According to the former Chelsea and current Arsenal goalkeeper Petr Cech, long-term injuries kicked Arsenal out of a potential title race.
Cech says it is a ‘strange’ reality that other clubs also had to deal with injuries but they didn’t have to suffer for such long periods of time.
With 12 points behind the champions, Leicester City and 2 points off the 2nd placed London rivals Tottenham, Arsenal will face the bottom placed Aston Villa at the Emirates on Sunday.
Securing only one point would guarantee a top-three finish in the 2015/16 premier league table for the Gunners. Although all of these despite lengthy absences for Danny Welbeck, Jack Wilshere, Tomas Rosicky, Santi Cazorla, Francis Coquelin, Santi Cazorla and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.
According to The Sun Petr Cech told Arsenalplayer: “If you have so many important players out with long-term injuries, it does give a chance to everybody else but it can hurt you at certain times.
“If you have seven games in 21 days and your opponent has had six days off to prepare, you don’t have the advantage of rotating players.
“I thought we did so well most of the time to be able to cope with that but unfortunately in the end we lacked a bit of energy in February and March when we dropped points. This is where the difference was made.
“Overall, it’s been a good season, not one you would look back on and call a brilliant season but there were a lot of positives and things to build on.
“Hopefully, we can step up and have a great season next year.”
Cech also said: “It was a very strange season in a way.
“If you look at the number of injuries we had, it is not a big number compared to previous years or compared to other clubs. It’s not a big difference but unfortunately for us, every time we’ve had an injury, it’s been long-term.
“We had a great squad at the start of the season. Danny was coming back, Jack was coming back, and it was a very strong group.
“Unfortunately, Jack got injured right before the start of the campaign, Danny had the same problem, Tomas had the same problem, and these were all long-term injuries. Santi and Alex became long-term injuries too.”
After last winning the Premier League in 2014, the closest Arsenal came to winning it again was the second place.