Absolutely ridiculous to say the match against Newcastle United is a must-win game, right? I mean, the season only just kicked off last night with the Liverpool v Norwich City game.
Unfortunately, a good start is imperative, losing your first game is not a disaster but it is a setback, it becomes a disaster though when you drop points in more than your first game as was proven last season.
Arsenal have to face Tottenham and Liverpool in their opening four games and going into those games with momentum is essential and we have that opportunity right in front of us with an opening couple of fixtures against Newcastle and Burnley.
Imagine having to go to Liverpool having dropped points in our first two games while the Reds have racked up the goals and points.
Now imagine if we go to Anfield with six points under our belts, that would put a completely different spin on that game.
Of course, the first few games are not must-wins in terms of finishing top-four, there is more than enough time to recover, again, as last season proved but a bad start will undermine the season from the get-go, it will see the feel-good factor following a successful transfer window evaporate almost instantly, it will see confidence web away, it will see the fans start to turn and so on.
Liverpool have already laid down the gauntlet with a huge win last night and the chances are Manchester City and Tottenham will follow suit and we need to do the same, especially with either or both Chelsea and Man Utd certain to drop points this weekend.
The game against Newcastle is a must-win purely in terms of momentum, we simply have to gather some before we face Liverpool and Tottenham and to prove to ourselves that this season will be different to last season.