Nine points from five games - including a win at Liverpool and a come-from-behind draw at City - have made for a promising start to the season at Arsenal, but Lee Dixon isn't wading into the Gunners quite yet. Here's why...
"The first five games have thrown up some undoubted positives – with that stingy defence top of the list for me – but there are enough doubts and concerns to take a watching brief, even with a back price of 9.617/2 available."
Arsenal have made a promising start to the season but let's not get carried away - it's far too early to make any bold pronouncements about a 14th title win for my old club.
The first five games have thrown up some undoubted positives - with that stingy defence top of the list for me - but there are enough doubts and concerns to take a watching brief, even with a back price of 9.617/2 available.
Chief among them is the future of Theo Walcott, whose contractual wrangles are a distraction when the club is looking settled and ready to put together a nice run of early season results.
Ironically, given the Gunners' slight goalscoring struggles, Theo could end up being a decisive figure this season - if he gets his wish and starts playing upfront.
In many ways I sympathise with the England international. Signed in 2006, and played largely on the wing ever since, he seems to have hit a plateau out there. I think he's served his time as a winger and I can't see him getting any better in the position. He's frustrated; rightly so, perhaps.
But, for me, you try your best, and if you're picked then great. More importantly, you play wherever the managers says and you keep your negotiations private.
In Arsene We Trust, reads the banner. I just wish the players would start to do the same.
On a positive note there is a lot to like about the team away from Theo.
The issue when talking about title winners is pretty simple: can they put the ball in the net, can they keep it out at the other end and do they have the habit of winning when not playing particularly well.
Three clean sheets in five games suggests few problems at the back, but the lack of a reliable goalscorer is clearly a worry. We'll have to wait and see about winning when performing badly.
I do sense a change in Arsenal this year. They have always been attack-minded under Arsene Wenger and with a Robin van Persie or Thierry Henry on the pitch - two of the finest strikers in Premier League history - that philosophy generally served the club well.
But critics could quickly point to a lack of recent honours, and it might just be that Arsene has realised there are two ways of playing the game. I suspect Steve Bould has something to do with that, and I'm so pleased to see him playing his part in what could be another great Arsenal defence.
Player-wise, there are a few standout performers so far. If he can stay fit, Abou Diaby will be very influential, but that's a huge if. In the past he's looked like he's made of biscuits and countless matches have been missed through injury. Of the new arrivals, Santi Carzola has been a major influence. Teams are scared of him, and drop off the Spaniard, which makes chances for the rest of the team. Three goals in five games is a very promising start for Lukas Podolski who has shown signs of being a special player.
He's certainly reliable, which is not something we can say of Olivier Giroud yet, though I don't think we can judge him now. Let's reassess after 15-20 games. I like the Frenchman and I definitely see promise there - I hope he fulfils it. The team definitely needs a regular goalscorer is needed. That may or not be Theo, of course. We will have to wait and see.
And that's something we'll have to do with the team. Arsenal have got nine points now, we'll know how serious the challenge is come January when the fixtures are piling up, it's freezing cold and they're still putting results together. That's when we'll know we've got a title challenge on our hands.