Arsene Wenger’s pursuit of a world class forward was one of the main talking points of last summer’s transfer window. Clearly, one striker in the form of Olivier Giroud would not suffice for a whole season. Miraculously, an appropriate description such is Arsenal’s luck with injuries, the Frenchman has managed to stay fit, barring a minor knee problem. However, it is only a matter of time until this lack of depth is exposed; Nicklas Bendtner has failed to impress since, it seems, returning from his gap year, while Yaya Sanogo is injured and inexperienced. Thus, it is paramount to Arsenal’s title ambitions to sign a striker who, in Giroud’s absence, will improve the side rather than weaken it.
Sitting five points clear and playing mesmerising football, Arsenal fans have reason to be excited. Excluding the home defeat to Borussia Dortmund, a game which Arsenal deserved a point, Wenger’s men have risen to the task in every so called ‘big game’ this season: Tottenham, Napoli and Liverpool have all been left in their wake – without a goal to their name. The Gunners are the most consistent side in the league, with defensive solidity, attacking cohesion and moments of genius the hallmarks of their season to date. Not only that, but they have also been pragmatic and shown that crucial ability to grind out results, such as the 2-0 victory over Palace with ten men. With the January transfer window approaching, Wenger has a great opportunity to add momentum to their progress and bolster the squad, most importantly with a striker. Doing so would establish the Gunners as not just title contenders, but favourites.
Playing in a system with one centre forward who is required to hold the ball, provide a focal point and bring others into the game, which, it must be said, Giroud has done superbly, Robert Lewandowski would be perfect for Arsenal. The Pole has these traits in abundance and, like Giroud, he is technically gifted with good awareness and vision, which would allow him to slot into the Arsenal system seamlessly. If his ability wasn’t enough to persuade you, then wait till the money talk: the 25-year old is out of contract at the end of the season, meaning Jurgen Klopp is in a position Wenger will be painfully aware of: he can either sell the striker for a reduced price in January, or risk losing him for free come the summer. Not only that, but Klopp may have added incentive to sell him to Arsenal in order to prevent domestic rivals Bayern Munich snapping him up. Evidently, this transfer is feasible and should, in my eyes, be deemed a priority.
With it, Arsenal would have two very, very good centre forwards at their disposal, and as any manager will tell you, competition brings the best out in people. If they don’t already, Lewandowski’s acquisition would provide Wenger with all the ingredients of a title winning side.
See more from Reuben Lewis @rlewisafc