It is virtually a two-horse race for the Premier League title at the moment with Arsenal five points clear of Manchester City after 27 matches. While Manchester City has overturned such deficits to win the title in the past and might well do so once again, Arsenal is looking an inspired team this time around.
Mikel Arteta’s side have been in the pole position throughout the season so far. Thus, Arsenal supporters have every reason to harbour dreams of winning their first league title in almost two decades. There are three main reasons why the Gunners deserve to be the champions this season.
Quite a few youngsters in spectacular form
Arsenal swept the London Football awards recently, with each of Arteta, Martin Ødegaard, Bukayo Saka, and Aaron Ramsdale winning awards in their respective categories. It was a true recognition of the astounding form of a few Arsenal players this season. Ødegaard and Saka have been two outstanding players for the Gunners this season. Ødegaard has 10 goals and six assists from 26 league matches, while Saka has 10 goals and nine assists from 27. The Norwegian playmaker has played in a more advanced role and made a habit of scoring goals by entering into the opposition penalty box.
Saka has probably been the most improved English footballer in the last few seasons along with Phil Foden. The Arsenal winger has surpassed the international teammate with his performances this season. His ability to cut inside from the left flank consistently has troubled most of opposition defenders. He also has the pace and skills to unsettle even the strongest of defenses.
In addition to that, William Saliba and Gabriel have been solid at the back. Saliba has been very good in his debut season for the Gunners. He suffered a dip in form midway into the season, but seems to have gotten over it.
Arsenal filling the void created by Gabriel Jesus’ injury
Jesus started the season well for the Gunners and made the striker role his own. He scored five goals and registered five assists in 15 league matches before his injury at the FIFA World Cup.
However, to their credit, the Gunners have replaced him in exemplary fashion. As mentioned earlier, Ødegaard has ventured into the opposition penalty box more often. Along with Leandro Trossard’s signing in January, the two have given a boost to their attack. Trossard has played as a false 9 at times and has swapped positions with left winger Gabriel Martinelli.
Martinelli has also become more direct in his approach, as his place in the starting eleven was in danger. However, he has scored goals with headers from inside the box since then. Fringe players like Reiss Nelson have also chipped in with vital goals. This shows that there continues to be many sources of goals for the Gunners.
Showing great resilience to score late goals to win matches
Every champion has to endure and overcome tough moments and prove it worthy of the title over the course of the season. Arsenal has been no exception either, as they won against Aston Villa by scoring a couple of goals during added time. They have also overturned a two-goal deficit to beat Bournemouth.
Arteta’s men thus proved their mettle, as Manchester City has repeatedly done during Pep Guardiola’s tenure. They have already shown that the pressure of being table-toppers sit well with them and will now have to perform well in their monumental match against Manchester City in April, which could very well be the Premier League title decider.