Arsenal manager Arsène Wenger has insisted that the club can strengthen further without signing new players.
So far this summer Arsenal have signed goalkeeper Petr Čech from Chelsea but are yet to add the midfielder or striker that many believe would add huge improvement to the squad.
Wenger has talked about how difficult it is to find a player of the requisite ability to improve Arsenal’s current options, and has looked back to the summer of 2013 to explain why new signings won’t automatically lead to success.
“I was asked this question two years ago when some clubs bought 10 players,” said the Arsenal manager. “People said: ‘How do you feel? You have no chance now.'”
Arsenal only signed Mathieu Flamini (free transfer) and Mesut Özil in that summer window but enjoyed their best start to a season in years, topping the Premier League table at the turn of the year.
Meanwhile, Tottenham Hotspur spent the money earned from the sale of Gareth Bale on no fewer than seven players at the cost of over £90M. Manager André Villas-Boas was sacked before Christmas.
“What you want is to focus on your own strengths and make sure that you develop your team,” Wenger said on Friday. “The cohesion, the style of play that everybody knows are important qualities.”
Arsenal have looked to do that this summer, only adding Petr Čech and not diving into the transfer market as no players of the desired ability have become available.
“We live in a society that is hungry for news and news is good, I can understand that. But you have to absolutely be convinced that it strengthens your team.”
Mesut Özil was the only notable signing in 2013 and the difference he made, and has continue to make as Arsenal, is beyond belief.
The transfer market is a matter of quality, not quantity.