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Arsenal: Is yet another season drifting away?

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Having watched Arsenal falter against yet another one of the top teams Premier League teams (albeit one who haven't proved much of a stumbling block in recent seasons), it is easy to see why people are crying out that it is the case of 'same old, same old' for Arsenal.

How bad is this season really turning out to be for a team that spent a good chunk of the it at the very summit of the table?

Well, a win against Wigan next weekend would put Arsenal into a first domestic cup final since the embarrassing defeat to Birmingham in the League Cup final of 2011. After the latest lackluster performance against Everton, a victory over a team that appears to be rejuvenated under the leadership of Uwe Rosler is far from a foregone conclusion.

If Wigan were to knock Arsenal out of the FA Cup, then there is a real possibility that this season could leave Gunners fans not only another year without silverware but also a genuine chance of not even making the Champions League, which for many years Arsene Wenger has seen as a 'trophy' in itself.

After the result at Goodison Park, the ball is firmly in Everton's court for the chase to get into the top four, even if their run-in is maybe the trickier of the two on paper.

So it's all doom and gloom at the Emirates Stadium then? Well, yes and no. I'm sure a good deal of Arsenal fans would have taken this very position if offered it after the defeat at home to Aston Villa on the very first day of the season.

The fact that the team have been able to compete at the top end of the table has been promising and the early form of Mezut Ozil and the lift that the signing gave to the squad are all big positives to take out of the season.

It is hard to argue that Arsenal have had to deal with a lot of injuries once again this season and is something that the club desperately needs to address if they are ever to challenge for the biggest honours again.

Losing Aaron Ramsey was of course a blow after he started the season in such blistering goalscoring form but the team have also suffered from yet another year of not having the defensive cover and drive that Abou Diaby can bring.

The biggest loss to the squad, though, was surely the injury to Theo Walcott. Not only did it take away his pace and his goals but it also meant that Ozil no longer had anyone running beyond him with the pace to trouble defences. Olivier Giroud has battled hard this season but isn't quite the world-class striker that Arsenal have needed to sustain a real push for the title.

Therein lies the real problem and what will really antagonise the fans regardless of how the rest of the season plays out. With Manchester United struggling to adapt to life under a new regime, Manchester City and Chelsea both having to adapt to changes at their clubs, this could and perhaps should have been Arsenal's season to take advantage.

As it is, it seems like it could be Liverpool - under the impressive leadership of Brendan Rodgers - that take advantage.

Arsenal can point to injuries all they want but the decision not to sign that world-class striker has cost them so very dear. How much more money it would have taken to prise Luis Suarez from Liverpool or Karim Benzema from Real Madrid at the start of the season surely would have been worth the amount goals they would have certainly provided. 

Yes, there will probably be more money to spend in the summer at Arsenal but world-class strikers don't tend to want to play in the Europa League. A top-four finish and a first trophy for nine years would be a step in the right direction and is still very much on the cards but so is another barren season and being pipped by Everton in the league.

The next few weeks are perhaps the most important for Wenger in his tenure to date. If all goes to plan, people will soon forgive and forget the performances against the top teams where Arsenal have been totally outclassed and give rise to the notion that this team is on the up and with a few good signings can get back to the very top.

If things go badly then perhaps it really is time for Wenger to walk away and give someone else the chance to bring former glories back to the club. 

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Topics:
Football
Arsenal
Premier League

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This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

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