Arsene Wenger’s Ambition Key for Arsenal’s Success in the Future

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Arsene Wenger is a manager known for his frugality in the transfer market. After being bombarded by critics following the 2014 transfer window for not strengthening enough areas of the Arsenal squad with new players, many Arsenal fans even wanted Wenger out.

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This call for ‘the axe’ of Arsene Wenger became louder throughout the disappointing, inconsistent first half of Arsenal’s 2014/15 season, and arguably rightly so, as the Gunners surprisingly finished 2014 below fourth place.

Though Arsenal did finish the campaign relatively strongly, struggle for true progress in the league and in Europe has marked Arsenal’s past 10 years. This can be attributed to many factors, but one in particular sticks out the most: Arsene Wenger’s transfer policy.

The French ‘boss’ in North London is a renowned coach across European football, but the problem is that only some aspects of his transfer policy are equally renowned. Wenger is known for making profit in the market, especially by getting the best out of younger, partly unknown to-be stars like Samir Nasri, Thierry Henry, and Cesc Fabregas for examples (forbes.com). He’s made good money at times for Arsenal, but he obviously does so by being frugal, which can be for either good or bad.

However, in his and Arsenal’s case, Wenger’s frugality (metro.co.uk) has seemingly been for the worse over the past 10 years or so. Many other big Premier League clubs have enjoyed plenty of success domestically and abroad with the unquestionable help big spending can give.

Chelsea, for example, brought in several world class stars in 2014 and won the league virtually uncontested in May 2015. Ever since the Gunners won the FA Cup in 2005, it took 9 years for the them to win a single trophy again – being frugal can hurt.

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Arsenal hardly competed for a Premier League title in those years, and the club has struggled in competitions abroad like the Champions League in the past years, too (see the first round Monaco knockout this year).

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Many pundits, especially recently, have blamed this on Wenger’s frugality, saying that his ‘thriftiness’ shows a lack of ambition. The need to buy players is there for Arsenal, but Wenger refuses to address that need fully. He was heavily criticized at times over the past two summers and winters for not buying a top-quality striker and leaving the defensive midfield and back line too weak.

The fact is that this blame can be justified, too. A club like Arsenal should be competing for titles, but the once title-hyped 2014/15 season again featured a side filled with players too weak to do so.

This summer, Wenger can prove the doubters wrong. Though he’s already admitted plans to express his trend of not spending big in the upcoming months (per skysports.com), key players can still be brought in to a club which unarguably has true potential in the EPL and in the Champions League – not just in the FA Cup.

An un-wasted and ambitious summer of 2015 could propel Arsenal out of 3rd and 4th placed league finishes and into domestic and abroad title competitiveness in years to come; but this responsibility, which unquestionably exists due to the size and potential of Arsenal as a club, lies in the hands of Arsene Wenger and his hopefully ambitious, perhaps not-so-frugal actions in the transfer market.

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