Analysis – How far realistically are Arsenal away from being a title-winning side?

When can Arsenal challenge for the PL title again? by AndersS

I am sure, we are all hoping it is next season, but how many of us, think it is realistic? I don’t.

We haven’t really challenged for the title in many years.Although, we finished 2nd to Leicester 6-7 years ago, we weren’t really challenging in the run in. The only challengers were actually Spurs, but they finished with only 2 points in their last 4 games, which meant we narrowly beat them to second place. The last time we finished above them in the league.

So it is even longer ago that we actually challenged.

 Barring a miracle, like Leicester, to build a serious title challenge, obviously takes a team with high-quality players.

I would say, at least the starting 11 all need to have individual qualities close to the highest level. There are of course often some stand-out stars like De Bruyne at City, but the rest of the team will have to be high quality as well, and with no obvious weak areas.

That’s how I see it, and the task at hand is then to build such a team.

 Normally, I don’t engage much in discussions about individual player’s qualities or the tactic, we need to use. I prefer to leave that to people with much more knowledge about it. But please excuse me for venturing a little bit down that road here.

If I look at our current preferred players and use my limited knowledge to asses, how many players we have, who are, or potentially could be, players with the required quality to challenge for the title over a whole season, I get a picture, which looks like the below. I challenge you to make your own evaluation of each player, and see what you get. The method being looking at each player and make a judgement:

  1. Do they have the quality already to be part of a title winning team, providing the rest of the team is ready as well, or
  2. How long will it take to develop the quality, if indeed possible for that particular player

See if you agree:

 GK:Ramsdale (ready, or max. 1 year from being ready).I don’t know, if we can count Leno, or if he is on the way out.

Goalkeeping conclusion is we may need a new back-up keeper, but we potentially have title winning quality.

Defenders:Tomiasu (1-2 years from being ready)White (1 year from being ready)Gabriel (ready, a Brazil international of high quality)Tierney (ready, but his repeated injuries may be a problem)Holding (will never acquire the necessary quality, but maybe he can be a back-up, if only it isn’t in too many games)Tavares (question mark? Has potential, but may not quite make it)Cedric (OK as occasional back-up)Saliba (will leave him out, as I understand he isn’t certain to play for us)

My conclusion about the defense is, we are close to having a starting 4, with the necessary quality, but LB could be a problem, as Tierney often is injured, and Tavares may not be the back-up, we have hoped for. It makes sense to me that we are being connected to LB’s in the transfer window.

Midfielders:Partey (ready)Xhaka (not quite ready IMO, and his age indicates he may never quite get there)Odegaard (1-2 years away from being ready)Lokonga (I am not sure, but if at all, then at least 2-3 years development is needed)Elneny (not quite good enough to be a starter in a title winning side)ESR (1-2 years, but may be difficult to fit in)Flores (?? Possibly in 2-3 years)AMN (will not make it IMO)

Midfield conclusion is that we need at least 1 more player, who can acquire the necessary quality in 1-2 years.

Attackers:Saka (ready or max 1 year from being ready)Martinelli (1-2 years from being ready)

Pepe (I doubt he will ever be the answer)

Nketiah (maybe in 2-3 years)Balogun (maybe in 2-3 years)Nelson (never more than a back-up)

The conclusion is of course, we are in dire need of 1 attacker/forward, who is “certain” to provide us goals and who can last at least 2-3 years and be part of a potential title winning team.

 Being an optimist, I would say, we have around 5 players (Ramsdale, Gabriel, Tierney, Partey and Saka), who all could be part of a potential title winning starting line-up this coming season, if only there were another 6 players already with the same high quality.

This actually means, if we were to mount a title challenge already next season, we would need at least 6 new players of the highest quality. Even if we had Santa Claus as our owner, it wouldn’t happen. In fact, even if the money was there, the Financial Fair Play rules would probably prevent us from such an “investment”.

 So if we are to mount a title challenge, it can’t be next season, no matter what. We have to look to the future.

This is where it becomes interesting, I think.

The 5 players, who are ready, all have the age and potential to become even better in the next 2-3 years. So if we can keep them, and the 3-4 players, who have a huge potential to acquire the necessary quality in the next 2-3 years, continue their development, we actually do have a promising situation. With a few more players added in the right positions, we could get there I think. But we have to have the patience and the discipline to stay the course, if we want to become PL champions.

I can’t see it happening quicker. Yes, we could possibly spend a lot of money on one or two fully established players in their late twenties, and it could make us stronger short term. But my hope is, that we are only looking at players who potentially will be at their peak, not only now, but especially in 2-3 years.

I will be surprised, if we sign any player older than 25-26 years.

AndersS

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  1. If Arsenal qualifies for CL this season, then maybe within 2-3 years more. If not, then I wouldn’t dare to hope as we’ll always lack squad quality to compete with top 4 teams.

  2. We are as far as we possibly could be. We are probably more closer towards west ham, crystal palace and other mid table teams than the top four teams.

  3. The article is highly optimistic in the assessments of a lot of the players, except tomiyasu, who I do think is the best defender we have. The problem with having lots of players with potential is that a good portion will not realise their potential for a host of reasons.

  4. Looking at the fixture list published this morning I’d say that from our five August games we have a realistic chance of 12 points which would be a great start to the campaign.

  5. AndersS, I’m sorry my friend, but, despite all the hard work you have put in to this article, the simple answer is that we are years away from challenging City and Liverpool – it’s as simple as that.
    Furthermore, unless we sign some top players this window, we will also fall way behind Chelsea and the spuds.

    At the moment, I believe we are in the second tier of clubs involved in the PL and challenging for the PL is even further away than you believe we have been for the last decade.

    1. I disagree.
      We are in a rebuild phase, like Liverpool were not so long ago. It takes time, and it can’t be rushed.

      1. The trouble is that other clubs like Newcastle, spurs and a few others are also rebuilding, but quicker and overtaking us.

        1. Ι completely agree with this. The author is too optimistic. Even if we had 11 players of similar quality of the 5 you list above as ready, they will still not be able to compare with the current city and Liverpool squads. Because in order to challenge you need players that will go that extra mile, world class players. Imo, we have 0 of those atm. Being world class could be a matter of quality but it could also mean that you have the necessary experience and/or mentality to perform consistently at the top level. Comparing our pots, saka’s goal/assist tally with salah or son for example (or even jota, mane, mahrez would played fewer minutes) will show you how far we are atm. So to conclude, I think that saka, Tierney, tomiyasu, Gabriel, Partey could be part of a title winning side, but only if at least 3-4 of the other players are of even higher quality and not equal. Ben white, ramsdale, martinelli, odegaard are also good players but you still need some higher quality additions. Also, other things to take into consideration are that young players do not develop as fast if they only play with other young players, they need some experienced teammates, either to learn/develop their skills or to observe them and learn how they handle tough matches and a 50-60 game marathon.

      2. @AndersS
        We’ve been rebuilding for the past…check notes…decade. I wish I could share your hopes but sadly, the truth is staring us in the face like our noses in the mirror. Rebuilding is more of making the right decisions to correct the effects of bad ones made in the past.

        Now we:
        1. Sell good players for atrocious sums
        2. Litter everywhere with potentials
        3. Have become the ultimate bottle job football club
        4. Are no longer an appeal to top players
        5. Have become solid Europa League regulars
        6. Have been overtaken in London by Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur

        By the time we “rebuild” and move 10 steps forward, other top clubs would have moved 50 steps forward. We talk of potential like we are the only ones improving while others just sit and become stale. I do enjoy reading your posts because they’re usually full of hope without clumsily denying the obvious facts that we are making way too many mistakes like many always do

        1. As for when we actually started rebuilding, it is an interesting questiog. For me rebuilding has to be done according to a laid plan. Maybe I have missed something, but I haven’t registered anything looking like a plan until about 10 months ago. In the previous xx years, we seemed to be putting our faith in adding a few players to a dysfunctional squad.
          I basically agree with most of your 6 points, but maybe our difference is, I believe we can come back ;), and that we have taken the first few baby steps.

      3. Anders please dont compare us to Liverpool, our players aren’t capable of the improvement required, our set up is light years away and Arteta is most definitely not Klopp. You are way too optimistic.

        1. I think, it is relevant to compare our situation to the one, Liverpool was in, and to look at how they have become a top team again without buying their way to success.
          I really don’t se any other plan being suggested. The constant complaining about others buying this and that player is really just nonsense IMO.

          1. They sold Coutinio for 150 mil and bought wisely. We have no coutinio and we don’t have a record for buying wisely. Plus the Klopp factor and we cant compare us in anyway shape or form to Liverpool.

            1. AndersS, how long did it take liverpool to win the PL title?

              I believe it was longer than the “barren years”, as many like to quote, when AW was trying to repeat his successes.

              Is that how long you expect MA to take?
              For me, if he gets top four, CL qualification and FA cup wins along the way, while playing attractive football, then he has my support – finishing 8th twice, 5th once, no european football and exiting the fa cup in the 4th and 3rd rounds doesn’t fill me with any optimistic fervour whatsoever.

              1. I am not sure, what you expect me to answer regarding Liverpool.
                But as you probably well know, when they won the league in 19/20, it was after a 30 year wait.
                We are currently on 18 years. Of course, I don’t see us as planning for winning again after anoyher 12 years.
                But the fact is, Liverpool have won the league, after the influx of new owners at City and Chelsea, not by competing with the money investment, but by a following a philosophy and a plan for at least 4-5 years with Klopp.
                I really don’t see any other way forward being suggested, that can make us challenge for the title again, than the one, we have embarked upon.
                I don’t expect us to get a Santa from the Arabian desert to buy us a new team.
                So the idea of building a young team, which can develop together for a few more years, seems good to me.

    2. Spot on ken1945!

      This team is no where near Man C or Liverpool. It even looks like after Nunez Liverpool may get Rafinha. Were talking about teams who are more hungrier than ever to win the EPL and CL. Even if we do bring in Jesus and Tielemans (Which looks unlikely due to a lack of movement and dawdling as usual), we will still need to work on our soft under-belly and lack of mental and physical strength. A disease that has been rife at Arsenal for over a decade!

      I understand that MA has a “process” of rebuilding but MA couldn’t tell you when the process of rebuilding will be complete because he has no idea of how much money he has to spend or who to spend it on. The Kronkes’ are making those decisions. Buying youngsters for the future is safer at this point because it gives the club an excuse if they fail. They will always say, “trust the process”. And, like gullible little puppies, most of us will!

    3. I agree Ken. Also looking at the manager, and is he ready?
      1. Philosophy?
      2. Style of play?
      3. Man management?
      4. Leadership?

      Arteta clearly still years away as he has missed the top 4 for 3 straight finishes, and hasn’t improved on the weak mentality.

  6. Man City
    J. Grealish £105.75 Aug. 2021
    K. De Bruyne £68.40 Aug. 2015
    R. Dias £61.20 Sept. 2020
    R. Mahrez £61.02 July 2018
    J. Cancelo £58.50 Aug. 2019
    A. Laporte £58.50 Jan. 2018
    R. Sterling £57.33 July 2015
    Rodri £56.43 July 2019
    B. Mendy £51.75 July 2017
    J. Stones £50 Aug. 2016
    K. Walker £47. July 2017
    B. Silva £45 July 2017
    N. Ake £40. Aug. 2020
    Fernandinho £36 July 2013
    Ederson £36 July 2017
    G. Jesus £28.80 Jan. 2017
    I. Gundogan £24.30 July 2016
    Around 900 mill.
    Then there are the massive salaries.
    You need quality and depth and Man City have it.
    Bet they sold a few dozen chip butties to pay for those players.

    1. Arsenal.
      Ramsdale 30m
      Leno 27m being sold
      Turner 7m
      Tierney 25m
      Tavares 8m
      Tomiyasu 22m
      Soares Free
      Bellerin Free
      Niles Free
      Gabriel 23m
      White 50m
      Saliba 27m
      Holding 2m
      Mari 2m
      Trusty loan
      Xhaka 30m
      Partey 45m
      Lokinga 17m
      Torreira 27m To be sold
      Elneny 7m
      Odegaard 30m
      ESR Free
      Saka Free
      Pepe 72m
      Martinelli 7m
      Nelson Free
      Nketiah free
      Marquinos 5m
      467m.

      1. What has listing players transfer fees got to do with the question?
        Are we, or are we not, light years away from winning the PL?

        1. Liverpool have won the CL under Klopp, City have not.
          The point is, Liverpool have built a competitive team for much less money, and we should take courage from that, instead of coplaining about not being able to spent unlimited funds from bottomless pockets.

          1. Exactly right . But Liverpool seem to me to have a far better financial grasp of players both in and out then we have done for many years past.
            It is down to the ultimate financial decision maker to get those matters right. WE have been very bad at doing thisfor many years past and IMO still are and seem likely to remain so for the foreseeable future.

            That is the nub of where I MAJORLY DISAGREE WITH YOUR WELCOME BUT IMO OVER OPTIMISTIC VIEW.
            I always like optimism but even more, I love REALISM!

        2. Liverpool have won the league and the champions league having played in 3 finals in 5 years. And also playing one of the most exciting football

  7. It amazes me at Arsenal. We stare at our team with an internal sullen stare wondering when the team will produce, waiting for this group to produce, but in reality the flowering of our team will always be RELATIVE to other teams. For supposition, NOW, other teams are clearly progressing in their flowerings with a greater sense of urgency, signing their players. But WE are not developing to compete ‘NOW’, as most of our competitors are. Many of our supporters are waiting convinced we will flower and be the best in the future. Waiting for the promised land. Problem is we live in the now. As the Dalai Lama’s aide said to him ‘Things change Kundun’ (honorary name). This fantasy of a better future as opposed to now is an illusory understanding of realty. We need to do business ‘NOW’. We may think that by waiting we are being ‘WISE’ and things may come to those that wait. Sadly that contradicts reality, good practices, sensible practices in ‘The Present’ lead to good results, but waiting on the wings of a prayer leads to unpredicted changes, maybe worse…..things change. It’s now we need top players, now we need a good owner, now we need a good manager, now the wisdom must start. Right ‘NOW’. Otherwise our rivals just might have more wisdom/results than Arsenal. Sign our players NOW.

  8. We’re about 20 men and 10 years off a title challenge given how useless we are in the transfer market compared with city and liverpoo.

    We have I dunno maybe 4 potential world class players? Saka, Odegaard, smith-rowe and martinelli.

    You are kidding yourself if you think we can be a 90 point team in the next “1-3” years.

  9. Having a strong first eleven won’t cut it if you are playing in Europe, if you play twice a week you have to be able to rotate. Leicester were able to win the title with a small squad because they weren’t playing European football.

    The developing young players argument sounds suspiciously like a rerun of Pochettino’s time at Spurs. He did exactly that and some of those players are still there so it was clearly successful. But he never won the title, there just wasn’t that hard edge you need and maybe only experience can provide. Hence Conte signing a 33 year old who does have that experience. Its a balance Arteta will need to think about.

  10. If AFC were truly serious about closing the
    CONSIDERABLE gap with the
    likes of City/Pool/Chelsea and soon to be Spuds the
    Kroenkes would have to sanction a MASSIVE
    spending spree over the next few months in
    conjunction with the binning of a number of
    players that simply aren’t good enough to feature
    in the first team.

    My worthless 2 cents as always…

    IN:

    Jesus: £40M
    L. Jovic: £15M
    Raphina: £50M
    Tielemans: £25M
    Doucoure: £20M
    Hickey: £25M
    N. Mazraoui: FREE

    Apprx. £175M spent

    OUT: (Realistic prices)

    Leno: £10M
    Xhaka: £10M
    Bellerin: £10M
    Pepe: £20M
    Torreria: £10M
    AMN: £10M
    Cedric: £5M
    Mari: £8M

    Roughly £80M recouped in sales with a net spent
    of around £95M

    Loan out Tavares, Lokonga, Nelson, and Balogun

  11. We are not anywhere near title contenders, the whole team and the lack of managerial nouse is hamstringing us. We wont win a title with staff not capable. Arteta has shown nothing to show he is capable and we are light years away.

  12. Miles off being involved in the title race, we can barely see City and Liverpool headed off into the distance and unfortunately it wont be long before Spurs join them, but surely going into the fourth year of this ‘process’ CL qualification is a must and the following season a title challenge or what is point of this ‘process’. What is the end goal?

  13. Let me guess this straight, our team who haven’t make it to UCL in six years has the potential to challenge for the league In 2 to 3 years time..
    Well it depends on what you call challenge then I will know where to go from there.
    Leceister, spurs and chelsea have reportedly challenged for the title as the season begins to some extent.
    They all manage it for quarter of season at least. if you are talking about that kind of challenge, then you maybe right. We could even do that this new coming season. But talking of real challenge, then we are very far from it, as it is clear more than ever that our new challenge is now being in Europa which is where we have been for the couples of years. The only team who have won the league in the past 10 years apart from Liverpool and City are both Chelsea and leceister and both were able to do it , because they didn’t have European competition then. Last year was our chance of at least challenging but we didn’t even get into UCL. Because we decided to splash the team into two and field the kids. So at the end of the day, we have the excuse of having the most youngest team and manager in the league. Sadly it’s not count as a challenge for trophy, nor there’s any reward for that.

  14. We weren’t challenging for the title despite finishing 2nd but the ones who were really challenging finished 3rd. What kind of logic is that? Does it make any sense?

    How some will stoop so low to bash Wenger.

    1. My point is, the year Leicester won the league and we finished 2’nd, we were already many points behind with 10 games to play, whereas Spurs were ahead of us and had more than a mathematical chance with 4-5 games to go. So to me, they were actually challenging more/longer, than we were.

    2. @We just finished second behind Leicester.
      We never challenged for the title that season.
      Spurs are the ones that were challenging Leicester for the title that season.
      The only season we challenged for the title in the Emirate era was the 2007/08 season..

      Anyone that still thinks that we challenged for the title in 2015/16 is just clutching ar Straws (Delusional)..

      I think Leicester amassed up about an 8-10 gap advantage between january to March that they maintained on us to the end of the season. I might be wrong but we only amassed about 5 points in January. We were averaging about 6 points a month between January to March while Leicester were averaging about 8 point.

      How can a team claim to have challenged for the title when they finished 10 points behind and were mathematically out of it with 3 games to go? Leicester maintained a healthy point lead on us before we drew with Sunderland with 3 games to go..

      As always, when the pressure is on we lose our bottle. But the moment there is no pressure we then start fluttering ti deceive..

      1. So the team that finished 10 points behind did not challenge for the title but the one finished 11 points behind did challenge for it.

        Which planet does this logic come from? So Spurs were still in it with 3 games to go?

          1. I don’t know if you guys are just being obtuse or dishonest. Or you just want to be argumentative for the sake of it?

            But weren’t we all there you during that season? Just read the articles on here from between January to May and tell me we were challenging for the title? Articles after article on Just Arsenal were busy pelting the club, wenger and the players as bottlers and not being good enough.

            Can you please find me the articles on here at the business end of the 2015/16 season suggesting that we were challenging Leicester for the title?

            Spurs were mathematically still in with a shout until that game at Chelsea where they lost their minds, it ended 2-2. They then had a total meltdown for the last 2 games..

            I can’t believe we are even having this arguement when we were all there that season. Leicester maintained a very healthy points margin on us and all they had to do was match our results, they did that with ease hence the 10 gap lead.

            Spurs on the other had a complete meltdown after that 2-2 game at Chelsea because they knew that was it for them as having a chance at winning the title. And I think they downed tools / were discouraged after that, hence why we piped them to second.

            Arsenal just finished in 2nd but were not the team that Leicester was getting nervous about, it was Spurs.. Let’s call a spade a spade..

            Again, you need to take off your biased tinted glasses and be honest, objective. The FACTS clearly show that Spurs were more of the challangers than us. With 2 games to go the highest we could finish was 2nd, With Spurs they still had a slim chance to finish in First.

            But just being argumentative with no substance to back up your straw clutching claims is a bit 🤦‍♂️

          2. Will do so Ken thank you very much. Now Goonster say they were still mathematically in it with three games to go. From what I know three games is 9 points and Spurs finished 11 points behind.

        1. Just check the FACT. Spurs were still mathematically in it with 3 games to go. We on the other hand were out of it with 3 games to go..

          Can you understand that?

          Just type into google 2015/16 title challenge. You will see media article after another citing Spurs and the real challengers at the latter end of that season..

          Even on every Arsenal fans forum, articles and comments from all us were hoping and praying that Leicester won the title than Spurs.. I can speak for myself but I was supporting Chelsea that night. Chelsea spoiled the spurs party that night, the spuds lost their marbles as they could see their title hopes evaporating in front on them..

          But let’s not let the FACTS get in the way. Isn’t it?

            1. Yes completely agree with this logic. 11 points behind but in it with 3 games to go. What am I missing here? Algebracadabra?

              1. @HH
                So you now agree that your claim that we challenged for the title in 2015/16 was false and meant to mislead?

                We were never title contenders.. Spurs were within 4-6 points of Leicester before that 2-2 game against chelsea with 2 games to go.. We on the other hand were already at least 9 points behind Leicester and 2nd place was the best we could achieve..

                “But but Arsenal were title challengers that season”. Smh

                This season we finished on 69 points while Man United finished on 58 points. With about 4 games to go 6th place was the worst we could finish and 3rd place was the maximum.. So according to yours and @Ken1945 logic United were Top 3-4 contenders?

                The mental gymnastics and word salad you guys love to engage in is amazing.
                👍😊

                1. No. Its when some take every opportunity to take away from Wenger’s success even if it means to praise the bitter neighbours.

                  Arsenal finished second that season and Spurs third. How can you and some others praise Spurs who finished 3rd at our expense if not to just take it away from Wenger?

                  We finished higher than them, we had more point than them and yet they were challenging and we were not?

            2. @SueP
              I don’t know if some people just want to Argue for the sake of it or if they want to be as misleading / dishonest on purpose..

              But in our current Social Media environment it all seems to be about doubling down on our personal beliefs/ biases no matter the more objective evidence..
              It’s all about winning cheap points over the other..
              😊

          1. goonster you are spot on. people choosing to forget. we were never in that title race and spurs were. arsenal had an opportinty to try and be ambitious in jan but we did nothing and faded as usual.

            1. @RSH
              And in that January we amassed 6 points from 4 games. In February we amassed 6 points. The games that were meant to be for March we amassed about 7 points.

              By April we draw 0-0 with sunderland and that was it mathematically for us as Leicester had maintained a 10 point lead..

              But let’s try to rewrite history and mislead people hoping that no one notices. 😊

  15. Various personal thoughts Anders, not all connected to each other.
    Firstly, a welcome optimistic article as an antidote to the many negative articles, esp from Dan, along with his many negative “fan club”.
    Secondly, though I believe in optimism as a life aim, I cannot agree with your take on us being anywhere near ready to challenge for the title in a year or two. I am with Ken 1945 and his post(above)
    To do so, will IMO need a change of owner and this seems very remote indeed.
    Thirdly, to give such a detailed list of all individuals players pros and cons is a brave , some might think a FOOLHARDY THING to lay yourself open to on THIS of all sites. But in general, I applaud bravery, though I applaud bravery twinned with REALITY, far more.
    Finally, I much hope you will continue what have been some astutely well written and INTERESTING articles, esp of late and I greatly value supporters with fine brains and a REAL ability to write. as you have amply shown!

    1. @jonfox
      The reactions are as expected.
      I have suggested we could be competitive in 2-3 years. I think this is the plan, Arsenal is following at the moment, and I really don’t see anyone suggesting another plan, which could be called more realistic.

  16. A good read but IMO a very optimistic view as also pointed out by others. But I, also being an optimist as well as someone who believes in the law of averages see us in the mix some 5-6 years in the future. Idk about the players who would be there for that time, maybe a couple of major sales and about five major acquisitions spaced over the time period might enable us to challenge. Now personally, an ownership change is really rare even though we saw two in the PL this past year, so maybe we would still be with Kroenkes’ as the owners. I would think we would have a different manager as I can see MA lasting a maximum of 2 years at his current state or even if he miraculously learns from all the mistakes that he made and suddenly becomes a tactical genius rivalling Tuchel, Klopp and Pep. Because if he is good a large club would come calling right about that time as most established managers would have a chance of moving elsewhere and if he is bad fan pressure would make it difficult for the board to keep him. Maybe after that Kroenke’s would go for someone experienced or even promote the academy manager lol. But then again who can predict the future lol. I just hope that in the optimistic time frame you proposed we would be consistently in the CL and fighting for top 4 in the prem as well as win atleast another FA cup.

    1. @NY-Gunner
      I actually on purpose tried to keep the Arteta discussion out of it, as it seem to be taking over almost any debate here. I doubt anything new will surface, or any opinions altered on that subject.

  17. we’re nowhere near competing for a title anytime soon…until we get our tactics and recruitment practices right we’re little more than a hopeful contender for a European position, more likely Europa than the CL…this club needs at least two world-class players this window to even put ourselves in contention for 3rd or 4th, but any talk of being in a race for first is pure Blinders nonsense…frankly, we don’t deserve to really be in the conversation considering how we’ve conducted ourselves, organizationally-speaking, for well over a decade

    1. Even if we signed 2 or 3 world class players, how effective would they be under Arteta? Auba went from Golden boot to dud under Arteta.

      With our static positioning, possession without intention and indirect play, how successful would top top players be?

      I don’t expect us to challenge for anything under the management of Arteta. Especially when we were 4 points up and 3 games to play, he can’t get the team over the finish line.

      But somehow he can get results all year and challenge for the title? No way. Can’t manage a 3 game finish, no chance in hell he can do it over 38 games. No evidence to suggest that, but plenty to suggest he isn’t the leader we need.

      1. Durand, we have to hope that their presence will not only encourage our tactically naïve manager to loosen the reigns, but that it will likewise enable and embolden others to raise their respective games, especially as opposing team’s shift their tactical focus towards those best-suited to handle the added pressures

        spending money isn’t the problem, it’s how one spends it…far too often we’ve paid above the number for players who neither justify the investment nor fit the tactical script

        unfortunately the lessen learned from these perceived “recruitment” errors is that we should look for more frugal options, only to find out that the odds that these shot in the dark options “come good” are considerably less than when one goes “bigger” fish hunting, especially up the middle of the pitch

        this is why we need to identify those individuals who are on the cutting edge when it comes to scouting and recruitment, then hire on the one or two who best identify the kind of players you most desire, from both a tactical and clubhouse sense

        we, on the other hand, have no definitive and/or viable tactical game-plan, a vastly inexperienced and inadequate brain trust and our MIT wants to monopolize the room, which makes it highly unlikely that this organizational shift can occur at this time…he’s simply too fragile and/or egoistic to ask for or accept the desperately-needed help

  18. The Spuds are signing Bissouma. I want to vomit. We are out thought, and out fought…. by the Spuds….how vomit sick is that. We have the disease of waiting for others to nick the players we need just as the Spuds did in January. Pathetic.

  19. This is the most depressed fanbase in football. Are any of you even gutted after a loss, or does it simply affirm your pessimism? The article may be overly optimistic but most of you seem to have no hope and think very little of there being any meaningful progress happening at the club. Watching a match with some of you must be exhausting….

  20. trying to build a squad that can grow together for 3 odd years, whilst adding experience around is the most obvious move (then spending billions like Newcastle will eventually) to getting to the top in time.

    Because we cannot compete right now with the top 2, we need to first get pass 4th. That’s all the focus in shaping a squad for now and something that will grow into something for tomorrow.

  21. Lets’s understand this, Arsenal has to go into this year’s Europa league with intention to win it which qualifies us to Champions league. I have seen us twice beaten at the finals of Europa and that’s when we thought of ourselves as too good for that cup. It turns out we are actually not good enough after being beaten by Galatasaray and Olympiakos- frankly my heart sank seeing g my Arsenal with Bergkamp, Thierry Henry, Vieira, Pires etc beaten by players I never heard of. Then it happened again against Olympiakos although at that time we were on our way down.
    Please go there this time with intentions to win and as a qualification for champions league because we did”nt merit playing in it earlier. Please Arteta win us something. We are full of emptiness playing so many years in Europe and no tinpot to show for our effort.

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