Francis Coquelin has revealed Arsenal have reviewed last season’s failed title bid and plan to learn from it in 2016-17.
It is now over 12 years since the Gunners lifted the Premier League trophy and, despite finishing as runners-up last season, they were a distant 10 points adrift of champions Leicester.
Sitting top at the turn of the year, it appeared to be Arsenal’s title to lose but they let their lead slip and just about edged local rivals Spurs into second place.
So far it has been a quiet summer with Granit Xhaka the only big-money acquisition to play in midfield, a position where the club lost Mikel Arteta and Mathieu Flamini at the end of their contracts.
A pursuit of England and Leicester forward Jamie Vardy came to nothing and, while the Gunners have been inactive in the summer market, their traditional rivals – Manchester United, Chelsea, Man City, Spurs and Liverpool – all appear to have strengthened significantly.
But Coquelin, who is likely to be battling with January signing Mohamed Elneny for a place alongside Xhaka in Arsene Wenger’s midfield engine room, believes the Gunners are ready to challenge again.
“It was a really tight season last season and it was a strange one,” the former France Under-21 international told Arsenal Player.
“I think it was unexpected that Leicester would win it but they did terrifically.
“We’ve gone through everything we did last season, we had a strong season, but it’s going to be about details this time.
“The games all the people expect us to win, we have to win them and respond as well in the big games. I think that’s what we’ve done in the last couple of years so we have to carry on doing this.”