If the mark that you’ve made it as a blogger is a monumental spam attack, then I’ve hit the big time this week, with a number of unruly peoples (or bots, probably) hammering the site, bypassing most of WordPress’defensive efforts, which frankly make Silvestre’s look watertight.
One long clean up later, and we’re back on track, with a major increase in the protection level around here. If you’re a genuine commenter, don’t worry, you won’t notice the difference.
Ironic that the bots were so interested in the site at a time where absolutely nothing was happening. Perhaps they too were Arsenal fans, idly flicking through Newsnow, only to get bored of reading recycled, rehashed or just plain made up stories.
Because, in truth, nothing has happened, unless you count Fabianski signing a new contract or the announcement of the fixtures for next season. In a surprise twist, we play everyone….twice. Shocker.
It says something about the boredom that sets in over the summer that we actually get interested in the order we play games next season. Sure, it has some impact – you want easier games after Champions League weeks, and it’s always good to make sure you’re not going away the weekend of a Big Four game, but in reality, it doesn’t matter all that much. Anyone think we lost the league because we played the top three in a batch at the end of the season? Or perhaps it had more to do with our poor performances early on.
Honestly, this time of year I am amazed that bloggers manage to do daily posts. A few times over the last week I’ve sat at the keyboard, but decided not to bother until something actually happens. Sure, Ronaldo and Kaka have moved to Madrid for stupid money, but how much effect will that have on us? United will probably end up stronger with some astute signings, but otherwise not one bit.
The papers, however, have taken Madrid’s ridiculous spending spree and inflated the transfer market in their minds. The quoted figures for ‘rumours’ have doubled from this time last year – suddenly £10m doesn’t seem so much. So now Cesc will cost £45m, Villa £50m, and so on. It’s nonsense. Hilariously, this happens at a time when Newcastle’s asking price drops by the day.
As for us, apparently we could be signing any of Sakho, Toure (yeah, him again) or Chamakh, and selling any of Cesc, Van Persie, Clichy, Eboue or, in everyone’s worst nightmare, Bischoff. Strangely, no word on Ade. The vast majority, if not all, of the stories are lies.
The reality is that we’ll get rid of Bischoff, Senderos when he returns from loan (probably), and perhaps Ade if anyone gives us enough cash. If not, he’ll have to stay and fight for his place – maybe that would give him the drive to prove himself all over again.
And in a real news shock, one transfer link might actually be true – Ajax captain Thomas Vermaelen really does seem to be on his way, and is apparently having a medical tomorrow. Whether he will be a success in the Premiership is a moot point at the moment – the fact that Wenger is spending around £10m on a centre half is recognition that he really can see the deficiencies in this side. As for the Dutchman, he is certainly making the right noises:
“I feel so proud, Arsenal is a fantastic club and one that, as a child, I enjoyed watching play. Arsene Wenger stands for nice, attacking football and dares to work with young talents. That appeals to me enormously.”
“A lot will change in my life. Next season I will come up against the best strikers in the world. I am not scared by that, I will give all my body can give. This is one of the most beautiful days of my life.”
Can’t say fairer than that. Although at 23, he might not realise that he’ll actually be an elder statesman, not the young player he considers himself to be.
Over in Sweden meanwhile, Stuart Pearce is toying with Walcott’s confidence, first publicly backing him to shine, then hauling him off at half time, and then only introducing him as a sub in tonight’s win over Spain, in which he looked leagues above many of his peers. Still, I guess it’s good news for us – we don’t want him coming back exhausted.
And that’s it – the sum total of nine days of news. One signing probably on the way, a whole bunch of lies, and some highly exciting fixtures.
Isn’t June fun?