Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has claimed that Arsenal are better off without Robin van Persie after insisting that the side have found an extra resolve after the striker left.
Van Persie's departure from the Gunners last summer for Manchester United appeared to spell doom for the club, with the hitman having often been the game changer in their fight for a top four finish.
But his replacements, Olivier Giroud and Lukas Podolski, have put in decent performances since his absence alongside a developing Theo Walcott.
And Chamberlain believes that while the Dutchman was an important part of the Gunners' line up, the players have improved without him.
"It's hard to lose someone like Robin, but from a team point of view that always makes you stronger," he said, according to Metro. "You find out different things about different players when they have to step up and take responsibility.
"I think Theo Walcott has really stepped up and proved himself with his goalscoring this season.
"Santi Cazorla is another really unbelievable player who has produced goals, and Lukas Podolski, Olivier Giroud and some of our defenders have got key goals too."
Chamberlain's assertion that Arsenal have improved without van Persie is backed up by the statistics; the side finished with three more points this season than the last, though because of opposition accumulating more points they ended the season in fourth place instead of third.
The club also finished with a more positive goal difference, with 35 compared to 25 while van Persie was in the team.
The shared reposnsability to provide goals appears to have worked out well, but the Gunners will be well aware that in order to compete with the likes of the Manchester clubs and Chelsea, they will need more depth up front going into the next campaign.