Arsenal need to be spending “big money” on another No.10, says Ray Parlour, with Mikel Arteta considered to be in need of greater creativity and goal threat from those that line up behind proven strikers.
The Gunners have continued to lean heavily on the likes of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette when it comes to inspiration in the final third of the field.
Sizeable investment has been made behind Gabonese and French frontmen, with Nicolas Pepe a £72 million ($91m) club-record signing and Mesut Ozil a World Cup winner.
It is, however, not difficult to argue that containing Aubameyang and Lacazette makes Arsenal considerably more toothless.
Parlour considers that to be the case and believes Arteta needs to address those issues when the next transfer window swings open.
He told talkSPORT: "The goals are not really spread around the team are they with Arsenal?
"You get Lacazette who can chip in with a few, Ozil probably doesn’t score enough for the position he plays.
"The midfield are very much more defensive minded, [Granit] Xhaka is not going to score you goals, [Lucas] Torreira’s not going to score you goals, they’ve lost [Aaron] Ramsey, who was the goalscorer from midfield.
"So, I look at an attacking midfielder who’s probably going to score you 10 goals a season, but you’re talking big money then, so spend."
Arsenal’s pursuit of more firepower could intensify over the coming weeks if talismanic captain Aubameyang decides to try his luck elsewhere, with the 30-year-old approaching the final 12 months of his current contract.
Parlour hopes a deal can still be done to keep a prolific presence in north London, but concedes serious ambition and improvement on the field is going to be required in order to convince a prized asset to stay put.
The former Gunners midfielder said: "I think they’ve got to try and keep most of their top talent, I’m talking about Aubameyang and people like that, if they’re going to have any chance of trying to get into the Champions League.
"I think a lot of it will be down to the last nine games of this season, I think they’ve still got a glimmer of hope that you never know which teams that are above them are going to come back and hit the ground running.
"If they [Arsenal] can come back and hit the ground running and get a good start to the season, obviously the Man City game is going to be very important, if they can get anything out of that game that will give them a lot of confidence going forward.
"Champions League football is so important for a lot of players these days so Aubameyang, if they can squeeze in there, might sign a new contract, I don’t know.
"If they don’t, then he might be on his way and suddenly you’ve got to replace a striker who scores all your goals."