Friday, June 22, 2018

Difficult Summer Gives Way to Positive Outlook

September 17, 2013 by  
Filed under Premier League

After a summer of discontent at Arsenal, we are now four games into the new season and things are beginning to look much better, with another top-four finish for the Gunners looking a distinct possibility in the latest Premier League betting odds.

Of course, it is very early days and no-one should be getting carried away with three wins from the first four games, but there are now plenty of positives at the Emirates – something that is welcomed after a difficult off-season and that disappointing home reverse on the first day against Aston Villa.

Boss, Arsene Wenger, left the stadium that day with boos ringing in his ears but – credit where it is due – the Frenchman appears to have turned it around since, and the Gunners sit well placed in the early Premier League table.

Despite three back-to-back wins domestically and qualification for the group stage of the Champions League once again, the deadline-day signing of a truly world class player, in the shape of Mesut Ozil, has been the season highlight for many fans so far.

The deal was even more welcome after a summer of failed transfers and his instant impact in the 3-1 win at Sunderland was very promising. Clearly, the German will be able to quickly adapt to the English game and has quality in abundance. He can make things happen in the final third and is likely to be stand-out performer for Wenger’s side as the season progresses.

However, Ozil is only one of several plus points to emerge in the opening month of the campaign, with Olivier Giroud and Aaron Ramsey also hogging the limelight.

Giroud had a hit-and-miss debut season in 2012-13 but he has begun this term in devastating goalscoring form. His winner in the north London derby was an exquisite finish, while he has weighed in with four other important goals.

Ramsey, meanwhile, turned in probably his best all-round display at the Stadium of Light, capping it with two goals from midfield.

Wenger says the former Cardiff man’s improvement has been significant and, if he can continue to play as well as this, then the doubters in the live football commentary may be forced to eat their words and accept the manager’s assessment that there were enough quality players at the club after all, without the need for several new faces.

So, after what was undoubtedly a worrying summer and a dismal opening-day defeat, there is plenty to be happy about at Arsenal. Four games do not make a season, of course, but the initial platform is now in place to build a very successful campaign.

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