By Chris Harris

Alan Smith believes a couple of astute signings can turn Arsenal's potential into tangible reward.

Arsène Wenger's side finished 18 points adrift of champions Manchester United last season but the Frenchman revealed before the end of the campaign that he is in the market for "one or two experienced players" to bolster his talented squad.

Smith knows what it takes to win the title after playing a starring role in George Graham's championship triumphs of 1989 and 1991. The two-time Golden Boot winner would love to see Arsenal return to the Premier League summit next season and expects this summer's new arrivals to give them a fighting chance.

"There were periods last season in which they produced some outstanding football but they never looked like a title-winning team in my book," Smith told

"I suppose that was hammered home in the games against Manchester United in the Champions League and then Chelsea. They were just a bit short.

"There is so much talent, so much potential, but the mix isn't quite right at the moment. Everybody is telling Arsène Wenger that so I think it will be interesting to see who arrives in the summer, I think one or two will come in to give the squad a better balance.

"I would like to see a commanding stopper brought in," added Smith. "He doesn't need to be technically brilliant, but someone who can head balls away and command the box. It would be nice to see a holding midfielder too, someone to work alongside Cesc Fabregas when we need someone to sit there and break up the play."

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4 Jun 2009