Arsenal FC raised a lot of eyebrows this summer with their spending spree. The reason is Arsenal barely ever go all out for a player as their business model allows for very little risk in the transfer market. But in some instances they have gone the extra mile to acquire a player. In this article, we will look at the five most expensive signings made by Arsenal.
#5 Thomas Partey – £45m
For long Arsenal had failed to invest in quality defensive midfielders until they bid for Partey. Under Simeone, Partey was playing the best football of his life. In the summer of 2020, Partey became one of the most expensive signings made by Arsenal and nobody really complained about the transfer fee.
Nobody expected Partey to adapt seamlessly to the Premier League. But even after a full season, Partey is yet to perform consistently at the highest level. Granted, he has struggled with injuries but he could be soon out of favor with Lokonga and Xhaka waiting on the wings.
#4 Alexandre Lacazette – £47.7m
Lacazette became Arsenal’s club record signing in the summer of 2017. The French striker was Lyon’s best player during his spell at the club and the expectations were high at Emirates. Despite being a regular starter, Lacazette has not impressed everybody during his five year reign. He has scored only 69 goals so far despite making 184 appearances.
Lacazette might be inconsistent but Arteta has still backed him to come good in the longer run. But his contract his expiring in the summer and looking at his age, Arsenal will be tempted to sell him.
#3 Ben White – £52.65m
White was signed from Brighton in the summer of 2021 and is now an integral part of Arsenal’s defense. White offers Arsenal a lot of quality while passing out from the back. He was outstanding for Brighton during the 20/21 season and even earned a call-up to the national squad.
White has seamlessly fitted into Arteta’s setup and was the main reason for Arsenal’s outstanding defensive record in October and November. He still has to work on 1v1 defending and is sometimes physically bullied by bigger center-forwards. However, White is just 23 and his peak years are still far away.
#2 Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang – £57.38m
Aubameyang signed from Dortmund during January 2018 after Sanchez was sold to Manchester United. He scored 10 goals in his first season and impressed everyone with his pace and skills. Aubameyang scored 22 goals in his next two Premier League seasons and won the Golden Boot in 18/19. He captained Arsenal to victory in the 2020 FA Cup, scoring a brace in the final.
However, he came in for a lot of criticism during the 20/21 season and scored just 10 goals in the league. Aubameyang’s image has taken a further hit recently after Arsenal sacked him as captain due to a disciplinary breach.
#1 Nicolas Pepe – £72m
Topping the list of most expensive signings made by Arsenal is Nicolas Pepe. The Ivory Coast winger had a breakthrough season in 18/19, scoring 22 goals for Lille. He also impressed everyone with his dribbling skills and pace. But the Premier League is a different beast altogether as he struggled to go past players and had to adjust his game.
Pepe scored just five Premier League goals in his first season and registered 10 goals last season. He is yet to open his account this season as Arteta has preferred academy products Saka and Emile Smith-Rowe over him. Hence, there is a good chance of him moving to another club during the summer.