that I know somebody here and I know that he knows my qualities, and what I need to improve and what I can bring to the club. I think we will be a very good match, for the second time in my career!”
Arsenal (Gunners), certainly has a rich tradition when it comes to club honor, trophy success and great managers such as Arsene Wenger.
They are also the first team in the English Football history to finish an entire season without losing a single game and this occurred sixteen years ago, that is in the 2003/2004 season to be exactly. And that achievement gave them the nickname “The Invincibles” .
Its been sixteen years since then, and we’re not expecting such to take place at least anytime soon, all Arsenal enthusiasts can just sit back, cross their fingers and hope for a great campaign under boss Mikel Arteta, who should have also made this list had it been stretched a little more, he is Arsenal’s 34th all time leading goal score with 15 goals; Not bad considering he was more of a holding midfielder.
Now here are Arsenal’s All Time 20 Top Goal Scorers in ascending order:-
1. Thierry Henry
Thierry Daniel Henry, the French World Cup winner singed for Arsenal for £11 Million in 1999 from Juventus and stay with Arsenal from 1999-2007 and also came back on loan for a short spell in 2012.
2. Ian Wright
Ian Wright, the English striker signed for Arsenal in September 1991 for £2.5m from Crystal Palace and stay from 1990- July 1998.
3. Robin Van Persie
Robin Van Persie, the Dutch striker joined Arsenal from Feyenoord in 2004 for £2.75 Million. He stayed with Arsenal between 2004-2012.
4. Dennis Bergkamp
Dennis Bergkamp, the Dutchman joined Arsenal from Inter Milan in 1995 and stayed with Arsenal from 1995-2006.
5. Olivier Giroud
Olivier Giroud, the French Ligue 1 winner with Montpellier joined Arsenal in 2012 and stayed with Arsenal from 2012-2018.
6. Theo Walcott
Theo Walcott, the English striker signed for Arsenal in 2006 from Southampton for £5 Million and stayed with Arsenal between 2006-2018.
7. Robert Pires
Robert Pires, the French Midfielder joined Arsenal for £6 Million in 2000 from Olympique de Marseille and stayed with Arsenal between 2000-2006.
8. Pierre Emerick Aubameyang
Pierre Emerick Aubameyang, the Gabon striker joined Arsenal for £56 Million (€64 million) from Borussia Dortmund in 2018 to Date.
9. Alexis Sanchez
Alexis Sanchez, the Chilean striker joined Arsenal from Barcelona in 2014 and stayed with Arsenal between 2014-2018.
10. Fredrik Ljungberg
Fredrik Ljungberg, the Sweden International Midfielder, joined Arsenal from Halmstad in 1998 and played for Arsenal between 1998-2007.
11. Emmanuel Adebayor
Emmanuel Adebayor, the Togolese striker of Nigerian decent signed for Arsenal from Monaco in 2006 and stayed between 2006-2009.
12. Aaron Ramsey
Aaron Ramsey, the Welsh Midfielder moved to Arsenal in 2008 in a £5 Million deal from Cardiff City and stayed at Arsenal between 2008-2019.
13. Alexandre Lacazette
Alexandre Lacazette, the French International signed for Arsenal in 2017 from Olympique Lyon and stayed in Arsenal between 2017-Date.
14. Francesc Fabregas
Francesc Fabregas, the Spanish Midfielder joined the Arsenal Academy from Barcelona, La Masia in 2003 and stayed at Arsenal between 2003-2011.
15. Mesut Ozil
Mesut Ozil the German playmaker, joined Arsenal in September 2013 in a £42m move from Real Madrid and stayed at Arsenal between 2013-Date.
16. Sylvain Wiltord
Sylvain Wiltord, the French Midfielder joined Arsenal 2000 from Bordeaux and stayed in Arsenal between 2000-2004.
17. Nwankwo Kanu
Nwankwo Kanu, the Nigerian striker joined Arsenal in 1999 from Inter Milan and stayed in Arsenal between 1999-2004.
18. Patrick Vieira
Patrick Vieira, the French Midfielder joined Arsenal from A C Milan for a fee of £3.5 Million in 1996 and stayed at Arsenal between 1996-2005.
19. Paul Merson
Paul Merson, the English striker started his footballing career Arsenal. After making his debut for Arsenal in the 1986/87 Season he had a loan spell with Brentford in 1987. And stayed at Arsenal between 1985-1997.
20. Santi Cazorla
Santi Cazorla, the Spanish Midfielder joined Arsenal in 2012 from Málaga for a fee of £10 Million due to financial difficulties considering he signed for Malaga a Season before for £21 Million from Villarreal. And stayed with Arsenal between 2012-2018.
The list started off with one of Arsenal’s greatest player ever, and ended with a man who did remarkably well, in his time at the Emirates with the gunners.
Arsenal have been making tremendous progress in the transfer market, they have so far brought in three players without losing any of their top players but all that has reportedly changed now as Aston Villa have snapped up one of their highly rated star.
The Villians have been in search of a goalkeeper and Arsenal’s Emiliano Martinez has been their top target, latest reports suggest the player is now an Aston Villa player after the deal was confirmed by –Fabrizio Romano.
The 27 year old shot stopper was absent as Arsenal began their 2020/21 campaign with a win 3:0 win against Fulham, it was later reported that he was absent because of his ongoing medical at Aston Villa, Arsenal valued the player at £20m and Aston Villa have reportedly matched the players valuation as a bid of £16m offer plus £4m in add ons.
After selling Emiliano Martinez Arsenal are looking to sell some players and make new additions to their squad.
Atletico Madrid are refusing to negotiate Thomas Partey release clause of £50m the Spanish club are determined to keep the player but they will only sell if Arsenal match the £50m release clause.
Houssem Aouar is another Arsenal target but Olympic Lyon are still turning down any swap deals Arsenal have offered but they are willing to sell for £60m.
Fabrizio Romano has also confirmed that Arsenal have extended the contract of their club captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
As the 2020-21 Premier League season kicks off on Saturday, where Fulham hosted Arsenal in a 0:3 encounter for the curtain-raiser in a stadium unable to welcome fans and missing one of its four stands.
It represents great symbolism for the campaign ahead: Is anyone really ready to play football?
Half-baked transfer activity, a farce of a pre-season and an international break that interrupted vital preparation time would suggest no. Alas, we move on.
Football is a business that must continue, and as post-lockdown football in June taught us, it will only take a few matches for everyone to get back up to speed and things to feel pretty normal again. Heck, we might even get some fans in by Christmas.
All of these uncertainties make predicting the Premier League table and the winner for the campaign ahead even more impossible than usual, but have we ever shied away from a challenge? Absolutely not. So let’s give it a go!
20. West Bromwich Albion
The summer business has been solid and well thought through, but as so many promoted sides have found over the past few years, the step up in quality is serious.
It’s tough to have faith that West Brom’s collection of strikers (Charlie Austin, Kenneth Zohore and Callum Robinson) can score the goals that keep them up, while the first run of fixtures (Leicester City, Everton, Chelsea, Southampton, Burnley) is rough.
Once you get into a downward spiral in the Premier League, it’s hard to break out of.
Fulham have been promoted as a much more settled unit than in 2018, allowing them the chance at a much smoother summer of business. But like with West Brom, it feels like what they’ve done (at least so far) probably isn’t enough.
That could change in the weeks to come, but concerns over the attack’s potency and the defence’s ability to cope are fair. Captain Tom Cairney needs to shine much brighter than he did two years ago, though injuries played a part in his previous struggles in the Premier League.
18. Brighton & Hove Albion
You’re going to start sensing a theme here: When it comes to Brighton, who scores the goals?
Outside of Neal Maupay, who managed a solid 10 last season, the Seagulls badly need Leandro Trossard to step up more regularly and the talented Alexis Mac Allister to explode.
There’s a lot to like about this Brighton side under Graham Potter, but it’s hard to escape the feeling they don’t feel particularly threatening. They’re one of four clear contenders for 18th, and it’s a tough spot to call, but they’re the pick.
17. Crystal Palace
Palace have committed to freshening up their side and getting a little younger in the transfer market, which is a crucial step for them; it had felt a little like they were sleepwalking toward relegation in previous years.
Eberechi Eze will steal focus from opposing defences and keep them more honest toward Wilfried Zaha on the opposite side. That, plus Roy Hodgson’s reliable coaching in the clutch, is what probably keeps them up.
16. Aston Villa
It’s been a nervy summer for Villa as their pursuit of a striker hit dead end after dead end, but Ollie Watkins has finally signed, and he transforms their prospects in the final third.
Add his speed and potency to the fact that this group of players continue to rise to every challenge set to them—the most recent one being a remarkable eight points in four games to survive relegation in July—and it feels silly to bet against them, particularly with Jack Grealish still around.
15. West Ham
Arguably the most difficult team to place in the table, West Ham are, quite literally, anyone’s guess.
On talent levels alone, they’ll be more than fine; Lukasz Fabianski, Issa Diop, Declan Rice and Michail Antonio form a great spine, Tomas Soucek is emerging as David Moyes’ new Marouane Fellaini and they have a glut of playmakers to sprinkle on top.
The concern is just how combustible the club is. When your captain is tweeting angrily about player sales, you know things aren’t quite right—and that’s a threat that constantly hovers over the Hammers and puts them in relegation contention.
14. Newcastle United
A predicted table compiled two weeks ago would have had Newcastle in the relegation zone, no doubt. There was more than a fair share of fortune attached to quite a few of their results last season, and had the same side continued into 2020-21, it probably wouldn’t have gone well.
But the club clearly recognised this, and in recent days, they have pulled off a series of blinders in the transfer market. Callum Wilson, Ryan Fraser and Jamal Lewis have followed Jeff Hendrick (the most Steve Bruce player ever), greatly strengthening the side and solving problem positions.
It’s now pretty easy to see the Magpies gliding to safety.
13. Leeds United
A newly promoted side finishing as high as 13th isn’t such a bold prediction any longer—particularly in light of Sheffield United’s top-half finish last season—but this will still take some by surprise.
Quite simply, it’s all about the manager, Marcelo Bielsa. A figure held up as the tactical inspiration for Mauricio Pochettino, Pep Guardiola and more, his high-pressing, abrasive tactics will take many by surprise and take a while to adjust to.
Add this to the fact that they have bought well—Rodrigo and Robin Koch are very good players—and a quick start (that opening game against Liverpool aside) that sees them sail to safety is coming.
12. Sheffield United
Ah, yes—the ominous second season. So many promoted sides fall foul of it, as it can be so hard to sustain momentum over a break and into another campaign.
A 12th-placed finish would be a drop of four places for the Blades on last season, but most fans would accept a stabilisation campaign. They will be less of an unknown but just as difficult to play against in midfield, just as difficult to break down and just as robust up front.
Not a single signing in sight for Burnley, which is probably cause for concern.
But Sean Dyche and his men are bomb-proof; a legion of people have predicted them to go down every season since promotion (this writer did last year), and they continually defy those suggestions.
They have a strong, robust spine, England’s best goalkeeper, an excellent prospect in Dwight McNeil and a battering-ram strike force that still bullies defences.
A 10th-placed finish would probably disappoint Everton, but the gap between where they are and where they want to be is absolutely massive—bigger, perhaps, than they realise.
Signing Allan, Abdoulaye Doucoure and James Rodriguez represents potentially transcendent business, but we’re holding back a little on the Toffees because there’s a lot to put in place before they take off. We need to see it.
If post-lockdown football is anything to go by, Southampton are a rising force that look set to hit the 2020-21 campaign running.
Their behind-closed-doors points tally (18) was bettered only by those of the two Manchester clubs as Ralph Hasenhuttl’s ideas fully set in and his team swept opponents away one by one.
A ninth-placed finish will need Danny Ings to hit top form again, Che Adams to rise up alongside him and the defence to remain as stout and reliable as it was in June and July.
8. Leicester City
We shouldn’t be talking about Leicester City here at eighth because their season prospects should be so much greater.
Their post-lockdown slump saw them slip from third to fifth, missing out on UEFA Champions League qualification as things unravelled a little. It’s hardly an unfamiliar story wherever Brendan Rodgers is involved, and the trend has been that when that happens, Rodgers has struggled to claw it back.
With a crowded schedule because of their Europa League involvement and no Ricardo Pereira (injury) or Ben Chilwell (transferred)—though Timothy Castagne is an excellent pickup—we’re a little down on the Foxes this term.
7. Tottenham Hotspur
Talentwise, Spurs are a top-five outfit, no question.
But the club are up against other issues this season that are beyond their control—namely, the ludicrous playing schedule they face because of their involvement in four competitions.
Thanks to the Europa League qualifiers and the Carabao Cup third round, they could play seven games in September, with the first coming on the 13th. The squad as it stands can’t handle that; they need three or four more through the door to cope, physically, with the demands that beckon.
Perhaps seventh is too much of an adjustment—and were it not for the schedule, Spurs would be higher—but it just seems impossible for Tottenham to play up to their full potential.
6. Wolverhampton Wanderers
While Spurs’ schedule has filled up, Wolves’ looks pretty clean. We’re tipping that as a difference-maker between the two.
Even having lost Matt Doherty to Spurs, Wolves represent one of the strongest clubs in the division, and now they’re able to focus solely on domestic matters, they should rise up the table again.
The quality of Raul Jimenez, Joao Moutinho, Ruben Neves and Adama Traore is undoubted, and the defence will be as strong and combative as ever.
Arsenal in fifth is a big call, but they’re on the up, and there’s a lot to like about what Mikel Arteta has done over the course of 2020.
Adding Willian to an already strong attacking corps gives them incredible flexibility in how they line up, while the addition of Gabriel Magalhaes goes a long way to finally shoring things up at the back.
With Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang spearheading a tactically sound and intriguing side, they’re in line for a very good season.
4. Manchester United
United have been generally superb in 2020, with Bruno Fernandes representing the final piece in what became a very, very good starting XI.
But it’s clear they need more players to take a big step forward this season. As soon as one of the 11 players they came to rely on during that goal-filled run post-lockdown ducks out, the team will take a step back.
Placing them in fourth is a show of respect for how good they can be but also recognition of the fact that they need three or more new faces to be able to sustain that sort of level all campaign long.
Chelsea, they’ve been busy, haven’t they?
Six signings, five of which directly upgrade the first team, have whipped fans into a frenzy of optimism and hope. Can they mount a title challenge, or at least close the frankly cavernous gap to last season’s top two?
The former still feels impossible, but the latter is within their grasp. If they can pull to within 10 or even 15 points of Liverpool and Manchester City (they finished 33 points off the title in 2019-20), riding on the wings of Timo Werner and Kai Havertz, that’s a building block toward a future challenge of their own.
The agonising wait for their first Premier League title is over; the 2019-20 campaign, however tumultuous, felt like “mission complete” for Liverpool and their jubilant fans.
It will be interesting to see what their title defence looks like given how this summer’s course has run. While the Reds have invested in just a back-up left-back, passed on Timo Werner and are threatening to do the same with Thiago Alcantara, Manchester City have purchased more aggressively and are threatening to continue, per B/R’s Dean Jones.
1. Manchester City
So, while Liverpool may be 5 per cent flatter, having achieved the ultimate, City will be the opposite. There will be a hunger to them in 2020-21 after a genuinely disappointing previous campaign; the last time Pep Guardiola endured such a season, his side bounced back with 100 points.
None of this is to discredit the Reds’ motivation or professionalism, but in such a tight race between two elite sides, 5 per cent of something either way could decide it. We’ll tip City, the wounded animal with a point to prove, to regain the title this term.