Graeme Souness warns Arsenal of ‘real tests’ to come as he assesses Gunners’ title aspirations after north London derby win

Graeme Souness warns Arsenal of
Graeme Souness warns Arsenal of 'real tests' ahead

Former Premier League footballer Graeme Souness has warned Arsenal of testing times ahead despite a brilliant start to the 2022-23 campaign.

The pundit believes that while Arsenal have improved leaps and bounds from last season, the north London outfit will need to secure victories over the likes of Liverpool and Manchester City to compete for the title this term.

"The real tests will be against Liverpool and Man City."Graeme Souness remains sceptical about Arsenal's title credentials despite north London derby win #AFC…

Speaking on talkSPORT, the retired Scotland international said:

“I think it’s upwards and onwards for Arsenal, I think they’re playing a brand of football that we’re all enjoying."
"But I still come back to it, the real tests will be against Liverpool, Man City. And that in itself is a compliment because if you were talking about this a year ago, there would be seven or eight teams you could rattle off as a test for them.”

Arsenal have kickstarted their Premier League campaign with seven victories from eight fixtures. Manchester United put an end to the Gunners' perfect run after securing a 3-1 victory over the north London outfit at Old Trafford on September 4.

However, Mikel Arteta's side quickly bounced back with a 3-1 victory over their north London rivals Tottenham Hotspur and retained their position as the league leaders.

Sharing his thoughts on the Gunners' title prospects in the English top-flight this season, Souness continued:

“Now, the real test for them, where they want to be – which is challenging for the Premier League – the real test is when they play Liverpool or Man City, which is imminent. By saying that, and only naming two teams, that’s a real compliment to Arsenal, how far down the road they’ve traveled.”

Manager Mikel Arteta comments on Arsenal's title prospects following North London Derby victory

The Gunners boss was asked about his team being at the top of the league table in a post-match press conference. He said (per the club's official website):

"It’s great always looking at it and seeing the club where it is, in this position. It’s great, it gives you a great feeling obviously. But we are focused. It is a really hungry and humble team, believe me."
"We know where we are. There is nothing that we have done yet, and there are still a lot of things to improve, and that’s the direction that we are taking."

When asked whether the Gunners should be considered serious title contenders, the Spaniard said:

"I’ll leave that to you guys, honestly. We are just at the start, and we are really happy with where we are, and understanding that you cannot control [everything]. Because emotion is related and the table says what it says but it is not something that we look at."
Energy. Commitment. Passion.We did this together, Gooners ✊

Arsenal are set to face Liverpool at home in the Premier League on October 9.

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Edited by Ritwik Kumar
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