What Arsenal Must Do to Become a Title Contender

Christopher Lee

Arsenal may be top of the league after beating several good teams, but that's no reason to believe that they're title contenders

Arsenal are having a hell of a season. Recently four points clear at the top after beating Cardiff 3-0, and with title rivals losing or dropping points generally in remarkable fashion and Aaron Ramsey reverting back to his TS-300 programming, it would be easy for the fans to assume that Arsenal are now title contenders. Silly Gooners - it seems that years of not challenging for the title has caused many to forget the requirements for being labeled as title contenders. Winning games decisively has nothing to do with it.

Everyone knows that to be considered title contenders, Arsenal must beat the top 4 teams in the league and no one else, and also must complete the Twelve Labors of Hercules.

Arsenal fans have unfortunately shown their naivety and in the same process, embarrassed the club beyond repair for complaining that many media personalities and websites still refuse to see the club as title challengers. Credit should be given where it's due though, Arsenal did beat their rivals Tottenham Hotspur after not spending in the summer, while their opponent purchased almost an entire new team with Gareth Bale's oil money. Winning 1-0 against your hated rival is fine and good, but why hasn't Olivier Giroud slayed the Nemean Lion, a beast impervious to mortal attacks with claws that could slice through armor?

Even if Arsenal are on top of their Champions League group, recently winning 2-0 against a desperate Marseille team, with previous victories against Dortmund and Napoli, they have still not officially qualified for the next round. This is telling of their lack of championship quality. How do the fans also expect the team to have a chance at the Champions League trophy when Mesut Ozil has yet to bring us the heads of the Lamaean Hydra?

How does Arsenal expect to convince the media of their ability to maintain a title challenge when The Golden Hind of Artemis roams free in all of its illustriousness? Santi Cazorla's magical feet may evade defenders but is it as fleet as those of a godly deer?

Jack Wilshere, England's last hope, may venture into more forward positions now, scoring quick goals and assisting play on the wings while recapturing his old form before injury, but does he have it in him to capture the Erymanthian Boar? Will he be able to launch it into the sea, until it swims beneath the Arsenal plane on their way to face Napoli in the final Champions League match day? Mikel Arteta may be clean cut, but can he clean the Augean stables in a single day?

We have seen Mathieu Flamini cut his sleeves but when he is confronted by the metallic feathers of the Stymphalian birds, will he be able to stop them like he has stopped many opponents' counterattacks? You have to admit that the media is right to question Arsenal's title challenge at this point. It was not long ago that Arsenal lost to a David Moyes-managed Manchester United side. This, only a few weeks after losing to a struggling Chelsea side 2-0 in the prestigious Capital One Cup - and how can you change the mind of someone like Alan Hansen when Bacary Sagna can't even can't even capture the Cretan Bull?

Lack of squad depth, a second striker, not enough leaders in the team, and Kieran Gibbs' inability to steal the Mares of Diomedes are just a few things that Wenger has to address in the January transfer window or the team will collapse like in previous years. If you pin your hopes on Nicklas Bendtner while touting a defense that has a man like Per Mertesacker, who has wooed many Gooner women but still has not obtained the girdle of the Queen of the Amazons? Pitiful really.

On the island of Erytheia in Hesperides, in the far west of the Mediterranean, there dwells a gigantic monster with human faces -- like Sam Allardyce, but bigger. Some say that the monster has one body and three heads, others that it has three bodies and one head. There are even reports that it has six hands and feet and is winged. Surely if Arsenal would like to be recognized as title contenders, Laurent Koscielny should be able to obtain the cattle of the described Geryon.

Or even, as I mentioned the Hesperides -- nymphs who tend a blissful garden in the far western corner of the world-before, shouldn't Wojciech Szczęsny, who can trick forwards into miscuing their shot with his timing and body movement, be able to trick Atlas into retrieving the apples of the nymphs for him?

If Arsenal fans truly do want their team to be recognized this season, even with their record in the league and being four points clear at the top, they better well convince the players to complete these labors. How else the fans expect to convince Georgie Bingham, Adam Crafton, the aforementioned Hansen and even known intellect Wayne Rooney? Either you win the big games against a few teams or you place yourself at Eurystheus's mercy.

I for one won't be convinced until Arsene Wenger returns from the underworld with the heads of Cerberus dripping bloody in his grip.

Log In Sign Up

Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join The Short Fuse

You must be a member of The Short Fuse to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at The Short Fuse. You should read them.

Join The Short Fuse

You must be a member of The Short Fuse to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at The Short Fuse. You should read them.




Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.