With the summer transfer window now closed, it seems an apt time to look at Arsenal’s summer business. The Gunners left it late to bring in striker Lucas Perez from Deportivo and Shkodran Mustafi from Valencia, but they got the deals over the line in the end.
Most Arsenal fans would say it’s about time the Gunners made some fresh additions to their squad, but do the new signings make Arsenal more likely Premier League title contenders.
Why the delay in strengthening?
My big question is why did Arsene Wenger not bring these players in earlier in the summer and the Gunners may not have had such a mixed start to the season.
Mustafi has been reported as an Arsenal target for a long time, so why wait until deadline day to do the deal, especially for a fee that could rise to up to £35million. Surely Valencia would have accepted that sort of offer earlier in the summer.
Wenger could have avoided all the bad atmosphere and frustration of the Gunners fans by doing these deals early, just like he did by bringing in Granit Xhaka.
Arsenal squad is far stronger now
Arsenal’s squad is no doubt stronger for the presence of Xhaka, Perez and Mustafi. Xhaka and Mustafi have proven themselves in top leagues, while Perez seems to be something of a late bloomer.
His record of 17 goals in La Liga was pretty impressive and he does seem like a versatile player. Let’s hope he is not a one-season wonder. He looks to be a decent alternative to Jamie Vardy, who the turned down a move to the Gunners earlier in the campaign.
The likes of Calum Chambers and Jack Wilshere will not be missed for a season. Chambers has been replaced by another youngster Rob Holding, while Wilshere made just three appearances for the Gunners in the whole of last season.
Arsenal outsiders for the title
Arsenal are still outsiders for the Premier League title this season at odds of 10/1, mainly because of a mixed start to their top-flight campaign. The trouble for Arsenal is that most of their rivals now have a stronger squad than last season.
The Gunners do have quality in their squad, but the likes of Chelsea, Manchester City and Manchester United have spent big to improve their squads and all currently look like better bets than Wenger’s side to win the title in May.
Can Arsenal now challenge for the Premier League title?