The Gunners, who currently sit sixth in the Premier League and four points short of fourth, added only left-back Nacho Monreal to their squad during the winter transfer window.
But, despite running the risk of missing out on Champions League qualification, the Frenchman claimed that securing top talent in the middle of the season is too difficult - even with the opportunity to scout at the Africa Cup of Nations available to him.
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He told reporters: "We worked very hard on it, we were everywhere. I would have loved to take somebody else but we didn't find anyone.
"In the Africa Cup of Nations, the best player is Gervinho. It's simple. Why should we go there when the best player is Gervinho? We already have Gervinho.
"Manchester United, who did they buy? Chelsea, who did they buy? Liverpool bought. Man City didn't buy – for one single reason.
“For the top, top, top clubs, it's difficult to strengthen your team in the middle of the season."
Gervinho is set to return from the tournament this week after Cote d'Ivoire saw their Afcon dreams ended by a 2-1 quarter-final defeat to Nigeria.