€700 million in search of the Champions League
The signing of Gabriel Jesús makes Arsenal exceed 700 million in transfers to try to return to the highest European competition.
Arsenal FC continues in its aim to improve the squad with new signings. The most recent to arrive is Gabriel Jesús, after paying more than 50 million to Manchester City for his transfer. It is the fourth reinforcement of this summer after the signings of Fábio Vieira, Matt Turner and Marquinhos.
Arsenal’s desperate spending spree has a purpose
Arteta wants to get the London team back to the top European competition after last year’s failure in the final weeks. They haven’t played in the Champions League since the 16/17 season. In that season he managed to finish first in the group, ahead of Cavani’s PSG, but were then eliminated with a resounding 10-2 aggregate score in the round of 16 against Bayern Munich, who would later fall in the quarter-finals against Real Madrid.
Since the summer of 2017, the Gunners have exceeded 700 million in signings but, so far, that money has not helped the club return to the top table. Season after season Arsenal has been on the verge of getting back. Even the 2019/20 Europa League final gave them an opening into the UCL but they lost it against Hazard’s Chelsea.
Pépé, Aubamenyang, Odegaard, Partey, Luiz, Lacazette
The most expensive signing in these six years has been that of Nicolas Pépé, for 80 million to the French Lille in 2019. The striker is still at the club, but without performing as expected. Up to a total of 35 additions, between transfers and purchases, during these seasons. Most of these signings have not met expectations and Arsenal is not managing to find the key to fight for the Premier League and play again in the highest European competition.
Many big-name signings landed in London, but they did not perform at the expected level. Aubamenyang, Odegaard, Thomas Partey, David Luiz, and Lacazette, were strong bets for the club and failed to get into the top four. A lot of money spent on transfers, but the sports project has not come to fruition.
The London team is betting on young people who grow up in the club and who already took a very important step at the end of last season. Smith Rowe and Saka remain the great hopes of the club. The signing of Jesús adds that necessary experience to finally, possibly, maybe return to the Champions League, after a tough slog playing in the Europa League. The competition in England, however, means it is still a huge ask.