Archive for August, 2011

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Arsenal’s transfer deadline day

This day is usually very interesting for all football fans except Arsenal fans. This time it looks like that Wenger missed the opportunity to bring the right players to Emirates stadium earlier and it looks like busy day also for us. It’s difficult to say if it is bad or very bad, but last three premiership matches showed that we really need new faces in our squad. Wenger didn’t manage to keep his main stars in the team and we now looks much weaker then last season. With the relegation form from Carling Cup final (2 wins from the last 14 premier league matches) it looks clear that without 4-5 new faces this team will not be in the top 4 anymore.

The last match againts United has shown that Arsenal are way behind them and there are many jokes in the internet likes:

After the match, Ferguson offered Arsene Wenger 3 cakes since he felt pity for him, but Arsene didn’t accept to eat cuz he already 8 2.

Monday morning, Mrs.Wenger: “Wake up Arsene, its 9 already!” Arsene: “What? They scored another one??”

Arsenal players didn’t have breakfast, because they 8-2 much last night

and many more…

This cleary insn’t the way how we want to be Arsenal known so ahead of the transfer deadline day we should expect new deals to be accepted.

Now, I will make the summary of Arsenal squad and try to find places which need to get stronger: Goalkeepers, I would say we have enough quality, Wojciech Sczeszny and Lukas Fabianski showed what they are capable of last season and Manuel Almunia(if doesn’t leave) with Vito Mannone are also quality backups. Right fullbacks  are in similar way, Bacary Sagna is proved quality and Carl Jenkinson also showed his abillity so don’t need to bring new faces. The first problem come when we started to talk about central defenders. We have one worldclass, Per Mertesackerbut injury prone Thomas Vermaelen and two good ones Laurent Koscielny and Johan Djourou. The rest are not good enough(Miquel needs experience and rather not to talk about Squillaci). So we could expect one signing here and it looks to be Per Mertesacker from Werder Bremen. He is Germany international, with 75 call ups at 26, great signing. He also had two World cup medals. And for £8m, it is a bargain.Andre Santos Together with him, we could bring another defender, this time left back. With the only one first team left back Kieran Gibbs, who is also very injury prone, this is the position where we need to buy most. And on the way to Emirates is Brazilian leftback Andre Santos. He has 22 caps for Brasil and played previously for Fenerbache Istanbul. Don’t know him so much so I really looking forward to see him in Arsenal colours. Hope he will be good signing. Midfield looked solid last year, but after departures of Samir Nasri and Cesc Fabregas, we are toothless. So another playmaker is needed, but I have no clue, who it would be. Chu Young ParkGossips are that it could be Benayoun, Martin, Arteta, Kaka or M’Villa, but no firm interest. The last category are strikers and with Van Persie, Bendtner, Chamakh, Afobe and most recently Chu Young Park it is clear that somebody should leave. The question if Chamakh on loan to Granada or Bordeaux or Bendtner to a permanent move away (Stoke, PSG, Hamburg or Bremen). We need to wait just around 11 hours.

So the biggest question is about our midfielders and I hope that all the transfers will make arsenal stronger and able to fight for top four. I am sure that this is not the start of the end of Wenger’s era. In Arsene, we trust.

Arsenal transfers of this day:

In:

  • Chu Young Park from Monaco for a fee around £3m rising to £5m
  • Andre Santos from Fenerbache Istanbul for a fee around £6.2m
  • Per Mertesacker from Werder Bremen for a fee around £8m
  • Mikel Arteta from Everton for a fee around  £10m
  • Yossi Benayoun frome Chelsea on a season long loan

Out:

  • Henri Lansbury to West Ham United on a season long loan
  • Giles Sunu to FC Lorient for a fee around £1m
  • Joel Campbell to FC Lorient on a season long loan
  • Armand Traore to QPR for a fee around £2m
  • Niklas Bendtner to Sunderland on a season long loan
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Midseason training

We are right now in the middle of the season and in the Czech republic is used to go for fitness camp before the second half of the season starts. We have a winter break in the middle of the season and my favourite czech football club FC Slovan Liberec are used to go to a winter camp into the mountains. They spent their time there by cross country skiing  or in gym. FC Slovan are really succesfull so I have been trying to do the things like they do and I decided to go with my hattrick team for a fitness camp.

But there is one problem. They have winter break in winter but now it is summer. We have been thinking about that but because our financial problems, we couldn’t afford travelling to Australia or New Zealand, where is the winter now. So we took our skis and went to the nearest hill, to the Petřín hill(very close to Prague Castle and the historical centre of Prague, full of tourists). We had a training session there and there is a video from the end when I(the blue one) raced with the young midfielder Matouš Recman(brother of Šimon, was on trial with us but we didn’t buy him) 😀

Enjoy 😉

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The mixture of success and failure

The seventh week of the season caught our team in a good league mode, when we beat one of the title contenders but we weren’t able to start ripanj trophy with a win and we concede our first loss since the cup exit. If you are interested in these matches, scroll down and read the post-match thoughts from both matches.

With half a season coming, we played our first competitve friendly ever and I must say that we still expected to win. But our opponent suprised us and fielded very strong lineup, which contained many firsteamers (including their player with highest TSI). I wasn’t able to watch the game live so when I opened hattrick after the match and saw the result I was scared what happened (If I got two reds or so…). But the reason was dicovered soon. With too many firsteamers our reserve team got quite good and I am proud of them. We are sad that our opponent didn’t respect the friendly – fair play rule and he got us to the huge problem. We will propably need to win our last match if we want to advance. The next (second) group stage match should be ‘piece of cake’ even if we will play with our reserve team.

The second match was very special to our team, because we played our first match in the newly reconstructed arena with the capacity 40 000 spectators. And the fans didn’t dissapointed us and sold out the stadium. The only 124 free places were in the VIP box because our general sponsor TOI TOI had to install new WC boxes to the stadium and their staff didn’t do it in time ;-). But back to the match. Our top scorer made the fans happy with quick brace in just 16 minutes. With Alberto Reily getting one back our set piece taker Fausto Corona increased our lead by unusual shot from the right wing (He played left back 😀 ). Our coach will need to explain to our leftback how to play his role :D. They managed to put one back and made the final moments more dramatic but then the final whistle blown and we could celebrate our 14th win in a row in the league. What is also interesting, that we played third match against the second in our league this season and we will play another one on Saturday. With seven games, seven wins and eight points lead we are heading straight for the title and hopefully for promotion.

I want to congarts to Michal Belšán, who fought hard to get his first points in fifth division and now looking to save his league by stunning win. The next game could decide. Keep my fingers crossed!

I also can’t forgot to mentioned the loss of MS-Odense, which came in difficult time against strong opponent. But everybody know that this could change and that the next match is the time for revenge!!

Now it is time to mid-season training camp(expect new article :D). This is the only way how to overcome the horrible Arsenal start to the season. :-( The only two positive things are that things could only get better and that we are above Spurs…

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Fehrmann – four wins to the title

The next prematch interview is here and today, we have visited main coach Johannes Fehrmann in Prague hospital Královské Vinohrady. We asked him some questions and now we offer to you his responses.

Hi Johan, what are you doing here, in the hospital?

Hi, that’s because we don’t have any doctors so I have to go to the hospital for treatment.

Oh, that is quite unpleasant. How do you manage to train and prepare your team to league matches?

You know, it is very difficult, but I have a lot of time here so I study our opponents here. With training, it is easy, we have many assistans so they do that job instead of me and they are really succesfull.

That means?

That Zdeněk Krajc become the first defender in our team to reach magnificient defending, with Milan Res and Robert Gringo likely to follow him in next three weeks. Also Zdeněk is the second former Kamenice Lamers Academy player to reach something magnificent in our team.

And what do you think about upcoming matches?

The next four will be curicual, if we win all of them, we would be champions. We play against recently second and third, so it is like a mini tournament for a title, where we have slight advatage.

After that four matches, it will still be  5 matches to the end, are you sure with that?

Yes, you know, we then play three very weak opponents so we can expect three wins and with two matches to the end nobody could get on level on points with us.

What about Ripanj Trophy, when this cup starts?

On Wednesday, We have booked the first match against Dragon boy’s FC and we are looking forward to it. But it will be very difficult to beat them because our reserve team have overall bad form.

Before this interview, you mentoied that your youth academy will play in another tournament.

Yes, that’s true. We were happy with the cup we played before so we decided to play in another tournament. If you want to join, visit this thread at hattrick forum.

Ok, thank you for this interview and enjoy your day by watching your game against King Baník and than the Arsenal game againts Liverpool. (streaming links here) – hopefully two wins.

So that was short interview with our coach and I hope that you will join the cup of youth academies (balinho has already joined) and good luck in today’s games…

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Just two weeks left…

It’s hard to say that, but when you look at the best premier league clubs and you compare their amount of  transfer fees, there is just one team, who is different. It’s far to early to say if it is good or bad, but Arsenal are the only team from the top five(Arsenal, Chelsea, ManU, ManCity, L’pool) who sold more than bought. Look at this table:

Team players in players out balance
Arsenal £22,600,000 £47,500,000 +£24,900,000
Chelsea £30,350,000 £18,400,000 -£11,950,000
L’pool £49,300,000 £4,050,000 -£45,250,000
ManCity £60,000,000 £18,500,000 -£41,500,000
ManU £52,900,000 £8,700,000 -£44,200,000

And it’s by far… When you consider that Arsenal are likely to sold Samir Nasri to Manchaster City for a reported fee around £23m and Chelsea still in talks with Luka Modric and Juan Mata(also linked with Arsenal) the gap between Arsenal and the other teams could be even bigger. This could be a massive masterpiece from Wenger, if he would be able to keep with the top of the table up. But as I said, transfer window isn’t close and some expensive transfers still could happen.

We have gone through difficult week, whe our capitan went to Barcelona and I really hope, that this year, we will play them in the Champions league and we will finally knock them out. As a replacement, we bought Joel Campbell for  £1m (Cesc left for £35m) from Costa Rican team Saprissa. 😀 Interesting…

Last week Arsenal showed their quality in defence, when they managed to keep two clean sheets in a row(no suprise for me because we had our best defenders available) but we struggle to attack. It is not difficult to find a problem of that. We sold Fabregas, Nasri didn’t play because he will probably leave, Wilshere injured and in the first game also Walcott injured and in the second Van Persie suspended. Our key players weren’t available and I am really afraid of the Saturday’s game againts reinforced Liverpool. Without our only one first team signing Gervinho(suspended), Fabregas, Nasri and Wilshere also unaviable our attack leading by newly-promoted capitan Van Persie will not have easy task. Also defence without Alex Song(suspended) Tomas Rosicky(rested), Armand Traore and Kieran Gibbs(both injured) will need to show their best to deny Liverpool atack. Without them, our lineup could looks like this:

Sczeszny – Jenkinson, Koscielny, Vermaelen, Sagna – Frimpong, Ramsey – Arshavin, Van Persie, Walcott – Chamakh.

My tip for a result is 2-1 for Arsenal 😀

So just two weeks left till the transfer window closes and there is the third match of the season which will show us the strenght of Arsenal “reserve” team againts one of the title contenders.