by Andrew Crawshaw
There are only a few weeks left of this season and I thought I would look at where our Men, Women, U23 and U18 teams are and what, if anything, they are still in with a chance of winning.
If you are only interested in the Men’s first team, just skip this next part and scroll down to the end of the article as I’m going to start with the other teams first.
Our U23s are currently still involved in two competitions – their League (imaginatively called the PL2) and the Premier League International Cup (semi-final stage)
Here is the current League Table with teams having between 2 and 4 games still to play and realistically any of the top four teams could still win the title.
We have three games still to play :-
- Liverpool away Friday 6 April at 19:00
- Swansea at Borehamwood on Friday April 13
- West Ham away on Friday 20th April
If we win them we will be Champions, two wins and a draw will probably see us champions so there is all to play for in these three remaining games.
In the Premier League International Trophy we are currently at the semi-final stage after a quarter final win over Dinamo Zagreb. Our semi-final match is
- Arsenal v Villareal at the Emirates on Tuesday April 10th kick-off is 19:00.
This is a fantastic opportunity to watch our young stars do their thing for free or a bargain price in the Emirates Stadium.
The Other semi-final is between Newcastle and FC Porto at Newcastle on Thursday 12 April
Please note that only the lower tier will be in use and early booking is advised.
U18s Again our youngsters are involved in two competitions the U18 Premier League South and the FA Youth Cup (semi-final stage):-
With five games still to play it is unlikely that we will be able to overtake Chelsea at the top of this table although not mathematically impossible (Chelsea would have to lose against us and one other team and we will have to keep scoring goals) Our remaining games are all against top half teams :-
- Arsenal v Leicester – 7 April 11:30
- Arsenal v Chelsea – Tue 10 April 11:00
- Spurs v Arsenal – Sat 14 April 11 :00
- Southampton v Arsenal – Thu 18 April 13:00
- Arsenal v Swansea – Sat April 21
The winner of the Southern League will play the winner of the Northern League in a single game final to decide the overall champion.
In the FA Youth Cup we have played the first leg of our semi-final against Blackpool.
Blackpool had the advantage of playing the first leg at their home ground and it finished two all, with our youngsters not making the most of their chances. Post-Match Report FA Youth Cup: Blackpool 2-2 Arsenal – Report
Our youngsters will be looking to improve on that in the second leg which will be played at the Emirates on Monday April 16 with a 19:00 kick-off.
As with the U23s in their International Trophy semi-final this will be a great opportunity for youngsters to watch a game at the Emirates for minimal or zero cost – details are yet to be announced on Arsenal.com but should be there in the next couple of days.
The other semi-final is between Birmingham City and Chelsea and Chelsea will be the hot favourites to proceed to the final.
Our Women are already trophy winners this year having beaten ManchesterCity in the final of the Continental Cup (unlike the men who lost the corresponding fixture). We are still very much in the mix for the WSL1 league and are in the semi-final of the Women’s FA Cup so this branch of the club are having a decent season (at least that is true since Joe Montemurro took over from Pedro Losa as Manager).
Current League Table
At first glance it doesn’t look too good but we have games in hand on all of the three teams above us and still have to play Man City so have plenty of opportunities to overhaul at least Birmingham and Man City. Our remaining league games are :-
- Arsenal v Reading – Wed Apr 18 at Borehamwood @ 19:30
- Yeovil v Arsenal – Sat Apr 21 @ 15:00
- Arsenal v Liverpool – Tue 24 April at Borehamwood @ 19:30
- Birmingham City v Arsenal – Sun Apr 29 @ 14:00
- Arsenal v Man City – Sun May 13 at Borehamwood @ 14:00
- Sunderland v Arsenal – Wed May 16 @ 19:00
- Bristol City v Arsenal – Sun May 20 @ 12:00
The top two teams qualify for European Football next season and it is about time we returned to that competition. We are currently on a 10 match unbeaten run and will be looking to continue that vein of form to the end of the season.
Women’s FA Cup
We have progressed to the semi-final of this competition where we will play Everton at 12:30 on Sunday April 15th. The match will be shown live on the BBC Red Button and on the BBC iPlayer.
Chelsea play Man City in the other semi-final live on BBC2 at 15:30 on the same day. The final will take place at Wembley on 5th May.
There is a real possibility of our ladies reaching their second final of the year, and an outside possibility of a domestic treble.
Now to our Men’s First Team who to be honest have had a sub-par season.
We all know that we are currently in sixth place in the table and looking in more danger of dropping to seventh than climbing up to fourth.
Our remaining seven games are :-
- Arsenal v Southampton – Sun 8 April @ 14:15
- Newcastle v Arsenal – Sun Apr 15 @13:30
- Arsenal v West Ham – Sun Apr 22 @ 13:30
- Man United v Arsenal – Sun Apr 29 @ 16:30
- Arsenal v Burnley – Sat 5 May @ 15:00 (could move to the Sunday if we are still in the Europa League)
- Huddersfield v Arsenal – Sun May 13@ 15:00
- Leicester v Arsenal – TBA
Under normal circumstances one would think that all of the games except Man United are winnable giving us 69 points. The chance of Spurs ‘spursing it up’ to the extent of only getting 5 points are so small as to be insignificant. Our realistic best position at the end of the season is fifth and sixth is most probable.
Our only chance of silverware is therefore in the Europa League
Thursday (5th April) gives us our next game in this competition at home against CSKA Moscow with a 20:05 kickoff. It looks like all seats are sold so with a bit of luck the stadium should be fuller than of late.
The away leg is the following Thursday (12 Apr)
Should we progress the semi-final dates are Thursday 26 April and Thursday May 3rd (neither of which I can attend).
The final is in Lyon on Wednesday May 16th
So the answer is that all of Arsenal’s teams do still have things to play for, maybe not always the things we would all hope for but enough that we should all be able to cheer Arsenal on for a few weeks yet at least.
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