After a disappointing end to last season, numerous Arsenal fans were calling for several players to be booted out of the club. I remember logging onto Twitter one day and seeing a great number of Arsenal fans I follow, tweeting the five players they wanted Wenger to sell this summer.
Whilst this may have been a bit of a rash reaction to a poor end to the season, it was understandable, emotions were running high, and many fans were finding it difficult to come to terms that Arsenal had ended their sixth consecutive season without a trophy. Out of all the names that popped up, one of the names that was on everybody’s lips was, Nicklas Bendtner.
It was no surprise really; all too often Bendtner is frustrating to watch. When attending matches, I would regularly witness his own fans throwing abuse in his direction; over the past couple of seasons it’s been plain to see that the Danish striker is not a favourite amongst the Emirates faithful.
In ninety-nine percent of these tweets, Bendtner was joined by another player who has recently left the club on loan, Denilson. The Brazilian midfielder fell into a similar category to Bendtner, you just didn’t know what you was going to get from him. Some games he’d do his job well, sitting behind the playmaker, moving the ball on with no fuss. Yet in some games, he struggled to string passes together and at times he was completely non-existent in the defensive third of the pitch. I agreed with these Arsenal fans, I didn’t want them at Arsenal any longer.
Fast-forward to the present day and I find myself with a completely different view on things, a view that I believe a lot of Arsenal fans are not too proud to admit to. After the loss of Cesc Fabregas and the potential departure of Samir Nasri, the Arsenal midfield is starting to look desperately thin.
Pair this with the departure of Carlos Vela on loan, the African Cup of Nations in January and an injury prone Robin Van Persie, by the turn of the New Year, Arsenal may well have no senior strikers fit. By now, many Arsenal fans will have expected that new signings would be in place to help improve a squad that has been short of winning trophies one too many times.
Unless Wenger has genuine belief that Benik Afobe or Chuks Aneke can step up to the first team this season, I think it would be foolish to sell Bendtner. Arsenal’s options in midfield at the moment are Song, Wilshere, Ramsey, Diaby, Rosicky, Frimpong and Nasri, one may leave soon, two are injured and one is suspended for three games. Denilson may not provide a massive amount of quality, but it would have been nice to have the experience of the Brazilian to call on this weekend against Liverpool. It seems like now Arsenal are in need of two players many fans were originally discarding as, not good enough for their beloved football club.