Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has admitted the Gunners are ‘very short’ on squad depth following Wednesday night’s Carabao Cup exit at the hands of Brighton.
Arteta opted to rest most of his usual starters that have taken Arsenal to the top of the Premier League. Things looked to be going okay when Eddie Nketiah opened the scoring early, but then Brighton scored three times without replay to progress to the next round.
Throughout the second half, Arteta brought on five players who had started in the league victory over Chelsea only a few days earlier.
“That’s the squad that we have and we have to try to utilise the squad in the best possible way,” the Arsenal boss reflected after the game when asked if there is a need to strengthen in January.
“We know where we are and we knew the moment we had certain injuries that the squad is already very, very short,” he added.
Arteta and technical director Edu both stated during the summer that there is a lot to do on the ongoing rebuild, but no more signings were actually made after that point.
The Gunners were interested in signing a central midfielder, for example, with Youri Tielemans, who stayed at Leicester, and Lucas Paqueta, who went to West Ham.
Arsenal had also been chasing Bruno Guimaraes before the Brazilian chose Newcastle last January.
The concern for Arsenal fans looking ahead to the second half of the season after the World Cup is whether the squad will have the depth to continue competing with the likes of Manchester City, Chelsea, Manchester United and others in both the title race and hunt for a top four place.