Is Man Utd the team Arsenal must beat to EPL title

It is hard to say before the new Premier League season has even begun whether Arsenal will do better this time and be one of the sides in contention to lift the EPL trophy next May, but we certainly hope so and I for one am feeling quietly confident that the Gunners will push and make more of a fist of it.

Just as hard to predict, though, is which other clubs are going to be the strongest, as we saw last season that there are some very strong contenders and that things can soon change over the course of the season. We also saw the year before that a shock can still happen in football after the rank outsiders Leicester City beat all of the big boys to the title.

So assuming that Arsenal do not flop again this season, I have been thinking about who might be our main rivals for the title and even though Man City have spent big and look a huge threat going forward, while Chelsea have added some quality to the squad that romped it last time, the ones that worry me are Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United.

For me the transfers of Lukaku and Matic have given an already strong side a big boost and we know that their manager has a knack of winning things. They won three trophies last season despite only finishing 6th and they were only just beat by the Spanish giants Real Madrid in the UEFA super cup this week, so do you agree that United are the team to beat if Arsenal are to be crowned champions?


  1. McLovin says:

    I don’t think so.

    I think Lukaku and Matic are brutish players but their technical ability is limited and not on the same level as some other top midfielders/forwards in the league. They are not all that in my opinion. And Lindelöf looks completely lost.

    City on the other hand have looked menacing in pre-season. If they fall short, it will be because of their defence.

    Spurs have not bought anyone but they scored the most and conceded the least last season so they should be the team to beat this season. Their enemy will be inexperience and lack of winning mentality. Also the contract disputes might be an issue, I just read Danny Rose stating “he’s worth more than he’s earning”.

    Chelsea looks like a mess right now. 17 first team players and only 2 English, they are desperate at the moment for players and the HG quota.

    And Liverpool willl be tough to beat as well, but I don’t think they’ll be challenging for the title. Klopp’s system will injure the players (Lallana already 3 months out with a THIGH INJURY).

    With our current squad I reckon we can finish 3rd at maximum. We cetainly lack a midfielder and possibly one forward even Sanchez staying.

    1. muff d says:

      appreciate your optimism bro but i reckon top 4 will be beyond us unless we get cazorla back

      ot. danny rose made a bold move with this interview until u realise hes on 65 a week
      spuds are blagging a low wage structure.

      harry kane on 100 a week – city an man u would give him treble that

      1. McLovin says:

        We are paying Debuchy more than Danny Rose is earning..

        1. TH14-TW14 says:

          All these comparisons are completely out of context. When we bought Debuchy he was the first choice in the French National Team ahead of Arsenal’s first choice Sagna that he replaced. At the time, Rose was still trying to establish himself. The fact that injuries limited Debuchy does not in anyway reduce the fact that he earned the contract at the time he signed it. What would Arsenal have done after he fell out of favour? Stop paying him his wages that was mutually agreed? Don’t tell me sell him. Player has to accept offers before club can sell.

  2. Uzi Ozil says:

    Teams to beat are the other nineteen teams..

    Team to beat is Arsenal.

  3. Pablo Picasso says:


    I for one feel Man City will sweep teams away this season. United will be hard to beat, like any other Mou team but there attack is not the most convincing even with the purchase of Lukaku.

    My analysis is as follows and teams are not aligned to log position at the end of the season:

    – Man City – Strong attack – balanced midfield – average defence – good squad depth
    – Spurs – Strong attack – relatively balanced midfield – good defence – small squad (no bench)
    – Man U – Average attack – physical midfield – good defence – good squad depth
    – Lpool – Relatively good attack – average midfield – average defence – no quality on the bench
    – Arsenal – Relatively good attack – average midfield – good defence – good squad depth

    1. Raj says:

      I would say our defence is average not good , we need one good and experienced CB and a strong CM .

      1. TH14-TW14 says:

        Our attack is Stronger than Spurs’ and as good as City’s. Our issue with defence is not about players, its about Organisation. Vertongen and Alderwied are not better than Kos and Mustaffi, Rose is not better in defending than Monreal and now Sead, neither is Weimer better than Bellerin. Spurs organise better defensively and that’s where the issue is. We will not improve defensively even if we transfer Spurs defence to Arsenal unless we organise differently as we did in the switch to back 3 towards the end of last season.

    2. TH14-TW14 says:

      City scored 80 goals in the EPL last season against our 77. That’s only 3 more goals than us. We added Lacazette (a pure striker) to our attak while they added Bernado Silva (an attacking midfielder) yet you think they are stronger than us in attack. Many Arsenal fans like to see everything in other teams as great while ours as average.

  4. Twig says:

    The funny thing is that those two teams you mentioned might be no where near the top 4 come May

  5. Break-on-through says:

    They are a huge threat now, Mourinho has added height to his team. They are a big side now, and when big players play Mourinho’s type of football, they are a difficult side to grapple with. Now he may have added goals. Last season they got allot of clean sheets, so they had something going for them, it won them a European cup in the end. Now that they are taller, with some quality added up top, and that has-been rolled out the door, yes I’d say they’ll be thereabouts. We’ll have to hope that they take time gelling and stuff, but Mourinho’s game is not a passing game, not as much gel needed for that quiff.

    City might need a gelling period, depends on the fixtures too. Ideally you’d want a couple of well established toughies in the early stages, so to try and knock their confidence before they get that up.
    Liverpool, they need defenders but the problem is Klopp knows that too. They have money to spend, and right now they are probably the team with the forwards most defenders fear playing the most.
    Chelsea oddly do not look as good as last season, well I say oddly but Costa – Moratta, no contest. Hazard I didn’t see play. I think Conte was was picking a team and not taking preseason nearly as serious as he takes the real thing. Whether he done it to scare some people into handing him over the cheque book, or if it’s just his way, I couldn’t say. They won the title last season, and all those players were new to him, so I’d call someone silly if they wrote Chelsea off because of some preseason games.
    Ourselves, we know ourselves better than anyone, which is usually a difficult thing to master. We need more players, we should be a bit better than last season but not by leaps and bounds. We still have the same defence. Midfield is getting weaker as the years pass. But finally we may have inched in the other direction at CF (might or should). We found a system that helps our defence however, so that is a plus. But teams have jobs in trying to turn our formation into their plus. Allot to ponder, only one day to kick off, come on you Gooners.

  6. mikki says:

    I strongly believe that man u can only be on top of the league table come may next year if mouriho changes his mind set of playing deep against other teams and hoping for counter attack,this time he has to attack and he has the players to do that,without that man u won’t make top 4,likewise arsenal too,aresnal need to buy the right players if they are to do well this season,lacazede and kolasinic won,t make much difference to the team with out holding and central midfielder like Santo carzola,and maybe lemar too…..if we get this players we are good to go without that we have to fold our hands to see what will be the fate of arsenal come may next……

  7. Nothing changed says:

    Part of me remembers the Mourinho who build super teams at Chelsea, Inter, and Real. Therefor I was afraid of his arrival at Man U and what it would mean for us. In reality, not unlike Wenger, Mourinho has been living off his past successes. Although his past is a lot more recent than Wenger’s.

    His last season at Real was ineffective, as was his last season at Chelsea when he completely lost his squad, as was his first season with Man U., Yes, he won the Europe League but to me, that is not a major trophy and his PL campaign was meek. His teams now look like they play like robots with the hand brake on worried to do something wrong, to be out of position. They don’t resemble the Mourinho teams of old who dominated in a disciplined counter-attacking way but showed no fear.

    Can he rediscover his touch or has the game also passed him by? He sure spent the money last season and this season and to me, being a PL veteran there should be more pressure on him than on Pep who is only in his second season.

    Their performance against Real looked labored and heavy IMO. Not sure if Mourinho still has it but don’t count him out.

  8. waal2waal says:

    …to enhance our chances of winning epl we must go out to annihilate 4 teams based in the north-west of england where is found football’s more ardent fans and support. pretty much in the same way gladiator – marcus maximus – is advised to go into the arena and win over the crowd our team must be “robust” to go in the dragons dens at old trafford and anfield and come away victorious.

    the team must win over our fans. it must “go in boldly” against the crocodiles of goodison and face the snakes pit that is at the etihad – after taming these foes it has to hoist our “cannon standard” and declare arsenal are rulers of the north-west (emphasis).

    *we need only take a point (or two) at stamford bridge but we show our credibility when the team has humbled the northwest rivals (includes pundits, fans and naysayers).

  9. Kostafi says:

    Anyone who watched the UEFA Super Cup would have seen Mourinho resort to long balls towards the end when they were 2-nil down. On comes Fellaini…
    United have an expensive squad- assembled for their physicality which is what Mourinho likes, but a technically more astute side (like City or Arsenal) will brush them aside on their day. Spurs can probably match them physically and the 343 formation they and Chelsea use will continue to catch Mourinho’s 433 out away. Add their European ventures and Mourinho’s antipathy towards squad rotation, you have a side vulnerable to draws or dropping points.
    The icing on the cake is Lukaku who is known for his barren spells… He will get braces and hat tricks when he is in form, when he is not though Mourinho will berate or drop him.
    I’m getting special toffee popcorn waiting for that particular drama to unfold.
    City are the team to pip to the post this season- their attacking talent will overpower 15 of the leagues 20 teams with ease even if they concede silly goals along the way.

  10. BZ says:

    why do we call an attack of A. Sanchez, A. Lagazette, M. Ozil, D Welbeck, O. Giroud a Relatively good attack? how is spurs or city attacks stronger than this ?

    1. TH14-TW14 says:

      Include Walcott there. Though many here don’t reckon with Walcott but he still scored 19 goals last season, the same as Raheem Sterlin and Leroy Sane combined (key components of City’s so famed attack)

      1. TH14-TW14 says:

        For further perspective, the much respected De Bruyne scored 7 goals in all competitions last year. Walcott scored nearly 3 times that (19 goals) yet he is so much disrespected by many “fans” here.

  11. tas says:

    Off topic is OG the unsung hero, i say YES the guy gets huge criticism from fans and pundits and still true to Arsenal and dose the job more than his ability, the guy is a true Gunner and probably we will chase him out of the Emirates with a stick

    1. waal2waal says:

      …ollie g, kos and per must be a dream to manage – loyalty is everything.

  12. Anko says:

    There are many elements to winning especially the premier league. Having a good and expensive team, the best manager etc might or might not be enough. And having a perfect team could become the main problem (Tottenham). Tottenham are so perfect no additions could do better. Man united have spent lots of money buying few players (180 million for just two players) but this does not make them the team to beat. Any team can win a football match on any given day. They have lots of ex players as pundits so it is natural that people will think they are the team to beat. Just take a look at Paul Scholes’s reaction after they lost to Real Madrid and you will know he is worried.

  13. Viera Lyn says:

    It’s one thing to support your team and hope that they can overachieve this season, but these comments clearly show how Wenger has pulled the wool over the eyes of a good number of Arsenal fans for so many years…people suggesting that we are close to winning the league, suggesting we have an above average defence, trying to say that Walcott is better than DeBruyne, saying that we are in better shape than City or Spurs in the final third and calling Giroud an unsung hero…things will never change as long as the fans are even more delusional than the manager

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