The Christmas gift for the fan with (almost) everything
By Walter Broeckx
We know that one of the things that some part of the fans throw at Wenger is the fact that he can’t organise a defence. And that he is stubborn. And then they come up with the fact that he needs to get a defensive coach. Because of his stubbornness he doesn’t change things around and this is something that will never change and we are doomed for ever. Now I am not against a defensive coach but do we really need one?
And I think of last season people where screaming and shivering whenever we conceded a corner or an indirect free kick. Because we couldn’t defend them. Hence the need for a real specialist defensive coach.
Therefore I have tried to look at how we conceded our goals this season. We have played 13 competitive games so far, so we should be able to get a feel of the numbers.
So I tried to put them in a table and I made a few categories in different ways we can concede goals. The goal in open play. The direct free kick goal which we have conceded a few this season. The penalties we got against us. And then also our Achilles heel from last season: defending the high ball on indirect free kicks and crosses. And I took the numbers for each competition we have played in so far in games where it mattered.
|Goals against||open play||direct free kick||penalty||indirect free kick||corner|
|EPL||Liverpool *||MU||MU||Blackburn **|
|* = offside goal|
|***= handball goal|
A first point to mention is that from the 17 goals we have conceded there are 3 that shouldn’t have counted. Two offside goals and one handball goal. That is 17% of the total goals against.
Not a figure to be happy with. But nothing can be done to correct “mistakes” from the refs of their assistants. But as they have been counted I have taken them in the total numbers.
Another striking point is that oh my god we did conceded an extraordinary number of beautiful goals. As an Arsenal supporter they cut me like a knife but as someone who can admire a well taken shot flying in the top corner, I must say that some goals where just unstoppable.
The third and this time a real striking point is the fact that in the PL we conceded no goals so far on corners. And that we only conceded 1 goal from an indirect free kick taken from the goal line. And even then the opposition didn’t score but we scored an own goal when the ball hit a knee from one of our players.
Last season our players and our coaching staff (a euphemism to not say Wenger) got all the dirty talk from some part of the fans that we couldn’t defend them. Okay, fair enough I would say but if it hadn’t been for a very stupid own goal we wouldn’t have conceded one goal from such a game situation so far in the PL. In fact we only conceded from a short taken corner in the CL when the whole team fell asleep and didn’t expect it to be taken like that. You just don’t see a corner taken short a lot in the EPL so I think it is down to not being used to it.
But from the “normal” corner we didn’t concede a goal in the EPL so far this season. So it seems that even without the “so much needed” defensive coach we seemed to manage to turn a few things around. And even our “stubborn” manager was flexible enough to change something and looking at the numbers it seems to work so far.
So maybe with all the people who are saying that they are shaking on their knees whenever we get a corner against us: maybe it is time to relax a bit more because so far the numbers suggest that we are rather doing fine when defending corners this season.
And as we have rather a high number of injuries (Vermaelen out a few weeks, now Sagna out for many months) and combine this with the fact that we have a few new players coming in from other countries and 2 young but promising players at right and left back I think the number of conceded goals will go down. The players need the time to get used to each other and to form partnerships. And I think they can only get better during the season.
Oh and according to our statistics last season we conceded around 30% of our goals on those that we could not defend. And this season this number is down to only 2 goals or 10% in all competitions and this includes an own goal. Not that bad for a team in desperate need for a defensive coach to organize us on dead balls.
- REF REVIEW: Arsenal v Sunderland
- MATCH REVIEW: Three go missing at the Emirates
- REF WATCH: “Anything can happen in the next 2 hours” (It’s Howard Webb Again)
- PREVIEW: Arsenal vs. Sunderland
- HISTORY: This almost certainly isn’t the 125th year of Arsenal
- STADIA: The Olympic Stadium Fiasco – a Tiny Tott Perspective
- REF REVIEW: Man U 2 Norwich 0
- MATCH PREVIEW: Finally back to football and some of the injured are back too
- HISTORY: We didn’t come from Dial Square, we came from Woolwich United
- ECONOMICS: “A world class organisation with a winning mentality”
Untold Arsenal – the (fairly) complete index
- Untold History…Untold Media … Untold Ref Reviews …
- Untold Economics … Untold Corruption … Untold Wenger …
- Untold News … Untold Fifa … Untold Players … Untold Injuries
- Untold Statistics … Untold Tactics … Untold 2011/2 …
- Untold match reviews … Untold fans …
- Untold Stadia … Untold Literature …
- Untold humour …Arsenal History Society … “Making the Arsenal” …
- Untold Emirates … Arsenal Independent Supporters Association
- Premier League 2022/23 – Matchweek 2 Refereeing matters
- Are we all really sure that no other club behaves like Barcelona?
- Arsenal’s new tactics explored in detail and what it means for the season ahead
- How the Premier League referees are biased: an analysis
- Barcelona’s attempt to fool the financial regulator unravels