Arsenal’s team is pictured in the stadium prior to the UEFA Champions League round of sixteen football match between FC Bayern Munich and Arsenal in Munich, southern Germany, on February 15, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Christof STACHE
Arsenal’s transfer policy has been slammed by Emmanuel Petit, with the Gunners accused of panic buying in recent years.Throughout Arsene Wenger’s reign, a close eye has been kept on the club’s bank balance.
That was understandable during a period in which the Premier League heavyweight moved home from Highbury to Emirates Stadium.They have, however, loosened the purse strings on few occasions in recent years, and those that have been acquired have not always delivered.
Sizeable fees were paid for Swiss midfielder Granit Xhaka and German defender Shkodran Mustafi last summer, but Petit believes those deals were rushed into without due care and consideration.
The former midfielder, who won the Premier League title and the FA Cup with the Gunners, told BT Sport: “The reason why Arsenal are not at the top of the league and fighting for the big titles is because half of the team is not good enough to play for Arsenal. It’s as simple as that.
“Arsene Wenger has to change his policy. They’ve got the money now in the bank, they’ve got a lot of money.“I spoke with Mr. Dein two weeks ago. They’ve got a lot of money in the bank, they’re rich. Financially they have no problem, they paid back the loan for the Emirates Stadium.
“They spent £30-£40m on players like Mustafi, Xhaka for example. They didn’t do that in a good way, they did it in panic.”Petit added while on the theme of recruitment: “What Arsenal have been doing in the transfer market for me I have not been impressed a lot.
“The recent two or three years you know, I think they need to change that.“Last summer for example, I have been very disappointed by the fight, it’s like they were signing very quickly the last few days before the end of the market.
“Top clubs you analyse very precisely what you need about six months of a year before the end of the season.“So I think Arsenal have to react in a better way in the transfer market and they have to change the salary cap.
“They cannot compete with the biggest clubs in Europe if they don’t change that because on top of that Arsenal haven’t won trophies, big trophies for so many years.“If you don’t improve those two things I think it will be very difficult to bring big players to Arsenal.”