Strengthening in the right areas at Arsenal?
So far this summer, Arsenal have been linked with a host of potential talent, as transfer gossip columns remain rife with stories regarding every team in the Premier League and beyond. Having already signed Lukas Podolski and Olivier Giroud in the hope of strengthening attacking wise, whether or not the remaining transfer speculation will come to fruition is yet to be seen. There is however, a clear pattern, as Arsene Wenger looks to further strengthen his team’s ruthlessness going forward.
But in recent seasons, their wait for a trophy has been prolonged due to sloppy defensive displays and it is no secret that many Gunners’ fans have been anxious about defensive strengthening. Having conceded 44 goals last season, the worry is that without any further signings to add to the Arsenal back four, a similar figure will be conceded in the upcoming season, which will inevitably hinder their chances of success once again as they look to end their seven-year wait for a trophy.
Whilst many will be hopeful of fantastically entertaining matches, where the Gunners simply try and outscore their opponents, other teams will not carry the same levels of naivety and will all make the necessary changes across the pitch to achieve their best this season. A top heavy team may make for some intense football at the Emirates this season, but to end their daunting trophy drought the Gunners will need to add strength in depth in all areas of the pitch as their rivals continue to do so.
The rejuvenation of the Arsenal attack also leaves their midfield exposed, as Arsene Wenger has denied turning to the transfer market to buy a midfield enforcer. The optimism remains that Abou Diaby will stay fit, meaning Yan M’Vila is no longer linked with a move to North London. Diaby is all too injury prone, and the midfield as a whole fell victim to plenty of injuries at times last season. Remaining optimistic that fate will not repeat itself and choosing not to invest is a bold move, but does suggest an air of naivety that may prove costly.
Of the transfers that have already taken place at Arsenal, Olivier Giroud adds the kind of physicality that many believe has been missing from the Gunners’ setup. But without that added physical strength across the team, they may well find themselves falling into the same trap they have felt before; losing out to more physical sides in the division, such as Stoke, Newcastle or West Ham as they have done in the past.
Strengthening did need to take place in Arsenal’s attacking line, but the concentration on just that part of the team could prove costly and see Arsenal slump to another season without a trophy. With defensive frailties not being ironed out and midfield cover not catered for, the remainder of the summer transfer window needs to see Arsene Wenger invest in more strength in depth across all areas of the squad.