Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is running out of time to adequately bolster the strikeforce ahead of the new season, with only three weeks remaining until the new Premier League campaign starts. The Gunners currently only have Olivier Giroud as their first-choice centre-forward, but the French international has been given a late holiday after his Euro 2016 excursions which means he could miss Arsenal’s opening game.
Danny Welbeck was brought in to compete with Giroud for a starting place, while at times operating as a wide forward for the Londoners, but the English international is currently sidelined with a lengthy knee injury that will see him out of action until March. As a result, Arsenal have very little in the way of attacking options to lead the line. Theo Walcott and Alexis Sanchez can play as makeshift centre-forwards, but Arsenal still need another permanent striker.
As for transfer targets, Wenger’s men have been linked with three players this summer – Napoli’s Gonzalo Higuain, Olympique Lyonnais’ Alexandre Lacazette and Inter Milan’s Mauro Icardi. However, they have made little progress so far with Napoli holding out for a sky-high asking price, Lyon keen to keep Lacazette in France and Icardi rejecting rumours that his agent held talks with Arsenal this summer.
Arsenal signed pacey Japanese striker Takuma Asano, but it’s unlikely he would be thrown into the deep end in the Premier League, and will instead be used sparingly or in the U21 squad. Chuba Akpom is young striker Arsenal could look to, but his lack of top-level experience would be a gamble in their opening domestic outing against Liverpool. Wenger hasn’t had any luck in his pursuit for strikers, and even saw Jamie Vardy spurn his advances.
The Leicester City striker looked nailed on to join Arsenal ahead of the new season, but instead made a U-turn and signed a new deal with the Foxes. Arsenal are running out of time to bolster the frontline as pre-season has already begun and they will want a forward to be integrated before the Premier League campaign begins.
Vfl Wolfsburg’s Julian Draxler has cropped up on the rumour mill, but the German international is more of a wide man than a centre-forward, a position Arsenal have in abundance, but who will they bring in to lead the line? Giroud could miss the start of the season so will Wenger sign a new face in the attack? Or will a forward operate as a makeshift striker?