Sometimes a football match comes down to just a few small differences. For example, in this match against Everton, both teams created 2 big chances in this game and Everton scored both of theirs while both of Arsenal’s were saved.
Further, the differences in the top players were small but important: Arsenal’s most creative player was once again Alexis Sanchez. He created three chances for his teammates, including a huge miss by Özil, and ended up with zero assists on the day. Meanwhile Baines and Barkley also created three chances for their teammates and each garnered an assist.
If Özil finishes that shot or if Iwobi scores at the end of the game, the outcome here is obviously very different.
It was a poor quality match from the start. Arsenal dominated the first 25 minutes, so much that Everton didn’t even take a shot until literally the 30th minute of the match. But Arsenal weren’t really laying on the pressure and only took two shots for themselves between minutes 1-40!
Arsenal were so poor and so disjointed that they had 12, 5 minute periods where they didn’t take a single shot. Totalling 60 minutes without shots. Two stretches of 15+ minutes elapsed without a single attempt, one in the first half, after Alexis scored, and one in the second half between the 60th minute and 80th. Arsenal had the ball, they had possession, they were pressing forward, but the final ball was just inches off time and again.
Arsenal only had one shot between the 60th minute and the 90th minute. Right when we most needed to chase the game. That’s either pathetic by Arsenal or a huge credit to Everton’s defense.
The result is shot charts that look like this:
Three large flat spots on Arsenal’s chart meant that overall, Arsenal didn’t create enough and barely earned a single expected goal. Meanwhile, Everton bounced back after the Alexis goal and stayed on top of Arsenal the rest of the match, in terms of shot dominance.
In possession, Arsenal weren’t significantly better. They had a LOT of the ball but didn’t do much more with it than Everton. If we take out possession passes and only look at the attacking types, such as final third passes, key passes, and through balls, Everton matched Arsenal blow for blow in this match.
What’s especially damning is that period of possession right after the second half: comparing the two charts we see Arsenal having a lot of the ball in dangerous areas and trying to pry open the Everton defense, but not creating any shots. Sterile possession at its worst.
Coquelin gets a lot of grief for this. He’s not the most creative midfielder in the team, that’s not even a question. But he had the same number of Key passes as Granit Xhaka (0) and just one fewer than Mesut Özil (1). The real problem is that Özil had a poor game by his own standards. His only key pass was from the center circle in the 44th minute, to Alexis, for a shot from 22 yards.
All three of Alexis’ key passes were inside the 18 yard box. In case you’re curious.
Sources: Whoscored.com, 442 Stats Zone app
Ozil definitely deserves some flak for this loss. Not just for the miss, some of his penetrative passes didn’t come off today.
I felt like iwobi would have been more effective than either one of chambo or Theo.
Not worried. We were due for some bounces, blocks, and touches to go the other way.
Holiday party today. Enormously pissed. Misread score and thought we won earlier, only to watch everton take lead 5 hours later on ny time. Sucky. End of day, our away record has been ridiculously good for a calendar year. Will tomorrow look up stats for how many points weve given up away over past year and youll see its top class. Glad at least coleman scored. Silver lining for irish american arsenal fan…. lol
Interesting analysis. Often your view here comes across as a slightly perverse elevation of “stats” over what a layman’s general perception might suggest, but here … “A poor-quality match from the start” – I think you might find most (UK) newspaper reactions will hype this as classic Premier League football, but I have to agree. Arsenal allowed themselves to get sucked in to that kind of slugfest against an utterly resurgent Everton, came out second best and can have few complaints. Pretty deflating stuff. Good work Tim.
Thanks for putting the goals on the graph, it helps us understand the match a lot better.
I think it was entertaining, but I don’t think the quality of football was especially notable
Koeman seems to have wenger’s number, i think he’s unbeaten against him. He applies the same formula as Mourinho and Pochitino; don’t bother matching us technically just give us a game physically and we’ll crumble. It works a treat every time.
Our only shot on target apart from the deflected free kick came in extra time. Says it all really..
that’s a pretty facile analysis right there
I remember with the tackles, at one point I was thinking to myself, Koeman Koeman this isn’t the Southampton team. I saw a very aggressive Everton side today, definitely not used to seeing aggressive Everton sides. I miss the old School pushover Everton
I believe it was Koeman himself who said Arsenal are as easy as pie to play against if you’re physical. He’s not wrong so far.
Koeman is 5-5-2 against Wenger and has won 3 of the last 4 ties between the two teams.
Have to use the lessons from tonight against City. They’ll be out for blood after what Vardy did to them. What a difference a game makes. Win against City and it’ll be “Arsenal back on track” – lose and it’ll be “Arsenal back to back losses ruin title chances”.
It’ll be a draw. Guaranteed.
Our inability to keep a clean sheet is a worry.. That first goal was avoidable.. But.. We didn’t turn up in attack so we only have ourselves to blame.. We should be able to take city this weekend though.. Let’s just hope chelski drop hard this eve!
Get a stat about the number of aerial balls we win. It’s shocking really
There is an inverse relationship between number of aerials won and quality of the football team. More aerials = less quality and/or lower on the League table.
As an end point for tactics, aerial isnt great, true. But to bring Giroud on and not give him crosses to work with just seems counter-productive.
I thought the subs yesterday clipped the wings, crowded the ‘sterile possession’ hotspot in front of the box and left their fullbacks even freer to attack.
Look it was going to happen this season better get it out of our system and get ready for city why not try perez on the wing for the city game
A bad day at the office !
Gabriel gave the ball away far too much.
Ox yet again had the heart with no finish.
Theo left his defensive duties at home.
Ozil missed chances I would have put my house on.
Disjointed and generally played like a load of headless chickens.
Mustaffa was truly missed but I feel the team just couldn’t again deal with the aggression of their opponents. It’s not the end of the world but let’s hope they learn from this.
Interesting about Coquelin and Xhaka. I don’t get the criticism of Coquelin, before him (BC!) we were all complaining about the lack of a hard-tackling DM. Now we have that player people complain that he doesn’t pass like a Santi. Well Santi doesn’t tackle like a Coquelin. Wouldn’t it be reasonable to criticise the players who’s role it is to be creative when the creativity is lacking?
You are spot on but this is a reoccurring narrative involving Coquelin for some folks. I thought Le Coq was one of our two best players (the other being Kos) last night but hey he “will never score and does not deliver the decisive final pass” even though that is not his frigging role on a team with creative players like Sanchez and Ozil.
I would love to have a stat on how many set pieces we concede. My bottom always clenches whenever the opposition win a free kick in our half or we concede a corner.
Can’t understand why wenger plays Walcott and ox in a game away to everton I know they have speed but in games like that you need a bit of steel aswell after Christmas we should have wellbeck and perez and Sanchez up top now thats speed aswell added with determination
I can only assume he felt that players with a lot more prem exp were required tonight. But it seems he got some selections wrong as the players looked really jaded…..
Not a criticism though. Just a point of view.
I felt both the Ox and Theo did alright they would have done much better if they had the service they are used to. We lost the middle of the field comprehensively, they were extremely physical. I feel we should have tried to get them booked a little more than we did(Yes I want our players to dive!). Whatever the talk in the dressing room was I don’t think it was let’s be cunning and get one or two of these c***s sent off. I think that is what we should do against teams that play this brand of anti… Read more »
A very tough game and the toffees as perusual gave a hard defensive attacking game from missed placed passes and other counters, i feel arsene brought the subs on incorrectly as they all was strike force we needed more width with down the line and partly some central defence the game was well fought and everton goal number two was again in the box from a header oi oi come on you arsenal fc
Oi oi watching alexis chasing that ball he world class
I raally think that Arsenal was guilty of over-elaboration last night. Players like Alexis and Xhaka no longer shoot from distance. Too bad
Team v city. Ospina
Bell holding kos mon
Walcott Sanchez perez
That is bloody awful. Nice try though.