Whoever wins the Premier League title this year, (it will not be Arsenal and we all really hope that it will not be our north London rivals Tottenham either) will have started the season as rank outsiders to be crowned champions of England. The spuds might not have been the 5000 to 1 shot that some Foxes fans have been cashing in on, but not many expected them to trouble the top four, never mind the very top.
But that just highlights what a strange season it has been and tells me that Arsenal and Arsene Wenger are getting too much stick from the football media for not winning it. Yes we were in a good position around christmas but then again you could say that Man City looked like breezing it in the first couple of months.
Actually, when you consider the money spent on players and the supposed squad strength and depth, Arsenal on paper were due to finish behind Man United, Chelsea and City anyway. So you could say that their failures this season have been bigger than ours, especially Chelsea who look like they will not even make the Europa League.
But there you have it and I for one am never surprised to see Arsenal getting slated by the media. However, I wonder if all the talk of this being our season, our best and perhaps only chance, has had an effect. Could the players and manager have been affected by being constantly told that they would win the title? Did they believe their own press and become either complacent or weighed down by expectations?
I certainly think the Gunners perform better when people don’t expect too much or when we are the underdogs. After the shambles of this season, not many will expect us to win it next time, but will that actually work in our favour?