When I woke up this morning, it was suppose to be a good day – then I saw that Manchester United have replaced Robin van Persie before we truly have. The news that United brought in Radamel Falcao, easily one of the worlds top center forwards (if not at the head of the queue), despite having Wayne Rooney on their books already, simply put me over the edge with the state of affairs at Arsenal when it comes to transfers.
Coming into the season, it was already a risk having Yaya Sanogo as our only other true striker at the club behind Olivier Giroud. Despite so many feeling that we needed another to come in, Wenger insisted on bringing in Alexis Sanchez. While the Chilean wide man is a very good signing, he was not a necessary one – we currently have plenty of wide players available, many who deserve more minutes but will not get it at his expense (see Alex Oxlade Chamberlain).
The unfortunate realities that face the Gunners at current, is that there is a real risk they have to either go with a completely unready Yaya Sanogo to lead the line, or rely on Alexis Sanchez to play out of position till January and risk being burnt out by then. Yes Sanchez is top quality, but that does not mean he can do a job day in-day out at a position where he has VERY little experience at; but it did not have to be this way.
Strikers that Arsenal have willingly missed out on this transfer window
Radamel Falcao, Mario Balotelli, Loic Remy, Alvaro Morata, Mario Mandzukic, Diego Costa, Adrian Ramos, Ciro Immobile, Alessio Cerci, Abel Hernandez, Robert Lewandowski, Javier Hernandez
There is a legitimate chance that I am missing a few names on that list, but the simple fact is, ANY of those players in at the club see us in a FAR better position than we are currently in. Now, not all of these players are targets we could have acquired, but what it does initially do is put to rest the ridiculous notion when Arsene Wenger claims that quality players were not available, and more to the point, that the right players were not around.
If anyone can it there and tell me that these players are good enough for Manchester United, Liverpool, Chelsea, Napoli, Atletico Madrid, Borussia Dortmund, Bayern Munich and Real Madrid, but not Arsenal, you’re having an absolute laugh. Granted, Chicharito’s move to Real is nothing but to milk a particular market for shirt sales, but is he still not better than Yaya Sanogo? A shot at Lewandowski was never plausible, but after that, every single player on the above list is someone we had every right to make a play for…and none was made…not one.
The sad truth of it all, is that this goes deeper than just the striker issue, that was glossed over with the Sanchez signing and the notion that he can play striker. For a player who, apart from four matches this summer in Brazil where he featured at “striker”, the man has barely played there during his entire European career – not at Barcelona and not at Udinese.
Wenger’s ineptitude in the market has been going on for years, and all you have to do is look at the following; the fact that we have YET to properly replace Robin van Persie, properly bring in a top class holding midfielder befitting the legacies of Patrick Vieira, Emmanuel Petit or Gilberto Silva and we at current only have six defenders total in the first team in a season where we are likely to feature in some 50-odd matches. All of that smacks of complete and utter mismanagement to extraordinary and unacceptable levels – none of this can be deemed suitable what so ever.
Now, I understand that the window has *looks at the clock* just about seven hours left and much can still be done, but the fact that Wenger is busy officiating a charity match in the city of seven-hills rather than concentrating on business is a massive slap in the face to the entire Arsenal fan base. If any one expects us to make three very good signings (or better) to truly solve our issues and put us in a place of true contention, then you at least have more faith than I do.
After yesterday’s performance at Leicester, the fifth of five uninspired performances by the club in all five matches this season, why Wenger did not wake up and immediately get on the phone before he settled down to a breakfast which no doubt consisted of croissants and brie is beyond reckoning. I for one hope he proves us all wrong, because if he doesn’t, he finally has plenty to answer for.
Wenger is a man without a plan, and for someone who loves to tout his educational success, knowledge of finance and who prides himself on being a thinker and a visionary, he has failed to adapt to the growing nature of football in England, and he runs the risk of helping cause the collapse of all he has achieved.
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Drew Thompson is a contributing writer for We Are Hooligans as well as Outside Of The Boot – Follow him on Twitter, which is listed just above