Arsenal legend Michael Thomas has not held back as he spoke exclusively to CaughtOffside about what the squad needs after the hugely disappointing 0-0 draw at home to Burnley at the weekend.
The Gunners are going through a very poor run of form, following up a run of five wins in a row with another run of five games without victory, with the team also going four consecutive matches without scoring.
It’s clear that Mikel Arteta has a difficult job getting this Arsenal side into the top four this season, and Thomas wants to see the board give the manager the backing he needs.
The former midfielder believes his old club may need as many as three signings as he raised concerns about Alexandre Lacazette’s performance against Burnley.
“It was a really frustrating watch and the team lacked the killer instinct in the final third, which ultimately led to the stale 0-0 draw,” Thomas told CaughtOffside.
“Lacazette has to get himself in easy positions to put the ball in the net. He hangs back too much which puts a lot of pressure on the wide men to either score or put the ball exactly in his space. They also add to the squad with a striker, another midfielder and maybe even a winger.
“The Arsenal board MUST fund further big investments to improve this squad. The team have done well up until the halfway mark and now it’s time to give them that extra boost, give the fans the extra boost to carry the baton home and hopefully that’s a top four place come the end of the season.”
One of the big issues with Arsenal’s woes up front is the situation of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who is now out of favour after a loss of form, as well as disciplinary problems which saw Arteta strip him of the captaincy.
Thomas still thinks the Gabon international could have something to offer to top clubs, and paid tribute to the 32-year-old for being up there with Alexis Sanchez and Robin van Persie as one of the club’s best players of recent years.
“I am not sure what has been the problems accumulating for Aubameyang’s poor run of form to date. His ill discipline is also a concern but I am also aware that somewhere in there is a player that loves scoring goals,” Thomas said. “If his time at Arsenal is up then we must find a suitable replacement. I do believe he still has what it takes to score goals at the top level.
“A lot has been said about him recently but let’s not forget what he has done for the club. He’s been consistent with his goals, even during a time where the club were really struggling. He signed a new contract during a time where other big clubs were circulating for his services and has won trophies.
“I think he can be mentioned in the same breath as Alexis and RVP. Hopefully he doesn’t end up at a rival team like the previous.”