Are Arsenal ready for a title challenge?

Are Arsenal ready for a title challenge?

Arsenal have been potential challengers for the Premier League for over a decade, but they haven’t managed to lead a serious title challenge for a number of years. The debt incurred from moving stadiums in 2006 has prevented them from spending the amount that their challengers have in the transfer window, but their ability to remain a Champions League club has allowed them to recover quickly and they are now able to afford and attract some of the best players in world football. That has been shown over the last couple of summers and they now have a squad that is up there with the very best of the league.

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The signing of Petr Cech is a masterstroke given that it has been a weak area for the Gunners since the departure of Jens Lehmann. Furthermore the former Chelsea goalkeeper has been one of the best performers in his position over the past decade and will bring a championship winning mentality to the squad. He is also a leader, and that is certainly a huge benefit to a squad which has looked unable to perform in a biggest matches. The goalkeeper will add organisation to the back four and this signing should go a long way to making Arsenal’s defence stronger and more able to keep clean sheets when it matters.

Arsenal have a quality attacking line up which is arguably the best in the division, especially when it comes to attacking midfielders, they have a set of players who can rival Chelsea in the final third. Alexis Sanchez, Mesut Ozil, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Olivier Giroud make up an exciting quadruplet with skill, creativity, pace and finishing to call upon. Although the attacking line up does give Arsenal a great chance of challenging for the title, their defence and lack of quality in the defensive midfield position is a concern, especially when it comes to the big matches.

Last season, Arsenal’s season underwent a resurgence since Francis Coquelin returned from loan which highlighted the importance of the defensive midfield role, especially for teams chasing championships. The side went on an extraordinary run and Coquelin was seen as surplus to requirements before last season. It’s unknown whether he has a long term future in the first team given his limitations on the ball, he isn’t the most suited to Arsenal, but he certainly has a place in the squad. Despite his good form, Coquelin isn’t the long term option for Arsenal in this role and rumours linking them to Arturo Vidal are promising as he would provide a more complete player in central midfield. They definitely need to strengthen in midfield in the next couple of months as they need more bite to supplement their technical players.

Although Petr Cech is the only completed transfer to date, more are expected before the season starts and Arsenal are continuing to target some really exciting players. Arturo Vidal who I mentioned above, is one of the most complete midfielders in world football and he is coming off the back of an impressive Copa America where he helped Chile win the competition for the first time alongside Arsenal forward Alexis Sanchez. He will add real quality to the Arsenal midfield and provide some much needed bite.

The next month is integral to the club as they prepare for the new season with a trip to Asia on the horizon. The club have a nice start to the season with only Liverpool offering a real text in the opening month and a quick start is crucial for a title challenge. The squad is there to challenge seriously for the title, doubts remain around the coaching staff and methods, but Arsene Wenger has the experience and a Premier League win could be the perfect way to end a wonderful career.

Comments

5 responses to “Are Arsenal ready for a title challenge?”

  1. Josh says:

    So wrong in so many ways… vidal isn’t a dm he is a box to box, so if we signed him it would be more competition for ramsey wilshere and cazorla rather than coquelin . Our defence isn’t weak anymore we have 4 CB’s of a good level (compared to the rest of the league) 2 lbs and 2 rbs with lots of players able to play multiple positions. & I believe coquelin will be a key part of our squad for years to come.

  2. JayT says:

    Jake, thanks for showing that you know nothing about football. I especially like your turn of phrase about Coquelin’s supposed , “lack of skills on the ball ” which if you actually COULD read you would know that not only is Coquelin skilled on the ball but had better defensive statistics than every DM except Matic maybe. Your article is all cliché and rumour with no fact to support it. I guess you were unable to understand it when Vidal stated there was no contact with Arsenal. Even the rumour is nonsense since why pay top dollar for a box to box midfielder with no resale value when what is needed is to add depth in the form of a young defensive midfielder who can challenge and /or backup Coquelin.

    And on what basis is Arsenal’s defence weak or suspect? They were third in terms of goals allowed but they are weak!?! I see a back line that has strength in depth and no need of changes. Mertesacker and Koscielny for a top partnership with the excellent Gabriel behind them and Callum Chambers in the wings. It would be stupid to spend money on another centre back. One would be hard pressed to improve on the incumbent CBs. You need to stop with following the crowd (who are equally clueless) and start using your brain. This article was a waste of space.

    • Joshua Bamigboye says:

      On point and cannot be farther from the truth. At times, when I read some articles, my tummy turns at the rubbish being churned out, taking priceless time and space on what is read. BR needs to edit the articles published more seriously…..

  3. JakeJackman says:

    Appreciate the feedback, main point of the article was to suggest the added leadership of Cech will help the team in big matches. Last season, Arsenal managed to take only 11 points from the ten matches against the other five sides that finished in the top six. This was better than years gone by, and the victory over Manchester City was a huge step in the right direction, but if they want to be title contenders, they need to pick up more points from these matches. My point about the defence wasn’t about a lack of quality, but a lack of organisation and leadership, Cech will add that.

    On Vidal, I don’t say he is a defensive midfielder, but a more complete player in the middle of the park, who will be better suited to the system, especially if Arsenal play with three attacking midfielders. He can contribute in both halves, but he still possesses the required defensive qualities to ensure Arsenal aren’t easily broken down.

    This piece is only my opinion and others will differ, but Arsenal as title contenders will be a topic which is talked about a lot over the coming weeks, this is just my view on it. I think they have a great chance after signing Cech, but there are still areas to strengthen. Coquelin did well last season, but I don’t think he is good enough to be a starter for a title winning side. Vidal wouldn’t be a like for like replacement, he would be a box to box midfielder, but one who is very good defensively, which is why he would be a great signing.

  4. fayokun muyiwa says:

    jake, i nw undastand… carzola to me is arsenal’s vidal already – complete,exceled defensively last season and gave room for people like ramsey,ozil and sanchez to flourish (causin him to score just 2 league goalz frm open play last season)…
    my conclusion is dat, arsenal shud get a more experienced DM or CF(maybe, none or both)…
    arsenal is to me, ready for the title…

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Published by EPL Index
Updated: 2015-07-07 08:01:58
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