Arsenal gave up their advantage in the race for the top-four this month, and Darren Bent lays blame on the club for offloading too many players and thinning the squad.
The Gunners allowed many players to leave on both temporary and permanent deals over the last 12 months, with Matteo Guendouzi, William Saliba, Ainsley Maitland-Niles, Sead Kolasinac, Calum Chambers and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang amongst those to have been permitted moves, but that left us with a select number to play out the season.
Our demise of late which allowed both Crystal Palace and Brighton to achieve wins against us, therefore allowing Spurs to take control of the race for fourth, have come amidst us losing the likes of Thomas Partey and Kieran Tierney to injury, with the manager having to rotate much of his first-choice XI in our latest outing.
Darren Bent has now claimed that we are now suffering because of our decision to thin out the playing squad.
“When you look at who Arsenal let go: Maitland-Niles, Balogun, Kolasinac, Calum Chambers,” TBR quotes Bent’s comments from TalkSPORT’s radio show. “I mean, just hold on to a couple of them.
“I know these guys might not necessarily play. But when your squad’s as thin as it is, you just need strength in depth.
“And right now, Arsenal don’t have that. Partey and Tierney, big, big misses. So, I guess, Arsenal have only got themselves to blame.”
It’s a little difficult to disagree, although given Tavares’s early form it would have been easy to think we had sufficient cover at left-back which is harsh. The Portuguese’s lack of form also convinced Arteta that his best choice would be to drop Xhaka out from central midfield into the LB role, although I’d have personally left him there and moved other defenders about if given the choice.
Which departed (on loan or otherwise) do you think should have been kept for our push to finish in the CL places?