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What will happen in Arsenal’s remaining games this season

By Tony Attwood

If you have a good memory, or study your Arsenal history, you will know that Arsenal hold the record for the most consecutive wins in the Premier League: 14 wins between 10 February and 24 August 2002.  You will of course also know that we have just won our last 7 games in the Premier League, scoring 22 en route.

And you will know that if we carry on doing better than Tottenham, Chelsea and Newcastle we will easily slip into third place and be secure for next season, no matter what Chelsea do in the champs league.

So, it is one of those things where we could do brilliantly and secure the spot all by ourselves, or moderately, but still get there because the others don’t do so well.   Goal difference won’t help us much, for although our goal difference is better than Tottenham’s, if they win some and we lose some, the goal difference between the clubs will of course change in their favour.

So, here we are as of today, as revealed on the official Barclays web site of such things.

POS LP CLUB P W D L GF GA GD PTS
1 (2) Manchester United 30 23 4 3 74 27 47 73
2 (1) Manchester City 30 22 4 4 72 22 50 70
3 (3) Arsenal 30 18 4 8 61 39 22 58
4 (4) Tottenham Hotspur 30 16 7 7 53 35 18 55
5 (5) Chelsea 30 14 8 8 49 34 15 50
6 (6) Newcastle United 30 14 8 8 44 42 2 50

And just before I go onto the details of our games, one interesting thought is that if both Man C and Arsenal do the same thing this weekend (both win, both draw or both lose) but then Arsenal beat Man C in the next match, we will be just 9 points behind them – and we all know that leads of that sort or nature are nothing these days.  Should we win this weekend and they lose then the gap would be six.  A lot, but not impossible.

Second place this year?  Well, unlikely I know, but hell, the sun is shining in the village of Great Oakley where I live, so why not dream a little.

But back to the facts…

I start with the whole issue of sequences and runs because a run of wins comes to an end sometime – and when it does it can often end in disaster – a load of wins followed by some awful results as the players try too hard, lose their natural game, and stop believing that they will win no matter what.

So in predicting the results for the remainder of the season, do we factor that in?  If so, do we say…

QPR A W
Man City H L
Wolves A D
Wigan H D
Chelsea H L
Stoke A W
Norwich H W
West Brom A W
Points 12

That does not look like getting us to third.   But supposing we keep going and having won the last seven win the next seven – then that could even give us a shout of second!

QPR A W
Man City H W
Wolves A W
Wigan H W
Chelsea H W
Stoke A W
Norwich H W
West Brom A L
Points 21

 

So my point is that when trying to do predictions like this there is more to it than saying, “We’ll beat Wolverhampton easy” – what one has to do is look at the run of results and  the psychology of the players.

During the Unbeaten Season there was a feeling that it would never end – we would just keep going.  Defeats in the cups were irrelevant because no one would beat us in the league (until the terrible final game against Leicester when we were 0-1 down at half time – but then came back to win it 2-1 and we were invincible once again).

Trying to keep all this in mind, here’s another scenario

QPR A W
Man City H W
Wolves A W
Wigan H W
Chelsea H W
Stoke A L
Norwich H L
West Brom A D
Points 16

Stoke away is tough not because they can play football, but because no one will fancy having their leg ripped away from their body and their football career at the highest level ended.  From such events it is hard to recover.

On paper five games should be straight forward

QPR A W
Man City H
Wolves A W
Wigan H W
Chelsea H
Stoke A
Norwich H W
West Brom A W
Points 15

everything comes down to those remaining games – after all if we can’t win those five we are not on our great run any more, and it will be a case of who drops points where and when.   A draw we could get over, but a defeat in any of those five games will lead to a lot of comments about “flattering to deceive” and that Arsenal were not really as good as they pretended, and there being a need for a total clearout.

I certainly think we have nothing to fear against Chelsea so I’ll go for a win there too.  At Stoke everything depends on whether the ref is willing to stop wholesale violence or not, and what happens there will affect the next two games.

Which leaves Man City.  A draw will be psychologically very respectable.  A win will make us feel like champions and see us through to the end of the season.

In terms of the chasing pack, all of them have had their problems and the two main teams behind us have their minds on cups not the league.  Chelsea are primarily interested in the Champions League and know they might not qualify in fourth, so they will do everything under the sun to get that cup, including resting players with minor injuries who in other circumstances would play.

Tottenham will… well, you know.  As I said a couple of months back, they are due a bad run, because they are not a team in the same league as we were in our double and unbeaten seasons, and now they are in such a depression.  All teams get it – the issue is always, how long does it last.  My guess is that as they come out of it, it will still be a case of the occasional win and occasional draw and occasional defeat, with the FA Cup being their big thing.

So quite probably 15 points would see us to third.  But just imagine an unbeaten run to the end of the season and as a result beating the all time premier league record for consecutive wins, currently held by, oh, yes, I remember, Arsenal.

Second is not first, but in the era of match fixing it is not bad.

Untold Arsenal

Arsenal History Society

 

34 comments to What will happen in Arsenal’s remaining games this season

  • moon

    it looks like this arsenal machine is not stopping until the end of the season unless and i mean unless some one will be to lucky to get a draw probably stoke.

  • arsenal future manager

    Nice article, good read well done

  • legolas still trust Wenger

    i hope we keep our 3rd position and decrease the gap with 2nd i don’t want us to give Sp***rs a breath we r the Kings of LONDON

  • Brickfields Gunners

    I ‘d agree with that a win against ManShitty would be great but a draw would be acceptable.The other tough games would be Chelski & Stoked but I think we are up to it.
    The relegationed threatened teams will fight tooth and nail for their survival but again I think we will prevail.
    I like to think that we will not be beaten again this season.Hopefully starting another unbeatened run to extend into next season.
    Keep the faith !

  • gunman

    we should be controlling 3rd place at the end of the season

  • Micko

    I don’t think it should make too much of a difference if the winning run in the Premiership does come to an end, as during that sequence we have also lost 2 cup games.
    More to the point since the second half of the Tottenham game we seem to have had a fair crack of the whip from the referees.
    Will this continue with Dean back reffing us tomorrow and what exactly did happen at half time in that Tottenham match ?

  • Piers McMorgan

    HEY THERE!
    Dont mug yourself Tony! 2nd place…..? AFC are rubbish this season. we ave just got a little bit lucky after we blew the fa cup, champs league and prem…

    A man of your age should know better.

  • deejay

    I think man city will play negatively and come for / get a draw ; We play chelsea hopefully in the middle of their Barcelona semi’s, so i think a win.

  • The Smig

    Is their any possibility of ManUre and Citeh imploading and loosing/drawing 4 games before the end of the season….?

  • brian

    Very interesting series of possibilities.However the underlying problem for me is that I still do not trust our team as I would for instance Man Utd.If say we were to beat Man City (not at all impossible)I still have the feeling that we would begin again to think how good we were and then fail to deliver at Wolves 3 days later.Until we develop that killer attitude and treat every game as a Man City type game I shall remain worried.

  • T2T

    Chelsea will be a difficult game for 3 reasons; Chelsea are still a quality side, they want revenge from what we did to them at The Bridge and Di Matteo has reverted to the well known Chelsea system developed over years that AVB tried to change.

  • nicky

    Re the Stoke game, if there is consistent mayhem on the pitch, unpunished by the referee, I would like to see Wenger order the team off the field and await the outcome. Only by such drastic action will an in-depth investigation into thuggery take place, particularly where the referee is biased or incompetemt.

  • Dan T

    The big question is how we would respond if a result does not go our way. On recent evidence I think we would respond positively.

    Of course this is all irrelevant as we aren’t going to lose another game. It will be interesting to see how City respond after a royal thrashing at the Emirates though. 2nd place? I still have hope.

  • Dan T

    @ Deejay

    I really can’t see City playing negatively at this stage of the season. They will come to the Emirates needing 3 points. If they play for a draw then they have given up on the title. 1st goal will be crucial – should be a great game.

  • Asif

    ManShitty and Chelskea are both going to lose at the Emirates!!!

  • bob

    nicky,

    Your vision would be a beautiful thing to behold!

    And did you follow Walter’s link to the den of the midwives whose job description is to deliver the Cup for Don Fergus to kiss? http://footballisfixed.blogspot.com/2012/03/what-incredible-fluke-vi_25.html

  • bob

    The Smig,
    ManUre imploding? Perhaps, but never. For that would mean the failure of the Safety Net. And that would mean the sacking of the Net Minders who, better believe, are minding the gap. Behold: http://footballisfixed.blogspot.com/2012/03/what-incredible-fluke-vi_25.html

  • KnysnaGunner

    I said two weeks ago that I have visions of 2nd place. United will win the league, Mike Riley will make sure of that. In the process his henchmen will give City a very hard time, which may just give us the opportunity to sneek in unexpectedly. I also suspect that the likes of Webb Walton and Dean will not see us as a big a threat as City for now, giving us a bit of a break for the rest of this season. (As we have witnessed in a few games recently) Something else counting in our favour is the fact that Chelsea has a heavy schedule around the time they play us, more so if they progress to the s/f of the CL, which they very much look like doing at this stage. We are capable enough to take care of Stoke, even away.

  • KnysnaGunner

    Having said all of the above, tomorrow will give us a very good indication of where we stand with the men from the pgmol. As pointed out on this site, for some unknown reason QPR is one of their favorites. And I still do not trust Mike Dean in any match involving Arsenal. If we can come through this one with 3 points I will be delighted and much relieved. (Relieved because of the officials not because of a lack of faith in our team and manager)

  • The Spartan

    UEFA will never be able to gag Le Prof for he speaks the truth!They’re feeling the pressure.The Arsenal, the team with the healthiest Balance Sheet in England, will start off by winning the next 8 games on route to winning the CL and the EPL next season.

  • Wooby

    @KnysnaGunner, not a surprise that QPR would appear to be one of the PMGOL’s favs. Mark Hughes played for ManUre and descends from SAF’s branch of managers; QPR’s owner has previously sponsored the PMGOL through one of his companies. Stoke’s gaffer Tony Pulis is a known SAF admirer. Is it any wonder that these two clubs would get the benefit of the doubt?

    UEFA is a quite the joke isn’t it? “We can only base things on the referee’s report and nothing else”. That only works if the ref is not bent in the first place … who does UEFA think they are kidding?

  • Gf60

    Boy. Your mathematics is not good. 100 lines “4 wins and 2 draws =14points not 12.
    “QPR A W
    Man Cit H L
    Wolves A D
    Wigan H D
    Chelsea H L
    Stoke A W
    Norwich H W
    WBrom A W
    Points 12”

    Plus another 100 stating I must not think negatively!

  • Shakabula Gooner

    Tony,
    Good write up.

    However, I will prefer to assume that Tiny Tots has a great run in their last 8 games, racking up 7wins and 1draw (total points in 8 games = 22 and for the season = 77).

    Of course, I will prefer that Arsenal still beats them despite their great run by racking up at least 78points for the season. Since we currently are at 58points, my desired target for Arsenal over the last 8games is 20points out of a possible 24. I will not want Arsenal to lose more than 4points. That is, 2draws.

    With the current attitude of the players in the club, it is a wonderful testament of how they have turned things around that this outlook is feasible.

    Wrt to how referees can influence this outcome for Arsenal and for clubs up and down the league table, it is a sad testimony of how much belief in their neutrality have been eroded in the past few years. Nevertheless, I am inclined to believe that UA’s Referee Performance blogs may have had some role to play in protecting Arsenal’s results from their whims and caprices (in coparison with other previous seasons). The more reason to keep up the good job: let them know that we shall moan and groan to our fan base and to all who care to listen every time they act blatantly to deny us of well deserved and well earned match points!

  • RedGooner

    Tony , I think we will gain more points than that on the run in.

    Unless they ( who ever controls the refs ) want the race for the premier league close to the finish and decide that a Ref should keep it close by allowing city to win in the emirates we should get a draw.

    I think we will draw with stoke and chelsea and win all the other games.
    Wolves are a disgrace now totaly different proposition than under mccarthy and Wigan at home looks easy also.

  • nicky

    @Bob,
    When someone as respected as Tony says “No-one will fancy their leg ripped away from their body and their foofball career at the highest level ended”….. and asks whether “the ref is prepared to stop wholesale violence or not”……all this about a FOOTBALL TEAM (not a war zone) then something drastic must be done. Thugs like Shawcross, Huth and Walters simply have no place in our national game.

  • bob

    nicky,
    I couldn’t agree more, cheers.

  • Alex

    Closing the gap and sitting on top of the tiny totty is wonderfull.JOOOOOY.

    The fact remain that we won our last seven games and the others they don`t.Having said that i am not that comfortable at all like many gunners.

    Looking back at the Newcastle and Liverpool games remember that it could have been easily a draw as we manage to win it just.Yes it tells the mental strentgh and no give up attitude of the team.The fact remain we do not win it ala Villa.To me the match against Villa was a the most comfortable one.No issue at all.
    Again the win against the Evertonian does not give any kind of assurance.That is a draw not a win in my book.I am not talking about the full points gained but the merit of the game is not three point to me.
    Because i see the remaining matches from this perspective i would`nt be surprised if there will be more points dropped.

    Then again i look our improving injury situation and we are facing Chelsky at home surely three point and so against Mancity because something is telling me WILSHERE will run the show that day.
    As we speak the team spirit is high and not only that fact of the last output this team is working hard upto the final wistle.I dont see any chances for the relegation teams.
    Sorry 2W AND QPR are not going to sniff even a point.

    STOKE
    No football only physical harrasment,breaking kegs and now they start cutting ears(SILVA)
    Again we will have a comfortable win.
    Reason for that is
    1:they dont have anything to gain this time as their primary intention is to stay in the league and they are doing fine on that.
    2:We are not going to win the title and we are not an obstacle to Manure.Hence i dont think we will see an over commited Stoke.Man city they are a title contenders therefor they have to do what they have to do in order to make happy red nose.Again what matter for at this moment in time is the three point and we will earn it.
    For not looking to optimistic i will say couple of draws with the broom and norwich.

  • bob

    nicky,
    given that he’s captain of tomorrow’s side,
    would you be adding Joey Barton to your rogue’s gallery?

  • Adam

    What might work in Arsenals favour with the Chelsea & City games, is that they HAVE to win, so attack away my little mercenaries.

  • nicky

    @ Bob,
    Yeah. Alongside Shawcross and Roy Keane…a right trio.:roll:

  • Damien Luu

    Second place would be a truly amazing dream comes true. Some anti-Arsenal sh*theads in disguises of Gooners will still criticize us, of course, as we would not win the league. (“That’s seventh year of winning nothing” and all those sh*ts.)

    But what’s really important is securing the third place. (Ha, say that as if you’ve dared to dream about it at the beginning of the season!) Just play our football with all our hearts and we will surely get that, and who knows, something extra.

  • good thing the refs can read tony. it would appear some fairness has crept into their handling of our games since walter and his team has started publishing reviews. relieved of that burden, the team can have a fair shake at second and the possibility of dominating next season though i am sensitive to the prospect of remaining chickenless as well.

    if we continue to press the referees through analysis, and begin to bang the drum for a ref relegation system that i proposed back in 2011 (or was it 2010?) we may see irrefutable proof of progress in the years to come.

    should we fail to hatch next season i could care less i must confess. i am hooked on the style of our play and would rather watch and experience the rush of adrenaline it provides than settle for boring football. long may wenger reign supreme, and long may arsenal provide the beauty in the beautiful game.