Matteo Guendouzi

Guendouzi to Man United
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Transfer news: Guendouzi to Man United; Pereira to Arsenal

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In the latest transfer news Matteo Guendouzi has been linked with a move to Man United, while Danilo Pereira could be heading to Arsenal.

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First up, let’s start in Manchester as Man United have been linked with a move for Arsenal and France midfielder Matteo Guendouzi, via L’Equipe in France.

The 21-year-old central midfielder was left out of Arsenal’s squad for the win at Southampton on Thursday as Mikel Arteta said it was for ‘squad management’ reasons and any issues would be dealt with internally.

Guendouzi lashed out at Brighton’s Neal Maupay last weekend after Arsenal’s 2-1 defeat at apparently goaded Brighton’s players throughout the game about how he earned much more more than them financially.

Since Arteta arrived at Arsenal, Guendouzi hasn’t been a regular starter and he’s only getting minutes now due to midfield injuries. Why on earth would Man United want to sign him?

Well, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer does need a combative midfielder and Guendouzi is certainly that. He has Scott McTominay, Fred and Nemanja Matic as true holding midfielders and Guendouzi is young, so could be a replacement for Matic who is nearing the end of his career. That said, Guendouzi is a bit of a loose cannon given his actions on and off the pitch since he arrived in England and this would be a gamble.

Danilo Pereira to Arsenal
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Focusing on who could replace Guendouzi in midfield for Arsenal, FC Porto midfielder Danilo Pereira is reportedly a target for the Gunners according to ESPN.

Danilo, 28, has a $70 million release clause in his contract but per the report, Porto will accept around $25 million for Pereira due to financial concerns around the coronavirus pandemic. With Arsenal previously linked with a move for Atletico Madrid’s Thomas Partey, it is believed Pereira is seen as the cheaper alternative.

Arteta doesn’t have a lot of cash to spend and Arsenal’s players and staff have already agreed a wage cut. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette could leave this summer, along with Guendouzi and others, to raise funds. There’s no doubt this Arsenal squad needs an overhaul, especially defensively, and Pereira is a solid, reliable midfielder and brings plenty of experience.

Guendouzi escapes FA ban despite hitting Maupay

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Matteo Guendouzi has escaped an FA ban despite hitting Neal Maupay on Saturday.

The Arsenal midfielder swung and grabbed Maupay in the throat at the final whistle, moments after Maupay scored a 95th minute for Brighton.

A statement from the FA confirmed Guendouzi will face no further action.

“Matteo Geundouzi’s conduct during this incident was not seen by the match officials at the time, but it was subsequently reviewed by the VAR, so he will face no further action.”

Maupay had early knocked Bernd Leno off balance and played a big part in the Arsenal goalkeeper to seriously injuring his knee.

The Arsenal team were incensed by Maupay’s challenge and a melee broke out at the final whistle as Maupay and his Brighton teammates celebrated the huge upset win.

After the game Maupay was asked about the altercation with Guendouzi and he doubled down.

“Some of the Arsenal players need to learn humility. Especially one of them… They’d been talking a lot first half, second half when they were 1-0 up. They got what they deserved,” Maupay said.

Guendouzi and his Arsenal teammates are feeling the pressure after two defeats to open up the restart.

The Gunners lost to Man City and Brighton and have lost Pablo Mari, Granit Xhaka and Bernd Leno to injuries in the opening games, while David Luiz was sent off at Man City.

They face Southampton on Thursday (Start time, 1pm ET online via NBCSports.com) and Mikel Arteta must refocus and patch up his squad if they’re going to have any chance of finishing in fifth place and what could be a Champions League qualification spot if Man City’s European ban is upheld.

Emery pleased as youth helps Arsenal outlast Bournemouth, keep clean sheet

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Arsenal boss Unai Emery says it’s more than the clean sheet his side kept in a 1-0 defeat of Bournemouth, but how they looked in keeping it.

The Gunners copped just their second Premier League clean sheet of the season on Sunday. The first coming against sterile Newcastle, this one against lively Bournemouth felt a lot better.

[ RECAP: Arsenal 1-0 Bournemouth ]

That Arsenal did it after playing Thursday, and with four young players getting big minutes, means a lot to Emery.

“For me it’s one step more for the young players, for us,” he said. “We didn’t feel fear with that moment when the opposition was pushing us. Really I think the second half we can analyze and improve, we will do. In 90 minutes we deserved to win.”

Bukayo Saka (18) and Matteo Guendouzi (20) both started, with the latter going 90 minutes in a Man of the Match performance. Joe Willock (20) and Gabriel Martinelli (18) came into the game to see it out.

And the defense. David Luiz, Sokratis Papastathopoulos, and Sead Kolasinac have been a part of some horror shows this season, but — together with Calum Chambers — they were much better on Sunday.

“I remember the last matches we played here,” Emery said. “We can remember that we can improve with that spirit. The level in the Premier League is more than the cups but we played with one idea and one style. We want to use this way. An objective today was to win and then to take that way. The first half we did that.”

With Sheffield United, Crystal Palace, and Wolves next, the Gunners have winnable matches that will also test their resolve. Let’s see what lies ahead for the Top Four chasing Gunners.

Arsenal moves third with blanking of Bournemouth

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David Luiz‘s first half goal was all Arsenal needed thanks to a fine defensive day in a 1-0 defeat of Bournemouth at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Arsenal moves into third place, a point behind Man City’s 16, while Bournemouth dips 10th with 11 points.


Three things we learned

1. Pepe’s back in form: There have been fits and starts for the Ivorian at the Emirates Stadium, but Pepe’s industry, vision, and creativity were all on display on Sunday. That doesn’t mention his accuracy, with Pepe’s corner kick serving as the assist on David Luiz’s first half goal. Gabriel Martinelli replaced him on the hour mark.

2. Unai likes it clean: Stopping Bournemouth from writing a name on the score sheet is a lot more difficult than Arsenal’s only other PL clean sheet this season (Newcastle United). Remarkably, the clean sheet came with struggling center backs David Luiz and Sokratis Papastathopoulos, and Sead Kolasinac on the left. But Calum Chambers on the right had a fine day, too, while Matteo “Mr. Second Half” Guendouzi may have been the best player on the pitch

3. Cherries miss only good chance: Bournemouth were flummoxed when they had opportunities, putting only one of their eight shots on target. The most disappointing play came when Dominic Solanke set up Callum Wilson for a dribble through the 18, but the English striker tried to pass rather than side-foot toward the gaping frame. Selfish, Callum! Be selfish!

Man of the Match: Guendouzi — Everything but a goal for the Guendouzi, who was monstrous in possession, tackling, and dribbling. A wonderful day.


[ MORE: Premier League schedule ]

Arsenal was up for it early, winning a pair of corners through free-flowing football and seeing a vicious effort from Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang sail wide of the goal.

Luiz timed his near-post run to perfect in losing Callum Wilson to nod Nicolas Pepe‘s cross past Aaron Ramsdale. 1-0, 9′.

A bid to equalize via a Diego Rico free kick was headed wide by Dominic Solanke in the 18th.

Pepe missed with a curling effort from atop the box soon after the set piece. He then looked set for a VAR-awarded penalty following a collision with Rico, but the men with the screens thought it wasn’t a clear and obvious foul.

Callum Wilson dribbled three Arsenal defenders and goalkeeper Bernd Leno, but opted for a cutback rather than an acute effort on goal. The choice did not pay off.

Arsenal rallies for draw at Man United

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Arsenal teen Bukayo Saka cued Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang up for a second half equalizer as the Gunners rallied for a 1-1 draw with Manchester United at Old Trafford on Monday.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Scott McTominay scored for United, assisted by Marcus Rashford.

Arsenal moves into fourth with 12 points, while United moves into 10th with nine.


Three things we learned

1. McTominay flashes power: When you think of Manchester United midfielder Scott McTominay, it’s about intelligent movement, tidy passing, and willingness to get into a tackle (and also, maybe, his surprise emergence under Jose Mourinho). But the 22-year-old showed us something a bit different with his powerful 45th minute lash from outside the 18. What a hit, even with a slight deflection, and the moment this sleepy game required on Monday. The Scot would miss an open header later in the game, but the damage was done.

2. Pepe fails to build on performances: With a goal and 2 assists in his last four matches prior to Monday at Old Trafford, big money Arsenal signing Nicolas Pepe had a chance to cement his star status on Monday Night Football. He did not, missing the goal with one first half effort before hitting a tame ball directly to David De Gea before halftime.

3. The kid and the megastar team up again: Bukayo Saka is living the dream. Starting in Arsenal’s trident at age 18, Saka assisted prolific striker Aubameyang with a delightful through ball. As for Aubameyang, the Gabonese mega finisher has scored in every match but one this season. His seventh goal of the season was his 49th in 73 matches for the Gunners, a wonderful return for the longtime Borussia Dortmund man.

Man of the Match: Saka — The teen completed 90-plus percent of his passes on the day and won four of five attempted tackles in addition to his assist and two shots. Saka now has two goals and two assists in his first 270 minutes with the Gunners.


[ MORE: Premier League schedule ]

A rather lengthy feeling out period finally opened up for a chance when Andreas Pereira took it into his hands with along dribble to the precipice and a shot saved by Bernd Leno.

At the other end, Nicolas Pepe clunked an open shot from 16 yards well over the bar. He’d later cut a low shot that De Gea collected inside the six.

McTominay delivered an unfitting end to a sloppy first half with a beautiful strike for 1-0. A cut back to the top of the 18 allowed McTominay to rip a shot that relegated Leno to onlooker status.

David Luiz‘s long free kick led to an Arsenal corner, but De Gea sprung an effective corner that required a Matteo Guendouzi intervention.

Aubameyang beat De Gea moments later, but the linesman’s flag was inexplicably raised. VAR took a look and allowed the goal.

Young striker Bukayo Saka just missed in a bid to make it 2-1 within a minute of Aubameyang’s marker.

McTominay ran onto a free header outside the six, but popped his effort over the frame with a little over 20 minutes to play.

United kept pushing, and Maguire stepped well ahead of his center half position to force Leno into a save, which drew a corner. Alas, Maguire made a silly foul as Leno attempted to collect the corner, and the chance died at the doorstep.

Marcus Rashford presided over a stoppage time free kick, but was denied by the ever-impressive Leno. Overall, it was an improved defensive effort from the Gunners, who still needed their star goalkeeper to get the win.