You may be left in a state of shock if Mikel Arteta gets his way over the next two Arsenal seasons because the side will be almost unrecognizable to the one you see today. Much will depend on Arsenal’s ability to sell before buying but a certain amount of cash will be provided by the Kroenke’s, who have to some degree pushed their luck over the years by not refurbishing a tired team.
Don’t mention the summer ! and don’t talk to me about Aubameyang and Lacazette, the damage was done before they arrived at Arsenal. At the hands of the current board, its owner, the poisonous and loathsome Ivan Gazidis and Arsene Wenger.
Yes, Arsene Wenger ! Credit where credit is due, he made Arsenal an attractive global football club in his first ten years but after that the success dried up as the gunners skimped and went trawling for bargains.
At one point, Gazidis was no match for the Frenchman and if Wenger had insisted on buying big, the board would have backed him like Manchester United did with Alex Ferguson.
He once said he treated Arsenal’s cash as his own but he managed to squander millions on a series of no hopers and average players that were not even equal to those who departed.
You get what you pay for, but when Arsenal splashed the cash the quality was often extremely suspect. Xhaka, Mustafi, Elneny, Arshavin, Denilson, Gervinho, Jeffers and Santos, to name but a few, were never of the standard Arsenal needed.
Arteta came to Arsenal when they weren’t quite in a critical condition but they were in need of serious attention. He will know that they could have done so much more had they had quality in their squad.
He will have seen from the Manchester City bench how bad things were and that apart from the strikers, the team needed a complete rebuild.
Arteta has seen in training how limited the current Arsenal side is and it’s a miracle that he has managed to get a performance out of such a disjointed collection of talented individuals in such a short space of time.
Despite the assurances of the Spanish coach that he needs the majority of Arsenal players at his disposal, he’s just being diplomatic. There will be a host of departures split into two categories.
Those that need to go and those that want to jump ship. This upheaval will take at least two summer transfer windows before the real influence of Arteta can be felt and the Arsenal board may have to jiggle their accounts and produce the type of cash that they had no intention of spending.
January will prove how much the Arsenal owner is behind the former Manchester City assistant. He needs reinforcements just to stay where he is in the league, let alone to climb into the top four. The next few weeks are crucial for Arsenal in the short term but the journey is longer that perhaps anyone imagined.