So here we are. Freedom. The night after the madness stopped and the quiet will soon envelope us. For now there is still the echoes of yesterday’s Deadline Day still ringing in our ears and online, with many people taking to Twitter and other social media platforms, as well as texting fellow gooners, outraged at the negligence of the manager for not signing another player.
But is Arsene Wenger negligent? Has he left us woefully short? I think not. There are areas of the park that we could have done with fine-tuning, but the need was not essential, we were not a patient bleeding out. By not signing a defensive midfielder or a world-class attacker, we’re not going to slowly die a thousand deaths in the Premier League, slowly disappearing down the league until we’re fighting off relegation, are we?
We’ve got a slight worry if Le Coq breaks down for a prolonged period of time as that will leave us with just Arteta, but providing he can stay fit, then we can still compete. As for the attacking options, we have different players, with different styles, each of whom can bring something different. Theo not working up top against a team? Giroud can be a target man up top with the players feeding from his flicks and knocks on, or Welbeck can be a hybrid of both if we need it. Or if we want to try Alexis in that position, we can do that two. For the wide roles we can feature Alexis, Welbeck, Theo, the Ox, or even at a push Ramsey, Wilshere or Ozil if we really need to. So we have players of the requisite quality, we just need to find our rhythm and get on with this season.
Sure, with the money we all spend, with the wages the club have and with the players we have, many will tell you that we would never be in the position whereby we’ll be a mid-table team and we are just standing still, but I say that sort of phrase is exactly the point. ‘With the players we have’ – exactly! We have good players already! We have options up front. Welbeck has admitted that he’s taken a while to adjust and after the international break he will be back. Giroud has been a bit hit and miss, but only for two games out of four. At Crystal Palace he looked good and when he came on against Newcastle he made an impact. I know they are not ‘big clubs’ and those two games can’t be classed as ‘big games’, but to be honest I don’t care. I don’t care because we’ve already seen every team bar one drop points and I think that will continue to happen given the nature and the competition in this league. So if Giroud gets another 15 – 20 goals, that’s exactly what we need. If Welbeck gets 10, if Theo bags 10, if Alexis gets 25, that gives us 65 goals in our attack. If we have more goals from midfield – which is what Arsene has said he wants to see more of – then we’re laughing.
Don’t get me wrong: I’m not 100% happy. I’m not 100% convinced that not signing an outfield player this summer was the best move for a team looking at succeeding in the league. But I’m also not contemplating some sort of suicide bid this morning. Life’s too short and I’m getting too old for that stress. Plus, I prefer to save the stress for when we play Stoke in two weeks time. Heaven forbid what will happen if we beat Stoke and Chelski the week after. People will probably admit themselves in to rehab because they can’t take the ‘up and down’ nature of being a football fan. I won’t. I’ll just be happy that we’re winning football games.
The time for analysing the ‘why’s and ‘wherefore’s will not be now. It will be after we’ve had a proper chance to evaluate the season. Not signing anybody was not ideal, but what if signing somebody yesterday would prohibit another stab at Benzema or another player in January or next summer? Would you rather we signed Charlie Austin now and nobody better ion January or the summer? I know what i’d prefer. Last season we snapped up Welbeck on deadline day and everybody seemed quite happy with that signing. Yet now we have people forgetting that he even exists. What’s the point in signing players if we discard them a year later? What are we, Totteringham or Liverpool? Because that’s what would have happened. We’d have signed Austin, been happy for a week, then when he didn’t quite turn out to be the player we are hoping for, we’d have been salivating for another centre forward in January or June.
Let’s all remember that the season we went unbeaten we signed just a ‘keeper and an unknown left back. You never know what is going to transpire over the next few months, so chill, if you’re not already chilled.
We have the bodies. We just need to get the momentum of winning games. And we will win games. We’ve done it before and we’ll do it again. And we’ll all be focused on the patient once more because it turns out he wasn’t bleeding at all. He just needs a bit of love and attention. We can help with that as fans. By getting behind the guys we have and hoping that we can have a proper go at the league.
If you’re down today, get your chin up, and remember who you are, what you are and who you represent. The Arsenal