Monday, July 15, 2024

West Ham United 0-6 Arsenal – By The Numbers



West Ham had been unbeaten in their last six Premier League home games leading up to Sunday’s fixture at the London Stadium. They had also won their previous two encounters against Arsenal this season. Additionally, they staged a comeback from a two-goal deficit in the corresponding fixture last season, effectively ending our title hopes in the process after we scored twice in the opening ten minutes.

Given that Mikel Arteta named a squad without seven outfield players out of a first-team squad of 22, with at least one more on the bench not fit enough to start, there was genuine concern that we’d struggle to build on what we did last week against Liverpool.

Yet, there was little chance of that after William Saliba headed us in front (0.25 xG) after 32 minutes, following a Declan Rice corner.

Saka hit the second from the penalty spot (0.79 xG) after he was brought down by Areola.

Four minutes later, Rice doubled his Premier League assist tally by providing his second assist, swinging in a free-kick that Gabriel headed home (0.31 xG).

And in first-half stoppage time, Martin Ødegaard fed Trossard, who curled home number four (0.06 xG, 0.59 xGOT).

Just after the hour mark, Saka cut inside Nayef Aguerd and lashed his shot past Areola (0.19 xG, 0.61 xGOT).

Two minutes later, Declan Rice curled one in from 25 yards (0.03 xG, 0.33 xGOT) to make it six.

6 – Away goals for Arsenal. Our biggest ever away win in the Premier League, surpassing a 6-1 victory against Everton in August 2009, a team that was also coached by David Moyes.

12 – Shots on target for Arsenal, the most in a Premier League game since December 2017 when we had 16 against Manchester United.

3.59 – Expected Goals for Arsenal. Our second highest in a Premier League away game on record after West Brom in January 2021.

11 – Goals from corners this season for Arsenal. More than any other team in the Premier League.

6 – Big Chances for Arsenal (Saka x3, Saliba, Trossard and Gabriel), the fourth time this season we’ve been awarded six in a league game.

23 – Passes into Zone 14 for Arsenal. During the match at the Emirates, Arsenal played more than double (50) as they unsuccessfully attempted to break down West Ham.

62 – Passes into the half-spaces for Arsenal. We played 104 passes into the half-spaces in the reverse fixture.

43 – Touches in the penalty area for Arsenal. We made 71 touches in West Ham’s box during the 0-2 defeat at home.

26 – Shots for Arsenal compared to West Ham’s five, resulting in six goals scored and a clean sheet. In December, we’d registered 30 shots to their five, didn’t manage to find the back of the net, and conceded two.

Obviously, the quality of chances we created on Sunday was better (0.12 npxG per shot versus 0.09 npxG), but we really shouldn’t have lost the home game. We comprehensively outplayed West Ham in both fixtures, and it felt like the result was just rewards for our collective performances.

100 – Goal involvements for Bukayo Saka for Arsenal in all competitions (51 goals, 49 assists). On the day he played seven passes into the penalty area (first overall), two crosses into the penalty area (first overall), two blocks (joint first for Arsenal), eight touches in the penalty area (joint first overall), five progressive carries (joint first overall), two carries into the penalty area (joint first overall) and scored two goals.

19 – Touches for Ethan Nwaneri in just 14 minutes. To give a little context, Reiss Nelson made 18 touches in ten minutes more. Additionally, the 16-year-old completed two carries into the penalty area.


Most touches (119), most passes completed (107/116), most passes in final third (48), most final third entries (12), most chances created (7), joint most assists (2), most progressive passes (12), most successful carries (65), most progressive carries (5), most carries into the penalty area (9), 100% duels won (3/3) and 100% take-ons completed (1/1).

Since Ødegaard started dropping deeper to collect the ball, our performances have undoubtedly improved. Giving the captain more time and space with the ball at his feet has unlocked another dimension to our build-up play.


84 touches, 70/76 passes completed, 0.8 expected assists (first overall), eight final third entries, five crosses, four chances created, 2x possession won, two assists, one shot and one goal.

When we signed Declan Rice, I never bargained for the quality of his ball-striking ability. The delivery on the two dead balls and his goal were all absolutely sensational and topped off what was a perfect display against his former employers.

A statement win. It’s now four consecutive league victories and 16 goals scored by seven different players – contributing to our season’s total of 53 goals, just two fewer than Liverpool and three fewer than City. Next up is Burnley.

Follow me on Twitter @jonollington

SourcesOpta, fbref, @Orbinho twitter feed

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Six the most important


Or should that be three?

Jesus of Sao Paulo

I think 3 is more important, though 6 has a nice ring round it. 🙂


Hi Jon great work as always. Could you explain to me how Rice’s goal is 0.33xGOT? Unless you’re taking some things into account I’m not seeing (goalkeeper position?) that seems like a lot from that range no? Maybe because I’m more used to seeing xG than xGOT so I’m used to smaller numbers but is there really a 33% chance a shot on target from there goes in? Thanks I appreciate it.


the XG is 3% but the XGOT it 33%, meaning that if you hit the ball in that part of the goal frame, there’s a 33% chance of it going in


Agreed. Likewise Trossard’s goal (0.06 xG, 0.59 xGOT) also seems like an enormous leap between the two.

I imagine the answer to both is “them’s the facts”


Ah okay that explains it – I didn’t fully register it took into account the shot hitting that specific point in the goal so that clears it up, thanks!


IS there such a thing as an average difference for a player of xGOT – xG? If so is it possible to say that players who consistently have xGOT that outperforms xG are better at locating their shots?




Next up is Burnley 👍🏻

Jesus of Sao Paulo

We should comfortably maul them after we’ve smelled blood in the last two fixtures.


At least we have the Christ redeemer on our side…

Cranky Colin

I feel sorry for. Burnley


I’m also fairly confident, but let’s not count chickens.


Pretty good numbers for Odegaard…

John C

The most impressive thing about this team and manager is that we learn and adapt.

No longer are we the team that makes the same mistakes over and over as we did during last decade of the Wenger era.

On consecutive weekends we’ve seen us adapt our game to opposition we’ve been beaten by this season and beat them both convincingly.

Guns Up

Not contradicting your point, because I agree that MA definitely adapts, and does so well, but was there something significantly different you saw against West Ham away vs at the Emirates? Specifically up until the first goal, because taking the lead obviously changes the game state and approach for both sides. Looked like the same approach and patterns of play to me, with the only notable difference being “in the two boxes,” as MA would say (which of course is the most important part of the game). Were just as dominant at home against them, and should have won both… Read more »

John C

Martinelli and Saka aren’t glued to the wings is a major change. Our attacking 5 aren’t strung along the top of the pitch in a line all receiving the ball with their backs to goal. Our central 3 dropping deep opening up space.

I think over the past couple of games we’ve essentially pulled an attacking player out of our attacking line, opened up space and we now have far move movement from our forward line. I think it’s quite a significant change to be honest and we’re far less predictable


I think a big reason to Sakas Outpout > Martinellis Output can be explained by how skewed our play is, total right side dominance with players like Ödegaard basically not even passing Martinelli.

Considering we are playing so so well, imagine still having Martinelli to unlock..

A great time to be a gunner!


I think it’s because Martinelli (who I love) isn’t a hugely flexible player and needs space to run into, which most teams won’t give us. Last season there was a common pattern of Xhaka (mostly from left back when dropping) and Zinchenko (from midfield) both playing a lot of long balls to Martinelli so he could attack when the opposition was pushing up. With no settled left back or left-sided attacking midfielder, he’s looked a bit adrift this season and I’m not sure it will change.

If only he could play against Liverpool every week…


Agree. Also in this game it was White who was the more attacking fullback, further loading up the right. Martinelli will get more goals. He may star in Champions’ League.


I can see your point but I don’t fully agree, I think that is a matter of moving the ball quicker to be able to give him more space. Also if he has someone to combine with or/and someone that do overlaps it will be a whole different story.


He’s certainly underused. I’m sceptical of the idea that he’d thrive in tight spaces if only he had an Ødegaard at left-8 as I don’t think he’s as technical as Saka or Trossard. The attack is asymmetrical because the players are very different and that’s normal; the problem is Martinelli doesn’t seem to be part of a coherent plan on his side, which is on the manager (and injuries) rather than him.


Mad that the extreme xG difference (3.59/0.22) from how we hammered West Ham is not even that far from what it was against Liverpool (3.5/0.37).

A Different George

That is the most impressive point for me. Obviously Liverpool is a much stronger team than West Ham and, of course, the game state was completely different so Liverpool never gave up. Even so, we dominated both games.

Naked Cygan

I honestly believe the versatility and fluidity of our lineup totally confused West Ham. Trossard, Havertz, Martinelli, Saka, and Odegard are so good at interchanging and playing in different positions and changing our pattern of play, and then you have Rice in the middle bossing everything can be extremely deadly. But we were also very clinical with our finishing which is the most important thing. Also, instead of moving the ball from left to right, right to left slowly 20 times we took some good shots on target which led to corners and goals.


Spot on. It’s the type of interchange I wanted to see earlier in the season but it does take a lot of energy and perhaps that is how MA was conserving energy in the 1st half of the season and consolidating structure?

Naked Cygan

As long as we control the possession we control the energy we use, specially if we get a couple of goals. This line up could be the key to unlocking these teams that like to park the bus with 11 players. Having players in fixed position on the field will make it easier for them, but if we keep changing the pattern of the players it could be the 🗝️


These movements could see GM and MO also getting more into goalscoring in coming games. Perhaps even Havertz getting goals?


Very interesting how porto rank in those metrics – odd as them seem.


Decent team who could cause us trouble.

Not sure what kind of form they’re in at the moment but they’ll need to be on it to stop us on our current form.


Fantastic article I think, thank you very much for posting. I think it really puts the finger on what our next step of development is as well!

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