With the final Champions League spot possibly going in any number of ways, Peter Schmeichel has thrown his hat into the ring as to who will qualify. As a former Manchester United legend, it is no surprise that Peter Schmeichel has backed Manchester United to take fourth place this season, though he feels Arsenal may well pose the biggest threat of the chasing pack.
The Red Devils overcame adversity in a hard fought clash against Leeds at Elland Road on Sunday, winning 4-2, making a four-point buffer zone with fifth-placed West Ham in the Premier League table. However, despite the gap, their position is not secure with Arsenal, Wolves and Tottenham all having played less games than United.
Arsenal could theoretically go five points above United if they were to win their three games in hand, and Schmeichel said that Arsenal have been impressive in recent times.
Manchester United Form Could Be The Difference...
Despite the good form of Arsenal, Schmeichel pointed out that United have actually banked more points – 11 from the last 15 available compared to only 10 for Arsenal – and the goalkeeping legend feels that points gained are more important that games played.
Asked who he thinks will secure 4th place during an interview on BBC 5 Live Breakfast, Schmeichel said:
‘I think Arsenal have shown some great form...But actually, on current form in the last five games, Man United is a little bit better than Arsenal. It’s hard to see but they are...I think having the points on the board rather than games in hand [is more important]..Manchester United in periods of no success is a great, great story and you will read so many things....People behind the scenes saying this is coming out of the dressing room, there’s division, all of this we know has happened time and time again...And the thing is, once you’re inside the training ground, Old Trafford, you stay close, you never tell anybody anything. So these stories, they’re literally just taken out of thin air...And it was important – really, really important – that the team came out yesterday, in the most difficult of circumstances, and showed the world that they are United, and they play as a team....It was a great win, let me absolutely clear about that it was a great win, but I still think there is a long, long, long way to go for this team....They’ve still got, in terms of football, so many more things to prove.’
We agree with Schmeichel that United pose a great threat to the London team getting last CL spot. However, there is one thing that could possibly derail that.
Whilst Arsenal have lost crucial games against 'top six' opposition, they have generally been fairly stable. United, though, have been anything but stable, flattering to deceive by looking possible title contenders, then seemingly going to disinterested passengers on the Premier League voyage.
As such, we think that United will only take 4th spot if others allow them to.
This article first appeared on London Metro News