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Arsenal’s bid for Arshavin falls apart (actually, it didn’t)

Andrei Arshavin (AFP) 

Remember when Andrei Arshavin was the hottest transfer target, or at least one of the hottest, in Europe? You remember. Back when he led Zenit St. Petersburg to the UEFA Cup and then followed that up with a great European Championships.

Well that time is fading further into the memory banks and the Russian playmaker STILL hasn't made a move away from Zenit. It looks like he will have to wait until the summer now that a proposed move to Arsenal has fallen apart.

(It looks as though the Arshavin to Arsenal deal has been salvaged and Arshavin is now set to join Arsenal.)

An Zenit spokesman put the blame squarely on the shoulders of Arsenal, which he blamed for trying to low ball but Zenit and Arshavin, who was allegedly offered a contract at half his current salary with Zenit.

"(Arshavin is) getting €3.875 million and the club is offering half," Zenit spokesman Alexie Petrov told the Guardian (UK). "Who would take another job for half the money? Arsenal have been making big waves by saying this would be the big historic transfer in the history of the Gunners. Well, it's bull.

"They thought they could pull this off by saying we are a big club, this is a nice country, all that stuff. But he's not a 16-year-old from Africa. The life in England is more expensive – a car, a house, it's all more expensive in London, and he has to bring his family. He has one kid who is three years old, another who is one year old. It's ridiculous."

The failed talks aren't exactly the way former MLS deputy commissioner Ivan Gazidis wanted to cap his first transfer period as Arsenal's Chief Executive Office. The Gunners currently sit in fifth place in the Premier League, and still haven't found a replacement for Cesc Fabregas, who is out with a knee injury.

The team's failure to land Arshavin could ultimately lead to Arsenal missing out on the Champions League next season, a failure that would have serious financial repercussions.

What do you think of all this? Think Arsenal dropped the ball? Do you see Zenit having more blame in all this? Think Gadizis will keep his job at Arsenal?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Am I missing something? This is Arsenal’s fault.

    If the player is that great and worth that much where are all of the big bidders?

    Poor AA, it’s more expensive in England. Poor baby. The Russian was funny. Just because his side grossly overpaid AA’s salary doesn’t mean everyone will.

    Where are all of the bidders for this superstar?

  2. This pisses me off so much! I am a die hard arsenal fan, and i picked them back in the late 90’s before they became supergood (I didnt hop on the bandwagon) anyways, i have always liked wenger until this year. Sometimes his decisions look bad in the begenning but they end up fine. Letting viera and henry go was tough, but they replaced them with flamini/fabregas, and adebayor, and they have/had played great in their absence. However I am appalled at the way arsenal is. If they are really totally broke cause of the stadium, then they shouldnt be trying to get arshavin, who of course is a national hero in russia and is gonna cost millions. I couldnt believe that Wenger let flamini go for free, after his best year ever, and let hleb and then gilberto silva go as well….and he didnt replace them. The fact that they didnt get anyone during either transfer window shows the world that arsenal has no money and need to be bought out by usmanov or something….ugg i cant believe arsenal, u know ur in trouble when every week the average age on the bench is 17

  3. Jim, I was never attacking Arsenal in particular. I was saying that the table in the EPL has gotten much too rigid because huge bonuses both for making Europe and for staying in the Premier League. Being that Arsenal is a big club which has consistently been in the top four for year, I would welcome them dropping down in order to give another club a chance to play in the Champions League. It’s very simple

  4. Haters will always be haters. (as an arsenal fan) I don’t care if I live 3k miles away what attracts me to the club is the beautiful football and there ability to appear as a club for everyone, and not a club that tries to put up a front like they are for the English (Mancs, Chevs, and Scousers) while their teams barely have any actually english players, and don’t give me this BS about scotland and Ireland as counting because if you ask a real english person their opinion they’ll tell you the racism is still alive. Honestly I wish the press would leave Arsenal alone and talk about Spurs, Newcastle, or Portsmouth which are actual teams of crisis. But instead they like to talk about a teams of quality and promise go figure huh? Keep crying haters we’ll get top 4 don’t anyone worry if anyone’s team had their spine ripped out like Arsenal have with Cesc and Rosicky injured they wouldn’t even dream of still competing in 3 competitions. Dream on haters cause that’s all you can do.

  5. Scott A, you’re not making sense. Arsenal have always spent responsibly– unless you consider almost every single Premiership club to be irresponsible. Name an Arsenal star player over the last 15 years, and you’ll find a reasonable transfer fee. Wright, Bergkamp, Viera, Overmars, Ljungberg, Henry, Pires, Fabregas, van Persie, Adebayor, etc. Wiltord’s fee is STILL the club record, and is millions less than any other big money club. The final fee for Reyes never rose to £17 million– it was dependent on Arsenal’s performance and never got far beyond the initial £10.5 million.

  6. Arshavin is exactly what Arsenal need. Putting down the extra money for him could give them a much greater chance at a CL spot, and should pay for itself. If they’re too cheap… then have fun in the UEFA cup I guess.

  7. AceLucky2121, what you’re saying is exactly the problem I have with the current state of the EPL. I have NO problem with Arsenal; they do nothing worse than Chelsea, ManU, or Liverpool…and they play attractive soccer. They pretty much all have debt. What I am saying is that these big teams have started to view their place at the top of the table as a birthright. If any of them fall out of the top 4 it’s a calamity; managers must be fired…how dare Aston Villa or Everton challenge for a top spot. I like any mixing up of the table at all.
    And as for when Arsenal spent tons, they’re worth 600 million pounds, of course they’ve spent tons. Any club with so much worth and profit is going to spend a bunch. Two examples: Sylvain Wiltord (£13million from Bordeaux in 2000) and Jose Antonio Reyes for £17.5

  8. Scott A…. that’s not a valid reason for Arsenal not to make the 4th spot. Look at Liverpool and Man United their owners took out debts to buy the club. Arsenal debt is from the new stadium. Please tell me when Arsenal ever “spent tons”.

  9. This is the funny thing about Arsenal:

    They play well and you hear how everyone loves them and cheers them on. They play crappy and it’s a Fox Football Fone-In type diatribe on how much Arsenal sucks and they can’t play and they ain’t going anywhere, blah, blah, blah.

    Now I am guilty of this myself when it comes to certain teams and players, but too many hate on Arsenal way too much. It’s like the haters have their own fan club! I hear more sh!t talk about the Gunners than I hear ANYTHING else. CRAZINESS!!

  10. Oh and it’s actually 430 million pounds so a lot more. And the club is valued at over 600 million pounds, which puts them in the upper echelon. My complaints about big money dominating were 100% valid

  11. Chris, you don’t know what you’re talking about. The only reason Arsenal is being relatively frugal at the moment is because they have massive debts and payments from the lavish stadium they build for 430 million dollars. Before that they were spending tons. I don’t like how the big teams are assured of safety and keep reaping the benefits of TV money and Champions League money. Arsenal is just as guilty of this as any other big club. I have no ill will towards Arsenal

  12. Rockzo, i too think that it is much more important to root for the team that exists near you. because i mean rooting for a team that speaks to you is stupid. its much better to chose teams based solely on the random probability that your consciousness happened to spawn in an area around a particular team. if you’re not born near there, too bad. and this isnt just bullshit flowing from my mouth. this idea has tons of historical presendent. like if you had the bad luck to be born black 100 years ago.

  13. “And I’m not even a Spurs fan. I’m just sick and tired of all these bandwagon Arsenal fans I’ve met who have no ties to North London who profess their love for a club 3000 miles away ‘because they play pretty.'”

    RNR Clown: Appropriate name. So how should a fan become a fan of a team not from their hometown? What is your team and why do you cheer for them? Why is it wrong for a person to cheer for a team because they actually play beautiful and effective football? Seems like a better reason than any other.

  14. Much like Russian brides this player seems too good to be true. I’m skeptical whether he is really all that good.

    He got lucky in Euro 2008 IMO and he’s gonna be like Modric was for Spurs this season- ineffective.

  15. Dr. Rockzo:

    Yeah, the EPL would be so much better off with Birmingham up and competing week-in, week-out than Arsenal. Right.

    Scott A:

    You don’t like how sports are all about money, yet you want to see Arsenal, the most frugal and balanced (money-wise) of probably any big team in the world, relegated. Brilliant.

  16. Dr. Rockzo, I’ve met toons of bandwagon Chelsea, Liverpool, Man U and Arsenal fans for different reasons. But I’m kinda hoping for the same thing you are, with no dislike at all for Arsenal, but a different reason. I basically don’t like how sports are all about money now–even though I recognize it’s kind of inevitable. And I like it when leagues get mixed up…big teams relegated, different teams getting into Europe and decreasing the gap, etc.
    Virginia Blue Blood, I pretty much agree. Zenit seems to have not realized that circumstances have changed and some clubs can’t dole out as much money as they could a year ago. If they think he’s worth so much more, sell it to someone else

  17. This is exactly what Arsenal needed. Their squad was really crying out for a lightweight creative midfielder.

  18. Totally off topic, but sky sports is saying that Charlton have made a bid for Watford’s Jay DeMerit in the range of 300,000.

  19. Yeah, wouldn’t want teams in the Premier League playing beautiful football. Rather have that long ball, thug stuff. Genius.

  20. Amazingly enough, I don’t think this is over yet.

    Still might not go through, but it sounds like they still might be working on it.

  21. Zenit are to blame for certain. While the salary is an issue and so is the fee, what you have here is the Russians trying to sell their top prospect and refusing to acknowledge that in light of the world’s heightened financial awareness that what Arsenal would be buying is an unknown quantity in terms of what he brings to a club fighting to get to the Top 4.

    Were the Euros an abberation? Maybe, maybe not.

    But you can’t sell a 27 year-old player who hasn’t played outside of Russia for absolute Top Dollar. If everyone were that convinced of his Talent, you would have seen more than just Spurs and Arsenal looking at the guy. Also, you’re not going to get what was top dollar in the summer anymore. Haircut that figure by 30% and you’re somewhere near what the price SHOULD be.

    All in all – Andrei is going to rot, until he gets his desperation move to Man City, in the Colaship next year.

  22. I believe that Gazidis’s hands were tied when it came to this transfer. The board is too stingy, and didn’t want to pay Zenit and Arshavin for his services. He will move to a better club in the summer. And Arsenal will most likely miss out on Champions League next year. Time to quit being so stubborn.

  23. Awesome. I’m hoping for 1. Arsenal to miss the Champion’s League, 2. For huge financial problems with the club because of it, 3. Which leads to Arsenal going into administration, 4. Which causes a big points penalty, 5. Which causes them to be relegated.

    And I’m not even a Spurs fan. I’m just sick and tired of all these bandwagon Arsenal fans I’ve met who have no ties to North London who profess their love for a club 3000 miles away “because they play pretty.”

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