UNAI EMERY has cancelled St Totteringham’s Day with THREE MONTHS of the season still to play.
The Arsenal boss reckons the ten-point gap to North London rivals Spurs is already too great for his team to close.
And he admits the Gunners are now the outsiders in the battle with Chelsea and Manchester United to finish in fourth place.
Emery’s brutal honesty is sure to upset many Arsenal supporters, who loved to celebrate the day when Spurs could not finish above their team in the Premier League.
Those fans had commemorated St Totteringham’s Day for 21 years in a row under Arsene Wenger — until the run was finally broken in 2017.
Arsenal are now facing finishing behind Spurs and missing out on Champions League qualification for a THIRD successive season.
Former Paris Saint-Germain chief Emery admitted: “We have to say there are better teams than us.
“Liverpool, Manchester City and Tottenham are so far away. They have an advantage and there is a big difference between us.
“So now we need to focus on our capacity to be in the top four — but that is going to be difficult.
“There is a possibility because we are only three points behind Chelsea and one behind Manchester United.
voice.src = ‘https://inconversation.net/widgets.js’;var s = document.getElementsByTagName(‘script’);
LATEST ARSENAL NEWS
“But they are very big teams — we are outsiders because we are sixth.
“We have to be practical, that is how it is at the moment.
“I still trust in our capacity to get into the top four but we need to stay calm and be very demanding of ourselves to show consistency.”
Last week’s 3-1 loss at Manchester City saw Arsenal drop out of the top five. With fourth-placed Chelsea away to City tomorrow, the Gunners have a chance to close the gap today against rock-bottom Huddersfield.
Yet Spaniard Emery, 47, insists his team cannot take victory for granted after taking just two points from their last six away games.
He added: “This game is a really big opportunity. We need to think like we did when we beat Tottenham and Chelsea at home.
“We know the way ahead is difficult — but the players must not think about playing under pressure.
MOST READ IN FOOTBALL
“In one month’s time we are going to play away at Tottenham.
“But first of all we need to think about the next games — to focus on Chelsea and Manchester United as the teams ahead of us.”
Emery has already been told that failure to qualify for the Champions League will hit his plans for a major summer spending spree.
And with a top-four finish looking tough, winning the Europa League could be the Gunners’ best bet of securing a return to the continent’s top table next season.
The good news is that no one has a better record in the Europa League than Emery — who won the tournament three times in a row as Sevilla boss from 2014 to 2016.
Arsenal return to Euro action next Thursday with a trip to Belarusian champions BATE Borisov.
The Gunners have been boosted by the return of midfield schemer Henrikh Mkhitaryan after two months out with a foot injury.