Does Arsenal Really Deserve to Win the Premier League?
Another 1-0 win. Another hard-earned three points. Another poor display. Another last-gasp winner.
All these describe Arsenal's match against a resilient Wolverhampton in the Emirates stadium on Saturday.
The Wolves would have earned a well-deserved draw if not Bendtner got his head to a Bacary Sagna cross in the last minute of injury time. The 22-year-old Dane might have scored his most important goal of the season.
The last-minute winner allowed Arsenal to keep alive their hopes in the title race. They are now three points behind league leaders Chelsea and a point behind second-place United with relatively easy games compared to the other two league contenders.
If they can play consistently without giving any more slip-ups to their opponents, they still have a good chance of winning the league.
But does Arsenal really deserve to win the league?
Many Gunners will argue that Arsenal really deserves to win the Premier League title this season given their inspiring performances all season through.
No doubt Arsenal have done well enough to still be in contention for the Premier League title. They coped really well in the absence of their main striker Van Persie.
The Gunners' were eight points behind league leaders Chelsea in November when Van Persie got sidelined for the rest of the season due to injury. But the Gunners coped well in his absence and reduced that difference to nil in January.
They again fell back and were six points behind Chelsea in February but have recovered since then and are now within three points of the current league leaders.
The present Arsenal team has some impressive young players in the likes of Nasri, Song, Vermaelen, and Diaby. The young Gunners have really impressed one and all with their talent and skill this season. The Arsenal team is very dynamic and fast which makes them all the more threatening for their opponents.
Another reason Wenger & Co. still have a chance to make a go for the title is that they have performed pretty well against the teams in the lower half of the table. Except for a few slip-ups, the Gunners have had a decent run against their weaker opponents.
But Arsenal have been able to reduce the points difference with the top two only because Chelsea and United lost silly points with lower-ranked teams. Arsenal themselves were convincingly beaten twice by Chelsea and United this season.
There is no doubts that Arsenal did enough to still stay in the race for the title. But they have also been rather inconsistent at times.
They let down their guard when at the top of the table. At one point in the season, they were four points ahead of Chelsea and they returned the favour to their title rivals.
They looked shaky against Birmingham last week where they were held to a 1-1 draw. They looked set for a 1-1 draw with the Tigers' and only a last minute goal saved Gunners' the shame.
The match against Wolves did not do much to improve their image. Arsenal clearly had numerous chances to be at the top but they let down most of the times with their sloppy performances in matches that mattered the most.
Yesterday's match proved yet again Arsenal's dependence on their inspirational captain Fabregas. Fabregas, who suffered a heart-breaking injury against Barcelona last Wednesday, may be sidelined for the rest of the season.
Fabregas is the prime source of Arsenal's attacking style of play. He makes the accurate incisive crosses and passes that majority of times creates a goal-scoring opportunity for Arsenal.
In majority of Arsenal's impressive performances this season, Cesc has been in superb form.
In most of the matches that Fabregas has been on the bench or has been a bit off-colour, Arsenal have lacked creativity.
In the match against the Tigers, Fabregas was rested and Arsenal narrowly won thanks to a last-gasp winner from Bendtner.
Against Birmingham City, Cesc had been marked out of the game and it affected the whole team's performance. Arsenal were held to a 1-1 draw against the resilient City.
Yesterday's narrow draw may have allowed Wenger to run around happily at the touchline but he must be a worried man deep inside.
Arsenal's lack of creating goal scoring chances was clearly visible, and Fabregas's absence was surely felt at the Emirates stadium.
With the return leg against Barcelona at Camp Nou just a couple of days away, Arsenal surely need to work harder if they want to get to the next stage in Champions League.
Arsenal also lacks the inability to handle pressure unlike its other two rivals Chelsea and Manchester United. They look to break down quite easily.
Except the match against Barcelona, where they really impressed with their late surge the Gunners' really lack the quality to handle pressure.
Against Chelsea the Gunners were playing well until the first Chelsea goal. After that they looked out of sync which resulted in conceding the second goal.
Similarly, against Manchester United also they started pretty impressively, but after conceding the first goal, Wengers' youngsters looked incoherent and got battered by the ruthless Red Devils.
The race for the title till the end of season is really turning out to be a thriller. Arsenal still have a good chance to win the Premier League title this season.
But they need to work more on their weaknesses and maintain their strength consistently. Another slip-up and Wenger's dreams of any silverware will be all but over.
Hopefully the title will be won by the team who really were the most deserving and Arsenal will be hoping to get the honors.
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