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What Arsenal Undervalue
After watching Arsenal suffer a miserable defeat against Aston Villa this past weekend, Arsenal fans have voiced themselves louder than ever.
The calls for signings have grown louder before with some even calling for the board or Arsene Wenger to resign. While many have observed Arsenal’s failure this summer to sign top players, a smaller point has been overlooked. Numerous times Arsene Wenger has stated that Arsenal will not needlessly spend money, and will only spend on players that they consider “Top, Top, Top players”. This is an enormous fault in their mentality. With the way Arsene Wenger and the board value their own players, it seems near impossible to find players of better quality without paying a price that is exorbitant to say the least.
While these signings may not be feasible for Arsenal due to a high reluctance to spend more than a player’s value, the signing of squad players is more than possible. Take Tottenham for example, this summer they have brought in Nacer Chadli, Etienne Capoue, Paulinho, and Roberto Soldado. While Soldado is significantly better than any other option they could field at striker, the other three players are marginally better if better at all than the options Spurs had available to them. In no way is Nacer Chadli better than Gareth Bale. In no way is Etienne Capoue better than Sandro. As for Paulinho, he, Dembele, and Sigurdsson are nearly of equal quality. Yet all of these signings strengthen the squad and add depth.
Manchester City provides and has provided an example for the past few years of how to sign squad players that build depth and add competition. Fernandinho, Jesus Navas, Alvaro Negreo, and Stevan Jovetic all are good players that are not necessarily better than Man City’s best options at each position. Yet each adds depth. So when Yaya Toure takes a knock, in steps Paulinho. And so goes for Sergio Aguero, Edin Dzeko, Samir Nasri or David Silva. These are the kind of players that are significantly lacking at Arsenal. If Olivier Giroud or Theo Walcott were to get hurt at the moment, Arsenal would have no viable option to replace them. That is absolutely unacceptable at any club that aspires to win the title much less finish top four. It’s time for Wenger and the board to open their eyes and see this as well.
Players such as Mamadou Sakho, Blaise Matuidi, Ibrahim Afellay, Erik Lamela, Christian Eriksen, Kyriakos Papadopoulos, Nani, Julio Cesar, Fred, Jackson Martinez, Leandro Damiao, even Alexis Sanchez are all available and would improve the squad if not add depth. The excuse there are no top players available should never have even been applicable and as such, it is time for Wenger to splash the cash and at the very least add squad depth.
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