I moan and groan like all Arsenal fans and God knows the club have afforded me plenty of chances to practice over the last 12 years. It’s been a gradual decline that even a blind man could see, the culmination of poor appointments, bad decisions, shocking leadership, and awful recruitment, that much can’t be denied.
Last season saw all the proverbial chickens come home to roost with players’ unrest, lack of depth in the squad, failure to replace Ozil, Ramsey, and Cazorla, and a general ‘sit tight’ mentality during a pandemic. This resulted in Arsenal’s season deteriorating dramatically to the point where then newly appointed WBA boss Sam Allardyce (now departed) regarded the Gunners as relegation rivals, which at that point wasn’t far wide of the mark, but Arteta somehow managed to get into 8th position at the close.
You expect the vultures to circle, it’s a result’s business, but the pessimism among Arsenal fans that’s beginning to swell for next season is becoming slightly concerning this early in the proceedings, even before a ball has been kicked. Arsenal’s implosion scenarios include relegation because of the news of the Gunners’ opening fixtures and it’s also been proposed that the club could be on the long winding road to ‘doing a Leeds.’
Firstly, with no additions and with the prospect of the current squad lining up against the top five, it’s understandable that the panic button looks tempting but to my knowledge, the window hasn’t closed and Arsenal are still active in the market.
Secondly, they could also complete stage two of their much-needed clear-out and allow the emergence of major talent from the academy as they did with Saka and Smith Rowe, and finally, if Arsenal secure four decent signings, especially in the form of a creative midfielder and partner for Thomas Partey, then the whole complexion of the season could change from the first kick-off.
Ok, some will say that Stan Kroenke will not invest or rubber stamp major signings, but even the Kroenkster must realise that his ownership requires major investment if the club is going to keep pace with the competition. In the likelihood, that investment isn’t forthcoming, surely Kroenke can see that Arsenal would eventually not even be considered for the future formation of a re-jigged ESL. He’s not that stupid, is he?
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No, no. I’m optimistic about the future which features a nucleus of bright young stars, and with a few key additions, Arsenal could be back in business for a top-four this season. That sounds like I lack ambition, far from it but you have to be realistic about achieving objectives and a top-four this term with attractive football would be most welcome.
Arsenal fans need to forget about last season, it was almost surreal in many respects, look at Liverpool’s campaign. As fans, we realised that breaking up this ordinary side wasn’t going to deliver European qualification and as we said on the podcast around January/February 6th or 7th, this was probably likely after the team suffered fluctuating form.
Those still calling for Arteta’s head should look at their neighbours to see how a Pochettino-less Spurs have fared. They soon discarded the ‘Special One’ and now can’t even fill the post. At this rate, Harry Redknapp could be back in the hot seat.
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- Three Major Signings Expected Within a Week; Arsenal Preparing For Major Changes to the Squad - 22/06/2021