So no February curse this time, but does Arsenal's current dip fit into a pattern?

Gunners will be plunged into crisis if they lose to Tottenham on Saturday lunchtime

Arsenal, Danny Welbeck

Picture by: Nick Potts / PA Wire/Press Association Images

Back at the start of the season, it emerged that Tottenham's players had been undergoing triple-sessions in training so that they could "reap the benefits of the hard work" later in the season.

That has been bearing out this season, with the club second in the Premier League and successfully implementing the pressing mentality that manager Mauricio Pochettino prizes.

The question mark will be if and when they may run out of steam given their Premier League, Europa League and domestic cup commitments.

As they host Arsenal at White Hart Lane this Saturday, a positive result could both propel them closer towards league glory and a battle to the end with Leicester City, while simultaneously ending the hopes of their most hated rival Arsenal.

The Gunners, as often happens, are on the brink of crisis mode, but Arsene Wenger often finds a way of taking their feet away from the fire as Miguel Delaney reminded us on Off The Ball after the 2-1 defeat to Swansea.

That fixture meant March started off on a low point for Arsenal, whereas in the past there has often been a February curse idea bandied about, given that leg breaks suffered by Eduardo and Aaron Ramsey, losses of momentum and crucial errors occurred then.

This year has been different, the shift from late February to March has resulted in Arsenal's first consecutive defeats of the season, even though February itself has not been a cursed month on the whole with one routine win over Bournemouth and that last minute victory over Leicester City kicking things off.

And last year also saw no February curse, with just one defeat during the month. Indeed, their problems in 2014-15 originated at the start of the season when they started very slowly and played catch-up before an impressive run in the final stretch. 

But the season before that, a tough February and March saw Arsenal win just three in 10 between February 2nd and April 6th, and 2012-13 had no February curse.

Tottenham Hotspurs' Manager Mauricio Pochettino during a training session at Enfield Training Centre, London. Picture by: Adam Davy / PA Wire/Press Association Images

Peaks and troughs are a natural part of the game, even for Barcelona, who may keep winning during their dips but may put together under-par performances.

Yet Arsenal's peaks and troughs this season in the league have a loose pattern, revolving around defeats every five matches on average rather than prolonged poor results.

They lost to West Ham on Matchday 1, before losing to Chelsea five games later. Seven matches after that, in between draws with Tottenham and Norwich, they lost at West Brom. And five games after that, it was Southampton who thrashed them 5-0, before another five-game gap saw their 10-men lose to Chelsea at home.

Four games later and we're at that pre-crisis point of consecutive losses to Manchester United and Swansea. 

Tactical failings in key matches and a lack of fortitude (or leaders according to some) have also played a role. But it was interesting that Miguel's first hand view of the Arsenal loss at Old Trafford was that the attacking players looked "physically shot".

But one wonders what type of pre-season work takes place at Arsenal in terms of channeling when peaks are aimed to take place.

Martin Keown, who of course, is sharing experiences from a remove of many years before now, says, "Under Wenger there was hardly any running, it was all about ball work – though I suppose it was disguised running, as it didn’t feel so bad when you had the ball at your feet."

Whatever the case, Arsenal have tended to find a second wind results-wise in the final stretch of the past three seasons - bar last season to a degree, where they lost just once but had a couple of draws - which could be put down to the pressure being off when the title gets out of reach.

But at least, there is a level of hope for Arsenal fans, although any physical second wind would need to come immediately and before it is too late to salvage the title.