Opinion: Arsenal needs to spend big this summer or forget top four

Arsenal has finished outside the top four since 2018 and every season that passes it seems they are getting farther away from the Champions League places.

The Gunners finished this season outside the European spots after ending the last two campaigns in a Europa League position.

This new low calls for serious action and a lack of European football gives the team the chance to have a better season.

But it is not by playing fewer matches that clubs achieve their aims, if that was the case teams that perpetually finish outside the European places should do better.

One way we can have a better 2021/2022 season is to bolster our squad and play each game as if it was a cup final.

Arsenal has some of the finest players in the Premier League, but that isn’t the case in every position.

With news that the likes of Granit Xhaka and Hector Bellerin could leave this summer, we might have a weakened squad at the start of next season.

Now is the time for the club’s owners to open the chequebook and sanction a significant summer spending spree.

I didn’t enjoy saying this before now, but I have to admit that money buys success in football.

We cannot keep folding our arms and watch our opponents invest in their squads and then expect ours to outperform them.

We have to outspend as many teams as we can this summer, else, we could finish next season in a worse position even though we won’t have played in Europe.

An article from Ime

Tags Arsenal transfers


  1. It’s not a question of outspending other sides, it’s about investing wisely .Basically, we simply cannot repeat the mistakes which have been a feature of our recruitment for almost a decade.

    1. Agreed. If we just buy expensive players, then our scouting department and our data analytics system will be almost useless

      1. Exactly

        with a good scouting and analytics system, a club can sign many quality players at a good price

      2. Truth be told, what is the issue with the Kroenke spending big? I think the market is generally overrated; you can hardly buy any experienced good player between 22-28 years that is not expensive. €40,000 slammed on Neve is already on high. Even champio.ship players are now costly. If we have top quality player to sell they can’t go for €20,000. Full backs can be slightly cheaper but not quality midfielders or strikers with pedigree.

        1. There are many overrated players in EPL, so we need to find the underrated ones. Liverpool got Robertson for 8 M from Hull, Wijnaldum for 23 M from Newcastle, Mane for 34 M from Soton and Milner for free

          1. Hun, you have a point but i doubt if Edu is good enough to identify this underrated players you talked about.. My fingers are crossed waiting to see if Arteta and Edu really knows the players we need and not the ones we want. One thing is certain, we need good defensive and a creative midfielders. The latter to partner Smith Roles.

    2. I must admit I’m excited about the level of clearcut we’re rumoured to be after.

      Xhaka for Neves, and Bellerin for the young German Ridle Baku, (he looks great though very attack minded and needs some defensive coaching). Video I just watched of him taking out Guendouzzi 🙂
      23 years old a German U21 International and photos online of him with brother outside the Emirates is always a bonus, ( he’s apprently a fan).

  2. Every season its always about spend big or we will relegate

    Its all about signing the right players and not just go for every big tag player

    Not every player cost 50 or 100m

    there are some very good players that below 10 or 30m

    Need a good scouting system

  3. Value for money is the answer, otherwise you will spend £200million and still struggle. The players we buy must be able to slot seamlessly into the Manager’s system and I hope by now our Manager knows the system and the type of players he needs.

    1. Thats the million dollar question for me – Does our coach know how he wants to play? Clubs whose coaches have a clear identity are usually successful in the transfer market. A big example is Klopp at Liverpool turning Wijnaldum, Henderson, Robertson, Mane and so many others into superstars.

      Arsenal’s problem has never been spending money. The Kroenke have spent alot. However, Most of the money has not been well spent. And its down to the quality of the coaches AFC have. If a coach doesnt have a clear, tested and workable identity, the club usually struggle to identify and bring in the right kind of players.

      1. It is not a matter of spending “big”, but as Grandad stated spending “well”. The available transfer budget should be used to address the areas of greatest deficiencies in the squad. Most people on here seem to know that midfield is the highest priority, followed by RB, a back up LB and a goal keeper. Yet we read of Arsenal being associated with “shiny” wingers all the time.
        As Zert asks does the manager know how he wants Arsenal to play? Can anybody explain Arteta’s style of play, what types of players he requires to play this style and if he is capable of best utilizing the available player assets by coaching this style of play.

  4. We should buy good players with good. I think the new ownership will help. Because the current owners will not spend the money period

  5. Exactly if we don’t spend Big we should forget it. If you spend big you definitely will get good results. New ownership, new strategies. Let’s say Keronke out.

  6. Good players you play to be in league, quality players you are playing for titles, outstanding players will win you titles.

  7. How about we lower our expectations to premier league survival.

    Player sales are the sole means of transfer funds this window so forget even the half-decent signins happening before August.

    This club can only succeed if a manager is capable of making the best possible sh*t pie. Sadly, Arteta can’t make it.

  8. £100 million well and wisely spent is what we need for now. We are not in European games so we need value for money. And we can cover that spending with sales.

    GK – Onana. Very cheap at the moment and a great goalkeeper. No brainer really. Mat Ryan as back up. All depends on Onana’s ban. If its upheld, we can still rely on Leno until next year. Leno sale should bring us £20 millions and buying Onana/Ryan shouldn’t cost more than £10 million in total.

    CB – we are well packed here. Mavro had excellent season and was called upon the Greece national team. And their team is packed with defenders!

    LB – back up/challenge to Tierney. Shouldn’t cost too much. Doig and Romain Perraud seem like nice prospects. Sosa/Wijndal quoted around £15 million. Great, attacking FB’s.

    RB – Bellerin sale (maybe even Cedric’s sale) should bring us £20 million + whatever Cedric is worth. There’s a lot of good RB’s available right now. Emerson or Dest, Baku, Celik.. All likely available for less than £25 millions. I didn’t count Lamptey/Aarons as they would cost a lot more, being English an all.

    Midfield – Partey, Willock and hopefully Azeez on the wings should be playing. Elneny could be sold should we were to bring in that Belgian kid from Anderlecht. ~10 million here and there.

    Xhaka likely to be sold, hopefully closer to £20 million. That should be invested for either Neves or Bissouma. My dream would be actually have both as Bissouma and Partey will be gone for ACON.

    Neves £30-35m, Bissouma £30-35m. These could be mostly covered with the sales of Xhaka 15-20m and AMN 20-25m.


    Many options available again, but Matheus Pereira from WBA sticks out. Can play LW/CAM/RW, brings in creativity, goal scoring threat, great dribbler. Can’t see WBA asking too much being relegated and all. Hopefully Willian will make way and Nelson sent out on loan.

    Then the striking department. This is tricky one. Nketiah and Lacazette must be sold unless they sign extensions. Auba probably will stick around so a new striker should be brought in.

    Seems like we’ve missed out on Daka but there are other options too. Andre Silva, Dusan Vlahovic, Donyell Malen?, Paul Onuachu.. Hopefully this will be sorted quickly because we can’t leave 2 of our strikers leave on a free again.

  9. Spend big or spend little are only meaningful if we buy the right players. It’s simple, the ‘spend big’ or ‘spend little’ players have to be better and perform better than the ‘ordinary’ and ‘mediocre’ players we have. We need a midfield maestro. We thought it was Buendia, but he blanked us, and that might be good because Nabil Fekir is still available for a lot less than Buendia and he is a whole lot better. It seems there is an interest in Manor Solomon, Ruben Neves, Yves Bissouma, maybe Julian Brandt, a right back to replace the outgoing Xhaka, a cover left back too. We have Martinelli and Balogun vying to be goalscorers too. IF, and a massive IF, Arteta and Edu don’t f**k up and get the whole window wrong, and that is a distinct possibility, if they ‘see’ who we really need and add some dominance and creativity, then maybe we will perform and entertain. Mind you that’s if Arteta doesn’t suffocate the creativity out of them, with his non stop micro management, like a suffocating mother/father.

  10. Hunn, I think the market is generally overrated; you can hardly buy any experienced good player between 22-28 years that is not expensive. Even champio.ship players are now costly.

  11. Truth be told, what is the issue with the Kroenke spending big? I think the market is generally overrated; you can hardly buy any experienced good player between 22-28 years that is not expensive. €40,000 slammed on Neve is already on high. Even champio.ship players are now costly. If we have top quality player to sell they can’t go for €20,000. Full backs can be slightly cheaper but not quality midfielders or strikers with pedigree.

  12. ” money buys success” so how do you explain spending £117m on two players i e. Pepe and Partey plus their huge salaries and we’re still waiting for them to justify the spending. As Grandad rightly says money should be spent wisely and we don’t have a good track record do we? Willian, Ceballos, Auba’s new contract etc. etc.

    1. Nicolas Pepe gets unwarranted criticism, due to his price (not his fault). His output per games played has improved over his 2 seasons at Arsenal, despite being dropped by Arteta after scoring in previous games. In season 2020/21 he scored 10 goals in 29 games in the League and 6 goals from 13 games I the Europa League.
      Thomas Partey had no pre season, had to integrate into a new country, club and the EPL and has suffered niggling injuries. Class is permanent and given a good DM to partner him in midfield he will thrive.
      Yes Arsenal has bought poorly over the years, but these two players are not examples.

  13. Great. Spending big decides our league position next year.
    If only it had been like that for the past 10 years, then we would not be where we are. We have been one of the highest spenders, but very unfairly, clubs like Liverpool and Spurs, who have spent much less have overtaken us.

  14. DJ,

    Couldn’t agree more with your points and players
    that you’ve highlighted. I would personally LOVE to
    see AFC bring in the following players….

    Bissouma £20M + Nkietah
    Neves £20M + AMN
    A. S. Lokonga £20M
    Pereria £15M
    Mazraoui/Celik £15-20M
    Doig £5M

    And as you pointed out DJ all of these quality
    additions are more than affordable if Edu and MA
    are aggressive in moving out the following players

    Bellerin £20M
    Xhaka £20M
    Guendouzi £15M
    El Neny £10M
    Soares £8M
    Willian £5M
    *Willock £25-30M (like Joe but don’t know if he fits
    the MA preferred tactical set up)

    Although somewhat rudimentary, the net spending
    for this scenario of ins and outs is almost a wash.
    All the positions of need substantially upgraded
    and the moving on of those players to hopefully
    greener Futbol pastures.

    CF: Laca/Auba/Balogun
    LW: Pepe/Martinelli/ESR
    #10: ESR/Perreria
    RW: Saka/Pereria
    CM: Neves/Lokonga/Ayeez
    DM: Partey/Bissouma
    LB: Tierney/Doig
    LCB: Gabby/Mari
    RCB: Saliba/Holding/Mavro
    RB: Mazraoui/Chambers
    KP: Leno/Ryan

    1. ACE, if Steve Bruce can use Joe Willock in “his tactical set up” to score 8 goals in 15 games and Mikel Arteta can’t, that says more about Arteta than it says about Willock. Keeping Willock allows funds to be allocated elsewhere and retains a home grown player.
      Thomas Partey is a box to box midfielder, that is why Yves Bissouma is required to partner him to allow Partey to drive forward with the ball. This midfield combination would provide Arsenal with a competitive combative midfield. I agree with you on Matheus Pereira. Neves and Lokonga will depend on available funding, and are a lower priority to the other positions you have nominated like RB and back up LB.

  15. We need to spend SMART not big to be able to fight for the top 4.

    16/17 Worse window with 100m wasted
    40m mustafi while hummels 31m
    40m xhaka while kante cost 32m
    18m perez while salah cost 13m

    18m sokratis
    18m welbeck while mane cost 20m same window
    willian sign on fee+ big wages
    Buying 2 strikers for combined 100m when we only play one striker. Could have bought bernando silva with that money.

  16. Funny how all these names from all corners of the world are mentioned but it appears that some have forgotten the fundamental home grown rule. If I remember rightly you are only allowed 17 non HG players out of squad of 25.

    So people saying that we must sell Bellerin, Willock, AMN, Nelson and Eddie must remember they have to be replaced with further HG players. So your looking at spending big money for these types of players unless we can promote from the youth team.

    Sorry to put a dampner on you Fantasy Football transfer lists.

  17. i still would argue that we also need a top class dead ball specialist, something that has been missing from our team for a long time. i know we have some players who think they are dead ball specialists. but just look at the ratio of goals scored against the amount of shots taken by our committee of players over every dead ball.give me a ward prouse please.

  18. Its the same story every year. First fix the club and go with gradual rise. If spending big was a quick fix, we could have finished top 4 already. Spending on right players is the key, and I just don’t trust us with it. Rather move out old deadwood, build a young exciting team, and in a year or two we will be top 4.Luiz, Bellerin, Xhaka, Willock, Willian, Nelson, Torreira, AMN, Kolasinac, Laka and may be Leno needs to all go. Trim the squad so additions can be made well. Get 2 midfielders, and a ST, young and hunrgy

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