The last few days have seen several boosts and The Arsenal, on and off the pitch and it would be fair to say that the majority of us will be relishing the prospect of playing West Ham, and potentially staying top of the Premier League into week 2. Of course, it is early days, but it is hard not to be feeling positive after the last 5 days since we opened the season at Craven Cottage.
A competent, disciplined performance, signs of flair and patterns of play of the training pitch, bearing fruit, two new signings looking more than settled and contributing significantly. Add to that the expected but long-awaited announcement that our skipper and talisman, Pierre Emerick Aubameyang is staying put. Not only is he staying but his words seem to add the words of the new arrivals and the existing players that Arteta, his vision and his ideas are central to his desire to extend and his belief that big things are possible in the 3 additional years. As Aubameyang suggested; it is time for everyone to respect Arsenal.
There are also signs that our new ‘Manager’ will be ruthless in his approach with his squad but also adaptable and willing to change his mind. The decision to sell Martinez shows the one side and the public backing of Maitland-Niles and Holding, players previously earmarked for sale, illustrate the other.
There is some to go yet in the transfer window but will more players exiting for cash, or future cash, and there is a strong belief that at one of two more might join those who are already arrived. Therefore, whilst Arsenal look strong and confident now, they might be looking even more so in a month’s time. It will be interesting where The Gunners are in the Nevada sports betting, and whether their odds continue to shorten up to the end of the window, in relation to now and in relation to their peers.
I have a sneaky feeling that if Arteta’s team continue to progress the odds for Arsenal to win the Premier League Title might shorten, but is we are honest, at this stage it is Champions League places we should be eyeing. Without kicking a ball, Man City are firm favourites and Liverpool despite last season’s dominance are some way off as second favourites. Obviously, Liverpool’s shaky defensive display at home to Leeds and City’s spending, will have impacted this reversal in betting and it is Chelsea’s seemingly impressive spending on new player that has them as third favourites.
However, it is the fact that Man United are fourth favourites that intrigues me, particularly as at around 16/1 there are deemed twice as likely as Arsenal who you can bet on at around 33/1. Call me biased and overly optimistic but I sense Arsenal under Arteta and finally addressing flaws and buying what the squad needs, whilst United are still acting like the spoiled kid with the most pocket money, in the sweet shop on the way to school. Buying things that are bright, shiny and expensive, because you can afford them is not always a route to success.
Obviously we will all know more when we see City and more interestingly perhaps for us Gooners, United play, but Arsenal have already move way ahead of Spurs in the betting and I wonder whether come the end of the transfer window is we will not be closer or even more favoured with the bookies than Man United.
Passionate fifty-something Arsenal supporter who has been making the journey to N5 regularly since the early 1980s – although his first game was in 1976. Always passionate when talking about The Arsenal, Dave decided to send a guest blog to Gunnersphere in the summer of 2011 and has not stopped writing about the Gunners since.
He set up his own site – 1 Nil Down 2 One Up – in February 2012, which he moved on in 2016 to concentrate on freelance writing and building Gunners Town, which he launched with Paul in 2014.
The objective of GT was to be new and fresh and to give a platform for likeminded passionate Arsenal fans wishing to write about their team. Dave still of course, writes for the site himself and advises the ever-changing writing crew.