Arteta cannot fail to bring in a striker in January (last year it cost us)

Eddie Nketiah has scored 10 goals in 71 League appearances since 2017.

It’s been nearly a year since Arsenal decided to give away their best striker, giving the 23-year-old and Lacazette the chance to prove they were good enough to consistently play for a club our size.

Eddie found the back of the net in 3 Prem fixtures. This season it’s zero.

Just say that out loud. In nearly 12 months Eddie Nketiah has scored in three League matches.

There are Gooners who will defend that record, due to their definition of a supporter that you can’t critique any aspect of the club they support.

I have peers who casually have decided that a player shouldn’t be judged on what contribution they make or don’t make as a substitute.

Heck, in the last two weeks I read opinions that a Ronaldo and Mbappe wouldn’t be wanted at the Emirates!

Some statement when you consider our lack of firepower.

That’s harmless enough.

If the Gunners want to pay someone 100,000 pound a week just to score in the Europa League and League cup, that’s their prerogative.

If people want to defend that salary to suit their agenda, then fine.

If they can’t bring it to themselves to admit they were wrong that’s okay.

If they want to pretend that he’s a better option then Ronaldo or Mbappe, I can laugh that off. Until it starts impacting on our best chance of winning the title in decades, an opportunity that might not arise again.

The moment Gabriel Jesus got injured at the World Cup, buying a striker for January should be a priority.

Reports in Brazil have mentioned the need of surgery which would see him side-lined for three months.

His national boss though has warned of ‘ fake news ‘ in South America and it should be stressed zero diagnosis have come from North London.

A striker should have been a target anyway with-it clear Jesus is not a prolific scorer himself.

Edu has known that for months and should have been scouting the world to improve us in this area. That after all is his job, something he gets paid thousands of pounds to do.

The only positive is, in theory, we only have 2 matches till January to put our faith in Nketiah, a Championship level player at best. A forward who wouldn’t make the bench of any of our top 6 rivals.

That should have been a priority anyway. Now It’s essential.

I won’t accept the notion it’s hard to find quality this time of year, as I’m asking not for world class simply then someone better than 0 League goals this season.

Unless Arteta has something up his sleeve, like trying Martinelli through the middle, it his no exaggeration to say this decision could cost us the Championship.

Last year our refusal to bring in a striker in the winter window cost us top 4, this time it would cost us the title itself.

Dan Smith
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66 Comments

      1. If Kroenke doesn’t agree to make a deal in January, Arteta wouldn’t be able to get a new player

        1. The gaffer has prosecuted his case so impressively, it virtually impossible for the owners not to back him.

  1. I’d love to see Ivan Toney sign for us, the lad is so underrated, 10 goals in 14 outings is good enough to fight it out with GJ when fit for the EPL + FA + EL. No ego, no baggage, pure skill, pair him with Mikel’s coaching and there would be no losers. But finally, Arteta Knows Best

        1. Sign Vincent Aboubakar or Luis Suarez till the end of the season. However long Gab is gon be out relying on Eddie will be our undoing.

  2. We needed a striker and DM . The injury to Jesus makes it more of a pressing issue. Looking at the Brazil game last night I wondered whether we should have gone for both Jesus and Richarlison!

    1. Richarlison is a severely limited player. His “skills” came unstuck against more organized EPL sides. Jesus doesnt score much but his overall play is wayyyy better than Richarlison.

  3. The key words should be GOAL SCORERS, and we have enough of those to see us through to a Champions League spot (and maybe even more), which after all is the object. Eddie will do well enough. Not world Class? No problem, he’ll get you 8 or 9 which will be just fine.
    Less negativity, please!

    1. Interesting question. I’d be anxiously excited because he’s one of the top three players in the world but he comes with an equally big ego that seems at odds with what Arteta is creating (Now if you ask the same question of Ronaldo, I’d be absolutely gutted and wouldn’t want him anywhere near our club. Thought it odd you put him on the same sentence as Mbappe in the article to be honest)

      The more I think about it, the more I think a high profile loan with an obligation to buy based on certain milestones being reached is what Edu might be looking for.

  4. “Eddie Nketiah has scored 10 goals in 71 League appearances since 2017”

    First sentence – flawed subjective use of a predictor variable. How many minutes has he played, not how many games would be a better predictor. My view of Nketiah is that he’s not good enough for a title challenge, but that’s simply a subjective assessment based on watching him play, I don’t mis-use stats to pretend to justify a subjective viewpoint.

    Then…

    “It’s been nearly a year since Arsenal decided to give away their best striker”

    I only had to get to that second sentence to realise who wrote this. I stopped there. Bye (i.e. I won’t be returning to this article to read more of the usual Smithsonian pseudo-logic).

  5. Let’s get oshimen. We need a full time goal poacher. This is not the time for experimenting. We need to learn how we lost out from the top 4 last season when everyone thought we would even have been on number 3 but we lost it.

  6. Failure to add striker last winter might cost us the top 4 but that allowed the club financially to go for Jesus this summer and the lack of CL might allowed us to top the league table by 5 points now. The squad is still thin and the team need more investment. However I do prefer slow but steady approach. It’s being working so far. It’s never about the players, talented or not. It’s the successful Arteta system that the players must tune to.

    1. Exactly why I don’t agree with Dan over how Mbappe would impact our team. His ego will cause many problems

      1. It will never happen because he wouldnt come to us but I be interested if you woke up and heard Mbappe had signed how dissapointed you would be ?

    2. You need talented players to implement his system! Have you seen how we struggle without party? A machine would not work without the right cogs

    3. Great post @Mike Ram.

      Arsenal were apparently ready to splash the cash last winter for Vlahovic. It didnt work out and, credit to them, weren’t ready to splash the cash to appease the fan base. If there is a deal to be made that makes sense to Arteta and Edu next month, I’ve got confidence they’ll try to get it done. If nothing suits their fancy then hopefully they stay the course (maybe recall Balogun although of rather see him stay on loan)

  7. I’ve never been a big defender of the kid or his biggest supporter but you’re only stirring things up with him.
    Talk about 71 games like he actually played up to 50 games if you calculate the number of minutes played.

    Also it’s the same kid who last season when he played with the shaky senior team, found a couple of goals that was important in securing that 5th position.
    This season he’s been poor, but the entire B team he’s played with have all been poor. Performances always and will always influence performance and growth. At least give the kids the chance to play properly with the senior team this season before crucifying him as usual.
    Do I think we need another striker? Toney? Mitrovic? Yes if we can get them we should and I’d love that but we both know we ain’t getting none of those players this Jan. Not to come sit on the bench or have their team sell them to us mid season.
    Give Nketiah a break FFS, judge him after his contribution in his first 5 games with the senior boys

    1. Yeah but I don’t go by this logic that you don’t have to make an impact but I’ll go by your own rule
      I would also question why he’s only a sub and not trusted by Arteta or before that Emery ?
      End of last season he played 8 games in a row and scored in three games ( one of which was on final day of season )

      1. So in those 8 games, how many goals and assists was his output? Or because that doesn’t fit into your agenda it doesn’t count?
        You like to bash on the kid all the time, again, I’ve never been his biggest fan but the way you talk about him makes it look like he’s a terrible player. How many league games has he started for us? Oh you mean he should’ve started over an in-form Auba under Emery and Arteta at the age he was? What was your expectation?

        1. At this level he is a terrible player ….we are talking about trying to win the Prem mate .
          Propel said same last year and he didn’t do enough
          Went missing at spurs , Newcastle , Southampton, In the cup at Forrest
          And enough with this he doesn’t start
          If your a sub , take your opportunity , get noticed.
          His failure to make an impact off the bench is a reflection on him
          He’s played over 100 games for us , to say he hasn’t had a chance ?

    2. @Eddie five games when we’ve blown away our top four and City, Spuds, Newcastle and Chelsea have overtaken us? Sounds like a brilliant idea! Successful entrepreneurs never let sentimentalism get the better of them when it comes to talent retention!

  8. A striker must be the priority and for me Mitrovic fits the requirement. – if we can get him. The politics will sort themselves out. For me Eleney has never let the side down so as a back-up he is the right fit. Rather spend more on the front man and get who you want. Why do you think City spent so much on Haarland ??

  9. I’m not sure Arteta wants a target man type striker, so I don’t Toney or Mitrovic are on the cards. Bearing that in might I think the perfect options for his system would be Felix however I believe that is more a summer move. Kudus is the one we should be looking at imho, he can play across the front line and in the number 10 position too.

  10. My sixth sense just tell me this meeting in the big apple is all about telling the owners the reported 50 mil war chest wont cut it.

    1. Gunsmoke Someof us don’t need a sixth sense to see the totally obvious truth, which is as you say!

      They are OBVIOUSLY in New York to plead for proper money to spend.

  11. A few people here saying we should get Toney but can you honestly see Brentford selling him in January, he’s contracted until 2025 and Brentford will get more for him and a few more clubs interested in him during the close season. Should we go for him then , yes, but getting him in January is a non starter.

    1. Marty a think its worth giving a try, we could test their resolve.

      But am convinced we can sign one of these premier league striker, its if the gaffer is interested.

    2. @Marty every player has a price. If we want Toney we’ll get him. depends on what josh thinks. Methinks it would be suicidal to rely on nketiah.

  12. Spot on Dan. The level of delusion within a section of our fanbase is annoying to be honest. I was shocked to read a different arsenal forum (didn’t finish the article tho!) where the author has gone full in on nketiah and even went on to bring up GJ lack of goals vs Eddie’s goal tally, completely ignoring GJ’s unrivaled role in the team this season! Shocking how people can be dumb and so blind to such a straightforward issue.

    1. Arrogance in our fanbase is astounding
      Fact some are essentially choosing Eddie Nketiah over Mbappe …..wow

  13. Eddie Nketiah is not good enough to replace jesus ever, never and forever. We need a top striker and we did when we signed Nketiah to a huge contract for a novice.

  14. Nketiah is not the answer, based on his productivity. Use games played, minutes and goals scored, whatever metric you wish, but he continues to fall short.

    He tries, he runs, he isn’t a rotten apple on the bench, but he simply isn’t good enough. The drop off in quality is too much, and he struggles to influence the game if he isn’t scoring,

  15. Agree Eddie can not offer what Jesus does overall upfront but at least write a fair and truthful article. Not sure where the 3 prem goals came from it’s simply not true. He scored 5 in 7 end of last season after he took the starting role from laca, first time and only time he’s ever been a starter for us. He hasn’t started a prem game since. He has 3 in the 7 cup games he’s started this season. 8 goals in his last 14 starts for us, not a bad record and not sure what else he could of done it that time to get people off his back. Some are acting like he can’t hit a barn door. Been some bright cameos in the league this season as well. He’s not Jesus and I understand the concern but people are pretending he’s useless which I can not fathom. He’s one of our own, works his socks off, nothing but positives come out about his attitude off the pitch and he’s not nearly as bad as made out. There is a reason he’s not started this year but he’s not a championship player either.

    1. Angus
      Until you mentioned works his socks off you were doing OK
      Unfortunately In my opinion EN has the tools to be a very good striker but seems to lack hunger, desire and application
      He is not the answer and who says the club are not actively looking already
      As for Dan comment on its been nearly a year now since arsenal gave away our best striker…
      Get real dan
      Aubes was done for us and good riddance to players who don’t want to play for us whole heartedly
      Question.
      Do you actually believe we would be sitting top of the league if aubes was our main striker?
      Personally I think we have moved on and progressed without him.

      1. At the time Auba was our best striker
        If we had replaced him In jan great but we didn’t
        Were lacca and Eddie better were they ?

  16. Wise comments from Ab08, Aubameyang would not have been able to do the things Jesus has inspired Arsenal to do so far this season, however he would be able to provide a better back up option than Nketien. as a long term longshot the Portuguese kid Ramos should be in the mix but I doubt that Arsenal would be able to compete for him seeing that good young strikers are a rare species.

  17. I don’t see Napoli selling their best striker when they’re on course to win their first scudetto in a decade or more.

  18. Common sense would say so CXIII, but Napoli are a bit unpredictable. Only a few years ago they fired Ancelotti midseason when in a good league position and after that a decent Champions League run. The reason apparently being that he was too expensive for them.

  19. I completely agree with Dan. A striker should be the priority. Reports indicate Arsenal is very keen on either or both Gakpo and Mudryk, I am sure Arteta knows the reality and importance of signing a forward this January.

  20. How long before we’re linked to Ramos of Benfica?
    Not for me, and TBH I think we can make it through with the goal force we already have, and if Smith Rowe makes an early return Martinelli can play that all-action role that Jesus does so well.

    1. JAX, I LIKE YOU AND I LIKE YOUR EXPERIENCE IN WATCHING FOOTBALL .
      But when I read you trying to justify staying with the strikers we have now, I part company and do so massively. You are simply not making sense.

      1. Fair enough Jon, but what does it say to the squad when every time one of the star players gets injured for more than a few weeks he’s replaced from the market? Nketiah wasn’t put on £100K per week to be told he’s not good enough to cover for Jesus long term. We actually have 4 other goal scorers (apart from Eddie) plus Xhaka, Partey & Gabriel who chip in, so I don’t see the requirement for another dedicated striker.
        Having said that, Edu & Arteta are probably in the US right now telling Stan to take more notice of Jon and to ignore Jax.

  21. OT.
    I’m planning on taking my youngest son to a game next year and I was shocked at the prices.
    200 pounds a ticket against Brighton , 500 pounds against United!
    Surely there are cheaper options?
    I’m considering becoming a Red member again and wonder how much the tickets cost as a member?

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