These are happy moments at Arsenal especially with the north London club starting the new season brilliantly winning the maximum three points from their two games so far.
The good news was even expanded when Josh Kroenke revealed that he instructed Arsenal’s transfer team to aggressively pursue players ofChampions League quality over the summer and intends to take a similar approach in January.
The Gunners broke their transfer record to bring in £72million man Nicolas Pepe, while also signed David Luiz, Kieran Tierney, Gabriel Martinelli, William Saliba and brought Dani Ceballos in on loan from Real Madrid.
The club’s failure to qualify for the Champions League was expected to severely hamper their spending power and ability to attract top players, but Kroenke says the club never held that view.
‘We knew we wouldn’t have Champions League football and that’s what those type of talents are after,’ explained Kroenke in an extensive interview with BBC Sport. ‘My main message to Vinai (Venkatesham, managing director) and Raul Sanllehi, head of football) coming back from Baku on the plane and then throughout meetings all day the following day with them and Unai Emery, was: “Let’s be aggressive and find out what’s possible”.
‘These guys went out into the market place and – through their contacts and our fantastic new team behind the scenes – were able to find some talented players who are really excited about playing for Arsenal Football Club. ‘I think we had a very strong summer. We addressed certain areas on the pitch for this season and in the years ahead. We had certain age profiles that we were after. Without Champions League football we weren’t exactly sure, but I encouraged our football operations department to be aggressive and when Arsenal Football Club knocks on a player’s door it’s a different knock.’