Crystal Palace beat Tottenham Hotspur in pictures
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Arsenal director Edu would have been watching Crystal Palace’s win over Tottenham on Saturday with envy despite splashing over £150million on new players during the summer. The Gunners were the Premier League’s biggest spenders throughout the window but have failed to deliver on the financial backing provided by the Kroenke family thus far.
Mikel Arteta’s side currently occupy 16th place in the Premier League table after claiming their first win against Norwich City on Saturday.
Arsenal were beaten by Brentford, Chelsea and Manchester City without scoring a single goal prior to their narrow 1-0 victory over the Canaries at the Emirates Stadium.
The club’s lack of bite in attack played a significant role in their failure to qualify for Europe last season, with a return to the Premier League’s upper reaches looking unlikely at this early stage of the new campaign.
Although the Gunners managed to sign Martin Odegaard, Albert Sambi Lokonga, Nuno Tavares, Aaron Ramsdale, Takehiro Tomiyasu and Ben White during the summer, they were unable to bolster their ranks with the addition of a new striker.
It was suggested that former Chelsea marksman Tammy Abraham was being seriously courted by Arsenal before he eventually decided to join Roma on a permanent basis.
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The north London heavyweights were also heavily linked with a move for Odsonne Edouard, who went on to join Palace from Celtic in a last-gasp deadline-day switch.
The Frenchman made a name for himself as a prolific operator during his time in Scotland and resumed normal service upon being introduced for his Premier League debut against Spurs.
He replaced Christian Benteke with just six minutes remaining and wasted no time at all in opening his account with an exquisite two-touch finish.
Edouard went on to add his second and Palace’s third of the afternoon in stoppage time to cap off a smooth move from the Eagles and rubber-stamp the result.
The 23-year-old, who became the first Premier League player to score a brace on his debut since Sergio Aguero for Manchester City back in 2011, proved exactly why Arsenal should have pushed relentlessly for his signature with his impressive cameo.
He showed that he is not afraid of bringing the fight when required to step up against top-class opposition, with the Gunners lacking determination on all fronts as of late.
Edouard’s arrival in north London would also have provided Arsenal with a long-term solution at the top of the pitch for many seasons to come.
Alexandre Lacazette will be out of contract at the end of the campaign and is not expected to sign a new deal with the club, while Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will be in the same boat next year.
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Meanwhile, Arsenal simply cannot rely on the inexperienced trio of Gabriel Martinelli, Eddie Nketiah and Folarin Balogun to lead the line if they are serious about making their way back up the Premier League table.
It seems as though Edouard’s performance against Spurs was a clear indication of what might have been for Arsenal if they had addressed their striking dilemma before last month’s all-important transfer deadline.
The Gunners will be forced to make do with their current options until at least January, at which point a top-half finish could be nothing more than a pipe dream if their form cannot be rescued.
For all the money spent by the club over the summer, they failed to solve what is perhaps their biggest problem and it remains to be seen whether Edu’s decision to avoid landing Edouard will come back to haunt them at the end of the campaign.
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