One swallow doesn't make a summer! Why Arsenal have to win something next year

Arsenal Celebrate 2013

The Gunners' FA Cup win needs a swift successor if the club are to truly reemerge as a footballing force.

It's not always the case that the hardest trophy to win is the very first. It is often the one AFTER that first piece of silverware.

Arsenal's FA Cup final win last weekend almost felt like the club's first ever trophy, after nine years consisting of some near misses and quite a few more attempts that sailed wide of the mark, there was understandable relief and joy. You wouldn't have found bigger celebrations if Hull City, without a cup in their entire history, had secured the win.

Theo Walcott was just one of the Gunners camp that saw the win as a sign Arsenal were on the cusp of great things. "This is definitely the stepping stone that’s going to build us into an absolutely dominant Arsenal team," the England winger said.

Ironically, the Gunners weren't at their best over the course of their FA Cup run. Four home ties meant they never had to leave London, and a straight forward win over a poor Spurs side in the third round was followed by tight wins over Liverpool and Everton, and even closer victories over Wigan and Hull.

Those games will go down as mere footnotes to what ended up a trophy winning season, and of course, that is a reason for celebration, but they should also serve as reminder to those expecting Arsenal to instantly jump up a level or two.

Walcott's words "absolute dominance" will be very difficult in a day and age when Manchester City and Chelsea will continue to outmuscle the Gunners in the long run. If a trophy doesn't come next year then this will be somewhat of a false dawn, and a couple of years without silverware will almost instantly signal a return to the anxiety that was present in the nine years the club just experienced without a title.

With Manchester City somewhat hamstrung for one season when it comes to recruiting top players, Arsenal have to pursue an aggressive transfer policy over the summer. It may be the only time that one of, and in fact their most affluent rival is unable to match their spending power.

Wenger should be prepared to invest £100 million if the players are anywhere near available, to reinforce striker, defensive midfield, and various defensive positions. If he fails to do that the Gunners may well fail to kick on from this season. One world class signing isn't enough, especially considering Sagna is as good as gone.

And the Arsenal boss should be prepared to give the League Cup a real go too next season, as a win there will actually begin to turn the illusion of that winning mentality into a reality.

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