The last decade for Arsenal has seen some positive and negative factors. On the plus side, Arsene Wenger won three FA Cups, moved to the Emirates Stadium. On the down side, Arsenal have recently sacked their manager Unai Emery. The Arsenal dwindling fan base for home fixtures has reduced, and financial results are apparently down for last year according to a BBC Sport article by Simon Stone: “Arsenal have revealed a pre-tax loss of £23.5m for the year to 31 May, compared with a £97.4m profit 12 months earlier.”
The new Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has got a huge task to get the squad up to the heights of silverware and challenging for trophies once more. A new decade for Arsenal Football Club looms and the next two fixtures could change our current campaign, from a relegation battle to a challenge for the top four. The team could still finish in the top four and win The Europa League and The FA Cup. There is also, over the summer, the chance to rebuild an Arsenal squad that can challenge for the Premiership once more.
The prospect of losing top players could make the situation worse for the Gunners, with further contract sagas proving a real problem for the Arsenal hierarchy. Aubameyang’s contract runs out this summer, and the club may have to sell the Golden Boot winner to bring in much needed revenue, to sign the next Ozil and balance the books.
Mikel Arteta will be hoping for the same attitude he spoke of following Arsenal’s match against Bournemouth, with Arsenal coming from 1-0 down, to draw 1-1. We can see our manager’s intent from the Arsenal players. The manager’s feelings were echoed, when speaking to BT Sport after the the 0-0 draw against Everton, Arsenal Defender Calum Chambers said:
Mikel wants us to be brave, take responsibility and to work hard for each other. We’ll be working hard on his philosophy this week in training.
We were ready for the challenge and to battle in the 50/50 duels. We’ve been working hard in training so I was pleased to contribute to a clean sheet today.
We’re a promising group so we have to work hard and build on today’s performance.
A massive Premier League fixture looms between Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal and Frank Lampard’s Chelsea on Sunday 29th December. The match could allow Arteta to stamp his authority on the Arsenal team, and rejuvenate their lacklustre 2019/2020 league campaign. The current Arsenal team is similar to the team that beat Chelsea at home last season, before losing the Europa League final 4-1, so we don’t know which Chelsea will turn up.
Chelsea have been slipping up and losing at Stamford Bridge in recent fixtures, but winning away matches. However, against Tottenham, Chelsea played with a defensive unit of pacy players such as Kurt Zouma preventing Spurs from scoring. The Chelsea team also delivered cutting passes and long through balls, to slice open Jose Mourinho’s Spurs. Frank Lampard’s Chelsea fallibility, to lose home fixtures in recent games makes It is hard to predict if Chelsea are going to play like they did and win against Tottenham, or succumb to defeat like they did against Southampton.
There are some selection dilemmas for Mikel Arteta, such as Buyako Saka being played at left back, where predictably Chelsea may launch their attacks that could expose his naivety playing full back. Pepe has been an increasingly marginalised player in recent fixtures and could be warranting inclusion in the starting line up. The fixture promises to be a fiery and captivating encounter, and the Emirates Stadium could be full capacity to welcome Arteta in his first home fixture. Last season, Arsenal’s form was better than their away form, but I feel the game will be a 2-2 draw with goals in the match but no clear winner.