Posted on September 14, 2018 by ADMIN

What the early stats tell us about Arsenal’s Top Four chances

Too many chances against Arsenal are succeeding by Tom

As the premier league table starts to take shape with Chelsea, Liverpool and Man City making up 3 of the top 4…and the season’s first international break passing…it is a good time to review how far Arsenal have come under Unai.

In the reality of the table, Arsenal sit 9th and 4 points off the top 4. But the work required can best be described by seeing how we have fared against 2 top 4 contenders and 1 newcomer and 1 premier league staple.

Firstly, the facts of the league so far. Top 4 has an average of 9.75 goals for and 2.5 goals against.

To be a top 4 team – based on last season’s stats, Arsenal will require to score an average 83 goals and concede 32.25 goals. But so far arsenal haven’t met the standards required.

Stats based on first 2 games
40% possession
4.5 shots on target
9.5 shots on target against

3rd and 4th game
71% possession
10.5 shots on target
4 shots on target against

Together that works out at 53.5% possession, 7.55 shots on target and 6.75 shots on target against. At 6.75, that over 38 games is 256.5 shots on target against – While at 7.53 sot, over 38 games is 286.14 shots on target for. What does these figures mean? For every 13 minutes and 33.333… seconds per game we are conceding a chance. Of that time, the chance of conceding a goal is 42.10%.

Of goals for, almost 12 minutes per chance created.

But the concern is defence, or more so defending as a unit.

Of the 8 goals conceded, 6 have come inside of our box. 5 goals have come from build up play from a wide position.

What is rewarding (if it can be seen as this) is the fact that chances from opposition have been created from our own errors.

But bringing down the % of ‘chances against’ is key, regardless of if some are self inflicted. Giving away 3.37 chances a half is too much. That for me needs to be halved to somewhere between 1.5 – 1.7 chances a half if you want to win the league, but for Arsenal right now; it needs to be around 2 or 3 PER game – (if it is indicative we are creating 3.76 chances a half then the chances against needs to drop!!!) We need to be creating 3 chances for every 1 given up. Not be trading 1 for 1.

So how do we do this? Our philosophy of football isn’t too different from the Wenger ideology. The high press and passing from the back is the new ingredients. Unai will require the season to get the players doing what he wants, but as soon as he mellows to the players and compromises (as life tends to honour us with) – his ideas stop working. But it’s safe to say with the high line and Koscielny leaving/retiring at the end of the season – along with our options of Mustafi and Sokratis not being the swiftest across the grass, there is a good chance new defenders could be eyed in the next window.

At the moment no one is telling (for example) Bellerin to sit back, or even Bellerin telling the winger to sit back… communication isn’t yet at its full swing from back to front. Lack of talking I feel is a big factor of why we are conceding goals.

Passing the ball around to attack requires movement. Defending without the ball and trying to win it requires orders and discipline – best achieved with talking to one another. This leads me to defend the choice of Cech and Xhaka’s selections. Both players are big personalities, both highly regarded within the squad and both like to be vocal with such status within the squad. What we want is them to develop and get better under these new ideas.

Man City, Man United, Chelsea, Liverpool and Spurs have one good keeper. We have two. It’s important we maintain that level across the board.

In centre midfield we have Elmeny, Xhaka, Gendouzi and Torreira. It’s important we keep the standards high here too, and that means Xhaka developing into these new ideas. Torreira being allowed to slowly settle is a good ingredient because long term he will be expected to be a first teamer. Guendouzi will get tired (mentally more so then physicially) and injuries will occur… I just don’t understand why many fans want our first 11 to be set today.

We have a squad, and to get the best out of it and learn who is a part of the new thinking we have to allow everyone the chance. This is a far better long term plan to get into the top 4 before the climb to the summit.

With Newcastle (A), Everton (H) and Watford (H) we can expect a scrap. And with also Vorskla (H), Brentford (H) and Qarabag (A) inbetween – we can be sure to start to see more of the names we all been discussing in the starting 11.

Premier league is back, and more work is still required and with the games coming thick and fast. It took Pep’s Man City one season to win the league and Klopp’s Liverpool three seasons to start suggesting they are potential title contenders.

It may take Arsenal longer. But it’s soon time to say we should be expecting to see results or improvement on the pitch…And that starts with goals against!!

Tom

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18 thoughts on “What the early stats tell us about Arsenal’s Top Four chances

  1. gotanidea

    Great article. Instead of waiting for the perfect through balls that almost never come, the players should have worked harder with Emery’s high pressing system

    Forcing the opposition to make mistakes by pressing them harder is better than hoping for half-baked chances that are obvious for the opponents

    Lacazette did that well in Cardiff and I wish to see it again tomorrow

    1. Break-on-through

      Did anyone already know that G Xhaka has played more forward balls into the final third over everyone in the league going right back to the beginning of last season. I wouldn’t have been aware only I read it on Goal.

      1. gotanidea

        No idea about Xhaka’s forward passes against other EPL players

        But he was the best in making forward passes at Arsenal last season, created them a lot more than the other Arsenal players, according to Squawka.com

  2. ks-gunner

    One step a time to climb the mountain ahead of us. We are far from being on the top but such things need time and patience. As long as i do see progress i will be happy.

    This team currently lacks quality and of course a true leader in the team. Kos is one of our old guys and our captain, but i think that has made up his mind already in leaving the team. We need to be liker Liverpool or hell like Spurs. Try to get our self some lucky buys, and if needed also expensive ones to secure our future progress. January transfer market is the time of action. Let see what happens.

  3. aubamezzette

    DM is d position
    DLP, DESTROYER,BWM are d roles.
    PIRLO, XHAKA, ARTETA of arsenal, JORGINHO ARE DMs BUT THAT DOESNT MEAN THEY MUST BE DESTROYERS…
    for them to succeed they must have a destroyer or BWM BESIDE THEM eg KANTE, GATTUSO,MARCHISIO, ALEX SONG, … THESE PLAYERS DONT HAVE TO PLAY FROM DM POSITION, THEY CAN BE CMs (in this case BWM) .. POSITION AND ROLE ARE DIFFERENT.
    ALTHOUGH SOME DMs CAN COMBINE MORE THAN ONE ROLE EFFICIENTLY.. eg BUSQUETS IS A DM POSITIONALLY BUT HE IS A GOOD DESTROYER N ALSO A DLP, XABI ALONSO IS ANOTHER , SCHOLES TOO, ETC. KANTE PLAYED BOTH AS A DESTROYER N A BWM .
    the same applies to CM, THERE ARE CMS THAT JUST WIN BACK POSSESSION PRIMARILY, CALLED BWM, BUT THEY DO IT FROM THE CM POSITION, SOME ARE BOX TO BOX , SOME DLP from d same CM ( this where Cazorla differs from PIRLO) ,SOME ARE BALL CARRIERS EG MODRIC, ROSICKY, CAZORLA…
    also some can combine more than one role in a game .eg MODRIC N CAZORLA AS A DLP AND BALL CARRIER , KOVACIC AS BALL CARRIER N BWM N B2B ,
    THIS ALSO APPLIES IN ALL POSITIONS, NOT ALL GK ARE SWEEPERS AS WELL LIKE NEUER, NOT ALL AMS ARE TERQUARTISTAS OR ENGANCHES OR EVEN PLAYMAKERS.. eg look at ERIKSEN n DELE ,totally different roles based on their skill set. NOT ALL STRIKERS ARE POACHERS PRIMARILY LOOK AT BENZEMA WHEN HE PLAYED WITH RONALDO, A DEEPLYINGFORWARD, FIRMINO IS A DEFENSIVE FORWARD N ALSO A DLF, U DNT XPECT THEM TO GET AS MANY GOALS AS A POACHER LIKE KANE, LEWY, LUKAKU

      1. aubamezzette

        wrong post… was talking about d debate of Xhakas role n position n why he needs a destroyer beside him.

  4. Innit

    I predict the Top 5 will be:
    1. Man City
    2. Liverpool
    3. Spurs
    4. Chelsea
    5. Man Utd

    But HOPE we finish in the Top 4

  5. Sue

    I’m hoping the spuds lose a few now as that drink driving disgrace will be out for a little while now & replaced by Vorm (who is crap!)
    A hard fought 3 points for us tomorrow will do nicely…..

    1. Kenny Rolfe

      Good ol’ Sue, amongst all these messages of analyse and stats, all thinking their worthy of being on the debate and a candidate for the next Arsenal manager, a simple post to the point and just getting behind the side, as always.

  6. barryglik

    95% of goals are scored
    from less than 25 metres out.
    Why waste energy pressing
    on half way leaving holes behind nearer goal?
    Forget the 100 pass goals and you tube wonder goals.
    Most goals come from corners, free kicks, hopeful crosses
    tossed into the mixer which fall luckily to an unmarked poacher
    who toe pokes home or deflects a header from 5 metres out.
    Be more direct in attack and park the bus in defence.
    Why over complicate things?

  7. Declan

    Fu*k me, talk about damned lies and statistics, I bet you’re fun at home. Isn’t it a bit early to start dissecting Emery’s tenure? I’ve not checked the stats myself but read recently the record this year after 4 games is the same as last year after 4 games . Lennon said, Give Peace a Chance. Declan says, Give Emery a Chance.

  8. Declan

    Flip me, talk about damned lies and statistics, I bet you’re fun at home. Isn’t it a bit early to start dissecting Emery’s tenure? I’ve not checked the stats myself but read recently the record this year after 4 games is the same as last year after 4 games . Lennon said, Give Peace a Chance. Declan says, Give Emery a Chance.

  9. Kenny Rolfe

    Watching the debate at the moment and listening to Tim Sherwood talking about his beloved Tottenham. He’s just come out with “how well Tottenham have done lately including coming second to Leicester in the Premier League title race”. Just wondering if he was here for the last game of that season

    1. ozziegunner

      Tom, thank you for your detailed analysis. Arsenal is crying out for on field leadership of defense; 2 words Stephan Lichtsteiner as RB and captain. Torreira must start along side Xhaka (will bring out the best in both).
      I agree with barryglik that Arsenal must be more direct in attack.

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