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Denis Suárez joins Arsenal as we get to the “not a trophy” position.

By Tony Attwood

Without playing Arsenal have moved up to fourth in the league – the much sought after “not a trophy” position.

Team P W D L F A GD Pts
1 Liverpool 24 19 4 1 55 14 41 61
2 Manchester City 24 18 2 4 63 19 44 56
3 Tottenham Hotspur 24 18 0 6 50 24 26 54
4 Arsenal 24 14 5 5 50 33 17 47
5 Chelsea 24 14 5 5 40 23 17 47
6 Manchester United 24 13 6 5 48 35 13 45

It was Chelsea’s defeat last night that caused the rise above them, thanks to scoring 10 more goals than they have, and thanks of course to Bournemouth who knocked in four against them.  After the game Sarri said, “It’s impossible to play in such a different way between the first and second half. I don’t understand why. I don’t know exactly.”

Liverpool’s match was interesting because of the pitch which looked on TV pictures like a quagmire – rather strange for a club claiming to be one of the top clubs in the country, and which has spent so much money on players and indeed on extending the capacity of their stadium.  It is one thing to blame the pitch when playing away from home, but when the manager starts blaming his home pitch, then clearly there’s something not right.   The pitch is, after all, under the home team’s control.  Perhaps they forgot to put any drains in.

So we are back to fourth for the first time since 2 December when after defeating the tiny totts 4-2 the table looked like this…

Team P W D L F A GD Pts
1 Manchester City 14 12 2 0 43 6 37 38
2 Liverpool 14 11 3 0 27 5 22 36
3 Chelsea 14 9 4 1 30 11 19 31
4 Arsenal 14 9 3 2 32 18 14 30
5 Tottenham Hotspur 14 10 0 4 25 15 10 30
6 Everton 14 6 4 4 20 16 4 22
7 Manchester United 14 6 4 4 22 23 -1 22

Manchester City have been the big losers in the past 10 games and Manchester United the winners of course.

This time last year after 24 games we had:

  • Won 12 (this year 14)
  • Drawn 6 (this year 5)
  • Lost 6 (this year 5)
  • Scored 45 goals (this year 50)
  • Conceded 31 goals (this year 33)
  • Gained 42 points (this year 47)

So some improvement all round except for the defence – so heavily criticised last year – which is actually worse than a year ago.

Meanwhile we have signed Denis Suárez on loan – another annoying player in that he has an accent in his name and I do find accents hard going with Word Press.   It is being said that he signed a new contract with Barcelona recently, but that also he could be available to us as a permanent signing in the summer.

Mundo Deportivo have said that Suárez’ contract currently runs to 2020 and will now extend to 2021.   The loan fee for this second half of the season is €2m.

So what have we got?   A man described as a midfield player who can play on the left or in the centre’ at Sevilla he played in both positions and given the way we have experimented with left attacking forwards that presumably is where he will feature.

One report described his most natural role as being “a playmaker, receiving possession between the lines, facing goal and able to run at defenders, opening up spaces to make clever passes to team-mates or creating shooting chances for himself.”

If, as seems to be the case, Mr Emery is impressed by Sead Kolasinac’s attacking it could be that he has a plan to have both players play together overlapping on that side of the pitch, with Denis Suárez then being able to move infield if the territory gets too crowded.

I’m told Suárez took the No 6 shirt after Xavi retired, which shows Barcelona held him in great regard at that point, and overall he has played 71 times for Barcelona, although only eight times this season.

But perhaps more to the point is that he was at Sevilla with Emery, and thus the manager must know what he is getting, and how to manage and play Suárez even though reports suggest that the player did not really make a big impact during that spell.  Although the figures show him playing 47 games all told, so he couldn’t have been that bad.

What is interesting however is that in the figures above we can see that Arsenal’s prime issue is in defence and yet there seems to be no move to bring in defensive players – even though Bellerin is out for the season.  True, Koscielny’s injury is not as bad as thought, and Sokratis should be back in a week or so.  I guess it means things are that bad at the back.

Here are our new man’s figures…

Club Season League Cup Europe Total
Pld Goals Pld Goals Pld Goals Pld Goals
Sevilla  (loan) 2014–15 31 2 6 1 9 3 47 6
Villarreal 2015–16 33 4 2 0 13 1 48 5
Barcelona 2016–17 26 1 7 2 1 0 36 3
2017–18 18 2 5 1 3 0 27 3
2018–19 2 0 4 2 2 0 8 2

7 comments to Denis Suárez joins Arsenal as we get to the “not a trophy” position.

  • Gord

    This is NOT a congratulations on NOT NOT getting into the NOT NOT NOT a trophy position.

    How Arsenal could line up with Denis Suarez

    On the ground? As in they will all be standing on the ground?

    Can we end this transfer window, so that there is actually the possibility of there being news in the news?

    The only “news” I am seeing, is that Sky Sprots thinks it has friends.

  • bugdy

    To add, or rather counter, the pitch comments from Klopp; during TV highlights of some kind (can’t remember if it was MoTD or the news this morning) of the Liverpool Vs Leicester match they showed and commented on the Liverpool ground staff furiously working away to clear the penalty box of the end they were attacking, and then doing absolutely nothing to their own defensive end. Although not against the rules, but it should be, it’s not good sportsmanship is it?

  • Gord

    Welcome Denis.

    I suspect that one of the factors surrounding Denis coming in, was Emile Smith Rowe leaving. Arsenal.com now saying he has been loaned to Leipzig. Good luck Emile!

    OT: Sokratis rehab

    Sokratis is receiving something called “capacitive resistive monopolar radiofrequency (CRMRF)-based treatment”. Of course, someone is got the word “patent” in there, implying the fact that because it is patented, it must be good. Their are tons of perfectly lousy things which are patented, being good is not relevant to the patent application and approval process.

    A paper on this is: https://indiba-germany.de/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/Kumaran_Watson_20151.pdf

    This paper mentions one particular treatment, showing that it is delivering about 42W of energy as RF.

    The frequency involved is much lower in frequency than the “typical” microwave oven, and also much lower in energy rate.

    This treatment increases blood flow to the treated region.

  • Gord

    OT: GD 24

    Liverpool got a yellow in the 16th minute, which gave them a little Caution (now at 811). For 14 fouls, Liverpool got a single card. Leicester committed 6 fouls for 3 yellows.

    The median of all EPL teams was 1553.5 with a MAD of 208. This puts Liverpool at 3.6 MAD off the median. The median of the ROTP is 1596.5, with a MAD of 131.5. The Top-6 references to the ROTP distribution are:

    Liverpool 811 -6
    Chelsea 1005 -4.5
    Spuds 1173 -3.2
    Man$ity 1345 -1.9
    Arsenal 1761 1.3
    ManU 1838 1.8

    Newcastle is at -3.5 MAD.

    At the low end for treatments, it is CPalace, Watford, Chel$ea, Man$ity, ManU. Cardiff and Arsenal are the 2 teams getting kicked the most.

    As far as inflicting treatments goes, Leicester is lowest at just over 1/2 of Man$ity in second (10 treatments for 15 minutes short-handed and 1 substitution). Burnley is in third, for a whopping 57 minutes of treatment and 5 substitutions. Arsenal now 4th lowest. Some of Arsenal’s inflictions are self-inflicted, but I have no data on this for other teams. The league is being led by CPalace, Spuds and ManU. CPalace victims have been short-handed for 65 minutes and needed 10 substitutions.

  • Gord

    Some of the GD 24 foul/card data interested me. Looking up the card and foul stats from last year for the entire league, The average cards per game is 1.625 (per team) and the average fouls is 10.349, so the fouls per card is about 6.4.

    When you go playing with this by computer, you run into situations where there are more cards than fouls. Which is possible, but unlikely.

    Generating 100,000 games, the peak bin count is just below 4000. I am assuming Poisson statistics.
    10:1 3965 ManU, StateAid
    9:2 3191 Newcastle
    11:2 3074 Southampton, Fulham
    7:1 2635 Bournemouth
    14:1 1802 Liverpool, Huddersfield
    7:0 Spuds 1590
    8:3 1520 Burnley
    12:3 1413 Cardiff
    6:0 1055 Chel$ea
    14:3 803 Arsenal
    6:3 752 Man$ity, Leicester
    9:4 683 Everton
    8:4 588 Wolves, Watford, CPalace
    5:3 579 Brighton

    At least one of those Foul:Card ratios is close to most likely, and the least likely ratio is not quite a factor of 7 down.

    So there really isn’t anything unusual about any of those Foul:Card ratios.

  • Gord

    For those who sprechen (I am very poor), here is a link on Emile’s loan to Leipzig.

    https://www.dierotenbullen.com/de/aktuelles/neuigkeiten/Saison_2018_19/Leihe-Emile-Smith-Rowe.html

  • I remember when we played Milan in the CL, they dug us the side of the pitch that TW operated from, thus making it virtually impossible for him to run there.

    That was the one they ended up winning on away goals and RVP missed the sitter in the 2nd half of the 2nd leg.

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