- By Afafe
Arsenal has started their current season with a greatest level of performance, topping the Premier League table from the start, with the team recording 16 wins in the first 19 rounds, two draws with Southampton and Newcastle, and one loss to Manchester United.
The level of the Gunners began to decline within the twentieth round, exactly since losing to Everton. In the last 18 games, they collected only 31 points with nine wins, four draws, and five defeats. However, Arsenal's 3-0 loss at home to Brighton has virtually ended their hopes of a first Premier League title since 2004, as the team is currently in the 2nd position in the 2022/23 English Premier League, with 81 points from 37 matches played, 4 points behind Manchester City
In this article, we sum up the reasons that led to the decline in the level of the Gunners recently:
1- The large number of injuries resulting in loss of balance between attack and defence
The London team suffered from the absence of many players from participating in matches due to injury, most notably is the absence of its French defender, William Saliba, due to his injury while playing against Sporting Lisbon in the Europa League on March 16. This has affected the Gunners’ performance as they kept only one clean sheet since his absence, only once out of nine confrontations in the Newcastle match, while the team conceded in the other eight games 17 goals, an average of more than two goals per game. They have also recorded only four wins against three draws and two defeats in nine Premier League games.
2- Lack of substitute players
The limited list on which the Spanish manager, Mikel Arteta, relies on, which may not exceed 14 players, affected the quality of the team and its ability to compete with City in the crucial stages of the season as the title struggle intensifies and to avoid relegation, This has led to the decline in the team’s level and the deterioration of its results during the recent period, as it collected only three points in four consecutive games, when drawing with Liverpool 2-2, West Ham 2-2, and Southampton 3-3, and the defeat by Manchester United. While Pep Guardiola's team has a vast squad of key players and backups in all positions and at close levels.
- Opponent power
The Spanish coach Pep Guardiola, the manager of Manchester City, has the experience and an integrated squad that contributed to its lead in the Premier League standings table, with several players who have already won the title on more than one occasion, such as De Bruyne and Riyad Mahrez, unlike the majority of Gunners players who live under such pressure for the first time. Also, the Norwegian striker Erling Haaland, who is the Premier League's top scorer with 36 goals, has played a key role after contributing to Manchester City blue victories in all competitions this season.