View From The Sphere

Why Arsene Wenger chose not to sign a centre-back in January


Arsene Wenger has attempted to explain his reasons for not signing a centre-back in the January transfer window.

With Thomas Vermaelen injured long-term, the manager admits he was tempted to bring in at least a short-term solution. But the Frenchman claims he did not expect Vermaelen to be out for so long, and added that there weren’t many great options available on the market. He said:

‘He had a setback at the end of January but we hoped he would play the second part of the season. But football is not a supermarket where you go and say ‘I want a good player, give me one please’ you must find them and in the middle of the season to find a player who strengthens Arsenal is not easy.’

‘We did not have Vermaelen for the whole season but, if you look at the numbers, we conceded less goals from open play than any other team in the league. So it is not all negative, even defensively.’

As ever, more spin from Wenger. Yes we’ve conceded less goals from open play than any other team, but that’s because most of our goals are conceded from the same basic set-piece errors. Conveniently Wenger didn’t mention those, the same weaknesses that have been a problem for years.

Also, with Johan Djourou, Laurent Koscielny and Sebastien Squillaci our only senior options at centre-back, to say he can’t find a better one is ridiculous. Squillaci has had a poor season, and Koscielny has been up and down. Only Djourou has been consistent, and when you get to the stage when you’re relying on young and untried Ignasi Miquel to play in the first-team, you’re in trouble, and you’re not going to struggle to find a player who’s an improvement. Christopher Samba wanted to leave Blackburn in January and he would have been absolutely ideal.

So, in the end the weakest Man United team for decades is going to win the league. Either that, or Chelsea will overtake them, having overtaken Spurs, Man City and us in the last few months. Wenger could have won this league if he’d shown just a little more ambition. It wouldn’t have bankrupt the club.

Still, it’ll be nice to see Vermaelen back this weekend.

Click HERE to see the original article. This article was first published on ArsenalInsider

Written by Mark Brus

Share this article


  • Arsenal says:


  • Arsenal says:


  • cent says:

    Why wenger

  • cesc says:

    djuoruo is a joke. if we are going to rely on him next season we’ve got big big problems. it will be another blank year.
    i’ve studied djuoruo all season and the man is unbelievably poor.
    he doesn’t know how to mark. he is always getting caught out of position.
    and when he gets his head down and goes chasing up the field like a school kid i cringe.
    he just doesn’t know the basics about defending. i will go so far to say he is as poor as senderos.

  • realistic tony says:

    yes i heard that samba was available for 6-8 million…the guy would have been perfect. Apparently he was “immense” today against the hammers. The reason wenger didnt bid for him is that he (AW) may have admitted his error in signing kos and squill if samba was brought in.I suppose wenger had made his bed and had to lie in it.He risked a whole season on 2 untested performers, one average the other quite frankly a joke.Not only that but he is now risking players leaving as you can imagine they will be thinking: another trophyless season ahead playing with these muppets at the back!!

  • Domhuaille says:

    Another bunch of clueless Gloomers and Doomers, anti-Wengerites and buy,buy…sell,sell anyone we don’t like whiners and moaners!
    This blog is a total piece of shite posted by Gutless Blogger and pandering to the Wenger-out brigade and the thundercxloud behind every silver lining mob.
    Djourou is still developing as is Kos. Vermaelen is back and the possible arrival of Vertonghen in the summer should shut you lot up for at least 2 minutes!!!!
    You aren’t able to tie Wenger’s shoelaces so go back to your meaningless,drab ¬®lives¬® and leave the management of the Arsenal to professionals!

  • oz gooner says:

    Hey Domhuaille (if that’s your real name ?)Why don’t you be a man and say what you really think !!??

  • realistic tony says:

    i imagine good ol’ domhuaille was at the stoke game creaming over our performance with the greatest defensive unit ever assembled by a footballing genius!…they say there’s one born every minute…i guess this gullible idiot still believes in father xmas and fairies. Well dom’ will we win anything next year???

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *