Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Arsenal stymied by League best defense: by the numbers

All these are just Premier League numbers

9.3 – Southampton allow the fewest opposition shots per game
15 – Southampton have conceded the fewest goals in the League
3 – This was the third time a team has held Arsenal scoreless in Premier League play. (Man U, Chelsea (a))
9 – This was the 9th time the opposition took the lead first
34 – Arsenal and Southampton have scored the same number of goals
-10 – Southampton have conceded 10 fewer goals per game this season
11 – Arsenal have conceded 11 first half goals this season and scored 12
9 – Arsenal have conceded a goal in the first half in 9 games this season and scored in just 9
16.5 – Arsenal have the second best shots per game average with 16.5 (Man City is best with 17.6, Chelsea third with 16.4)
10.2 – Arsenal have the second best shots allowed per game average with 10.2 (Southampton is best with 9.3, Chelsea third with 10.3)
17.5 – Arsenal averaged 17.5 shots per game until the Stoke match
14.3 – Arsenal have averaged 14.3 shots per game since the Stoke match
8 – Arsenal only allowed a stingy 8 shots per game before the Stoke match
15.5 – Arsenal are now allowing 15.5 shots per game since the Stoke match
13.2 – Even if you take out the extraordinarily high number of shots Arsenal conceded against Liverpool (27) Arsenal are still averaging 13.2 shots conceded per game against opponents like Stoke, Newcastle, QPR, West Ham, and Southampton
11 – The opposition are scoring on 11% of their total shots this season whilst Arsenal are scoring on just 10%, this is a reversal from last season where Arsenal scored 13% of their shots and the opposition scored on just 9%… WHY?
19 – Last season the opposition only took 19% of their shots from Prime Areas
26 – This season they are taking 26% of their shots from Prime Areas
10 – Southampton today had an incredible 10 shots in Prime Areas and I bet you remember which ones missed that probably shouldn’t have (Pelle header, Pelle hit the post, bicycle kick, etc)


2 – Arsenal had just two shots in prime areas (Cazorla early and Alexis late)
5 – Five of those shots in prime areas came off crosses a deliberate tactic by Koeman
7 – Arsenal have conceded 7 goals from crosses
4 – And 4 goals from corners (basically a cross)
6 – And today they conceded their 6th goal from a fast break (2 of those were also crosses)

Coquelin and Chambers paired well today:

7 – Coquelin made 7/7 tackles
9 – Chambers made 9 ball recoveries (which often happen after a tackle)
54/59 – Coquelin completed 92% of his passes including…
13/16 – in the Soton final third, 81%, and created a shot for a teammate
43/48 – Chambers made 90% of his passes but only 2/4 passes in the final third

There were some other nominal stats like a few interceptions here and there but meh…

Sanchez had an awful match…

5 – shots, 3 on goal, 2 on goal from outside the box (weak attempts).
1 – for 7 dribbles
1 – for 7 aerial duels (not really his fault since he’s not the one pumping balls into the box for the little man to try to win)
33/40 – Passes, though 6 of his 7 missed passes were “entry” passes attempting to set a teammate up for a good chance at goal. But that one missed pass was the back pass which set up the fast break for Southampton’s opening goal

So did Rosicky (though it’s not fashionable to mention it)…

14/23 – Attacking third passes, 35/48 overall (73%)
0 – Dribbles
0 – Interceptions
1 – Tackle
1 – Shots created
0 – shots taken

Compared to Oxlade-Chamberlain?

51/58 – passes (88%)
17/20 – passes in the final third (led Arsenal)
1 – shot created (in the prime area)
2 – shots taken (if that one swept shot off Cazorla’s pass goes in, we are talking hands down man of the match performance here)
5 – successful dribbles of 7, though 2 of those were in his own defensive third it still led Arsenal
10 – Ball recoveries (led Arsenal along with Koscielny)
0 – tackles
3 – interceptions (led all players, 1 was in the Southampton final third)


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5 – The amount of minutes I turned off the game early in order to play some PS4.

Sorry, but I had the desire to kill things.


Koeman’s side were scarily efficient at getting the ball into those prime positions using deceptively simple passes and movement as opposed to dribbles or raw speed. We were very good at this last season with Ramzil on form, and we need to get back to that form soon.

Ozil was given a break at Christmas last year and Sanchez should have been afforded the same privilege this year so we don’t burn out our brightest light. Running low on both inspiration and perspiration.


yup and they did it over and over, short pass on the overlap, ball towards the penalty spot with a runner arriving and no Arsenal player nearby…

It is like they have a plan?!? what is this sorcery?

Meanwhile Arsenal seemed at a loss in the attacking third (with a few notable exceptions, Cazorla’s miss being the most painful)


Of course, if we actually put pressure on the man on the ball and were more aggressive with our own forward runs, we’d have created more chances. Actually, it was those same tactics that caused us to struggle against the bigger sides last season. The big difference between us and Southampton is that they defend as a solid unit, with a lot of pressing in the middle of the park. Meanwhile, we’ve conceded the second highest amount of goals due to individual errors in the league. As for giving Sanchez a rest, it wasn’t possible with so many players out… Read more »

remember the invincibles

11 – The opposition are scoring on 11% of their total shots this season whilst Arsenal are scoring on just 10%, this is a reversal from last season where Arsenal scored 13% of their shots and the opposition scored on just 9%… WHY? I’ll tell you why. Becasue Cazorla, Welbeck and Oxlade Chamberlain need to work on finishing. The lack of finishing ability among these players is galling. Santi has scored a few, but only one of them was from open play( a terrific finish against Newcastle), the rest have been penalties. For a class in form player, he’s just… Read more »


We missed our injured and suspended players today. How costly HFB card will be! He could have been very useful today.


We missed having a game plan today and every other match Wenger is in charge of. Yes our injuries have come at a huge cost but we didn’t strengthen when we had a chance in the Summer. That’s Arsene’s fault – no one else’s.

This season is becoming more mediocre by the day. Alexis should have been rested for the QPR match but Wenger is hellbent on running him ragged too.

Wenger hasn’t a clue. I would bench Szczeny to allow him to realise how his flappy goalkeeping royally fucked us today.

Bolarinwa Mayowa

Don’t worry, we will respond


Oh we will respond I’m sure in the next game. Only in the fourth game to witness shit like this again, of that I’m very sure. Unless our transfer business is tip top, and Wenger finally realizes the need for a strong spine. It’s weird how he won things with exactly that, Vieira, Adams, Keown, Gilberto, Bould, but he now seems to completely disregard a solid midfield complementing our skillful attackers. We are unbalanced in a sense that all our players are small technical players with no one to anchor that midfield. Everytime I watch Arsenal I feel like watching… Read more »


I think everyones been incredibly harsh on Szczesny, I’ve just watched back the MOTD highlights and from the off Kos and Mert were not at the races, things they would normally do they weren’t. So to counter this Szcz was trying to over compensate by rushing out for the first and panic clearing the second. He didn’t have confidence in his defence and it showed. I think that is also why Wenger doesn’t mention szcz in the post match interview, because he 100% knew he gambled playing a not fit Kos and possibly not fit Mert, not to mention Alexis… Read more »


I agree with you that Sczcesny needs to be dropped. That’s one of the reasons why you have a squad – when a player performs poorly, another player can come in to the team to replace him. The debate on whether Sczcesny is good enough has been rumbling on for some time and opinions are divided. The reason for this division of opinion is because it has never been clarified what the exact question is. So please allow me clarify: Is Sczcesny good enough for an Arsenal team whose main ambition is to clinch 4th place? Answer is yes. Is… Read more »


Wenger’s predictable style played into the hands of Saints. Even MC will have
problem scoring despite the former having better options.
Arsenal have many issues. Now the gk is giving a problem.
We will have to wait and see how Wenger reacts to a defen ce that
has not been properly strengthened.


with our two forwards out you can almost excuse not scoring against this soton side but with our full defence back there can be no excuses for the shambles that we were at the back.
No doubt we will here the normal statements from wenger and a procession of players over next few days. We have to concentrate, defend as a team, show we are United as a team blah blah blah.
Heard it all so many fucking times this season I’m totally sick of this team and the fight no plan no direction and absolutely no more excuses.


Look, we are disappointed with the result. What we must do is show a response in the next game.
There is great spirit within the squad and I’m convinced of the quality of my players.
We have been unlucky with injuries, we always see this after a World Cup. I can understand the fans are unhappy but there is still a long way to go this season. Judge me in May.

Third Plebeian

I no longer believe luck has anything to do with our injuries. It’s been proven we have the most injured players every season. There’s a reason for that.


Could not have put it better than the last comment from Voldermort.
Tired of the same old shit,on the pitch and from the owner,CEO and Manager


When will the frenchie realise that the fans does not want him here anymore? And do the natural thing and take the next plane back to France in May.

If he sells Podolski he better have a replacement lined up. Or is Coquelin going to start competeing with Oxlade, Cazorla for that left winger pos?

Fucking hell… absolutely clueless


When will fans like you realise you don’t speak for the entire fanbase? Thats the real question! Some are just louder than others because they seem to gain pleasure from banging the same old drum, again and AGAIN, and AGAIN…. Is Wenger doing a fantastic job? In my opinion, NO. So you want him to just sack off the job in May – OK – who shall we get in to replace him? Martinez? Seems to have the exact same deficiencies in management as Wenger to me – lots of individual mistakes and defensive lapses that cost games, and a… Read more »


You’ve not been to the emirates lately? A majority of the supporters are sick of wenger. Which is why supporters even abuse him when given opportunity.. Who can replace him? You do realise that he is one of the best paid managers in the world? £8m a year is quite a bit of money and I am reliably assured that there are lots of top managers out there that got half of that salary. It is an attractive job due to the massive amount of payment. Diego Simeone, Jürgen Klopp, Antonio Conte, Rudi Garcia. Either of these names would be… Read more »


Pretty sure the crowd sang his name in support, repeatedly, at the Newcastle game at the Emirates only a couple of weeks ago.


As support because a few fans went too far. That doesn’t mean that everyone who showed their support are pro wenger.

Nacho de Montreal is tasty

Keep nationality out of this. All of us are unhappy, some want Wenger out no matter what, some want him out if things are not fixed, some others want to keep him no matter what. But the whole issue has nothing to do with Wenger’s nationality. Do not behave like the idiot who tried to confront the manager in his box today. I am critical of Wenger’s job but he is one of the finest persons on planet earth.

AK 57

What I don’t understand is – how can we have best defensive performance one day against west ham and worst against Southampton just 3 days later. It is definitely the attitude not the talent that has to be questioned. I don’t buy into tiredness debate. Burnley has picked up the same team for 6 games running. They had 3 injuries in the first half and still manage to come from behind to draw the games against Man City & Newcastle.

YouTube Graduate

I think it’s just a case of very fine margins. I would definately say we have a better team than Southampton but, not that much. If we even are a little bit off our best at any time, most teams will punish us. I think that goes for most teams in the league. Seems like we have more and more games where we are not at our best. Perhaps due to injuries. (and players returning from injuries.)


Didn’t we score against ManU? I vaguely remember Giroud scoring a stunner.


Was about to point that out. Arsenal scored against ManU. So, effectively, only 2 teams have held us scoreless!

Gunner pundit

2- Minimum number of players I would like Wenger to invest in (cb and cm).


2- Minimum number of players I (and everyone else) would have liked Wenger to have invested in at the last transfer window (cb and cm).


~648 – the number of kilometres Arsene Wenger has back to his hometown of strasbourg if he fails to buy what we need in this window.


Hi Tim,

I would imagine that it would require quite a lot of work to get hold of such stats, however I would be very interested to see a distribution of the “number of our un-interrupted passes in one go” in the final third, for match-time intervals of your choice.

Always appreciate your work.
Many thanks


We scored against United


Correct. The only previous non scoring league game was at Chelski.

The BearMan

The simple truth is the squad did not turn up today. It appears they went on a sight seeing tour and mentally attended a fun match with the locals with a bag of peanuts at stake.

The trouble is Southampton did not play great football today, but worse yet Arsenal was rubbish in all departments.

Mr. Bould where is the defence. Time to stop hiding behind Wenger’s skirt.


Bould might as well be a mannequin. Arsene surrounds himself with ‘yes men’ because he knows best.

Ray from Norfolk, Virginia

We were not scoreless against Man U, even though the goal was deep in added time. I still thought the defense looked oddly bad overall, but we had no attacking spark with Alexis tired and Rosicky sub-par for the day.

The BearMan

Maybe we ought to look at the wider picture? Perhaps it would be better if we joined the rest of Europe and have a break during the Xmas holidays. Three matches in this period could be a bit to much, with players ability to recover.

Then there is challenge of CL, FA Cup and international duties. Now we expect the team to step it up even further as we approach the business end of the season.

Diaby`s Glassware

‘Wanyama is like a man playing with boys” the commentator missed “confused boys” i was just amazed at how we approached the 90th minute, still passing instead of throwing balls into the box…we were outplayed handsdown. The worst team performance this season. Otherwise it was a happy new year till i saw Szczesny playing at leftback. Now we just realise how big that stare from Giroud was…Happy Transfer Window


Throwing balls into the box with Sanchez up-front against Fonte and Gardos? Legit strat man. Do you even win on Football manager?


we haven’t played a convincing game yet this season. from day one wenger has managed to set the team up in a way that makes the collective whole worse than the sum of it’s parts. i’m more surprised when we win than when we lose these days. what’s worse is that it’s not even good football to watch. some of the performances, today included, should not be tolerated at a club like arsenal – but, we go on and no one is held responsible and nothing changes and it’s a fckn joke. we desperately need to replace per, arteta and… Read more »

The BearMan

The day after yesterday’s horror show. The mind is a little clearer. I hope I did not cause offense with an earlier comment. If I did, I do apologise. Like all Arsenal fans, we want to see our team do well. It is painful watching players that has talent make a comedy of errors. Should the team suffer a defeat, at least not for mistakes we ourselves make regularly. LoL I want to see our defence coach on his feet on occasions, beckoning to players n signalling to players to step it up. However, as much as I feel we… Read more »

obvious stater

I’ve changed my mind about Scz. Even Schmeichel would look shit surrounded by that bollock. The Pelle header that hit the post – Per got rolled like a sausage, so easy, he is such a pussy? Can’t think of another word for it. The first goal – What is Kos doing, just clear it, then after scz comes out, Kos just wanders around. And what the fuck is Per doing. Slower than a snail in mud. Second goal – again panic all around so scz just shit his pants and did a random kick. But he is lying on the… Read more »


Why was Sczcesny embarrassingly sipping his drink 2 seconds after conceding the second calamitous goal?
Made himself look like more a dickhead.

Diaby`s Glassware

we should use crosses in those damned periods when we`re pressing not pass around like it`s the 15th minute…i don`t think you get it though..i don`t think Akpom is a 5 footer or is there any alternative when our passing was sterile?

Been watching too long?

i am surprised that no one has mentioned one of the most frustrating things about yesterday’s debacle. The repeated PM4 back pass to GK followed by an aimless punt up field which was lost (from memory) every time. To do the same thing over and over again and expect a differnt outcome…. Yet from the bench, nothing!


Like we have giroud and welbeck upfront knowing that we will win almost every ball.

Man Manny

By the numbers: 5 – The number of teams that have a genuine stake on third and fourth (United, Soton, Arsenal, West Ham, Tottenham). Liverpool is left out deliberately – they are the weakest of the bunch. 110 – the percentage Arsenal players need to give in the remaining games if they hope to play in CL next season. 2 – The minimum number of signings NEEDED this winter transfer if we are to make that cut. It is no more an issue of not finding the players; we must pay over the top if need be. 75 – the… Read more »


1 – New manager
2- New defenders (Per needs replacing and we need another for cover)
1 – New defensive coach


Chambers had a part to play in this performance. Obviously the back five were way below par but as the deepest of TWO holding midfielders he’s got to protect the edge of the box better. Hope he can prove himself to be a reliable dm option as he develops his game, but looking at this game alone it doesn’t look too promising.
PS 7am I think there’s a typo with your Soton stat I believe it’s not 10 less goals conceded “per game”


Its frustrating to think that Giroud would have made a difference. We made them look better than they are. Arsenal fans need to calm down with their attitude towards Wenger. Be critical, but be diplomatic and civil.

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