Unai Emery admits defeat to Chelsea on Saturday would signal the end of any chances Arsenal had of finishing in the top four in the Premier League.
Arsenal manager Unai Emery admits the Gunners can kiss goodbye to their hopes of claiming a top-four finish this season if they lose at home to Chelsea on Saturday (Saturday Live Match Specials – A Goal Scored In Both Halves – 4/6).
The Spanish tactician saw his side fall to a 3-2 defeat at the hands of Chelsea in just their second game of the Premier League campaign, although they responded to that setback by enjoying a 22-game unbeaten run across all competitions.
Arsenal’s impressive form finally came to an end in December when they suffered successive defeats at the hands of Southampton and Tottenham, while they have since also lost to Liverpool and West Ham.
It means that they currently sit in fifth place, six points shy of fourth-placed Chelsea, ahead of Saturday’s London derby at the Emirates (Match Betting – Arsenal 2/1, draw 13/5, Chelsea 7/5).
Victory for the north Londoners would pile the pressure on Chelsea but a loss could see them slip down to sixth if Manchester United take anything from their home clash with Brighton.
When asked if a nine-point advantage for Chelsea would end Arsenal’s top four hopes, Emery said: “I think, yes.
“After we lost at West Ham it is very different – to have a three-point difference to Chelsea or six points. But it’s finished that match and the next match is against Chelsea we have an opportunity in front.
“If we win we can be closer to them and continue our way, and I think every player has this ambition and this opportunity to play on Saturday with all we can against them.”
Odds subject to change.