There aren’t many people around who rate Arsenal’s chances of returning to the top four this season.
Only 12 games remain in this Premier League season, and it’s safe to say Arsenal have work to do if they’re going to return to the Champions League next season.
Arsenal currently sit sixth in the table, four points behind fifth-placed Tottenham, five behind four-placed Chelsea and six behind third-placed Liverpool.
There is still time to overhaul those gaps, but there are a number of obstacles to overcome.
These were highlighted in the Guardian’s prediction of who will make the top four.
None of their journalists had any doubts about Manchester United, given the cushion they have on the competition.
All but one of them thought Spurs and Liverpool would make it, while Arsenal weren’t given any chance.
The key problem for Arsenal has been their wretched away form, which has seen them win just three times on the road this season in the Premier League.
The new January signings could give us a lift and help our away form, but it’s a big ask.
In addition, we’ll have the Europa League to work with as well. We could end up relying on that competition to get back into the Champions League.
Still, we aren’t entirely without hope.
Chelsea are going through a rough patch and have by far the toughest fixtures remaining, as they play four of the current big six.
Tottenham have some tough games remaining as well, as they have three games against the top six, including Saturday’s North London derby.
If Arsenal can put a strong run together, there could be opportunities for them to close the gap.