Last week I dwelled on players who Arsenal football club needed to sign during this January transfer window and who manager Arsene Wenger had his “eye” on.
Since then, nothing of what I suggested has happened and none of the players who were being “eyed” have been bought by Wenger. No, I’m not surprised. What surprises, or should I say impresses me, is how teams that are already strong are further strengthening their teams. Manchester United may be stumbling what with the loss to Southampton last weekend, but they are still stronger than Arsenal this season. In fact, they have the strongest goal keeper in the league right now in David de Gea but they have still gone further to sign one of the greatest shot stoppers of our time; Victor Valdes, for free.
Yes the former Barcelona keeper moved on a free transfer to United last week and Louis Van Gaal deserves a lot of praise for that. Arsenal fans like talking about how the board denies Wenger funds for signings, but he doesn’t even take advantage of the free transfers. Manchester City do not need a forward.
They are just two points behind league leaders Chelsea in the standings thanks to a draw with Everton last weekend, but their attacking force looks like this: Edin Dzeko, David Silva, Stevan Jovetic, Sergio Aguero and now Wilfried Bony. The list goes on. Infact Yaya Toure is also part of their attacking force. But by virtue of Aguero being injured and Toure off to Afcon, Manuel Pellegrini did the intelligent thing and signed Bony from Swansea.
That’s what the January transfer market is; a time to assess how your season is going and tweak your squad based on where you want to be. Arsenal’s business this month is basically let a forward in Lukas Podolski leave for Inter Milan and sending Yaya Sanogo to Crystal Palace on loan. Surely it’s time for Wenger to add to the squad to achieve his lifelong- target of finishing fourth. Right now it doesn’t look like the Gunners will qualify for the Champions League given that Southampton aren’t slowing down; and yet we are still in three competitions with a depleted squad.
Fans make excuses sometimes about injuries spoiling our season, but that is normal and every team goes through a period where key players are injured. That is why the January market should be used wisely. At this point we should sign players even on short term loan spells. Today we are past the half way mark of this transfer window and I am still holding my breath hoping that Wenger will do something smart. The key word here being “smart.” Talk to me on @CarolRadull on twitter and www.facebook.com/CarolRadull