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Arsenal need to sign ‘at least’ five new players this summer with ‘quality and personality’, says Emmanuel Petit


Emmanuel Petit says Arsenal need a number of new signings this summer (Pictures: Getty)

Arsenal need to make ‘at least’ five new signings this summer and bring in players with ‘quality and personality’, according to former Gunners midfielder Emmanuel Petit.

Mikel Arteta’s side finished just eighth in the Premier League last season, six points outside of the top four places and 25 points adrift of champions Manchester City.

Petit, who helped Arsenal complete a Premier League and FA Cup double in 1998, has bemoaned his former club’s demise and says an overhaul of the squad is needed this summer.

‘If Arsenal want to be competitive again, they need at least five players with both talent and character,’ Petit told Metro.co.uk.

‘The first thing they need is a proper goalscorer. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was a proper goalscorer but he had a terrible time this season. They need wingers too.

‘Arsenal always used to have very good wingers, who could go one-on-one out wide, who could bring speed to the attack, but there are so many positions at Arsenal where they need top players.

‘I still believe they have very interesting young players but they need players around them to show them the way because it shouldn’t be their responsibility to take care of the team.

Mikel Arteta’s side struggled last season, finishing eighth in the Premier League (Picture: Getty)

‘When you look at young players like Mason Mount and Jack Grealish, they’re fantastic because, apart from their quality, they show character and desire, they want to prove they are one of the best players in their position.

‘This is exactly what I want to see at Arsenal, and I see that in Saka, and sometimes in Smith Rowe.

‘But what I want from Arsenal in the transfer market is quality and, more importantly, leadership and personality.

‘We want character at Arsenal, players who hate to lose, players who scream in the dressing room when they lose, players who are ready to fight with team-mates when they lose. This is exactly what is missing at Arsenal.’

Petit is not sure what to expect from Arsenal next season until seeing their summer transfer activity but insists the Gunners should always be looking to challenge for the Premier League.

England defender Ben White has emerged as one of Arsenal’s top targets (Picture: Getty)

The Paddy Power ambassador added: ‘How will Arsenal get on next season? It depends on the transfer market and the team they want to build.

‘When you are at Arsenal, you should be competing for the Premier League title, for every single piece of silverware, including the Champions League. They don’t talk about the Champions League or the Premier League title any more.

‘Arsenal need to get back to being a real threat. I’m quite tired and disappointed because they’ve bought some talented players, but they don’t compete on the pitch, they don’t show their quality.

‘Something has to be changed at the club in terms of ambition and vision. When you look at the European Championship, the teams that reached the final play as a team with a lot of smiles and confidence. For me, that’s very important.

‘All those superstar teams with lots of top players with big egos, that’s not working any more in football.

‘The teams that have won so many major trophies over the last few years, it’s based on unity in the team. Look at Manchester City and the way they play together

‘It’s not a surprise that they win silverware every single season because you cannot compete if you don’t play as a unit, as a team.

‘Arsenal need to understand this and come back, because otherwise they will drop and drop down the table.’

Emmanuel Petit is a EURO 2020 ambassador for Paddy Power, who is encouraging punters to change bookmaker as part of its ‘Switch for Better’ campaign. Switching to Paddy will secure free £5 Bet Builders on selected games throughout the tournament. For more details, visit the Paddy Power website.

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