Manchester United, Manchester City, Bayern Munich and even West Ham United all completed transfers before the end of deadline day that should be having fans of Arsenal fuming at the actions of Arsene Wenger.
Although it may be a bit hasty to describe the Gunners’ form as the advent of a full-blown crisis, the 2-0 defeat at Borussia Dortmund was damaging not just in numbers, two wins in seven matches this season, but the manner of it was a reminder of long-standing shortcomings that were not addressed.
Rivals can do it
Premier League rivals at Old Trafford, Etihad Stadium and European giants Bayern Munich all demonstrated to the Emirates Stadium boss that what he so needed was available, yet decided against going out and getting it – even QPR could do it.
Mikel Arteta made his first start against Dortmund since picking up an ankle injury in the first leg of the Champions League qualification playoff against Besiktas, and the poor guy couldn’t have had a more torrid time.
Arsenal’s club captain could do little more than watch as Jurgen Klopp’s batch of speedy forwards and midfielders streamed past him after the Gunners lost the ball in midfield for the umpteenth time.
Arteta is the deepest lying midfielder and so is supposed to be the last screen in front of the back four, but he is just not quick enough to react to a breakaway effectively enough against the best opposition.
Wenger was warned
It’s not like the signs weren’t there last season, so Arsenal fans will have been watching in disbelief as the transfer deadline ticked away and no reinforcements were secured in that position – defence was also an issue, but that’s for another day.
Disbelief could well turn to fury among Gooners when faced with certain defensive midfield deals that went ahead this summer, for transfer fees that were easily in the Emirates Stadium club’s price range.
GMS have picked out five of them and all you need to do to find out who they are is click the ‘begin slideshow’ button below…