April The Month of Destiny
Arsenal took a significant step in qualifying for the Champions League this weekend. After the Fulham game which as a bit of a disaster, we waited with baited breath as Aston Villa played Stoke. The news was not good with ten minutes to go, Villa were leading 2-0, and we faced an eight point deficit. Villa then crumbled and drew the game. Arsenal were handed a lifeline.
Our next three games were all before Villa played, we won all three and Villa lost their games so we now lead them by three points.
We now enter the next phase of our season, we enter a period with important cup ties and critical league matches to ensure we cement our fourth place and also to try and take third place. Third place is not a pipedream, we are six points behind Chelsea, and they have to visit the Emirates.
Our next four league game are home to Manchester City, away to Wigan Athletic, away to Liverpool and home to Middlesbrough. Both the home games are winnable, whilst two draws is the least we should get from the away games. By the time we face Manchester City, Fabregas, Adebayor and Walcott will all be back from injury.
Aston Villa play Manchester United (a), Everton (h), West Ham (h) and Bolton (a). Two difficult away games and two awkward home games. Chelsea play Newcastle (a), Bolton (h), Everton (h), and West Ham (a). Again not plain sailing so we could be very close to Chelsea after this sequence of matches.
This period will test the depth of our squad, we face Villarreal either side of the Wigan game and three days after the second leg we play Chelsea in the FA Cup semi final, which is followed three days later with a tough trip away at Anfield.
This period of games is vital for us, it will determine how our season finishes, for that reason Adebayor and Fabregas need to come back firing on all cylinders, whilst we need Eduardo to remain injury free for the rest of the season.