Former Tottenham midfielder Jamie Redknapp doesn’t expect Arsenal securing a return to the UEFA Champions League until manager Arsene Wenger signs a top quality defensive midfielder.

Top-four hopes

Arsenal managed to create some top-four challenge hopes earlier in the month after they were 5-1 winners against Merseyside outfit Everton at The Emirates Stadium.

Winter duo of Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Pierre-Emerick Aubamenyang impressed in the team’s resounding win over the Toffees in the League.

However, Spurs were 1-0 winners against Wenger’s team in the derby encounter at Wembley Stadium on Saturday following Harry Kane’s winner.

Defensive midfielder needed

The Gunners haven’t had a natural defensive midfielder in their squad since Brazilian Gilberto Silva and Frenchman Patrick Vieira dominated the midfield.

Former Spurs midfielder Redknapp doesn’t expect the Gunners competing for a Champions League spot finish again until Arsene Wenger signs a proven player in the defensive midfield position.

Arsenal acquired Granit Xhaka in a £33million deal from Borussia Monchengladbach in the summer of 2016.

Struggling Xhaka

The Switzerland international has struggled to make a positive impact at the club and has constantly been criticised heavily for his poor disciplinary figure.

The Gunners are seven points adrift fourth-placed Spurs with 11 matches to go in the 2017-18 League season.

Arsenal will play Manchester City in the Carabao Cup final at Wembley Stadium later in the month.

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