Roy Keane and Gary Neville have given their thoughts on Arsenal’s top-four chances, after a strong weekend for Mikel Arteta’s side.
For the most part, the weekend’s results went in Arsenal’s favour in the top-four face.
West Ham United lost to Liverpool and Manchester United were thrashed by Manchester City, meaning Arsenal’s win over Watford took them above both with three games in hand on each of them.
Tottenham Hotspur are still to play, but they now sit six points behind Arsenal having played the same number of games.
The only downside was a dominant Chelsea win keeping them five points ahead of the Gunners and clear of the chasing pack.
With Manchester United’s chances of securing Champions League football looking increasingly bleak, a couple of their club legends spoke on the top-four race and Arsenal’s position in it.
“It’s been an amazing turnaround considering where they were at the start of the season,” Roy Keane said of Arsenal. “Now they’re probably favourites to finish in the top four.
“We’ve always questioned whether there’s a bit of softness to them. But they’re in a good moment now and they’ve always had that quality.
“Against Wolves they found a way to win the football match, they kept going and grabbed a late goal. That’s the key to success.
“You can have your off days, but you find a way to win and it was a huge three points for them.”
Gary Neville doesn’t seem quite so sure, praising Arsenal’s potential but admitting concerns over their ability to see out the season in the Champions League places.
“[Arteta] is [backing] good youth,” Neville said. “He has got players there, was it two years ago against Chelsea when there were a few players missing for various reasons?
“I think, from that moment, Mikel Arteta has recognised that is the way forward for the club. That he wants players he can work with. He can grow with and he can mould. They will have that fighting spirit.
“I don’t fully trust Arsenal, I think it will be brilliant for the club and Mikel Arteta if they do it, that group of players has been fantastic.
“But they’ve still got some big games to play – United still have to go to Arsenal and there’s a long way to go. United could still do it.”
Personally, as blasphemous as it might be to say, I actually think Spurs are a bigger threat to Arsenal than United.
They have the easier fixture list, and they’re the closer of the two if they win their games in hand on United. They’d be four points clear of United if that happened.
Given how poorly United performed against City, they could well go and lose to Spurs as well next weekend. It’s hard to see how they would come back after that.
As for Arsenal, we just need to keep taking things one game at a time.