Arsenal were on the end of a humbling 3-0 defeat at Crystal Palace on Monday night to throw their chances of Champions League qualification into doubt. Goals from Jean-Philippe Mateta, Jordan Ayew and Wilfried Zaha saw Mikel Arteta and his side slump to fifth place.
North London rivals Tottenham currently lead the way in the race for top four, sitting in fourth on the same points as the Gunners, but having played one more game. While this may favour Arteta, games against Chelsea, Manchester United, West Ham and Spurs themselves make for a tricky run-in.
When asked about the impact of their rivals being above them in the table after the Palace game, the Spaniard said: “We still have a game in hand still and we need to play. We know in the nine games a lot of things will happen.
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“We have to play each other, we have to play some big games coming up, we have to focus on ourselves. The problem we had today was not Spurs, it was what we did in the first half.”
However, one positive for the Gunners is that things are still in their own hands as it currently stands. With the game in hand and a head-to-head with the Lilywhites, they will have to capitalise on the opportunity.
In a boost to their chances, predictors FiverThirtyEight have put through the chances of where each team could end up at the end of the season. The result still makes good reading for Arsenal.
According to the chances of qualifying for the Champions League, it looks like a straight shootout between the two London clubs. Arteta’s men are currently given the best chance to finish fourth, though only just with 52 percent.
Closely following are Tottenham with 44 percent. The other two teams in with a shout, Manchester United and West Ham, are given a five and two percent chance respectively.
It outlines just how close this race could go between Arsenal and Spurs, with the North London derby being played out on the third from last game. The outcome could be the deciding factor as there are more than just bragging rights up for grabs.