By Graham McNorthbank
Arsenal's new season kicks off in earnest in 10 days time and while I'm possibly one of the most optimistic Gooners I know, even I'm questioning what is being done to strengthen the team.
Last season we sold Emmanuel Adebayor and failed to replace him, despite a very healthy fee for the Togolese hitman. This summer, up front, we've brought in Marouane Chamakh on a free transfer and sold Eduardo. In my reckoning that still means we're one striker down and I shouldn't need to remind and Addicts that despite lots of goals last season, we were lacking in firepower where it mattered because of injuries.
In midfield there's an argument that we need a defensive minded player to provide competition - and cover - for Alex Song. I'm one of the few people who seems to rate Denilson, but he's not the same kind of player as Song and therefore he's not the man in my mind to pressurise him for a place in the starting 11.
But I've been hugely impressed by Emmanuel Frimpong since his return from injury last season and his showing in pre-season has hinted that he could be the player to cover for Song. That's not to say we should not be signing a proven DM, but history sadly tells me that isn't going to happen.
When it comes to goalkeepers, I'm torn. I don't think either Manuel Almunia or Lukasz Fabianski were good enough to call themselves Arsenal players last season. But if Mark Schwarzer is the answer, I'd rather stick with what we've got.
Schwarzer conceded four goals against Arsenal on the last day of the 2009/10 season. He didn't impress me. Surely if we're going to be signing a new keeper he should be one of the best. The argument that we should get anyone in that's too good or too young in case we upset Wojciech Szczesny is frankly ludicrous.
This is the Arsenal and we should be signing the best players possible. It was only a couple of years ago that Szczesny broke both his arms lifting weights. We should go for the best goalkeeper available and if the young Pole isn't good enought to dislodge him in time, then he's obviously not good enough full stop. If he is, then it's a win win situation.
And then there's our defence. Or more to the point our centre of defence. Sol Campbell, Philippe Senderos, Mikael Silvestre and William Gallas have all left the club. In has come Laurent Koscielny. That leaves us three central defenders short. THREE! And let's bear in mind that Koscielny is untried and therefore unproven in the Premier League.
And before anyone harps on about the return of Johan Djourou, I'm not buying the Arsene Wenger line that it's like having a new signing. It's not. It's like having an injury prone player temporarily back.
Therefore I'm hoping, nay praying, that Le Gaffer's priority in the 10 days before kick off - and the subsequent fortnight before the transfer window slams shut - that central defence is his priority. Sort out the heart of our defence and we'll stop shipping as many goals. Sign a decent keeper and we may even be title contenders.
But if you had to choose one position to strengthen before the transfer window closes, who would it be? Click on the read more link below to access our poll and vote now.