Arsenal will be back
If you're a renowned club off to a bad start with a multitude of injuries and departures, and then you go to an archrival and get owned - it's not good.
No way around it - Arsenal was pasted by Manchester United at Old Trafford, 8-2. I cringe when I see a scoreline like that with my area high school teams, so I can only imagine how manager Arsene Wenger and company feel after the club yielded eight goals in a match for the first time since 1896.
With midfield stalwart Cesc Fabregas completing his long-rumored move to Barcelona and Samir Nasri off to Manchester City, obviously Wenger needs to make some big-time signings before the end of the transfer window even though that's not typically his style. And he especially needs help in defense. If England international and respected attacker Theo Walcott finished up Sunday against Manchester United as a right back, they've clearly got a problem.
But here's the thing. It's not some run of the mill club. It's Arsenal. Yes, an Arsenal that hasn't won trophies in a few years, but it's still Arsenal.
If the Yankees or Red Sox are fourth in the AL East after two weeks, do you really think they're going to stay there deep into September? I don't either.
I don't have a favorite Premier League team - for some reason, during my years following the English game, I just never picked up a favorite club and am not sure why. But I've always respected Arsenal.
It's ugly right now. But with the resources the club has at its disposal - some money to spend, a great fan base, a quality attack paced by Robin van Persie and Walcott and Wenger on the touchline, there's just no way Arsenal isn't a top-five club by the end of the year.
If Arsenal are in a relegation battle in March, I'll admit I was wrong. As bad as it seems right now, though, there's no way this form will sustain itself over time at a first-class club like that.
- Chris Lillstrung