Robert Pires says Arsene Wenger would forgo success in the Champions League if it boosted Arsenal’s chances in the Premier League.
The former France international was part of the last Arsenal side to lift the league title in 2004 – his second with the club – with Wenger’s side limited to three FA Cup successes since.
After 12 games of the current campaign the club are level with Manchester City at the top of the table with 26 points, and already have a 15-point cushion on defending champions Chelsea.
Pires believes maintaining that form over the rest of the season will be top priority for Wenger, rather than success in Europe.
“Of course [winning the title] is possible,” he told Omnisport at a charity event for Grassroot Soccer to mark World AIDS Day. “It’s plausible because it’s the goal of Arsene Wenger.
“He wouldn’t tell you that, but if he has to choose between the Champions League and the Premier League, he will choose the league because it’s more difficult to win and he is a very competitive person. You have Man City, Man United… Even if Chelsea are in difficulties, it’s tough to play them.
“You have also Liverpool and Tottenham. It’s a very tough league.”
The 42-year-old still trains with Arsenal to maintain his fitness, and he has been impressed with what he has seen from Wenger’s current crop of stars.
He added: “Physically, they feel well. Sometimes, I can see similarities with the football we were playing a few years ago: a football played with pace and fluidity.
“We are in mid-November and they are doing well but what can trouble them is the number of players who are out injured.
“The team has done well particularly in the league. I think they are a team that can win the league at the end of the season.”