Arsenal might have missed the ticket for European football through the Premier League train
Arsenal drew with Burnley 1-1 to shatter their hopes of playing football in Europe next season to pieces thanks to a moment of madness from Xhaka. Cutting the branch in which they are sitting on has become mainstream at the Emirates Stadium.
In the last match against Leicester, they failed to close down Youri Tielemans, who gave his side the lead against the Gunners. In the match before that, Dani Ceballos first presented Benfica with a free-kick from which they scored. Then he provided the second goal to the opposition on a platter. In the game against Wolves, they completely dominated the whole first half, still the half ended with a one-each score line with Arsenal a man down.
Arsenal players or fans thinking about playing Champions League football through a top four finish in the Premier League doesn’t seem rational. Poor finishing, ridiculous defensive mistakes and the lack of inventiveness when it has come to creating chances have all contributed to one of their most awful seasons in their history!
The Gunners now have only 38 points from 27 games. Although Arsenal fans would argue that their team is better than this, they certainly deserve to be where they are. At least all the underlying statistics tell so. The Gunners have earned 1.41 points per match, which when placed over the whole campaign gives a grand total of almost 54 points. No one knows where Arsenal will finish this season with that points tally.
But comparing it with previous seasons shows a grievous picture. Last season, with a points tally of 54, they would have been level with Sheffield United at ninth. In 18/19, it would have been eighth. Seventh and eighth positions in 17/18 and 16/17 respectively. What does this show? It shows that Arsenal have been a mid-table team. The Arsenal faithful should stop criticizing the referees. Arsenal dominate matches but they don’t seem to find the right key to unlock the opposition. And as they say, “the fault does not lie in our stars, but ourselves.”
The landscape altered slightly in Unai Emery’s first season in-charge, where he guided the North-London side to fifth on 70 points, missing out on Champions League football by just a point, after the Gunners won just one of their last five matches.
Coming back to the current climate, the Gunners are the 13th best team in the Premier League defensively, with their tackles, interceptions and shots allowed per game giving them a rating of 6.65, according to whoscored. Their position remains the same, when the statistics are changed to the attacking category.
They have scored 35 goals and kept eight clean sheets, which is 11th and eighth best in the league.
Arsenal fans would beg to ask the question, when will their “transition period” end?
Although Pep Guardiola said that Arsenal are a few signings away from competing for the title, first and foremost and regardless of the players they have, Arsenal need to stop shooting themselves in the foot.
Until that becomes a reality and not just a want, it would be better for the Arsenal faithful to focus at other, more important stuff in life. Because the football ain’t good, is it?
Connect with the writer via Instagram/Twitter: @yarsenal09