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.
These stats award points for various factors to give an overall score based on the scores for attacking, defending and possession and the table makes for interesting reading. Despite Arsenal not being top in any of the three categories, we are good in all of them and our total of 9,302 points puts us clearly ahead of Man United on 8,589 then Man City on 8,438 with Chelsea in fourth on 8,222. Then there is a huge drop back to Liverpool and the rest.
What I find interesting is the way the factors show which teams are good at what. The Gunners are second only to Southampton in our defensive stats and we are second only to Man City on the attacking side of things, but when you look at our possession it shows that Arsenal are easily the last of the big four teams.
Our score of 1,156 is just over half that of the top team Man Vity and this just highlights the changes made by Arsene Wenger and the players this season. It used to be that Arsenal would always dominate possession but we were often accused of not using it well enough, playing lots of passes, making pretty patterns while failing to really penetrate the opposing team.
It is clear that Wenger has made a fundamental shift, seen most clearly in the big games where we have done so much better. With Coquelin bossing the midfield and protecting the back four we can now be more direct and can also play on the counter attack a lot better. And with the likes of Giroud, Cazorla, Ozil and Alexis bombing forward, this tactic is really paying off.
Who needs the ball eh?