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Jurgen Klopp is considering a move to sign Bukayo Saka

Bukayo Saka - Arsenal.

Liverpool’s 1-0 defeat to Leicester City in the Premier League has many fans questioning the depth in attack and even though Mohamed Salah was guilty of missing a penalty as well as the rebounding header, Sadio Mane received the bulk of the post-match criticism.

Salah has been exceptional this season, scoring 22 goals and assisting 9</strong> and beyond that, his all-round gameplay has been sensational to watch but Mane’s attacking output has dried up again recently.

More worryingly, he looks dangerously short on confidence, his first touch is never as sharp as it should be and he often looks incapable of beating his man even if his relationship with Andy Robertson down the left flank was on-point until the Scotsman was suspended vs. Spurs.

Jurgen Klopp considering a move to sign Arsenal’s Bukayo Saka

The 20-year-old has been one of the most enjoyable players to watch in the Premier League this season and Mikel Arteta has to be commended on getting the most out of him and Emile Smith-Rowe.

Bukayo Saka and Emile Smith Rowe - Liverpool, Arsenal.

In all competitions, he has 6 goals and 4 assist with the majority of his output coming in the Premier League and given that the Gunners are competing for top four and not the title, it’s impressive that such a young player is posting such impressive numbers.

Which explains Jurgen Klopp’s interest as per Ian McGarry on the Transfer Window Podcast.

“We have reported on The Transfer Window Podcast that Liverpool are looking to the future with regards to the fact that they expect to sell at least two of their attacking players,” McGarry said.

“Saka is someone who is a player who suits Liverpool’s style. Without question the Gunners would be devastated to lose someone of Saka’s quality and are attempting to tie him down to a long term deal.

“My understanding is that there have been talks with his representatives with regards to giving him a contract upgrade at Arsenal.

“Liverpool would provide the opportunity and platform for him to play and compete at the highest level. And that would certainly be something that I’m told he and his representatives are very interested in.”

Salah contract extension and Bukayo Saka moulded to take over from him?

If Liverpool extend Mohamed Salah’s contract and sign Bukayo Saka to one day take his place in the starting XI, it could be the perfect long-term strategy from the Reds.

They’re two very different players stylistically but I think Saka has the potential to become a world class inside forward with the right coaching and there isn’t a better coach, and certainly not in the Premier League, than Jurgen Klopp to help him reach those levels.

Jarrod Bowen and Raphinha have also been linked as names Liverpool are interested in to compete with Salah and provide cover for the prolific Egyptian but Saka might have the most potential long-term.

Bukayo Saka - Liverpool, Arsenal.

He’s only 20 and yet is already one of Arsenal’s most valuable players but I think the most interesting quote from McGarry is that Saka is interested in moving to Anfield. I mean, it should come as no surprise as Liverpool have been incredible under Klopp and he would go to the next level under the German.

Saka would not come cheap as his contract only expires in 2024 which gives Arsenal two years to try and sort out a contract extension while Transfermarkt value him at £58.5m which is likely above what Liverpool would be willing to pay.

Tony Adams – Mr Arsenal

Tony Adams was ‘Mr Arsenal’. No one deserves the title more than he, especially after spending his entire career at Highbury.

In that time, Adams grew in stature, quickly taking up a place in the centre of the back four. So confident of his own ability, he started shouting instructions at the more experienced pros in the team. Although slightly perturbed about a youngster who had risen through the ranks to finally get in the first team, the likes of David O’Leary and Kenny Sansom quickly realised Adams was something special.

The 1980’s

Tony Adams had a nightmare debut and came only four weeks after his 17th birthday. In a home game against Sunderland on 5th November 1983, he was at fault for both of Sunderland’s goals as Arsenal lost 2-1. He would only play another two games that season.

Don Howe, the man who gave Adams his debut, was fired in 1986. Former Arsenal midfielder George Graham came in to replace him and made Adams a regular in the first team, where he would remain an integral part of the Arsenal defence for the next sixteen years.

The club won the League Cup in his first season in charge, giving Adams his first piece of silverware. They returned to Wembley in the same competition the following year but lost 3-2 to underdogs Luton Town. Four months earlier, Adams had been given the captain’s armband. He would have lifted the cup if Arsenal had beaten Luton, but he wouldn’t have long to wait until another trophy came along.

Adams made his international debut in 1987 in a friendly with Spain and was selected by Bobby Robson to play at Euro ‘88. He scored England’s only goal of the championships, but this was forgotten by the English fans and media after Marco van Basten gave him the run-around and scored a hat-trick in the final group game.

Arsenal started the 1988/89 season brightly and were top of the table saw Adams turn from the figure of ridicule to the captain of the league champions in the space of eight weeks.
In a televised game at Manchester United, Adams scored a bizarre own goal to give the home side the lead. He would rectify matters with an equaliser, but the press were quick to get on his back.

Headlines referring to the Arsenal as a donkey were unfairly used. Donkey sounds followed from opposing fans followed Adams wherever he played for years to come, but this would only spur him on.

Arsenal won the league title and it was Adams who lifted the trophy after a famous 2-0 win against Liverpool on the last game of the season. Michael Thomas scored Arsenal’s second goal that clinched the title in the dying seconds of the match. Forget Sergio Aguero’s goal for Manchester City in 2012, this was the greatest end to a league season!

The 1990’s
The league championship trophy returned to Highbury two seasons later. In the December of that season, Adams was jailed for four months after being caught drink-driving. After serving half of his sentence, Adam was released and regained his place in the Arsenal line-up.

Alcohol was already a big part of his life and it affected his personal life. On the pitch though, Adams remained a strong and fearsome defender, barking out the orders and always putting his body on the line to keep the opposition at bay.

Two years later, Arsenal became the first club to win both the League Cup and FA Cup in the same season. Adams grabbed the headlines in both competitions.

After the 2-1 victory over Sheffield Wednesday in the League Cup Final, Adams ran to congratulate the match winner Steve Morrow. He tried to lift the midfielder onto his shoulders. It didn’t work out and Morrow fell to the floor, badly breaking his arm and was taken off to hospital with an oxygen mask to ease the pain.

Better memories were had in the FA Cup as Adams headed in the only goal of the game in a 1-0 victory over Tottenham in the semi final. The following day, a tabloid ran with the headline ‘Donkey Won The Derby’ – probably the best form of apology for the headlines four years earlier!

As a reward for the FA Cup win, Arsenal entered the European Cup Winners Cup. Adams headed the winner in the Quarter Final against Torino and lifted the trophy after a 1-0 victory over holders Parma in the final.

England didn’t reach the 1994 World Cup in America so Adams would have to wait another two years to try and atone for his display against Holland in 1988. He played well at Euro 96, despite giving away a penalty in the second match against Scotland. His Arsenal colleague David Seaman saved the resulting spot-kick from Gary McAllister and England won 2-0.

Adams later revealed that he was fighting the urge to drink throughout the tournament, wanting to stay sober and focus on the matches. After the semi final defeat to Germany, he went out on a bender lasting several days. It was at this point he went for rehabilitation and has not had a drop of alcohol since.

Arsene Wenger became Arsenal manager a few weeks into the start of the 1996/97 season and revolutionised the way the players prepared for games. It helped Adams with his alcohol problems and kept his career going for another couple of years with new and advanced training methods.

In the 1997/98 season – Wenger’s first full season at the club – Arsenal won a league and cup double for the first time since 1970/71. Adams scored the fourth goal in the home game against Everton that confirmed the league title.
Running from deep, Adams chased a through ball from his centre back partner Steve Bould and lashed the ball into the back of the net – with his weaker foot! It is one of the most iconic goals in Arsenal history and his celebration of spreading his arms out and walking serenely in the sun has been replicated in a statue made in his honour outside the Emirates Stadium.

The 2000’s

The 2001/02 season was Adams’ final season at the club. He was 35 now and in his third decade at the club. He went out on a high, as Arsenal won both the league and FA Cup for a second Double in four years.

A farewell match was arranged with Scottish champions Celtic at Highbury nine days after Adams lifted the FA Cup in his last competitive match. A capacity crowd was able to see our beloved captain in the famous red and white for one last time.

After 672 appearances and 49 goals over 19 years, Adams retired as an Arsenal legend. ‘Mr Arsenal’ is a fitting tribute to a fantastic defender and captain.

EXCLUSIVE: Arsenal don’t plan on loaning Martinelli out next season

LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 21: Gabriel Martinelli of Arsenal looks on during the Premier League match between Chelsea FC and Arsenal FC at Stamford Bridge on January 21, 2020 in London, United Kingdom. PHOTO BY SHAUN BOTTERILL/GETTY IMAGES.

Despite his recent lack of game time, Gabriel Martinelli is a valued member of Mikel Arteta’s side and will stay at the club next season, according to Arsenal Central.

Arsenal’s season was transformed by Mikel Arteta’s increased inclusion of the club’s most exciting youth stars in Bukayo Saka, Gabriel Martinelli and Emile Smith Rowe.

The trio helped the Gunners get back to winning ways but Martinelli hasn’t played nearly as much as Saka and Smith Rowe recently but, as we’re reliably informed, there aren’t any nefarious reasons for his recent lack of game time.

LONDON, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 09: Gabriel Martinelli of Arsenal celebrates after scoring his sides first goal during the Premier League match between West Ham United and Arsenal FC at London Stadium on December 09, 2019 in London, United Kingdom. PHOTO BY JULIAN FINNEY/GETTY IMAGES.

Saka has played 2,001 minutes for Arsenal this season and Smith Rowe will soon hit the 1,000 minute mark for the first time in his fledgeling career. Meanwhile, Martinelli has barely broken the 200-minute barrier for the Gunners this term.

From the outside, this is confusing for Arsenal supporters as, by all metrics, he has been fantastic when he’s featured while the likes of Willian have looked very poor.

Our source reports that the Brazilian is fully fit despite some of the conspiracy theories that can be found on Twitter and Reddit, he’s training as well as you’d imagine and there is no plan for him to be sent out on loan.

At this stage, it’s simply a selection choice on Arteta’s part and supporters will simply need to hope the Spanish manager picks him to start or hands him a chance from the bench.

LONDON, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 22: Gabriel Martinelli of Arsenal goes down injured during the Carabao Cup Quarter Final match between Arsenal and Manchester City at Emirates Stadium on December 22, 2020 in London, England. PHOTO BY CATHERINE IVILL/GETTY IMAGES.

We can report that there is a desire to be cautious with Martinelli after the knee injury he suffered that saw him miss 169 days. At such a young age (19) where his development is still well underway, another serious injury could have serious implications on his career.

Furthermore, Martin Ødegaard’s loan move to the Emirates Stadium has also increased the options available to Arteta.

Mavropanos form has added to Arteta’s defensive headache for next season

(Photo by THOMAS KIENZLE/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

The 2021/22 season is already being viewed as a crucial year for Arsenal for both the club as well as the players.

With the current campaign likely to see the Gunners finish outside a European place in the Premier League table for the second year in a row and the prospects of playing continental football next season looking slim barring a miracle in the Europa League, plenty could be riding on the future of Arsenal when August rolls around.

Fans will be expecting a return to European football of some sort, as well, as more squad renovations from Mikel Arteta and Edu that will aid Arsenal in their attempt to returning to the pinnacle of the English game.

Yet one position that is, for once, not in desperate need of additional signings is the centre-back role.

Depth and quality in defence

(Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images)

Despite selling the likes of Sokratis and Shkodran Mustafi in the January transfer window, Arsenal’s options in the central of defence remain deep, with Rob Holding having his best season to date with the Gunners as well as the likes of experienced heads in Pablo Mari and David Luiz also featuring prominently for the north London side.

Summer signing Gabriel has too been impressive in his debut year in England, with Calum Chambers just last week returning to the Premier League picture with an impressive display at the back in Arsenal’s 1-1 draw against Burnley.

With David Luiz the only player from the current pool likely to leave in the summer as his contract comes to an end, Arteta will have to make an important decision in the off-season as to who his main centre-back pairing should be heading into the 2021/22 campaign, and he will have two extra options to consider, as well.

Whilst William Saliba has captured most of the fans attention this season for his lack of first-team minutes in the first half of the season to now being a regular starter for Nice, Konstantinos Mavropanos is starting to show the form that made the Greek defender such an intriguing prospect when he first arrived in 2017.

Flourishing in Germany

(Photo by Pool/Marius Becker – Pool/Getty Images)

The 23-year-old defender has quietly gone about his business in the Bundesliga this season with Stuttgart, who this year have been one of the most entertaining teams to watch in the German top-flight, recording a 5-1 wins against both Borussia Dortmund and Schalke and currently sitting seven points off the Europa League spots.

And Mavropanos’ form has been key to this impressive season for Pellegrino Matarazzo’s side, with the Arsenal man this month being nominated for the Bundesliga Rookie of the Month for his recent performances for Stuttgart, and it’s not just fans and pundits the Greek defender is impressing.

In a recent interview with The Athletic, Stuttgart sporting director and former head of recruitment at Arsenal Sven Mislintat lavished Mavropanos with praise, saying: “He (Mavropanos) has all the hardware and all the software to be a great defender… If he can stabilise physically, he’s undoubtedly a Bundesliga-level defender… He’s one of the fastest centre-backs in the league, alongside Dayot Upamecano.”

A selection headache for Arteta

(ALL RIGHTS RESERVED BY THE EVENING STANDARD.)

Mavropanos year in the Bundesliga has done the towering defender a world of good with the Greek centre-back constantly being out of the Arsenal squad due to injury in his three years with the club, yet his form for Stuttgart does cause some problems for Arteta.

Assuming David Luiz leaves Arsenal in the summer, the Gunners will still have a plethora of centre-backs in their squad with the caveat being that all of them have a chance of making it into the starting XI of the opening day of the Premier League season, and Mavropanos could find himself amongst that group.

With Saliba also returning to north London in the summer, Arteta will have some big decisions to make heading into the 2021/22 campaign, and Mavropanos form has given the Arsenal manager plenty to think about as the Greek defender has looked to have finally found his groove in football.

Nketiah on West Ham’s radar as striker approaches final year of contract

(Photo by Glyn KIRK / AFP) (Photo by GLYN KIRK/AFP via Getty Images)

Eddie Nketiah is reportedly on West Ham’s radar as the Arsenal striker heads into the final year of his contract with the Gunners.

According to the Daily Star, the 21-year-old England youth international remains a target for the Hammers following reports in the January transfer window that David Moyes’ side were keen on signing Nketiah following the departure of Sebastian Haller to Ajax.

The Evening Standard reported, at the time, that Nketiah was seen as a replacement for the French striker during the window, as the Hale End graduate only has a year left on his current deal with Arsenal.

(Photo by SVEIN OVE EKORNESVAG/NTB/AFP via Getty Images)

Nketiah has struggled for first-team minutes this year despite impressing early on in the campaign, with the young attacker scoring a late winner for Arsenal against West Ham in the second Premier League game of the season, as well as four goals in the League Cup and Europa League.

Despite a goalscoring instinct that has made him the all-time England U21 goalscorer this season, Mikel Arteta has been reluctant to use Nketiah much this campaign, with the former Chelsea academy man failing to make even the bench in last weekend’s 3-1 win over Leicester City.

(Photo by Will Oliver – Pool/Getty Images)

At 21, Nketiah is at an important part of his career where he will be eager to play regular first-team football, yet with Arsenal signing Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to a new long-term contract in the summer and Gabriel Martinelli back to full fitness, the striker’s time in north London could be coming to an end.

And West Ham could prove to be a good platform for Nketiah. The Hammers have had an extraordinary season so far that could see the east Londoners secure European football for the first time in five years, and with a lack of a natural striker in the squad, the Arsenal attacker could find himself a vital clog for Moyes’ side heading into the future.

Arsenal Nostalgia – Nwankwo Kanu’s heroic hat-trick at Chelsea, 1999/00

23 Oct 1999: (L to R) Marc Overmars and Ray Parlour congratulate Arsenal team mate Kwankwo Kanu on his second and equalising goal during the FA Carling Premier League match against Chelsea played at Stamford Bridge, London. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED BY GRAHAM CHADWICK/ALLSPORT.

This is a throwback to when Nwankwo Kanu scored a fantastic hat-trick away to Chelsea on 23rd October 1999.

There had been a torrential downpour on the day of the game and had left many areas of the pitch completely saturated. Puddles had even formed in small patches of the pitch, making it difficult for the ball to be passed along the floor with any great efficiency.

Chelsea scored either side of half time to give them a commanding lead. The Arsenal fans, housed in the lower tier of the East Stand at Stamford Bridge watched on in dismay as first Tore-Andre Flo and then Dan Petrescu scored giving Chelsea a commanding lead.

Enter Nwankwo Kanu!

23 Oct 1999: Nwankwo Kanu of Arsenal scores a dramatic 90th minute winning goal from an acute angle during the FA Carling Premier League match against Chelsea played at Stamford Bridge, London. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED BY GRAHAM CHADWICK/ALLSPORT.

The lanky Nigerian hadn’t given up on the game and went on a personal crusade to turn the match on its head, firing in a hat-trick in the final quarter of an hour to give The Gunners all three points.

His first came on 75 minutes. Marc Overmars took a pot shot at goal from 25 yards, but Kanu got in the way of it. He had enough time to turn before toe-poking a low shot past Chelsea goalkeeper Ed de Goey.

Eight minutes later, Kanu got Arsenal on level terms. He got on the end of a low cross on the right that had evaded Chelsea’s midfielder Gustavo Poyet. His hefty touch took the ball between Poyet and Marcel Desailly as he powered the ball past de Goey at his near post.

His third and final goal of the afternoon was quite simply unbelievable. It all started when he raced out wide on the left and charged down an attempted clearance by the Chelsea right back. The ball skidded off the sodden Stamford Bridge turf and stayed on the field of play.

Nwankwo Kanu celebrates his goal against Chelsea as his hattrick won the Arsenal the game. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED BY JON BUCKLE/EMPICS VIA GETTY IMAGES.

Inexplicably, Ed de Goey chased out of his penalty area to get to the ball and slid in to tackle Kanu. A simple side-step was required to evade the Dutch goalkeeper’s lunge, but Kanu still had a lot of work to do.

Davor Suker and Marc Overmars waved to the Nigerian from the edge of the box, urging for him to lay the ball back for them. This would have been the simpler option, but Kanu had other ideas. From an almost-impossible angle about two yards off the goal-line and the edge of the penalty area, Chelsea’s Marcel Desailly and Frank Leboeuf blocked his path to goal.

With a curling effort, he managed to get the ball around both World Cup winners and into the back of the net.

It was a quite sensational hat-trick that gave Arsenal all three points.

Arsenal to face Olympiakos in UEFA Europa League RO16

Arsenal have been drawn against Olympiakos in Round of 16 of the UEFA Europa League after a dramatic 3-2 win against Benfica last night.

The Gunners turned around a 2-1 deficit to win 3-2 against the Portuguese giants in last night’s contest in Athens to progress to the final 16 of the UEL 4-3 on aggregate, and today’s draw will see Arsenal face off against Olympiakos in the next round of the competition.

A Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang brace and a strike from Kieran Tierney saw Mikel Arteta’s side squeeze past Benfica in a match that saw the Primeira Liga side hit the post in stoppage time amongst many nervy moments for the north Londoners.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was the hero for Arsenal in Athens. (Photo by ARIS MESSINIS / AFP) (Photo by ARIS MESSINIS/AFP via Getty Images)

Aubameyang’s heroics have set up a Round of 16 tie with Olympiakos for the Gunners. The Greek side progressed in dramatic fashion as well in last night’s Round of 32 fixtures, with Ahmed Mahgoub scoring an 88th-minute goal that saw the Athens-based side book their place into the next round at the expense of PSV 5-4 on aggregate.

Arsenal fans will no doubt have sour memories of Olympiakos, though, as the Greek giants eliminated the Gunners from the Europa League last season in the Round of 32 as the Thrylos snuck a 2-1 win at the Emirates to knock Arteta’s side out of Europe in embarrassing fashion.

Granit Xhaka speaks out on trolls after online abuse from fans

Despite a poor start to the 2019/20 season, Granit Xhaka has shown his quality and importance to Arsenal under new manager Mikel Arteta, starting 30 of Arsenal's 38 league games this season. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED BY GOAL.

Granit Xhaka has had his say on the recent spike of online abuse aimed towards footballers in recent weeks, with the Swiss midfielder himself a target of such hurtful comments from trolls.

Speaking ahead of tomorrow’s must-win Europa League clash against Benfica in Athens, the Gunners midfielder gave his two cents on the matter of online abuse on social media, with a number of Arsenal players such as Eddie Nketiah and Willian also being targeted by so-called ‘fans’ on platforms such as Twitter and Instagram.

Xhaka has long been the centre of abuse from some Arsenal fans since joining the club from Borussia Monchengladbach in the summer of 2017, with the 28-year-old midfielder infamously swearing and gesturing at Gooners after being substituted off against Crystal Palace in the 2019/20 season.

When asked about the latest round of abuse Xhaka has received from Arsenal supporters on social media, the Swiss international said via Sky Sports News: “It is one of many (examples), if I am honest.

“If I showed the others what they write, I think I have to close my social media, everyone has to close social media. I say that before and I will say that now and, in the future, as well, it is only about me. I am the guy who is on the pitch. It is not my wife, it is not my little one, it is not my family. So if you want to criticise someone, no problem to criticise me like a person, like a player.”

Granit Xhaka taunted Arsenal fans after he was booed in a match against Crystal Palace. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED BY THE INDEPENDENT.

The former Arsenal captain added: “The problem is only if you lose, then it is a problem. It is not a problem when you win. If you lose, everyone hates you, everyone is writing you things like, it is not possible to understand how they can write something like this, you know. I wish I could meet the people who write me the things, to sit with them, eyes by eyes and to ask them, ‘why are you writing things like this?’”

Xhaka’s case is sadly just one of many that has been arisen in recent weeks with a number of Premier League players being the subject of abuse from faceless trolls on social media, with the likes of Manchester United players Axel Tuanzebe and Anthony Martial and Chelsea defender Antonio Rudiger being targeted by accounts online.

Should Arsenal’s transfer window be considered a success?

Arsenal fans were delighted when promising Real Madrid midfielder Martin Odegaard joined the Gunners on a loan this winter, however they will be hoping Edu and Mikel Arteta can make it a permanent deal in the summer too. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED BY GOAL.

With the transfer window slamming shut on Monday evening, Arsenal’s squad for the rest of the season is now finalised, and this time there shouldn’t be anyone left out.

Edu and Mikel Arteta managed to bring in two players on loan, Maty Ryan from Brighton and Martin Odegaard, a highly rated attacking midfielder, from Real Madrid. However, whilst no permanent signings were made, there were plenty of deals in the sales department.

In total, Arsenal sold 9 players this January, including Mesut Ozil, Sokratis and Shkodran Mustafi on free transfers and William Saliba, Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Joe Willock on loans. With all things considered, have Arsenal had a successful transfer window?

You would struggle to count on your hands the number of problems Arsenal had coming into the window, however many would argue the main problems were to get rid of deadwood, bring in an attacking midfielder and buy a back-up goalkeeper.

Impressively, Arsenal managed all of these things, even if many of the permanent departures were through contract terminations. The loan purchase of Maty Ryan was a welcome shock to everyone, with not even a rumour being mentioned of a deal until its announcement, and the signing of Martin Odegaard was very well received, especially given the limited options available in the market.

Given Runar Alex Runarsson’s poor performances in the cup competitions, Arsenal realised a better back-up goalkeeper was needed, so when Maty Ryan was announced without even a rumour, there was a sense of delighted shock around the Arsenal fanbase. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED BY FOOTBALL.LONDON.

On the other hand, Arsenal failed to bring in a back-up left back, an issue that became very apparent when seeing how the injury of Kieran Tierney affected the Gunners’ displays down the left-hand side. However, the performances of Cedric in that position have certainly given a good boost of confidence to supporters that it won’t be too great an issue in the short-term.

Arsenal managed to loan out Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Joe Willock to Premier League sides and found William Saliba a short-term home in Ligue 1, however the failure to loan Reiss Nelson and Runar Alex Runarsson are small faults in what was a good window for getting rid of players.

Nelson has had limited game time this season, with injuries playing a part in that, so a loan for the second half of the season would’ve been very beneficial to him. However, given the competition for places out wide, this almost feels like a wasted season for the Englishman in terms of his development.

With that being said though, it should be considered a very good window from Arsenal, especially given the financial circumstances in regards to Covid-19. While there are certain things that Mikel Arteta and Edu will be disappointed in, few would be able to say that the Gunners haven’t had a productive January transfer window.

Arsenal’s flawless first half eclipsed by VAR blunder at Molineux

Nicolas Pepe and Alexandre Lacazette celebrate Arsenal's first goal against Wolves ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Getty Images

Arsenal had two guilt-edged chances to go out of sight from the eyes of Nuno’s Wolf pack within the first two minutes of the game on Tuesday night.

Arsenal’s summer recruit from Spain, Thomas Partey was dominating the midfield being a playmaker general and was not giving Joao Moutinho and Ruben Neves a sniff in the first couple of exchanges within the match.

The Ghanaian international lifted a well timed ball into the path of Bukayo Saka who hit the woodwork within 43 seconds of the referees first whistle and a minute later the 19 Year Old’s excellent effort was ruled out by VAR after Alexandre Lacazette was found to be a ‘toenail’ offside.

The immaculate interplay from Arsenal did not stop there as Nicolas Pepe sat down Nelson Semedo in the build up to The Gunner’s breaking the deadlock as he nutmegged not one but two Wolves defenders and curled the ball into the top corner past Rui Patricio. It really was a FIFA-esque goal, the skill was impeccable and the finish was exquisite.

Craig Pawson glanced at his watch and continued to let the game flow well into the 47th minute despite the fourth official indicating two added minutes. The ball was slid through to Wolves new January signing, Willian Jose who fell as if someone had sniped him from the stands at Molineux, his dramatisation and manipulation of the incident left the referee no option but to send David Luiz off despite the only contact being from the Wolves striker dragging his leg out to make sure David Luiz could not move out of the way.

Craig Pawson sends David Luiz off before Half Time ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Getty Images

Unlike the Manchester United game where Mike Dean went to look at the pitch-side monitor before awarding a penalty and a red card for Jan Bednerek’s foul on Anthony Martial, Craig Pawson did not. There is an issue of competency and an issue of consistency amongst the referees in the Premier League. Arsenal were robbed, David Luiz should not have been sent off, it is that plain and simple.

Arsenal fans have created a petition to make a clear out of Premier League referees at the end of this season after a shocking performance on the pitch by Craig Pawson and off the pitch by Jon Moss getting his wages after sitting in his warm VAR studio at Stockley Park after giving Arsenal fans a heart-attack and a night to forget.

The technology is not the issue as it is not a robotised process, it is completely human controlled despite the technology being there. Unlike goal line technology which is black and white there are so many grey areas when it comes to the use of VAR.

The team in the VAR studio making the decisions. It is either that Craig Pawson to make a decision live which begs the question why he is employed by the FA or it is the fault of Jon Moss for giving ill advice to the on pitch referee, either way it is huge incompetency from the referees and something has to be done.

The game turned on it’s head from this point on. It went from the press box talking about Arsenal breaking a record of winning more back to back away games than ever in the club’s history to Joao Moutinho scoring his first goal in three years at Molineux and Wolves breaking their eight-game winless streak in the Premier League.

Bernd Leno was given a straight red card and Arsenal went down to nine men as the Arsenal number one was forced to intercept play after a ball from the Wolves right back towards the feet of the monster, Adama Traore. The German got his footing all wrong, had a lapse of concentration and if Arsenal weren’t ruled out of a comeback, they were by the 72nd minute.

Bernd Leno walking to the stands after being sent off against Wolves ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Getty Images

When it rains, it pours at Arsenal. Just like the night Aston Villa destroyed Arsenal on their own turf, Tuesday night was synonymous to that.

Craig Pawson should really hand in his resignation slip to the FA on Wednesday morning if he had an sense of self-reflection then that’s what he would do.