Mikel Arteta was asked in March of this year how close he was to achieving his ideal Arsenal line-up. The Spaniard's response was revealing.
"Very far. Very, very far," he said. "There's still a lot to improve, a lot of quality to add.
"(We need to be) much more efficient in decision-making, much quicker to open situations up. We need more control of games, more defensive actions in the opponent's half, fewer giveaways, more clean sheets. There's a lot to do, more goals, more creativity."
The as-of-yet unattainable success markers mentioned by Arteta in that press conference are things he admits he believes can be attained with one significant change to Arsenal's setup.
So far, the Spaniard has fielded his team in a 4-2-3-1 or 3-4-3 formation, but he has stated that he does not want to have to do so in the long run.
“For me the way we occupy space and who is going to move in there is more important than the formation," he told DAZN in December.
“And from there we have some very similar players that are not used to play in those positions so we have to keep changing the formation a little bit.
“We want to move to a 4-3-3"
However, Arsenal's activity in the transfer window thus far suggests that he is attempting to address this issue.
They came close to signing the Frenchman last summer but were thwarted by Lyon's asking price, and they may try again this time around with Lyon's asking price having dropped significantly.