Writing in his weekly column, Hoddle feels a good run in the Champions League could ultimately hinder City’s title prospects and hand the initiative to Arsenal.
“Manchester City ought to be favourites because of the money and squad they have, but my feeling is that they will struggle to combine a Champions League campaign and title challenge, which is why, though Leicester, Tottenham and Manchester United could feature, I have Arsenal as my favourites,” he explained.
Arsenal’s bid to win their first title in over a decade took a hit at the weekend as they were defeat 1-0 by London rivals Chelsea at the Emirates Stadium.
It leaves Arsene Wenger’s men in third spot in the table, three points behind leaders Leicester City.
In spite of the setback, Arsenal’s situation is beginning to look better amid the return of a number of players from injury and their European clash with Barcelona could work out in their favour.
If, as expected, Barcelona prevail over the two legs, the North London side can then turn their full attention to the league and prepare better mentally for the task in hand.
City, on the hand, have a relatively forward looking European tie with Dynamo Kiev. Moreover, with both domestic cups still a possibility, managing them all plus a title hilt could prove problematic.
One area where the Manchester club undoubtedly have the edge on their rivals is experience, and that’s where Wenger must earn his stripes for Arsenal in the latter weeks of the campaign.