Fortunes have changed drastically for Arsenal in recent years, as they have been relegated from being a team challenging for top honors season after season, to a team who seems somewhat content with a top 4 finish. The reason for this has been narrowed down to the lack of homegrown talent by some, who think that it is important for an English club to possess more English players than foreign players, and not the other way around.
Pires was part of “the Invincibles” squad who won the league without a single defeat back in 2003-04. That enviable team boasted the likes of English defenders Ashley Cole and Sol Campbell, who were both in their prime. The duo’s quality and experience helped Arsenal dominate the entire season.
Arsenal’s rivals Manchester United and Chelsea too have established English players in their squads now like Wayne Rooney, Ashley Young, Michael Carrick, John Terry and Frank Lampard. This has further emphasized the fact that an English core is vital for an English team.
Arsenal have also taken steps in that direction after they recently extended the contract of five British players namely Theo Walcott, Jack Wilshere, Aaron Ramsey, Carl Jenkinson and Kieran Gibbs, but Pires still feels that this quintet might need a few more years before they are capable of delivering trophies. Therefore, Pires feels that Wenger’s need of the hour would be to sign established English players.
According to Metro.co.uk, the player spoke to the local media and said, “The difference between Arsenal today and my generation is that we had a backbone of English players,”
“The club has some very good [English] youngsters now but they lack experience.”
“The only solution for Arsenal is to buy some more English players.”
Do you agree with Pires’ opinions? Do Arsenal need to bring in quality English players to end their trophy drought?