The January transfer window certainly provides the chance for teams to add to their squads, strengthen their weak points, and in effect, sustain their challenge for the targets of the season. However, it is not always a good thing to bring in new players to the team in the middle of the season, as it is extremely impossible to know beforehand whether said player would be able to easily adapt to the new team, methods, and in most cases, new country.
With rumours fast going around, especially in Germany, that Arsenal are very close to signing Julian Draxler, it is an opportune time to figure out if Arsenal do actually need reinforcements. The much agreed upon notion is that Arsenal do need a striker, and a defender who can play on the wings or in the centre would certainly not hurt.
However, as the recent spate of injuries show, Arsenal needs much more than just that. What they really need is an injection of adrenaline, a high that will take them through the rest of the season. While Arsenal were already beginning to play well before Ozil came, his signed certainly helping the squad believe that they were a team to be feared of. With the defensive part of the game being rock solid, it was just what was needed for the team to kick on and rack up some points.
With a feisty festival fixture negotiated, it is a credit to the team that they were able to come out still leading the league. However, it certainly has made the team a lot tired, with most people seemingly near the fabled red zone. Theo Walcott going out on a long term injury was a big blow, and with Aaron Ramsey having a further blow in his recovery, it seems like he will be out of a crucial part of the February fixtures.
Which brings us nicely to the minefield that is February fixture list that are the months of February and March for Arsenal. Not only do they have to play Bayern Munich twice, the reigning superpower of European football, they also have to play Liverpool twice, albeit once in the FA Cup and once in the league. Smattered between these games are a few not-so-easy-to-win games as well, meaning Arsene Wenger would not have the courage to utilise his squad fully, relying more on his first team, pushing them to their fitness limits.
This is why the signing of Julian Draxler, if it happens, is so important. Granted, he would not be taking any immediate part in the title charge, but the team would get that much needed boost to fight for the title, just like Ozil did. In fact, there have been previous occasions during the Arsene Wenger reign at Arsenal that January signings actually had a very positive impact.
Not too long ago, Arsenal were playing tug of war with Zenit St. Petersburg for the signing of Andrei Arshavin. When the signing finally happened, it gave the team much needed fillip, with Arshavin quite literally dragging the team to a 4th place finish in the league. If that doesn’t convince you that a January signing is very beneficial, one can go to the legendary unbeaten season of 2003-2004. Despite not having lost in the league up to that point, the competition was still close. Wenger brought in the relatively high profile signing of Jose Antonio Reyes, who was ripping teams like Real Madrid and Barcelona apart in Spain, to add to the jewels he already had in the striking department. Needless to say, the team went on to win the league comfortably, with Reyes making significant contributions in the league as well as the other competitions.
True, Draxler may take time to become fit and integrate into the squad, and maybe Wenger should be looking more at Alvaro Morata or Diego Costa to get a deal done. But imagine this: after years of making profits in the transfer window, 2 mega signings of around 40 million in successive windows of the same season will certainly put Arsenal in the elite league. And as everyone probably already knows, Draxler is only 20 years old, and is every bit worth the hype around him.
So, the investment would be both a short term and a long term solution for Arsenal.
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