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TACKLE KEOWN LIVE: Can Ozil inspire Arsenal title charge? Why did United fail in the transfer window?

John Brennan asks: ‘I’m an Evertonian and would be interested in what you think of EFC’s new signings, and the departures of Fellaini and Anichebe. Does it strengthen or weaken Everton? I’m 60 now, so time is getting short if we are to be champions again!’

AnswerLooking at who came in, one area of concern is Martinez has gone to Wigan three times – for James McCarthy, Arouna Kone and, Antolin Alcaraz – and this was a side that was relegated last season.

Kone is a good player, but I’m not so sure about Alcaraz, while James McCarthy has played a lot of games for Wigan, so Roberto will know all about him. £13million is an awful lot of money, though.

It’s funny – when David Moyes was the manager of Everton he hardly made a signing. It would be one each season and the Evertonians would be unhappy because they hadn’t seen any activity.

This summer has seen a significant change in the club’s approach but it’s very Wigan-weighted. They have been affected more than anyone else by the transfer window. They need to be ruthless now.

I do like Romelu Lukaku, though: I think he’s an outstanding player – and he certainly was in a West Brom shirt on loan from Chelsea last season. Swapping him with Victor Anichebe is good business.

Gareth Barry’s another good acquisition: he’s low maintenance and he’ll understand the mentality of the a big club like Everton.

(James McCarthy: I have to prove I’m worthy at Everton – CLICK HERE to read more)


World class: Arsenal’s new signing Mesut Ozil

‘Arsenal have a great acquisition in Mesut Ozil, the marquee signing all Arsenal fans have been clamouring for, but why did we not strengthen in some of the other areas, such as defence, striker and/or defensive midfield?’ – Si Palmer from Newport

AnswerThat’s a question for the manager, but I think what Wenger’s been talking about is this ‘super player’. That’s what he wanted this summer, and that’s the way forward for the football club now.

It reminds me of the Dennis Bergkamp situation. You saw the grin on Theo Walcott’s face and it reminded me of Ian Wright skipping down the corridor when Bergkamp signed. That one signing will take us to another level.

I do think Arsenal needed to buy a striker, but I don’t think there’s a problem in central defence.

I think there’s a question mark over the goalkeeper but Emiliano Viviano’s going to put him under pressure, which is good news for Arsenal.

I think, in signing Flamini, they’ve taken care of defensive midfield. He allowed Fabregas to go forward and attack in his last season at the club.

His input was often missed, but not by me: I think there’s a real responsibility in his play. Somebody has to fill in those gaps when Arsenal flood forward and he’s someone who is happy to do that.

(Wenger will now try to tie down his stars on new deal – CLICK HERE to read more)

Gary Russell (@Gaddge26m) asks via #tacklekeown on Twitter: ‘I think this is the weakest England side I’ve seen in years and Roy Hodgson is not the right man to lead them. What do you think, Martin?’

AnswerControversial! I don’t necessarily agree this is the weakest in years. Our midfield is as strong as I can remember. We’ve got two world-class left backs now.

I think we’ve conceded a lot of goals recently, which is a concern – certainly from set pieces, as we saw against Scotland – but we’ve got a relatively new partnership in that area, since the era of Ferdinand and Terry.

I think Cahill will dominate in that position for many years to come.

But you’ve got to have world-class strikers to win World Cups – and that’s an area we can’t afford to be missing our best players.

(CLICK HERE for Sportsmail’s verrdict on whether England can be World Cup contenders in 2022)

Good afternoon… we have our first question! Darren in Weybridge asks: ‘What do you think about Rooney not playing for England because of a cut. It didn’t stop Terry Butcher and I don’t suppose it would have stopped you. Are modern players just too mollycoddled?’

AnswerIt’s a difficult one. I don’t think Wayne is the sort of person to pull out unless it was something very serious.

We’ve only seen a snapshot of the injury: it’s in a very awkward place and it would mean he couldn’t head the ball. If he can’t do that then he’s not fit to play.

It’s different when you get a gash in a game and the adrenaline’s flowing.

It seems to fuel you a little bit more, but when you see the wound and it becomes a bit sensitive to the touch it’s a different story. When you can’t the ball I can understand why he’s not playing.

I remember having to come off with a fracture of the nose. It was so painful – I couldn’t play with it. I damaged my right eye because I suffered a detached retina, too, because somebody elbowed me in the eye socket.

We have to think of the player’s health: there are a lot of players who wouldn’t play with that. It’s now the norm for players not to come back on the pitch when the‘ve got a head wound. You can’t play on with blood now so a quick decision has to be made. It’s more to do with that, than the players being mollycoddled.

(Click here to read the latest on Rooney) 




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