This weekend’s focus is on Tottenham and Liverpool for two very simple reasons. If Liverpool win, they will strengthen their positions to chase and eventually win the Premier a league title for the first time in a generation. A win for Spurs, who have surprisingly lost on their visit to Vicarage road two weeks ago, would mean that they will get back to the top four and will keep alive their hopes to chase for the title. A looks for Spurs would probably mean that they would need to settle for top 4 finish this season.
It is Arsenal, the team that those who pretend to understand the Premier League have to watch carefully, this weekend, however. The Unai Emery led team travels to Newcastle to play the troubled Magpies, who have won only only point from the last four games. The Rafael Benitez team is capable to win against any team and they can frustrate Arsenal. At the same time, this fixture would become something like a starting point for the Gunners to silence their critics. Why?
Arsenal in the top 4 in October!?
After their visit to Newcastle the Gunners play in the UEFA Europa League against Volska Poltava at Emirates, a game which they should be able to win with some of their reserves. Three days later Everton comes to Emirates and despite that the Toffees are tough opponent, there is no reason to project that Arsenal would not win this fixture.
Three days later the Unai Emery’s team welcomes Brentford in the third round of the Football League Cup, another fixture which allows some rotation in Gunners squad. Three days later Arsenal have another home game against Watford. No matter what would Hornets do this weekend at home against Manchester United, a win for Arsenal against them on Emirates would not surprise anyone.
Another UEFA Europa League game follows, this time a visit to Quarabag FK, follows by a short trip to West London where Arsenal play against the newly promoted Fulham. A week later the Gunners welcome Leicester City at home before visiting Selhurst Park to play against Crystal Palace . The Unai Emery’s side has also have another UEFA Europa League midweek game, a trip to Lisbon where they play against Sporting.
It is hard to win all those games, this never happens even to the teams who usually become champions. However, if Unai Emery manages Arsenal’s games very carefully, if he give a priority to the Premier League and with a bit of luck, it is possible for the Gunners to win all 18 point from their next 6 games. I would not depreciate any of the team they are about to face, but none of those is a likely top 6 team, with one possible exception – Everton, who visit Emirates.
The positives in Arsenal’s game!?
On their visit to Cardiff, won 2:3 by the Gunners, for the first time played with Alexandre Lacazette an P. E. Aubameyang two very talented strikers who have so far looked like they cannot play together. It is a bit of a concern that Arsenal’s defence has conceded 2 goals, but they have managed to win the game after D. Ward’s equalizer for Cardiff City in 70th minute.
Granit Xhaka and the young Matteo Guendouzi are very likely to form a formidable partnership in the Gunners midfield and if they manage to control and improve the Arsenal’s defensive performances, this will be a big boost for the whole team and the Gunners’ defence in particular.
Finally, Unai Emery has been criticized for demanding his players to play out from the back and to have as much possession as they can. However, this is a style that only big teams can use and be successful. So, the Emery’s directions is clear. He does not want to waste time on managing an average top 6 football club. He wants to bring Arsenal as closet the top as possible and based on his previous managerial record, he obviously knows how to do this.