Arsenal have been rampant in the Premier League ever since their opening day loss against Liverpool and Wenger is foreseeing a testing period ahead for the club as far their title credentials are concerned
Arsene Wenger’s Gunners have done away with their early season blues and gone on an unbeaten run in the Premier League, hence enabling them to keep pace with Manchester City at the top. The boss received a lot of stick from pundits and fans alike following his side’s opening day defeat to Liverpool and hardly three months later all of it has been forgotten and Arsenal are flirting with title ambitions once again.
However if two decades of Wengers’ tenure at Arsenal were to reveal anything, it’s that the month of November has been the least friendly to the Gunners during the course of a Premier League season. The eleventh month of the year has yielded the least number of average points for the Gunners according to a data collecting their monthly total across Wenger’s two decades at the club.
With an average of at least 2 points per game in other months, Arsenal have managed only 1.59 points per game in the month of November which explains the air of caution among their supporters during their resounding 4-1 thumping of Sunderland during the weekend.
This November, Arsenal welcome North London rivals Tottenham Hotspur and face Manchester United at Old Trafford in a matter of weeks that could have quite an impact on the standings at the top of the league table.
Wenger deflected talk of the ‘November hoo-doo’ and admitted that the crunch clashes during the month could easily establish or destroy Arsenal’s title credentials. Apart from their Premier League commitments the Gunners also face a visit from Paris St Germain in the Champions League and a home encounter against Southampton in the League Cup quarterfinal.
Riding on a 14-game unbeaten streak, Wenger was cautious in his approach towards questions enquiring about Arsenal’s title charge. He said,”We now have difficult games coming up, with a difficult November, so by the end of November we will know more about ourselves.”
“The desire is there and the mentality is great, though. There is great togetherness, we have quality as well, so they are good ingredients,” he said. “But we have to show that we can do it week in and week out.”
Speaking about the resounding victory over the Black Cats during the weekend the boss was quoted as saying,”The win shows our belief that we can bounce back from a disappointing result last week. We also showed we can bounce back in a game when it doesn’t go our way, so overall I believe that it can convince the team that we playing the right way.”
Is Alexis Sanchez key to Arsenal abolishing their November hoo-doo?
Arsenal’s journey in a Premier League season has almost appeared cyclical in recent years. They kick off with a shaky start to the campaign followed by a rampant run that potentially sets up a title challenge before a poor patch of form midway through the season has them ultimately settling for a top four finish.
Wenger will admonish the Gunners of any complacency going into the crunch 30 days ahead and will look up to Alexis Sanchez to lead by example.
The Chilean put up a marvelous display against Sunderland during their 4-1 thumping at the Stadium of Light and has been consistently working his socks off to deliver each game for the North Londoners. Now sitting in 2nd spot in the goal-scoring charts with 7 strikes to his name, Sanchez will once again be required to put on his scoring boots against the likes of Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur in-order to persist his side’s golden run of form.
With 8 goals and 7 assists to his name in all competitions, the 27-year-old hitman will be the one to watch out for opponents knocking on Arsenal’s door this season.