Arsenal midfielder Mikel Arteta believes that it is the clubs strength in midfield that will give them the edge over rivals in the run-in for the Premiership title.
Currently the Gunners trail Chelsea by just one point as we head into the last dozen matches of this seasons campaign with fellow challengers Manchester City still having a game in hand.
While much has been made of Arsenals lack of striking power up front, where Olivier Giroud is playing as the loan striker combined with the injury to Theo Walcott Arteta points out that the clubs strength lies in midfield.
Arteta returned to the team for the 4-1 win over Sunderland leaving Mathieu Flamini on the bench, and with Aaron Ramsey close to returning to the team Arteta feels it is a big plus for the team in the race for the title.
“It helps the team because we can rotate players and we can play differently,” Arteta said on Arsenal Player.
“We can play with two [in midfield] and it gives us another option.
“No-one has been able to play every game this season. I think the league is getting more demanding, you need a big squad, you can’t afford to have only 11 players.”
The Gunners face Stoke City at the Britannia Stadium this weekend, and you would hardly claim it to be the ideal match to play before a run of games that include the return leg against Bayern Munich in the Champions League, a north London derby and then what could be title determining games against Chelsea and Manchester City.
Midfielder Jack Wilshere however is upbeat telling Sky Sports: “We know what to expect. Stoke away is always a tough game.”
“We have to again press them high up the pitch and try to deal with the long balls they are going to play, so when we get the ball, we have to play.”
Club record signing Mesut Özil should be back, but Kieran Gibbs remains a doubt but Laurent Koscielny and Nacho Monreal should both be fit to play.