It looks as if Gooners will have to put up with Manu Eboue for a good while yet after his agent confirmed that he is set to sign a new deal with the Gunners.
If we were to take a straw poll of the top three Arsenal players fans would be most comfortable to see leave, the Ivory Coast international would definitely be up there in the mix.
Here at Arsenal Addict, we’ve been fascinated by some of the comments by fellow Addicts recently, who describe Eboue, amongst other things, as one of the best right backs in the world when he helped the club to the Champions League final in 2006.
If that was the case, Arsène Wenger would hardly have gone out and signed Bacary Sagna for £8m, would he?
I felt sorry for Eboue when he was jeered by the home fans earlier this season. No player should have to go through that.
But the fact remains that Eboue simply does not fit as an Arsenal player. Weak in the tackle, poor at passing the ball and indifferent at tracking back, he has few redeeming qualities.
Gutted as I was to see us lose the CL final in Paris, I was pretty pissed off that Eboue had so blatantly dived to win us the free kick from which Sol Campbell gave us the lead.
Of course you have to take these things – and enough clubs have conned referees to our disadvantage in the past – but one of the strengths about Arsenal has always been their integrity.
This is the club who sacked George Graham without a second thought after he was found guilty of taking backhanders, despite leading the club to their most successful period since Herbert Chapman, George Allison and Tom Whittaker.
This was the club who decided, against all the precedents, to have a rematch in the FA Cup game against Sheffield United when our second goal came from a throw-in that the Blades were expecting us to give back to them following an injury.
“Same old Arsenal, always cheating”?? I don’t think so.
Sadly, Eboue has always been an exception to that rule, rolling over as if he has been shot, looking to fall rather than attack and offering precious few creative opportunities since moving into midfield.
If we sign Andrei Arshavin or someone else, I really don’t see where Eboue will fit into the team other than as a back-up defender.
The fact that we were offered the chance to sell him by Atletico Madrid and that the offer was turned down confirms how fond Wenger happens to be of Eboue.
It’s a shame that he doesn’t see the weaknesses and frailties the rest of us witness on a weekly basis and that we will have to put up with him for some time to come.