If nothing else, Arsene Wenger learnt one thing this season: Arsenal are a world class striker away from the Premier League title. Supporters have been crying out for the club to invest heavily in a top centre-forward since Robin van Persie left the club but Wenger turned a blind eye to many of these pleas.
Instead, the Frenchman opted to place all of his faith and trust in Olivier Giroud, Theo Walcott and Danny Welbeck – and that decision ultimately cost the Gunners any chance of winning the title this season.
Distraught Welbeck injured at City
Arsenal now have a difficult decision to take ahead of the European Championship. With Welbeck out for up to nine months, the Gunners are in desperate need of another striker except this time, Wenger may break the bank to secure a world class talent.
Paris Saint-Germain man Zlatan Ibrahimovic is a free agent this summer and Arsenal could consider a move for the Sweden international. At 34 years old, he’s approaching the twilight years of his career but he still has plenty to offer and could do a job for at least two years.
Wenger must also decide whether to consider any bids for Walcott this summer. The 27-year-old was snubbed by Roy Hodgson ahead of Euro 2016 and he may push for a move away from the Emirates Stadium.
Walcott has struggled to inspire confidence this season and it wouldn’t be a huge surprise to see a mid-table Premier League side bid for the Arsenal frontman in the coming months. If nothing else, his raw speed and pedigree could convince a few of the top flight’s “lesser” sides to consider a move.
Whether Walcott leaves or not, Arsenal simply have to sign a striker before the beginning of the 2016/17 campaign.
Gunners fans won’t stand for another summer of incompetent transfer activity and Wenger knows there is plenty of pressure to deliver a first Premier League title since 2004. The likes of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. Alvaro Morata and Gonzalo Higuain have both been linked with a move to the Emirates Stadium and Arsenal will be quietly confident of acquiring at least one world class talent in the summer transfer window.
At the time of writing, Arsenal are priced at 11/2 to win the title in Paddy Power’s football betting odds. If they sign a striker, the Gunners stand a great chance – especially if they manage to keep hold of Walcott and Alexis Sanchez.
Arsenal cannot afford to fail again next season and Wenger knows it. Anything less than the title and the Frenchman may go from a Gooner to a goner.