Ray Parlour has insisted that while Arsenal still have some defensive problems, the north London side can make the top four and qualify for the Champions League this season.
Boasting their worst start to a Barclays Premier League season in over 50 years, Arsenal are currently 15th in the table and have collected just seven points from seven games.
The Gunners are eight points behind fourth-placed Newcastle, but Parlour believes that if they sort out their back line, they can catch up to the bigger teams.
“When they have got the ball they are fine, because they are great going forward, but they just need that little bit more discipline when they are defending,” he told Goal.com.
“If they can do that then they will definitely be up there in the top four or top five positions come the end of the season.
“I am just hoping that they can get it sorted out on the training field. I am sure Arsene Wenger will have noticed that and will be working on it as we speak but it is frustrating for him having lost at Tottenham which was hugely disappointing.
“But Arsene Wenger will have been disappointed this week as well because the international matches are taking place. That means that virtually everyone will be away from the practice ground just at the exact time when you need to get down to the training ground to work hard and try to resolve it.”
While Gunners fans are looking down the barrel of a very disappointing season, Parlour believes that there are positives to be taken, with Wenger the key to a turnaround in fortunes.
“What should encourage the supporters is that Arsene Wenger is not a quitter. He is a very strong character,” he explained.
“He will keep going and keep trying and keep motivating the lads to do better and hopefully they will get out of this bad run they are on.
“It will be a hell of a battle to get into fourth place but it is a marathon. They have had a bad start and they have to make sure they somehow get a couple of clean sheets and hopefully the confidence will start flooding back.
“Arsene Wenger is fully aware that it will be a tough season for them – probably one of the toughest seasons he has had with the competition that will be having a real go at them. I think they will be okay but it will be a long, long season for them.
“They have to be looking at top four, top five. The fourth place is vital if they can get it. They have had Champions League football for 15 consecutive years now but it will be real tough to get into the top four because of the likes of Tottenham who are a very much improved club and Liverpool who have spent money and are on the up.”
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