Two months ago I wrote a little blog about Arsenal’s upcoming games.
At the time we were 0 points and 0 goals from the first 3 games. Arsenal was a fairly depressing place.
My view was that Mikel Arteta had 10 games to save his job.
We had 6 home games and 4 away.
I would have expected us to win 6 out of 6 home games – 18 points. Although I did concede that we would likely draw one of them.
If football was easy to predict we would all be millionaires off acca’s. In my years of football betting I’ve barely won anything more than half a dozen four-folds.
Of the away games, I felt the minimum expectation would be a win, a draw and 2 defeats.
This took into account that the away games included a to Liverpool. We also faced Leicester City and Brighton – two places we had not exactly set alight.
In the blog, I said:
“That would leave Arsenal with 20 – 21 points from those 10 games.
Any less than 20 points, taking into account Arteta has the players he wants, we should be injury free and no European football distraction would be a failure.”
8 matches into the 10 game run we have the 20 points that I felt was the minimum requirement. So Arteta has passed my test.
I still do not expect much from a trip to Liverpool, but 3 points from Newcastle United should be in the bag. Even with Eddie Howe in charge.
That would see us take 23 points from the 10 game run. A total I am more than happy with.
It perhaps shows the swings and roundabouts of football that the disappointing home and away draw to Crystal Palace and away to Brighton are offset by great wins at home to Spurs and away to Leicester City.
Arteta’s critics will point to those draws as failures. But had the results been reversed – victories against Brighton & Palace, draws versus Leicester and Tottenham, would class it as failure?
After Newcastle we have a couple of tricky away trips to Mancheaster United and Everton. Neither team in great form but enither should be taken lightly.
We then have a run of winnable games up until the New Years – although games against West Ham, and away to Leeds United will not be easy.
Anything above 13 points in those 7 games will be a decent return.
Victory against Newcastle and 14 points from those 7 games takes us to 36 points from 20 games and on course to reach around 70 points for the season which should be enough for top 4 this year.
I am happy with where we are. It is something to build on.
The last 8 games have shown were are a side that will be challenging for top 4 this season.