Spending key to Arsenal revival

by Martin Lindsay

Friday, May 13th, 2011

It was only seven years ago that ‘The Invincibles’ of Arsenal achieved the impossible by lifting the Premier League title without loss. A squad littered with world class names boasting experience and promising youngsters, they cast aside all before them on route to achieving football’s greatest success in recent history.

Players such as Thierry Henry, Robert Pires, Dennis Bergkamp, Martin Keown and Patrick Vieira provided a perfect mix of flair and endeavour that proved the catalyst for Arsenal to gain the achievements of no other side since Preston North End’s unbeaten campaign in 1889.

That Arsenal side was the complete package; however after departures of such names and little in the way of replacements, the Gunners have endured a frustrating few years. Despite playing some of the finest football in Europe this season, Wenger’s current side lacks a physical edge, contributing to their six year trophy drought.

After falling at the final hurdle in the title race again the time has surely come for Wenger to seriously make his mark on the transfer market. An overhaul is not the requirement, but shrewd investment in key areas will allow Arsenal to once again become a recognised force with the very elite of English football.

On the morning of the Carling Cup final in February, Wenger’s side were favourites to lift what could have proved to be the first of four trophies this season – three months on and his team remain trophy-less, as their campaign continues to peter out in forgettable fashion.

Losing leads to Liverpool and Tottenham, as well as recent defeats at Bolton and Stoke is stark evidence that this Arsenal side lacks the knockout blow when it comes to the business end of the season.

Manchester United are renowned for their sprint finishes to a Premiership campaign, while Chelsea are enjoying similar form that saw them race to the top of the table at the start of the season. Arsenal, though, have faltered when it mattered most, with former players and fans alike begging for that crucial investment.

An established goalkeeper and central defender will be at the top of Wenger’s wish list, with recent seasons proving youngsters alone can only get you so far. An aggressive midfielder in the mould of Vieira would also be a dream capture, but with such signatures requiring major expenditure, will this summer see a change in Wenger’s cautious recruitment policy?

The Arsenal boss spent approximately £8m on French defender Laurent Koscielny last summer, and although he has performed well at times this season, a key defensive capture is vital to Arsenal if they want to mount a serious title challenge.

You only have to look at the Gunners’ rivals to see that if you spend big then you inevitably reap the rewards. If Arsenal choose to significantly spend this summer they will have a squad capable of ending their potential seven year wait for silverware. However, if they opt against dealing with the elite in the transfer market it will prove to be another season of ‘what could have been’ for North London’s sleeping giants.

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  • Wengers Neighbor

    mail this to Wenger

  • http://www.ukfootballfinder.co.uk Mystical Mike

    Groundhog day. Save this blog for the next few years!

  • CrunchTime

    Wenger OUT!

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