By Bulldog Drummond
As ever we’ll take a peek at the very simple comparison table that has been shown to give one of the better forms of prediction for forthcoming matches – the recent games taking into account where they were played and what competition they were in.
Of late Arsenal’s away form has been rather good when it comes to league games
|28 Feb 2021||Leicester City v Arsenal||W||1-3||Premier League|
|06 Mar 2021||Burnley v Arsenal||D||1-1||Premier League|
|21 Mar 2021||West Ham United v Arsenal||D||3-3||Premier League|
|11 Apr 2021||Sheffield United v Arsenal||W||0-3||Premier League|
|02 May 2021||Newcastle United v Arsenal||W||0-2||Premier League|
|12 May 2021||Chelsea v Arsenal||W||0-1||Premier League|
And let’s have a look at Crystal Palace’s home form.
|28 Feb 2021||Crystal Palace v Fulham||D||0-0||Premier League|
|03 Mar 2021||Crystal Palace v Manchester United||D||0-0||Premier League|
|13 Mar 2021||Crystal Palace v West Bromwich||W||1-0||Premier League|
|10 Apr 2021||Crystal Palace v Chelsea||L||1-4||Premier League|
|01 May 2021||Crystal Palace v Manchester City||L||0-2||Premier League|
|16 May 2021||Crystal Palace v Aston Villa||W||3-2||Premier League|
Palace’s two home wins have been against teams who we might call “crumbling” when it comes to this season. Aston Villa started with an absolute flourish but have declined of late and West Bromwich under their manager with the well-known tactics have been relegated.
Our draw with West Ham showed a remarkable fighting spirit, but Burnley… well they seem to have a set of rules agreed with referees all of their own.
But overall, very satisfactory. Four wins, two draws for us, two wins, two draws and two defeats for them.
So, to move on to the second table that has also helped quite a lot in seeing where things will go in a forthcoming game. Tackles, fouls and yellow cards. What do we have to worry about from the referee.
As we can see, Arsenal (following their strategic plan) have cut the number of tackles down, and remain the least tackling club in the league. As a result we give away fewer fouls than before and get fewer yellow cards than before.
But this is not because we are bad at tackling, but because of the propensity for referees to give fouls against Arsenal and yellow cards against Arsenal much more readily than any other club.
Palace have a foul given against them far less often than Arsenal for each tackle, and a yellow card given against them far less often for each foul. As the final row shows they have committed 66 more fouls than Arsenal but only got four more yellow cards.
In short they get away with it far more than Arsenal – which is why (because this happens across the League) Arsenal have had to cut down on their tackling. This is probably why the Premier League’s own statistics that are available on line are incomplete. They refuse to show the total of fouls per team, and have done all season.
Two final tables for this opening review – the home and away difference…
|12||Crystal Palace home||18||6||5||7||19||29||-10||23|
Clearly we are much stronger away than Palace are at home, with a goal difference 21 better and seven more points gained. These figures suggest a 2-1 win to Arsenal despite the fact that they will be able to tackle and foul far more than us before any action is taken.
So far it is looking rather promising.
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