Is this going to be the season where we finish below the top six?
With 13 draws and 6 losses in 25 premiership games, the records don’t look so enticing to the eyes, and they are neither pleasing to the hearts of genuine Arsenal fans. We seem not to be moving forward, despite changing managers twice since Wenger left. It has been ‘one step forward, two steps back’, this season.
Emery began the season on a high, after winning Newcastle in the first game of the season; after that game his season began to fall apart. He was sacked and replace by Arteta, after Ljungberg was made interim coach. Under Ljungberg, the team struggled for form and for points. It got so bad that old Freddie had to ask the club management to quicken their search for a new Arsenal manager. Arteta was eventually appointed and in all fairness to him he has improved our football a bit, albeit without getting the results to compliment the play.
After Chelsea and Manchester United played out draws in their games on Saturday, I was filled with optimism that we were going to win our game against Burnley and close up the gap between us and our top six rivals. Life can be unfair at times, and it was unfair to Arsenal fans on Sunday, as they watched their game with mixed feelings. Many fans felt a draw was better than a defeat against a well disciplined Burnley team; others felt a draw meant we were not moving forward at all. I belong to the latter school of thoughts. Arsenal is not moving forward, as long as the premiership is involved, and this may push us out of the top six at the end of the season.
However, falling out of the top six, may not necessarily deny us playing in the UEFA Champions league next season, especially if we win the Europa league. If we win it, fine and good! But if we don’t, our season would be a total disaster.
From how I view things, Arsenal will do well in the remaining cup competitions they find themselves in. they will get to the semi-final of one, and get to the final of another one, and even win the competition. My instinct tells me we may win the FA cup and lose to a team in the semi-finals of the Europa league competition; although I hope my instinct would be wrong at the end of the season. Winning the Europa league and losing out in the semi-final of the FA cup, would give me more joy than how my instinct wants it.
Dear Arsenal fans, I hope I can prepare your minds for the worst? Hope you won’t fight with me for predicting us not ending the season in the top six? From the way the season is unfolding; Arsenal may yet struggle to find form till the end of the season, but will give it their best shots in the cup competitions. This may sound sad bit then that is how low we have gone as a club.
We are Arsenal and we are proud.