Is Arsenal A Legitimate League Favourite?
We’ve all enjoyed riding the recent hot streak for Arsenal, and there’s truly been some great football of late. For fans of the Gunners, it’s been something of a pleasant surprise. Following the club’s frustrating inactivity during the summer, when many thought transactions needed to be made, Arsenal has jetted to the top of the Premier League standings, and has of course made a major acquisition along the way in Mesut Ozil. But is it time to start looking at Arsenal as the legitimate favourites in the League?
The betting odds, if that’s where you look for predictions, still say no. At betting.betfair.com, where fixed odds are provided for each team in the League (with regard to winning the whole thing), Arsenal are currently slated with the 3rd best chance, at 4/1 fixed odds. This is as compared to Chelsea, at 3/1, and Man City, at 9/4. However, this certainly puts Arsenal right atop the league in the eyes of the sports books, and it’s also worth noting that the club has passed Man U, who was initially given better odds.
Looking beyond betting odds, however, there’s great reason for optimism for Arsenal fans, as it looks as if the Gunners ought to be able to build on their lead. Currently atop the standings with a 5-0-1 record good for 15 points, Arsenal has several weeks coming up with matches in which they should be clear favourites. A glance at espnfc.com/fixtures will show you a very appealing schedule indeed. In Week 8 match against Norwich City in London, and a Week 9 contest on the road against Crystal Palace, which is off to a miserable start in the Premier League. Week 10 gets trickier, as Liverpool will visit Emirates Stadium, but even in this match one would have to call the Gunners favourites.
Of course, it’s always a stretch to look ahead and predict several wins in a row – we know anything can happen, and Arsenal could easily hit a cold spell. But with the club playing with such confidence, and having already blended so well with superstar acquisition Ozil – and with the schedule looking this favourable – it’s conceivable Arsenal could be off to a 9-1-1 start in Premier League play after a few more weeks.
Again, it’s reckless to take any such predictions too heavily, but the way Arsenal is playing, it seems safe to say that the club’s jump to the top of the standings is no fleeting blip. And with Man U and Man City both falling to win the other week, it’s quite clear that no one has found the same consistent form that Arsenal seems to have gained following its disappointing Week 1 loss.