French journalist Julien Laurens believes that Arsenal will be challenging for a possible third-place finish last season.
The reporter did admit that the Gunners like everyone else have a while to go before they reach Manchester City and Liverpool but fully expects Arsenal to be strong contenders for Champions League football with the squad they are putting together this off-season.
So far this summer they have acquired the £34m signing of Fabio Vieira as well as adding goalkeeper Matt Turner and young Brazilian upstart Marquinhos to their ranks.
Gabriel Jesus’ £45m arrival from Manchester City also seems imminent and Laurens believes that Mikel Arteta’s side will be challenging to be the best of the rest next season.
When asked on the ESPN FC show would Arsenal challenge for a Champions League spot next season he said:
Will Arsenal still spend big on a winger this summer?
(0:11) “ I think so and I think Gabriel Jesus is not the end of their transfer window. I think there will be more.
“Challenging for Champions League places of course. They were challenging last season with a squad that was not as good as the one they are building now for this season.
“Challenging City and Liverpool no but challenging to finish third or fourth, definitely.
“I think what they are doing is very very interesting, certainly going the right way but you have to say City and Liverpool are still ahead but for the others, I think it will be a level playing field for sure.”
TIF Thoughts on Arsenal…
Should Arsenal be making top four this season?
It would be naive for any Gooner to think that their club was going to challenge for the Premier League title but the reality is not many are expecting them to such is the pace set by Manchester City and Liverpool in recent years.
However, a return to Champions League football would be huge for the north Londoners.
They narrowly missed out on securing a seat at Europe’s top table for the first time since the 2016/17 season last term but are now without a top-four finish in six seasons.
Nonetheless, that will be the aim for Arteta and his squad and it could entice the likes of Bukayo Saka to remain at the Emirates Stadium with Harry Symeou recently revealing that their recent business has been reviewed positively by the starlet’s representatives.