Leicester City 0 Arsenal 0

Arsenal produced a performance of potential and substance in their 0-0 draw at Leicester City, which following their season opening 4-3 reverse at the hands of Liverpool, should be seen as a point won at the home of the Premier League Champions. The home side were set up to prevent the Gunners from winning as they did on their last two meetings in the Premier League and any thoughts of Arsenal romping to another 5-2 victory were soon put in check, with Arsenal’s Petr Cech also on hand to deny a late Riyad Mahrez chance. The point may have got the Gunners on the board, but the travelling Arsenal fans expressed their frustration with Arsene Wenger’s perceived transfer inactivity, and urging him to spend some money.

Following the final whistle, the Gunners boss was adamant that he was ready to spend, and – contrary to his form up until now, that there would be no limit on his buying power, but he will not get the cheque book out just to appease the media.

“ Why do you say I’m reluctant, I don’t understand that?, Wenger quizzed his inquisitor.

“ If I buy you tomorrow for £45m that means I’ve bought you for £45m, have I done well? Yes, if I listen to you, I will have done well because I spent the money. That is not a quality, buying a top player, that is different – and we are ready to do that. I ( would ) spend £300m if I find the player and if I have the £300m.

“ Not to forget as well that we are a club who has 600 employees who we need to have a responsible attitude for as well. It’s a bit surprising that you come out of football games and you don’t speak about football, you have to speak about money. I believe that you have to respect the players who play, the performance that has been done today by those teams and if you find players who can strengthen our team, then we are not reluctant to spend the money,” said Wenger.

The match itself may not have been what Wenger would have liked, although an Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain run and shot which flashed past Kasper Schmeichel’s upright gave the Gunners early hope. A Santi Cazorla free kick also had to be dealt with by the Leicester ‘keeper and up front, Alexis Sanchez was as always a willing competitor.

There was more of a defensive solidity about the Gunners, with Laurent Koscielny back to impart his wisdom on 21 year old Rob Holding who will have been encouraged with his part in keeping a clean sheet. Jamie Vardy struck high from close in, and substitute Mesut Ozil reminded us of his urgency as he transformed the game straight from his introduction. The German went close but again Schmeichel wasn’t to be beaten.

Ahmed Musa gave Hector Bellerin a race all afternoon and could have been awarded a penalty when the two came together,  but referee Mark Clattenberg ruled play on. Earlier in another Fox’ s penalty appeal, Danny Drinkwatwer was denied by a last ditch Koscileny interception, as both sides were eventually forced to settle on the draw.

Wenger was full of praise for Holding’s performance in only his second Premier League game, and predicted a bright club and country future for his young defender.

Wenger said, “ I believe he had an outstanding performance for a young boy who has never played in the Premier League and played against top strikers today. So I can only reiterate that I am happy to speak about him because it’s good for English football that a young boy gets a chance in a big club in England and shows that he will be a quality player.”

Irked by the continual lack of spending line of questioning, Wenger remained calm, but had a subtle dig at the assembled media.

“ You should be happy, he’s English, he’s 20 years old, but I am sorry, he did not cost £55m so he cannot be good and that is for me what is most disappointing for me. You don’t speak about the performances of the players anymore, you just speak about money.Anything else than football. I believe that it’s not right.”

What would be right is for Wenger to get that twenty plus goal a season striker and also reinforce his central defence and that would be the minimum if the Gunners are to fire on all fronts this season. A failure to address those issues may result in Wenger not being able to entirely savour and enjoy his 20th year at Arsenal.