Arsenal's season defining month starts tonight

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It seems unfathomable that Arsenal were on the brink of revolt just two months ago.

No money had been spent in a frustrating transfer window and the fans at the Emirates had just witnessed their club humbled by Aston Villa at home on the opening day of the season.

Since then, Arsene Wenger has tripled Arsenal's transfer record with the signing of Mesut Ozil and the Gunners have won 11 out of the 12 subsequent games.

The mood around Arsenal's north London home couldn't be more different from the one that forced fans in to singing "spend some f***ing money" at Wenger, who's position at the club had never looked so fragile.

Now Arsenal are the pace-setters in the Premier League and fans are eager to see the 64-year-old sign a contract extension.

But it remains a fact that Arsenal are yet to be truly tested in either the Premier League or Champions League.

Of all their rivals for the title, they have only faced Tottenham at home. And in their Champions League group they are yet to face their main challengers for qualification Borussia Dortmund.

That will all change tonight, however, as last season's runners-up play at the Emirates to start a run of six games that will eliminate any doubt about whether they are title contenders or not.

If they finish these six games undefeated, no one can question Arsenal's title credentials. Any more than three losses and they are arguably back to where they were on day one.

Here we take a look at their six key games: 

Borussia Dortmund (Home) - Champions League

If Arsenal beat Dortmund tonight then they will have all but sealed qualification to the next round. Tough away ties against Klopp's men and Napoli lie in wait so a loss will put them right in the mix of the Group of Death.

Crystal Palace (Away) - Premier League

Crystal Palace represent the easiest tie for Arsene Wenger to navigate over the next month. However, his last visit in 2005 saw Arsenal held to a 1-1 draw. Historically not a happy hunting ground for Arsenal.

Chelsea (Home) - Capital One Cup

The Capital One Cup represents Arsenal's best hope of breaking their nine year trophy drought but a tough tie against Jose Mourinho's men stands between them and the quarter-finals. If they're eliminated their chances of winning silverware lessen dramatically.

Liverpool (Home) - Premier League

Arsene Wenger may live to rue his failed pursuit of Luis Suarez in the summer as he faces the Uruguayan for the first time since he bid for the striker. Liverpool look strong and are likely to pose a threat for a top four place in the Premier League. A win is vital.

Manchester United (Away) - Premier League

So often the sight of Arsenal's demise, Wenger returns to Old Trafford in the hope of taking advantage of David Moyes' poor start. Win and they could effectively end United's title defence. Lose and it puts the Premier League champions right back in the mix.

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