By Chris Harris

Arsène Wenger expects this season's Premier League winners to fall well short of the mammoth points totals of recent champions.

When Arsenal's 'Invincibles' completed an unbeaten title-winning campaign in 2004, they mustered 90 points over 38 games. Chelsea raised the bar even higher under Jose Mourinho, racking up 95 points in 2005 and 91 in 2006.

Manchester United were crowned with 89 points in 2007 and plundered 87 last season but Wenger expects those high standards to drop this term thanks to the number of genuine title contenders and the number of dropped points in the first half of the campaign.

"I think it will be a lower total than in recent years," said the Frenchman. "The teams who are in front at the moment have already dropped points at home. I think it will be between 78 and 85 points.

"At the moment the race is still very tight because it looks for me for the first time in six or seven years that the number of points for the winner of this league will be much lower than usual because everybody drops points against everybody.

"Liverpool and Chelsea have dropped many points at home which means the winner of this league will not get over 80 points."

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19 Dec 2008