Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger addressed the worry of many fans who are concerned about the club’s lack of transfer activity.
He wants you all to calm down, be patient, and trust in him. That’d be nice if, you know, the club seemed like they were trying. Unfortunately, the London giants haven’t exactly backed up Wenger’s claims that they’re making much of an effort.
The Frenchman told the club’s official website Thursday, “We are active. We are in a situation like Manchester United, like Chelsea, where everybody expects signings and at the moment not a lot has happened. There are 18 days to go, so that is a long time in the transfer market and we will be active. I cannot certify what the number [of new signings will be], but we will be active until the end, that is for sure.”
Manchester United haven’t spent a ton of money either – hardly any, for that matter – but at least they’ve been heavily involved in substantiated rumors of a high caliber. Plus, unlike Arsenal, they’re returning a League-winning squad already, and many United fans are distracted by the ridiculous ongoing Wayne Rooney saga anyway.
In Chelsea’s case, they’ve actually made a solid amount of signings in Andre Schurrle and Marco van Ginkel, and you have to imagine The Special One will have his hand in his pocket ready to throw money at some high-profile targets on or around Deadline Day.
As for Wenger, his reputation of a penny pincher precedes him, and the club hasn’t spent a single pound on transfers yet this window. With the squad barely making the Champions League cutoff last season, fans are pleading with the club to improve the squad as those above them are doing. Their crosstown rivals Tottenham Hotspur have already spent around £60 million ($94 million) on bringing players in. Whether you believe Gareth Bale will stay or go, Spurs are clearly ready, willing, and able to make improvements to the squad.
Meanwhile, having missed out on Gonzalo Higuain, Luis Suarez, and possibly Luiz Gustavo, Arsenal are getting so desperate they’ve been left to qualify the return of Jack Wilshire from injury as something akin to a transfer. Reports all summer suggesting Arsenal have a transfer kitty of nearly £70 million ($109.5 million) that’s sitting silently waiting to be touched are either completely unfounded, or correct – in which case Wenger seems even more gunshy than usual.
Remember way back when Ivan Gazidis delcared, “We have a certain amount of money which we’ve held in reserve. We also have new revenue streams coming on board and all of these things mean we can do some things which would excite you.” It’s been a long time since that day.
The fact the club felt the need to put up an official story dedicated to telling fans to stop worrying is worrying in and of itself.