Arsenal fans are in for a long, trying season. We knew that before Week 3 of the 2011-2012 Premier League season, but the Gunners' dismantling at the hands of Manchester United on Sunday highlighted it even further.
The Red Devils ran out 8-2 winners at Old Trafford on Sunday just after their noisy neighbors Manchester City had made a mockery of Arsenal's arch rivals Tottenham at White Hart Lane.
Though the table means little so early in the season, the first three (in some cases two) games show us a lot about a team and give us and managers plenty to ponder during the international break.
There was plenty of delightful football this weekend, and with the transfer window closing late Wednesday, the next few days are sure to be exciting.
Let's take a look at what we learned in the past two days.
Last weekend at Stamford Bridge, Chelsea were being kept in check and almost dominated by West Brom until the Baggies just decided to sit back and let Chelsea run at them.
Chelsea did, and they came back to win the game.
It was a similar story on Saturday against Norwich City.
Chelsea grabbed an early lead thanks to a stunner from Jose Bosingwa, but it wasn't long before they lost their flair and couldn't string passes together.
Norwich controlled the game for large parts and got a deserved equalizer in the 63rd minute when Petr Cech's backup Hilario made a mess of a nothing lob.
But after that, Norwich simply fell apart and let Chelsea take the game back.
In the 82nd minute, Nicolas Anelka, who started on the bench, played in the speedy Ramires with a great ball, and Norwich keeper John Ruddy had no choice but to concede a penalty and was then sent off.
It wasn't until late in stoppage time that Chelsea's new signing Juan Mata actually gave the Blues some breathing room though. The winger capitalized on a Ritchie De Laet mistake to slot the ball into the back of the net for a goal on his Chelsea debut.
It was another very unconvincing win from Chelsea who are still lacking some creativity in the midfield and still have question marks up front.
Fernando Torres was unimpressive and was only able to connect with Didier Drogba once, and he also earned himself a yellow card. So that's four yellow cards and one goal in Chelsea colors for the Spaniard.
Luis Suarez has been in fantastic form ever since the 2010 World Cup.
He was very unlucky not to score in his fourth straight game this season when Liverpool welcomed Bolton to Anfield on Saturday.
Suarez is one of the most skillful players in the game today, and he's always full of energy, but it could start hurt him at times.
Suarez is always asking (very emphatically that is) the officials something, and whether or not he is in the right.
As he often was on Saturday, his fiery nature could get him into trouble.
For Liverpool fans, it is great to see that passion in their star, but Suarez must learn to keep his temper in check because officials these days won't tolerate it for very long.
When Harry Redknapp came to Tottenham's rescue in late 2008, for the next year-and-a-half, it seemed like everything he did for Spurs was magic.
Redknapp's shrewd managing coupled with breakout performances and a little bit of luck seems to have worn out because now, nothing is going Tottenham's way.
They were thoroughly outclassed by Manchester City Sunday at White Hart Lane, and the worst part is it could've been a different story had they taken their chances.
Gareth Bale couldn't put a foot wrong for much of last season, but he made a complete mess of a first-half chance, much like his teammates.
Luka Modric faded more and more as the game went on, and he really looked like he didn't want to be there.
After the game, Redknapp said Modric came to him Sunday morning and told him he did not want to play, but Redknapp told the Croatian his team needed him. Good of 'Arry to instill some character and sense of commitment in the boy, but you've got to know when to let go.
If Modric is simply going to be dead weight, Redknapp should sell him now while he still looks a decent player.
Spurs are apparently close to signing last year's FWA Player of the Year Scott Parker from West Ham, but Spurs would need him and Modric to really remain competitive this year.
So Arsenal fans, something for you to smile about. Tottenham is languishing right there with you, and they have to play in the Europa League. Count your blessings.
The first Manchester Derby this season is Sunday Oct. 23 at Old Trafford, and it should be a very entertaining match.
Manchester United and Manchester City are top of the table with nine points out of nine and are plus-10 and plus-nine in goal difference, respectively.
Both have looked absolutely unstoppable, save a couple small weaknesses, and it will be a test of who can outsmart who when the faceoff.
Liverpool and Chelsea aren't far behind on points, but performance-wise, United and City are in a class of their own.
United didn't look like champions when they just barely got the win at West Brom to start the season. They rebounded nicely by demolishing and taking advantage of Tottenham and Arsenal, two clubs in awful form at the moment.
City meanwhile have been flying from the beginning, demolishing Swansea at home and beating both Bolton and Tottenham away, two clubs very good in front of their own fans.
A lot of things can happen between now and Oct. 23, but either of these teams slowing down before then likely won't be two of them.
You can feel just a little sorry for Carlos Tevez. A little.
Off the pitch, the Argentine striker wants to leave Manchester City because he misses his family.
The club won't let him go for less than his worth, a price no one has been able to match as of yet.
On the pitch, well, Tevez can't get on the pitch. He's been watching his side blow through their opponents from the bench, and he'll probably be staying there.
Edin Dzeko has gotten off to a flying start, and Sergio Aguero has blended in seamlessly. One plus for Tevez is that because he isn't a pest like Mario Balotelli, he at least isn't at the bottom of Roberto Mancini's list.
It doesn't look like Tevez will be going anywhere before Wednesday's deadline, so Tevez better get comfortable on that bench, at least until January.