Arsenal stats show Coquelin is BETTER than Chelsea’s Matic

Nemanja Matić is widely considered the best defensive midfielder in the Premier League and there has been no reason to doubt those suggestions until the recent emergence of a new star at Arsenal.

Since his return from his loan at Charlton due to injuries, Frances Coquelin has cemented his place in Arsenal’s first team with some fine performances. Arsene Wenger had even admitted that he had planned to release Coquelin at the end of the season. How the last three months have changed things.

So just how good has the 23-year-old midfielder been this season? Opta-powered fantasy football game decided to put him up against the Premier League’s best, Nemanja Matić, and the results answered that question perfectly.

With fewer appearances and minutes from Coquelin the analysis in seven key areas was made via a per 90 minute basis.

Coquelin has won won 48.6% of his tackles this season to 41.6% from Matić. He is also ahead for both ground duels and aerial duels with 59.1% of his battles on the floor won to the Chelsea man’s 49.6% and an impressive 68.9% of his contests in the air successful to Matić’s 62.5% .

The Frenchman is also leading the Serb for interceptions (4.1 to 2.2), blocks (0.6 to 0.2) and clearances (5.2 to 3.2) per 90 minutes. He has also made fewer defensive errors this season.

A new star has been born at the Emirates, not for the first time – however on this occasion in a position they’ve been crying out for. The future is very bright at Arsenal.

Tags Coquelin Matic


  1. unfair stats……Coquelin has to play 25 games in order to be consider fair

    Matic is world class and big name

    1. “Matic is world-class and a big name”? Oh, please!!!

      In comparison to Francis, I don’t mean to exaggerate, Matic is rather lazy and dull. Yes, Matic is taller and weighs more, but our Cock, at the moment is preferable.

      1. To claim Coquelin as preferable to Matic pretty much declares your football insight as ‘not to be taken seriously’.

        What an idiotic thing to come out with.

        1. Lol! What do u then say about the statistical facts?

          @Charlie, should I take it seriously that you do not have a good understanding of what “statistical facts” are? By the way, I did say “AT THE MOMENT”, how could you have missed that? Le Coq keeps this up for two seasons and everyone will be acting like he’s always been world-class. If not for the fact that Matic was brought back and started doing very well, how many here knew him before his recent return?

          1. Anyone with half an eye on European football mate. He was dominant in Portugal. I read the “at the moment” part, and still think you’re a few sandwiches short to claim such a thing.

            Winston Reid was labelled ‘not good enough’ by many on here in Jan when his stats showed he was a country mile better than Mert. Except the argument was his defensive stats are naturally inflated playing for a team like West Ham. Same applies with Coquelin at Arsenal, Matic doesn’t deal with the same traffic as Coquelin because they’re more solid. Matic can absolutely command a game vs ANYONE. Coquelin can’t as proven vs Spurs and Monaco where a world class Dm would have took the game by the short hairs. He’s decent, with room to grow, that’s it.

            Matic is a few levels above Coquelin, I only hope you don’t embarrass yourself by spouting such nonsense to Chelsea fans in the pub.

            1. Just one question, wise and smart Charlie: Are statistics facts and meant to be relied on?

                1. Wow! @Charlie, you are indeed A GENIUS!!!

                  So, going by this remarkable claim of yours that statistics are not facts “AND NOT MEANT TO BE RELIED ON”, I will say that stats that suggest Messi is Better than Giroud are RUBBISH and should not be relied on. Hence, Giroud is better than Messi.

                2. Classic case of arguing with an idiot. No point as they bring you down to their level and win through experience.

                  You sir are a waste of oxygen.

                3. Ha ha ha ha ha ha!!! Lol lol LMFAO! @kickAssFan! Even the blindest of Men would know Messi is a Billion time better than OG statistically or Not.. We all have eyes and I believe they meant for seeing and observing!! In’it?

                4. Charlie,I haven’t said anything,and you seem to be getting up tight over this.Im enjoying the posts though CB

                5. Another epic contribution Luko, aren’t you bored searching for my comments to respond to?

              1. I agree with charlie here. Although these stats are preferable to le coq, they are kind of irrelevant if the two players havnt played the same number of games. All coq needs is one terrible performance and his stats will be lowered considerbly. Thus the stats on show are not a true comparrison between the players and thats a FACT. Still le coq is doing a great job for us so i stead of bickering just be greatful we finally have a DM

            2. I’m with CC on this insofar as the stats are definitely to be treated with extreme caution. Le Coq has just been busier than Matic – period. No inference can be drawn on the absolute quality of one versus the other. You would have to say NM is the better player but I cannot see why FC cannot get to his level – he has 2 or 3 years on him. FC’s stats also coincide with our latest fad of letting the other side have possession – defensive stats will “improve” if you only have the ball 30-40% of the time. But by a similar token, also partly explains Winston Reid’s good stats, he is a busy boy. His stats will also tell you he is allegedly not only better than our BFG but also the likes of Cahill, Terry and Kompany (although he may well be better than VK atm!).

              1. I get your point. Still WR might be better then those others of late, with the exception of terry.

                Still stats do seem to illustrate this position way more then the others.

                We can watch a whole game and not notice the DM that much. I’m certainly guilty of that.

          2. @KickAssfan no disrespecting!! Chelshit Pattern of play covers themself all round the pitch defensively much more than we do, so no much job for Matic or for him to get a fancy stats but when called upon to do he’s just he does it so brilliant and with so much beasty mode in him.. he will never give you that comfort when they know u are a danger Man, he just comes at you and kill it asap…. besides you can hardly point a player in chelshit that doesn’t play their life out like that would be their last game on earth… it’s as Real as it gets. Classic say so.

            1. @Classique, u mean to say Matics’s team-mates do often do his job for him and that’s why his stats are comparatively inferior to Le Coq’s at the moment? So, what then does Matic do while his team-mates are doing all that for him? At Arsenal, do you mean to say the one who does everything, in terms of defending, is Le Coq?

              @Charlie, I can’t believer you are trying to put the blame on Le Coq that we lost to Spurs. Damn it. With Matic at Chelsea, they’ve lost no game.

              1. Everybody is venerable to losing, how many times as Cheshit lost all round game with Matic and how many did Arsenal lost all round game with le Coq plus the total of games played?

        2. The only reason you say that is because matic plays for Chelsea.

          To be honest DM isn’t a position I notice and I’m sure don’t either.

          But it is a position that stats can nightlight.

          I don’t know who is better but to think one is better without looking at their games with an eye at watching them and not looking at their numbers just shows your lack of knowledge.

          Numbers showed that Schneiderlin has been the best in the prem the last few years and only now he is getting credit. Only because of the market and rumours.

          Before then ppl like you would say how dare you compare him to the likes de jong, Carrick, Ramirez, even arteta.

          Fact was he was the best because the numbers show it.

      2. To say dat le coq is better den matic is absolutely absurd !! Dere is more to football den just stats! Don’t give urself false hope !!
        I agree wid hafiz, one has to play equal no. Of games to be compared by stats.

    2. @Hafiz… It is what it is….!! You are far more realistic with your comment I like people who see it the way it is and say it just the way it is…. nothin more nothin less. Matic for me is far more better, stronger, beasty, tougher than Le Coq… in my Opinion.. we just need to be real about this things… please do not get me wrong Le Coq is a find player as well but there’s a very very very BIG difference between a Bullet and an Arrow. Classic say so!

      1. That awkward moment when the “reply” button goes missing. @Admin, don’t worry, I’m a full time veg now, at least just for now, no beefs (I’m still working on that church girl that gave me terms and conditions).

        @Charlie, I really do like Champagne, but certainly not the Charlie brand.

        1. My name is a reference to a former gunner, not at all shocked you missed it. Then again I’m explaining myself to a guy who called himself KickAssFan…

      2. Yes but they both do damage,but one is silent and deadly just like Coq you never know when he is there. CB

  2. We should not get ahead of ourselves here, we should watch him play for a whole full season first and besides we all know stats do not show the whole picture and can be misleading sometimes. Personally, i think Matic is a better defensive midfielder than Coquelin and despite his impressive showing thus far i think we still need another world class defensive midfielder to create stiff competition in that position and give us quality in depth. Getting a Xavi Martinez or a Carvalho will be ideal.

    1. Your sense is lost among many here my friend. Absolutely on the money with your analysis, although I’d go for Gonalons/Schneiderlin myself.

      1. Very entertaining up top there. I would have to side with CC on the matter, not just because you can obviously see some biases reading in the counter argument but because when said that “Matic doesnt deal with the same traffic” there was never a truer sentence said. Chelsea score one goal and they go into bunker mode whereas how many times have you seen us one two even three up and yet we still keep the game just as open as if we where the ones chasing the game.

        Stats can be very misleading, you can have 100 percent shot accuracy from 1 or two shots against someone who has 70% from ten. You can have a player with six assists but which all came from a corner against someone who has beating two to three players for each of his four assists. You can have ten interceptions from thirty attempts against a player who has six interceptions from eight attempts. You could go on all day with this stuff but the only stats that matter are wins/goals/clean sheets/points, league position and trophys.

    2. I was with you all the way El Blaze till you trawled out Martinez and Carvalho. Martinez would only take Diaby’s spot in the treatment room – good player though he is. Carvalho has been scouted to death and touted round the media for eons now, no-one has had made a serious bid for him that we are aware of – big risk, huge price tag and unproven outside La Premiera. Not convinced at all.

  3. I bet Le Coq can’t recover from .a lifethreatening tackle which could break every bone in your body and jump up like a jack rabbit and chase an opponent. halfway round the pitch and push him over like Matic screaming you’ve hurt me.

  4. we need another CDM cos of our injury records, LeCoq is the real boss there… Arteta, Flamini and Diaby there time is up, we need quality and not quantity,,
    Anyway Wenger knows best…

  5. I hope Coqu really is good.
    Lets see how Monaco, Man U twice,
    Chelsea and Liverpool go first.

  6. @misoko_gooner
    Ideally we get another DM to rotate
    with Le Coq. Diaby and Flamini must go.
    Arteta injury cover for one more season
    while Bielic is developing.

  7. we need to get 2 more DMs…..

    if Le Coq gets injured…we will have the new Dm and another for backup….

    but considering our injury record….its highly likely we will have 2 DMs injured

  8. There’s been plenty of Arsenal
    transfer news doing the rounds
    in the newspapers today with
    Arsene Wenger supposedly
    ready to sell up to four players
    in order to bring two new faces
    to the club this summer.
    According to the Metro, the boss
    could cash-in on Per Mertesacker
    at the end of the season and is
    eyeing a move for Lyon centre-
    back Samuel Umtiti as a potential
    Per has certainly been out of
    sorts lately and I really don’t see
    him keeping his first team place
    next season, so maybe it’s time
    to say goodbye to the lovable
    German and look to the future.
    Umtiti would be an interesting
    option as he’s been in superb
    form for Lyon this season. He’s
    been a rock at the back and a
    main reason they’ve been able
    to mount a serious title
    At 21, the Frenchman has plenty
    of years ahead of him and he
    and Chambers could offer real
    depth behind Koscielny and
    Gabriel next season if we were
    able to sign him this summer.
    It’s not just defence that Arsene
    is apparently looking to
    strengthen as the Express are
    reporting that Matheiu Flamini,
    Mikel Arteta and Abou Diaby
    could leave this summer to make
    room for Morgan Schneiderlin.
    Diaby’s contract is up at the end
    of the season and after yet
    another injury plagued
    campaign, it’s understood we’ll
    finally cut our loses and release
    him. It will be a real shame but
    unfortunately he’ll always be
    one of those unlucky players
    who weren’t given the chance
    to fulfill their potential.
    Flamini still has one year left on
    his deal but the newspaper
    suggests that we’ll look to sell
    the ageing Frenchman after he
    lost his place to Francis Coquelin.
    Arteta could still have a place in
    the squad if he’s willing to
    accept a bit-part role, but with
    Real Sociedad understood to be
    willing to offer him a return to
    Spain, he could also be heading
    for the exit door.
    The Express claim that with at
    least two midfielders off the
    books, Wenger will then try and
    finally land long-term target
    Schneiderlin and is willing to pay
    in excess of £20m to get his
    I think it would be wise to keep
    hold of Arteta as we could do
    with his experience in the
    squad, but if we could sell
    Flamini and bring in Schneiderlin
    then I think we might finally
    have a squad capable of
    challenging for the title.

  9. Ospina ‘best in the league by a mile’, Coquelin ‘way better than Matic’, Ozil ‘not lazy because he covers the most ground’.

    Pretty much all going to show how misleading, and ridiculous, it is to make statements based on general statistics. Really showing up the pretty dim Arsenal fan segment who come out giving the “hell yeah’s” when they see this kind of crap. Coquelin better than Matic…..OKKKKKKK

    1. Matic, Wanayama, Schnerlin, Bender, Mvilla, Capoue, Sissoko are way better DMs than Coq….

      we need to spend

    2. I’ve not seen many fans as negative as Charlie Champagne on any Arsenal forum I’ve been
      , its either his way or the highway, take a chill pill man and enjoy the game and banter a little.

      1. Do you normally reply to someone in 3rd person?

        Back up your claim that I’m ‘negative’ or keep zipped. Simply disagreeing with pure delusion doesn’t make a person negative. I think you’ll find I, along with few others on here, call things a darn sight more objectively than most. Perhaps there’s your confusion, you’re happy to lap up claims such as these while I challenge them.

        1. I actually do appreciate constructive criticism especially when its backed up with practical solutions, I’m not about that life of doom and gloom always, if the stats had pictured Coq as falling short of Matic, you’ll criticize, if not, you still criticize either ways, Wenger or the players can do no right by you, even the mouthy one, Piers Morgan is quite silent these days. Coquelin is one player that has shown tremendous fight so far, he has had a lot more defensive duties to perform than most in his position especially due to the nature of our [attacking] game, Chelsea players defend en masse consequently taking the pressure off Matic, and in case you were wondering, I bet we wouldn’t have conceeded that third goal against Monaco if Coquelin was on the pitch, that’s some of the s**t he saves us from. why cant we just enjoy it or at least you let us enjoy our players moment in the sun? Why do we always have to berate our players for no reason whatsoever? Are you saying the stats are lying?

          1. You talk a lot of sense Incarnate,been trying to get Charlie for once give credit to Coq,but all he ever says is Shniderlin this and Matic that. So glad other posts give Charlie some stick thought I was the only one. CB

            1. All I’ve ever said is Schneiderlin and Matic are better. Which is true. I’m happy you take solace in someone giving me “stick”, it highlights how truly pathetic your motives are.

          2. Berate our players? I said Coquelin is decent, with room to get better, but Matic is on a different level. How’s that berating anyone? To suggest Coquelin as superior to Matic is just nonsense.

            As far as stats go, I’m telling you it is a fact that stats are open to interpretation. It is this quality that means it’s foolish to reduce a player down to stats and make judgements. They aren’t “lying”, but they do NOT represent wholly the truth.

      2. He’s a realist, just say the iisshh as seen.. no cream rubbing to it.. simply facts..

  10. hello everyone i’m new around here but i’ve followed this website for more than a year. when i read this articles i just cant hold it anymore, i need to express my opinion. This is the reason why scumbag like adrian durham enjoy taking a piss on arsenal. because some of us just that delusional and keep overrating our own player. We always keep using stat to justify our player so that we doesnt feel that inferior when compared to other top club. Dont get me wrong Coq is really good player right now but suddenly to say he was better than matic is just too much. Unless he can keep his form until the end of season and pulverise chelsea at emirates i would keep a moderate opinion on him. right now he just another arsenal player who suddenly found his own purple patch form.

  11. players that should go on a loan

    Bellerin, Gnabry, Akromp, Ox, Zalelem, Beliek

    to free up more squad spaces

  12. Hopefully a big club will come in for Coquelin so that he can win trophies in the futtire.

    1. “Hopefully a big club will come in for Coquelin so that he can win trophies in the future.”!!!

      LOL!!! Damn it, Wenger!!!

  13. ballotelli was world class and miles beta than Oli before joining liverpool! now, not so much! the dynamics in each team is different. matic myt have his hands a little less full than our Coq hence the beta stats from our Man. substitute both players and u myt see something different or similar depending on ur perspective. but that’s definitely not to take away anything from our Coq for he’s been immensely huge for us since coming back from his loan spells.

  14. He has played half the games Matic has.
    Therefore probability dictates his performance would drop due to fatigue.

    Then factor in his ‘actual’ overall performance and How this relates to the results of his team, especially in the ‘big’ games.

    Then for how many seasons has he been doing this needs to be taken into the equation.

    Likelihood is his influence and net affect and contribution would be greater.

    The Coq meister is good but Matic he ain’t IMO(yet).

  15. Stats are great. 100% accurate at painting the full picture they are not.
    Style of play and opposition play hugely into this and with an Arsenal midfield generally underperforming (especially defensively) it leaves Coq with a lot more opportunities for snuffing play. Matic on the other hand is part of a well-oiled machine and will often have work picked up by other members of the team. Chelsea are also dominating possession…we are not.

    This also ignores other elements to the game where Matic picks up the odd goal, assist and decisive passes. Coq has yet to build up those stats.
    Coq is great. He has been phenomenal for us. The stats are currently skewing the perception of his ability slightly too highly though.

    1. I find the whole stats/empirical evidence v opinion/subjectivity debate fascinating. You invariably have to go back to the subjective opinion because people will only use stats when it supports their opinion and deride them when the stats perhaps suggest something else. If you are cute or clever enough you can de-rail most stat arguments or raise other interesting possibilities. If for example Matic is called upon defensively less than Le Coq and is part of a “well oiled-machine” then just how much is Matic being tested and how much is down to him? Reckon FC would look better with the Chelsea back 5 behind him and the likes of Ramires, Oscar and Willian all acting as water carriers around the midfield – hell I might look good.

  16. Games played really doesn’t bother me in my opinion le coque has bn brilliant and I’m so happy for him.hope he can keep this up as out chllange for top three continues…i see chambers as a backup for le coque in the summer Wenger buys centre back and striker…its quite worrying though that Wenger hasn’t played Walcott at all lately.

  17. If he gets an arsenal injury better known as hamstring or soft tissue problems we will miss him badly and will suffer as a team as a consequence.


  18. It appears the statistics about Francis and Matic have triggered a very busy morning. The debate is one that has occupied researchers for over a century now, with quantitative researchers arguing that statistical analysis of data generates objective knowledge, while qualitative researchers believe that quantitative methods do not provide rich data about phenomena. I hope my contribution will put this debate (Francis-Matic) to rest.

    First we should ask ourselves what those stats measure. I have analyzed the sqwuaka statistics a lot and noted that they measure activities of players on the pitch. I have also noted that the stats are not always absolute but are proportional in some cases, the latter helps address the problem of differences in situations faced by each player. For instance if one player faces 10 tackles in a game and wins 4, a proportional statistic is one that measures tackles win rate, which in this case will be 40%. If another player faces 100 tackles and wins 38, his tackles win rate will be 38%. This statistic therefore eliminates the problem raised by a lot of people who believe Matic is better than Francis.

    Coming to the statistics relied upon by the writer, three are proportionate while the other four seem to be in absolute terms. tackles won, ground duels won, and aerial duels won are measured proportionally, that is the percentages are expressed in relation to number of tackles attempted, ground duels attempted, and aerial duels attempted. These stats thus measure the success rates in what these players do. These stats have been purified from the noise that may be caused by such other factors as minutes spent on the pitch, formation played, and overall team performance. There is no debate as to the importance of the activities measured, to the qualities needed of a defensive midfielder. You want your DM to be very good at breaking up play, and winning tackles and duels achieves that. So even a qualitative researcher will agree that these are vital stats. Francis is better than Matic in all those, and no explanation can be offered in defense of Matic’s poor stats there.

    The other four stats get contaminated by such other factors as team formation, overall team strength, among other factors. Here there could be an argument in defence of Matic as some people believe Chelsea has better defensive stability than Arsenal. However, i would want to point out that I heard Wenger say Arsenal has the lowest number of chances created against in the league. He said this while pointing to how our defending was costing us. Opposition teams created less chances but were succeeding in scoring, while against teams like Chelsea the opposition created more chances yet would score less. I have watched many Chelsea games and noticed that every time Chelsea opened scoring it could easily have been 2-3 goals down. You can re-watch the West Ham game to see this. This statistic of chances created against therefore put to bed the argument that Matic faces less interceptions, blocks, and clearances compared to Francis. We should therefore accept that Francis is better than Matic in that regard.

    Ironically those that seek to defend Matic ignore the fact that he makes more defensive errors than Francis. If he faces fewer work load and makes more defensive errors then it should be a conclusive testament to his inferiority to Francis. I therefore argue that the stats used in this article do not lie, and if they miss any aspect which you believe makes Matic better than Francis, say it rather than hide behind the old age debate of whether stats tell the whole story.

    The problem with a number of fans is that they believe whatever rubbish told by pundits and the press, a group that does not want facts to go in the way of a good story. These groups have hailed matic as the best thing to have happened to football, despite what the stats say. They have hailed Chelsea as the team with the best defensive record despite the fact that the Saints have more clean sheets and less goals conceded compared to Chelsea. I even remember watching one EPL fanzone program, where the presenter lamented Arsenal’s few clean sheets (it had 4 or 5 then) and wanted to project the image that it was the reason why our title challenge had collapsed. To bolster his argument he sought to bring in Chelsea’s clean sheets only to realize that it had 7 clean sheets, not a big difference from Arsenal’s. He ended up saying “that is the difference which such fine margins can make”. The fact there was Chelsea’s defensive record was not as good as the presenter thought, and what they keep telling us.

    Now people have been confronted with facts that go against the official line they dismiss facts to remain with the official line. How convenient.

    1. A lot of that logic is very flawed. Firstly proportional statistics do not eliminate the noise introduced by minutes played. If one player faces 2 tackles and wins 2 of that 2 and another wins 7 out of 10 then according to your logic the former must mean he is a better tackler than the latter which may not be the case. The statistics in this scenario only take into consideration the success rate of things attempted, nothing more. We do not judge footballers solely on what they attempt to do, ESPECIALLY defensive midfielders. For example would one prefer a DM who attempted a tackle, did not suceed but disrupts the play or the conservative tackler who offers little protection to the back 4?

      Moreover general statistics would dictate the larger the sample size the greater propensity there is for a statistic to taper off. Coquelin was recalled in December after an unimpressive stint at Charlton playing Championship football. Matic has more than double the minutes he’s played in the league alone, excluding CL games and cup matches. The current statistic is horribly skewed as Coquelin has played far few games against less potent opposition. Coquelin has only played against a City without Toure, Spurs and Monaco. Matic has played against 6 of last season’s top 7 away and will likely play them at home.

      Coquelin is a great prospect but for anyone to reasonably suggest is BETTER than Matic isn’t watching these games.

  19. So again we have started this stupid comparison. Coq has proved nothing so far, lets not go overboard.

  20. i note that the stats wheelbarrow is only rolled out here on this page when the stats actually are stacked in favour of arsenal . all i know is that i have been watching football for a very long time and i have yet to see stats win any game , just sayin .

  21. Here is another game to play. Would anyone like to speculate whether Coquelin would look better as a player if he took Matic’s place in that Chelsea team and possibly how much poorer Matic might look as an individual n our first X1.

Comments are closed

Top Blog Sponsors