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Arsenal Premier League Title Contenders
09 October 2018, 09:57
Arsenal Premier League Title Contenders
charnsitr / Shutterstock.com

Arsenal started the 2018/19 Premier League season with two defeats.  The losses came against two of the biggest clubs in the Premier League, Manchester City and Chelsea.  Despite the fact the defeats were against big clubs, new Gunners boss Unai Emery came in for immediate criticism.

The main focus of the criticism was against Emery’s tactics and how he changed Arsenal’s style of play too quickly.  The former Sevilla and Paris Saint-Germain manager prefers to play with a high pressing game and this differs from the approach of previous Arsenal boss, Arsene Wenger.

With no points on the board from their opening two games, Emery did not deviate from the plan and having played 8 games, it now appears to be producing dividends.

Prior to the second international break of the season, Arsenal delivered the best performance of the campaign as they took Fulham apart at Craven Cottage.  The Gunners ran out 5-1 winners and fully deserved their big win.  In truth, it could have been more and although Fulham went in level at 1-1, Arsenal were clearly the superior team.

Their attacking play was brilliant and the third goal scored by Aaron Ramsey, who had been on the pitch a matter of seconds, was sensational.

Many onlookers will point to the fact Arsenal have defeated only one team in top half of table this season and that was Watford 2-0 at home towards the end of September.  The clean sheet in that game was only Arsenal’s second in the Premier League this season and the defence is one area of the team which still looks like it needs improving.

Of the top seven teams in the Premier League, only Bournemouth have conceded more goals than Arsenal.  However, no one can deny Arsenal have been good to watch going forward and their 5 goals at Fulham on the weekend means only Manchester City have scored more in the Premier League.

Alexandre Lacazette has been in fine form and looks ready to push for the top goal scorer honours in the Premier League this season.  Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored off the bench against Fulham and the pacey forward looks set to make a good partnership with Lacazette but also play his part in rotation with the French striker.

New signing Lucas Torreira asserted himself in central midfield and its clear the Uruguayan is going to be key for Arsenal in that area of the pitch this season.  Too often the Gunners have had a soft centre in recent years and that will need to be rectified if Arsenal are to mount a serious title challenge.

With Leicester City and Crystal Palace to come before the meeting with Liverpool, wins against the Foxes and the Eagles would be huge.  It would make the match with Liverpool one which has a big impact on the title race.  It is a title race Arsenal fans will hope they can join this season.

OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
1. Manchester City 20 8 6 2 0 21 3 18
2. Chelsea FC 20 8 6 2 0 18 5 13
3. Liverpool FC 20 8 6 2 0 15 3 12
4. Arsenal 18 8 6 0 2 19 10 9
5. Tottenham 18 8 6 0 2 15 7 8
6. Bournemouth 16 8 5 1 2 16 12 4
7. Wolverhampton 15 8 4 3 1 9 6 3
8. Manchester United 13 8 4 1 3 13 14 -1
9. Watford FC 13 8 4 1 3 11 12 -1
10. Leicester City 12 8 4 0 4 14 12 2
11. Everton FC 12 8 3 3 2 13 12 1
12. Burnley FC 8 8 2 2 4 10 12 -2
13. Brighton 8 8 2 2 4 9 13 -4
14. Crystal Palace 7 8 2 1 5 5 9 -4
15. West Ham 7 8 2 1 5 8 13 -5
16. Southampton 5 8 1 2 5 6 14 -8
17. Fulham FC 5 8 1 2 5 9 21 -12
18. Huddersfield 3 8 0 3 5 4 17 -13
19. Newcastle Utd 2 8 0 2 6 6 13 -7
20. Cardiff City 2 8 0 2 6 4 17 -13

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