Arsenal tried to sign a striker in January, that much is clear having been reported far and wide by every journalist in the game. It’s also clear that they failed in that plan, and Fabrizio Romano has explained that the most important aspect of their intention was for the potential target to be considered a top player. The club were simply not going to spend money on a player about which they weren’t absolutely convinced.
Arsenal tried hard to sign Dusan Vlahovic from Fiorentina, but the Serbia international obviously chose Juventus as his destination and he’s already scored twice in two games for the Old Lady. There were other intended targets as well, but none of them were available for transfers in the middle of the season. One of these was Alexander Isak of Real Sociedad. LOSC Lille’s Jonathan David was another. The Gunners tried and tried again to open negotiations with both clubs, but neither were interested in any offers at all at that point.
As we all obviously realize, the situation is about to become desperate. For good or bad, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is gone. Alexandre Lacazette and Eddie Nketiah are set to follow him through the exit door at the end of the season, which means 20-year-old Folarin Balogun will be the only striker left at the club unless signings are made.
“Don’t worry, Arsenal fans,” Romano says. “It was a disappointing window, but the strategy is clear.”
Rather than settling for a lower-level target in January, the club have obviously decided to wait for the summer to make their move. In the meantime, they’ve saved money on wages of the likes of Aubameyang, Sead Kolasinac, Pablo Mari, Calum Chambers and Ainsley Maitland Niles, all with the intention of directing the funds towards a new top-quality striker at the end of the season.
Romano also says that Arsenal had tried for Lautaro Martinez and Tammy Abraham last summer, but the former wasn’t interested in leaving Inter Milan, while the latter already had an agreement to join AS Roma in place.