By Tony Attwood
A lot of people got very exercised about the Arsenal need to buy another striker or three during the summer. We bought one, and in this weekend’s game he came on, on the 88th minute.
Last season Giroud was our top scorer with 16 goals. So far in the league he has come on twice as a sub. So what is going on?
In terms of the shots per game listings we are way off the target – not even making the top five.
|OT pos||Team||Shots pg||Shots OT pg||Lge pos||Shots pg pos|
Clearly there is something of a link between shots on target per game and league position – only Southampton are out of phase between the two – 8th in the Shots OT per game but 14th in the league. There is less of a link between shots per game and league position. West Ham are 8th in terms of shots per game but 18th in the league.
So (at least thus far) shooting on target doesn’t guarantee success but it comes with a general level of success.
If we look at the league table in terms of goals we see goals again are clearly good (obviously) but scoring lots and lots although helpful doesn’t tell us everything.
|Lge pos||Goals position||Team||W||D||L||F||A||GD||Pts|
|18||9||West Ham United||1||0||4||7||13||-6||3|
However I was none the less interested to note the Kane injury. Of course we don’t know how serious it will be, but the fact is that Tottenham were very dependent on Kane for their success last season. He scored 25 of their 69 Premier League goals last season. Dele Alli got 10. Christian Eriksen got six.
For Arsenal the top scorer last season was Giroud with 16, second was Alexis with 13, and third Ozil with six. Arsenal scored 65, four fewer than Tottenham which shows we had a number of other players who could happily pop up and score when Giroud wasn’t doing the business.
Now the point I am edging towards is that having one player who can knock in 25 in a season is great – we’d all love such a player. But take out the player who scores 36% of your goals and you have a bit of a problem, unless you have others up and coming to take over.
Arsenal currently have Giroud, Lucas Pérez and Alexis who could do the business. So just out of curiosity I went and had a look at Alexis’ figures overall for Arsenal.
By the end of last season the top of our appearance list for current players looked like this:
|Theo Walcott||27||2006 (Winter)||344||85|
However I was struck with Alexis – who only this season has been played as an out and out striker. He has been scoring one goal every 2.23 games. Now that is not at at the Harry Kane level – and I have no difficulty admitting Kane is an exceptional player, but having one such dominant striker does give the club a problem, as I have said, if that player is injured for any length of time.
|1||Diego Costa / Chelsea,||5||440||5||88||1||3||3.2|
|2||Michail Antonio / West Ham,||5||412||5||82.4||–||1||4|
|3||Etienne Capoue / Watford,||5||436||4||104||1||–||1.4|
|4||Romelu Lukaku / Everton,||3(1)||297||4||74.25||1||–||4|
|5||Zlatan Ibrahimovic / Manchester United,||5||450||4||112.5||–||1||5.4|
|6||Alexis Sánchez / Arsenal,||4(1)||388||3||129.33||1||–||2.6|
|7||Leroy Fer / Swansea,||5||428||3||142.66||–||2||2|
|8||Raheem Sterling / Manchester City||5||420||3||140||2||1||2.6|
|9||Robert Snodgrass / Hull,||5||408||3||136||–||–||2.6|
|10||Sergio Agüero / Manchester City||3||261||3||87||–||–||5|
|10||West Bromwich Albion||5||2||1||2||6||5||1||7|
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Anniversary of the day
19 September 1929: Cliff Bastin’s first game. He signed for Arsenal for £2,000 on 27 April 1929 after 17 games in the Third Division South for Exeter. Arsenal beat Huddersfield 2-0 with Lambert and John scoring.