As if it is not bad enough for the Arsenal fans and our general levels of belief in the team’s ability to finish the season with a flourish, but we have former players and reporters in the football media lining up to tell us just why the Gunners will fail.
To be honest we have become used to it over the years but it is always a bit more annoying when it is one of our former stars writing Arsenal off, although Paul Merson does have some form here and has been an outspoken critic of Arsene Wenger many times in the past.
The former England and Arsenal midfielder got stuck into the manager again today, telling Sky Sports that he half expected the Frenchman to throw away our chances of the FA cup by resting the best players ahead of the pipe dream that is our Champions League trip to Barcelona.
He said, “Watford is Wenger’s biggest game for a long, long time. I think it is a massive match but it wouldn’t surprise me if he made 10 changes and saved everybody for Barcelona, which they have no chance in.”
But his harshest words were about our chances of pipping Leicester and Tottenham to the Premier League title, which he reckons are about zero because of the inability of the Gunners to get much out of the tough away games we have left.
The pundit declared, “They have no chance [of winning the league]. I say no chance because with the three away games they have at Everton, West Ham and Man City, the best I can see is two draws and a win, and I’m being kind with that.
“That’s five points gained and it still leaves them three points behind Leicester, and Leicester would have three games in hand.
“Man City would be the dangers to Leicester for me. Arsenal and Tottenham fans are each hoping the other doesn’t win the league and Leicester are going to run away from both and win it.
“The two sets of fans are going to be left saying, ‘Yes, but we finished above you!’ But who cares?”
Okay Merse you are entitled to your opinion, of course, but what’s your reasoning? Nobody gave us much chance of getting anything away to the spuds last weekend especially once we were trailing with a man down. A couple of years ago there was a stack of evidence that Arsenal struggled in big away games but we have proved since then, including away to Man City last season, that we can win these games.
We broke our away duck in Greece this season when under huge pressure and we thumped Leciester 5-2, so while I agree that Arsenal winning the title is unlikely and I personally do not think it will happen, to say we can’t and to say we can’t get much from these away games is a bit harsh don’t you think?