10 Reasons Why Arsenal Must Be Bold in the January Transfer Window

James McNicholas@@jamesmcnicholasFeatured ColumnistDecember 30, 2013

10 Reasons Why Arsenal Must Be Bold in the January Transfer Window

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    In a matter of days, the January transfer window will fly open. Arsenal will have the opportunity to augment their squad with a new player or two.

    Publicly, at least, Arsene Wenger is downplaying his interest in new additions. After Arsenal's win against Newcastle, Wenger was asked about rumoured interest in Yohan Cabaye. Speaking to the Arsenal website, Wenger refuted the stories:

    No we don't look for midfielders because today we didn't have Mesut Ozil or Aaron Ramsey who stayed at home and we had still three good midfielders and I still had Mikel Arteta on the bench so there is no real need in there.

    However, that doesn't mean he won't be looking to strengthen in other areas.

    Arsenal are doing just fine with their current squad: They're currently top of the Premier League table. However, an acquisition in the January window would be a real statement of intent.

    Go on to the next slide to discover why Arsenal must be bold in the forthcoming transfer window.

The Title Beckons

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    Arsene Wenger and Arsenal have a unique opportunity to win the title this year.

    Manchester United, Manchester City and Chelsea are all bedding in new managers. Arsenal, however, are reaping the benefit of consistency.

    Next season, one would imagine that the aforementioned trio will all spend big and seek to take a significant stride forward. There is no guarantee that Arsenal will be able to keep pace.

    This is the Gunners' best chance to win the league since 2008. It may be some time before they get another opportunity like this.

    Arsenal must take advantage of everything they can in order to maximise their chances of ending the season with silverware. It would be better to spend money now and head in to the summer as champions than fall just short and be forced to play catch-up next year.

Manchester City Are on the March

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    Although Arsenal are currently top of the Premier League, they are just seventh in PremierLeague.com's Form Table.

    Manchester City are top. The Citizens' form is ominous, and they look like Arsenal's strongest competitor for the title.

    City's greatest strength is their squad depth. A new signing would help Arsenal toward matching City in that department.

Chelsea Will Buy

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    With Roman Abramovich as their owner, Chelsea's transfer budget is almost limitless.

    Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho is not averse to spending money, either. With all three of his current strikers struggling for goals, he's likely to be in the market for a new forward this January.

    According to Chris Richards of The Mirror, he is currently looking at former Arsenal target Gonzalo Higuain.

    If Chelsea were to get their hands on Higuain, their title threat would grow considerably.

Olivier Giroud Is Only Human

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    Arsenal's reliance on Olivier Giroud is well known. Aside from the out-of-favour Nicklas Bendtner, he is the only pure striker in the Arsenal squad.

    However, as his recent barren run of six Premier League games without a goal shows, he is only human. Sooner or later he is bound to hit another run of poor form or pick up an injury. Arsenal need an alternative to the Frenchman.

    Centre-forward is where Arsenal require reinforcement most. Giroud ought to relish the prospect of competition and some much-needed support.

Arsenal Have the Money

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    Despite spending £42.5 million on Mesut Ozil this summer, Arsenal still have plenty of money in the bank.

    According to the Gunners' latest financial results, Arsenal had £119.7 million of cash reserves as of May 2013. There is a sizeable amount left over for investment in the playing staff.

    For quite a long time, Arsenal were operating under financial restrictions and had to cut their cloth accordingly. However, that excuse is patently no longer valid.

Depth Is an Issue in Defence

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    Arsenal only have three senior centre-backs.

    Per Mertesacker, Laurent Kosicelny and Thomas Vermaelen are all very capable defenders. However, if two were to be struck down by injury, Arsene Wenger would be forced to move Bacary Sagna from his customary right-back slot.

    Although Sagna is a competent centre-half, he is needed at right-back. His deputy, Carl Jenkinson, is not yet ready to play regularly for a side with title aspirations.

    Arsenal should sign a centre-half to alleviate any concerns about their squad depth.

Diego Costa's Release Clause

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    According to Alan Wilson of the Daily Mirror, Atletico Madrid's Diego Costa has a release clause of £32.5 million.

    Given that he has 22 goals from 21 starts this season, that's a relative bargain. Costa would provide Arsenal with an alternative to Olivier Giroud and could help fire the Gunners to their first silverware since 2005.

    However, Costa won't be available for long. With a relatively affordable buyout clause, Europe's major clubs are likely to swoop sooner rather than later. If Arsene Wenger wants Costa, he must act quickly to get his man.

Arsenal's Form Is Dropping off

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    Although Arsenal still top the Premier League table, they have won just two of their last six games.

    A hectic schedule is beginning to take its toll on the Arsenal squad, and the team that seemed so slick in September is now beginning to look a little rough around the edges.

    A couple of new signings would help prevent any kind of rot setting in and put Arsenal back on track.

A Signing Would Boost Morale

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    When Mesut Ozil joined Arsenal at the start of September, it caused an explosion of joy around the club.

    That euphoria helped carry Arsenal through the early period of the season. Ozil's arrival gave fans and players alike a reason to believe.

    Another significant signing in January would a huge boost to the mood in the Arsenal camp.

It's Better to Be Safe Than Sorry

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    Maybe Arsenal don't absolutely need a new signing. However, surely it is better to be safe than sorry?

    Speaking after the win at Newcastle, Arsene Wenger told the club website:

    Look we believe in ourselves and we are determined to give our best absolutely and to turn back on this season at the end and think we have given our best. I hope it will be enough of course but it's a long way to go - it's too early to say that.

    If Arsenal are completely determined to leave this season with no regrets, they must at least attempt to acquire the striker they need to complete their squad.