In his latest column, Paul Merson says these are worrying times for Arsenal but a top-four finish is still achievable and warns they cannot afford to lose at Chelsea on Wednesday, live on Sky Sports.
Arsenal were in pole position for Champions League football until suffering three back-to-back defeats to Crystal Palace, Brighton and Southampton which has left them three points off north London rivals Tottenham in fourth.
To make matters worse, the lack of depth at manager Mikel Arteta’s disposal has been laid bare by injuries to Kieran Tierney, Thomas Partey and Takehiro Tomiyasu, with Alexandre Lacazette now missing with Covid.
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But Merson feels there is a glimmer of hope for Arsenal ahead of what he calls a “make-or-break week” with games against Chelsea and Manchester United – the first of which is live on Sky Sports on Wednesday.
‘Worrying defeats for Arsenal’
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The problem with Arsenal’s recent losing run is not the defeats. It’s the teams they’ve been beaten by that’s the issue.
Crystal Palace, Brighton and Southampton – no disrespect to those three teams – but Arsenal should be beating them if they want that top-four finish. Palace was a hard game, the way it fell, and Brighton have had two great results, but they have played these teams at the right time. They played Brighton when they couldn’t win a game and also Southampton after a 6-0 thrashing.
That’s worrying for Arsenal.