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Arsenal Move Ever Closer to £11m Signing that is Essential to End Silverware Drought

by Alan Smith's Forehead

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Football - Manchester City v SV Hamburg UEFA Cup Quarter Final Second Leg - The City of Manchester Stadium, Manchester, England - 16/4/09..Manchester City's Shay Given looks dejected Photo via Newscom

Shay Given gets go-ahead for Arsenal transfer from Roberto Mancini
Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini has revealed he will allow Shay Given to leave the club, clearing the way for a permanent transfer to Arsenal.

Shay Given has been told by Roberto Mancini he can leave Manchester City
Arsenal are on the lookout for a new goalkeeper to replace error-prone Manuel Almunia this season, with speculation growing that Arsene Wenger prefers Given to his other top target – Fulham’s Mark Schwarzer.
And Mancini, speaking ahead of his side’s Europa League qualifier against FC Timisoara on Thursday, has admitted he will not stand in Given’s way if the 34-year-old demands a move after being demoted to the bench in favour of 23-year-old England international Joe Hart.

“I hope he can stay,” said Mancini.
“But I respect his decision if he wants to leave.” (Metro)

I am not one of those Arsenal fans who likes to moan for the sake of it. I tend to give people the benefit of the doubt, far far too often. Manuel Almunia has run out of second chances and Lukasz Fabianski is a reckless second rate keeper in my view. If Shay Given has been given the all clear to leave Manchester City then can anyone give me one good reason why Wenger shouldn’t make a bid right now for his services?

I know we are after Mark Schwarzer but clearly Given is a better alternative, albeit more expensive he is by far the better of the two and has three years on the Aussie to boot.

There is some talk that City may be unwilling to sell to a club they consider a direct rival for a top four spot but that would seem odd as we were willing to hand them Kolo Toure and Emmanuel Paymemore and either way if we put in a decent bid for the £11m rated Irishman and he then wants to join us, as opposed to going elsewhere, then Mancini will have a tough decision on his hands.

Either way we simply must get a new keeper before the transfer window shuts or we may as well just forget about the new season. Almunia didn’t drop a clanger at Anfield but arguably he should still have stopped Ngog’s shot and didn’t look to confident on crosses, no surprise there.

As a season ticket holder for the best part of two decades, this is the first time we have been stuck with such appalling choices for custodians and it simply does not bode well. If you pick a goalie who doesn’t have the confidence of his defenders then they too will start to make silly mistakes.

Its almost worth chucking Vito Mannone or Wojciech Szczesny in at the deep end rather than trusting the two clowns currently vying for the number one spot.

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