- Arsenal v Tottenham: different clubs, different managers, different successes
- Arsenal v Tottenham with clubs now getting more cards than they put in tackles!
By Bulldog Drummond
There is quite a bit of nattering going on the media, as you might expect, about the Arsenal v Tottenham game on Sunday. There are odd statistics here and there, comparisons of the manager, all the usual stuff. But in the media that I read there was no mention of something that, as I contemplated writing up this part of the preview series of articles for the match, struck me as the biggest statistic of them all.
It it a very simple statistic, and one that is blindingly obvious if you take a good look at the results in recent years. But it is one that the media don’t really want to know about.
It is that in the last dozen games between the two clubs at the Arsenal Stadium, Tottenham Hotspur haven’t won. Indeed Tottenham Hotspur, so beloved of the media, have only ever won one league game at the Arsenal stadium since the club moved the 750 yards or so from Highbury. 11v11 have the data if you want to check.
Now that particular moment was on 20 November 2010. It was a match in which the referee decided that Arsenal needed the yellow cards (three of them in fact just to make the point) but Tottenham really shouldn’t have any cards although he did eventually give one to van der Vaart being the only Tottenham player carded just to try and make the bias look a little less obvious. Younès Kaboul scored the winner in the 85th minute.
And that was it. The great and glorious and (don’t tell the media) single victory by Tottenham at Arsenal since the move across the road from Highbury.
Now I do know that statistics like this can be challenged with the current preferred phrase being “I simply don’t believe it”, as if belief was of importance.
But really a figure such as this really isn’t that surprising given Arsenal’s dominance in the games overall: 86 wins to Arsenal, (42%) 67 to Tottenham (32%) and 54 draws.
Now I do know that I can on occasion make mistakes with statistics, and sometimes they are absolute whoppers with assorted laughter ringing around the kingdom when the error of my way is pointed out. So this time I am going to print the list of games. (And why not since it makes such fun reading?)
All these games, as noted, were in the top division, Tottenham not having taken a sojourn in the second tier since 1978. (Arsenal as you will know, were last in the lower reaches in 1914/15 but were elected into the first Division after the war on the expansion of the league. But even then Tottenham and their media hangers-on couldn’t quite take it and put about the notion some 45 years later that Arsenal had bribed their way into the top division. If you want to read the full and most detailed story of why and how Arsenal were elected into the top league in 1919, and why Tottenham were rejected, that is here).
Anyway here are the results of the last dozen Arsenal home games against Tottenham. 30 goals to Arsenal and 14 to Tottenham making the average scored 2.5 to Arsenal and 1.17 to Tottenham, suggesting that a score of 2-1 or 3-1 would be a pretty reasonable supposition for this game.
|26 Feb 2012||Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur||W||5-2|
|17 Nov 2012||Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur||W||5-2|
|01 Sep 2013||Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur||W||1-0|
|27 Sep 2014||Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur||D||1-1|
|08 Nov 2015||Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur||D||1-1|
|06 Nov 2016||Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur||D||1-1|
|18 Nov 2017||Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur||W||2-0|
|02 Dec 2018||Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur||W||4-2|
|01 Sep 2019||Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur||D||2-2|
|14 Mar 2021||Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur||W||2-1|
|26 Sep 2021||Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur||W||3-1|
|01 Oct 2022||Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur||W||3-1|
And there we are. If any other media now reports on that, I’ll be happy to claim they have nicked my research, although in reality the data is all there for anyone interested. As for why the media won’t tell us this… well either because they couldn’t be arsed to look it up, or they won’t be seen reporting the fact that historically Arsenal have been the better team. For the media, that just isn’t an option.
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