Liverpool legend Jamie Carragher has never been one to mince his words concerning rival Premier League clubs, but his most recent comments might well have evoked a fresh sort of ire from Arsenal fans.
Despite the fact that Arsene Wenger sanctioned a hearty spending spree this summer, one which saw talents such as Danny Welbeck and Alexis Sanchez arrive at the Emirates Stadium, Carragher took the time to lambast the Gunners’ title credentials, and even went as far as to suggest that they have slipped further behind the likes of Chelsea with regards to their ambitions.
The comments will likely sting Arsenal fans who, for the first time in a number of years, have taken confidence in their club's forays into the transfer window prior to the start of a new campaign.
On top of Sanchez and Welbeck the exciting young Calum Chambers arrived from Southampton, Mathieu Debuchy was purchased as a direct replacement for the departing Bacary Sagna and David Ospina is now in the picture to contest Wojciech Szczesny's claim for the No.1 jersey.
Yet Carragher has questioned the mental strength of Wenger’s charges, and said that he fancied City to win the fixture that ended as a 2-2 draw at the Emirates this past weekend.
The injury issues
But pushing the negativity brought forth by legends of rival clubs aside, there’s another issue which is likely to be playing more upon the mind of the Arsenal boss. Injuries have ravaged his squad ahead of a key Champions League clash away at Borussia Dortmund, and it looks as though the green-gilled Hector Bellerin is to start at right-back.
Chambers is said to be suffering from tonsillitis, which adds him to the list of players who are either doubts or completely ruled out. Nacho Monreal did not travel with the squad to Germany, whilst Debuchy is out for two months with damaged ankle ligaments.
This compiles the misery felt by the injury to Olivier Giroud, although Wenger appears confident that his side can overcome the obstacles and get a positive result.
The Frenchman has today hit back at he naysayers who doubt Arsenal can come away from the Signal Iduna Park with any points, suggesting that he has complete faith that he has enough squad depth to cover for the losses in personnel he has sustained in the build up to the game.