It looks like ages since Arsenal final got here this near locking up a top-four end within the Premier League. The switch information round Arsenal has turn out to be very optimistic within the final couple of months as Champions League soccer beckons.
Mikel Arteta’s males have picked themselves up from a dreadful begin to the 2021/22 season and at the moment are main candidates to win a keenly-contested top-four battle.
Bukayo Saka’s first-half objective handed the Gunners a 1-0 win away to Aston Villa forward of March’s worldwide break, sustaining their three-point lead on closest followers Tottenham Hotspur.
Sixth-placed Manchester United are nonetheless sniffing round, however a four-point hole, coupled with a sport in hand, provides Arsenal a stable lead heading into the enterprise finish of the season.
However Arsenal’s April schedule gained’t be variety as they’ve a few high-profile Premier League fixtures ready within the wings.
Monday’s all-London encounter between Crystal Palace and Arsenal at Selhurst Park will kick issues off for Arteta’s aspect after the worldwide break.
Undefeated of their final 4 Premier League London derbies (W3, D1), the Gunners additionally boast a powerful 94% unbeaten ratio throughout their earlier 16 league visits to Palace (W8, D7, L1).
Brighton & Hove Albion
Arsenal will play host to bottom-half Brighton & Hove Albion solely 5 days after their cross-town journey to Selhurst Park for one more must-win fixture.
March’s worldwide break got here to Graham Potter’s rescue, handing the under-pressure Seagulls supervisor a fortnight to rally his troops following a dismal six-game shedding streak within the Premier League.
If the Gunners have been to land their first top-four end since 2015/16, Brighton’s go to to the Emirates is a chance they can’t afford to move on.
Ex-Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher said in his latest interview with Sky Sports activities’ Overlap that Arsenal might have ‘an enormous downside’ if their top-four pursuit collapses.
An thrilling mid-April fixture will pit Arteta’s high-flyers in opposition to mid-table Southampton, who had skilled a dip in kind forward of the worldwide break.
The Saints have misplaced their final three Premier League matches by an mixture rating of 8-2, derailing their probabilities of claiming their first top-half end since 2016/17.
Furthermore, the Gunners have gained each earlier Premier League conferences with Ralph Hasenhuttl’s aspect, scoring three objectives apiece whereas conceding only one in return.
Arsenal’s go to to St Mary’s Stadium on April 16 will function a warm-up conflict forward of their blockbuster match in opposition to fierce cross-town rivals Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.
Thomas Tuchel’s males have rediscovered their type of late, racking up a five-game profitable streak within the Premier League whereas making it to the FA Cup semi-finals.
Regardless of Chelsea’s high-flying kind, the Gunners have the latest H2H file firmly on their aspect after going unbeaten of their final 4 top-flight conferences with the Blues (W2, D2).
The newest chapter of the long-standing rivalry between Arsenal and Man United will happen on the Emirates on April 23, with automated Champions League qualification up for grabs.
With solely 4 factors separating the edges in the mean time, the Pink Devils are nonetheless very a lot hopeful of beating the Londoners to a coveted fourth-place end.
Subsequently, the upcoming showdown within the capital might show decisive for each side’ ambitions to achieve Europe’s elite competitors subsequent season.