Gooner Talk Archives for January 2009

Maidenhead friendly scheduled

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An Arsenal youth side will take on Maidenhead United in a pre-season friendly on Tuesday 28th July. More details on friendly fixtures will be released as we get them. Admission to the game will be as follows: Adults: £10 Concessions: £6 Under 16s: £2

Fans Opinion: “We have the players to play 4-3-3″

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We have the players to play 4-3-3 and 4-2-3-1. Look at our attackers and midfielders who can adapt to several positions. In a 4-3-3 GK: Almunia, Fabianski DR: Sagna, Eboué DL: Clichy Gibbs, Traoré DC: Touré, Djourou DC: Gallas, Vermaelen, Song DMC: Song, Denilson, Diaby MC: Cesc, Ramsey, Denilson MC: Nasri, Rosicky, Wilshere AMR: RVP (plays there for the Netherlands, Walcott, Arshavin, Nasri, [.

VIDEO: Rampant Germans batter Walcott & co in final

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Arsenal release Reserve defenders

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League 2 side Dagenham & Redbridge have announced the signing of Arsenal full back Abu Ogogo on a two-year deal deal. Born in Epsom in November 1989, Abu began his career as a trainee at Arsenal. He signed his first professional contract for the Gunners' in September 2007. Although not making any first team [.

Cana given ‘permission’ to leave Marseille

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Marseille's combative midfielder Lorik Cana has been granted permission to leave the Ligue 1 club this summer. The 25-year-old is a target of many clubs around the world, most notably Arsenal, Liverpool, Wolfsburg and Spurs. L'OM's sporting director Jose Anigo admits that they will not stay in the way of their skipper if he does [.

VIDEO: Brazil triumphant in Confederations Cup final

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Reported Gunners' target Felipe Melo helped Brazil to overcome a 2-0 lead and defeat the USA 3-2 in the Confederations Cup Final. For 74 minutes of the FIFA Confederations Cup final, it looked like a massive upset was taking place. But that's when Brazil turned the clock to midnight on the American run to the [.

Cesc finally gets deserved rest!

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Arsenal skipper Cesc Fabregas is expected to fly on holiday in the next couple of days as the 22-year-old reflects on finishing third in the Confederations Cup with Spain. Full Article To Come

Turkey’s teen sensation wants Arsenal move

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Fenerbahçe's 16-year-old wonderkid Mehmet Topçu is attracting interest from a whole host of European clubs, with Premier League giants Arsenal said to be leading the race for his signature. Full Article Coming Shortly.

American President inspires van Persie

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Robin van Persie is looking up to none other than US President Barack Obama, after the Gunners' forward revealed that Arsène Wenger gets inspiration from the American during his team talks. The 25-year-old bared all in an interview with News of the World and surprisingly admitted that French tactician Wenger studies Obama to gain more [.

Wenger: Why I stayed + Ade & Cesc are going nowhere

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Arsenal boss Arsène Wenger has spoken about why he chose to stay at the Emirates Stadium instead of leaving for the new Galactico era at Real Madrid. Wenger is currently on holiday in Villefranche-sur-Mer, where he lived in 1987-94, and was yesterday honoured with a medal after his glory with French giants AS Monaco.

PICTURE: Sp*rs ‘keeper in camouflage

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Time to laugh at our arch-rivals once again. This time, it's not for their shocking form in the league, but instead, their new goalkeeper kit. Is Heurelho Gomes wearing a hoody? Whatever it is, it's definitely going to be joked about next season.

Music legend Michael Jackson dies – R.I.P

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It's very rare that I would dedicate an article to the death of someone non sports-related, but last night, a music legend passed away in Michael Jackson. Paramedics were called to the singer's Beverly Hills home at about midday on Thursday after he stopped breathing. He was pronounced dead two hours later at the UCLA [.

Walcott: “You’ve got to be angry coming on the pitch”

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England Under-21's play their European Championship semi-final against Sweden tomorrow evening and Theo Walcott is desperate to face the in-form Swedes. Despite being a regular in Fabio Capello's senior side, whizkid Walcott opted to play for the Under-21's as well as the senior's friendlies much to Arsene Wenger's annoyance.

VIDEO: Vela & Dos Santos combine for Mexico win

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Arsenal striker Carlos Vela inspired Mexico to victory over Venezuela last night — after combining with Tottenham's Giovani dos Santos. The International friendly was an experimental game for El Tri coach Javier Aguirre who used a number of fringe players in the starting eleven. Spurs forward dos Santos set-up reported Portsmouth target Vela for the [.

Cesc commits to Arsenal AGAIN!?

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It's starting to become a bit of a bore for many tabloid-reading Gooners'. Our ever-loyal skipper Cesc Fabregas has once again committed himself to Arsenal despite saying the same thing repeatedly for the past season or so. December 08 'My Future Belongs At Arsenal FC' April 09 'What I Want Is To Stay' June 09 [.

Reports: Russian giants receive bid for ‘keeper

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CSKA Moscow rejected a bid from Arsenal for goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev, according to the Russian press. Life.RU, the news source that broke the Arshavin transfer story, revealed that Arsene Wenger's men have put in a £12 million bid for the Russian international. Of course, these reports could easily be rebuffed, but if you remember correctly [.

Gilardino DIDN’T say Melo will be ‘sold’!

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Fiorentina striker Alberto Gilardino has categorically denied saying that his team-mate and reported Arsenal target Felipe Melo will probably be 'sold' this summer. British tabloid The Daily Mail latched onto quotes from the Italian press earlier this evening, but they were denied just an hour ago after Gilardino insisted that his comments were completely [.

Xavi reveals Cesc’s nickname

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Barcelona midfield maestro Xavi revealed Cesc Fabregas' nickname in the Spanish national team. Both players are in South Africa ahead of their Confederations Cup semi-final game with the USA tomorrow evening. Xavi however, decided to give his opinion on the nicknames of his compatriots instead of the game itself!

Wenger praises Danish hitman Bendtner

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Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger is expecting much more from Nicklas Bendtner next season and revealed that he'll play a larger role in the Gunners' team next season. The 21-year-old Danish striker, who scored 15 goals in 50 appearances last campaign, had an on-off season due to niggly injuries and dips in form.

The unfortunate demise of José Antonio Reyes

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He was signed for a club-record fee which amounted to £17 million. He was the man who scored against Chelsea in the UEFA Champions League quarterfinal, and his goals in the penultimate two games of the 2004/05 season helped keep Arsenal's unbeaten run in the Premier League going. Known in his homeland as a [.

VIDEOS: Wenger & Nasri joke about on French TV

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Check out these two videos of Arsenal boss Arsène Wenger and midfield maestro Samir Nasri on the French equivalent of 'Soccer AM' — Téléfoot. In the first parody clip, Gunners' tactician Wenger presents the future of the Arsenal dressing room. It's quite a funny watch, even if it is in French!

5 Defensive Midfield options for Arsenal + Videos

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Every summer Arsenal are linked with a whole host of unknown, young and unproven players. However, after the recent acquisition of Ajax skipper Thomas Vermaelen, it seems that Arsene Wenger may be going for the more 'experienced'-type players. Gooner Talk have put together a list of five Defensive Midfielders who have been linked with Arsenal, [.

VIDEO: Cesc wins penalty as Spain beat SA

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Kolo Toure NOT pictured in Manchester

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Arsenal defender Kolo Toure won't be leaving the club this summer, and despite reports on other websites, he hasn't been pictured in Manchester either. After the confirmation of Thomas Vermaelen's signing yesterday evening, a certain blog posted an article with images of Toure reportedly in his car travelling through 'Manchester streets'.

First Austrian friendly announced

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Arsenal will continue their pre-season excursions to Austria with the news that the Gunners' will play a Viennese amateur team next month. SC Columbia have announced a friendly against Arsene Wenger's side which has been scheduled for the 21st July. The game at the Wiener Stadtliga is already being dubbed the biggest in the Floridsdorf-based [.

Thomas Vermaelen is a Gooner!

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Arsenal have confirmed the signing of Thomas Vermaelen from Dutch giants Ajax for an undisclosed fee. The 23-year-old has constantly been linked with Arsene Wenger's side during the last fortnight and the centre half's admitted that it was the Frenchman who made al the diffrence in his move.

VIDEO: Walcott plays his part in late Under-21’s win

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Arshavin rewarded for Orphanage efforts

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Image credited to The Daily Mail Arsenal and Russia playmaker Andrey Arshavin received the mark of Saint Tatyana from the Russian Orthodox Church yesterday. The 28-year-old earned the award due to his work with the orphans of Russia, he's the first football player in his country to receive the honour.

Melo has already committed to La Viola

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Gooner Talk posted a video of him scoring for Brazil earlier on, but it looks like Felipe Melo will stay at Fiorentina despite Arsenal's apparent interest. Almost a fortnight ago, the 25-year-old's agent remained adamant that La Viola was the place for him and admitted that he's tied to Fiorentina until 2012.

VIDEO: Felipe Melo scores for Brazil

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Arsenal target Felipe Melo scored from a free kick to send Brazil on their way to victory against their USA counterparts in the Confederations Cup. The combative Brazilian midfielder is reportedly on Arsene Wenger's transfer shortlist, with several tabloid newspapers putting a £15 million price tag on the Fiorentina star.

Swedish striker linked with Gunners

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Sweden's Under-21 star Marcus Berg has received interest from all of the England's top four Premier League clubs, according to the Swedish media. The 22-year-old is hot property after he bagged a hat-trick during the Swede's 5-1 annihilation of Belarus earlier in the week, his agent revealed that Spain is the 'ideal' destination for [.

Apologies to readers

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I would just like to take this opportunity to apologise for Monday's fixture list blunder. After the the proposed 'fixtures' were released on Sky Sports News, I immediately posted an article stating those games, unfortunately they were actually 'tester games' and completely wrong. I even received an e-mail from NetResult, on behalf of the Premier [.

VIDEO: Arsene Wenger on footballing style, Barca & more

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Check out these videos of Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger giving an interview to Australian broadcaster SBS whilst in Malaysia this week. The French tactician shares his views on the footballing philosophy which he has brought to England, the rise of Barcelona as well as the Australian national football team.

Sagna ‘proud’ to wear the shirt, but what about Eboue & co?

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The ever-professional that is Bacary Sagna released a statement on Arsenal.com earlier saying that he's 100 percent committed to the Gunners' cause. After rumours linking Sagna with a move to Real Madrid in the French press, he immediately refuted them by issuing the following: "This is a great Club and I'm proud to wear the [.

Vermaelen transfer a question of ‘when not whether’

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Thomas Vermaelen's representatives have revealed that the Ajax skipper will be joining Arsenal this summer, despite the deal dragging on. Highly-rated centre back Vermaelen is close to completing his move to the Emirates, but because he's on holiday, the transfer has been held up by almost a week.

First Arsenal fixtures LEAKED!

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Gooner Talk, with thanks to Sky Sports, can reveal Arsenal's first 6 Premier League games of the 2009/10 season next August. After completing their pre-season campaign, the Gunners' start off with a tough trip to West Ham at Upton Park. Following that game, there are some tricky home ties against newly-promoted Burnley and FA Cup [.

EXCLUSIVE: First Arsenal fixtures LEAKED!

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Gooner Talk can reveal Arsenal's first 6 Premier League games of the 2009/10 season next August. After completing their pre-season campaign, the Gunners' start off with a tough trip to West Ham at Upton Park. More to come.

VIDEO: Cesc scores one & makes another as Spain thrash NZ

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BREAKING NEWS: Sakho staying at PSG

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Arsenal target Mamadou Sakho admits that there was 'never any question' that he'd stay at PSG this summer. The 19-year-old said: "I want to formally refute the statements that have been published in the press. There was never any question that I leave the PSG. No transfer is under study.

Have we really missed out on Matuidi?

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Saint Etienne midfielder Blaise Matuidi will sign for Everton this summer, according to French radio station RMC. 22-year-old Matuidi is extremely highly-rated in his homeland and it's no secret that Arsenal's French scout Gilles Grimandi has already watched several Les Verts matches this season.

Wenger: “Science makes the game beautiful”

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Arsène Wenger has been present in Malaysia this week helping improve the image of  oil firm Castrol. The company recruited Wenger to be the face of the Castrol Index a player-rating that involves 18 cameras a game, a team of statisticians and a complex mathematical formula to come up with a player's true value.

More bad news for Manchester United!

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Referee Rob Styles is expected to retire from refereeing Premier League football today. He calls time on a 22-year career in which there have been many ups, downs and complete question marks. Renowned for his lapses in high profile games, Styles will recently be remembered for handing Cristiano Ronaldo a penalty against Bolton last season, [.

Follow Gooner Talk on Twitter!

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A quick reminder to all readers: If you're a keen Twitterer or an avid Gooner Talk reader than don't forget to follow us @GoonerTalk! We'll be tweeting throughout the summer posting all the news that hits our ears. Our Twitter followers will even gain access to previews of our articles before they're even published!

Sakho could be Wenger’s ‘other centre half’

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PSG defender Mamadou Sakho could be on his way to the Emirates Stadium after his agent revealed that Arsene Wenger have put in an offer for the France Under-21 starlet. Last month, Gooner Talk published reports stating Arsenal's interest in 19-year-old Sakho. We then went on to tell you how Gunners' defender Mikael Silvestre [.

Will Ronaldo’s departure improve Arsenal

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Simple question really. The Portugese winger will finally get his wish and complete an £80 million move to Real Madrid in the coming days. Surely this transfer will not only weaken United, but also strengthen the likes of Liverpool and Chelsea (and us) in the summer? Give your views below + more reaction soon

Thumbs up to Arsenal Bulgaria! (Video)

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Here's a clip of Spurs striker Robbie Keane being fooled by some dedicated Bulgarian Gooners! Republic of Ireland international Keane was asked to sign an autograph after Bulgaria's match with Ireland at Sofia Airport. Little did Keane know, he was actually signing a photo of him missing a penalty from the Arsenal v Spurs match [.

Video: Watch Walcott set-up England’s second

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Theo Walcott's England side lead Andorra by 3 goals to nil in the first half at Wembley Stadium. The 20-year-old whizkid has done well throughout the 45 minutes, setting up Frank Lampard's goal as you can see below. Check back at full time for more match highlights.

Arsène Wenger champions Council of Europe anti-discrimination campaign

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Football manager Arsène Wenger has given his backing to the Council of Europe's 47-country campaign against racism and discrimination. Wenger said: "I support the Council of Europe in its campaign against discrimination. I believe everybody who loves football should just enjoy how great the players are and nothing else.

Was Ferguson’s rejection a blessing in disguise?

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Scotland legend Jim Leighton told reporters yesterday that Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson was close to becoming Arsenal boss in 1986. "We were in Santa Fe before we actually went into Mexico and Sir Alex was offered the Arsenal job, and George Graham would have been his assistant," said Leighton.

Video: Arsenal v Tottenham - Best Ever Goals

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How cheeky are Arsenal’s sponsors?!

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Arsenal's sponsors Emirates have admitted that they weren't expecting the Gunners' to win any trophies last season. "We didn't expect them to win the Champions League or the Premiership," Tim Clarke told Reuters on Tuesday. "So long as they finish in the top half." Nice to know we have the backing of our own [.

Gibbs scores twice in Under-21’s rout

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Kieran Gibbs bagged a brace as England Under-21's romped to a 7-0 win over Azerbaijan at Stadium MK. Chelsea youngster Michael Mancienne put England ahead after just 48 seconds, turning home the rebound after a header from James Tomkins, making his Under-21 debut, hit the post. The lead was doubled on 26 minutes, courtesy of [.

Arsenal replaced by Sunderland in Amsterdam Tournament

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There won't be any Gooners travelling to Amsterdam this summer (at least not for footballing reasons anyhow!), after Ajax announced that Arsenal aren't participating in this year's LG Amsterdam Tournament 2009. Instead, Arsene Wenger's side are replaced by fellow Premier League club Sunderland.

Gooner Talk has a new look!

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If you haven't noticed already, Gooner Talk has undertaken a brand-new face-lift! The modernised, user-friendly theme was designed exclusively for Gooner Talk by Anthony over at Fantasy Creative. After consulting with some of our readers, we opted to stick with the 'blogger-look' and kept several features which were used on the old theme.

Vermaelen: “Moving to Arsenal is the right path for me”

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Vermaelen said: "Moving to Arsenal is the right path for me. It is a great sporting challenge and I'll also be financially better off. I think everything will be okay. There will be more talks in the coming days."

PICTURE: Cesc’s new haircut!

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Cesc Fabregas is following in the footsteps of William Gallas and Djibril Cisse after growing a Mohawk! The Arsenal skipper, currently preparing for Spain's World Cup Quailfying campaign, had an up and down season mainly due to injuries along with dips in form. After his international excursions, Cesc will have a short holiday before returning [.

Would you like to see Dzeko at Arsenal?

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Edin Dzeko's agent revealed yesterday that he has received several offers for the Bosnian hotshot - with one of them coming from Arsenal. Irfan Redžepagi? said. "It is not realistic for Dzeko who is a leading player in Germany and due to perform in the Champions League to opt for an average club like Manchester [.

VIDEO: Premier League 08/09

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Bendtner: I prefer Scandanavian girls to English

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Danish hitman Nicklas Bendtner gave his controversial opinion on women ahead of the Danes World Cup Qualifier with Sweden later this evening. The 21-year-old, who is rather popular with the female Gooner population, admitted that English girls don't even come close to that of Scandinavian beauties!

Vermaelen’s agent negotiating move

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Ajax skipper Thomas Vermaelen should be an Arsenal player soon after sources in his home country revealed that the Dutch giants have given permission for the 23-year-old's agent to begin negotiations with the Gunners'. Vermaelen is currently on a plane to Mauritius, while his agent Sören Lerby forges out a £10 million move to [.

Global Futbol Initiative (GFI)

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Global Futbol Initiative is a non-profit charitable organization that aims to provide futbol gear to underprivileged communities throughout the world. They believe futbol is the heartbeat of the world and should be fully accessible to everyone. The positive and global message of futbol has the ability to impact change, promote peace, and improve the quality [.

International Friendly: France 1-0 Turkey

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France striker Karim Benzema scored a penalty to give Raymond Domenech's men an assured 1-0 win over Turkey. It wasn't Benzema's pen that got everyone talking though, Turkey fans through objects onto the pitch - including flares - which forced the game to be stopped for a brief moment.

Sagna handed started against Turks

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France defender Bacary Sagna will start for Les Bleus' tomorrow evening when they take on Turkey in an international friendly at Lyon's Stade de Gerland. The 25-year-old Arsenal star has been picked in an experienced defence along with former Newcastle reject Jean-Alain Boumsong. Lloris Sagna - Boumsong - Mexes - Abidal Diarra - Toulalan Anelka - Gourcuff - [.

Happy Birthday to Emmanuel Eboue!

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Emmanuel Eboue celebrates his 26th Birthday today! The versatile Ivorian signed for Arsenal in 2005 from Belgium minnows Beveren. At present, the winger has made 94 appearances bagging 3 goals along the way. Despite being heavily criticised throughout last season, Eboue gradually became more and more consistent - eventually winning over most Arsenal fans.

Video: Gunners’ new-boy Vermaelen

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According to reliable reports, Thomas Vermaelen will be confirmed as an Arsenal player in the coming days. Check out this video compilation of the 23-year-old during last season.

Reports: Vermaelen is an Arsenal player

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Thomas Vermaelen is Arsenal's new centre back signing according to British media reports today. Highly-rated Ajax defender Vermaelen has been one name strongly linked with the Gunners recently. News firm Sport.co.uk believe that a deal will be 'confirmed' in the coming days. More to come on this story.

Bendtner blasts Zlatan’s criticism

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Arsenal striker Nicklas Bendtner has hit back at comments from Zlatan Ibrahimovic criticising the Gunners' transfer and youth policies. Swedish frontman Zlatan, who almost signed for Arsenal before moving to Ajax in 2001, made claims in a Danish newspaper that Arsene Wenger refuses to buy the 'best players' and crudely stated how he feels [.

5 reasons why Adebayor WON’T leave this summer

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Whether you like him or not, it's seems more and more likely that Emmanuel Adebayor WON'T be leaving the Emirates Stadium this summer. Despite reiterating his commitment days ago, unreliable blogs and newspapers continue to link the Togo frontman with some of Europe's footballing elite. Gooner Talk have listed 5 reasons why Ade won't be [.

Wenger to decide on Matuidi signing

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Arsene Wenger will make a decision in the coming weeks on whether or not he'll be making a bid for Saint-Etienne midfielder Blaise Matuidi this summer. The Arsenal boss rates 22-year-old Matuidi very highly along with his French-based scout, Gilles Grimandi. Former Gunner Grimandi has been present at dozens of Les Verts matches this season, [.

Cesc set for summer tournament

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Arsenal skipper Cesc Fabregas looks likely to miss the beginning of pre-season after the Spaniard was selected to take part in the Confederations Cup this June. The news will anger Gunners' boss Arsene Wenger, who is already facing a probable fatigued Theo Walcott when the Englishman returns from International duty with both England seniors [.