There is no question that Arsenal suffered in the early stages of last season due to the World Cup hangover being felt by the Germany internationals in the side. Even though our centre back Per Mertesacker retired from international football after the tournament in Brazil, he has since admitted that it took around six months to get his mental and physical state right again.
Ever since we bounced back from a shaky first half of the season, Arsenal have been doing most things pretty well. With the best Premier League form of 2015, the Gunners have also been creating and scoring goals for fun while being as mean as a miser at the other end.
Arsenal fans have been well aware of how well the young French midfielder Francis Coquelin has been playing, since Arsene Wenger recalled him early from a loan spell at Charlton towards the end of last year, because he was faced with an injury crisis. We noticed straight away because it was so unexpected and can only wonder what would have happened if Coquelin had been in the side from the beginning of the season and playing as well as he has been from the start.
I doubt that I was the only Arsenal fan to be surprised to see the name of our France international right back in the starting line-up instead of the young Spaniard Hector Bellerin at the weekend. But Arsene Wenger revealed after the game that Bellerin had been playing with some ankle problem and the boss took the chance to rest him.
If only the Premier League was decided by stats then Arsenal would be currently sitting right on top of the pile and Arsenal fans would be searching their attics for the bunting that has not been needed since 2004. Or that is what the stats compiled by Squawka.com on all the Premier League clubs would have you believe at any rate.
I know that stats do not tell the whole story by any means, but after the news that Arsenal were set to reward our Spanish left back with a pay rise and a new four year contract, I thought I would have a little look at how Nacho Monreal compared to some of the Premier League’s top performers.
How Laurent Koscielny has fared for Arsenal this season? by SE
How Hector Bellerin has fared at right-back? by SE