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Only two perilous points currently keep Arsenal above Manchester City, who are in fourth place. The problem is that City have not one, but two games in hand.
Just like that, Arsenal have gone from having their fate in their own hands to clinging to the final Champions League spot, as they did last season. The downturn has been rather stunning.
Consider the difficulty of Arsenal's next matches: Everton, Bayern Munich, Tottenham, Chelsea, Manchester City and Everton again.
The Bayern match and one of the Everton matches are not in the Premier League, but considering Arsenal's near total inability to beat the big teams this season, the physical and mental strain of that run of fixtures is liable to sap the team's strength.