Do Arsenal have the strongest team in the Premier League?
Squad depth is a well debated topic around the Emirates, with some fans and professionals in agreeing that this Arsenal squad is the strongest seen for the Gunners since the Invincible era.
Arsene Wenger’s invincible team was a squad that arguably had everything, it was very much a team set up for great success. However after 2005, things began to drop off and our squad of greats began to fall one by one. A few years down the line and the Arsenal squad held was nowhere near the amount of talent that it boasted just half a decade earlier.
After years of disappointment and struggle, seeing our best players sold to finance our new stadium, Arsenal have finally returned to financially strong ways these last few seasons. Strong finances make a far more attractive side and Arsenal are now able to say that we once again have a strong side, capable of competing on all fronts.
You may have seen Sky Sports pundit and former Arsenal player Charlie Nicholas’ latest comments on Arsenal’s squad depth. Nicholas argues that the Gunners now have a number of players in and around the first team squad that should be looking to capitalise on other’s poor form or injuries.
Arsenal’s squad depth is very strong these days, with Wenger able to field almost three starting XI’s in theory. We saw tonight how Arsene Wenger only really had to name a few experienced Gunners in the side, with only Olivier Giroud a first team regular on the bench. Arsenal won 2-0 and although it wasn’t entirely comfortable at all times, a weakened Gunners side still surpassed Reading with relative ease. Tonight also wasn’t the first time Wenger has reshuffled the team this season. Wenger has already experimented with a bit of rotation this season, with key players being rested and rotated throughout the Premier League, EFL Cup and the Champions League.
I think that there’s little doubt in whether we have the team with the most squad depth. We have a nice balance between youth and experience and I’m pleased to say that most of our squad is also full of players that with hard work, could replace each other in the starting eleven. That makes healthy competition for places in the team.
But whether or not we have the best squad in the Premier League? I still think that’s up for debate. Manchester City, United and Chelsea all have world class players in their respective sides too, whilst of course you cannot deny that Spurs and Liverpool have also pushed past the boundary for the Premier League in recent seasons. It’s difficult to say which one of the ‘top four’ has the strongest squad, because each team has strengths and weakness in each area. For Arsenal, our area is still attack in my opinion.
But one thing that is for sure, is that Arsenal certainly do now have a side with enough squad depth and quality to get back amongst the big Guns and compete on all fronts.