Date:Tuesday September 3 2013
Far more than the need to 'make a statement', to use just one of the clichés that seem to accompany transfer windows nowadays, was the need to add the quality and numbers to a squad that for once hasn't been pillaged in the same transfer window. Ozil provides the quality and Sanogo, Flamini, Viviano and seemingly Bendtner the numbers.
The midfield looks very strong with Rosicky, Cazorla and Ozil genuinely class playmakers, Ramsey and Wilshere as fetchers and carriers with Arteta and Flamini the security men though that underplays the more flexible role that Arteta can provide. Sitting in the background but due back sometime before Xmas is Abou Diaby if we dare count him as a member of the squad. Still that's a strong enough midfield eight when all fit to think that Frimpong and Miyaichi won't see much playing time.
We know that the forwards have goals in them. At least Giroud, Walcott and Poldolski have all shown that. The Ox is also listed as a striker on the Arsenal first team squad sheet though still young and if he has goals in his game it might be a bit too soon for him to show it consistently. Sanogo is an unknown quantity but has shown the ability to score goals at a lower level. Bendtner has a scoring rate based on playing time that is comparable to RvP's but is a known quantity though what is known about him isn't exactly comforting. There is a very good footballer there if we can forget the man. But if he is to earn himself the contract elsewhere that he thinks he warrants, along with enough playing time to feature in the upcoming world cup for his national side, he has until January to show it if he wishes to move on then but certainly before next summer when his contract expires. Whether that is reassuring enough to consider him a useful squad member this season must be doubtful but again we look ok on numbers if everyone is fit.
Defence looks a bit shorter on numbers largely because we have only three designated centre backs but given the lack of success we have had with fourth choice centre backs in the past I can understand that Sagna looks at least as viable an option as another Squillaci or Sylvestre which seems to be what fourth choice gets. In terms of full back options, especially with the added utility of Flamini we look to have good options.
With the addition of Viviano we seem up to strength in goalkeepers but for once we need a bit of good fortune on the injury front. With Arteta, Chamberlain and Poldi quickly joining Diaby and Vermaelen on the sick list as the season got underway you'd hope we've already used up most of our share of injury misfortune for the season.
Our gross spend on transfers this season, despite atomising our previous individual transfer record, is actually less than we have spent in the previous two seasons and with the sales of Gervinho and Mannone our net spend is a reasonably modest £30m or so. We have used some of our reserves but there's plenty left to think that we are in a stronger position than most to take advantage of any value we can find in the next couple of transfer windows. Nonetheless it's telling that our total gross spend on transfers over the last 3 seasons, since Kroenke took control in fact, is as great as our total gross spend over the previous 10 seasons combined. The financial handbrake has clearly been taken off contrary to popular misconceptions surrounding Kroenke's ownership.
So what's the verdict? Did Gazidis and Wenger get it as right as they could? Did they excite you as Gazidis said we were able to?
Date:Tuesday September 3 2013
5 Things We Learned This Weekend (Monday December 9 2013)
Wenger Wants TV Ethics Committee (Sunday December 8 2013)
Barry: I Nearly Joined Arsenal (Sunday December 8 2013)
Arsenal v Everton Match Preview (Saturday December 7 2013)
Scout Report: Everton (Friday December 6 2013)
Stats: Arsenal v Hull City (Wednesday December 4 2013)
VIDEO: Arsenal Linked With Real Madrid Striker (Wednesday December 4 2013)
Arsenal v Hull City Match Preview (Wednesday December 4 2013)
Scout Report: Hull City (Tuesday December 3 2013)
What We Learned in the Premier League This Weekend (Monday December 2 2013)
|4. Man City||15||9||2||4||+26||29|
|Grizzly Report - Fulham v Villa
» Aston Villa : 09/12/2013 12:31:00
|Liverpool: Rodgers 'Delighted' With Hammers Win
» Liverpool : 09/12/2013 12:18:00
|Preview: Swansea -Vs- Hull City
» Hull City : 09/12/2013 11:03:00
|Happy Anniversary Alan
» Newcastle : 09/12/2013 10:54:00
|Praise For Ben Arfa
» Newcastle : 09/12/2013 10:28:00
|Man Utd Victory The Catalyst For Greater Things?
» Newcastle : 09/12/2013 09:56:00
» Spurs : 09/12/2013 09:17:00