Can Arsenal afford to not buy a striker this month? (Opinion)

Arsenal have some big decisions to make in the coming months, and January could be the best time to make them.

We have a number of issues at present. Aubameyang’s future is a mystery at present, having been dropped from the first-team squad and stripped of the captaincy before leaving for the AFCON.

We also have both other senior strikers in the final six months of their contracts in Alexandre Lacazette and Eddie Nketiah. Both will be able to discuss terms with foreign clubs over the comings months ahead of a free transfer in the summer.

Three strikers are all with their own distractions, while the inexperienced Folarin Balogun is likely to leave on loan also.

It seems as certain as ever that we need a new striker this month, as hoping to get anything near the best out of Auba would be a huge longshot.

The only excuse for not signing a new forward could be Nketiah. If Arteta truly believes in him, then he must play him this month to give him his chance, otherwise we need to not wait until the summer and bring in a goalscorer right now.

This is our best chance of earning Champions League football in years, and making it would be a huge boost to our long-term plans, including the summer transfer window.

If no changes are made now, we could have the precarious issue of replacing all three strikers in one window, which sounds like a daunting task to me…

How do you see the situation unfolding?


Tags Alexandre Lacazette Eddie Nketiah Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang


  1. Seeing that we might be losing 3 of our first team strikers in the next 6 months surely a CF should be a high priority in the transfer market if not this month then moves should already be in place for a summer move .
    For me this is where big money should be spent and to make a statement going forward next season ,out of all the names being thrown around I’m liking Islak ,great in the air ,as great pace and close control ,dare i say it abit of Henry about him .
    Obviously thats my personal choice but whatever happens the club need to go big on this one whoever they go after .

  2. Yes we definitely need a striker in January window plus a central midfielder I think with those two signings made the rest of the, season will give the likes of Martinelli to develop Then in the summer we will be in a better position to see what else may be required an understudy to Ramsdale for one and a review of the striker situation I don’t think Arsenal are too far away from becoming a major force again with the, way current squad developing

    1. We have Laca and Eddie for cover…. Our priority I think should be a midfielder. Gigi isn’t having a great time in Paris, we can temp him with a return to Epl…

  3. Absolutely rubbish asset management all round by Arteta and Edu! Look at the mess we are in.

    If we could sign a proper DM we might get away with only getting a striker at the end of the season.

    1. Unfortunately the poor decision making with player management continues.
      1. Opportunity to sell AMN in the Summer but mismanaged everything about the situation. He isn’t playing, so why didn’t they sell? Convinced him about playing time, yet never seems to play.
      2. Nketiah has been a busted flush for a while, yet club never cut bait. Couldn’t make his mark in PL, so loaned to Leeds when they were in the Championship. Wound up getting benched, and returns to Arsenal no better off. Kept him instead of selling, and this year same as all his others in PL; good against anyone outside PL, invisible against PL teams.
      3. Don’t even mention Mavro & Guendouzi loans and possible sales. We mugged ourselves getting pennies on the pound.

      Hard to believe that both Edu and Arteta have missed so badly with these decisions.

  4. If Lacazette and Nketiah make deals with other clubs this month, I believe they will try to avoid injuries. They’d likely refrain from rough challenges/ high press and make our defense suffer, since they’re supposed to be our first defender in the opposition’s area

    Whereas Balogun, Edwards and Moller are still too green to play against the opposition’s provocations/ harassments. We need to loan a CF first, so the coaches can assess him properly as they did to Odegaard and Ceballos

    We can’t afford to make another expensive mistake in the CF recruitment, otherwise we’ll get stuck with him for years. The CF is more important than other attacking players, since he should be our focal point, main pivot and main link in the front line

    1. I’ve never seen Laca or Eddie give less than 100%, may not always have great games but always put in a shift.

      I think they have more character than you are giving then credit for.

      1. As long as they play for new contracts, I’m not worried. Let’s see what’ll happen after they make deals with other clubs this month

  5. A Striker would be nice but not adding at least
    one QUALITY midfielder this window would be
    an act of gross incompetence by Edu and MA.
    Xhaka, Sambi and AMN( if he stays) just isn’t
    going to cut the midfield mustard while TP is
    away at AFCON. One of Wynaldum. Sanchez,
    Zakaria or Bruno G is a must If AFC are
    SERIOUS about Champions League futbol.

    1. Serious question…what quality midfielder would join us? When Partey returns he’ll start naturally and deservedly and MA won’t drop Xhaka and just gave him a contract extension.

      Why would a quality player join to sit bench?

      1. There lies one of the many problems with ins & outs during January for any position

        I think we will be OK for the midfield cover during AFCON, not ideal but if we had to Chambers has played Premier League football in that position, I understand from what I have read on this site that Ben White played there for Leeds, there was a call on here earlier this season for Tavares to play there to allow Tierney to come back in, I can imagine Tomi doing a job there as well and if needed I would reckon there is a clause in Azeez’s loan deal to bring him back, although he hasn’t played as much as Arteta would have liked at Portsmouth

        But meanwhile I believe we will be OK with Sambi coming in for Partey to play alongside Xhaka with AMN as first deputy rather than Elneny with Ode and/or ESR in front, Patino backing them up

        Oh, and by the way Saka can play anywhere and excel!

      2. The Xhaka situation is such a head scratcher
        and quite frankly MA’s hell or high water
        insistence for the Swiss man to be one of
        the first names on the starting 11 may cost
        Arsenal CL futbol this season. And this isn’t
        a piss on Xhaka intended post. GX has been
        in pretty decent form this season and in the
        process established a solid midfield
        partnership with TP, however the majority
        of Gunners fans worldwide along with
        countless PL pundits have already reached
        the consensus that he isn’t good enough to
        be a regular in Arsenals midfield.
        Unfortunately his leadership and experience
        is undermined by his lack of pace and
        repeated moments of madness.

        I wish EDU had the stones to walk into MA’s
        office and simply say, “Sorry Mikel but your
        boy Granit simply isnt cutting it anymore.
        Bruno G is TP new midfield partner. Accept
        it or you can follow him out the door.”

      3. Gigi currently sitting on Paris bench is quality… He will get more game time at Arsenal since his main competition is Xhaka

  6. Our defense is enough until summer I think. Also enough with wingers as well.

    Rams, Leno, Tomi, Cedric, White, Holding, Mari, Gabriel, KT, Nuno + Chambers. Should suffice.

    Saka, ESR, Martinelli, Pepe (gone for month), Nketiah. These players are often used on the wing.

    Its the midfield/striking department we are short of.

    Auba likely gone, Nketiah might be sold, Laca our only senior striker.

    Midfield is also lacking. AMN almost gone, Partey/Elneny gone for a month. Leaves us with newboy ASL, unreliable Xhaka and green Patino.

    We are one/two injuries away from disaster..

  7. We might sign a Striker , hoping a repeat of how we sign Auba😉
    But CM is a priority, Partey, Elneny, (Afcon)AMN(Loan) and Xhaka(might get red)
    We are so light in midfield

  8. I have no doubt that the acquisition of a DM and/or CM is a top priority for Edu in this window.If we can bring in Sakaria and one other quality midfielder the door will open for the sale of Xhaka in the summer.In the same way, I expect groundwork is taking place to replace Lacca and Nketiah ,but unloading Auba may be an insurmountable problem given his ludicrous earnings.In any event,the problems we are facing are no different from what is going on at many other big Clubs, with Chelsea being an example where certain players may leave on the expiry of their contracts.To suggest we are”in a mess” is to overstate our problems which are prevalent in lots of Clubs in this Country.

    1. Well said as usual Gdad, I just cant fathom
      why Arsenal wouldn’t at least tempt
      Gladbach with a cheeky offer this month
      for Zakaria. Unless the Swiss international
      has unequivocally stated he has no interest
      in joining Arsenal its a borderline negligence
      not to shake the bushes

  9. Have a look at this guy.……Mohamed Bayo of Clermont Foot in League Un. He is a really strong athletic forward and would probably like the chance to grow at Arsenal. Great physically, fassssst and he knows where the goal is. Could really fit in at Arsenal.

  10. So many fans treat football transfer wishes as if they were buying or selling cornflakes It is common now to all clubs that players let their contracts run down to zero, so they can leave and get a signing on fee and so many “conveniently” forget this common scenario and choose to blame only Edu and MA.

    AGENDA RIDDEN CHERRY PICKERS AND THEY DISGUST ME WITH THEIR DISREGARD FOR THE WHOLE PICTURE ACROSS FOOTBALL. When will some ever learn that we are but just one club among very many who are lacking power to change this “leaving player holds all the aces ” scenario? And be HONEST about it, you cherry pickers!

    1. Jon,
      This situation is becoming commonplace with many clubs now, and these clubs need to regain some sort of control.

      With 2 years left on a contract, negotiations should begin, and if at 6 months no progress is made then action should be taken.

      I would propose shifting the player to a substitution role with the club, so they can focus on players committed to a future with the club or begin exploring loan/transfer options.

      While in this role, they should be put on a transfer list with their year and a half remaining contract.

      Valuation would likely drop as a result for the club, but also for the player if they are not getting a chance to show their talents. Maybe this would encourage a transfer request from the player, rather than face their last year and a half as a bench/substitution role player.

      Until the market encouraging this type of behavior shrinks, it will continue and likely accelerate.

      The silver lining is many clubs face this situation, and while we lose revenue and valuation, we will also have an opportunity to buy and capitalize on the woes of other clubs, hopefully competitors.

        TO MY MIND, WHAT ULTIMATELY MATTERS TO US, – apart, of course, from the grasping greed that spoils so much about elite football – is that we will gain as much, if not more than we lose overall!

        The lure of our name and standing in world football works in our favour and far more FOR us than against us.OVERALL.

      2. Well said Durand. I’d love to know what focus is on players contracts that are currently between 1.5-2.5 years left by MA/Edu? I doubt there’s much focus there at all and therein lies our whole issue.

        I’d love to see an article of players currently sitting around the 2 year mark on contracts and what exactly is happening.

        1. PJ-SA
          I read last week that there are in the big 5 leagues, 250-odd players in the last 6 months of their contracts.

  11. The team is progressing well with the present crop of players and the goals have started flowing. There is no need of new prayers to disturb the flow. Infact the formation Arteta is using, he does not need a c.f. He has the young lads to deliver the goals. In the absence of Laca, He can train Smith and Okonkwo to play the hidden 9 role. He should have two in every position and keep them for a season for them to gel together. The coach has my support.

    1. Did not realise arteta was so good he could train a gk into a hidden 9. Another reason for me to like him🤣

      What next train auba to be a monster cb, with his height and pace ain’t nobody getting past him, not to mention he can temporarily blind you with his smile.

      1. Smith is like Gnabry when he was in Arsenal youth. He needed a little training to be what he is today in Bayern. Okwonkwo is playing 9. He only needs to learn how to position himself. _ going in and coming out. These players you have chosen are the same(in quality), who were bought but could not make the difference. Take Pepe and Saka for example. Arsenal strength is with the youth development.

  12. We just need to strengthen the midfield area…Xhaka and Lokonga will make us struggle as both lack pace and stamina. We need Renato Sanches and Georginio Wijnaldum on loan from PSG to sure up that midfield area, We saw from the Arsenal vs Man City and Chelsea vs Liverpool games that without pace and quality in how you play the game, top 4 will be very far from you. Renato Sanches and Georginio Wijnadum who already has premier league experience with Liverpool will hit the ground running for Arsenal. Arsenal should sign them as priority number 1.

    1. i’d rather avoid Gini. Truth is that his heart still lies with liverpool and he wouldn’t give 100% for us.

      1. @ RSH, I would want the club to sell Xhaka this January.

        I have seen enough of his mistakes to last me a lifetime.
        Since he arrived this club, we have not played champions league football.

  13. Surely we need someone who knows how to finish all the hard work from outside the box, we need someone who knows how to finish the job and is resilient to work with the flow as needed. Laca proved that he can do this job but we still need someone with the same qualities. Auba, unfortunately, is not being realistic and playing for the team in this season. That’s why I would prefer to see someone SOON!

  14. We need a defensive midfielder on loan to cover for Afcon player until they return, but we need to sign a striker bcos almost our strikers are leaving, cf is our priority

    1. Partey will only be gone a month. Xhaka can be our CDM until he comes back. Look at our schedule, we have two EPL matches left to play this month. Spurs and Burnley. One is a game where the team is just going to park the bus and attacking play will be the priority.

  15. CDM is still the priority for me, but we also need a prolific goal scorer. January is not a good time to buy players as choices are slim and prices are high. However, filling both positions could mean the difference between getting 4th or not.

  16. Can we afford it .. obviously yes as not buying a striker would cost nothing … if we want to finish above other contenders including spurs then we will need a quality striker in this window … and hope Ghana don’t make it past the group stage of afcom

  17. Getting the right player in important. Not just plugging a hole. If the right player is available Arsenal should act. The reality is the market is limited, AFCON is going on, and many players simply dont want to move right now. And even if you look at Arsenal rumors right now the only strong links are departures like AMN. So reality is that Eddie and Laca will be finishing this season with us then moving on and we’ll have the summer to build a new strike force.

    1. I wish we can offer Lacazette a 2 year extension.

      OUT: Aubameyang and Nketiah

      Loan out Balogun. Play Lacazette and Martinelli as number 9.

      Buy Kingsley Coleman and Asensio

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