It takes a wise man to be talented at the art of the mind game. Each of the top four managers use mind games in their own way, but there must be an element of humour and subtlety if they are to work as desired.
In other words, a clever man who picks his words with care, understanding psychology and just how to get at people, will succeed. If you have a ability to stoke up an argument with a few words and then back away again, you’ll find yourself a talent for mind games.
Darren Bent is not such a man. In an effort to poke his nose in where it doesn’t belong, he’s been chatting away about Thierry Henry, in the build up to Saturday’s derby:
“If it was me selling him, Thierry would be going for a lot more than that. Barca did well to get him for that price. “
“I went to Spurs a couple of days after he went so comparisons between the two transfers were bound to happen.”
For some reason I find myself doubting Bent’s abilities as a smooth talking negotiator, but even putting that aside, he is right that comparisons were made between the two. Of course, what he completely fails to realise is that the similarity isn’t because Arsenal got ripped off, it’s because Spurs did.
He goes on:
“It’s what Tottenham were willing to pay and what Barca were willing to pay.”
I’d be willing to bet that he was trying to say that Barcelona did particularly well. What he’s actually saying is that Spurs were willing to fork out a fortune for a player who doesn’t really add much to what they already have.
Nice one Darren.
In other news, the international fortnight seems to have gone very well from an Arsenal perspective – given that we usually return to a crocked team, the injury news is surprisingly quiet, while the reports on the players’ performances are encouraging – Eduardo in particular, who scored three times in Croatia’s two matches.
Stuart Pearce wants to see Theo Walcott get more of a run in the side this season, after he failed to impress for him, but I don’t see that happening for a while given the Croatian’s form – it means we will almost always be playing two strikers, which in turn pushes Hleb out wide. Injuries alone will bring the youngster in, but at his age that’s fine.
Two days to go until the real football restarts.