Arsenal News Roundup, February 20: At Least The U-18s Are Good

I don't think this bodes very well.

After the craptastic week we had, there are lots of negatives going around about Arsenal. So, we'll start off with the positive stuff!

The U-18s beat Fulham 3-0 on the weekend, moving 5 points clear in the Premier Academy League Group A. Josh Rees scored in the 78th minute after a fantastic Hector Bellerin cross. The attacking fullback has been very impressive since joining in the summer from Barcelona, and his Twitter account is awesome too.

Arsenal's fixture against Everton for Saturday, March 17th has been postponed because of Everton's participation in the FA Cup. The game has yet to be rescheduled, but it should be a midweek contest.

Stan Kroenke is flying into London for top level CRISIS TALKS. Actually, it's for the monthly board meeting, which coincides with the release of Arsenal's 6 month accounts, which should feature the money gained (and spent) in the last transfer window. The profit margin excluding that will be interesting; if it's above £10m (half the money Wenger says we need to make every season) I shall be very annoyed about the lack of investment last January.

Continuing on the boardroom theme, A Cultured Left Foot discusses rumours about our summer "warchest".

Meanwhile, Arsene Wenger has said finishing in the top 4 is like a trophy. I do get his meaning, and I agree with Gunnerblog that it's the most important thing this season, but the wording is somewhat annoying. Finishing 4th place is not a trophy; it's a qualification for next year's Champions League. That's not a trophy; we don't get a medal for it.

Michael Cox (aka Zonal Marking) wonders what Arsenal are exactly good at. I think it's a good point, but I also think that there are some points to make: After Francis Coquelin went off, Thomas Vermaelen didn't support the midfield as well, Arsenal were extremely tired, and the two centre backs are both not very good with the ball. Arsenal do need to raise their tempo, and pressing has hurt Arsenal this season, but usually Arteta gets on the ball and the passing and tempo gets better. The terrible pitch was obviously a problem.

In more good news, Mike Dean, who hasn't refereed an Arsenal victory in the Premier League since November 30th, 2008 (2-1 v Chelsea), has been named the referee for Sunday. Phil Dowd is the 4th official. Joy.

From the Twitterverse, some transfer news: Jamie Dalton tweets that Kyle Bartley is on his way back from Rangers, because of cuts to their wages after administration. With Squillaci injured Saturday and Mertesacker out for the year, though, it wouldn't surprise me if he stayed for the rest of the year instead of going on emergency loan to the Championship.

Finally, there are some former players who are saying some very silly things and a former manager who is also saying silly things and I'm not going to link to them because they are a giant waste of time.

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