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Michael Owen predicts where Arsenal and Man City will finish this season - 042sport

Michael Owen predicts where Arsenal and Man City will finish this season

Michael Owen is backing Manchester City to win the Premier League title this season – but says Arsenal are “here to stay” after their impressive start.

The north Londoners are top of the Premier League table after 10 games, having opened up a four-point lead over second-placed Manchester City as they bid to secure their first top-four finish since 2016.

Arsenal’s 1-0 win at Leeds United at the weekend confirmed their best start to a top-flight campaign for more than a century, and Mikel Arteta has been widely praised for getting the best out of his young team at The Emirates.

Manchester City were beaten 1-0 by Liverpool FC at Anfield on Sunday but Pep Guardiola’s men are still the bookmakers’ favourites to win a third straight Premier League title this season.

Former Liverpool FC and England striker Owen has been impressed by what he’s seen from Arsenal so far this season and is expecting to see them finish in the top four – but he is tipping City to retain their title.

“Arsenal have surprised a lot of people, and I don’t think it’s a fluke,” Owen said in an interview with Aceodds.com. “When you watch their performances, they’ve actually played really well.

“The good thing for them is that they’ve got a young team. So you would think that energy and improvement will continue to come for them. So I don’t think Arsenal are a flash in the pan at all. I think they’ll sustain it. I think they’ll have a good season.

“But I think Manchester City are different class to anyone at the moment. I think they’ve had a great start to the season. Obviously, they lost to Liverpool the other day, but they look so good in so many games. So I still think Manchester City will win the league, but I think Arsenal are here to stay.”

Pressed on how he sees the top four shaping up this season, Owen replied: “Well, it is tough to call the top four. Manchester City for sure. I think Chelsea are probably going to be in the top four. Arsenal as well. It’s very hard to leave one out, isn’t it?

“I’m actually torn between Liverpool and Tottenham at the moment. I’m going to say Liverpool, but how can you leave Tottenham out of the top four when they are playing particularly well as well?

“Manchester United, they’ve got a good chance. But there’s going to be a massive team that everybody would expect to be in the top four that are going to miss out this year.

“I do think Liverpool are still right up there among the elite. I think that even though Arsenal had a good start to the season and Liverpool are maybe ten points or so behind them, I still think that Manchester City and Liverpool are the top two teams in Europe for that matter.

“So it’s so hard to say. I’ll probably say Tottenham will miss out. I don’t actually believe that’s true, but I don’t know who else.”

Owen was speaking before Tottenham were beaten 2-0 by Manchester United at Old Trafford on Wednesday night – a result which left Spurs four points behind Arsenal having played one game more than the Gunners.

Meanwhile, Arsenal are currently gearing up for their Europa League clash against PSV Eindhoven at The Emirates on Thursday evening, with the Gunners bidding to secure their place in the round of 32 with a victory.

The north Londoners have won all three of their European games so far this season and face a PSV side who are also undefeated in this season’s competition.

At his pre-match news conference on Wednesday, Gunners boss Arteta revealed that the atmosphere in the Arsenal dressing room is as good as it has been for some time – but he also said that his side still have plenty of room for improvement.

Asked if the mood in the dressing room is different this season, Arteta replied: “Yeah, winning obviously helps a lot, but I have no complaints.

“I think this is an exceptional group that is in a really good moment, we are enjoying the moment, we want to get better in a lot of things that we are doing, but I think that we are on the right path.”

Arteta also talked up the importance of Arsenal winning their Europa League group – with the Gunners currently top of Group A after three games.

He added: “[It is] really important [to try and win the group]. In Europe, when you have the chance to take advantage you have to do it. It’s always very unpredictable what can happen in the next game. You have to go away and we know the level of the other teams as well.

“What I can say watching them [PSV] and what they are doing domestically, internationally, [it will be] a really tough match.”

After Thursday’s clash, the Gunners will then turn their attentions towards their next Premier League game – a trip to face Southampton on Sunday.


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