Breaking down Arsenal’s progress in the English Premier League 2023/24

Arsenal’s exceptional performances last season nearly secured them the EPL title, surprising the football world. Unfortunately, their opportunity was thwarted by Manchester City, who clinched the league title with a five-point lead over Arsenal. This season, Mikel Arteta focused on bolstering specific positions in the team through new player acquisitions. The first priority is to strengthen the defensive midfield with a potential signing of Declan Rice from West Ham.

Anticipated adjustments were made in the attacking midfield, leading to the acquisition of Kai Havertz from Chelsea. In order to enhance the team’s dynamics, Mikel Arteta acquired Jurien Timber from Ajax to strengthen the defense. Nevertheless, these modifications brought about their own set of challenges and additional unexpected ones for the club. Here are our EPL predictions for Arsenal fixtures, as given by our expert analysts. Next, we will delve into the obstacles they have encountered and their strategies for overcoming them.

What challenges has Arsenal encountered in the EPL 2023/24 season?

Arsenal is currently striving to bounce back from last season’s near-successful campaign. Being in the top three positions this season, the competition is fiercer than last season, with only a few points separating them from the leading contender, Liverpool. If not for a few setbacks the team has encountered over the past twenty-five game weeks, they would likely be at the top. Leading the list of obstacles are injuries to players.

Scoring Efficiency

Prior to the team’s return from the training camp in Dubai, we observed them generating numerous opportunities in their matches but struggling to convert them effectively. With narrow goal margins, many teams believed they could exploit the situation and occasionally did. This pattern emerged during the matches against Fulham, Tottenham, and Chelsea with all ending in a 2-2 draw.

Their success can be attributed to their strong attacking midfield and forward line, with Bukayo Saka standing out as a key player in their games. Kai Havertz is showing some improvement in his performance and is starting to gel with the rest of the team. Without Gabriel Jesus in the team’s forward line, the team’s conversion rates have noticeably dropped.

Affect of Injured Players

Arsenal has faced a major challenge this season with the injuries sustained by players. Several key team members have been injured multiple times, preventing the team from performing at their best. Fabio Vieira, an attacking midfielder for the team, has been sidelined with an injury since November. Reports indicated that the player underwent surgery for a groin issue, sidelining him from the season for a few weeks. Based on recent updates, Mikel Arteta is still in the recovery phase and is unlikely to participate in upcoming matches despite initial expectations of a return after the winter break.

Thomas Partey, the team’s defensive midfielder, has been sidelined for the entire season. He sustained a thigh injury during the 2022/23 season and has had surgery. However, in the midst of his recovery last month, he faced another setback. In a recent press conference, Mikel Arteta mentioned that the player was nearing full fitness and would likely rejoin the squad shortly.

Similarly, Gabriel Jesus suffered an ACL injury during the 2022 World Cup. Despite undergoing multiple surgeries in the last year, he has yet to make a full recovery. Arteta mentioned in interviews that he is nearing full recovery and will likely rejoin the team soon. Another injury setback occurred with Oleksandr Zinchenko, who was dealing with a calf issue. He is believed to be further from recovery than Gabriel Jesus and Thomas Partey. Similar concerns surround Takehiro Tomiyasu, who is reportedly still far from fully recovering from a calf injury sustained in December.

A short phase of irregular victories 

Between November and early January, Arsenal displayed a below-average performance. This period saw victories, ties, and defeats against surprising opponents. During this period, the team suffered its first loss to Newcastle in a 1-0 defeat. After four matches, they suffered a 1-0 defeat against Aston Villa, followed by a 1-1 draw with Liverpool following the Brighton game, and then a 2-1 loss to Fulham. During these periods of losses and draws, Liverpool and Manchester City, their top competitors, were accumulating points and maintaining a lead over the team. Arsenal is closing the gap, with just one point separating them from Manchester City in second place and two points behind Liverpool in first place.

How has Arsenal managed to navigate these challenges?

Arsenal has had to rely on the remaining fit players to compensate for injuries. In the defense section, Mikel Arteta has been consistently selecting Ben White for games, and his performances have been quite impressive. He has been performing admirably alongside Saliba, Zinchenko, and Cedric to support Raya in achieving the most clean sheets this season. 

Declan Rice has been performing admirably in the midfield, delivering solid value with his recent displays. Kai Havertz has been performing well enough to secure a spot in the starting lineup for recent matches. Both players have been working well with Odegaard to create a strong midfield partnership. The forwards are stepping up in the absence of Gabriel Jesus, particularly with Bukayo Saka in the mix.

Bukayo Saka has proven to be a crucial element of the team, consistently generating opportunities and finding the back of the net. He collaborates with other forwards, such as Martinelli and Trossard, to create a strong and imposing frontline for Arsenal. The team operates cohesively, showcasing strategic and outstanding displays, as seen in their recent matches.

After struggling with a low conversion rate and a series of losses and draws, the team managed to turn things around following a training camp in Dubai. The training camp lasted for a week, focusing on improving the players’ fitness levels and refining tactics to secure victory in the league. We observed several injured players on this journey, such as Gabriel Jesus, Zichenko, Vieira, Thomas Partey, and Jurrien Timber.

Since returning from the training camp, the team has secured victories over Crystal Palace (5-0), Nottingham Forest (2-1), Liverpool (3-1), West Ham (6-0), and Burnley (5-0). No doubt, their conversion rate has improved, and they are on a winning streak to secure their spot in the top three of the league.

In conclusion

Arsenal has shown significant improvement from their recent seasons, establishing themselves as a formidable team in the EPL. Right now, the competition for the title is extremely close, with the top three teams separated by less than five points. Arsenal fans are eagerly anticipating their team maintaining a winning streak and achieving a miraculous climb to the top of the table. Stay tuned for our football predictions on Arsenal and all the other EPL teams. Make sure to keep up with us!

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