You’ve already known it was happening, but today we got confirmation of the signing of one Uruguayan midfielder. Lucas Torreira officially joins Arsenal in the wake of his elimination from the World Cup for somewhere between €25 and €30 million.
Add Lichtsteiner, Bernd Leno and Sokratis to the list, and the club has done a terrific job at getting the business done early. That was probably the biggest criticism of Arsenal over the past few years; the inability to get big moves done quickly.
So, here are some nice words for our three-headed Hydra of Ivan Gazidis, Sven Mislintat and Raul Sanllehi.
Lucas Torreira and the Changing of the Guard
The addition of Lucas Torreira fills a very real need in this Arsenal team; a deep-lying playmaker. The club has been without such a player since Santi Cazorla went down injured almost two years ago.
This is a theme so far in the transfer window. With Mathieu Debuchy leaving the club in January, Hector Bellerin was our only real option at right-back. Enter Stephan Lichtsteiner.
With Arsenal’s defense taking a step backwards last season, and club captain Laurent Koscielny out injured until December, there was a need for an experienced central defender in the squad. Enter Sokratis Papastathopoulos.
Petr Cech has been out of form for months, and David Ospina may leave the club, so the club needed a new ‘keeper. Enter Bernd Leno.
While this Arsenal team suffers from a dearth of pacey wingers, that is the only real issue that has gone unaddressed this transfer window. Truly this is something new for many Gooners.
No More Emergency Signings
Remember the 8-2 loss to United? Sorry to bring up bad memories, but do you also remember the spending spree just after the match? After losing both Cesc Fabregas and Samir Nasri in the same window, the club tried to replace them with a series of players, some good and some bad.
While Per Mertesacker and Mikel Arteta were certainly good additions, even if they didn’t directly address the loss of creativity. However, we also saw Park Chu-Young and Andre Santos join the club, neither of which made a positive impact.
More recently, think of Lucas Perez. When the team was in need of a new striker, they turned to the Spaniard. However, instead of breaking the bank to bring in Alexandre Lacazette (who came a year later) or perhaps even Karim Benzema, they pussyfooted around until nearly the zero hour.
That summer, what business there was to do wasn’t done until the dying embers of the window. Not this season.
It would be premature to declare all of the signings unmitigated successes just yet, however each one is very positive and addresses very real concerns in the team.
One Thing Left
With the new head coach in place, plus four seemingly-quality signings completed, there is but one thing left to do. Win some football.
The new season kicks off in just over a month against Manchester City, and the squad is back in training now. We will see just how good or bad the project is then. However, for now, everything is looking up.
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