Monaco winger and wantaway Southampton star are two players who could see the Gunners romp to a shock league crown
AFTER a strong start to the transfer window, Arsenal’s summer exertions have come to a grinding halt.
Our squad is currently short of what’s needed in order to challenge for the Premier League.
The Gunners have only made two senior signings so far this summer: Sead Kolasinac on a free transfer from Schalke in June, and Alexandre Lacazette for a club record £45million from Lyon.
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And both new boys were impressive on debut, with the Bosnian registering his first goal for the club after coming on as a substitute, and Lacazette giving Gunners fans a glimpse of what he’s about with some neat link up play and a good effort off the post in the first half.
But supporters know full-well that just the two additions won’t be enough in order for us to close the gap on Chelsea, who were crowned champions last season and finished 18 points ahead of Arsene Wenger’s men.
Arsenal remain in the market for Thomas Lemar, but failed to meet Monaco’s fee after agreeing on terms with the player.
Since then, Monaco have sold a number of key men, meaning the likelihood of them letting the French starlet go has reduced, unless Arsenal offer a fee the Ligue 1 champions will find hard to resist.
The Gunners are also interested in Jean Michal-Seri and Virgil Van Dijk as they look to bolster the spine of the side which is clearly in need of strengthening.
However the club remain hamstrung by their inability to remove players from the wage bill, freeing up space for any new additions.
Mathieu Debuchy, Kieran Gibbs, Carl Jenkinson, Calum Chambers and Lucas Perez are all free to leave the club.
Arsenal are also willing to listen to offers for Olivier Giroud, Theo Walcott and Gabriel Paulista – but only if they can bring in the right additions.
As things stand, the Gunners are stuck in a transfer cycle which has come to a halt.
They are struggling to sell the players they are happy to move on, and are unwilling to sell the players who will be easier to move on until they can bring replacements in, which is linked back to being able to sell the players they want to move on to clear the wage bill.
In terms of the season ahead, based on the current window Arsenal have had, a title challenge looks out of reach.
With the Gunners playing Thursday-Sunday due to Europa League commitments, the need for a deep squad is greater than usual.
Wenger will need to strike the right balance between taking the competition seriously, and keeping his big guns fresh for the league campaign.
If the Gunners can find new clubs for the players who are no longer required, and bring in two of Lemar, Seri and Van Dijk, I’d back the club to challenge for their 14th league title.
However based on the current state of the squad, regaining a spot in the top four and challenging in the cups is the best the Gunners can hope for.
Current Season Prediction: Third and Europa League Winners.
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