Arsenal fail in transfers but hopeful of top-four finish

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London, Feb 4: Arsene Wenger was satisfied with the players he had in the squad and did not even consider buying either a striker or a midfielder, but instead chose to fill the gap at left-back by signing Nacho Monreal from Malaga for £8.5million.

Arsenal were in the hunt for a striker throughout the season. Among the names linked were David Villa from Barcelona, Atletico Madrid's Adrian Lopez and Fernando Llorente from Athletic Bilbao.

EPL: Arsenal hopeful of top-four finish

Wenger chose to sign the Spanish left-back to fill the gap for the injured Kieran Gibbs. The Gunners fans were expecting more signings during this transfer window but Wenger decided not spend unnecessarily on expensive players instead go on a spending spree during the summer.

A deflected Lukas Podolski free-kick gave Arsenal three hard-fought points against Stoke City on Saturday. Gunners are currently on 41 points, 4 points behind fourth placed rivals Tottenham and had they managed to win against Liverpool, the Gunners could've been above Everton in fifth place.

Having Oliver Giroud, Theo Walcott, Lukas Podolski upfront may have prompted Wenger not to spend in the transfer market. The return of Mikel Arteta was quite satisfying as they were also linked with a midfield player.

And after months of speculations, Arsenal are considering not to sign David Villa, while the striker is willing to join Arsenal at the end of the season. As of other targets, Wenger felt £15million for Adrian Lopez was too high for a young player while Llorente joined Juventus.

However, signing any player would have been an added advantage for the Gunners. A crucial test awaits against Bayern Munich in the Champions League and Wenger will throw in a few youngsters for the upcoming FA Cup clash with Blackburn Rovers.

Having switched to a central attackers role, Walcott has already reached his career-best goals for the season. The 23-year old has 11 goals in 21 appearances this term.

Arsenal's only problem this season is inconsistency. Their longest winning run of four games came in December and they have so far failed to challenge for the fourth spot. They have never lost back-to-back games but the club has gone through their worst-ever standings since Wenger took over in 1996.

Wenger's side showed their mettle and courage to defy the odds against a rough Stoke City side. But can the Gunners repeat such a performance in the remaining games? With games coming up against Bayern Munich, North London rivals Tottenham and league leaders Manchester United, Arsenal really need to pull their socks up. But what is most important of all is a top-four finish this season.

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