Is Arsenal’s Champions League struggle a sign of things to come?
With Arsene Wenger dipping into his pockets to sign Alexis Sanchez, Calum Chambers and Mathieu Debuchy this summer Arsenal were expected to go well this term.
With those three players joining a squad boasting the likes of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Theo Walcott, Santi Cazorla and Aaron Ramsey there was every reason for Gunners fans to get excited about building on last year’s FA Cup triumph.
However, after two unbeaten games, questions are already being asked of Arsenal’s title credentials.
The Emirates outfit had to come from behind and rely on a 90th-minute winner from Ramsey to beat suspected relegation battlers Crystal Palace on day one and failed to use their midweek fixture to inspire confidence.
After a lacklustre display from the frontline – Olivier Giroud in particular – in Turkey Wenger’s men were lucky to escape with a draw against Besiktas in their final qualifying round match and now face a tough task to enter the competition proper.
In all probability Arsenal will get the home win they need to dispatch of Demba Ba and co and take their usual place in the group stages of Europe’s top tournament but unless improvements are made the north London outfit should be avoided for Champions League glory – even at long odds of 20/1.
Many Gooners have claimed that the FA Cup win of last year will propel the club onto bigger and better things and at 7/4 to win any major trophy it appears that the bookies agree with this sentiment.
However, further inspection shows that Arsenal are 4/11 to end the season empty handed – and no the Community Shield doesn’t count.
It is of course preposterously early to be making season predictions but on the evidence offered so far the top two trophies – Premier league and Champions League – look beyond Arsenal at present.
Another big signing before the window closes could see all that change but if not the 7/1 on them retaining the FA Cup could be the best way to go!
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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