We will fight to the finish: Wenger
Four draws in five league games, three of them at the Emirates, have left Arsenal's title hopes hanging by a thread and they face another tough hurdle on Wednesday when they visit neighbours Tottenham Hotspur.sports Updated: Apr 19, 2011 01:08 IST
Four draws in five league games, three of them at the Emirates, have left Arsenal's title hopes hanging by a thread and they face another tough hurdle on Wednesday when they visit neighbours Tottenham Hotspur.
Arsenal's decline has been stark in the last two months and defeat at White Hart Lane would be the final nail in their Premier League coffin.
It all started to go wrong when they were beaten by Birmingham City in the League Cup final on Feb. 27 - though throwing away a 4-0 lead to draw 4-4 at Newcastle United earlier in the month was also something of a pyschological hammer blow.
They were then knocked out of the FA Cup by Manchester United and the Champions League by Barcelona.
In the league they drew 0-0 at home with Sunderland, 2-2 at West Bromwich Albion, 0-0 at home with Blackburn and, after beating Blackpool, suffered the heartache of gifting Liverpool a 1-1 Emirates draw after 11 minutes of stoppage time. That result on Sunday left them six points behind leaders Manchester United and only two ahead of Chelsea, who beat West Bromwich Albion 3-1 away on Saturday to restore their hopes of a top-two finish with six games to go.
With Manchester City seven points adrift of Arsenal in fourth, Arsene Wenger's side look unlikely to miss out on a top-three finish but their trophy drought looks set to go into a seventh year.
"We are maybe jaded a bit physically, you could see that some players have played around 40-45 games and we lacked a bit of a change of pace," Wenger said.
"We will have to give everything until the last game of the season and see if it is our year or not."
They still have to play United at the Emirates and Alex Ferguson's team also have to play Chelsea so everything is far from settled but Wenger has a real job on his hands to slam the brakes on the decline, starting on Wednesday where Tottenham and their fans would be delighted to ensure it does not happen.