Friday, 4 September 2015

Huge Arsenal Setback As Welbeck Undergoes Surgery

The transfer door could still be heard slamming shut yesterday when Arsenal announced Danny Welbeck had suffered a setback and would have to undergo surgery on his knee injury. We had been told he will be out for months, but it's anyone's guess exactly how many months that will be. He's taken over four months to get to the point where surgery has been required and it's hard to believe he'll be out for a shorter term than that.

The news came only a year and a day after Welbeck joined the club on last season's deadline day as a replacement for the then injured Olivier Giroud. He was actually only a last minute purchase for Arsenal after Giroud picked up an injury against Everton which would keep him out for four months. It smelled of desperation at the time, but United were prepared to sell him as Luis van Gaal rang the changes and Arsenal needed a striker.

He had his own problems with injuries in that first season, but he was the first choice striker until Giroud returned with Theo Walcott also injured and Arsene Wenger unwilling to use Lukas Podolski. During that time Alexis Sanchez even played for a few games as the central striker as the team struggled to keep pace with the league leaders. Welbeck only managed four league goals last season, but he did get a Champions League hat trick against Galatasaray and the all important winner in the FA Cup quarter final at United.

There can't be many Arsenal fans who thought the team had adequate striking options before Welbeck underwent his surgery and surely even those who thought they had enough options can no longer believe it. Joel Campbell wasn't loaned out this summer and he might well find himself in with a few first team chances despite his failure to impress with previous opportunities. We might well wonder whether Chuba Akpom might be recalled from his loan spell at Hull if it's possible to do so.

For me it comes back to the failure to add a striker this summer despite the glaring need for one and a top class one too. If the season goes pear shaped (and I sincerely hope it doesn't) it will come back to inaction this summer when others have strengthened. The squad has to keep moving forward if it's going to progress and there has been no sense of that this summer.

We have been told so often that the club are building for the future, but there has to be a time when that future becomes the present and the team delivers. The FA Cup wins of the last two seasons have been great, but the team has to put in a genuine challenge for the title sooner rather than later. The exodus of the best players has stopped and quality players are moving in the opposite direction now.

To retain players like Alexis and Mesut Ozil the team has to be right up there in the league and the Champions League too and I can't imagine those players can be too happy about the transfer inaction this summer. It wasn't down to a lack of funds and it appears the players the boss wanted weren't available so he chose not to buy alternatives. It's a decision which could come to haunt him with only a couple of injuries and we can only hope it doesn't.

I know there are some fans out there who would see the team suffer just to see the boss leave, but I can't say I belong to that group. I have been baffled by the lack of players signed this summer just like so many others, but I still want the team to win every single game they play and I always will. My confidence and belief have certainly take a dent this summer and I can only hope the same can't be said for the players.

The feel good factor from the second half of last season has gone and the hopes of winning the league now seem very faint with only four games played. The players must be looking at the players other clubs have signed and wondering why Arsenal haven't signed anyone besides Petr Cech. Those players are going to have to put in a long hard stint to have any chance of winning a trophy for the third season in a row.

That's it for today.

See you tomorrow.

1 comment:

  1. That is what happens when you make bad decisions. Last year, Arsenal were in need of a central defender, but Arsene went on to bring in an injury-prone average striker for 16 millions. That too when he had the very talented and very deadly striker in Benik Afobe in the reserves. He sent him away and bought a dud. Why do you have all these reserves when you don't want to give them a chance. Benik Afobe ended up with 30+ goals last season, while Welbeck ..... No comments