By Bulldog Drummond
The videos of the highlights of all four previous matches between Arsenal and Villareal are now available on the Arsenal History Society website.
Meanwhile as we approach the match against our previous manager we can ask, how do our managers compare?
The way we have chosen to do it over the years is through win percentage on first team matches. Not a perfect measure – but then no measure is. In the list below we’ve included managers with over 50 games in charge – although there is one exception.
That exception is Joe Shaw, the manager who took over from Herbert Chapman when he suddenly passed away. He’s included not only because of his life-long devotion to the club but also because in suddenly being promoted from reserve team coach to manager, he went on and won the league.
|Herbert Chapman||June 1925||Jan 1934||411||204||97||110||879||616||49.64%||2 League, 1 FA Cup|
|Harry Bradshaw||June 1899||April 1904||235||118||44||73||403||237||50.21%|
|Mikel Arteta||Dec 2019||Present||77||40||16||21||110||66||51.95%||FA Cup|
|Unai Emery||May 2018||Nov 2019||78||43||16||19||152||100||55.13%|
|Arsène Wenger||Oct 1996||May 2018||1,235||707||280||248||2,156||1,147||57.25%||3 League, 7 FA Cup|
|Joe Shaw||Jan 1934||May 1934||23||14||3||6||44||29||60.87%||1 League|
Of the long term managers Mr Wenger is out in front. Some people expect Chapman’s figure to be higher, but the fact is that after his first season in which Arsenal came runners up, Arsenal then had a series of seasons in which they came 11th, 10th, 9th and 14th before winning the league.
As we can see, at present Mr Arteta is some way behind Mr Emery, although we are at the moment when both have managed virtually the same number of Arsenal games. In those 77 / 78 games Mr Emery won 43, while Mr Arteta won 40.
The big difference of course is goals. Under Mr Emery Arsenal scored 38% more goals (an extra 42 in fact), but also let in and extra 34.
So what of the teams?
Sportmole suggest it will be a 1-1 draw, which of course would be ok. They give us
Chambers, Holding, Gabriel, Xhaka;
Saka, Odegaard, Pepe;
The Express go for
Chambers, Gabriel, Holding, Tierney;
Partey, Xhaka Odegaard
The Hard Tackle offer
Bellerin, Holding, Gabriel, Xhaka;
Saka, Odegaard, Pepe;
That looks less likely to me. I am not sure Eddie Nketiah looked at ease in the last match and if Lacazette and/or Aubameyang are fit, as we have been told, then I’d play one of them and replace him on the hour with the other.
Certainly also if Tierney can come back in that releases Xhaka into midfield where he has been incredibly effective not just in his work on the ball, but his direction of the team, which of course can be done more readily from the middle.
And no Smith Rowe in the above – when he has been so good. Maybe I’ve missed the fact that he is injured… it wouldn’t be the first time.
But the Standard come to my rescue (now there’s a sentence you won’t ever have seen on Untold before).
Chambers, Holding, Mari, Xhaka;
Saka, Odegaard, Smith Rowe;
The Daily Mail have a huge headline saying “Everything to know ahead of kick-off” and then have such questions as
- When is Villarreal vs Arsenal?
- How to watch the Europa League semi-final?
but they won’t dirty their hands with a team prediction.
But if you want something good to watch, the videos of all four matches between the two teams is on the Arsenal History Society site.
- The stupidest thing said about Arsenal this week
- WSL North London Derby – reflections on the game at the Emirates
- Arsenal have not got the youngest team in the PL. Or have they?
- Arsenal are the most fouled team in the Premier League. Why?
- Partey setback, AFC man hauled off, new C Ronaldo signing, Arteta desperate