Until Arsenal do actually get to lift the Premier League trophy again there will always be plenty of critics and doubters out there in football land. Even now that the Gunners finish the year on top of the league table and have out performed every other club by some distance since last new year, pundits and reporters seem as though they cannot bring themselves to believe that this will be our season.
Only time will tell, of course, and they might be right, and Arsene Wenger accepts that someone like Man City could end up denying Arsenal the title, but he also insists that it will not be because of some perceived deficiency at the club.
As reported on the Arsenal website the manager was bullish in his assertion that the Gunners now have all the ammunition and the right tools to keep going and prove the doubters wrong.
He said, “From January 1 to December 31 we were consistent and have improved our results. The team has grown in stature, is more mature, more reliable and we won the FA Cup and the Community Shield. We are in a strong position in the Premier League so hopefully 2016 will be better.
“We are mature enough and we have the requested quality to fight and compete. The most important thing is to feel, at the end of the season, that we have given absolutely everything to be successful. After that, if somebody has been better than us, we will accept it, but we want to fight to show that we have a chance.
“The public opinion is not always stable, it changes a lot. It is always linked with the final result. We have to rise above that and show that we can deal with it. I believe we have to be guided by playing better football and being a real team in every game and show that we can be competitive.
“We can have great solidarity in every single game and after that we have a chance. You cannot rule us out after 19 games. We have chance and we want to fight for it. Everybody wants to predict who will win it at halfway but even for the most intelligent people [that is] impossible.
“Mathematically you cannot rule out anyone down to Manchester United. Can Liverpool still fight for it? I don’t know. We have a difficult programme and we have to focus on ourselves more than we have to look at who will be our main threat. We have to focus on our performances.
“City are the favourites still because they might have the most glamorous potential and they are not far behind. After that, Tottenham are not far behind and Leicester are still there after 19 games. You have to respect that and they also have no European competition. The gap is not big enough, nine points is not big enough to say that anyone is out of it.”
Do you agree with the Frenchman that Arsenal have fixed all the problems that have been holding us back and should now be seen as true Premier League contenders?