This is not over yet – Mikel Arteta says Arsenal can still win the Premier League title


Man City are one point clear at the top with a game in hand.

Mikel Arteta insists Arsenal are still gunning for the Premier League title as he praised his squad for refusing to settle for UEFA Champions League qualification.

Arsenal have been top of the table for most of the season and slipped off the top following Manchester City’s 2-1 win at Fulham on Sunday afternoon.

City have now won eight consecutive league games, including a 4-1 thrashing of the Gunners last week that put a fifth title in six years in their own hands.

Conversely, Arsenal have picked up just three points from their last four games, but their form throughout the campaign has at least guaranteed a return to Champions League football after six seasons outside Europe’s top table.

While City are now favourites, Arteta will be looking to return to form as Chelsea look to visit the Emirates Stadium on Tuesday night, having refused to rule Arsenal out of the hunt.

“We have achieved what was difficult to achieve and we can still achieve the Premier League because there are five games left and there are still a lot of things to happen,” he said.

“The title race is no longer in our hands. What is in our hands is to try and win the games we have left and the rest is up to City.

“We have to forget what happened last week, learn from it and go into the next game with full commitment at home, with our people, the London derby, and put things right.

“I know what we’ve been trying to do, what the goal of what we’ve been doing is, and we still have the best part of the season to play, with five games to go. But when I keep looking at it, this isn’t over yet.

“I’m incredibly proud and grateful to everyone who has contributed to bringing Champions League football back to this club with five or six games to go, something that hasn’t happened at this football club in over a decade.

“So congratulations but also thank you for still being angry and not accepting that the Champions League is not enough and we want more because this team will demand to get what we want.”

Victory over Chelsea would put Arsenal back at the top of the table for at least 24 hours, having led the pack for 247 nights this season.

The Blues, who spent £600m on players in the last two transfer windows, are on an eight-game winless run and have Frank Lampard as interim boss after Graham Potter was sacked in April.

But Arteta believes Chelsea’s woes are proof the club need more than a huge transfer budget to be successful.

“We have very important things in our model,” he said.

“The first thing is to have the right people, and I think we have the right people. Then we have the right players who can compete, can challenge, can understand their role in the team.

“You need quality, goal threat, physicality, you need a lot of things in this game and it’s extremely difficult to find that weak balance with the players.

“Recruitment is just… you have the best of intentions, but then the player has to come here, he has to fit in, he has to get that chemistry with the manager, the teammates, the staff, the country.” It’s not easy at all, so kudos to everyone who makes these decisions.

“They have exceptional talent. If they can pull it off, they can do anything because they have the players, the infrastructure and the history to do it.”

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