Three games, three defeats, nine goals conceded, none scored.

Needless to say, no Arsenal fans enjoyed the start to their new Premier League campaign. The pressure mounted heavily on manager Mikel Arteta, as the North London outfit followed up their shocking 2-0 opening day defeat to newcomers Brentford with 2-0 and 5-0 losses against Chelsea and Manchester City, respectively.

The Gunners were the biggest spenders of the window with a transfer outlay of €165 million. However, none of Arsenal’s summer recruitments were high-profile signings.

While big 6 rivals added proven stars like Jack Grealish, Cristiano Ronaldo, Romelu Lukaku, and Raphael Varane real money online casinos, Arsenal vested their trust in Ben White, Martin Odegard, Aaron Ramsdale, Takehiro Tomiyasu, Albert Sambi Lokonga, and Nuno Tavares.

Of course, each of these players excelled in particular underlying metrics the club had looked for, but they did not come with the star power that would seemingly bridge the gap between Arsenal and their big six peers immediately.

Last season, Arsenal finished 8th on the table and got eliminated from the Europa League semifinals. As a result, they failed to qualify for Europe for the first time in 25 years.

Pundits criticized Arsenal for spending their money on a group of ‘’unproven’’ players rather than bringing in one or two big guns. But, Arteta insisted the club went for practicality instead of flair. Each of these players has the necessary attributes he seeks for implementing his long-term vision at the club.

Due to covid and injuries, Arsenal could not field their new-look team in the first three games of the season. The critics nonetheless, refused to accept that it justifies Arsenal’s poor showing in the first three PL outings.

To be honest, Arsenal appeared totally disorganized in those matches. Oppositions bullied them as Arteta helplessly watched on from the sidelines. Ben White had a shaky debut against Brentford before missing the next two games contracting covid. Even though Lokonga and Tavares looked promising, they did not seem ready yet for regular first team action.

Arteta pleaded for patience from the fans, but the Spaniard knew time was running out swiftly for him to remedy the situation.

A much welcome international break gave Arsenal a breathing space to reorganize and get back their missing players. A full-strength Arsenal squad barring Granit Xhaka, who was suspended for picking up a red against Manchester City, was available for selection in the matchday 4 tie with Norwich.

Arsenal had a comfortable 1-0 victory as Pierre Emerick Aubameyang scored the deciding goal of the match. Arsenal were dominant through and through. But, poor attacking third play deprived them of a victory by a larger margin.

A Martin Odegaard freekick goal gave Arsenal a 1-0 victory over Burnley at Turf Moore the next week. A midweek League Cup victory over AFC Wimbledon gave them a much-needed boost ahead of the North London Derby.

Arsenal produced their finest display in seasons against their arch-rivals the next week to race to a 3-0 lead within the first half.  They could not sustain the intensity in the second half, but did enough to seal a 3-1 victory against Tottenham at home.

Based on the small sample size we can consider following the Manchester City game, it is undeniable that new recruitments have improved Arsenal substantially. White has produced three excellent performances after returning from covid. His ball distribution abilities and aggressive tackling have improved Arsenal both offensively and defensively.

Gabriel Magalhaes, who missed the first three games recovering from injury, has proved to be a solid rock at the back. He has allowed White to operate with more freedom by providing sufficient defensive cover.

Kieran Tierney has been one of the standout performers at Arsenal ever since he arrived at the club The club has suffered in the past, however, because of his recurrent injuries and Arsenal’s lack of backup left-backs. Arsenal addressed that issue by bringing in Nuno Tavares, who has appeared to be an incredible addition in the patches of minutes he played so far.

Takehiro Tomiyasu has been a revelation at right-back. Since his debut against Burnley, the Japan international did not let any player dribble past him, and he already faced one of the best wingers in the league in Heung-Min Son.

With Granit Xhaka picking up a long term injury, Sambi Lokonga will be playing regularly at the heart of Arsenal’s midfield. He will be partnering up with Thomas Partey, who possesses outstanding passing and pressing qualities that any modern manager would seek in his midfield. Lokonga is still inexperienced, but he has shown good buildup qualities. If he can improve the defensive element to his game, he can form a formidable midfield pairing with Partey.

In Odegaard and Emil Smith Rowe, Arsenal have two excellent creative outlets who can attack the half-spaces and deliver the ball beyond the lines. In doing so, they can bring the best out of Aubameyang, Nicolas Pepe, and Bukayo Saka.

Bernd Leno has been an excellent keeper for Arsenal, but he had one major flaw to his game; poor distribution skills. The German was never comfortable with his feet, so Arteta went into the market to sign a keeper who could play an Ederson-like role.

Many questions were asked regarding Ramsdale’s 24-million-pound fee. But, the Englishman has made a sizable improvement in Arsenal’s build-up play from the back. He has also shown great aerial sense and shot-stopping ability, which made him an immediate fan favourite.

Arsenal have an exciting group of players that can help them re-establish themselves as Premier League title contenders. That said, is Mikel Arteta the right person to take them forward? Recent form indicates he is slowly materializing his long-term vision at the club, but we have to wait a bit longer to find out for sure.