While Arsenal fans, or a growing portion of them at least, have been moaning for years about the club’s lack of ambition and Arsene Wenger having lost his edge, we have still been seen my most rivals as a real threat and by players as a good or at least a decent option to sign for.
I get the impression, however, that those days are over and that every other club, player and manager in the Premier League and even across Europe is now seeing Arsenal and Wenger in a different light. They smell blood and it is not in the cut and thrust and fiercely competitive nature of modern football to not exploit any weakness.
This was highlighted for me this week when Jonny Evans reportedly turned down the possibility of signing for Arsenal, something he would surely have jumped at the chance of doing when Man United sold him to West Brom a few years back. An even bigger and more worrying sign, for me, was the fact that Man City are refusing to consider letting Raheem Sterling come to north London as part of the transfer deal that would take Alexis Sanchez to the Etihad, despite the fact that Guardiola really wants him.
Can this be because they know we have no bargaining power left and will sell our striker to them anyway. Are the Gunners really there for all the other clubs to take aim at now?