Pires explains that Arsenal are struggling due to the absence of Cazorla

Arsenal have once again flattered to deceive during the current Premier League campaign and the best the Gunners can now hope for is a mere place in the top four once again.

It did look like Arsenal could potentially challenge for the title following a strong start to the season and club legend Robert Pires has explained that the North London side's struggles have been down to the absence of injured star midfielder Santi Cazorla.

Pires told Sky Sports News, "When you see the names on the paper they are great players like Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez. The most important [thing] is missing Santi Cazorla. He is one of the best players at Arsenal. He's been injured for four months now and this is a real problem for Arsenal."

Ozil to decide Arsenal future soon


Mesut Ozil’s long term future Arsenal has been subject to much speculation over the past few months and it is widely believed that the German international could potentially end up leaving the Emirates Stadium next summer if he does not sign a new contract.

Ozil has finally gone on to provide an update regarding his contractual situation at Arsenal and has hinted that he could extend his stay with the North London side beyond the end of the current campaign.

He told German newspaper Welt am Sonntag, "You think Wenger tells the journalists [about my future] before he tells me? I know him differently. I have a contract until 2018 in London and I feel very comfortable there. We'll talk soon and then make a decision."

Arsenal eye a move for Kasper Schmeichel

Petr Cech is undoubtedly one of the best goalkeepers to have graced the Premier League but it has to be said that the veteran custodian has not been at his supreme best during the current campaign for Arsenal.

Cech has made numerous uncharacteristic errors throughout the course of the season and it is believed that Arsenal could look to find a replacement of the 34-year-old, who is clearly regressing at the moment, next season.

Now in reports from the Daily Mirror, revelations have been made that Arsenal are considering a shock move for Leicester City star Kasper Schmeichel. Schmeichel played a key role in helping Leicester win the title last season and he has continued his fine form during the current campaign as well, despite the Foxes’ struggles.

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger is believed to be an admirer of Schmeichel and there have been suggestions that the Frenchman could make a swoop for the 30-year-old if he stays put at the Emirates Stadium next season.

Merson believes Patrick Vieira will take over at Arsenal

The future of Arsene Wenger at Arsenal remains unclear and while the speculation rumbles on, the Gunners have been linked with names such as Max Allegri, Thomas Tuchel and Eddie Howe as potential replacements for the Frenchman.

Former Arsenal star Paul Merson has hinted at another name in the running for the managerial job at the Emirates Stadium by suggesting club legend Patrick Vieira.

Vieira is currently the manager of MLS side New York City FC and Merson believes that the former midfielder will arrive at Arsenal in 2018, with Wenger set to see out another year with the Gunners.

Merson told Sky Sports, "My instincts tell me he's going to sign and he's waiting for a big win and he'll sign for another year. I wouldn't be surprised if he stays a year and then Patrick Vieira comes in.

"Yes. He's learning his trade over at New York City, he's been at Man City, and he brings a winning mentality, he won't take any rubbish.

"Arsenal look too nice at the moment. I think that could happen and the fans would love that. The players don't seem like they're working that hard for the manager at the moment, which is sad.

"Whoever comes in it's going to be a step-up - it's a big, big football club but I don't see a problem. He's a legend, which gives you some leeway. I just think he'll get his team playing the way he played the game, which is what they need at the moment."

Iwobi urges more respect towards Wenger from the Arsenal fans

Arsene Wenger has come under a lot of criticism in recent times from the fans following another disappointing campaign and the supporters are looking to pressurize the Frenchman to leave the Emirates Stadium at the end of the season by organizing protest marches, unfurling banners during games and even flying planes over stadiums with anti-Wenger messages.

Arsenal attacker Alex Iwobi has not been left too impressed with the protests though and has urged the club faithful to show more respect towards Wenger after all he has achieved with the club during his two decade long reign.

Iwobi told the Daily Mail after Nigeria's friendly draw with Senegal on Thursday night, “They need to have a bit more respect in my opinion.

“I mean, he's been at the club for 20 years, he's achieved a lot, obviously they're a bit impatient with the results and where they want to finish. We also want to finish there, we want to win the league like anyone else, I can guarantee we are trying our hardest.

“Whatever happens we are the players, we affect the result. We don't really look at the banners or what fans are screaming, we focus on trying to do our jobs on the pitch.”