Reading the headline to this, I can imagine a number of you thinking that it might be hugely exaggerated but there are five things that the Gunners need to address before the transfer window opens.
1. The Ownership’s Intent
Arsenal have left themselves with a multitude of issues that have remained unresolved for several years and those failures now need immediate attention. The Gunners need to buy at least three quality players in the upcoming transfer window who can hit the ground running, who can add resilience to defence and creativity in attack.
No more making do, no more shopping for bargains, no more loans thanks very much! If the gunners are serious about competing, then Stan Kroenke and KSE need to right the wrongs of the past and give Mikel Arteta their full support even in these uncertain times.
Should Arsenal fail to do so, then every season will be a struggle to even make the top four with the competition becoming stronger by reinforcing in the summer months. Arteta said the gap between the top sides is enormous and although he has managed to snatch two impressive victories against Liverpool and Manchester City, he needs to build a team that has the ability not just to survive.
KSE need to prove their commitment and intent. Are they interested in achieving success or are they just using the club as a commercial vehicle? Now’s the time to put up or give up!
To get back on terms with the majority of clubs at the top of the Premier League, Arsenal will need around £150m. It could be in structured payments but also, in monies generated by sales which could offset the cost of new players. For too long now, Arsenal have been trying to fashion diamonds from horse shit and there comes a time when you need quality rather than potential.
How many years did we hear “It’s a young side, we look forward to next season”, but that season of success never arrived and the cycle repeated itself year after year until we found ourselves so far divorced from the top clubs that major surgery was required. Arsenal are now lumped in with the likes of Sheffield United, Leicester, Wolves and Burnley and if you think that’s acceptable, then you are part of the problem.
3. The Manager’s Choice
There’s no doubt that Unai Emery was unable to bring in the players he wanted because Raul Sanllehi and Sven Mislintat controlled the transfers in and out of the club. That needs to stop. We’ve even heard the same names this season as last, which suggests nothing has changed.
Arteta needs to be able to bring in his own type of players, ones that he believes can execute his plans and fill the roles he thinks he needs. What’s the point of bringing in personnel that the coach doesn’t want, that he doesn’t believe in.
It undermines what Arteta is trying to achieve at the Emirates and will make it harder to mould the side he envisages in the style he wants to play. The bottom line is that Arteta needs the final say, it’s his head on the block and reputation that’s on the line.
4. Close Deals Quickly
Arsenal have a habit of being slow in negotiating a deal for targets which allows other clubs to compete. The club has lost out on players in the past because it has a habit of dawdling, that mentality needs to change.
Once Arteta has identified his targets, which he has apparently done already, Arsenal needs to close the deals quickly. They need to go into negotiations with a plan and secure an agreement without haggling or trying to get the best deal in the history of the Premier League. When asked about his transfer plans, Arteta told beIN Sports:
“We have to assess that. I am very clear of what we need,”
I’m not saying that Arsenal have to pay excessive prices but the going rate is the going rate and under the current circumstances, unrealistic bids are not going to bag players which Arsenal need.
5. Get Rid Of The Driftwood
Over the years, Arsenal’s policy of going cheap and making do has cost them dearly. Arsenal haven’t saved themselves money, in fact, they’ve wasted it. For example, Arsenal have 8 centre-backs at their disposal and a host of fringe players.
A major clear out in the summer is required to reduce the wage bill but also to improve the overall quality of the squad. There are players at the Emirates that aren’t good enough or lack the necessary consistency to compete in the Premier League.
Of course, it won’t all happen at once but the Gunners could easily ship out six players this summer transfer window and use those funds to rebuild. It’s hardly rocket science but Arsenal’s business model needs to change again especially in regards to transfers. Let’s hope they are all on the same page.