WHY ARSENAL CAN STILL WIN THE TITLE WITHOUT DOING THE EXTRAORDINARY.
The last one week or thereabout has been nightmarish for Arsenal fans. The League title hopes seemed dashed as another trophyless season looms. The scandalous 6-Nil defeat to title rivals Chelsea brought an uncomfortable déjà vu. Further discouraging results against Swansea and Manchester City both at the Emirates has also left many Arsenal fans confused and afraid to dare to dream.
However after Saturday’s hard-fought draw with Man City, their Coach Manuel Pellegrini had this to offer;
“Of course Arsenal are in the race; they are behind the leaders, but not by much. Four teams still have a chance to win the title,” said Pellegrini.
“All four of them will drop points before the end of the season. It is always difficult when you play against the top sides, or ones fighting to stay in the division.”
This sounds a further million miles away from the “million miles away from winning the title” verdict from former Manchester United midfielder Paul Scholes despite two further draws at the Emirates and mind you, from someone who has actually coached a football team.
Listening to the likes of Paul Scholes, one would imagine that Arsenal requires nothing short of a miracle, an extraordinary turn of event or something supernatural to win the title.
This is far from the truth and the apprehensions are unfounded and an veiled reference to the impossibility of Arsenal winning the title. The gunners are seven points behind with a low goal difference and anyone who has been following the League this season will quickly realize how fickle that is.
Arsenal will definitely have to battle hard for the title and the top four with one final push starting from next weekend against Everton. It requires a better performance from the performance of the last few weeks but definitely not impossible.
Mathematically, any of the top seven teams can still win the League but realistically any of the top four can win easily. While Everton, Manchester United and Tottenham need something dramatic or perhaps extraordinary to win the title, same cannot be said of Arsenal with six matches to go.
Watch Arsenal Live Streams With StreamFootball.tv
Of the top four, Arsenal has the easiest run in of matches. The final six matches will see Arsenal line up against Everton(away), West Ham(home), Hull City(away), Newcastle(home), West Brom (Home) and Norwich(away). Everton is perhaps the hardest and Arsenal should be able to win the other matches easily, without disrespecting those teams. Any team fighting for the title should be able to win those matches.
The match against Everton is key not only because it probably will determine finally whether we are still chasing the trophy but also determines whether we finish the top four being just four points above the Toffees in fifth place with Everton having a game at hand.
Our direct rivals have more demanding tasks. Liverpool still have to contend with Man City and Chelsea (both at Anfield), Man City also have to play Everton. I admit that any point lost in those games by our rivals is another gained by another rival but one can never rule out the possibility of some favourable draws.
The fixture pile up is also similar while we have maybe two FA cup matches in-between, Chelsea also have at least two Champions League matches while Man City have two outstanding matches. Liverpool has an advantage in this regard which is somehow cancelled out with the quality of oppositions they are to contend with.
Good enough for Arsenal, we shall not be playing those teams we seem to falter against any more. It is noteworthy that aside the four very disappointing games against Villa, Man City, Liverpool and Chelsea where we conceded 67% of the total goals against us this season, the team has been fighting and pushing for the title as much as any of our rivals. Apart from those matches, Arsenal has conceded 17 goals in 28 other premier league games. This is an incredible feat, which unfortunately was seriously blighted by those misfortunes of a game.
Finally, it is no doubt that the title is not in our hands (perhaps it’s Man City’s to lose with the outstanding games and mammoth goal difference). However, if the team is properly conditioned to go for the kill and win the last six matches, it can go our way as easily as to any of our rivals. With some injured players coming back, I believe the team can still win the FA cup and the League. I implore the fans especially the ones who go to the Emirates to make the players realise that they can still do it. The embarrassing defeats will mean nothing if we are celebrating the double.
‘Kunle Sobode, an Arsenal fan wrote in from Nigeria.