While we all like to pretend it doesn’t matter what order we playing everyone in throughout the course of the Premier League season, deep down, we’re all aware of the fact that it does matter – and it matters quite a lot. Depending on your circumstances, facing a series of big teams or small teams consecutively can really impact your momentum, and while it’s easy to say ‘you have to play everyone twice anyway’ let’s face it, we all know that logic is a little bit flawed.
It doesn’t take a genius to figure that out, and it also doesn’t take a genius to realise that the majority of Arsenal fans would’ve circled the games against Tottenham Hotspur prior to any other, and that makes sense. After all the North London derby can be viewed as a highlight of the season for both teams, especially now that they seem to be on the rise together as opposed to one of them struggling.
With Unai Emery in charge, it legitimately feels like there’s a rebellion of sorts forming at the Emirates. Even though they’ve only had to endure it for two years, Gunners fans are sick and tired of playing second fiddle to Spurs. They’ve been second best in pretty much every department, and you could argue that’s Arsene Wenger’s biggest failure from his last few years in charge of the club.
Anyway, to the schedule. The first game comes at the beginning of a busy December period for Arsenal on December 1st – just three days before they play Manchester United. It’s good that they’re getting it out of the way before the hectic winter, but at the same time, a win or a loss could completely dictate the pace of their season all the way through to early February.
Then, the return fixture is on March 2nd, which is pretty inconsequential no matter how you look at it. There are still nine PL games remaining after this one, so it’s all about bragging rights – depending on where both find themselves in the table, of course.
We’ve gone through Arsenal’s start and end of the season for argument’s sake, and really, all that’s left to do now is get behind England until they eventually crash out and then start focusing our attention on the Gunners again. It’s been a long wait, but it’s almost time once again.
Are you excited for the season to start?