Monday, April 22, 2024

Manchester City 0-0 Arsenal – By The Numbers



It’s fair to say that The Etihad isn’t our favourite ground to visit. We hadn’t won any of our previous eight Premier League trips there prior to kickoff, losing the last seven in a row and conceding 21 goals in the process. Additionally, a heavy 4-1 defeat in the corresponding fixture last season essentially dashed any hopes we had of winning the title.

However, after defeating City to win the Community Shield on penalties and following it up with a league victory at the Emirates, there was ample reason for optimism for Arteta and his team. We are now a more complete and better-drilled unit compared to this time last year, and our recent performances suggest we’ve hit form at just the right time.

8 – Arsenal had won their previous eight consecutive Premier League matches before kickoff at the Etihad. The last Gunners’ team to win nine in a row were the Invincibles in March 2004.

6 – Attempts in total for Arsenal, the fewest we’ve registered this season, four fewer than our previous lowest, which was at Chelsea away (10).

0.66 – Expected goals for Arsenal, the third lowest total we have accumulated this season.

12 – Touches in the opposition box for Arsenal, the fewest we’ve registered this season and well below our average of 38.3, which ranks first overall in the Premier League.


12 – Shots for Man City, the fourth most we’ve conceded in a game all season, but the sixth fewest total City have registered so far this Premier League campaign.

0.31 – Expected goals accumulated by Erling Haaland during his previous three appearances against Arsenal. Haaland registered 1.4 xG at the Etihad last season and walked away with a goal and two assists, as well as five shots on target.

1 – Shot on target for Man City, the only time City have registered fewer was away to Arsenal earlier in the season, where they failed to place a single shot on David Raya’s goal.

10 – Clean sheets in the Premier League this season for Raya, making him the first goalkeeper to reach double figures, and the first opposition keeper to achieve a clean sheet against Man City at the Etihad since Vicente Guaita in October 2021.

2 – Clean sheets against Pep Guardiola’s Man City in the same season. Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal become only the third team to achieve this feat.

76 – Premier League games since last season’s treble winner have been involved in a goalless stalemate.

38 – Attempted passes for David Raya (ranked first for Arsenal). Raya completed 12 from 30 long pass attempts (40%) and made one pass into the final third.

47 – Touches for William Saliba (ranked first for Arsenal and eighth overall). It’s not often you’ll see an Arsenal player topping his teammates for touches but being placed as far down the list as eighth overall. Uncharacteristic for Saliba was that of his 33 pass attempts, only 76% (25) found a teammate. The youngster regularly finishes games around the 94% mark and is among the top ten Premier League players with the highest pass completion rate.

However, Wilo Saliba won two tackles (first for Arsenal), made two blocks (second for Arsenal), and recorded five clearances (second for Arsenal) during a match when we were solid defensively, and he was magnificent.

4 – Fouls made by Kai Havertz (first overall). Arsenal committed 20 fouls to City’s nine on a day where we showed a team renowned for their tactical fouling that we’re not as naive as we once were.

That was an outstanding performance. We demonstrated tactical flexibility and maturity that we’re not accustomed to witnessing in these big away games. We were content to let them have the ball and restricted their opportunities to just one shot on target. I believed we had the better chances in open play, but the only way we were going to win was to capitalise on one of them, which is perfectly fine considering Bukayo Saka was clearly not 100% fit, and we had no natural outlet on the left. That said, I think Jesus was very good on the day, protecting and helping out Kiwior tremendously.

We’ve come a long way in a short amount of time and continue to do so, comparing how we played yesterday to last year. If we carry on in the same vein, victories at their place in the future will surely come. For now, let’s enjoy the fact we’ve taken four points from the treble winners and sit a point above them in the league.

Next up is a quick turnaround as Luton visit The Emirates in a must-win game on Wednesday.

Follow me on Twitter @jonollington

SourcesOpta, fbref, @Orbinho twitter feed


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It’s hilarious to see rival fans cry about how we played on Social Media. It wasn’t even necessarily a low block all through. We pressed high in the first phase and dropped into a compact block immediately they beat our press. There’s a reason we have the best defensive record this season. For me, Partey showed with some of his passes why he is such a crucial member of this squad. A fit and firing Partey and a fit Martinelli would have made things even more interesting. Hopefully, they will both be up to speed when the crucial UCL games… Read more »


A fit Partey in place of Jorginho would make this team even better. It is scary watching Jorgs against a team that attacks direct and at pace. He literally looks like he’s standing still at times when he’s recovering against counter attacks.


Speaking of which, is Haaland really that good?. I think I the original Ronaldo, Henry, Raul, David Villa and of course Kane even Mbappe and he’s not in my opinion half of these players. He scores but then what?

Yes he’s young but I don’t see how he will improve being an all rounded goal scorer. He’s a monster of an athlete but that’s just about it.


He’s similar to Nistelrooy – prolific goal scorer rather than well rounded footballer.


One good point of the game to me is the fact that we kept a clean sheet having Kiwior in the first 11. A single mistake from the least experienced player ruins the game, and such a player is usually the main target of the opponent. Maybe not his best game but he did cope with the pressure and the result is a clean sheet which is great defensively.


0 – the number of fucks given about what rival fans say.

Marquis Gooner

Thanks John, always appreciate these stat breakdowns, they usually point out something that was missed when just watching the game… all in all I think this game was a positive even if we could have snatched it… 8/12 vs Pool & Sh115ty this season is very welcome.


115 — Reasons why Citeh aren’t actually as good as they’re hyped up to be.


Saka’s numbers were poor because neither he nor Martinelli are fully fit. That says, with Jesus and Trossard to cover both wings we can still go on the run these next few games that will win us the league. When a team has a defense as good as ours, it can never be counted out. The key for us is to keep Odegaard healthy. If we lose him for any reason for more than one match it’s over for us. He is the one player on this team for which we have no meaningful replacement. Nobody can do what he… Read more »

Wrighty's hats

I have this dream that ESR will take on this role and we will have two top top players available, interchangeable and both getting plenty of games as we challenge on all fronts

I miss santi cazorla

Let’s not forget how good esr is. He literally saved Mikel’s job in that away win over chelsea. And he is a better goal scorer than odegard.


Got to watch replay today. Defensive steel. Good lord we strong in front of goal. Really missed a healthy saka and martinelli.

I thought city had the best two chances, but Arsenal missed early.
not boring at all great game.


Haaland got 0.31 XG in this game but has accumulated 0.24 XG over the last 3 fixtures against Arsenal? Something doesn’t add up there.


A draw vs City is almost like winning the EPL. Unbelievable result. Some say that Pep is the all-father of football.


Good result, and a lot of maturity shown by the team. We now see Arteta’s pragmatic side, and a team willing and capable of playing in a way that they weren’t a year ago. This isn’t about playing entertaining football, it’s about doing what is necessary to bring home the title.

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x