Arsenals board bragged earlier in the summer about how much money they can invest in players and promised to pull off signings that would get them competing for the title again. That has failed to materialise with targets such as Higuain and Luis Gastavo choosing to go elsewhere. This failure to attract big name players even with the money and the pull of Champions League football came to a head against Villa on the weekend.
It started with great optimism. Giroud opened the scoring inside 6 minutes and Arsenal were dominating after Villa were too easy to open up. However Villa tightened up after that and became dangerous on the counter attack. The referee didn’t have the best performance to say the least as he often contradicted his own decision and created a hostile atmosphere with his dishing out of yellow cards. Arsenal didn’t create enough going forward and gave the ball away sloppily at times with even the usually reliable Wilshere making mistakes. Villa went on to win 3-1 with the help of two questionable penalty decisions and a third goal that was a diabolical piece of defending to watch.
What this game highlighted the most was the Gunners lack of a leader within the team. It wasn’t until after half-time when I realised who the captain was! To my surprise it was Mertesacker but I wouldn’t have known that unless I looked it up. Not only that but during the game Arsenal lost Koscielny as he was sent off as well as Gibbs, Sagna, and Chamberlain to injury. So their already thin squad gets even thinner – wouldn’t be so thin with new signings would it Arsene? If I was an Arsenal fan I would be furious with Spurs spending money galore on quality players, 8 years without a trophy, and lack of desire to push forward. On top of that how about this for a possibility – Arsenal play Fernebache in mid-week to qualify for the Champions League and have a number of fitness issues leaving the possibility a fielding a strong team a doubt. After that fantastic run of 10 wins in 12 games last season to get 4th, imagine if Arsenal failed to qualify for the Champions League – something that will be their major selling point in attracting players. They aren’t loo lucky getting players as it is let alone without Champions League football. This all could have been avoided if they got their ass in gear and bought some players. They’re now making panic bids for the likes of Cabaye and Casillas and I’m getting déjà vu. If they don’t turn this around with some serious big player signings then this could well lead to the end of Wenger’s reign.