Monk: Arsenal will challenge

Monk is preparing to take his Swans side to the Emirates on Monday Night Football where the Gunners can remain on course for their highest Premier League finish in 10 years with a win.

Although Chelsea clinched the title last weekend with three matches to play, Wenger’s side have been the form team in 2015, taking 37 points from the last 42 available as well as reaching the FA Cup final for the second successive year.

And while Monk reckons Arsenal players and staff will probably regret a slow start to the season given their form since January, he believes they will soon have a side capable of challenging for more top honours.

He said: “People will talk about certain aspects of their play and what they need to improve but the squad Arsene is building is going to be a force in the next couple of years.

“They seem young enough and good enough players to make that next step and looking from the outside they seem a squad who could develop into title contenders.

“They’re finishing the season strong and have done since the turn of the year.

“I expect they’ll be a little bit disappointed they didn’t start the season the way they’re finishing it. Maybe they could have been a little bit closer to Chelsea.

“But they’ve had a fantastic season. There’s a talented squad there with real depth as well, especially the attacking options they have.???

Arsenal need to win to keep the pressure on Manchester City in the race for second but Swansea head to north London in confident mood, with back-to-back wins over Newcastle and Stoke having consolidated eighth place and secured a Premier League club record of 53 points.

The Swans also have a decent record at the Emirates. Last season Monk’s men managed a 2-2 draw at Arsenal in one of his first games in charge and two years ago a Michu double gave Swansea a 2-0 victory.

“You always expect them to be strong and their home record has been exceptional,” Monk said.

“It’s an arena which can be extremely tough and we expect that, but it’s also one where we’ve done well in the past.

“I want my players to go to these types of arenas and play these sort of teams – it’s a chance for them to express themselves.

“We’ve proven this season we can handle those situations and let’s hope we can do it again.”

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