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Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Arsenal continue to flounder

Arsenal fans expect their team to be challenging for Premier League titles every season but unfortunately for them challenging for the title is all Arsene Wenger’s side have been able to achieve since their last Premier League win in 03/04.

As with last season, a big signing at the start of the season sparked hope that this could be the year for the Gunners, even more belief was gained following last seasons FA cup win with expectations it would instil a winning mentality in the young Arsenal side.

Last year major hope was gained from the signing of Mesut Ozil, who despite starting his Arsenal career well, has turned into one of Arsenal’s biggest ever flops. This season however, Alexis Sanchez has proven a very shrewd signing for only £30 million.

Despite Sanchez’s terrific form, Arsenal find themselves with 17 points in eleven games, 12 points off the leaders Chelsea and in 6th place, a very disappointing start for a team with aspirations of winning the title.

They are fast becoming a one-man team, with eight goals and two assists in the league Sanchez has been electric, was it not for his goals Arsenal would find themselves in nineteenth place. The task is to get more players on his wavelength.

The fallings in this team are no mystery and Arsene Wenger’s lack of ability to bring in the right players to turn his Arsenal side from title challengers to title winners is worrying, the signing of Danny Welbeck looks good but Arsenal still need another top class striker that can be the difference in tight games, a Diego Costa type player for example.

The situation at the back is also in need of addressing, with Thomas Vermaelen leaving in the summer you felt a top replacement was needed, instead Wenger went and spent big on young England man Callum Chambers who is a talent but maybe not the finished article just yet.

Laurent Koscienly has been arguably one of the best centre-half’s in the Premier League in the past few seasons but without a quality partner he can only do so much, the second-half collapse at home to Anderlecht was a perfect example of the defensive side of the team letting them down.

As has been the case for far too long now, Arsenal need a dominant midfield player, Jack Wilshere and Aaron Ramsey do not have the physical presence required to be a Vieira type player that Arsenal need while Arteta and Flamini are not up to the standard. If Sami Khedira was to arrive at the Emirates it could have a majorly beneficial impact on the side’s title credentials.

Arsenal’s players have often been accused, and maybe rightly so, of not having the winning mentality required to be champions, but after so long without a Premier League title it begs the question has Arsene Wenger lost this mentality. In Arsenal’s glory days Wenger went toe to toe with Alex Ferguson and often won but these days when faced with the prospect of facing Mourinho he can never seem to get a result.


Arsenal’s season is by no means over, one would still expect them to gain a top-4 place but they are miles off the quality of league leaders and probable champions Chelsea. Unless Wenger can address the weaknesses in the team they could be looking at year upon year of just getting a top-4 spot with no potential for major honours.

photo credit: Ronnie Macdonald via photopin cc