‘Arsenal need as big a clear out as Man United this summer’, says Gunners legend Ray Parlour
Ray Parlour believes the Arsenal squad needs as big a squad makeover as Manchester United this summer.
The lack of depth in the Gunners’ squad was highlighted in Sunday’s surprise 3-2 defeat to Crystal Palace at the Emirates Stadium.
Unai Emery opted to make SIX changes to the team that beat Napoli during the week to seal their place in the Europa League semi-finals, including swapping out his entire defensive line, and it backfired badly.
Arsenal were booed off at half-time as they trailed 1-0 from Christian Benteke’s first goal in a year, but it went from bad to worse after the break as they conceded two more goals, largely thanks to a defensive horror show from Shkodran Mustafi.
The Gunners rallied with goals from Mesut Ozil and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, but it was not enough to turn around the game.
And club legend Parlour believes the result shows just how much work Emery has to do this summer when the transfer window reopens.
Speaking on Monday’s Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast, the former midfielder said: “This was always going to be a big test for Emery this season.
“I said at the start of the season if they get fourth place it would be a brilliant season for Arsenal.
“He’s still finding out his squad and the transfer window is going to be very interesting to see what he does, whether he moves any players out and brings more in.
“As much as Manchester United need a big clear out, Arsenal probably do as well.”
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The defeat to Palace ended a run of ten straight league home wins for Arsenal.
But the Romford Pele refused to blame Emery for his much-changed squad, and insisted the manager should be praised for his first season in charge of the north London side.
“After seeing Manchester United and Spurs lose, it was a really good opportunity at home,” he added.
“Arsenal have had a great record at the Emirates this year – they have only lost to Manchester City in the top six, have drawn with Liverpool and haven beat Man United, Spurs and Chelsea.
“So you would have fancied them, I didn’t see five goals in the game.
“The team selection was very strange. They’d just come off the Napoli win and you’re thinking, ‘let’s kick on now, there’s only four games left, play your strongest team’, but he didn’t.
“There were a few mistakes from the manager, but you can’t knock him because he’s done a wonderful job so far.”
Source: SportsLatest TS