In what becomes the brand new transfer drama story of the week, Samir Nasri looks to go all in and leave the confines of Arsenal for Manchester United after “agreeing in principal to a five year, £90,000 a week gig.” It’s all a bit of flirting really; Nasri shows a little leg towards other teams, United need a midfielder that is a bit younger than they have. And secretly, this is all a lesson for Arsene Wenger about money, Cesc Fabregas and the new style of building a team.
The Premier League has been in an arms race situation for a while now, with top tier clubs being owned by conglomerates and very rich men who can spend freely on whomever they want. As everyone is quite aware, Wenger isn’t as into splashing the cash around and it’s getting to the point where that desire to run things on the cheap(er) side is going to effect the club long term.
Here’s the issue that keeps Arsenal fans up at night; Wenger needs to realistically look at the fact that every day Fabregas stays at Arsenal is another day that Barcelona’s players and Fabregas’ Spanish teammates beg, plead and push him to return to Camp Nou. Fabregas has even hinted around for a while that he wants to move. Nasri, a fine young midfielder is a guy who could thrive under an Arsenal team — without Fabregas. By not upping Nasri’s pay, there is a realistic chance that someone else will pay him what he wants, and if Barcelona decides to really go after Fabregas (which is rumored) this off season than Arsenal loses both guys and faces a landscape in which teams like Chelsea drop £50 on Fernando Torres on a whim.
While I’m just a normal human with no top-shelf managerial experience, there’s a plainly obvious life lesson going on here. Let’s say you’re seeing two women. One of them is very attractive, but gets a lot of attention from guys who have a lot of money, a great reputation and they’d love to start dating them. The other one is dependable, has long term future and only started going out and testing the market because you were too busy staring at the first one. What do you do in these situations?
Arsenal needs to take the hit and “break up” with Cesc before they get dumped. If you’re going to take a loss, try and maximize that loss by getting a lot of money back. No Arsenal fan wants to hear this, but Fabregas is out the door already, Nasri had an equal (if not better) season than Fabregas and if you’re going to lose out, you may as well make a little money off of it and commit to Nasri by upping his pay. It’s the difference between a “top four” team that knows how to do business and a lower tier team that watches as their best players go elsewhere.
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