Southampton v Arsenal: the tactics, the statistics and past results

By Bulldog Drummond
And so as we approach the game lets have a quick look at a few stats that tend to get lost amidst the generalised chit chat and three line bloggettas.  These first sets of figures are derived from stats on
These figures are for Arsenal away games, with p/g meaning “per game” as I am sure you knew already.
Cards 29/0
Possession 56%
Pass Success % 83%
Aerial Duel won p/g 17.3
Average Rating 6.87
Shots conceded p/g 12.3
Shots blocked p/g 2.7
Tackles p/g 18.5
Fouls p/g 10.9
Interceptions p/g 13.6
Shots p/g 12.6
Shots on target p/g 4.5
Dribbles won p/g 12.1
Fouls won p/g 9.6
Offsides p/g 1.7

And for Southampton we present, of course the home figures

Cards 18/2
Possession 53%
Pass Success % 80%
Aerial Duel won p/g 17.5
Average Rating 6.78
Shots conceded p/g 10.6
Shots blocked p/g 2.9
Tackles p/g 16.7
Fouls p/g  11.4
Interceptions p/g 14.2
Shots p/g 15.9
Shots on target p/g 4.8
Dribbles won p/g 9.5
Fouls won p/g 11.6
Offsides p/g 2

Southampton come off noticeably better with cards against them at home as opposed to Arsenal with cards against them away – the first figure is yellow cards and second red.  However Southampton give away more fouls at home than Arsenal do away – and yet as just noted, Arsenal get many more cards.  Of course it could be that Arsenal’s fouls are “worse” but I wonder…

Certainly Arsenal win two fewer free kicks as a results of fouls against them in each away game than Southampton do at home.  Curious that.

But on a more positive note we can see that both will be vying for possession – and clearly both sides cannot keep their possession rate up to the average levels.  Southampton at home you will notice take almost four more shots than Arsenal away to score each goal (15.9 against 12.6).

Whether or not Arsenal have any chance of getting fourth spot, who can say – it is not entirely in our hands.  But nevertheless the victory over Man U was particularly welcome, and if we can show half the form we had in the Cup victory over Southampton away, then all will be well.  And for there to be any chance of fourth we do need to win this.

On the other hand Southampton’s manager is under a spot of pressure, as the club have won two games in their last eight, and scored two goals in their last four games.  And the club does have ambitions to be more than a mid-table organisation with occasional flights of fancy.  They did indeed win the FA Cup in 1965 and came second in the old First Division in 1984.  And they have been FA Cup runners’ up three times, although two of those were at the turn of the century.  The turn of the 19th/20th century that is.

Of the various items of injury news mentioned in the last post the big news was that of Virgil van Dijk the club captain and leader, who is out for the remaining games of the season.  It’s a blow for them.

So to the other snippets of statistics.

  • Southampton could win three consecutive home league games against Arsenal for the first time in 32 years.
  • Arsenal have not won a league fixture at St Mary’s in five attempts since 2003 (L2, D3).   However, Southampton have won just six of 35 Premier League meetings overall, losing 19.   A third goalless draw in a row would be a top-flight record for the club.
  • Manolo Gabbiadini got four goals in his first three appearances but has failed to score in the last five, managing just one shot on target.

From 2003 to 2014 we played 10 games against Southampton and didn’t lose a single one.  Then the tide turned (which actually in the Solent it appears to do four times in 24 hours which is rather unusual).  In the last eight we’ve lost four.  There have been three wins and a draw for Arsenal

Date Game Res Score Competition
23 Sep 2014 Arsenal v Southampton L 1-2 League Cup
03 Dec 2014 Arsenal v Southampton W 1-0 Premier League
01 Jan 2015 Southampton v Arsenal L 2-0 Premier League
26 Dec 2015 Southampton v Arsenal L 4-0 Premier League
02 Feb 2016 Arsenal v Southampton D 0-0 Premier League
10 Sep 2016 Arsenal v Southampton W 2-1 Premier League
30 Nov 2016 Arsenal v Southampton L 0-2 League Cup
28 Jan 2017 Southampton v Arsenal W 0-5 FA Cup

Our best wins against them have been 6-1 on 7 May 2003 which started the unbeaten 49, and the same score on 15 September 2012.

In 1995, Southampton had their biggest victory over us by 4-2 on 23 September.   I remember it well; I was there.   A 17 year old Alan Shearer scored a hattrick for Southampton becoming the youngest player ever to do so in the top division.  I wonder what ever happened to him.

Up next, the teams.

Southampton v Arsenal the story so far…

Southampton v Arsenal: 10 May. The Match Officials – from not very good to diabolically bad.

Southampton v Arsenal: the early injury news, plus the home v away record