Arsenal's 2011-12 campaign was a roller-coaster ride with highs and lows that made you feel good about the club one week, and negatively the next.
Despite all the turmoil the Gunners went through this past year, there are still a lot of reasons to believe the future will be bright.
To ensure that the club's future is full of trophies, a couple of things must happen for Arsenal. Let's examine how the club can return to prominence.
Transfer spending and keeping stars
Arsenal won't ever spend on the same level as Manchester City and Chelsea, and that's a good thing because those two clubs' unnecessary spending on players—many of whom they don't need—can create lots of problems down the road.
When football's best players see that the Gunners will take care of their own, they will understand the club's intention to be a top team in the Premier League. This must be a priority for Arsenal.
Manager Arsene Wenger is one of the most intelligent men in all of football, and if he had more money to spend, he would be able to find the right talent for the Arsenal style of football. The club just needs to give him the resources to make this happen.
Since Wenger has been able to keep Arsenal in the top four of the league without making many major transfers, imagine the success the club could have if the Frenchman had more funds at his disposal.
Arsenal would be a legitimate threat to the chances of the two Manchester clubs winning the title next season if they made just a few more major signings.
Development of young talent
Arsenal has done very well throughout its history in developing young talent into world-class players. Thierry Henry, Cesc Fabregas and most recently, Jack Wilshere are just three of the many players that Wenger has developed from young footballers into amazing talents.
The Gunners must continue to develop young players so they don't have to fill holes in the squad by signing high-priced talent in the transfer market.
Arsenal must continue to help their young and promising players flourish, because having young talents rise from the youth team to the senior club and make an impact is an advantage that the Gunners can have over big spenders like Manchester City and Chelsea.
Arsenal should be a club that players want to come play for
The Gunners have a fantastic manager with a resume full of impressive accomplishments, a state-of-the-art stadium and a passionate fan base that gives the team tremendous support.
Players want to go where they feel they can win trophies regularly, even the top young players who have much of their careers left.
The club already has an impressive history, so if Arsenal can continue to make strong signings in the transfer market, they will be a club that the world's best will want to play for.