Only seven teams in the history of the Premier League have savoured title glory. When an exciting era for top-flight football was embraced back in 1992, Manchester United quickly set about establishing domestic dominance and helped themselves to 13 crowns under the guidance of Sir Alex Ferguson.
Over the years, Blackburn Rovers, Chelsea, Manchester City, Leicester City and Liverpool have also experienced what it is like to be considered kings of the English game. The final entry on that notable roll of honour belongs to Arsenal.
The first of three!
— GOAL (@goal) April 20, 2018
The Gunners were left somewhat blinded as a new dawn broke, with a 10th-place finish the best they could muster in the inaugural Premier League season. They have, however, come a long way since and are very much in the mix for ultimate honours in 2022-23.
Mikel Arteta has the red half of north London daring to dream once more, with football tips today continuing to side with an Arsenal team that boasts all the hallmarks of would-be champions. They have come in as short as 8/11 for title glory, with questions of their ability to cement a standing at the summit being answered in style.
Few in the Emirates Stadium camp can all upon prior experience of being in such a position, with this all very new to them, but painful memories are proving to be as motivational as happy ones. Arteta has said of forging a winning mentality: “It is something that we have to train, discuss and build. It is not easy. But a lot of the time it happens through experiences and most of the time it is experiences that you don’t want to go through.”
The same was true for the Arsenal squads that lifted themselves onto the loftiest of pedestals back in the late 1990s. It took the arrival of Arsene Wenger as manager in 1996 to get the Gunners firing, with a fuse lit at Highbury that burnt brightly for the best part of a decade.
Between 1998 and 2005, Arsenal never finished outside of the top two. During that time they won the FA Cup on four occasions, while collecting as many Community Shield triumphs. More importantly, they also helped themselves to three Premier League titles.
The Gunners emerged victorious in 1997-98, 2001-02 and 2003-04. The last of those triumphs, which remains the club’s most recent, has gone down in football folklore due to the exploits of the now fabled ‘Invincibles’.
The Invincibles in 2003/04 were on another level 🔴pic.twitter.com/9K40RArEcQ
— B/R Football (@brfootball) March 4, 2020
Arsenal’s class of 2022-23 is not going to emulate the unbeaten run enjoyed by a legendary squad that included the likes of Patrick Viera, Thierry Henry and Dennis Bergkamp, but there is an opportunity to lay almost two decades of agonising near misses and painful regression to rest.
In many ways, landing a fourth league title would represent a greater achievement for the Gunners than any of their three previous triumphs – with the Premier League an altogether different beast that often rewards those with the deepest pockets – and they will hope that getting over that line, if that proves to be possible, helps to lay the foundations on which another dynasty of sorts can be built.