Arsenal legend Ray Parlour has given praise to former Invincibles teammate Edu in a recent interview with JBI International.
Additionally, Parlour also spoke on Arsenal’s recent transfer deals, including the Gunners’ purchase of maligned Chelsea star Kai Havertz for £65 million.
Moreover, the Romford Pele also spoke on Arsenal’s current squad and where he feels they need to strengthen ahead of the 2023/24 Premier League season.
What did Arsenal legend Ray Parlour have to say regarding Edu?
Parlour attributed much of Arsenal’s recent success in the transfer window – such as the acquisitions of Havertz and Declan Rice – to Edu, who he says has been working ‘non-stop’ to get deals over the line.
On Edu, he said: “The owners know that they have a manager that could potentially win them the league title. I think they’ve let the purse strings go to bring in the best players for Arsenal to try and achieve that.
“Edu deserves a lot of credit. I’m very lucky to be able to go with Arsenal on the pre-season tours to America. Last year, he was on his phone non-stop trying to get deals done. It’s a difficult job.
“When players are under contract, they can sit tight and refuse to move, so Edu deserves a lot of credit for what he has accomplished over the last couple of transfer windows.”
What did Parlour have to say about Kai Havertz?
While Arsenal’s transfer of Kai Havertz has raised questions from some supporters, Parlour is optimistic about the deal. He compared the transfer to the signing of Martin Odegaard and he fancies Havertz to make a big impression during his time at the Emirates Stadium.
On Havertz, Parlour said: “Kai Havertz has a massive opportunity. I don’t think we’ve seen the real Havertz over the last couple of seasons, especially after Thomas Tuchel left the club. I think he could be a really good signing. You need quality back-up across all positions, and I think he can play in a number of roles for Arsenal.
“We saw him play as a number nine for Chelsea, but I don’t think that is his best position. I can see him playing deeper than that at Arsenal, and with the club returning to the Champions League, you need to have that strength in depth.”
Parlour on how he thinks Arsenal could improve further
While Parlour is impressed with the Gunners’ dealings, he still thinks there is work to be done in terms of strengthening the overall squad.
He urges Arteta to sign a striker – despite this, he still has praise for Arsenal’s current centre-forwards, Eddie Nketiah and Gabriel Jesus.
He said: “I always think that you need a bit of back-up. Eddie Nketiah did really well when he came into the team last season, but the Arsenal sides I was part of always had four really good strikers. I know that a lot of teams play with one forward now, but in my teams we had Nwankwo Kanu, Sylvain Wiltord and obviously Thierry [Henry] and Dennis [Bergkamp].
“I do think we need that extra striker. If Gabriel Jesus gets injured again, is Eddie going to be able to come in and do well enough in the Champions League? I know that we could play with a false nine, but I would like that security of having an out-and-out striker.”