Arsenal Fan: Ozil Is Great, But The Board Have Failed Us Again

We got very lucky in signing Özil but now everyone is ignoring the fact that, despite that, we've not improved enough in the areas we needed to...
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We got very lucky in signing Özil but now everyone is ignoring the fact that, despite that, we've not improved enough in the areas we needed to...

Despite Ozil Signing, This Summer Wasn't A Success For Arsenal

116 days…

It’s 116 days till the transfer window opens again. Given the ridiculous circus act that accompanies it and the sheer excitement of it all, I think I need longer than that. First, let’s look at what happened this summer. I’ll grant you this may seem like I’m a bit late to the party - like the bloke who’s just realised beards are cool - but I assure you I’m not (I’ve had a beard for ages). Had I written about Arsenal’s transfer window on Tuesday this would be a ridiculously upbeat, positive (and possibly delusional) piece. If you’ve read anything else I’ve written, you’ll know that’s just not my way.

So we’ve signed Özil. Straight after it was announced I was on the phone talking to a friend about how excited I was about seeing Özil play for Arsenal. An excitement which could only truly be expressed on a sexual level. This isn’t going to be a piece putting a downer on proceedings, I’m still ecstatic- Arsenal Football Club have just signed the best number 10 in the world. Before I get a load of people shouting at me, telling me that Mata or Silva is better, I’ll just pretend that I’m blindly following Jose Mourinho who said “He is the best No.10 in the world.” That’s pretty cut and dry from Jose and more to the point, this article isn’t here to argue about who the best playmaker in the world is. From the Arsenal point of view, this acquisition is the reason Jose blocked the loan of Demba Ba. A quality addition up front would in my view, make us title contenders, but again this isn’t the place for me to have to explain why don’t need a massive, physical anchor-man to challenge.

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According to the best reports, Arsenal finalised the deal with Özil on Sunday, with the player having visited London Colney to complete the first part of the medical on Friday. The summer began with the high profile pursuit of a top class striker. Firstly, Higuain and then, Suarez. The details of this have been rehashed time and again this summer so I shall abstain from doing so. As the summer dragged on, panic rose exponentially until Özil was officially announced. By all accounts, Wenger played an instrumental part in the acquisition with a call to Mesut closing the deal. The real issue here is that everything occurred from Friday onwards. What would have been the plan if Real Madrid weren’t selling any of their players? Well, we probably would have got Demba Ba. Apart from that, what other targets were out there? Who were we targeting?

I think that this summer wasn’t a success. Arsenal Football Club got lucky. We got lucky that a truly world class player was sold at what was (given the current inflated market) a very fair price. It was an opportunistic signing by Wenger- the type he excels at. Look at Flamini. Look at Monreal, Cazorla to name a few. The plan this summer was to go and add a world class striker. We failed. For all the optimism in the Arsenal fanbase about how we are now established and will look to build upon this with further world class talent, is there any evidence from this summer that we would go and add a world class player to our squad if the selling club didn’t want to get rid and played tough? The answer is no.

I hope (and feel) that this squad will be there or thereabouts in the title race come January. If that was the case, and Giroud was injured, would we go all out to sign a world class striker to push us over the edge? Moving forward, will we add world class talent on a consistent basis? As I said, on the evidence of this summer- no. The plan wasn’t followed through, we took advantage of a fantastic opportunity, the like of which occur only very rarely. Lessons must be learnt from this summer, Wenger said after the NLD on Sunday that he was willing to overpay in the market. I just hope that he is willing to do so and give this team the push it requires to make it a trophy-winning one. Perhaps signing Özil will remind everyone at the club what is possible if we are truly ambitious.

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