Logically this match was pretty small potatoes. In the grand scheme of the Europa League this match didn’t matter much, the big one left for Arsenal is home to Frankfurt. There is also a huge match on the weekend against Leicester with huge implications for Arsenal’s top 4 chances. Yet… Unai Emery’s teams find a way to make things that should be no big deal, a mess.
Vitoria de Guimaraes 1-1 Arsenal: By the graphs
xG Shot Map
Shot Placement xG Map Simulated Match Result
Vitoria de Guimaraes 1-1 Arsenal: By the numbers
7 – Shots for Arsenal
15 – Shots for Vitoria
9 – Times that Arsenal have been out shot by their opponents in the Premier League and Europa League out of 15 matches played.
-24 – Arsenal’s shot difference in the Premier League and Europa League
4 – Matches in a row were Arsenal gave up a lead
1 – Pass completed into the box by Arsenal in this match (doesn’t include crosses and corner kicks, because Opta treats these as a special class outside of regular passes), it was 5 including crosses.
5 – Passes completed into the box by Vitoria, 8 including crosses.
64.7 – Possession for Arsenal
55.5 – Percent of the total final third passes in the final third for Arsenal (131 of 238 total)
52.6 – Percent of passes for Arsenal that were square or backwards
17.7 – Percent of Arsenal passes that were from one center back to another center back (104 of 589)
— Scott Willis (@oh_that_crab) November 6, 2019
In this match Arsenal had the definition of sterile possession. Arsenal struggled to advance the ball, and when they did it was only though the wings. Arsenal’s passing resembled the dreaded “U” shape but instead of the typical shape around the 18 yard box, this was around the halfway line. Almost all of Arsenal’s top pass combinations were between their center backs.
What this led to was that Arsenal were again relatively toothless in attack. The most damning statistic is that not counting crosses, Arsenal completed just one pass into the box, this was the assist that led to Arsenal’s only goal. This was another match where Arsenal were again out shot. In chance quality, it was again a match that was closer than the raw shot count but it again raises a major concern about the performance of this team.
In more than half of their matches (Premier League and Europe League only) Arsenal have been out shot.
That is simply damning. This hasn’t been a run facing the best teams in Europe either in fact it includes one “top” team. The full list of teams that have out shot Arsenal this season is: Newcastle United (15th in the Premier League), Burnley (14th), Liverpool (1st), Watford (20th), Frankfurt (7th in the Bundesliga), Manchester United (10th), Vitoria (5th in Primeria Liga, twice), and Wolverhampton (12th).
Normally I would try to find good or interesting things to highlight from a match but in this dark cloud of a team I am really struggling to keep looking for the silver linings.
Sources: Opta via whoscored, StatsZone and my own database