Wenger’s men looking convincing for the title

Wenger’s men looking convincing for the title

Arsene Wenger has come a long way in an incredibly ‘short’ period of time. From the famed ‘we will be back stronger next season’ to the more convincing ‘we are confident and have a strong team’ this season. Time and again, Wenger has been the defensive wall that took the egg splatter for his team of what could only be described as highly paid underachievers. Now, with the renaissance of Ramsey and the addition of Flamini’s steel and Ozil’s flair, Arsenal’s midfield is definitely their strong point.

Rolling back time one year back, no one would have envisaged Wenger making a predominantly attacking triple substitution- Walcott, Rosicky and Flamini- against a tough side like Everton with 69 minutes on the clock- a true sign of hunger that has been reignited in the ever-so-often sulking Frenchman by the phenomenal run of form exhibited by his players. Despite the triple substitution, Arsenal still ended the game 1-1, despite being second best to Everton in virtually majority of the game. The result may favour Everton more than Arsenal, however Wenger will not be too disappointed with the five point gap he has at the summit over second-placed Merseysiders, Liverpool, heading into the festive period.

While many critics are eager to poke holes into the Gunner’s side, waiting for what has been perceived as their inevitable downfall, credit must go to the Gunners. They have played with real intent this season, with their often flambouyant nature bearing results. The Gunners have also come up tops against Liverpool, Tottenham, Dortmund and Napoli thus far and have been looking fierce in every outing. And they have achieved so in the absence of Oxlade-Chamberlain and Podolski, with Walcott only recently coming back from injury.

Arsenal now have a plethora of midfielders to choose from, with versatility a common factor in almost all their players. The defensive back four seem to have settled will into the season, with each of them contributing significantly to the 11 goals they have conceded in 15 games thus far. What Wenger must now invest in is a goalkeeper to keep Wojciech Szczęsny on his toes- Viviano does not seem to offer much competition for the Polish stopper. Upfront, want away striker Nicklas Bendtner may have bagged his first league goal for Arsenal this season, but still has his heart on a move away from Emirates. With Giroud and the versatility of Walcott and Podolski to rely on, Wenger desperately needs to dip into his treasure chest and throw some cash one more time- this time on an established and consistent striker.

In the Champions League however, Arsenal shot themselves in the foot. Going into the last game versus Napoli in pole position to qualify as group leaders, Arsenal were dealt a major scare as a third goal in Naples with no response would have culminated in their elimination from the competition altogether! However, they had to settle for second spot, facing the possibility of a huge tie in the last 16 nockout stages.

It remains to be seen whether the Gunners will carry on their formidable form throughout the season, or collapse in typical Arsenal fashion.  Next up, Manchester City.

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