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Tuesday, 2 August 2016

Arsenal

Arsenal won the last of their three Premier League titles in 2003/04, when the so-called “Invincibles” played all 38 games without a single defeat. Nevertheless, despite enduring one of his most difficult seasons so far in 2015/16, Gunners’ boss Arsene Wenger, the longest serving manager in European football, remains at the helm and his side are a top-priced 15/2 for the Premier League title in 2016/17.

Last year, the Gunners’ title challenge faded rapidly amid mounting injuries and poor form, but they still pipped Tottenham Hotspur to second place and, in so doing, achieved their highest Premier League finish since 2004/05. In last year’s summer transfer window, Arsenal signed goalkeeper Peter Cech, but no outfield players and, once again, Wenger and the board of directors have been criticised for lack of transfer activity. The signing of Switzerland midfielder Granit Xhaka from Borussia Monchengladbach for a reported £35 million and defender Rob Holding from Bolton Wanderers for a fee believed to be about £2 million is unlikely to satisfy critics, especially with centre-half Per Mertesacker due to miss the start of the Premier League season with a knee injury.

Wenger appears to be facing another difficult season, but the Gunners have won the F.A. Cup twice in the last three seasons and anyone who fancies them to do so again may fancy a punt at 9/1.

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