The Belgian Outcast Perfect for Arsenal’s European Ambitions

While the new dawn at Arsenal is taking some time to rise, there’s certainly a feeling that the post-Wenger era has gotten off to a decent start, if not an explosive one.

The great Frenchman left a reasonably strong squad behind, boosted by the signings of Lacazette and Aubameyang prior to his departure, but there’s still some way to go before they’re back on the world football scene.

Their ultimate aim is to be battling against the likes of rivals Spurs, who are listed in the latest odds to win the Champions League at 22/1, but the Gunners will need a strong finish to this season just to feature among Europe’s best sides next time out.

File:Yannick Ferreira Carrasco (cropped).jpg
Yannick Carrasco – By Светлана Бекетова  -https://www.soccer.ru/galery/1056314/photo/734999, CC BY-SA 3.0,

A Europa League win would bring them qualification, as would a top-four finish in the Premier League. They’re as far as six points behind Chelsea, who are in 4th, so Arsenal may be relying on winning Europe’s second competition to qualify for its showcase event.

There’s little doubt they need to bring in a new face or two; the squad is evolving, but they must continue to do so if they’re going to catch up to the top four in the Premier League. They’ve always had sides built on flair, skill and pace, and if they’re astute, they might just be able to capture a star who has fallen rather spectacularly from grace.

India, USA, and China are all countries that lure premier sportsmen over to their competitions with money rather than glory. The Chinese Premier League has attracted a host of top players, none of whom have found the experience particularly helpful for their footballing ambitions. One such player that is prime Arsenal material is 25-year old Belgium international Yannick Carrasco.

He’s being linked with a move to Arsenal, and, on the face of it, it seems like a really good move all round. He’s currently plying his trade with Dalian Yifang, an odd move for a player who finished as a runner up in a Champions League final, as well as earning a third-place finish with Belgium in the 2018 World Cup.

Carrasco is a flying winger who broke through with Monaco in the French League, helping them win Ligue 2 in 2013 before moving on to Spain to play for Atletico Madrid. Following their Champions League exploits and his performances for his country, he seemed primed to make another big move, maybe to one of Europe’s top clubs.

File:Emirates Stadium east side at dusk.jpg
Emirates Stadium –  By Ed g2s – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0,

Instead, he chose to head out to China and has all but slipped off the footballing radar. The competition receives little coverage in Europe, and, aside from Nicolás Gaitán, his teammates are no world stars either.

It’s a crying shame that a player in his prime has chosen such a move, but the recent reports do suggest he might be rethinking his career choices. If he is, Arsenal should be right at the front of the queue. He’s just what they need, a provider for the illustrious strikers they have at the Emirates and the type of player who has thrived there in the past.

There’s a long way to go before Arsenal are once again a dominant force in the English game, but mixing those big money buys with shrewd captures such as Carrasco is certainly the way forward with Arsenal’s self-sustaining transfer policy….

James

Updated: January 15, 2019 — 2:24 pm

61 Comments

  1. Actually James, I would prefer James…….. Rodriguez that is.

  2. Carrasco’s performance as a left wingback in World Cup was not excellent, hence I really doubt he could torment EPL’s defenders as a winger. Had he excelled as winger in Spain, Atletico Madrid would have kept him

    Eden Hazard’s forms were excellent in World Cup and I want Arsenal to get a wide attacker that doesn’t hesitate to move like that. Prefer someone younger, quicker, braver and taller like Ismaila Sarr

  3. Actually James and Declan I’ll prefer neither Carrasco or James Rodriguez, I’m sick and tired of the fact we are always going after other clubs rejects.. where has that gotten us?? But I guess we are used to it and excited by it because we know our club won’t spend the right money fr the right players….with the whole Sven saga, the state of the club and the management, the club seems to be getting more fücked up as time passes

    1. Yes Eddie, the current rumours about management bust ups and the Sven saga are very worrying but regarding “other clubs rejects”, you could look at it that any club that decides to let a player leave for another club albeit for a huge fee or no fee is rejecting that player?
      Bring devil’s advocate of course but needs must eh?

    2. Sorry I’ve completely missed this, what Sven bust up? He might be leaving?

      1. It’s on sky sports but arsenal are refusing to comment that’s all it said .might just be rumours but sky are usually pretty good.
        It’s also in the online tabloids but they are just speculating saying scouts are not happy with his players he picks

        1. Ok cheers, I’ll check it out.

          1. Mislintat is set to leave….

            roles clashes with raul

          2. What is going on? It looked like Gazidis FINALLY had the majority of control with Wenger gone, then he goes, now possibly Sven! Kroenke has really let Arsenal go down the pan.

          3. According to what I’ve read Sven isn’t satisfied with how the club handles his targets..It’s been said that Emery and Raul refuses most of his targets and prefer to go for Emery’s choice which he (Sven) doesn’t like because he wants to be in control of that since he was hired for that..Also that Sven is against bringing Denis Suarez and Ever Banega, both Emery’s choice, hence they both don’t agree on players we should bring in.. It even went as far as saying Sokratis wasn’t Sven’s choice last season even though he had is his hands all over it, that Abdou Diallo was the first player Sven pointed out to be brought in but the club refused and pointed out Sokratis and even saw Litchsteiner as a chance too sweet to let go.. Sven hasn’t been happy with the transfer dealings and stuffs going on and him and Emery disagrees a lot on players to be brought in….
            well, so many sites are saying stuffs and we don’t know the truth but if this is true then this is one big fücked up club, hell bent on leading us fans down to highway to the depression club..hëll some of us are already in that club, I’ll blame Gazidis for bringing in Sven for his project and then bailing on us

          4. Said Sven was very keen on bringing in Abdou Diallo but the club didn’t want him so he had to go for Sokratis… and he’s still having issues with the club rejecting his targets….

            It’s more annoying that without getting up to eight hours, Bayern Munich are ready to pick him up as their scout..
            I mean what manner of fückery is that?
            Arsenal Fc seems to be one club that’s always going down because it’s self destructive, our decisions contact negotiations, transfers, everything, the club always look like it’s responsible for its own destruction…

            Bayern Munich already keen to give him the job and we think he’s a guy we should let go?? Bayern is a club who hardly spends up to 50million pounds on players, Sven would be their top target definitely, and Raul & Co are busy having bust up with Sven??
            call it rumours, but there’s no smoke without fire…
            guys I’m tired of the way things are, I don’t know I love this club so much to read and see these stuffs we are going through is so so depressing.
            I might give myself some break from it

          5. I have to agree Eddie, it is depressing right now….

          6. No, Emery is a head coach he should be able to recommend who is coming in if Sven is against Banega and Suarez coming in yes he needs to go and Edu will be good for brazilian players recruitment. and guys remember we call that chemistry sven and unai no gonna work.

          7. “Sven is against Banega and Suarez coming in yes he needs to go”

            HAHAHA , He needs to go !!!!!! lol sven is the only good thing about the club if he goes , Arsenal is finished.

          8. Banega is the definition of average.

            If Sokratis was choice of Emery instead of Diallo, then Emery needs the sack.

            I actually trust Mislintat more in the transfers than Emery.

            Diallo >>>>> Sokratis

    3. Seemed to work pretty well for Salah @ Pool
      and KDB @ Oil City, both considered to be
      Chelsea flops.

      IMO Arsenal dont have the luxury right now to turn
      away very good players like James and
      Carrasco if they have genuine interest in
      joining club.

      A moot point regardless, AFC dont have the cheddar to finance either move.

      Again SMMFH…?

  4. Thorgan Hazard is the winger we should be looking at.

    Top 10 in key passes, can dribble, score and assist.

    Very worrying news that Mislintat would be leaving.

  5. Just to change the subject with some good news, yes I’m a sad b’stard, but poor old spurs, Son gone for 1 month and Kane out for 2 months.

    1. Gutted for them…. not! ?

      1. nothing compared to what WE’RE losing (at AFC…) Spuds without Kane & Son are still a threat, one we’re not prepared for. Guess what it is

        1. no they are not, they are left with erickson and delli alli and inconsistent moura who is ok…no creativity there they should drop points and we might even close the gap if we get our act together….great for us in a week filled with terrible news, the scout situation is just mind boggling!

          1. Moura’s injured too

          2. nice good times 🙂

          3. Yes Sue, Moura is out injured and now the BBC are running a big story about the Sven saga. It’s looking like he’s off.

          4. What else can go wrong GB?

          5. an injury to hazard and de gea might be the luck we just need to get the luckiest top 4…but i’m not optimistic will support to the very end, but the momentum was shifting after that great win at home, and without injection which was needed at the 1st of january not now, and not like this, with all the drama surrounding the club yet again!!…we just keep shooting ourselves in the foot, and that’s what’s heartbreaking to me, we could see it coming as fans.

            Seriously sad what we do to ourselves, supporting this team makes me feel like fifty shades of Arsenal!!

          6. It really is desperate when you have to rely on other teams slipping up or their best players getting injured!

          7. desperate times sue…but we are Arsenal we are good at riding our luck 🙂

          8. Well, what about this then Sue and Sal?
            Following the legend Wrighty having a go at UE for his treatment of Ozil., we know have our ex player Alliedere coming out and roasting him as well.
            THEN, Torreria, while explaining his life at the club mentions just one player….yes you’ve guessed it right.
            Ozil and how he is benefitting from the experience of playing with the man.
            Strange how professionals appreciate exactly what this man can offer, while others see him as lazy, inconsistent and even useless!!!
            Let’s hope that UE and some of the small minority of fans, THANK GOD JUST A FEW, realise that those in the know do want Ozil in the team for his unquestionable ability, fight, determination and, above all, strength of character.
            As realists Sue, that’s all we can hope for as the unrelenting attacks by the mindless few on our one single world class player grind on and on and on.
            Wrighty you are THE LEGEND and YOU SPEAK THE TRUTH…. Torreria your getting there buddy!!
            !
            £350,000 a week? What a snip when Sanchez is on £400,000 a week and injured all the time ???

          9. At long last – there are others out there who see his worth! Not just us! I just hope UE comes round to that way of thinking.. really not liking things the way they are right now Ken!
            Hahaha yes what a snip indeed ??

          10. That’s fair ken, i won’t change my mind due to the pundits, it would have made more of an impact with me if it was Neville saying that in all honesty but it’s not and i trust my gut.. i do however listen to everyone with an open mind, try to see where they are coming from, then defend my point if i still feel the same…which i do ken you might have mistaken me for someone that secretly hates the guy, i don’t i think he is a great guy wonderful talent, but what is happening is not good for the team, and i’m with the manager on this and the reasons why i explained as best as i can in several other posts…we can agree to disagree that’s ok as i don’t have 100 pounds riding on it ;)….but i firmly beleive the manager doesn’t want him, there is a stand off, and the manager should be backed not the player in my humble opinion mate!!

            ps; i could be wrong man, i was wrong about harry kane turning into a WC player, but i don’t think it’s the case here that’s my gut talking… again will be happy to be proven wrong so all good mate 🙂

          11. This is the silliest post you have ever written Ken. It makes our Wenger saga look no worse than a vicars tea party by comparison. If you truly believe ” Ozil has fight , determination, and above all, strength of character” then you and I inhabit different planets. There can be no meeting of our two minds on that fantasy paragraph! Beyond mere nonsense! Way beyond!

          12. Jon, just reading between the lines of comments from two former players, one a legend, and our latest star who you, amongst nearly all on here, sees as the DM we’ve been waiting for.
            If they can see what he really is, then that is good enough for me.
            Obviously you disagree with Wrighty and co and that’s your perogative.
            I wonder how you would have coped with the hateful messages / actions he has had to deal with in the last year?
            That’s why I admire the man Jon, did you know some have accused him of being mentally weak without any proof whatsoever?
            That’s more than mere nonsense, that’s character assassination and way beyond sensible thinking.

  6. Carrasco won’t be joining Arsenal they’re flat broke even Cardiff have more to spend it seems they’re gonna splash 15-18 mil bringing in emiliano Sala from Nantes we just can’t compete with the likes of Cardiff anymore ?

    1. Omg this is an absolute nightmare…

      1. What is Sue ?

        1. Everything to do with our beloved club! On top of everything else that is going on can you imagine what it’ll be like IF we lose on Saturday & then are knocked out of the FA cup?? I’ll want to become a recluse ??

          1. We probably will be knocked out of the fa cup Sue Man u are better than us plus they’re really playing for Solskjaer ? it’s a nightmare alright Sue because I don’t think we’ll beat Chelsea either I hate being negative but I have to be realistic Man city on the horizon too ?

          2. It’s hard to be positive right now John… as much as I hate to say that… oh great of all the places to go – the Etihad….. could we pull off a major shock?? Nah!!!! ?

          3. Sue I honestly think we will be slaughtered at the Etihad 5 or 6 we are so out of our depth in these type of away games it’s depressing! Of course we can beat utd and Chelsea at home if we bring the old A game but you just don’t know what Arsenal team that’s gonna show up ? on the plus side it won’t be long to February ?

          4. At this rate, I’ll be glad when May is here & the season will be over…. never thought I’d say that ?

          5. My birthday is in may good old Taurus ? well we could have a good run in the Europa Sue if the draw is kind to us ? we’re actually good defensively in that ?

          6. The bull hey?!
            We could do, I hope so… good defensively? What on earth is that? ??

          7. Yes I even have the Taurus symbol tattooed on my wrist got that on my 22nd birthday Jesus it’s old now ? haha I know Sue it’s not something we’re familiar with is it ? I hear the young Greek defender is back though I’d play him over Mustafi ?

          8. ??
            I’d love to see him with Sokratis… tag team wrestling ??

          9. Be like WWF legion of Doom back in the day lol ?

          10. Sue, you are overreacting, calm down.
            The FA cup isn’t worth winning, remember?
            That’s not the measurement of a top club remember?
            Don’t understand all this fuss about top four and CL either, what’s the point of that?
            Forget all about the above and our season will be a success.

            No, the only two trophies that mean ANYTHING are the Premier League and the CL and we’ll do it with kronkie transfer budget that will enable us to buy world class players on transfers matched by Cardiff and wages matched by Huddersfield.

            As long as UE doesn’t become power crazy and overrides everyone else we’ll do It next season.
            Of course he has to get every transfer correct and have no injuries that are his fault and then we’ll do it… maybe!!

          11. ? nice one Ken…. you do make me laugh

          12. ken and Sue, please remind me again how Arsenal left Highbury and spent all that money developing the Emirates, so we could compete for the EPL title and the Champions League!
            One of the worst feelings in the world and a thing that destroys the strongest relationships is to be continuously lied to.

  7. Not sure what to think about Sven rumors if they’re true. Damn I hope not. Hopefully Emery’s not nosing in on Sven’s job, b/c I’d definitely choose Sven’s picks over Emery.

    WTF is the club doing? Best scout on planet, and Emery thinks he’s better identifying talent?

    Rather Emery do HIS JOB and coach players and sort out defensive mess he’s done little about in 6 months. Falling down table and Emery worried about players we can’t afford anyway.

    Sheesh, though Raul CEO, Sven talent evaluator, and Emery manager/coach. What happened? I just am bit concerned about Emery looking like going down that PSG road. Rather have Sven to be honest.

    1. The club is in a big bad mess! I heard we were offered Carrasco but can’t afford him it’s an absolute embarrassment! I don’t think Emery was first choice I think he was chosen because he’s another yes man.. I think he’s a decent coach but we could do better imo

      1. not surprise we cant afford him….we have been running on budget for years….way before Kroneke….

        Carrasco get paid heaps in China or way over paid in China

        he would not want any less if he was to move…….

        1. John Wick, who of the well credentialed coaches/managers available at the time in football, would have come to Arsenal given the state of the squad, the available transfer budget and Kroenke’s self funding model?
          If Unai Emery follows Sven Mislintat out the door due to not being able to compete in mission impossible, who is Arsenal likely to attract to take his place?

  8. any club having UE as the manager is just not aserious one. the man is avirous and no wonder Sven is leaving. am saying it here again UE will never take us anywhere. he is Everton material manager. challenge me on this. can he attract big names to Arsenal.? from an attacking team to playing the Mourinho way, that is what he is doing to this club.the flair, the pace and the beautiful game all gone. he only needed to recruit acentral defender, aball carrying midfielder and aholding midilder and use our academy boys in order to address our main issues.people focus too much on the SK, but our players are not as bad as some fans want us to believe. Give them to Sir Alex and he will work magic with them. sack the manager! he will only antognize our players.

    1. amo, if you say this often enough about a man respected by his peers, you might actually believe it.
      Sir Alex Ferguson would clear most of these Arsenal players out by the end of the season. This man who threw a boot at David Beckham, would burn through a few hair dryers with this lot.

  9. So City are on 99 goals in all comps…. we’re on 66… just saw that Shrewsbury knocked Stoke out of the FA cup ? brilliant!!

  10. If Sven goes I’m done with this club. He was the only shining light to bring us back to the top by bringing in cheap talent that became world class.

    I’ve never seen a big club being run so poorly, it’s actually a disgrace

    1. See ya then, or not as the case maybe.
      Thanks for your contribution.

  11. Carrasco is also earning 180K a week at the moment so I am very sure we won’t match his wag demands…

  12. Kiaran, what a greedy B Carrasco is; how many beautiful “WAGS” did he demand to come to Arsenal? (LOL??)

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