FA Cup glory came ahead of schedule for Mikel Arteta but he may need to be patient to complete his planned transformation

Guardian writers’ predicted position: 6th (NB: this is not necessarily Nick Ames’s prediction but the average of our writers’ tips)

Last season’s position: 8th

Related: Brilliant Bukayo Saka shows Mikel Arteta has plenty of talent at Arsenal | Paul Wilson

Related: Arsenal display more reason for optimism than they have had for years | Jonathan Wilson

They have retained the same colours but Arsenal are, in other ways, chameleons. First they swapped south-east London, where they were born, for Highbury in 1913. Then they became entertainers, trailblazers and innovators under the inspirational Herbert Chapman. Fast-forward half a century and they had become the “boring”, attritional but storied grinders of the 1980s and early 1990s. Now they are expected to live up to the near-impossible standards set by Arsène Wenger in the first decade of his reign, the “Arsenal way” cast as a sleek and stylish brand of attacking football that has materialised only in spurts since their move to the shiny Emirates in 2006.

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