Arsenal’s best and worst signings of the decade: Wenger and Emery’s top buys and big flops

Arsenal have made some questionable signings during the last 10 years but have also broken their transfer record on several occasions. Arsene Wenger was often criticised for his transfer dealings, and how much input Unai Emery had during his time at the club is not known. Express Sport have picked 10 of the best and worst signings the Gunners made in the 2010s.

Arsenal’s best signings of the decade

Laurent Koscielny 2010-2019

£8.5m from Lorient, 353 appearances, 17 goals

In a period where Arsenal’s defence was often under scrutiny, Koscielny was regularly the man holding it together.

Going on to make over 350 appearances for the club, the £8.5m Arsenal paid for the Frenchman was an absolute steal.

Koscielny left in acrimonious circumstances in the summer but that should not mask the fact that he was one of the better signings in the second half of Wenger’s reign at the club.

Santi Cazorla 2012-2018

£15m from Malaga, 180 appearances, 29 goals

Cazorla arrived at Arsenal as an attacking wide player but turned out to be one of the league’s best central midfielders during his best years at the club.

His career with the Gunners was cruelly cut short by a horrendous Achilles injury that doctors thought may prevent him from even walking again.

But, at 35, he is starring in La Liga with Villarreal and has earned his place back in the Spain side, and would still be the best player in the Arsenal midfield.

The Gunners would be even further down the table than they are now if it wasn’t for the Gabon star’s goals.

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They cannot afford to let him leave in January and pinning him down to a longer contract must be one of Mikel Arteta’s priorities.

Gabriel Martinelli 2019-present

£6m from Ituano, 17 appearances, 8 goals

Martinelli is still raw at 18 years of age but he has already shown he has a promising future.

The young Brazilian is Arsenal’s second top scorer so far this season and did particularly well during the early stages of the Europa League.

He is quick, good in the air and a fine finisher, so is a potential long-term successor to Aubameyang – £6m is an absolute bargain.

Arsenal’s worst signings of the decade

Park Chu Young 2011-2014

Initial £3m from Monaco, 7 appearances, 1 goal

When Park joined Arsenal, Wenger said: “He will add true quality to our attacking forces and will be a valuable addition to the squad.”

But the South Korean made just seven appearances during his time at the club, which also included two loan spells away at Celta Vigo and Watford.

Denis Suarez 2019

Loan from Barcelona, 6 appearances, 0 goals

With Arsenal fans demanding a signing or two to help them get over the line for Champions League qualification, Emery finally got a loan deal completed for Suarez in January 2019.

He had worked with the player before, so the fans were optimistic.

But Suarez failed to make a start for Arsenal, with his short time at the club riddled by injuries and the Gunners ended up missing out on the Premier League top four.

David Luiz 2019-present

£8m from Chelsea, 18 appearances, 2 goals

Arsenal had all summer to find a central defender better than what they had and ended up signing David Luiz from London rivals Chelsea.

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The £8m fee may have looked like a good deal to some but Luiz has been nothing short of a disaster so far.

Arsenal have won two away games in the Premier League so far this season and Luiz has not played in either of them.


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