Former Arsenal defender Frank McLintock has slammed Arsene Wenger’s recent transfer business, and compared his signings to that of his earlier years.
The Gunners have fallen swiftly out the title race this season, and are in danger of missing out on the top four for the first time in two decades.
Arsene Wenger is now being blamed for our recent failures, citing the manager’s transfer activity as reason for our fall from grace.
“When I look at some of the buys like Calum Chambers, Shkodran Mustafi, Gabriel Paulista and Granit Xhaka, they’re all decent players,” McLintock said.
“I’m not trying to knock them too much – but they are certainly not the standard that you would expect Arsenal to go for.
“When we first learned they would move from Highbury to the Emirates we were told it was so the club could compete with the best teams in the world.
“But they’re miles away from that. It’s just a fallacy.
“It looks like a business organisation, they’re going to get a lot more money out of it, don’t rock the boat too much.
“They’ve spent decent money in the last two seasons, but the buys have been very poor.
“When I used to watch Arsenal when Wenger first came, the team was fantastic.
“He started with six or seven terrific players and he added to it with [Mark] Overmars and [Thierry] Henry – I could go on and on.
“He did that for 10 years and then they moved the stadium. He was limited then in what he could do but he still kept us in the top four.
“You have to give him huge credit for that – but in the last three years when the money has been there, it’s not been good enough.”
Football has changed in a big way from when Wenger first took over the role, with Alan Shearer being the world’s most expensive football at £15 Million back then. That fee is regularly usurped nowadays, and the world record now sites at around six-times that figure.
Granit Xhaka and Shkodran Mustafi are being questioned here, but to be fair, they have shown glimpses of their talent, and the defender’s immediate arrival started a long unbeaten run.
The reality is that many of our problems in the market is the amount of strong rivals coming in for players, with as many as six clubs vying to win the Premier League this term, all with money to splash.
Is Mclintock completely right on his opinion? Do some allowances need to be made? Will Xhaka and Mustafi prove to be top players?