John Barnes predicts where Arsenal are going to finish this season
John Barnes has his say on Arsenal's Premier League hopes this season
John Barnes is tipping Arsenal to finish between “sixth and eighth” in the Premier League table this season.
The north London side are attempting to break back into the top four this term as they aim to improve upon their disappointing eighth-placed finish in the top flight last season.
Mikel Arteta’s side failed to win a trophy last term and the Gunners have fallen short of challenging for a Champions League qualification spot in recent seasons.
Arsenal, who won their first game of the season against Norwich on Saturday, have not lifted the Premier League title since 2004 and their main focus this term will be trying to break back into the European spots.
The Gunners enjoyed a busy summer transfer window as they made a number of key signings, bringing in the likes of Ben White, Nuno Tavares, Martin Odegaard, Albert Sambi Lokonga and Aaron Ramsdale.
However, the north London side have made a stuttering start to the new campaign and lost their opening three games in the Premier League before last weekend’s win over Norwich City.
Former Liverpool FC and England winger Barnes reckons that the top four will simply be out of reach for Arsenal this season, but he feels that they could have the potential to beat last term’s eighth-placed finish.
Speaking in an interview quoted by Metro, Barnes said: “Of course they can finish outside the European places because they did last year and they haven’t started particularly well.
“It was a big result against Norwich City because as much as they should be beating Norwich, having lost their first three games, their confidence was low.
“Hopefully that can kick start their season because they’re a good side and they have good young players.
“I’d like to see Emile Smith-Rowe and Bukayo Saka be more prominent this season as you don’t want your young English players playing in a struggling side because their confidence may suffer.
“Arsenal won’t break into the top four. They should feel that they can finish between sixth and eighth, but it depends on their confidence over the next few weeks and the results they pick up.”
The Gunners have come eighth for the last two seasons running, and they have not finished in the top four since the 2015-16 season, when they ended up second and behind champions Leicester City when Arsene Wenger was still in charge.
Arsenal will travel to Burnley in the Premier League on Saturday as they look to make it back-to-back wins in the top flight.