Though Arsenal have won their last three matches, and appear to have overcome some of their early-season struggles, the club remains beset by injuries to key players, while a legitimate substitute to star forward Robin van Persie has failed to emerge.
Manager Arsene Wenger may be forced to explore more transfer options in January, with midfielder Jack Wilshere and defender Bacary Sagna sidelined for months with injuries.
Centre back Thomas Vermaelen is now available, but the Belgian star and right back Kieran Gibbs have failed to avoid injuries in recent years.
Despite a terrible missed penalty kick in a painful loss to Manchester United, van Persie has been exceptional this season. However, the Gunners appear to be too reliant on the Dutch striker's success in bailing the club out. A new goal-scorer needs to make his presence known for Wenger's side to ease the pressure on van Persie.
With the January transfer window almost two months away, Wenger will need to keep an eye on potential players that can help Arsenal vault to a top-four spot on the Premier League table to ensure a spot in next season's Champions League.
Some names have emerged, and re-emerged, in recent weeks that might benefit the club.
The door appears to still be open for Gary Cahill to join Arsenal. Daily Mail reported that the centre back is growing increasingly frustrated with Bolton, and noted that Arsenal, along with London rivals Tottenham and Chelsea, could still be in the mix to add the 25-year-old.
Bolton and Arsenal were involved in a heated exchange when Arsenal only bid £6 million, while others have rated his value at roughly £17 million. Cahill will be available on a free transfer in the summer, so his time with Wanderers will likely conclude this winter.
Marseille's Andre Ayew is still an Arsenal target, Metro reported. The 21-year-old winger has also drawn interest from Inter, and the asking price could be about £12 million.
Metro has also reported that Arsenal will be competing with Roma for Werder Bremen attacking midfielder Marko Marin. According to Marin's agent, the 22-year-old German will only be available in the summer. Whether or not that is the case, Arsenal may still make a bid, though they will have competition with Chelsea, Liverpool, and Tottenham having shown interest, as well.
There is no word on whether Wenger will make another bid for Marseille midfielder Lucho Gonzalez. Wenger recently admitted that he inquired about Gonzalez, but only on loan. A notable former Arsenal midfielder has reached out to the possibility of Gonzalez playing at Emirates.
When you're under Wenger, you progress and succeed, Robert Pires told La Provence. He'd succeed and progress like all the players who arrived at Arsenal.
As usual, Arsenal continues to keep an eye out on finding burgeoning talent. Nigerian winger Ahmed Musa, 19, and Welsh defender Elliott Hewitt, 17, are on the club's radar, according to Daily Mail.
While Wenger may be looking to make additions, there are current players who may have overstayed their welcome. Marouane Chamakh may be gone by January, as the forward has failed to live up to expectations, and with some Ligue 1 clubs interested in the Moroccan.
According to Daily Mail, Wenger had privately told his staff that he is ready to sell Chamakh. Paris Saint-Germain, Lille, Bordeaux, and Marseille, are reportedly interested.
Andrei Arshavin, who has publicly admitted that he has not performed to his own standards, might be headed to Anzhi Makhachkala. New reports have surfaced that the Russian club remain interested in the winger after pursuing Arshavin in the summer. In July, The Times reported that Turkish club Galatasaray offered Arsenal £13.5 million for Arshavin.
Two possible deals that have been reported, but seem quite unlikely, is Theo Walcott leaving for Juventus, and Eden Hazard moving to Emirates, in a £40 million deal. Arsenal have shown little interest in moving Walcott, and the club has proven to be extremely dismissive of spending a huge sum on one player.
How critical Arsenal's injury situation, and how desperate the club needs to upgrade specific positions, will likely determine how active they are in January.
Currently, the Gunners are in seventh place. The race to the top tier might be competitive in the second half of the EPL season.