Paul Merson stunned Arsenal didn't target Danny Ings
Paul Merson has told Sky Sports that he cannot understand why Arsenal did not target Danny Ings during the summer, insisting that the striker is more than good enough to play for the Gunners.
Mikel Arteta’s men have come in for a lot of criticism at the start of this campaign. They have lost both of their opening two games in the Premier League.
As Merson notes, a defeat to this Chelsea side is, unfortunately, understandable. However, the result compounded the frustration that stemmed from their loss to Brentford on the opening night.
And of course, the atmosphere was already tense after an underwhelming window.
Arsenal fans hoping for an overhaul of the squad have been left disappointed.
The club have certainly made signings. But they have desperately struggled to offload some of their fringe players. And that appears to have hampered their ability to make further additions.
Merson has been heavily critical of the recruitment. And he has expressed his dismay that they did not target someone like Ings.
“Where is the recruitment, where are the people behind the scenes, what work are they doing? Every single player on Chelsea’s bench on Sunday – every single player – would have been on the pitch if they played for Arsenal’s first team,” he told Sky Sports.
“Why is someone like Danny Ings not playing for Arsenal? You cannot tell me he’s not good enough. Why are Aston Villa getting players like Ings, Emiliano Buendia instead of Arsenal? Who is making these decisions? Surely these players would have been on Arsenal’s radar.”
Danny Ings could have been an inspired addition for Arsenal
Aston Villa are already being vindicated for paying £25 million to take Ings from Southampton.
He has scored in both of his two Premier League appearances for the Villans. The second was an outrageous volley against Newcastle at the weekend.
You can understand why some were wary about meeting Ings’s asking price. His deal on the south coast was set to expire next summer.
And Arsenal have failed to sell any of their attacking players. So finding space for Ings would have been tricky.
Having said that, Ings has been outstanding in the last few years. And he joins Villa with a point to prove with Dean Smith’s men setting their sights high up the table.
Arsenal need that hunger. So you can see why Merson is perplexed that they seemingly did not make a move for the 29-year-old.