With a loss in their opening match, Arsenal F.C. are already reportedly in a "crisis", with fans turning on the team, and their reluctance to buy.
This left their squad paper thin going into the Aston Villa game, as well as their Champions League qualifier with Fenerbahce on Wednesday.
Things just haven't seemed to go Arsenal's way in the transfer window; with big name players such as Gonzalo Higuain, Steven Jovetic, and Bernard all electing for big money moves elsewhere. It can without a doubt be called a frustrating transfer window for Arsenal, but there is still a glimmer of hope left.
With the season underway and clubs able to determine their starting XIs, there is still time to buy. Arsene Wenger told the press after the match referring to the loss and the criticism of his lack of transfers, "You got what you wanted, you should be happy." Frustrating it may be, the longest serving Premier league manager does have a point.
Arsenal don't need much, just a couple of good quality signings. They have over the years built a strong English core around players such as Theo Walcott, Jack Wilshere, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Kieran Gibbs. While some of the big names may already be off the board, there are a few gems which could help cement Arsenals season:
Goalkeeper - Shay Given
Wojciech Szczęsny proved Wenger's goalkeeping fear on Saturday, with a sloppy performance gifting Villa their opening goal, and almost leading to an early second. He may have the potential, but he is not the finished article. Meanwhile on Saturday, in the other dugout, Shay Given warmed the bench watching Brad Guzan have a great match in his old #1 jersey. It's no surprise that Given, 37, is near the end of his career and looking for first team football. With Doncaster Rovers in the mix, a move to another top rated Premier League would be more beneficial to the Irishman.
Defence - Micah Richards, Ashley Williams
Arsenal's defence was in tatters on Saturday, with Thomas Vermaelen and Nacho Monreal both on the mend, Gibbs being forced out early with a head injury, and Laurent Koscielny receiving a harsh red was a disaster. Gabriel Agbonlahor was allowed to run just about anywhere he wanted, his storming first half run leading to the penalty and Villa's opening goal. Richards has fallen down the pecking order at Manchester City, and Ashley Williams has openly expressed his interest in playing Champions League football next season. Bringing in Williams adds leadership at the back, and may help to unleash the potential Ramsey has. While Richards is a utility defender able to play in the centre of defence, or contribute to the attack from the right flank, slotting balls to fellow Englishman Walcott.
Midfield - John Obi Mikel
With Mikel Arteta expected to miss some time though injury and Abou Diaby being perpetually on the treatment table, Arsenal need that holding midfielder who can allow Wilshere to push up the field and use his energy to help create an attack. Obi Mikel, another player linked with the Rafa Benitez revolution at Napoli, seems to be out of José Mourinho's plans at Chelsea. He's the type of ball winner Arsenal have been trying to find since letting Alex Song leave for Barcelona. The prospect of staying in London may be a more attractive option to the Nigerian star, keeping his mind off relocating and instead on football. Besides, Arsenal must want a little revenge for Napoli's poaching of Higuain.
Attack - Wayne Rooney, Bafetimbi Gomis
The big area where supporters want Arsenal to buy is a striker. Arsenal's favourite scoreline of 1-0 is turning into a bit of a headache, and the team feels they need more goals than Olivier Giroud can provide. Rooney may be on his way to Chelsea, but with the Luis Suarez deal deemed impossible, Wenger's eyes have reportedly wandered back to the want-away hitman. Having built the strong English core of Arsenal, the once England captain would be the perfect fit. He's played with the likes of Walcott, Wilshere, Gibbs, and Oxlade-Chamberlain at international level, so fitting in at club level would be a lot more simple. But the £40million plus price tag has Arsenal fans worried Wenger won't fork out the cash. With any luck the Robin Van Persie deal last year could be used as a makeweight, convincing Manchester United to sell, while facilitating a smooth transfer process.
A cheaper option in attack, Gomis recently had his proposed move to Newcastle fall through. He's available and affordable. His goalscoring record for Lyon is very positive, as well as the potential link up play with fellow French striker Giroud. A successful strike partnership can be just as deadly as that lone big name striker. Gomis could be pursued to come work for the legendary French coach, who has turned the likes of Thierry Henry and Patrick Vieira into French superstars.
The season may already have begun, but there is still a few weeks left before the transfer window closes. With Arsenal in the market to spend, transfer deadline deals are almost a certainty. The squad does need to strengthen, and there are players out there looking to move, even with Wenger's plan A not coming to fruition.
Expect to see Wenger bring in a few names before the window shuts, and hopefully he too can find that signing who turns the pretenders we saw at The Emirates on Saturday into the title contenders they once were.
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