The press were in love with Samir Nasri for much of this season after some great performances. On paper he didn’t look amazing, with just 1 assist to rival Edwin Van der Sar’s record. Arsenal favourites, Patrice Evra, Alexander Hleb and Nicklas Bendtner, amongst 175 other players, all managed to set up more goals than Nasri this season. With ten league goals to his name, it’s nothing to be scoffed at, particularly as it made him Arsenal’s 2nd highest scorer but again, it’s hardly worthy of the write-ups he received. Let’s remember Nani managed 18 assists and 9 goals this season but didn’t receive half the plaudits.
Of course, football isn’t played on paper though, so whilst goals, assists, completed passes etc. are interesting to look at, seeing a midfielder complete 85% of his passes over 8 yards isn’t the reason why we fell inlove with the game. He’s a bit of a wet lettuce and I don’t like that permanent sneer he seems to have on his face, but the lad can play football.
Last week, Patrice Evra made a joke about Nasri joining United, claiming that after three barren seasons with Arsenal, during the six year spell they have gone without winning a trophy, he should come to United for some silverware.
“Little prince, if you want to become king you know where you should go,” he said. “Every year at Manchester is a guarantee of a title. I have been here five years and cannot keep count of the trophies I’ve won.”
When Sir Alex Ferguson got the United job, they were in the relegation zone. Three and a half years later, in 1990, he won his first trophy with the club. Since then, he has never gone longer than a season without winning something. In those 22 years, he has won 27 trophies, and has gone without in just four of those seasons. It’s incredible to think Fergie has seen his team lift at least one trophy in 18/22 years. The only seasons he hasn’t won something since that first trophy are 1995, 1998, 2002 and 2005.
Wenger won his first trophy with Arsenal in 1998, yet has seen them lift a trophy on just 5/14 years. This leaves 1999, 2000, 2001, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011 as years when they have won nothing.
It’s fairly obvious which club you should pick if you’re keen on winning.
Wenger has of course ruled out any possibility of selling Nasri to United, as you would imagine. “One thing’s for sure, we’re not selling him to Manchester United,” he said last week. Yet, in usual Arsenal fashion, they have allowed one of their best players to get within just 12 months of his contract expiring. He doesn’t seem particularly keen to put pen to paper, unless he’s trying to make them sweat for more money. When Fabregas leaves, something you would imagine was a certainty for this summer, why would other top players want to stay, particularly when you’ve got the promise of trophies elsewhere?
“Let’s find out if their interest is true first, and then we’ll talk about it,” Nasri replied when asked about joining United by TF1’s Telefoot. “I don’t know if I will sign a new contract. Anyway, the discussions are on-going. Do I want to go to United? We should see if their interest is real and if it is concrete first.”
Nasri faded away as the season went on, just like his team, which obviously is a bit of a concern. Is he naturally a bottle job or is it something that Arsenal have brought out of him after three years there? If you take a lad with this ability and throw him in to the United set up, playing for the greatest manager alongside top winners, it’s hard to imagine we wouldn’t get the best out of him.
Evra is keen, Nasri seems keen, so what’s holding us back? Probably the thought of our fanbase trying to fit Samir Nasri’s name in to the “Baby give it up” tune that we’ve used for Nicky Butt and Rodrigo Possebon. Unlike the two United players, Nasri doesn’t have enough syllables in his name, meaning the Arsenal fans call him “Naseri” in the song. Cringe. Until we start singing for “Roonery”, I suggest that if we do sign this Goon, we come up with something a bit better, which if we’re honest, shouldn’t be hard!
Come on then, little prince.
The RoM 2016-17 Season Preview is available for just £5. It includes an EXCLUSIVE interview with Mikael Silvestre, a Q&A with the country's top journalists about our transfer targets, articles by brilliant United writers, and so much more. All profit goes to Trafford Macmillan so please support this fantastic cause.