Nigel Winterburn
Winterburn has urged Wenger to buy a striker.

Ex-Arsenal defender Nigel Winterburn believes manager Arsene Wenger will make signing a striker in the January transfer window a priority, ruing his lost chances for targets in the summer such as Chelsea's Demba Ba.

Olivier Giroud has led the line for the Gunners this season, scoring seven goals and making five assists but defender Laurent Koscielny has led the concerns over the strain on the Frenchman.

Nicklas Bendtner has provided inadequate backup for Arsenal this season, with the Denmark international's appearances only working to emphasise the lack of depth available to Arsene Wenger in attack.

Chief executive Ivan Gazidis has urged Wenger, who secured Mesut Ozil on deadline day in the summer window, to sign an additional forward in January and Winterburn concurs.

"I've been worried over the last few games with Giroud," Winterburn said. "He is a player I really like from last season, people were comparing him last season to Van Persie, which was completely wrong.

"I think 17 goals last year, he's done well but he hasn't had that opportunity to be pulled out for a game and have a rest simply because even if they'd had the option of Podolski or Walcott in there they can't because they're both injured.

"That's the real area (of concern) for me that centre forward area. We know they tried (to sign a striker) before Ozil. There was talk about Demba Ba wasn't there? I think he knew that.

"When you look at it in the cold light of day - they got caught out. They probably hoped they could bring in another forward and it didn't work for them.

"Giroud has to stay fit until January and I can't see any way that they won't sign somebody whether it be a loan signing or a permanent signing; I think Arsene Wenger will have to do that"

Arsenal's attacking woes were exposed as they lost 1-0 to champions Manchester United at Old Trafford on Sunday, with Robin van Persie rubbing further salt in the wound with a clinical headed winner.

Wenger is without Theo Walcott and Lukas Podolski, both of whom have been entrusted with playing through the middle previously for Arsenal, through injury and despite spending big at the end of last season the French boss could yet turn to other members of his squad to fill the void.