Three reasons Arsenal won’t win the title this year
Can Arsenal win the Premier League title this year? Here are three reasons why the Gunners will fall short again
Same issues persist
Sometimes it feels like Arsene Wenger can’t do anything right. No sooner had the Arsenal manager secured the signing of a supposed commanding midfielder in the shape of Granit Xhaka, then some former Gunners players were demanding a new centre-half and striker. We’ll have to wait and see if Xhaka is the answer to Wenger’s centre-midfield conundrum in the coming season but on paper at least, the Arsenal manager has one half of a decent spine with Petr Cech in goal and the Swiss star in midfield. Laurent Koscielny and Gabriel Paulista can do a decent job at centre-half but neither are the big name Arsenal supporters crave – and need. Up front, Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez will be creating chances for the erratic Olivier Giroud. Of all the positions Arsenal must improve, a proven goal-scorer is perhaps most pressing if a sustained title challenge is to become a reality.
Guardiola and Mourinho
Arsenal’s task has got a lot harder this year. Pep Guardiola has been more subdued than his adversary Jose Mourinho in the summer transfer window so far, but there is still time for Manchester City to get some big deals over the line. Manchester United, on the other hand, have added some serious quality to their side thanks to the signings of Eric Bailly, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Henrikh Mkhitaryan. The two Manchester clubs will be challengers this year after a rare off-season. Chelsea and Liverpool are still rebuilding but Antonio Conte and Jurgen Klopp are managers with title-winning pedigree. And, of course, there’s last year’s golden clubs Leicester City and Tottenham Hotspur. Looking at how their rivals have improved, Wenger may have missed his chance for a final Premier League crown.
Do the Arsenal supporters believe any more?
Wenger faced growing criticism from his own supporters at the Emirates Stadium towards the end of the 2015/16 season. It was an unprecedented level of dissent since Wenger took over at the north London club. While his critics will point to a lack of success in the Premier League and the Champions League since the infamous Invincibles side, there is a sense that even his staunchest fans are growing weary of defending Wenger. His legacy remains intact. But do Arsenal supporters really believe they’re any closer to another title? One suspects not.