Thursday, February 29, 2024

Leicester City 2-0 Arsenal: By the numbers

Before the match there was sentiment among some (most?) that they would be willing to see Arsenal lose if it meant Unai Emery would no longer be the head coach of Arsenal (I was not among them, I want #EmeryOut but I can’t root for my team to lose). The first part happened, but it looks like the second will not follow immediately behind.

As things stand, it is an ugly scene at Arsenal and the goal of making the top 4 is slipping away and it is only November. It is understandable to not want to make a knee jerk decision but what is happening doesn’t look like a temporary blip of form or bad luck on results from good performances.

Leicester City 2-0 Arsenal: By the graphs

Leicester City 2-0 Arsenal: By the numbers

In the first 67 minutes before the goal:

Shots: 12 – 8

xG: 1.04 – 1.18

Big Chances: 0 – 1

Passes into the penalty area: 12 – 8

For the first two thirds of the match, it was a relatively close and even match. Leicester had a few more shots but Arsenal had had the better chance (Lacazette’s 14th minute shot). After the goal (well really after about 53 minutes when Arsenal had their last shot) the match was all Leicester.

In the final 22 minutes:

Shots: 7 – 0

xG: 0.71 – 0

Big Chances – 2 – 0

Passes into the penalty area: 8 – 3

For a team that was supposedly trying to chase the game and salvage something there wasn’t much to show for it. Emery made some attacking subs but it looked like once the goal went in all hope from the Arsenal players was lost.

Arsenal’s Top 4 odds after this result

My Projection model now gives Arsenal a 17% chance to finish in the top 4. FiveThirtyEight gives Arsenal a 13% chance and according to the betting markets it is between 16% and 20%.

Finishing in the Top 4 isn’t gone, but with each passing result things are looking more and more unlikely.

Arsenal’s declining dominance

Tim (aka 7amkickoff) on twitter pointed out another damning stat about Arsenal, looking at the number of matches that Arsenal had the better xG in their League matches going back to 2014/15:

Unai Emery has talked about making Arsenal more competitive but I don’t think that what he wanted was to be more competitive when we face teams with inferior talent and below us in the Premier League pecking order. Yet that is exactly what has happened.

Looking at both the Premier League and the Europa League Arsenal have been out shot by their opponents in 10 of 16 matches this season.

The writing is on the wall for Arsenal and with the way that Arsenal are performing it is really hard to see the massive improvement in performances needed to get back into the top 4 race coming under this manager.


Sources: Opta via Whoscored, StatsZone, 7amkickoff and my own database

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Great analysis! Thanks. Depressingly, it just confirms what many of us have realised. We on a downhill slide. News that the board doesn’t plan to take any action until the end of the season (if then) means the rest of the season is going to be really hard to watch.

Not Emery

What are you talking aboot?

I looked at the stats and we’re improving incrementally. I know it’s hard in today’s “have it all have it now” society, but we need patience with this club and the management structure.

After years of the Wenger regime, cultural change was always going to be slow with things getting worse before they get better.

Up the Arse! Trust in Unai.

Not Emery

Oh no. Wait. I had the page upside down. Oh hang on… oh we’re proper shit.

That’s it FUCK U UNAI!


Perhaps the top 4 decision can be put off until the end of January


I go from Paul Roberts to Paul and another one turns up? FS!

Michael Bolton Wanderers

The arguments for sacking Emery just keeps stacking up

Teryima Adi

This Arsenal team is abysmal. No need mincing words.


I do remember it being relatively even for the first hour although I always felt like Leicester had more of a cutting edge going forward.

However my real memory was just of us always going backwards. Perhaps this is indicative of a team severely lacking confidence but we seemed to reverse counter attack ourselves over and over, going from halfway in their half back to Leno. No one would take responsibility for attempting high risk, high reward passes.


Great Analysis but I don’t think most Arsenal fans were willing to see them lose yesterday, regardless that most of us want Emery out.


I don t understand how emery can justify those stat to the board. If its the same excuses that he gives during the press conférence then there is something i miss. And i don t understand either how our players find all of this acceptable. Our style of play look as boring for them as it is for us. And we have no spirit. Those guy are supposed to give it all when we are 2 – 0 down. How emery manage to tell everyone in the club that our situation is kinda cool ? The ambitions is gone and… Read more »


It might be a case of there’s no one out there the board thinks is better right now. Ten Haag already has said he won’t leave Ajax. Enrique supposedly isn’t ready to come back post his daughter’s passing. Allegri has the potential to just be emery part 2 while Arteta abs Freddie have literally no experience. I think that’s likely all that’s keeping emery in a job right now

Red Cannon

How ’bout if we use Freddie as interim manager until the end of the season & then use the time that buys us to find someone we really want? And if Freddie does the job better than expected, we can keep him on. Just about anything is better than continuing with this incoherent, uninspired mess. If we do continue, we’re almost certainly not going to get back to Champions’ League. We may even miss out on Europa League next year. And we’re likely to lose our 2 best players in the summer.


Niko Kovac?

Canuck Gunner

If we stick with Emery any longer, missing out on Champions league is a certainty. I expect we are more likely than not to miss out on Europa League as well. We are playing like a mid-table team under Emery and that is exactly where we will end up. Once there, it will be a huge challenge getting back to the top 4 in the near future. Sadly, this season was supposed to be getting us back into top 4 and to build a title-challenging team in the following years.


Things can go really wrong with an untried manager. Monaco were on pace for relegation when they sacked Henry. Emery isn’t the right guy but it’s a major risk handing the reigns to Freddie

SLC Gooner

On the other hand, they can go right too. See Lampard-Chelsea. It could be argued he had less experience than Ljungberg, and certainly less than Arteta.


Um Lampard managed Derby and almost gained promotion. Managers like Zidane, pep , ten Haag all at least managed reserve sides who played in real leagues.


How could it be argued that he has less experience than Freddie or Arteta? He managed Derby for a full season. That’s real experience at being “the guy”. I don’t like the Freddie answer – too similar to Solskjar at Manure. But…. we need an alternative soon. I sincerely worry about us languishing mid table.

I really hope AW gets announced as Bayern manager tomorrow so that option/discoussion point goes away.

TBH – I’d be happy with any one of Allegri, Howe or Kovac.

Not Emery

And that Mourinho gets hit by a bus so that discussion point also goes away.

(I don’t want him dead or even really badly hurt or anything. Maybe just one of his testicles gets squashed by the wheel. And he has to have an operation to fix it but something goes mildly wrong with the surgery and so after, every time he takes a piss, he pisses in his own eyes and the shame and embarrassment and constant pink eye keeps him out of management for 5-10 years. Not a lot to ask I don’t think)

Dr Oo

He was manager at Derby, Freddie and Arteta have never managed


Freddie is intelligent and a well respected young coach. I don’t get all this negativity about handing him the job instead of the lunatic in charge. It can’t be any worse, the players respect him, he was a gutsy player and knows the football we need. I’d love to see Freddie in charge straight away to give him a few easier games before the tough run at the end of the year.


Why do you guys still talk about top 4. This team plays like a team with the ambition of merely staying up. It will be a miracle to make Europa League if this coach continues to the end of the season.
And he will still find a way to justify 7th place finish.


If this carries on we could lose a few more than our two strikers. Leno is catching the eye in Germany apparently, Torreira will want out, Socratis will be out of contract, Xhaka and Mustafi will be gone and clubs will start circling our good young players. Although many fans will be glad to see some of those players leave it will be a hell of a re-build and if we’re out of Europe then top players won’t want to come. It’s a serious downward spiral.


Bayern didn’t have someone better than Kovac but they knew it doesn’t work with him. So they got rid of him regardless the fact that they’ve had no alternative and since then won 2 games including a 4-0 trashing of their hardest opponents of the last years. Sometimes it doesn’t matter who could do it. It just matters who definitely shouldn’t do it.


Yes but for the bayern case maybe the players take part in the sacking ?
If we believe what our players are saying they support emery.
I would give everything i have To take part in a training sessions. Even part of my body for a video session.


Just watched the Liverpool game. I remember feeling like that


As soon as we go one down away from home you know that 9 times out of 10 we’ve had it.

Not Emery

And sometimes when we’re 2-0 up

Win,lose or draw Emery remains the wrong choice

Big clubs boo their players when they are not performing….infact no other team boo their players more than Real Madrid and guess what?… It won them 3 champions league titles in a row….if booing the players and the coach would make them realise that they need to sit up then I’m all for that I have said it before and i would say it again,if arsenal are ever going to become relevant and competitive then it would start from the fans and not from this mediocre board that we have…the fans need to send a clear message to the players,… Read more »

Win,lose or draw Emery remains the wrong choice

Now the board doesn’t want to sack Emery,so it’s time to allow them know our displeasure in that…. We need to allow the coach,team and board feel the heat and anger of the fans…. We need to reclaim our club back before it remains just bones
#Stop the Mediocrity
#We are the fans not the puppets


Emery will stick around because of his Europa league pedigree.. and if that’s the case then I really hope he can find a way to stop this rot ..


It’s going to be a long season and my hope is that the owners will feel it in the pocketbook.


Hmm… since 14/15 and 15/16, which is when the mass fan protests started. That worked well, huh?


For reference, Liverpool this season are on 75% xG advantage so far and had 87% last season. But 79-87% wasn’t good enough for Arsenal fans a few years ago…


With emery in charge, top 4 will be out of reach for Arsenal & sadly end up losing Auba, Laca, Torreira, Leno etc. So why the delay in sacking emery?

Naked Cygan

Good ebening. In this moment for balance and performance I would like to say to our fans ” we are shit and we know we are….we are shit and we know we.”

Spanish Gooner

For the sake of playing the devil’s advocate, there is an argument to be made in favour of Emery staying on. We only have a 1/10 chance of qualifying for the CL anyway, so it’s highly likely even if we did sack him we’d still not make it, meaning we’d waste lots of money (and probably damage our reputation among other managers) for no real benefit. Arteta/Ljunberg might be talented and available, but you could argue that throwing them into a team shot of confidence, with no time to implement their own tactics would be setting them up for failure… Read more »


Except that, imagine if we finish 7th on the league and Emery wins the Europa League then he and our board will term the year highly successful and extend his contract by another year. So, do you want another year of the same? And who knows, we may even lose in the group stages of CL and drop back to Emery’s fav league – the Europa one.

Scary part is, this is the best case scenario!

Uduak Jack

This is no longer about top 4 or winning the Europa league. It is about arsenal! Our style our game! Giving us back our champagne football is what we want. Give me back our beautiful game and u can take your competitive shit baçk home Emery…

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