Have Arsenal done enough? And is our team ready to face Man City?

Did we do enough to repair the squad this summer? by Konstantin Mitov

Okay so transfer deadline day is here and like many others, it looks to be a quiet one unless some ridiculous bombshell drops which the media will surely pick upon. So we brought in 5 players who are likely to feature, so did we do enough?

Bernd Leno joined us to help improve on a position that cost us a lot of points last season. We also saw a much better Cech in pre-season which might be due to the competition. I have a feeling Petr will be the one between the sticks against City. And it looks like this is the end for Ospina at Arsenal. After seeing Chelsea drop 70 million for a keeper I never heard of playing for Bilbao, I think we’ve done quite decent in this department for the crazy prices being thrown around.

In defence Sokratis comes to steady the ship, but his pace is a major issue. We won’t have to wait long at all to see him test it out against the lightning attack of City! The problem is that even though Mustafi looked decent in pre-season, he is still a liability. We gambled with slow defenders like Mertesacker and it sometimes worked and others it backfired, even though the german was a very intelligent player.

It is surprising to me that we loaned out Chambers. I think right now he is better than Holding and we did give him a new deal, then we shipped him with the newcomers. We obviously have Mavropanos as well, and Koscielny might return from injury mid-season, but I think in central defence there is a clear lack of experienced options.

On the right we added Lichtsteiner as competition for Bellerin, who sadly looked pretty poor again in pre-season, but I fear he will start against City. Another major problem with Bellerin is the fact that we lack a true winger to support him in defence, so when he moves forward we’re often exposed at the back. On the left, the injury of Kolasinac is a problem and so is the age of Nacho, who has been Mr. consistent for Arsenal. We can cover with Maitland-Niles though so this should be alright.

Overall the defence continues to be the missing piece in our puzzle. But defence is not just the back, it includes how the team behaves without the ball, the pressing, and of course the help it gets from the midfield, where we’ve added 2 interesting players – Guendouzi and Torreira. Do you think any of them will start against City? I think the young frenchman was the most impressive player in the summer and deserves a spot.

The uruguayan on the other hand is finally that defensive midfield player who supposedly shouldn’t want to be number 10, although he wears 11. If I had to chose the starting 11, the 3 in midfield I’d pick would be Torreira, Ramsey and Guendouzi. It looks like the Welshman is staying, as Chelsea took Kovacic on loan and literally no time to replace Ramsey if he leaves. I have a slight feeling that we might put Xhaka instead of Matteo and go for experience but I so much liked the youngsters forward thinking passes, I hope we’re willing to risk it as he did have a full pre-season.

Up top, the three candidates are Ozil, Laca and Auba. All three looked sharp and they will need to carry the squad this season. It is extremely interesting if we’ll give Ozil the armband. Honestly who do you pick for captain. Cech, Nacho, Ramsey and Ozil will be my shortlist, with neither being real captain material honestly, but I want a player who will be a regular in the squad.

It is extremely interesting what style of play will we put out this season. The friendlies showed glimpses of a more direct play and periods of the old Arsenal showing through, which is understandable considering the amount of time we were stuck with Wenger. I think we have quality and apart from Liverpool and City, there isn’t that much more of a quality gap between us and the other top 6 teams. We need to improve defensively and better our away record from last year. If we do this I think that top 4 will be on the cards. For Emery’s first season, this will be good enough.

Hopefully we’ll get to a positive start. Have a lovely end of the week!



  1. Lupe says:

    No we haven’t done enough, we still need a center back and a winger. Why is that arsenal never try to get wingers, man city had 3 wingers in sterling, sane and bernado silva and they still added mahrez. Liverpool still added shaqiri to salah and mane. We have improved our squad this season but i just wish the club can wake up and realise that wingers are very important for top teams as most of our opponents will always play deep even pack the bus against us but we expect to still pass our way through the tight spaces. And for those who keep saying clubs don’t use wingers again and that the term winger is old, its a big lie because they forget that there are different types of wingers. A winger’s job is not only to cross the ball because a modern winger is multidimensional and unpredictable, they are also direct, can score and assists and they can take on players individually not just relying on sideways passing, a good example is salah. Remember that there is a difference between a player whose best position is on the wings to a player who can manage to play on the wings but isn’t as effective or comfortable. Look around europe and study all the exciting teams, barca has dembele but still bought malcom, bayern have robben, ribery, coman and now gnabry, chelsea have hazard, willian, pedro and even that youngster that destroyed bellerin, real madrid have asensio, bale, vazquez, but they still added vinicius, psg have neymar, di maria and mbappe etc. The only natural winger we have is nelson, we don’t seem to produce any, even the ones we had before all wanted to play other positions like chamberlain and walcott. Iwobi too says his best position is in the middle, welbeck isn’t a proper winger, mkhitaryan’s best postion is in the middle, aubameyang’s best postion is as a striker, just look at his goal ratio after he moved from the wings to the striker role after lewandoski sale, ozil’s output significantly drops when playing on the wings. I just hope emery realises this quickly and changes this trend so we don’t continue to struggle against defensive and organised teams.

    1. Khadii says:

      Even westham just got a winger from us

    2. gotanidea says:


      I think Emery wanted a good winger since he joined Arsenal, because he always use the prowess of Neymar and Mbappe at PSG to break the opponent’s defense

      But his problem is the 50M transfer budget. It’s scary if you think how much money the board have stolen from the club’s budget and how bad the club’s business is being handled by their executives (Gazidis and his minions)

    3. Sean Williams says:

      Totally right Lupe. We could have bought the best young winger in Europe. Leon Bailey. How we can play without a specialised winger is beyond me. Sick in the original sense of the word. Also Leicester bought Caglar Soyuncu for £19 mill. Were we not after him all summer? We then loaned Calum Chambers to Fulham. Are we not supposed to have noticed? We need a padded cell for Gazidis, Kroenke and Board.

  2. st sass says:

    thanks for the optimism, defence would be solved and we naming top four plus Europa cup. coyg

  3. McLovin says:

    Our wingers this season will be:


    Sad, because NONE of the players mentioned are wingers, except Nelson.

  4. Sean says:

    @Lupe – very good points agree with near all of it.

    Again retyping what Lupe said in a winger & quality CB is all that is missing but we have to be honest with ourselves that our window was over after Guendouzi… not the strongest squad but should have enough until January window.

    Always 2 or 3 short of a complete squad.

    Unless Stan releases money to get the fans onside we might aswell just talk talking about Sundays game with City, who are far superior than us in every deptarment, so should be no surprise if we lose. City are in great form & they have not took their foot of the gas at all, we just need another few windows to catch up & for Emery to settle in etc…

    1. A.ball08 says:

      Rome wasn’t built in a day
      Its our new man’s first transfer window
      I am sure there will be more to one in the next window
      He’s still accusing the squad and pre season has been short.
      I am sure he wants more like like us but deals seem to be more complex now days especially with the vast amounts of money being asked for average players
      A big upgrade from last season.lets see if our new man can coach and being more tactically astute then the last 10 seasons.
      Keep believing

      1. Sean Williams says:

        Hi A.ball08
        I appreciate your kind optimism but after more than 10 Kroenke years we have always been 2 top players short of a challenge. People believed the world was flat once. It isn’t. I’ll root for the team and I’m sure we will get some good results but in the longer term of this season we may not have the squad to challenge.

        1. A.ball08 says:


          Like you the feeling of not taking it to the last few games to see if we can win the title.
          That excitement or anticipation has been missing for.many a year
          To know it is over by Jan has been the downer
          But I don’t expect us to be in that position this season but it would be nice.
          Sad to say but for now I would like us to be challenging for a top 4 spot….how times have changed…now I am wishing for a top 4 spot

  5. BenardoM says:

    All other teams have 3-4 experienced CBs while we only have 2 whom I’m doubting if they will last till Dec without Injury.We need another experienced CB to be able to challenge other teams.

  6. Ronny says:

    5m for perez?! Are we stupid or desperate?

    1. McLovin says:

      Both it seems.

      Well at least it’s not Wenger managing us, we know how that would end against City. With Emery we have a fighting chance.

      1. ken1945 says:

        McLovin are you referring to the fa cup semi final before we beat Chelsea in the final?
        Or could it be the community shield?
        Beating both premier league champions, we showed that the fighting chance actually became a reality…. remember?
        That’s right, we’ve done it before and we’ll do it again.

        By the way, who sold Perez?
        Wenger or Emery?
        Stupid or desperate?

  7. gotanidea says:

    I predict Emery would use this 4-2-3-1 line-up, because Arsenal will play at the Emirates:

    Bellerin . Sokratis . Mustafi . Maitland-Niles
    ………….Ramsey …… Torreira
    Mkhitaryan …….. Ozil ……….. Aubameyang

    Will Ozil be able to provide perfect through balls to the three high quality attackers? I’m curious to see that

    1. Prince of Ihievbe says:

      Good line up. But I think is will be good for playing mid to bottom table teams at the Emirates. For tough opposition like Man City, it is better to sacrifice Mkhitaryan for Xhaka or Guendouzi.

      1. Hayzed says:

        Sacrifice Mikhtaryan for Xhaka or Guendouzi when both are not winger and can never play as a winger especially Xhaka.
        Look at the formation very well,gotanidea deployed Mikhtaryan as a Right winger not as a midfielder.

        1. Red Dragon says:

          He could play 4-2-2-2 better known as 4-4-2 with 2 attacking mids

  8. CorporateMan says:

    £70m spend is too little for a club of the status of Arsenal hoping to get back into the CL. The owners of the club need to understand that you must break an egg to make an omelette.

    1. Kroenke already took out a monstrous loan to buyout Usmanov’s £550M worth of shares. His priorities are on repaying that loan now and we will be lucky if the club is not the one that ends up footing the bills. That buyout was really worst case scenario as it drags us back to the Emirates stadium loan repayments days.

  9. Venceslas says:

    you are all pessimistic guys, we have a good coach, we added good players and a mix with the old. we will attack man city and we will win this game. Umery will have his 1st win in his 1st game

  10. Sarmmie says:

    Does Ramsey always have to start?
    A player who loses the ball a lot and is not a great ball winner against man city doesn’t sound like a good idea to me. I’ll prefer torreira(very good ball winner and tidy in possession) and xhaka with guendouzi(two players that can keep the ball well and are not bad with tackles)
    Of the other midfielders, Ramsey’s most likely to score, but think of how many goals city will score if they’re able to overrun the midfield cos one of our cms forgot his primary job.

    1. GunnerJack says:

      Is Ramsey fully fit? I’m not sure he’ll even start. I think he tripped over a blade of grass and sprained his calf about a week ago – if so that’ll be another 3 weeks on the treatment table.

  11. Joseph says:

    I have no hope in the current squad because certain players should by now have been put on transfer, Welbeck, chambers, Xaca, mustafi , lacazzette ( he’s a shadow of himself can we have that for another season ? ) am happy Perez left. Looking at the squad we are light years awaya from winning any trophy this and yet to come seasons. I do not know the post Wenger policies and directions asto what we want arsenal to achieve.

    1. Red Dragon says:

      Buy a new team? Who’s s ever done that successfully? Clearly you play way too much Fifa and FYI lightyears don’t measure time.

  12. ACE says:

    Well my worthless 2 cents.

    Torreria, Guendouzi, Leno and Lichsteiner were
    all quality additions to the squad and will play
    meaningful minutes for the Gunners as the
    season unfolds.

    Socratis brings veteran leadership and steel to
    the Arsenal back line but I honestly dont see
    the Greek being an improvement on Mustafi
    who struggled mightily last season. His lack
    of pace, much like BFG will be repeatedly
    exposed against the leagues best attacks.

    Loaning out Chambers is definitely a head
    scratcher as it appears Emery and Co. have
    decided against bringing in a direct
    replacement..Soyuncu would of made perfect
    sense here imho, especially considering what
    LCC are reportedly paying 4 him.

    The Ramsey saga hasn’t intrigued me one bit.
    The Welshman extending his contract is
    nowhere near “The best bit of transfer business”
    fof the club as many on this site have posited.
    Ill stick with my overall assessment that
    although a good player Arsenals midfield is
    more balanced and effective without Ramsey’s
    flair for the annoying and selfish style of place.

    One of Bailey, Nerez, Mahrez(before City),
    Lozano should of been signed early in the
    window. It remains absolutely confounding
    that Arsenal continually refuse to sign a quality winger. Nelson, although a precocious talent
    isnt ready to contribute at the necessary level
    and Welbeck/Iwobi arent traditional wingers
    that dont offer anything from the flanks.

    The inability to offload the likes of Jenkinson,
    DW, Campbell, Ospina has been frustrating but
    a transparent reminder of how poorly this club
    has conducted business via contracts for
    average players over the years.

    Decent window for the Gunners but not enough
    collective quality brought in 2 move the needle.
    5th place finish @ best for a supposed “BIG”
    club that sans a few WC talents upfront is
    trending toward the middle of the EPL table
    rather than competing for English and
    European glory.

  13. ozziegunner says:

    It should be remembered, as pointed out by Martin Keown that Unai Emery has say 22 new players to get to know. Notwithstanding that Unai Emery apparently prepared very well by presenting a dossier on all the Arsenal players he inherited to the Arsenal board, he has only had the off season to coach and prepare them in the way he wants them to play. To implement his philosophy of structured organized play and change the laissez-faire approach of Arsene Wenger wil take time. Pep Guardiola is in his third year with Man City, so Emery will need time.
    Hopefully Emery will make Arsenal difficult to beat and have the strike power to win games.

  14. LENOhappy says:

    Being an arsenal fan is not easy,I keep updating the sky sport app,to know if we’ve signed anyone

  15. pires says:

    I think we overall have a good squad.Not enough to challenge for the title but for the Top 4 spot it’s enough.

  16. Innit says:

    Loaning off chambers and selling perez and not signing anyone today doesn’t sound too smart
    Lets hope we sign someone within the next 3 hours

  17. LoySupremo says:

    If they dont sign , I for one will be really pissed off. They will struggle this season if nothing happens within the next 2hrs 15 mins.

  18. barryglik says:

    Welbeck to Southampton
    according to Lads are broke.
    15m and one chip butty fee.
    That surprise late edition is still on the cards.
    Lets have some fun 🙂
    Besides Kev is not in the house right now 🙂

  19. Midkemma says:

    …The Good…

    Competition for Bellerin, the lad burst on the scenes and over time he has lost that competition and the coaching wasn’t great for developing def players, Lich I feel is a really important signing to help Bellerin progress while also being a squad player.

    Guendouzi looks a bargain, YouTube didn’t do this lad justice as he looks an amazing talent, just needs that experience which he’ll get if he keeps up the hards work. I may go as far as to say this may turn out to be the signing which shapes our CM for years to come.

    Torreira is another CM and from YouTube and other clips along with WC, he looks like the player we have needed for the past decade, add in Guendouzi and I am starting to see a CM2 form which could have the power of 3 men.

    Torreira and Guendouzi are both young and they are both deep players, this could lead to a resurgence in 4231 over 433 for Emery, freeing up a place for Ozil to have his free ACM role. At least he would have 2 CM behind him who was capable of winning the ball back and passing it forward instead of sideways or back to CBs.

    Leno… Glad we got him as I do not trust Ospina, I was saying all through the window that once we got a new GK coach then Cech would show some of his old form again, I do not think it is the competition from Leno that has pushed Cech but new coaching and his own personal desire to be the best he can. I hope Leno develops into a top WC GK, I do, I truly do! I can’t help but think currently that Leno is a lesser Szcz… Which we sold for less than what we bought Leno for, bad business.

    Sokratis… What was the point in this signing again? We spent on this player and for what reason? I would rather have dragged Per back from retirement. I will try and keep an open mind when I see him play so I can eat my words if he performs, up to him now I guess… I hope I am wrong but this feels like a total waste of funds, I do not think Sven picked right here and our recruitment teams needs a slap around the face for this, this is worse than Wenger wanting Evans who at least had EPL experience to deal with the pace… poorly.

    I did have hope that Chambers could force his way into the starting lineup sooner with such an average player ahead of him, then Gazidis and Co feel it is right to loan him out… Chambers also has the added benefit of adaptability, he played the DM in preseason and he looked good in that role, not someone who has played years there but he has all the skillsets to be 3rd choice for that while being backup for CB… Ideal bench player. I doubt it is Emery who wanted him gone as Emery has been positive about Chambers, if he didn’t want Chambers then I could very well imagine Emery treating Chambers like Wilshere, there is the door and sorry you don’t want to fight for your place.

    I still feel that the board are interfering too much and this is Gazidis.
    Gazidis is not a great CEO and he is quite poor at investing in the future, he has proven this countless times over the past decade, next signing AFC need to make is getting a top CEO who will have the footballs to act like a champion in Jan window.

  20. Go ask Alice... says:

    Nice article Konstantin, very good. I agree with almost everything you said, that’s not why I think its good though, I think you made interesting observations and your writing is improving. The only part I wouldn’t be sure on is Ozil with Laca and Auba. I’d prefer a front three if we went with the midfielders you picked, it would mean the outside strikers would have a little more defensive duties than say, if Ozil played behind the two forwards. I don’t know what shape you meant your forward line, but those names suggest to me a play-maker and then two CF’s.

    The defence is worrisome but I hope Emery’s tactics can make it less so. It was good mentioning the two CM newcomers after speaking about our perceived problems at the back, they are gonna play a part in how solid we’ll be.

  21. Sean Williams says:

    There is no way that either Unai Emery or Sven Mislintat will be satisfied. This is a ‘Greedy Stan’ warning. He’s a clever ****. He knows that the fans will stick behind Emery. Rightly so too. So the seats will fill. In the long term though Kroenke is a self-absorbed man. I hope as he ages he becomes more philanthropic and begins to love the Arsenal like we do. Maybe his son will get the Arsenal bug? At the moment our defence is slow and not good enough to make a PL challenge. That is the long-term prognosis. In the short term we may get some good results.

    1. Red Dragon says:

      A lot of great defenders are quite slow, the problem is playing the defence too far from the GK. Athletico make Godin look like a monster because they realised that even the best can struggle when facing quick talented players. Ramos, Chiellini, Thiago Silva to name a few, all look suspect when defense is too high. If Emery defends closer to goal you’ll realise why Sokratis was bought.

      1. Sean Williams says:

        Hi Red Dragon
        I hope you are right. I hope that Unai Emery really leads us to a challenge. If Torreira and Guendouzi can play from deep and cover our back four and if Bellerin will actually put the emphasis on defending. I want to be wrong.

  22. Kenya 001 Arsenal says:

    Oooh yeah we are much prepared full pre season depends on how the boys turn up on sunday.

  23. I hope Iwobi is going to prove me wrong I he is not a player to get excited about and i dont really see how he fits in, we just sold probably our best winger to west ham, for me Perez was a very good player, Wenger treated him very badly every time he played he was our best player and he still is a very good player worth loads more than they have paid for him, wenger bought him then made him a scapegoat for other less hardworking players.
    Good luck Lucas.

Comments are closed

Top Blog Sponsors
JustArsenal Top Ten UK Blogs