At this time last month, Arsenal were very much in the Premier League title race. Now, they cannot say for certain if they will even finish in the top four.
A 6-0 hammering at Chelsea was followed by draws against Swansea City and Manchester City, and then came the shattering 3-0 defeat to Everton at Goodison Park.
That run coupled with the Toffees’ streak of seven successive wins has propelled Roberto Martinez’s side to the fourth spot in the league table. The Gunners are a couple of points behind Everton, but with five matches left for both sides, it is the Merseyside outfit who are in pole position to clinch the final Champions League place.
However, Arsenal midfielder Mikel Arteta remains defiant. A former Everton star, the Spaniard insists that he is confident that he and his teammates will eventually reclaim the fourth spot.
Arsene Wenger’s team have come through an excruciating FA Cup semi-final tie against Championship outfit Wigan Athletic and confidence is high in the Arsenal campaign.
Despite the injuries to the likes of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Aaron Ramsey, Nacho Monreal and Santi Cazorla, Arteta, who himself picked up a calf problem at Wembley on Saturday, has faith in his team’s calibre to finish the season on a high.
However, Arteta admits that the London outfit cannot drop any more points if they want to return to the Champions League next season.
"I think it's still there for us,” The Mirror quotes the 32-year-old as saying. “There's still a long way to go - there's four weeks until the end of the season. I believe we can do it, but we need to win all our remaining championship games. If we don't, then I don't think we will do it.
"It's about confidence and it builds a bit of enthusiasm. The cup final gives us something to look forward to at the end of the season because on Tuesday there is another massive game coming up (against West Ham United at home).
"We will have to see what we have available because we lost a few players as well. Let's see what we've got, prepare for the game the best way we can because West Ham will be tough opponents again.”