There’s just one month remaining in the transfer window, and Arsenal still have work to do.
It was always going to be an extremely busy summer for Arsenal.
Not only did they need to trim their squad down, they also had to strengthen in several different positions in order to be ready for the new season.
So far, it’s been okay.
Sead Kolasinac should add quality and versatility to the backline, while Alexandre Lacazette is the big-money striker fans have been crying out for. With no first team players being sold, Arsenal have improved their squad.
There are, though, still at least two more areas that Arsenal can strengthen in.
One area that stands out is central midfield.
Xhaka and Ramsey are forming a cohesive partnership, but there are question marks over the depth available there.
If Xhaka is unavailable, neither Coquelin or Elneny would be able to provide the same passing ability from deep.
You’d also have to question if either of them have the quality to play in the Arsenal midfield long-term should Ramsey continue to have problems with his hamstrings.
In an ideal world, Arsenal would be looking to sign a midfielder capable of orchestrating play from deep, but also providing a threat going forward.
In other words, they should be looking to fill that Santi Cazorla-sized hole that’s still in the squad.
Further up the pitch, Arsenal have plenty of wingers but perhaps not the quality in depth.
Their current interest in Thomas Lemar is, perhaps, a sign that Arsene Wenger feels he needs additional quality in this area.
Beyond Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil, there’s the eternally frustrating Theo Walcott, a player you always feel can offer more, and Danny Welbeck, a player who gives everything except a quality end product.
Alex Iwobi is another who struggles with end product, though does have the excuse of inexperience. End product is the buzz phrase, and it’s noticeable that besides Walcott, who does at least score goals, there’s not much of it beyond Alexis and Ozil.
The backline is another area of concern.
Arsenal would have the numbers if not for the back three being in a permanent state of flux.
Between Mertesacker being unable to to play every game, Koscielny’s injury problems, Mustafi’s tendency to pick up cards and Gabriel’s tendency to be unreliable, Arsenal fielding an unchanged back three of first choice defenders looks very unlikely.
Wenger may feel he has plenty of options, but another centre back here would firm up those options beyond all doubt.
Success on the pitch isn’t always down to new signings. However, short of tremendous improvement from the fringe players in the squad, Arsenal will require two or three more signings if they want to compete for the Premier League.