The Arsenal have played dazzling football in their recent run of form both on the road and at the Emirates, but yesterday's 0-0 draw with City does a couple of things. It proves Arsenal have very good quality and can play with any club in the Premier League. It also begs the question as to if Arsene Wenger ought to move outside his typical refusal to spend mid-season and add a player during the January transfer window.
Many things come into play in this discussion. Primarily, Arsenal are just now becoming fully fit for the season and while they still miss their young center-back Thomas Vermaelen for the near future, Robin Van Persie has finally come alive and looks to be getting his left foot going again. Cesc Fabregas has combined well with start-up Samir Nasri and Arsenal are playing as strong attacking football as they have all season long. Matched with the imminent return of young gunner Aaron Ramsey from his loan spell with Nottingham Forest and Nicklas Bendtner finally recovering from his groin injury, Arsenal are full of depth at the top level and in their youth squads and it may be difficult for any new arrival to the Emirates to find the pitch on a regular basis.
With the December signing of 18-year-old Japanese star Ryo Miyaichi, Arsenal have proved they are not hesitant to pull the trigger on the right player for Wengerball, but his impact may not be felt until well into next year as he adjusts to the pace of the English game. There have also been links to French football star and Belgian International Eden Hazard, though Chelsea, Manchester United and Real Madrid are all involved in the speculation. Arsene Wenger has also looked to move young Mexican player Carlos Vela on a loan spell to allow him some regular match time, and there is a possibility he will use that as leverage to bring back Gary Cahill on a full transfer. Bolton is requesting 20 million Euros for the defender and it looks doubtful if Wenger will pull the trigger on it.
At this time last season, Arsenal supporters were begging for the Gunners to dive into the transfer market for a goal-keeper. One year later, the picture that has been painted is quite different. Lukasz Fabianski has not been flawless this season, however his time with the first team has displayed his ability to control the game from the back. His distribution is strong and the young Pole has certainly earned his place as the clubs #1 man in net. Wojciech Szczesny's has also played strongly in the back, kept some clean-sheets, and his recent contract extension with the Arsenal could instill a spirit of competition in goal, which would do nothing but help Arsenal's chances to win the Premier League. Manuel Alumunia is seeking a return to Spanish football Arsenal supporters world-wide would do nothing but support the keeper in that effort.
The question about transfers for the Arsenal are never "when" like it is with many clubs throughout the world, it's an "if." Wenger has a strict policy of building from within and only using the transfer window when absolutely necessary. But with the clubs return to match fitness, Arsenal have a very full squad of talented footballers who will make it difficult for any new import to find match time. Apart from the players mentioned already, Abou Diaby hopes to be near a return soon. Andrey Arshavin, the last big Arsenal purchase has continued to struggle in English football, though he still has shown a knack for being in the right place at the right time, compiling some big goals and assists for the North London side, while also looking disinterested at times.
Will Arsenal make a move this month and bring in some new blood? Supporters will have to wait and see. But as Arsenal sit four and two points behind United and City respectively in the league, and still being involved in the FA/Carling Cups and the Champions League, Gooners most certainly hope Arsene Wenger will make a move, as there is a real chance to bring some hardware back to the Emirates this season.
Who would you like to see make a move to North London?