BEST TEAM: ARSENAL
Do not let the 6-3 defeat by Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium about two weeks ago cloud your opinion of Arsenal.
The early-season pace-setters have since recovered with seven points from three matches to go into 2014 top of the Premiership table. Well, they may not look outright favourites to clinch this season's crown but neither have any other Premiership team.
For all the hype about Man City, the fact remains that they have so far underachieved with the most powerful squad in the top flight.
Chelsea's tenacity has been admirable but, on paper, they should have already taken advantage of the numerous slip-ups by the frontrunners.
Liverpool, for all the talk of a revival, might have created history by slipping from first place on Christmas Day to fifth on New Year's Day.
Few expected Arsenal to mount a serious title challenge this term, let alone head the standings at this stage.
That they have done it with Olivier Giroud as their only real striker makes their achievement all the more impressive.
Arsenal have the best Premiership defensive record, alongside Everton, conceding 18 goals in 19 matches.