Five players Arsenal could sign in January after Arteta’s damning admission

Mikel Arteta has admitted that Arsenal are "a long way" off where they need to be following their start to the season.

The Spaniard is in his first full campaign as manager and has overseen some impressive performances, most notably their win at Manchester United.

But four defeats in their opening eight league games means they are someway off the pace.

Arteta has reiterated that the Gunners need to understand the pathway back to the top but acknowledges the need to produce results. 

"We're a long way, I'm afraid. It's part of a process," he told the club's official website.

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"The results have to be immediate, and the challenge we have with the club we are representing is that we have to win as quickly as possible every game in every competition. 

"So far we have played 14 games in all competitions this season, we won 10 and lost four and the four of them have been in the Premier League, so it is a little bit imbalanced."

Arteta was allowed to bring in several new faces in the summer, but there is still a notable gulf in class between them and the likes of Liverpool and Manchester City.

With that in mind, we take a look at five players whom Arsenal could pursue in January.

Houssem Aouar

The Lyon midfielder was the one who got away in the summer.

Aouar played a starring role as Lyon impressed in the Champions League and attracted plenty of attention.

Arteta is keen to add a forward thinking midfielder having signed the highly energetic Thomas Partey from Atletico Madrid.

Aouar is likely to command a hefty fee with Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas far from an easy man to negotiate with.

But signing the 22-year-old would certainly give Arsenal some added creativity and flair in the final third.

Jack Grealish

Talking of creativity and flair, there are few better that encompass that more than the Aston Villa man.

Not that Grealish was auditioning, but taking the Gunners apart in a 3-0 win for his side recently will only have added to his desirability.

The 25-year-old, who is finally getting the England recognition he deserves, has been Villa's standout player for several years now.

Former Gunner Gilberto Silva recently gave him a glowing review when he said: "Grealish, amazing. It seems like he could be a player that Arsenal missed.

"With his ability, he was one of the guys in the middle who can play beautiful football."

Trying to sign the player midway through season will be challenging however, especially with Villa going so well as of late.

Jerome Boateng

The Bayern Munich defender is set to leave the Allianz Arena after a decade this summer with his contract winding down.

But that may allow the Gunners to seal a cut price deal in an effort to steal a march on the competition.

Boateng was previously linked with the north London outfit and is free to begin negotiating with other clubs in the New Year.

Arsenal new boy William Saliba has not slotted in like many expected leaving Arteta sightly light at the back.

Boateng has a wealth of experience and a CV to match making him a worthwhile addition, on and off the pitch.

Dominic Szoboszlai

The young Hungarian is one of the most sought after midfielders in Europe.

His performances with Red Bull Salzburg have attracted plenty of attention and he was able to showcase his talents on the Champions League stage last term.

Szoboszlai' agent. Matyas Esterhaz, recently denied rumours of an agreement with RB Leipzig meaning the door remains open for Arsenal.

"Dominik Szoboszlai has no agreement with Leipzig or any other club, except of course his current club Red Bull Salzburg," he told Hungarian outlet Index.

He could also be a far cheaper alternative to some of the club's other targets with Salzburg reportedly seeking around £18m.

Brenner

The young Brazilian is another player thought to be on Arsenal's radar and could be available on the cheap.

Brenner has scored 17 times in 27 outings for Sao Paulo so far this term and could help add more firepower to the Gunners attack.

Alexandre Lacazette vand Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang have both struggled for goals as of late while Eddie Nketiah is still developing.

But the success of Gabriel Martinelli has led Arsenal to consider more recruits from South America.

Sao Paulo had valued Brenner at £45m, but as a result of the coronavirus pandemic could now accept as little as half that.

Where will Arsenal finish this season? Have your say here.

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