They say change is the only constant thing in life and after a decade of tight-handedness with funds for transfer windows, Arsene Wenger’s dealings in the last two seasons breathe of a man who has turned a new leaf.
Indeed, it was not as though he never did not have a valid reason to insist of frugality and rightful spending; the club can now spend more on the market because the Emirates now belongs fully to Arsenal with most of the long-term debt serviced.
So Wenger has coughed up more than £120 million between the signing of Yaya Sanogo to Krystian Bielik, more than he had spent in the period of the trophy drought (which coincided with the debt years) and there was instant result the season past.
And adding to Bielik in the current transfer window, it looks more likely that not that Gabriel Paulista will be added to the ranks in what should be a strong looking, finally balanced, Arsenal squad. There have been other rumours of one other potential acquisition but a look through the Arsenal squad as it is now may suggest the manager, for the first time, may safely put his chequebook into the pocket to the applause of fans.
Against City at the Etihad, the bench had Szczesny, Chambers, Gibbs, Rosicky, Flamini, Walcott and Ozil on it, with neither Debuchy, Arteta, Wilshere nor Welbeck in the squad entirely. Perhaps only Chelsea and City can boast of such depth in the dugout and for once, maybe Arsenal have actually done the proper thing as far squad strengthening is concerned, especially if you compare the current state of affairs to some time when it used to be Djourou, Denislon, Arshavin, Gervinho in the starting team, with Yousii Banayoun sandwiched between Park and a faded Andrey Arshavin on the bench.
There is more competition for places in the current team now, so much that Sczcesny, Ozil and Walcott have to take the upcoming Brighton game to get their ways back to the team. What of Joel Campbell and Chuba Akpom? They are undeniably talented youngsters but they hardly can make the Match Day 18 at the moment, not to mention Podolski and Sanogo who have gone to get some match time.
For a Debuchy-Kos-Per-Gibbs back-four, Wenger can afford a Bellerin-Chambers-Paulista-Monreal replacement and there is enough in the midfield to ensure that Abou Diaby is not missed.
Cazorla and Ozil are fighting for one spot while the returning Gnabry will battle Walcott, Chamberlain and Alexis for a place on the attacking wings. The Giroud/Welbeck competition is more straightforward at the moment with the England striker injured but it will be fierce again when he returns.
All the players with whom the Gunners have been linked are well worth their onions but will a Grosskreutz really replace an in-form Coquelin at the moment while Flamini still can play or will Dybala do any better than Welbeck will when he come back? surely summer recruits will be needed when everyone would have accessed himself at the end of the season but for now, it looks a good squad to finish the challenges of the coming five months.
That is, after Paulista must have been signed. Don’t you sincerely agree?
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