Ahead of the eagerly anticipated game against Arsenal this weekend, Old Trafford Faithful caught up with Jay Bayford, who runs the latest Arsenal blog on the net, Gunner Pride. He answered a few of our questions, including what he makes of RvP signing for United amongst other things.
Jordan@Old Trafford Faithful: There is only one place we can start really, Robin van Persie, what do you make of him signing for United?
Jay (Gunner Pride): Hi there Jordan. I think towards the end of the transfer window, it was inevitable he was heading for the door but his switch to United really shocked me. I was convinced Juventus would snap him up and I think most fans would have preferred that move. Moving to Manchester United has lost him a lot of fans and I can’t really blame them. I still like him but it’s difficult to watch him in a United shirt.
Jordan: Are you pleased with your transfer activity this summer?
Jay: It was looking good until the RvP departure. Lukas Podolski was signed before the end of last season that looks a good transfer. Olivier Giroud still has to find his feet and was never going to be the next Van Persie. Santi Cazorla looks a real buy though! I still don’t understand the Song sale. We miss him more than Robin.
Jordan: What would have to happen this season for you to consider it a
Jay: It’s a difficult one really. Arsenal fans are dying to lift a trophy and so I guess that would be a successful season but winning the League Cup and not finishing in a Champions League spot isn’t a good position. Just look at Liverpool. I think Champions League qualification aswell as a trophy would be considered successful.
Jordan: Who do you see as your most influential player this campaign?
Jay: I’m torn between 3. Santi Cazorla has been our most influential player so far. He has been a fantastic addition and has carried the team at times. Theo Walcott has the potential to be a star this season. He has 7 goals from 13 games (9 as a sub). That’s an astonishing record and if he is given the striker role he craves he could add more. His pace is uncatchable and his finishing has improved. Then there’s the returning Jack Wilshere. I was cautious of fans expecting too much but he was easily our best player against QPR and could carry that form on.
Jordan: What do you make of fans calling for Arsene Wengers head? Do you
still think he is the right man for the job?
Jay: There is no-one more suited to the job than Arsene! I understand the fan’s fustration but half the problem is the board. Wenger has his hands tied and is still doing a good job. When he goes it will be a case of you don’t know what you have until it’s gone. In Arsene I Believe!!
Jordan: Jack Wilshere is back in the first team after almost 18 months out,
do you think he will start on Saturday?
Jay: I didn’t expect to start against QPR but he did. He wasn’t risked in the League Cup clash with Reading and I think that’s because Wenger wanted him for Old Trafford. If we are to win we will need him! His creativity was our best attribute.
Jordan: If you could take one United player for your team, who would you take and why?
Jay: I’d take RvP back! The guy has over 100 goals for Arsenal, is a class act and has been my favourite player for several seasons. He has so much talent and was influential for us last year. I know that may upset a lot of Arsenal fans but they guy was great for us and I’d encourage everyone to remember the good times as there was a lot.
Jordan: What score do you think it’ll be this weekend?
Jay: It’s tough because I can see us winning. Despite our dogged performances of late, I think our stunning win over Reading will really lift us but we always struggle against United. I’m going for a 3-2 victory. Optimistic maybe but possible. It definitely won’t be 8-2 lol.
Jordan: I’ll go for 3-1 United, with RvP coming back to haunt Arsenal, cheers Jay!