2. arsenal STAR PLAYER Transfers out Andray Arshavin 28 Striker/Mid fielder William Gallas Fran Merida Ath Madrid ARSENAL INFO Year Formed: 1886 as Dial Square FC Nickname: The Gunners Stadium: Emirates Stadium Mikeal Silvestre Philip Senderos ARSENAL LAST SEASON Fulham League Position : 3rd F A Cup : Semi Final League Cup : SQUAD Uefa Champions League: Semi Final 1 M. Almunia G TROPHY CABINET • 23 A. Arshavin F LEAGUE CHAMPIONS: 1930/31, 1932/33, 1933/34 • 52 N. Bendtner F 1934/35, 1937/38, 1947/48, 1952/53, 1970/71, • 22 G. Clichy D 1988/89, 1990/91, 1997/98, 2001/02, 2003/04. • 35 F. Coquelin M(loaned to FC Lorient) FA CUP : 1930, 1936, 1950, 1971, 1979, 1993, 1998, • 15 Denilson M 2002, 2003, 2005. • 2 V. Diaby M LEAGUE CUP : 1987, 1993. • 20 J. Djourou D EUROPEAN CUP WINNERS’ CUP :1993/94 • 27 E. Eboue M FAIRS CUP : 1969/70 • 21 L. Fabianski G • 4 F. Fabregas M Transfers in • 40 K. Gibbs M • 42 H. Lansbury M stars • 24 V. Mannone G • 8 S. Nasri M • 16 A. Ramsey M • 7 T. Rosicky M • 3 B. Sagna D • 6 L. kosielny • F 17 A. Song D • 53 W. Szczesny GMaruane Chamakh- Bordeux • 30 A. Traore D • 10 R. Van Persie F • 11Vela F 5 • 5 T. Vermaelen D • 14 T. Walcott F • 19 J. Wilshere M • 32 S Campbell DLaurent Kosielny - Lorient
3. EDUARDO 1) Was the season a success or failure?personal message from Eduardo A success overall - but the way it ended made it seem like a failure.Following the confirmation of his transfer to Shakhtar Donetsk, Arsenal exceeded expectations, though, so 7/10.Eduardohas spoken to Arsenal.com and asked if the following 2) How did the manager do?message could be passed on: Arsene Wenger took Arsenal to the Champions League quarter- "Before I start a new chapter in my career with Shakhtar final and third place in the Premier League and but fell short due toDonetsk, I just wanted to send a message to all my friends at a lack of strength in depth and new signings. He was also guilty ofArsenal. not taking the domestic cup competitions seriously enough. 7/10 "The past few days have been very emotional for me. Although I 3) Player of the season: Cesc Fabregasam excited about the challenge ahead with my new club The skipper was outstanding and carried the team on his shouldersShakhtar Donetsk, I am so sad to be leaving my home for the past in some games. I struggle to think of one player who had a biggerthree years - Arsenal Football Club. impact on a team - even Wayne Rooney got more help from his "Arsenal is a very special football club and I will miss so many team-mates.people - my team mates, all the staff and of course, the 4) Villain of the season: Manuel Almuniawonderful Arsenal supporters. In truth it could have been of Arsenals keepers. Theyre just not "I would just like to thank everyone for your support during my good enough, and all fell short of previous standards. Arsenal nowtime at Arsenal. When I first came to England, I could not speak know they must buy a top number one in the summer.the language and knew nobody, but as soon as I arrived I was 5) Best signing: Thomas Vermaelenmade to feel at home and part of this big family. Also, I want to When it comes to value, Vermaelen was great business atsay thank you to the Arsenal supporters - you have been £10million. Hes strong, determined and, despite being Belgian, is afantastic to me and always sung my name and I will never forget real English-style centre-half whose game is perfect for the Premierthis. League. "I had some very difficult times with my injury, but Arsenal was 6) Worst signing: N/Aalways there for me - the medical staff, the management, the Signings? What signings? Thomas Vermaelen and Sol Campbellplayers and the supporters. Thank you everybody. were the only new arrivals of note. "Although I have now left the Club, Arsenal will always be in my 7) Best gameheart. I will always look for the Arsenal results and of course, I The 6-2 victory over Blackburn Rovers in October was Arsenal atwish Arsène Wenger and the great players at the Club well for their best: rampant, great passing, great goals and a brilliant mannext season and the future.“ of the match display by Cesc Fabregas. Arsenal 6-2 Blackburn match report and pictures 8) Worst game The 1-1 draw away at Birmingham. Arsenal conceded a late equaliser after an Almunia mistake, and, more than any other result, it was this draw away from home that dented their title ambitions. Birmingham 1-1 Arsenal match report and pictures 9) Funniest moment of the season Andrey Arshavins appearance on Question of Sport . He spoke perfect English when he could answer the question and suddenly couldnt speak any English at all when he didnt know the answer.Eduardo will always remain in the heart of Arsenal fans not only Rather like those translated interviews...because he is an immensely talented player but also because he 10) Key lessons to be learnedwas denied stardom and being an arsenal legend by the rough Arsene Wenger must strengthen his squad. Arsenal need moretackle of Martin Taylor. quality and more bodies so that players dont pick up injuries after being pushed to the limit. He also needs to go for the FA Cup in earnest next year and, above all, sign a new keeper.
4. Look Back At Arsenal’s ‘Badman’ He also scored my favourite goal ever. Again, at Highbury, i was in the North Bank for a North London derby against Tottenham. Thierry picked up the ball in his own half, ran through about 5 Spurs players and slotted the ball into the bottom corner. That goal was pure Henry. Thierry has since moved on to Barcelona and went on to win the champions league medal his talent deserved, along with several other domestic trophies in Spain. Even though he has lost a couple of yards of pace these days and is nowhere near the player he was while at Arsenal, i am still not looking forward to seeing him play against us. Perhaps the only person on the planet who is looking forward to it less is Thierry himself!• Arsenal Vs Barcelona saw the return of a true Arsenal legend…Thierry Henry. The player voted No.1 in an arsenal.com pole of the greatest ever Arsenal player. Arsenal’s all time record goal-scorer and arguably the greatest player to ever play in the premier league.• Henry played against his former club for the first time when Arsenal faced Barcelona in the champions league. It was to be an emotional return for both Henry and the fans who adored He has always and continues to openly express his love for the club, him for 8 trophy-filled seasons. Thierry Henry is my favourite Arsenal player of all time, by quite some distance. His passion Arsene Wenger and the fans. He described his dismay at the thought for the game, the graceful way he glided over the perfect of facing The Gunner’s in a recent interview; Highbury surface, it was a joy to watch. “It will be weird for me to step on the pitch, even if it’s at the Emirates• After arriving for £10.7 from Juventus as a pacey winger, and not Highbury, with another shirt on.” Arsene Wenger soon converted Henry into a striker. It took When asked if he would celebrate a goal, he added: “Forget about it. him some time to settle into his new role, as he endured a No. I do not want to play against Arsenal, simple as that. mixed first year at the club. I remember going to see him “The bond that I have with the Arsenal fans I will never get anywhere during that first season at Wembley in the champions league else. against Dinamo Keiv. He missed a couple of one-on-one’s Can you imagine if he does score?! I wouldn’t be surprised if he that night and nobody in the crowd would have imagined he apologised! would go on to become Arsenal’s record goal-scorer. I hope he gets an amazing reception when he walks out in a Barcelona• One of my greatest footballing memories was when shirt at the Emirates, I’m sure he will as long as there aren’t too many Manchester United visited Highbury on April 16th 2003. I was ‘fans’ who choose to remember the ridiculously over-hyped hand-ball sat in row E in the North Bank Lower Tier just to the right of the goal. Arsenal were trailing United in the league by 3 incident versus the Irish over all he did for Arsenal Football Club. points, with a game in hand, and this was a true title 6- Whatever happens on Wednesday night, Thierry Henry will always be pointer. an Arsenal legend.• United took the lead during a poor first period but Henry equalized early in the second half, then 10 minutes later Henry burst through and beat Barthez to give Arsenal the lead right in front of the North Bank. Thierry went ballistic and headed straight for the crowd and i was lucky enough to be standing face-to-face with him as he celebrated his goal with the Arsenal fans. It was amazing. My mates don’t believe me, but i swear he was shouting ‘I’m a badman’ right at me whilst beating his chest! I have always called him ‘Badman- Henry’ ever since. The game eventually ended 2-2 and Sol Campbell was controversially sent off for an elbow on Solskjaer, United went on the win the league, but i will always remember the moment i shared with Henry celebrating his goal.••
5. Andrei Arshavin can be Arsenal’s answer to Lionel Messi Former Arsenal striker Thierry Henry scored against old foes Tottenham but he finished on the losing side on his debut for New York Red Bulls. The 32-year-old scored in the first half when he converted a cross from Joel Lindpere past Carlo Cudicini. The Frenchman, who took public transport to the match, played the first half, handing his number 14 shirt to Spurs midfielder Luka Modric at the whistle Henry signed a four-and-a-half year deal with the Bulls after he was released by Barcelona. "The young bloke from that first It would be futile to pretend that Arsenal – or indeed Manchester half, Henry, looks like hes got a good future," joked Tottenham boss United – have a player to compare favourably over the past two Harry Redknapp. seasons with Lionel Messi. Wayne Rooney might have his admirers "He was fantastic. Hes a different class. Hes still a world class player but, taking everything into consideration, Messi has been the best footballer on the planet by a considerable margin. On a one-off occasion, Arsenal have players who are capable of stealing the limelight from Messi, not least Andrei Arshavin, the most similar in size, style and big-game temperament to Barcelona’s little Argentinean genius. Thus far, the evidence of Arshavin is that he tends to deliver in the biggest games. He was man of the match for Zenit in the final of the 2008 Uefa Cup and was also comfortably the best player on the pitch in the quarter-finals of the European Championships when Russia produced what was arguably the performance of the entire tournament by eliminating Holland. Since his arrival at Arsenal, it is little coincidence that his most eye- catching displays were in some of the most important matches or hostile atmospheres. He scored four times against Liverpool at Anfield last year; he also scored earlier this season at Old Trafford and was the pivotal figure• The Invincibles as Arsenal so emphatically over-turned their Champions League first leg deficit against Porto.• Possibly Arsenals finest achievement came during the 2003- 04 season. Arsenal’s team included players such as Henry, Bergkamp, Vieira, Pires and Campbell, they had everything. Pace, power, steel at the back, deadly finishers up front, they were simply unplayable at times. Arsenal managed to As a footballer, he shares with Messi a similar ability to beat players, win the title completing an entire season unbeaten, the first make the killer pass and score special goals. Most importantly, the time this had been achieved since Preston North End in self-confidence to perform on the grandest stage is also evident. 1883. To make the achievement even more sweet, Arsenal No-one is saying that Arshavin is better than Messi but, on a given won the league at White Hart Lane, the home of bitter rivals night, he has the ability to walk taller. Tottenham Hotspur. Arsenals record for the season stood at 26 wins, 12 draws and 0 losses. The unbeaten run ended on 49 games, a national record, in controversial circumstances at Old Trafford, when Manchester United were awarded a suspect penalty. However, the magnitude of Arsenals success was not un-noticed as the Premier League commissioned a special edition gold trophy to commemorate the unbeaten season.
6. was this Arsenal squad really good enough? Aaron Ramsey One of British football’s most exciting young talents and a player who hasBy Jeremy Wilson Football Last updated: February 2nd, 2010 shown further development this season. Can be a major influence at8 Comments Arsenal for the next decade or more, we wish him well on his recoveryArsene Wenger has a fundamental question to answer. Quite from a broken leg.simply, he must decide if this Arsenal squad – and certain Theo Walcottindividual players – truly are good enough to match the vast hope A season of intense frustration following a succession of niggling injuries.and faith he has placed in them. His pace, though, could provide Arsenal with a completely different optionBy being good enough, it is not a question of whether they can as shown against Barcelona.qualify for the Champions League, but if they are actually capable Tomas Rosickyof winning trophies on a regular basis. To do that, sublime patchesof beautiful football must also be backed up by nerve and Still seems to be finding his rhythm after missing all of the 2008-9 seasonconsistency during those defining moments in a season. The through injury and really just needs a consistent run of matches.sequence that will worry all Arsenal fans is a run of seven defeats Samir Nasriand one draw in matches against Manchester United and Chelsea Peripheral against Manchester United and throughout much of the season.since last April. Another who has something to prove following injuries in the early part ofSo who should he place his faith with in the longer term – and are the season.there some players that should be moved on to make way for Eduardosome new signings? Here’s a breakdown of the squad and some of After four goals in seven matches at the start of the season, Eduardo’sthe questions Wenger may face. influence has declined just when he was most needed following Robin vanManuel Almunia Persie’s absence. Clearly has not psychologically recovered from his injuryLacks the presence of the very best goalkeepers in the world and, two seasons ago.judging by all the rotation earlier in the season, it would seem that ? Robin van Persieeven Wenger may have his concerns. Lukasz Fabianski is the big Arsenal’s best striker and also an extremely important dressing-roomlong-term hope. presence. His injury, though, may still prove to have been the definingCesc Fabregas moment in the club’s season.A talismanic presence at times this season and, with AndreiArshavin and Robin van Persie, one of the jewel’s Wenger surely Nicklas Bendtnermust keep this summer. Until injury struck, there were clear signs he was ready to make a majorBacary Sagna impact and he now has the chance to try and fill the considerable void thatAfter an excellent debut season, he has not quite made the has been left by Van Persie.progress that might have been hoped at a time when he should be Andrei Arshavinreaching his peak. Even so, still one of the league’s best right- One of the few creative Arsenal players to have remained fit throughoutbacks. the vast majority of the season. Surprisingly tends to be lazy in matchesGael Clichy that matter eg against Chelsea ,Man utd and Barcelona.Started the season well but has struggled since returning from Emmanuel Ebouelong-term injury and was given a particularly torrid time by Used to be a squad player but has performed well enough this season to beManchester United’s Wayne Rooney and Nani. Clearly needs more pushing Bacary Sagna for the right-back position. Has really become anmatches. important player for arsenal.William GallasEver-present in the Champions and Premier League although thereis concern that with his contract which expires this season.Remains one of Arsenal’s best and most important players.Thomas VermaelenAn eye-catching player because of his quality on the ball butdoubts do persist about some of his defending. That aside, he hasmade a major impact and looks like a potential future captain.Sol CampbellHad a contract until the end of the season and, depending onperformances, could conceivably be offered a further year. there isstill much left in the tank.DenilsonWenger has invested much time and faith in Denilson but, at thelevel Arsenal aspire to play, the suspicion is that he is not quitegood enough.Alex SongA player who has really blossomed this season and grown into theholding midfield role. Vital to Arsenal’s future and one of the firstnames on the team-sheet.Abou DiabyHe was badly missed against Manchester United because of hisphysical presence and unpredictable ability to create somethingfrom nothing. Definitely part of Wenger’s long-term plans.Aaron Ramsey
7. chelsea STAR PLAYER Transfers out Michael Balack(Bayer leverkusen) Juliano Beletti(fluminense) Didier Drogba Joe cole(Liverpool) Miroslav Stoch(Fenerbache) 30 Striker stars CHELSEA INFO Year Formed: 1905 Nickname: The Blues Stadium: Stamford bridge CHELSEA LAST SEASON League Position : Chanpions F A Cup : Champions League Cup : SQUAD Uefa Champions League: Semi Final TROPHY CABINET Petr Čech LEAGUE CHAMPIONS: 1954/55, 2004/05, 2005/06 Branislav Ivanovid FA CUP : 1970, 1997, 2000, 2007, 2009. Ashley Cole LEAGUE CUP : 1968, 1998, 2005. Michael Essien EUROPEAN CUP WINNERS’ CUP :1970/71, 1997/98 Ricardo Carvalho Frank Lampard (vice-captain) Franco Di Santo Transfers in Didier DrogbaYossi Beayoun(Liverpool) John Obi MikelMatej Delac(inter zapresic) Michael BallackTomas Kalas(Sigma olomouc) Florent Malouda Scott Sinclair Paulo Ferreira Deco Salomon Kalou John Terry (captain) Rhys Taylor Alex Nicolas Anelka Henrique Hilário Yossi Beayoun Matej Delac Michael Mancienne Jacob Mellis Jan Šebek Ross Turnbull Yuri Zhirkov Daniel Sturridge José Bosingwa
8. liverpool STAR PLAYER Transfers out Fernando Torres 26 Striker Benayyoun- Chelsea LIVERPOOL INFO Year Formed: 1892 Nickname: The Reds SQUAD Stadium: Anfield LIVERPOOL LAST SEASON Aurellio- League Position : 5th • 5 D. Agger D F A Cup : • 8 A. Aquilani M League Cup : • 12 F. Aurelio D TROPHY CABINET • 19 R. Babel F LEAGUE CHAMPIONS: 1900/01, 1905/06, 1921/22 • J. Brouwer F 1922/23, 1946/47, 1963/64, 1965/66, 1972/73 • 23 J. Carragher D 1975/76, 1976/77, 1978/79, 1979/80, 1981/82, • 1 D. Cavalieri G 1982/83, 1983/84, 1985/86, 1987/88, 1989/90. • A. Cooper M FA CUP : 1965, 1974, 1986, 1989, 1992, 2001, 2006. • 32 S. Darby D LEAGUE CUP : 1981, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1995, 2001, 2003. • 27 P. Degen D EUROPEAN CUP :1976/77, 1977/78, 1980/81, 1983/84, 2004/05. • 39 N. Eccleston F UEFA CUP : 1972/73, 1975/76, 2000/01. • 31 N. El Zhar F • 8 S. Gerrard M • 41 M. Hansen G Transfers in • 36 S. Irwin D • 30 C. Itandje G • 2 G. Johnson D • 34 M. Kelly D • 18 D. Kuyt F • 21 Lucas M • 40 D. Martin G • 20 J. Mascherano M • C. Mavinga DJovanovic (Standar Liege) • E. Mendy D Joe Cole - Chelsea • 24 D. NGog F • 29 K. Nemeth F • V. Palsson M • 28 D. Plessis M • R. Putterill M • 25 J. Reina G • 11 A. Riera M • 37 M. Skrtel D • 26 J. Spearing MJonjo Sheverly- Charlto ath Danny Wilson -Rangers • 9 F. Torres F • L. Weijl M
9. manchester unitedSTAR PLAYER stars Wayne Rooney 24 StrikerMANCHESTER UNITED INFOYear Formed: 1886Nickname: The Red DevilsStadium: Old Trafford Edwin van der SarMANCHESTER UNITED LAST SEASON Gary NevilleLeague Position 2nd Patrice EvraF A Cup : Owen HargreavesLeague Cup : Rio FerdinandUefa Champions League: SemiFinal Wes BrownTROPHY CABINET AndersonLEAGUE CHAMPIONS: 1907/08, 1910/11, 1951/52 Dimitar Berbatov1955/56, 1956/57, 1964/65, 1966/67, 1992/93, Wayne Rooney1993/94, 1995/96, 1996/97, 1998/99, 1999/00, Ryan Giggs2000/01 2002/03,2006/07,2007/08,2008/09 Park Ji-SungFA CUP : 1909, 1948, 1963, 1977, 1983,1985, 1990 Nemanja Vidid1994,1996,1999,2004. Michael CarrickLEAGUE CUP : 1992, 2006. NaniEUROPEAN CUP : 1067/68, 1998/99, 2007/08. Paul ScholesTransfers in Danny Welbeck Fábio Rafael Chris smalling John OShea Jonny Evans Darren Fletcher Danny Simpson Darron Gibson Tomasz Kuszczak Federico Macheda Antonio Valencia Hernandez Gabriel Obertan Michael Owen
10. manchester citySTAR PLAYER stars Carlos Tevez 24 Striker/MidfieldMANCHESTER CITY INFOYear Formed: 1887Nickname: The CitizensStadium: City of Manchester StadiumMANCHESTER CITY LAST SEASONLeague Position : 4thF A Cup : 25 E. Adebayor FLeague Cup : 18 G. Barry MTROPHY CABINET 39 C. Bellamy F 27 Benjani FLEAGUE CHAMPIONS: 1936/37, 1967/68. 3 W. Bridge DFA CUP : 1904, 1934, 1956, 1969. 29 K. Etuhu MLEAGUE CUP : 1970, 1976 15 Garrido D EUROPEAN CUP WINNERS’ CUP :1969/70 1 S. Given G G. Hartley G 7 S. Ireland M 6 M. Johnson M Transfers in 33 V. Kompany D 4 N. Onuoha D 2 M. Richards D 14 R. Santa Cruz F 16 K. Schmeichel G 12 S. Taylor G 32 C. Tevez F 28 H. Toure D 36 J. Vidal DYaya toure 40 V. Weiss M David silva 8 S. Wright-Phillips M 5 Zabaleta D 34 N. de Jong M Yaya toure M Davi Siva M Alex Nimley F Jerome Boateng