Arsenal’s current chances in the title race
If anyone had claimed that Arsenal would be top of the Premier League in March at the start of the season, it would have been laughable.
Even the bookmakers thought so, with the Gunners handed odds of 51.00 by bookmakers to win the title back in August 2022.
Fast forward to the present and Arsenal now lead the way in the Premier League with 63 points, five clear ahead of second-placed Manchester City.
As at the time of writing, the Gunners hold a four-game winning streak and are playing with so much confidence and swagger that suggests that they could go all the way for their first league title in 19 years. It is no surprise that Arsenal now have odds of 1.90 to win the league by Bet365, a large contrast from what it was at the start of the season.
Despite their lead at the top though, many still believe City will defend their crown and we take a close-look at the title race and the likely possibilities before the end of the campaign?
Can Arsenal realistically win the title?
The answer to the above question is yes. Realistically, Arsenal can go all the way and their current form this season seems to agree with that claim. It must be said that the Gunners are no fluke this term and are deservedly at the top of the league.
Arsenal are excelling both in attack and defence and it is that consistency that has seen them remain top of the league for 75% of the campaign.
Stats show Arsenal deserve to be top of the league
A tally of 59 goals scored after 26 games played means only Manchester City (66) have scored more goals than the Gunners. In defence, 25 goals conceded means Mikel Arteta’s men have the second-joint best defence in the league so far, after Newcastle United, who have only conceded 17 goals, though with two games less played (24).
While Manchester City’s Erling Haaland might be strolling with the Golden Boot already, with 27 goals to his name, Arsenal’s goal spread has indeed been their biggest strength. For emphasis, the Gunners are not overly reliant on one player, which explains why they are the only side with three players to have scored 9+ goals so far this term in the league.
Martin Odegaard, Bukayo Saka and Gabriel Martinelli have nine, 10 and 11 goals respectively to their names and seem to complement each other. The possibility of goals coming from any side of the pitch adds some unpredictability to the Gunners’ frontline.
Perhaps the biggest thing that has improved under Arsenal this term is their mentality. Arsenal have come back from behind several times but their best one yet and possibility the best of the entire campaign went down last weekend. Two goals down at the half-hour mark, the Gunners came from behind to defeat Bournemouth 3-2, via a last-gasp effort from Reiss Nelson.
Arsenal were indeed expected to win but the manner in which they did after trailing by two goals in the second-half showed they are up for the fight this time around.
Will Manchester City overtake Arsenal?
With 12 games remaining until the end of the campaign, it is indeed a difficult question to answer but the simple answer is that the title is not in City’s hands at this point.
The Citizens need to win virtually every game from now until the end of the season and equally hope that Mikel Arteta’s men drop points as well.
It must be said that five points is not as ‘large’ as it seems in the grand context of things. A draw and a loss for Arsenal, with two wins for City in that time will easily close that gap.
When you further consider that many also expect the reigning champions to beat Arsenal at the Etihad, after beating them at the Emirates, it makes sense that many still back Pep Guardiola’s men as favorites, despite their current position.
At the moment, Bet365 have odds of 2.00 for City to win the league, meaning the bookmakers are giving them almost the same chance as Arsenal, despite being five points behind.
How the title-race could play out?
While many think the return leg between Manchester City and Arsenal could decide who wins the title, it would instead be a case of which side can claim more points against ‘lesser’ sides.
City don’t look as dominant as they have been in recent seasons and that could be something to worry about as the season approaches the business end.
Asides a crunch fixture against themselves, both City and Arsenal still have games against the likes of Liverpool, Chelsea, Brighton and West Ham – sides that could throw a spanner in the works.
Squad depth will also play a role in how the title race plays out, with City still in the Champions League and Arsenal also still in the Europa League as at the time of writing.
The reality once again is that Arsenal have a strong chance to win the league and it is more in their hands than anything else.