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July 2021

Where did we concede our goals? – part 2

By Walter Broeckx

In the last article I tried to give you a view on how the goals we conceded were made. As was shown a lot of those goals were made from our own mistakes. In today’s article I want to take about where we conceded those goals.

As you know we let in 30 goals in the PL this season.

That itself is a good number. The only team who has done better is Manchester City who only let in 24 goals and who are by far the best team when it comes to preventing the other team from scoring.  With 30 goals we sit in second place together with Chelsea. And then we have Manchester United who let in 31 goals.

So all in all I think we are not doing extremely bad compared to other teams. Yes things can improve as they always can improve. And as was shown in our earlier article the individual errors should be removed from our game. And then we would have a great record and would be up there with Manchester City.

Moving on to where we conceded we see that from the 30 goals we conceded 19 goals in the Emirates.  And only 11 games when playing away from home.

So far we have played 13  away games this season. And only conceded 11 goals. That is not bad, I would say. Not bad at all.  The goals we conceded were 2 at Chelsea, 1 at Southampton, 2 at Reading, 1 at Everton, 2 at MU, and one apiece at Norwich, West Ham and Manchester City.

On the road we kept 5 clean sheets so far this season. At home we kept 4 clean sheets in this season.  A total of 9 clean sheets in 27 games. On average one clean sheet in 3 games. On the other hand we also had 2 games in which we conceded 3 goals. But neither of these games was lost. A 3-3 draw with Fulham and and a 7-3 win against Newcastle.

As you can see both those games were when playing at home so there seems to be a real difference when playing at home or away in our defensive performances. The big question now of course is what is that difference? What makes us stronger away from home when it comes to not letting the other teams score?

Is it the tactics we employ away from home that is a bit different? I don’t really think so. I think we start each game with the will to go forward. It is the nature of our game. It is the nature of our manager. So at home or away we just try to attack and win the game.

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Or is it the opponents who approach the game differently when playing at home compared to playing at the Emirates? One could expect the opposition to defend more at the Emirates and yet they end up scoring more goals there than at their own grounds. One could say the counter-attacks are responsible for it but then again less than 10% of the goals can be attributed to goals scored on a counter.

I was just wondering that the difference between home and away might have something to do with the way both players and supporters interact at games?

Because when you go away you expect that you have to defend in a tough way. You know you will be up against not just the home team; you know you will also be up against the home crowd. So you prepare for that mentally. You prepare so that they don’t get under your skin.

To do that you need to play strong. But that little bit that helps you overcome both the home team and their support is the feeling that you are not alone.

That feeling that comes from the Arsenal away supporters. You see them, you hear them and you know they are there to support you. And as we know they usually do this in a rather loud and strong way. It sure helps the player and I think the interaction helps the players in their battle.

The away supporters also have travelled a long way and gone through a lot of trouble to get there. Get up early, make a long journey, often against the odds: train cancellations, road “incidents”, diversions, bad weather…. They also know that they need to support as much as can to wipe out the home advantage.  So that is what they usually do in a great way.

And the big difference is that at the Emirates we maybe have too many people just sitting there doing nothing at all. Even clapping their hands when we score is sometimes asked too much.  I’m not wanting to say that this is for the majority of the supporters at the Emirates. No I think the majority wants to sing and shout. But when you are surrounded with 4 statues next, in front and behind you who only look at you with eyes telling you to calm down a bit then you really have to be a real supporter to ignore them and keep on signing and shouting.

Maybe the fact that in the away support section you only have 0.1% of the Gooners there who do nothing. But at the home games even if 15% just sit there you get maybe some 10.000 people sitting there. Waiting to start the moan. Waiting to start the groan. Waiting to start abusing their own players. (Chelsea fans are stating that they will take this “art” to a higher level this weekend).

Now I played at the Emirates almost two years ago myself and my God I still relive the occasion a lot. But I must admit there weren’t a 60.000 people there to support us. (Where were you by the way?)  But I do know that even those few hundred people who made a real noise when one of our team mates scored an amazing cracking goal to win us a game.  On that day it raised the level of our team. I still remember how we defended as if our lives depended upon it. And after all it was just a friendly tournament with other Gooners from all over the world.

So I don’t know the 60.000 people experience but I do think that players who are used to playing in such a stadium can feel it when some 10.000 are not supporting you. When they just sit there waiting for your first mistake and then can start saying: told you so.  I wonder how much the players feel this attitude. And how much it might affect them?

So maybe, just maybe the usually brilliant away support who gets behind the team from the first minute to the last minute brings out the best there is in the players and they make less mistakes? And maybe the moans and groans and the apathy from some fans brings out the fear of making mistakes and usually when you are afraid of making a mistake, you will make a mistake.

So what if we raise our home support to the usual level of the away support? On each and every game. Would it matter for our defensive performance? Well why don’t we just try it? Why don’t we just go for it?

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28 comments to Where did we concede our goals? – part 2

  • Will

    Love this post. I completely agree, weve all paid well over a grand to sit in the stadium we may as well give it a proper SHOUT. Thats partly why we go, to go and get the working week previous out of your system. I hear more negative chants (or just silence) about our players than the opposition, ridiculous, when we should be backing our boys. The two guys who sit next to me seem to be Arsenal fans who think that our team should be playing like the invincibles week in week out, and dont seem to even comprehend the change of the british football scene in the past decade (perhaps they even started supporting in these glory times??). i have taken to sitting in other empty seats if they carry on laying into our players. Although at the bayern game i nearly punched him but instead said ‘have you ever tried singing and actually supporting the team?’ to which he said nothing….just like throughout most of our matches. Come on Arsenal stand together – divided we will fall.

  • soglorious

    …why cant we just try…

  • uk

    Well since the AAA account for an insignificant ultra-minority of gooners (according to UA) we know where the blame should be placed, don’t we?

  • WalterBroeckx

    A small but vocal minority uk, vocal in their moans

  • Gbemy

    for christ sake what is the fans got to do with this, common they all try there best to gear this player up but this players them self are not helping the fans. Is ti the fans that make Vam and cos doing an own goal, dashing opponent ball to score us, unable to cleared there lines or the stupid goal keeper that push ball for opponent for a re bounce, is it the fans that make the old skul thinking manager of ours that think wen we are looking for goas htat Ramsy is the best choice than rocisky, ashavin and chambalain. Why can’t you guys say the fact and leave all this I love this player and I want them to be on the pitch. Morino drops all dose his star and use ppl that were hungry. and in form to play Baca and he got result, Vam, Ramsy, Diaby, Gervinho and Szescny were not in form, they should be on the bench and let players like Conqelin, rocisky, chamberlain,yonaries and Esfield to play every times this players play they are almost or the best player on the pitch why he keep on bench them. Just tired of all this Article trying to cover up for a team that lost there standard because of a coach that think only for the boad not the team and the fans. Pls pardon spelling.

  • Nannu

    With each passing interview, it is becoming more and more apparent that Mr Wenger is past his sell by date. Realistically we need at least 4-5 world class players to even think about competing for the title again…..and let’s face it, summer will come and go and I fear it will be the same old story with lack of investment once again. First it was the comments about ‘not worrying about the opposition’ now this. Tactically inept and out of touch with the transfer market.

  • Peter Northcott

    Off topic, but the media are reporting a major bid for the club from a middle eastern consortium…

    Makes me very nervous – does anyone have any more information on this? Would far rather have Stan than go the way of Man City. We mustn’t sell our soul.

  • Nannu

    Shut up Paul. Go the way of man City and actually win a title you mean. It’s losers like you and that clown of a manger we have that we will not win a single trophy. And idiosyncratic people like you need a good look and decide who you are supporting, arsenal fc or arsenic fc

  • WalterBroeckx

    Always good to see that the AAA (that doesn’t exist of course) is full of people who use fine and brilliant arguments. They never go over to insulting people of course. No they have too much class to do this.

    Nannu, you’re on a yellow by the way. We don’t mind debate but if possible with arguments. And as we have said before : insults are no arguments

  • Mick

    ‘Shut up Paul’
    Am I missing something but who is Paul.

  • Gord


    I didn’t look at your link, but a different links says there is more than one Middle East group thinking about this.

    I hope they ALL fail! If Arsenal gets bought out by money to do the same crap that Chelsea, ManCity, … are doing, I will quit supporting Arsenal, and I may quit following football.

  • Gord

    You were past your sell by date when you were born.

  • Gord


    If Arsenal gets bought out by money, what would you do? I’ve posted my decision: no more support of Arsenal or football.

    Second, if you decide to move to another sport, which one (and why)?

  • Arun

    From what I have read about the bid, it seems to me that it was first published in sun which means it is a lie.

  • ARSENAL 13


    Well, Looks like Kroenke refused to sell (if the reports of bid is true in the first place). The article is intended to get the fans (AtleAst the vocAl ones) on their side with the claims of money to spend/lesser ticket prices/debt settlement. Sounds weird to me. “Divide and rule” Is this the plot??

    BUT if it happens, What ever Mr Wenger and ARSENAL worked for over the years……..down the drain.

  • WalterBroeckx

    Maybe when carnival is over and the masks are removed the secret sheikh could be a rather corpulent Uzbek?

    One never knows but to me it looks like another attempt to destabilize our club. Just on the day of the NLD. Coincidence????

  • Mandy Dodd

    thats exactly what it is walter, makes no sense, that so called bid is well over what we are actually worth. and then they are going to slash ticket prices….and compete on FFP…..right…
    This works on lots of levels, possibly an attempt for flush stan out as nothing more than a money grabber. i think there is however about a one percent chance of this being genuine, purely as it originally came from the telegraph. you may like, loath or be indifferent to stan, but he should not be judged on false bids. oh, if this did happen, wenger would walk, so they had better leave it until the end of the season.

  • Stuart

    Someone obviously has a magic wand if they are able to reduce our income, increase our spending and qualify for FFP at the same time.

  • Mandy Dodd

    it just seems designed to address every known issue of the disgruntled in 1 fell swoop, if something looks, feels and smells too good to be true…….
    like it or not, this club have decided on a different path, one not without its frustrations at times i grant you.
    I know a few Leeds fans, they were initially delighted at being taken over by a consortium from the mid east, they are not so delighted now.
    Everyone says ftp will not work, but some clubs do seem to be at least moderating their behaviour. Then the bit – about not bidding again if the club goes into decline…if you really want to make something great?? and surely the price would be better? Mischief mischief mischief!!!!!
    This whole thing stinks do not think key players from that part of the world with that amount of money would be inclined to such a level of indiscretion, this sounds like the work of someone closer to home…..but could be wrong of course…but then there is the timing….

  • GoingGoingGooner

    Impressive timing for this rumour.

  • Linz

    We concede goals because Wenger insists on playing a stupidly high line, and Slow and Slower lack the pace and positional awareness to react to danger or run back.However, as i have not worked for thirty years in football i know nothing.Instead of buying even more midfielders in the summer,how about flogging Vermaelen to Barca and buying some decent centre backs..Enjoy the Europa league next season ,if we even make that.Ramsey got a new contract for what exactly? A sympathy contract like Diabys?Well Eduardo never got one and his injury was far,far worse.

  • Nannu

    The fucker should offer his resignation, if he had any shame. But no if you get 7 million a year not to win anything who would give up a free jolly

  • iniez

    Ya it doesn’t sit well with me. This “mystery” buyer that suddenly wants to own our club, and that they want to make us “competitive again”. Really not liking the language they used. To be frank, I sort of doubt the existence of this mystery Qatari buyer. I’d really be interested to see how usmanov reacts, if the news is true, I’m not sure he’d support it

  • Mandy Dodd

    There is no buyer iniez all another attempt to destabilise.why would anyone interested in buying us completely insult the majority owner then go and offer sixty percent over what the club is worth. Know who I think is behind this

  • Mandy Dodd

    Have to say, think today makes it wengers worst season for losing to small clubs?

  • Florian


    Your language demonstrates what kind of person you are. One that will never be worthy of 10% of what Arsene makes.

  • uk

    Welldone AKB away support, you did the job @WHL, just like u did @san siro, nou camp etc.
    It has nothing to do wit d’quality of the team, its all to do wit your support. By the way, did you guys hav anythng to do with the booing @swansea last season