Arsenal have been urged to loosen the purse strings and sign Antoine Griezmann. Arsene Wenger has traditionally refrained from spending big in the transfer market – but recent poor results has drawn criticism and uncertainty over his future.

The Gunners have not won a Premier League game since February's 2-0 success over Hull City – leading to Wenger's men dropping out of the top four. The north Londoners have also crashed out of the Champions League after a humiliating 10-2 aggregate defeat to Bayern Munich.

With Arsenal's fortunes dwindling, and Wenger set to stay at The Emirates Stadium, attention has turned to how the club can breach the gap to their rivals. Speculation continues to surround the future of Griezmann, and ex-forward John Hartson says his former club must splash the cash to land the France international.

"If he [Wenger] does stay he needs to go after the big players and he needs to make Arsenal competitive again in these next two years," the Welshman told BBC World Service. "But he never does seem to be in for the big, big players.

"We now know that this summer Griezmann will probably move from Atletico Madrid and he's going to cost you £85m and he's going to cost you £250,000-a-week. We know that Arsenal won't sign him but they've got to. That's where they need to be because the Chelsea's will and the Manchester United's will and the Manchester City's will.

"But I just feel pay the wages because it would be a crying shame is if Arsene Wenger was to leave and somebody was to come in as the next manager – not even half the nous that Wenger has, not half the knowledge in terms of being the manager that Wenger has shown – and he spends £300m overnight. What a crying shame that would be. So if the money's there why doesn't he just go and spend it?"

Arsenal's primary concern going into the off-season is the future of Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil. Both players are yet to agree extensions as the pair prepare to enter the final 12 months of their respective deals –with speculation rife over whether they will commit to the club beyond the end of the summer.

Antoine Griezmann
Griezmann is expected to leave Atletico this summer after months of speculation. Getty Images