One season on: observations since manager Glory Days arrival at Arsenal
Reflective: Arsenal manager Glory Days has had a positive effect on the Gunners
Its been approximately one season since the arrival of Australian manager Glory Days to the North London club. Arsenal sits comfortably in eight place with 26 points and is in prime position to push to the top with only a four point gap separating the Gunners and league leader Preston North End. Some observations since the arrival of manager Glory Days:
Financial stability forces frugal spending
An interesting development is Arsenals spending compared to last season. Last season, the North London sanctioned lavish purchases such as Ukrainian central defender Yaroslav Rakitskiy for 15 million pounds and Togolese utility player Alaixys Romao for 7.5 million pounds however this season, the largest sum spent on a player was 6.5 million on Algerian striker Islam Slimani.
While some may consider a lack of large transfer expenditure as a lack of ambition, others will look at it as a patient and careful approach and necessary in an era of financial responsibility. Arsenal has a solid squad with a plethora of talent however Glory Days will not spend unless the right player is made available as Rakitskiy and Romao have demonstrated. A change in policy may come if they return to the Premier League however for the time being a sensible and sustainable model is necessary.
Youth is the way forward
Since the appointment of manager Glory Days, he has had a clear ambit: give youth a chance. One of the major criticisms levelled at North London was their overreliance on older players with no youth products or young prospects given an opportunity to shine at the North London club however manager Glory Days changed that. First, the Australian manager bought youth to bolster the youth team with the hopes of developing into first team contributor then he proceeded to give promising youngsters Pedro Obiang and Jordan Ferri a chance to prosper in the first team however their selections were picked on good recent form rather than obligation. They have emerged as real talents and have contributed immediately with a combined nine goals and five assists, with only sixteen league matches gone; there isnt any reason why the talented duo cant add to that tally.
Arsenal has considerable squad options
The Arsenal squad has undergone a myriad of changes however a noticeable difference is the considerable depth of the squad. There are two players for every position and the depth has provided a crucial part in their extended run in both competitions while maintaining momentum in the league.