Emery may not have to spend as much as first thought in the transfer window. Reports that Arsenal have just £40m to spend in the transfer window hasn’t gone down well with fans but that figure could grow substantially with player sales and the earnings from the Europa league, which could make the end figure nearer the £100m mark.
Unai Emery may not need the entire contents of his war chest and potentially could save Arsenal £70m with assets already at his disposal.
Emery on transfer plans: "We have to keep taking steps forward and the club is working towards that. There could be a lot of movement in terms of signings and departures or there could be a little, but first of all I believe there is a good base for the team already here." #AFC pic.twitter.com/lBlcIFLQLW
— ArsenalLatest™ (@ArsenalLatest) May 19, 2019
It’s widely recognised that the Spaniard needs new additions, especially on the flanks. He desperately needs a creative midfielder that can pull the strings and supply the gunners two strikers but he also requires a strong and composed central defender.
All this would mean a net spend of well over what Arsenal have in reserve but there is a way that Emery can box clever and utilise what he has, whilst adding what he needs.
Reiss Nelson and Bukayo Saka, are an exciting duo and it won’t be long before they play a part in the Arsenal first team, however, they may be required before they are generally deemed ready. I’d be tempted to promote the pair to provide the width and service that Aubameyang and Lacazette are crying out for.
The move would be an exciting step, with the return of Hector Bellerin and the emergence of Ainsley Maitland-Niles, Arsenal look fairly formidable in attack. The biggest problem of all is solving the central defensive pairing and I fully expect Emery to buy a well regarded, competent player that has genuine quality.
Rob Holding will return, Sokratis and Mavropanos are also in the mix for Arsenal but Emery will surely have noted Krystian Bielik’s solid performances for newly promoted Charlton, which have captured the imagination.
If we’re casting a critical eye over Bielik’s possible inclusion in the Arsenal first team, it could be pointed out that Charlton were battling to get out of league one and into the Championship and that the opposition are not exactly the same as at premiership level.
However, the flip side to that argument is that it is a notoriously difficult league to escape and its only through dogged defensive performances that Charlton got to the play offs. Is he worth a shot ? Definitely, perhaps with Holding as his long term partner and next year could be a breakthrough season if Arsenal can’t attract the calibre of defender they need.
I think Reiss Nelson’s loan spell has been a huge success. When he’s featured, he’s been fantastic. However, his experiences regarding injuries & attitude off the field will be important in the long run. He’ll be a huge boost to the squad, especially given our limited budget.
— Patrick Timmons (@PatrickTimmons1) May 18, 2019
Calum Chambers could also be considered for a regular slot next season by Arsenal but not as a central defender. Chambers was drafted in to Fulham’s midfield as a defensive shield for a flimsy backline and although the Cottagers got relegated, he received rave reviews, even becoming their player of the season in the process. It’s rare that a loanee steals that type of accolade.
Arsenal have developing options in the middle with the likes of Joe Willock and Emile Smith Rowe. They will be gradually introduced over the next two of three seasons but it is possible that Smith Rowe will spend at least another term on loan.
So,in theory, Emery could settle for just two quality purchases in the middle and at the back, but he is going to lose experienced squad players and a number of established first team players such as Welbeck, Mkhitaryan, Monreal, Koscielny, Elneny, Mustafi, Lichtsteiner and Jenkinson.
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This is when you realise the complexity of the task ahead but again, Emery may have to utilise existing resources whilst being savvy in the transfer market for Arsenal, even considering players on free transfers to bulk up the bench. This type of transformation takes place over two or three transfer windows, similar to the way Manchester City and Liverpool had to reinvest.
Wow! Absolute honour to be voted Player of the Season! I say this with the biggest smile on my face, thank you! Wish everyone at @FulhamFC the very best for next season. It would be great to see you in the Premier League soon! #COYW pic.twitter.com/uka4zsbebP
— Calum Chambers (@CalumChambers95) May 25, 2019
It’s a balancing act for the Arsenal coach, some of his acquisitions may raise eyebrows but with so much to improve on and with limited resources, Emery will need to be incredibly imaginative and resourceful. Next season will inevitably be his marker and not only determine Arsenal’s ability to compete and move forward but also Emery’s immediate future.
It’s preposterous to think that he would be balancing on a knife edge after such a short spell in charge but progress will have to seen and measured in the eyes of the Arsenal fans, if not the boards.