Has the curse taken another victim?
He was supposed to be the antidote
He was supposed to shake the disease
But I fear, he has succumbed to the same fate as many in his position before
Ever since Smudger adorned the shirt in the early 90’s, many have tried to undertake the duties meeting the job specifications, but none has really succeeded or stuck around long enough to see the job through.
With Bergkamp’s arrival in ‘95, Merse was allocated the no. 9 shirt. What followed was a dip in form and a well documented spiral into drink, drugs and gambling.
So the curse began.
Then came Anelka…
‘Le Sulk’, the precocious teenager, plucked from PSG for a mere £500,000, lasted 2 seasons in the role, before starting the trend of ‘following the dough’ by swanning off to Real Madrid for the tidy sum of £22.5m.
He then endeared himself further to Arsenal faithful by whoring himself around any EPL club that would have him.
Next was Suker…..
But when he signed for the Arsenal, the sun was setting on his career & with 8 goals in 22 games, he was eventually shipped to East London to see out his retirement.
The Fox in the Box’ was signed from Everton for £8m, and was was supposed to be the answer to all our prayers.
In 3 seasons, he dramatically failed to live up to the expectations & was last seen in plying his trade for Accrington Stanley.
Jose Antonio Reyes…..
Jose Antonio Reyes them came and went. Another big money signing (£10m) attempt to break the curse came & went. Jose stared with promise, but home sickness and the Neville brothers put paid to any chance of him claiming the shirt as his own and he jumped ship back to Spain at the earliest opportunity.
Julio ‘The Beast’ Baptista came with a big reputation and with an outstanding display against Liverpool in the Carling Cup, looked like he might be up to the job.
But alas, it was soon realised that his bark was worse than his bite and in 2007 he was shipped off to Roma.
An instant hit with the fans, Eduardo came the closest to filling Smudger’s boots. That was up until that fateful day in February 2008 when his horrific leg break caused his and Arsenals season to crumble. Upon his return he was never the same player and he too was sold onto pastures new.
The least said about Ju-Young Park the better. Basically a PR stunt that went drastically wrong. Signed in a panic, never up to the job, really not worthy of the number and demoted to number 30 the following season.
I do hope shirts sales in Korea went up.
Ha Ha Poldi.
Wenger tried an alternate cure to shake the disease. ‘Give the Number 9 to a Number 10′. As we all know, Lukas had the capability to play anywhere across the front line, could score howitzers for fun and obviously loved the club. But for some reason, Arsene just didn’t think that was enough and after 2 1/2 years, Inter were singing, ‘Don’t ya wish your striker was Po-Dol-Ski, Don’t ya’!!!!
In 2016, Lucas Perez, arrived from Deportivo, with a big fee and big expectations.
However, Arsene obviously changed his mind, because every time Lucas showed any promise, he was instantly dropped to the bench or the reserves. In 2017, with the arrival of Lacazette, he was demoted to number 28 and then off loaded back Deportivo on loan.
Then there was Lacazette…
A club record fee of £46m, one of the most sort after strikers in the world and a scoring record that placed him as one of the best strikers in the world.
But, unfortunately for Alex, the team was based around Alexis and never played to his strengths and many are beginning to doubt if the Frenchman has a role at the Emirates. I am sure the odds will be dropping on Lacazette being Arsenal’s Number 9 after the way Lucas was treated when he himself arrived. If you are wondering you can take advantage of free bets here.
The guy has done nothing wrong, but with the arrival of Aubameyang for a new club record (£56m) and his injury, his playing time is going to be limited to the Europa Cup, at best and I wouldn’t be surprised if he seeks pastures new in August.
And so the Curse continues………