The realistic expectations for Arsenal football club at the start of this season were to challenge for a European spot, but probably no more. The top four clubs in the Premier League had all strengthened their squads, leaving Arsenal behind and hoping for fifth at best.
11 games in, and things have changed. The Gunners lost their first three games, which led to some fans asking for Mikel Arteta to be sacked as boss. Since then, fans have seen a tremendous turnaround. Arsenal is unbeaten in eight games, winning six and drawing two, a run that moved the team up the table, and left them on the cusp of grabbing a top-four spot.
This has led to Arsenal fans believing they can reach this position, and many outsiders have started to sit up and take notice of what is going on at the Emirates Stadium. Bookmakers have shortened odds across the board after this recent promising run. The Gunners are priced at +310 in the football betting on sites like Space Casino to finish in the top four, although West Ham is the only team they are close to.
Who Has Led the Arsenal Transformation?
While there have been a number of good performances in recent weeks, two players have stood out, and are reason why Arsenal fans are excited about the future once more.
— Premier League (@premierleague) October 30, 2021
Emile Smith Rowe is the first of those. The 21-year-old midfielder has the ability to become one of the best English midfielders in the game if he continues to progress like he is doing. He can score goals, provide assists, create something from nothing and generally give Arsenal the spark that it has been lacking for the past couple of seasons.
Arsenal has had a group of young, talented attackers at the club for a while now, and it is starting to see these players turn into genuine top Premier League names. Smith Rowe and Bukayo Saka are leading Arsenal out of their troubles and towards success.
✋ All the stops
🎯 All the distributions
— Arsenal (@Arsenal) October 31, 2021
The second player to mention is Aaron Ramsdale, the goalkeeper that Arsenal signed from Sheffield United during the summer. He was brought in to challenge for the number one spot but has claimed it as his own already after just a short period of time at the club.
Goalkeepers often develop later than outfield players, so the fact he is 23 means that he is comparably inexperienced. If he keeps on this track, Arsenal has found its number one goalkeeper for the next decade.
With flair going forward, goals in the team, and a strong defensive setup that has Ramsdale in behind, Arsenal is on the march. Although a dream at the start of the season, finishing inside the top four may now be a realistic aim for The Gunners.