Arsene Wenger has never needed a win more than he does against Aston Villa having endured one of the toughest weeks of his increasingly difficult Arsenal tenure.
A 3-1 reverse at the hands of Bayern Munich compounded Blackburn’s dismissing them from the FA Cup. Couple this with the facts that Bradford dumped them out of the Capital One Cup and the team are a staggering 21 points behind one-time rivals Manchester United in the Premier League, then it’s easy to see why Gunners’ fans are already facing up to the prospect of their trophy-drought going on.
It’s fair to argue that those who consider eight years without a trophy as some kind of disaster are being melodramatic, but to see Wenger subject to so much pressure makes you wonder if the Frenchman will ever hoist more silverware for the north Londoners.
According to the bookies, he probably won’t.
Ladbrokes are offering a price of 4/6 that Arsenal’s next trophy is won beyond the 2016/17 campaign and, with supporter frustrations elevating by the week, it’s almost impossible to imagine the 63-year-old still in his position four years from now.
Judging from the market, it appears that it’s next season or bust for the three-time Premier League winner.
The layers go 17/10 about Arsenal’s name being engraved on a trophy next term, but there are no encouraging signs from the current crop of players that they’ll be in the hunt for winner’s medals a year from now which makes this an awful bet.
The pickings get rapidly steeper beyond next season, with 11/2 being the bounty for the Gunners’ next trophy to come in the 2014/15 campaign, while a monstrous 16/1 says they’ll have no joy until 2015/16.
At 4/6, there’ll be few who aren’t tempted to have a wager on the Gunners not winning anything for another four seasons which, lined up next to the other offerings, is an exceptional price indeed.
All odds and markets accurate as of publication’s time and date