Football

Arsenal must spend big this summer

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Wenger must splash the cash during the summer (©GettyImages)
Wenger must splash the cash during the summer (©GettyImages).

Arsenal ended 2012/13 securing fourth spot in the Premier League and as a result Champions League qualification. 

The relief on the faces of the manager and his players after the game reflected the tough season that Arsenal had been embroiled in - being typified by ecstasy and disappointment. 

If one thing is clear Arsenal have to dig deep in the transfer window this summer and make sure the season does not become characterised by failures and struggles. 

They only just made it past Tottenham into fourth spot and will be well aware that if they don’t strengthen they will be caught up. The biggest problem for Arsene Wenger is where to start? 

It can be argued that each position is vulnerable to injury and players who either do not possess great ability or at times lack consistency. 

The three positions that Arsenal need to address in the summer transfer window; a striker, a defensive midfielder and a goalkeeper.

Arsenal are in dire need of a striker who scores a consistent amount of goals by converting the opportunities that the likes of Santi Carzola will supply. 

By selling a world-class striker in Robin Van Persie they did not replace the ingenuity of his creativity and ability to convert goalscoring chances. Olivier Giroud has at times had some good moments this season but he is hardly a world-class finisher and certainly not a striker which will fire  Arsenal to the top of the league or to be able to challenge in Europe. Likewise Lukas Podolski has had some fine moments but he hasn’t shown great consistency in addition to him being better at playing as a wing forward than in the centre of the striking area. 

Theo Walcott, as well is at times great and at times very poor. It seems Arsenal need a striker who is actually a striker. Not a converted winger or support striker but an actual centre forward who relishes the opportunities that the likes of Walcott, Carzola and Podolski can supply him with.

Looking at the Arsenal squad they are lucky in that they have midfielders in abundance. Abou Diaby, Mikel Arteta, Jack Wilshere, Aaron Ramsey and Santi Carzola all like to play through the middle. 

However, none of these players are purely defensive minded, apart from Diaby. Diaby was injured until Christmas and cannot be relied upon to be a permanent fixture in the season due to his injury prone nature. 

For much of last season Arteta excelled in the anchor role at Arsenal but it would suit him and the Arsenal team if Arteta, Wilshere and Ramsey have a license to go forward and execute their expertise as box-to-box players.

If Arsenal can sign a defensive midfielder this summer then Arsenal will be a team that will  be more solid and the other players will benefit greatly from this.

Arsenal have three Goalkeepers Wojciech Szczęsny, Lukasz Fabianski and Vito Mannonne. 

Szczesny is seen as the first-team goalkeeper but Fabianski also gets his fair share of opportunities. Even Mannonne made appearances this season for Arsenal. 

It is quite rare for a big team in the Premier League to use three goalkeepers. Top teams need a consistent goalkeeper, one who has great ability but equally has a commanding presence and a fully developed relationship between himself and his defence. 

Swapping and changing the goalkeeper prevents this process from happening.  David De Gea at Manchester United has been criticised but now he is looking strong and he has been given a first-team berth in the squad. 

Look at Chelsea, Petr Cech is a number one pick, likewise Pepe Reina at Liverpool and now Hugo Lloris at Tottenham. 

Arsenal need to buy an experienced goalkeeper to provide competition so that Wenger knows exactly who his best goalkeeper is and when he does find out he needs to keep that goalkeeper in the team. The best teams work from the back, start with the goalkeeper Wenger.

If Arsenal can address these areas then they could possibly go from strength to strength and finally challenge for the Premier League trophy again.

 

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Topics:
Football
Premier League
Arsenal
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