Arsenal can win the Premier League - here are seven reasons why
Superb recent form, the strongest squad in the league, Chelsea still to visit the Emirates...what could possibly go wrong?
1) Four out of Arsenal's last six matches are at home
Given how much of a fortress Emirates has become, this is a big advantage for Arsene Wenger’s team.
Arsenal have won their last nine home matches in the League - a club record - and has included impressive wins such as the 4-1 thrashing of Liverpool at the start of April.
2) Chelsea are still to visit the Emirates
Arsene Wenger has been at pains to point out that his team can’t control Chelsea’s results, all they can do is keep winning.
But on April 26 the Frenchman’s team take on Chelsea and can lay down a big marker by winning the game and reducing their lead at the top of the table.
A defeat for Jose Mourinho’s men could also affect them negatively in their remaining fixtures.
7) Arsenal’s squad is stronger than any in the league
Arsenal have more Premier League goalscorers this season than any other team, and Danny Welbeck, Theo Walcott and Tomas Rosicky can’t get a game right now.
At the back, Arsenal look almost as well staffed with international defenders Gabriel, Kieran Gibbs and Calum Chambers similarly twiddling their thumbs.
Just to add to Arsenal’s options, they are soon to welcome back Jack Wilshere, Mathieu Debuchy and Mikel Arteta, with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain also to return before the end of the season. He hasn’t needed to in recent weeks, but if a game is going against Arsenal, Wenger has a wide range of options to throw on from the bench.
Top five clubs with most different goalscorers
Man City 14
C Palace 13
4) Arsenal can't stop winning at the moment
Eight league wins in a row is Arsenal's best run since the 'Invincibles' season, and in that run they haven't once fallen behind or conceded an equaliser.
Maximum points in their remaining six games would see them finish the season with 84 points, which could just be enough to win the league.
But surely Arsenal can't win 14 league games in a row we hear you cry? Well, they managed it in 2002 and Richard Wright was on the club's books then.
5) If opposition goalkeepers stop dropping clangers, Chelsea will start dropping points
Chelsea’s last three matches have seen them win thanks to a goalkeeping error, with Hull’s Allan McGregor, Stoke’s Asmir Begovic and QPR’s Rob Green giving them a helping hand.
Chelsea can’t keep getting away with the insipid displays that have characterised their recent form. Against QPR in particular they looked blunt going forward all game, and only managed one shot on target against a team which had conceded three goals against Aston Villa earlier in the week.
A big improvement is needed, with matches against Manchester United and Arsenal up next, particularly with Diego Costa - their standout striker (below) - injured.
6) Chelsea have some tough looking fixtures
Chelsea welcome United to Stamford Bridge on Saturday, with Louis van Gaal’s team hoping to continue their electrifying recent form.
The sides drew 1-1 earlier in the season, and it should be a fascinating tactical battle between two of the best managers in world football.
Chelsea will also feel trepidation about facing Crystal Palace, who beat them last season (albeit at Selhurst Park) and are one of the league’s form teams.
7) United at Old Trafford should hold no fears
On paper, a match away at in-form Manchester United looks like being Arsenal’s toughest test, but their 2-1 win in the FA Cup will put paid to any inferiority complex.
On that occasion, Francis Coquelin shackled Marouane Fellaini superbly, while Welbeck and Alexis Sanchez looked a threat all night on the counter-attack.
After years of punishment from United, Arsenal can now legitimately feel they’re on a level playing field with the 13-time Premier League winners.