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June 2021

Middlesbrough v Arsenal: ways of ending a bad run of away results

by Bulldog Drummond

In the last post I pointed out the problems we have been having with the away form of late, but such was the success earlier in the season that our away form for the whole season is still balanced between wins and defeats.  Not as good as we would like of course but still a basis on which to build – if we can just get out of the current run.

What ought to help us is that Middlesbrough’s home form is a lot worse than our away form across the season – so this really ought to be the time to break through, stop the members of the away support with a propensity to do it, from jeering, and get the win we need.

The injury league table from physioroom meanwhile is still resolutely not showing Arsenal at the top, as the media like to proclaim

# TEAM No of injuries Last man down
1 Liverpool 7 R Klavan
2 Everton 6 M Besic
3 Crystal Palace 5 L Remy
4 Hull City 5 D Meyler
5 Sunderland 5 B Jones
6 Watford 5 C Cathcart
7 West Ham United 5 M Antonio
8 Burnley 5 S Arfield
9 Bournemouth 5 J Wilshere
10 Middlesbrough 5 J Husband
11 Stoke City 4 I Afellay
12 Southampton 4 V van Dijk
13 Manchester United 4 J Mata
14 Tottenham Hotspur 4 M Vorm
15 Manchester City 4 J Stones
16 Leicester City 4 I Slimani
17 Arsenal 3 D Ospina
18 Swansea City 3 J Cork
19 Chelsea 1 T Courtois
20 West Bromwich Albion 0

Our three players out are Ospina (expected back next weekend), Lucas, with no date announced for his return, and Santi Cazorla who will be back next season.

Middlesbrough have five men out, but according to Physioroom all should be clear to play today – which makes it all a bit confusing.  They will of course be without Calum Chambers who has played 18 league games and 2 FA Cup games for them this season.

But what this means for Arsenal is that Cech ought to be returning along with Koscielny.

Generally we do well against Middlesbrough although we did have a blip at the turn of the century with three defeats in four games between 30 November 1999 (where we lost on penalties in the league cup) and then two league defeats (2-1 away and 0-3 at home) with just a single 0-1 away win to Arsenal sandwiched in between.

Of late however it has been much better with just one defeat in the last nine – the start of the run being the 7-0 win in 2006.  But turned around the other way, we have only had three wins against them in the last nine, which makes it look a bit more worrying.

Date Game Res Score Competition
14 Jan 2006 Arsenal v Middlesbrough W 7-0 Premier League
09 Sep 2006 Arsenal v Middlesbrough D 1-1 Premier League
03 Feb 2007 Middlesbrough v Arsenal D 1-1 Premier League
09 Dec 2007 Middlesbrough v Arsenal L 2-1 Premier League
15 Mar 2008 Arsenal v Middlesbrough D 1-1 Premier League
13 Dec 2008 Middlesbrough v Arsenal D 1-1 Premier League
26 Apr 2009 Arsenal v Middlesbrough W 2-0 Premier League
15 Feb 2015 Arsenal v Middlesbrough W 2-0 FA Cup
22 Oct 2016 Arsenal v Middlesbrough D 0-0 Premier League

Who Scored has Middlesbrough’s strengths as aerial duels and stealing the ball from the opposition while our strengths remain the same – as long as we can put them into effect on the pitch.  Here’s the list of Arsenal’s strengths as based on the statistics.

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Attacking down the wings
Very Strong
Creating chances using through balls
Creating chances through individual skill
Coming back from losing positions
Creating scoring chances
Finishing scoring chances
Stealing the ball from the opposition
Defending set pieces

As everyone knows, we have lost four consecutive away matches in the Premier League for the first time since April 1995.   At that time George Graham had been sacked and temporary management was in place.  The run that time went:

Game Date Opposition Venue Score Pos
32 08.03.1995 Blackburn Rovers away L1-3 9
33 19.03.1995 Newcastle United away L0-1 13
34 22.03.1995 Manchester United away L0-3 14
36 08.04.1995 Queens Park Rangers away L1-3 12
39 17.04.1995 Aston Villa away W4-0 10

with that win in game 39 against Aston Villa changing the run.

We’ve not lost five in a row since December 1984.    That run ended with a win against Newcastle – but what is most interesting about this run is that it started at a time when we were top of the league.  The manager was Don Howe

Game Date Opposition Venue Score Pos
12 27.10.1984 West Ham United away L1-3 1
13 02.11.1984 Manchester United away L2-4 1
16 25.11.1984 Sheffield Wednesday away L1-2 4
18 08.12.1984 Southampton away L0-1 4
21 26.12.1984 Norwich City away L0-1 4
22 29.12.1984 Newcastle United away W3-1 4

Next up: the teams

Recent Posts

Middlesbrough v Arsenal. Booing Héctor Bellerín probably doesn’t help very much

Middlesbrough v Arsenal; 17 April 2017 – The Match Officials. If we end up with 11 on the pitch we’ll be lucky.


5 comments to Middlesbrough v Arsenal: ways of ending a bad run of away results

  • Josif

    If Arsenal had won two matches v Boro in 2007-08, we would have won the league.

    The reverse fixture was a painful start of our lifr without Santi. We were lucky to stay undefeated as Cech gave his best performance of the season. Dean’s presence didn’t help either but it was a self-inflicted draw.

    A victory is much needed, especially given our fixture list until the end of the season. The players have to step up and justify the manager’s trust in them. It’s time to make an apology to him ON THE PITCH. Sentences like “they wanted it more” are awful and should never again come out of an Arsenal player mouth.

  • Pat

    I agree Josif. I don’t know what possesses a player to tell the press ‘They wanted it more.’ All you are doing is mis calling yourself and your team mates and giving the press a field day. And I don’t see how it can ever possibly be true. When on earth do the Arsenal players not want to win?

  • Mandy Dodd

    Guess it depends what they was really alluding to….lack of desire, lack of confidence, lack of plans, unsettled team?
    But agree, those words do not sound good at all , at face value, they put the club in a bad light, not the prime responsibility of the clubs captain that day.
    Looking for a big improvement in today’s game, would like to see Per involved

  • Menace

    What Theo meant was they were fouling much harder than acceptable. Thats the simple measure of who wants it more. Arsenal wanted to retain players on the pitch & didn’t kick the living daylights out of the Palace players.

  • Pat

    Then Theo should have said something a bit more similar to that in my opinion. That is nothing to do with wanting it more. As you say, Menace, it has to do with knowing you can kick the living daylights out of Arsenal and get away with it.