Avatar photo Date:8th September 2023 at 8:21am
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After the disappointment of our ever so nearly challenge for the Premier League title for the first time in years during the 2022/23 campaign, when most fans put their anger and frustration aside at seeing our lead get chipped away by Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City side in the later reaches of the season, it was obvious to everyone that we needed to strengthen further.

A lack of depth ultimately cost us, key injuries hit and form turned – whatever may have happened without those injuries remains well open for debate to this day, but from a Gooners perspective, we know what we think and there are also quite a few City fans who think it would not have taken much for them not to have caught us up given the lead we established before the fates turned against us.

For many fans it probably felt like a Seagull had nicked our chips, but for those who like a flutter they can get their own back and see what they can nick as they get free chips bonuses in the months ahead.

This summer, the Arsenal board have certainly done just that for manager Mikel Arteta and he more than received a war chest to continue rebuilding the squad in his own image. Following on from the improvements made in the last two transfer windows, this summer we have seen the arrival of Kai Havertz from Chelsea, Jurrien Timber from Ajax and Declan Rice from West Ham United. Whilst Timber’s time has not gone well with injury, it is still a circa £200 million investment in the squad (although obviously somewhat off set by sales), and our start to the season has been good.

Four games in, fifth place does not sound great, but we have three wins and a draw and we are tied on points to second place. It is as close to perfect as you can get without being perfect, but it is only goal advantage letting us down right now. Four games in, that really does not matter though.

Our first signing of the summer, Havertz, is keenly aware of his role in that as so far he is yet to score or assist, but the 24 year old has admitted that he needs to ‘take longer’ to adjust to what our gaffer wants from him before he ultimately shows his best again.

Speaking to the media ahead of Germany’s friendly with Japan this week, he was adamant his form was fine and that the media just ‘point out the negatives’ but accepted his production needed to step up.

“It’s only my second month there, so that’s why I’m relatively relaxed. So far in my career I have had phases here and there where things have been a little bumpy…and I know a lot of bad stuff will be written. It’s not the first time I’ve come to a new club and so I know that it can take a bit longer.”

Our gaffer is not against taking him off when it is not working, but he continues to fully back him, previously saying he has produced ‘really good things’ in his minutes so far, but obviously his contribution needs to improve.

“In a lot of situations he should have scored a lot of goals already this season. That’s the thing that is missing there.”

Let us hope that improves sooner rather than later.

Image from: unsplash.com


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