Gunner Thoughts

Sunday’s Results Deal Huge Blow to Gunners

In general, I try to keep this blog focused on Arsenal and the aspects of their play and things that are within their control. However, given the position they have put themselves in this year, they have not been entirely in control of their own destiny for some time now. This means that we, as fans are left spending days watching the results that happen around Arsenal had left hoping that other teams can come through for us.

A day after Arsenal fans may have felt lucky to scrape a mandatory 3 points from West Ham, they will have been fixated on Sunday’s matches to see how Chelsea and Manchester United, 4th and 5th place respectively, faired against Everton and Manchester City. If both loss, Arsenal would be 5 points behind Chelsea and only 2 points behind Manchester United with a game in hand.

That’s the life of a supporter. Even if it’s small things to hold out for, even if the chances are slim, a supporter will cling to the idea that ‘anything can happen’. This makes Sunday’s results a little more daunting. Chelsea strolled to a 4-0 win over Everton and United managed to comfortably win 1-0 against their Manchester rival – City. Even with City dominating possession (72%), City only managed 7 shots (4 on goal) and United looked relatively comfortable dealing with it.

Neither result will be what Arsenal fans were holding out for and it is a blow to Arsenal’s attempt to put together a late run to get themselves back into European competition. Suddenly, Arsenal sit 8 points behind Chelsea and 5 points behind United with Arsenal’s game in hand against 2nd place Manchester City – away.

While 5 and 8 points are not insurmountable, given that Arsenal have 10 games left to play this year, the bleak outlook comes from who those games remain against:

Arsenal Remaining PL Schedule:

  • Manchester City – Away
  • Brighton – Away
  • Southampton – Away (PP)
  • Norwich – Home
  • Wolverhampton Wolves – Away
  • Leicester City – Home
  • Tottenham – Away
  • Liverpool – Home
  • Aston Villa – Away
  • Watford – Home

This compared to Chelsea and United’s remaining schedules:

Chelsea Remaining PL Schedule:

  • Aston Villa – Away
  • Manchester City – Home (PP)
  • West Ham – Away
  • Watford – Home
  • Crystal Palace – Away
  • Sheffield Utd – Away
  • Norwich – Home
  • Liverpool – Away
  • Wolverhampton Wolves – Home

Manchester United Remaining PL Schedule:

  • Tottenham – Away
  • Sheffield Utd – Home (PP)
  • Brighton – Away
  • Bournemouth – Home
  • Aston Villa – Away
  • Southampton – Home
  • Crystal Palace – Away
  • West Ham – Home
  • Leicester – Away

There are certainly a few games that could present problems for Chelsea and United, but it is easy to see why fans had high hopes that City could continue their dominance and for that chance that Everton could continue their run of better results under Ancelotti. Arsenal are now looking at the need to find ways to win games against City, Liverpool, Tottenham, Leicester, and Wolves with limited room for error.

It’s a tough road ahead for Arsenal and one that starts Wednesday against Manchester City.

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