This is a guest post by sportswriter Thomas Rooney
It was thought by many that this current transfer window would see a change for Arsenal. Many believed that the club would spend big this month to accommodate for injuries and to try and help the team force their way back into the top four of the Premier League.
However, speaking about the Gunners options in the coming weeks, Peter Hill-Wood has revealed that Arsene Wenger will not be splashing the cash – far from it. Instead, the Arsenal chairman says that the club has got to be ‘run in a sensible way’.
This is fair enough I suppose. No Arsenal fan wants the club’s future finances put in jeopardy because of one massive spending spree. However, can we not expect a bit more transfer activity than usual?
Well, from what Hill-Wood had to say, it seems not. He said that there is ‘not a lot of money anywhere’ in football at the moment and that this will restrict what Arsenal spends in the coming weeks.
The chairman finished by saying that he had faith in the ‘young, talented players at the club’ to make sure that the second half to Arsenal’s season is a successful one. He also hinted that a couple of the younger players, who hadn’t been given much of a game as yet, will get their chance before long.
The fact that Arsenal have talented youngsters cannot be argued – everyone knows that. However, the team is in a situation right now where there is a distinct possibility that it could miss out on Champions League football next season. Is the young talent enough to get out of this predicament?
My personal opinion is that one or two big name signings wouldn’t do any harm. Even if it was the two players that have already been linked – Mikel Arteta and Shay Given. They would both provide valuable experience amongst the Arsenal team.
The thing is, £20m would be needed to prize these two away from their current clubs and going by what Hill-Wood has had to say – this just isn’t going to happen.
Anyway, enough about that! A more immediate issue is that of the FA Cup third round tie against Plymouth tomorrow. The Championship side travel to the Emirates in hope rather than expectation and in all honesty, it should be a comfortable win for Wenger’s men.
As Barnsley proved last season though, anything can happen in the FA Cup, so Arsenal shouldn’t take their opposition lightly. It should be treated like any other game and concentration levels should be as high as ever.
It will be interesting to see what team Wenger puts out, but I would imagine that it will be as strong as possible. Arsenal can’t afford to be knocked out at this stage, after all.
As far as the omens are concerned, everything is in favour of a home win. Plymouth have never beaten Arsenal, they have lost their last three away games and have failed to score in four on the road. Perhaps most significantly though, they lost to eventual winners Portsmouth last season – so perhaps that will happen again this year!
Let’s hope so. Arsenal fans could do with a trophy.