So the transfer window is closed. We finally spent some money. A truly world class talent in Mesut Ozil (I am not going to put the silly little dots about his name) has joined The Arsenal for a club record £42.4million, but I sit here this morning with a bitter sweet taste in my mouth – although that might be the rubbish ocffee I have just made myself.
Whilst the signing of Ozil is a brilliant one. A world class player, just entering his peak, there is a feeling that we could have, no we should have, done more. The beginning of the Scouts Motto is a vow that ‘I will always do my best.’ It is clear that no one at Arsenal was ever a scout, because we have not done our best.
With a reported £80million to spend in this transfer window, we have spent just £42.4million of that. Add in the sales of Gervinho and more, we have raised circa £10million and free’d up hundreds of thousands in wages. A net spend of a little over £30million means there is plenty left in the pot. After last summers transfer window, Ivan Gazidas came out and said:
‘We also kept some powder dry so we’ve got the ability to invest if our manager finds the right opportunities in January.’
We bought a left back.
Now before I spiral too far into the pit of negativity, I am pleased with the players we got in. Emiliano Viviano, whilst I have never seen him play, reads like a player who could challenge Sczcesny. The press reported it as Arsenal signing a Seria B goal keeper. But the truth is he is Italian number 2, and last year was Fiorentina’s number 1 goalkeeper when they just narrowely missed out on Champions League football. The only slight worry is he looks a little like Manuel Almunia! However, why have we loaned him? We are Arsenal Football Club. We should not be relying on loan deals. With the money we have, if Arsene Wenger thinks Viviano is good enough, let’s go buy him and then make a song and dance about buying one of the best Italian goalkeepers.
We then have our 2 free transfer. Flamini and Sanogo. We know what we are getting in Flamini. And he showed what he can give to the team in the second half against Spurs. Going against the grain, I am happy with our midfield starters. Wither Arteta/Ramsey/Wilshere as the 2 central midfielder, and Rosicky/Cazorla/Chamberlain and now Ozil for the attacking midfielder, I struggled to see why we would need to go out and spend a £25million on Fellaini. Or big on a Bender or Gundogan. So the signing of Flamini is smart. It has improved the squad, and you know what you are getting. You know he will settle and he is good enough for the Premier League. And, in theory anyway, coming in on a free should have left money to spend on other area’s of the side.
As for Sanogo. He is a giant of a man and will come good. In his early games, I have been impressed by his movement and work rate. The guy has talent, but it might take him a year or so to get fully up to speed with the Premier League.
And that is the frustration. We essentially sit here with 1 senior striker. Yes, Theo Walcott and Lukas Podolski can cover up there, but neither have been impressive when doing so. A bid for Demba Ba on the final day is not good enough. Especially when on loan. We still had another £40million to spend. Did we do our best to spend it? I think not. And in defence. Liverpool spent £25million early in the day on 2 talented young centrebacks. One of them the highly rates Sakho from PSG. Why were we not in for him? We had the money.
Yes, Mesut Ozil is a brilliant deal. One of the top 10 players in the world. And hopefully the signing of him will attract further players. But at the moment, it feels like I have been given a toy for Christmas with no batteries. And the shop’s do not open untill tomorrow. Except in this case the shop does not reopen until January. We failed to do our best. We are bad scouts.
Finally, how must Robin Van Persie be thinking this morning. Yes, he won the league title last year, but he left Arsenal to play with better players and win more. I said last year, Arsenal will win more trophies during Van Persie’s time at Old Trafford then Manchester United will. And now Van Persie looks around him and see’s Ashley Young, Michael Carrick, Tom Cleverely and Nani supplying him. Whilst at Arsenal there Cazorla and Ozil. The two most creative players in Europe. I wonder if he is starting to regret the move