Opinion – Mikel Arteta’s Top Five Signings for Arsenal

Since taking the helm at Arsenal, Mikel Arteta has orchestrated several significant transfers, each contributing to the team’s resurgence and redefinition. Arteta has been a real game changer in North London, winning three trophies including the FA Cup, and leading Arsenal back to the Champions League, let’s take a look at the top five signings that have helped the Spaniard achieve this.

5. Gabriel Jesus:

Gabriel Jesus’s arrival at Arsenal marked a pivotal moment in Mikel Arteta’s overhaul of the team’s attacking prowess. After narrowly missing out on Champions League qualification, Arteta wasted no time in bolstering the Gunners’ frontline by luring Jesus from Manchester City for a substantial fee of £45 million.

From the outset, Jesus made his presence felt, injecting a newfound energy and dynamism into Arsenal’s attacking manoeuvres. Despite grappling with intermittent injuries, his impact on the pitch has been undeniable. While perhaps not starting as many games as some of his counterparts, such as Martinelli, Havertz, and Saka, Jesus has consistently delivered when called upon.

His impressive tally of 19 goals and 15 assists underscores his value as a potent attacking threat. What sets Jesus apart is his versatility, seamlessly transitioning between positions on the field, whether deployed on the left or right wing or operating centrally. This adaptability has provided Arteta with tactical flexibility, enabling him to exploit opposing defences effectively.

4. Kai Havertz:

Kai Havertz’s transition from Chelsea to Arsenal was met with initial challenges, as he adapted to life in north London amidst scrutiny and criticism. However, under Mikel Arteta’s guidance, the German persisted, demonstrating resilience and determination in the face of adversity.

Arteta’s decision to recruit Havertz from Chelsea reflected his strategic vision for Arsenal, recognizing the German’s versatility as a valuable asset capable of filling multiple roles across the pitch. Despite early struggles, Arteta maintained unwavering faith in Havertz, trusting in his ability to deliver when it mattered most.

The turning point came as Havertz began to showcase his true potential, proving his worth with pivotal goals that highlighted his rise in form. Notably, his contribution to Arsenal’s 2-3 victory over North London rivals, Spurs, shows he can be the man for the big occasion.

Throughout the second half of the season, Havertz has been nothing short of exceptional, consistently finding the back of the net and playing a key role in Arsenal’s attack. His tally of 12 Premier League goals is a respectable return for his maiden season in Arsenal red, and his highest Premier League tally to date.

3. Gabriel Magalhaes:

Gabriel Magalhaes’s journey to Arsenal was a testament to Mikel Arteta’s keen eye for talent and strategic planning. Despite interest from top clubs like Everton and Manchester United, it was Arteta and Arsenal who secured the signature of the Brazilian centre-back from LOSC Lille in a £27 million deal.

Upon his arrival at the Emirates Stadium, Gabriel wasted no time in making his mark, signing a long-term contract that signalled his commitment to the club’s vision. Arteta’s trust in the defender quickly became evident as Gabriel emerged as one of the manager’s most dependable leaders on the pitch.

Throughout the season, Gabriel has established himself as a formidable presence at the heart of Arsenal’s defence. His ability to read the game, make crucial interceptions, and marshal the backline has been instrumental in Arsenal’s defensive solidity.

But Gabriel’s contributions haven’t been limited to his defensive duties alone. He has also demonstrated his attacking threat, chipping in with important goals, such as against title rivals, Liverpool and securing a brace against Crystal Palace earlier in the season.

Gabriel’s defensive prowess has been pivotal in Arsenal’s impressive record of 15 clean sheets in the 23/24 season. Gabriel, Saliba and David Raya’s combined efforts have helped Arsenal secure clean sheets and the best defence in the league for 2023/24 and ultimately propelled Raya to clinch the Golden Glove award ahead of England number one, Jordan Pickford.

2. Declan Rice:

Arsenal’s Declan Rice stands on the pitch during a friendly football match between the Major League Soccer (MLS) All-Star team and Arsenal FC (Photo by Stefani Reynolds / AFP) (Photo by STEFANI REYNOLDS/AFP via Getty Images)

Declan Rice’s arrival at Arsenal in the summer of 2023 marked a significant milestone in the club’s recent history. Fresh off leading West Ham to Europa Conference League glory as their captain, it was no secret that Rice was destined for the Emirates, the UK’s leading online bookmakers had the Englishman short priced and Arteta was always going to get his man.

While his hefty price tag made him the most expensive player in Arsenal’s history, Rice wasted no time in justifying the investment. From the moment he stepped onto the pitch, it was evident why the Gunners were willing to splash the cash for his services. Rice quickly established himself as the linchpin of Arsenal’s midfield, becoming the first name on the team sheet and often the standout performer on the pitch.

What sets Rice apart is his ability to dictate play with unparalleled precision and vision. His tactical awareness and astute positioning enable him to control the tempo of the game, dictating the flow of play and orchestrating his teammates like the real leader he is.. Moreover, Rice’s work rate is second to none, covering immense ground across the pitch and tirelessly pressing opponents to regain possession.

Rice’s impact extends beyond his defensive duties, as evidenced by his significant contributions in the attacking third. With 7 goals and 8 assists in the Premier League, Rice has proven to be a potent goal threat and creative force, further solidifying his status as a transformative signing for Arsenal.

1. Martin Odegaard:

Martin Odegaard’s arrival at Arsenal in August 2021 marked a turning point in Mikel Arteta’s tenure, with the Norwegian maestro emerging as the crown jewel of the manager’s transfer dealings. After an impressive loan spell, Arteta successfully persuaded Odegaard to make his move to the Emirates Stadium permanent for a bargain fee of £30 million, plus £4 million in add-ons.

Initially joining Arsenal to enhance his prospects at Real Madrid, Odegaard’s decision to commit his future to the Gunners reflected his belief in the project and vision set forth by Arteta.

In a stroke of managerial genius, Arteta entrusted Odegaard with the captain’s armband in July 2022, a decision that would prove to be inspirational. With the added responsibility, Odegaard flourished, reaching exceptional heights and leading by example with his performances on the pitch.

His tally of 11 goals and 9 assists across all competitions this season is a testament to his creativity, but Odegaard’s contributions extend beyond mere statistics. As a battler and leader, he has inspired his teammates with his relentless work ethic and determination, driving Arsenal forward with his passion and leadership.


In conclusion, Mikel Arteta’s signings have significantly strengthened Arsenal’s squad, laying the foundation for future success. From attacking flair to defensive solidity, each player has played a vital role in the Gunners’ resurgence under Arteta’s stewardship. As Arsenal continues to evolve, these signings stand as testament to Arteta’s vision and ability to shape a formidable team.

Tags Arteta signings Top 5


    1. No denying that but you could also include Tomi as a success and Raya. Ramsdale will get us our money back and improved us at the time. Zinchenko 50/50 and had Timber been fit I feel he would have been a massive success. The bad signings were risky ones and we didnt spend massively on them so overall its been a success regarding transfers under Arteta.

      1. My brother, your definition of “massively” is massively warped.
        $30 million on an almost 30 year old below average keeper is not massive?
        Vierira also costed 35 million!!! How is that not massive?

        Meanwhile Palace paid just 20m for Adam Wharton…

        Also you should Google what Stuttgart paid for Maximilian Mittelstädt 😂

        1. Haven’t heard of them before but are you suggesting that they are better than raya?

    2. I wouldn’t say “some”, it’s more like “the rest of them”

      With the caveat that like others have said i would also replace Jesus with White

      And the JURY 🙃 is still out on Timber

      1. Golden glove winner Raya? Viera hasnt been great so that’s fair enough. Okay 27 million for Trossard is fantastic business, Partey hasn’t been too shabby and neither has Jorginho. Kiwior has shown glimpses of being a good player and was a big boost at left back for us this season. Sambi, Viera, Trusty, Mari, Runnarson, Turner and Taraverz where bad signings though i will admit that.

        1. However all them signings cost less than an Anthony, Grealish, Nunez or Caiecido so make of that what you want

  1. Yes forgot about Trossard, in terms of value for money he should be number two on the list.
    We need more signings like this to actually compete for multiple trophies

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