Our new super short-trousered signing, and and injury worries

But such is the state of football in general and football journalism in particular, that the age of excitement for the signing of players has quickly escalated downwards.  Ramsey was a big bit of new when signed aged 18.  Then it was  €6 million move to sign Argentine 16-year-old Maxi Romero.  Now it is £10,000 to sign a primary school player from Luton.

Apparently Chelsea, Tottenham and Manchester City tried to get him too, but we won.   However we didn’t get 13-year-old Takefusa Kubo, who was one of the children caught up in the child trafficking scandal at Barcelona, and he has gone to FC Tokyo.  But I am not clear how we were going to be able to sign him anyway – at least not without a close family member already living in London.   Otherwise we’d be guilty of the same sort of thing that has made Barcelona so notorious.

And so, on to injuries.   I thought the news on Danny Welbeck was getting better, but it seems not.  The latest is that he won’t be ready to play Man U.

Aaron Ramsey hasn’t trained of late, but should be training today, and should be ok to play on Sunday.   Jack of course is ok and raring to go.

But the news on the Ox ain’t so good and there are doubts that once again he will miss the cup final through injury.   Mathieu Debuchy and Mikel Arteta won’t be risked in the squad.

However even though these few injuries continue to hang around it is clear that we continue to be much better off now than we were earlier in the season.  Not only were we picking up two injuries per game on average until Christmas (now it is 1.4) each injury was keeping a player out longer.  Before Christmas it was 24 days out per injury on average, now it is close to 17.

As a result we have scored more goals and won more points per game, but the biggest difference of all between before and after Christmas is the number of goals we have let in.

This is of course what you might expect since it was our defence that was particularly knocked about – but the reality is that the number of goals against per game in the second half of this season has been 0.6.   In the first half it was double that rate – 1.2.

Part of this is perhaps down to the huge investment that Arsenal have put into sports science of late.  If they are giving different advice (and no one knows for sure although lots of people who claim to be in the know are saying this is the case) then it is working.

We’ve had way above average injuries in each of the last seven seasons, and the press and their aaa chums have been quick to blame Mr Wenger.  But the fact remains that if, as our figures suggest, Arsenal are kicked more, and with less retribution from refs, than other clubs, that would be enough on its own to be a cause of an endless injury crisis.

But because the media is under a mutual pact not to mention such a possibility at all under any circumstances, no further investigation is done into this.  We do our bit, but Untold has a limited budget and can’t match the sort of research that sponsored organisations can undertake.

Also, although there’s virtually no mention of it in the press Arsenal now have StatDNA as their own company, and that is undoubtedly not only providing data on players from all over the world, but also producing the sort of figures on referee performance and injury trends that you just can’t buy anywhere else.

Plus the medical centre which opened in late 2011, and the new facilities being built at Hale End will all help in developing Arsenal’s resilience to the unpunished kick, push and shove.

We can’t say all our injuries are behind us, but I think this downward trend could continue for years to come.


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19 Replies to “Our new super short-trousered signing, and and injury worries”

  1. There’s no need for a London address for this lad (Charlie Patino) as the family home is at St Albans which would be no more than a thirty minute drive to our academy at Hale End and even closer to London Colney. My understanding is that this was the reason they chose us over others

  2. Yes, Eurosprt confirms that Rooney, Shah and Carrick will miss the match.

  3. Shah of what? 🙂

    Toral is on the bench for Brendtford in their playoff games against Middlesbrough. Brendtford lost at home last time.

  4. Josif, Florian i would not put too much stock in that at all. Sunday they will probably have a “recovery”. ManU will not want to have to play qualifiers.

    I just want a great Arsenal performance, no injuries and to humiliate them.
    I supposed if we had won Swansea, players might not have been interested much on Sunday, now they have to fight for qualifying. If we are not clinical and focused, we will lose, and we will have no one else to blame.

  5. The media make me sick and some of our ex players rank amongst the worst offenders. Seems like they have all been fed the same script……Arsene,,you need a completely new spine to compete. The UK media are obsessed with the transfer market….a,ingest other things. Buy buy buy, no mention of develop or unearth in there.
    The latest comes from Paul Merson, once a very good player for us, latterly a bit of a moron

    Should not link such shite, it is quite sickening reading, but then you read down a bit and see the names Matic, Costa, Corurtois, and are reminded that this life long Chelsea fan loves that club as much as the aaa do.
    So much for Merson. Weighty, Smith and Thierry, what’s your excuse?

  6. Above….meant to say Wrighty…..tho he does seem to have put on a few pounds….as we all do!

  7. I really think that although Hazard has won the most free kicks (including dives but mainly genuine fouls), Alexis gets kicked twice as much as him…..

  8. Brickfields,
    Sorry, is the north not already in Scotland? You learn something new every day……..
    Still, if they did bugger off at least we wouldn’t have to listen to that whining, nasal accent every day in the media and we could relocate the BBC back where it ought to be.
    No doubt Manchester will pay for itself through its bountiful oil revenues too…..

  9. @Mandy

    By the time the newspapers get on the street the news is old news so create news.
    On the net the only way to have news that no one else has is to – create news.

    Articles like your link can be ignored and should be ignored unless you want to waste your time.

    Not just headlines about Arsenal but head lines on all subjects they can be spotted by their attempt at sensationalism.

    They are not news they are invented news because that is the only way the media can get our attention.

    Some people of course will fall for the ploy and it is these the media live off.

  10. The main stream media outlets are a desperate bunch – really!!!

    On our injury front Tony, you are spot on with “But the fact remains that if, as our figures suggest, Arsenal are kicked more, and with less retribution from refs, than other clubs, that would be enough on its own to be a cause of an endless injury crisis.”

    As for the injuries (supposedly) to MaNure players…I will bet they will be be flying fit for Sunday! scammers!!

  11. My son has just told me that tomorrow is the anniversary our last trophy victory. We have now not won a trophy for 365 days.
    Wenger in trophy drought….

  12. Florian, mostly I thought there might be a joke in there somewhere. But I can’t think of one.

    I see that we got a record off our books. The fastest time to score a hat-trick was Liverpool against us, it is now Southampton against Aston Villa.

  13. Shay Given was the man in goal for AV in that hat-trick. Does that mean he will not be in goal for the FA Cup Final?

  14. Gord,

    Sadly no, it was my phone that thought he knows best;)

    I didn’t follow Villa too closely, but they didn’t struck me as a particularly sound defensive group. Vlaar for all his credentials makes mistakes, like in the just finished Southampton match, when he was immediately culpable for at least 2 goals. Unless they park the bus, I don’t see how our attack would have any problem tearing them to shreds.

  15. BBC comment after the penalty at 90 minutes:

    > Liverpool 1-3 Crystal Palace

    > “The challenge is a foot outside the box. There’s the guy who is going to referee the FA Cup final.”

    Gee, we get to look forward to this.

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