GoonerNews

Arsenal News

Live Arsenal News

Arsenal latest news

Arsenal News & Transfers
As featured on NewsNow: Arsenal newsArsenal News 24/7

Arsenal News, Only Arsenal, Blogs, Transfer News

Archives

November 2021
M T W T F S S
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
2930  
Arsenal News
The Soccerlinks Hit List
November 2021
M T W T F S S
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
2930  

Link Refer

Archives

e-soccer
Premier League Betting and Odds

Which PL clubs foul more than they are fouled?

By Tony Attwood

This table shows the fouls committed by each team and the fouls that are committed against them.   The final column shows the two as a percentage.  If the number is over 100% the club fouls more than it is fouled against.  If it is under 100% the club commits fewer fouls than the opposition commit against the club.

Team Total fouls by team Fouls per game by team Total fouls by opposition Fouls per game by opposition Fouls committed / Fouls endured (%)
Arsenal 345 9.08 421 11.08 81.95
Aston Villa 439 11.55 567 14.92 77.43
Brighton and Hove 427 11.24 376 9.89 113.56
Burnley 384 10.11 403 10.61 95.29
Chelsea 433 11.39 377 9.92 114.85
Crystal Palace 409 10.76 438 11.53 93.38
Everton 386 10.16 409 10.76 94.38
Fulham 484 12.74 387 10.18 125.06
Leeds United 427 11.24 432 11.37 98.84
Leicester City 416 10.95 440 11.58 94.55
Liverpool 396 10.42 355 9.34 111.55
Manchester City 361 9.5 389 10.24 92.8
Manchester United 452 11.89 411 10.82 109.98
Newcastle United 388 10.21 432 11.37 89.81
Sheffield United 459 12.08 304 8 150.99
Southampton 426 11.21 438 11.53 97.26
Tottenham Hotspur 439 11.55 494 13 88.87
West Bromwich A 404 10.63 430 11.32 93.95
West Ham United 374 9.84 367 9.66 101.91
Wolverhampton W 425 11.18 404 10.63 105.2

If the result in the final column comes out at below 100 then the team is fouled more than it fouls.  Above 100 the reverse is the case.

Obviously a lot of teams are pretty much in the mid-range – they give as good as they take.  West Ham for example have a figure of 101.91.  They were fouled 374 times last season and they dished it out 367 times.  So they are neither using fouling as a way of breaking up attacks nor of disrupting the mindset of the opposition, nor are they “doing an Arsenal” and taking fouling out of the game in order to avoid giving the attackers extra space and another assault.

But of course not all clubs did this last season, and I suspect that although the media made no comment at all on Arsenal’s change of fouling tactics last season, as the word got around of what Arsenal were doing, other clubs began to follow.

Top foulers last season were Fulham committing 484 fouls in league games.  Second were Sheffield United at 459.  But fouling is not always the game of the lower classes for third were Manchester United with 452.  Fourth we had Aston Villa on 439 – a club that tried a very curious tactic, but one that ultimately didn’t quite work.

Bottom of the fouling league was Arsenal with 345 – and if you have been reading Untold for a while you’ll know about that.  Second were Manchester City with 361.  West Ham committed 374, and Burnley only got 384 – which is not what I expected.

And a bit of a surprise with Manchester United being second top foulers.  On the other hand we’d expect Arsenal to be at the bottom because this was the Arteta policy to get us out of the mess that Emery’s style of resulted in with Arsenal being penalised all the time.  It was almost as if Emery couldn’t believe that referees could be that biased, and so had to keep on playing in the same way.

But what about the other way around?  Who receives the most fouls?

Top of the receiving league: Aston Villa at 567.  Second were Tottenham at 494 – which is a huge gap.  Third were Palace at 438 fourth were Leicester with 440.

Watch Arsenal Live Streams With StreamFootball.tv

Bottom of the receiving league: Sheffield United 304, then Liverpool 355, West Ham 367, and Fulham 387.

So Sheffield United fouling like mad, but not receiving many back.  Aston Villa were a top fouling side but received more back than anyone else.   What’s going on?

To see this more clearly we can look at this as a percentage.  If you foul as much as you get fouled the answer is 100%.  If other teams foul you far more than you foul them your figure is below 100%.  If you kick the hell out of them and they don’t respond your figures are over 100%.

The extremes of teams that fouled but were not fouled back are Sheffield United (150.99%).  Second were Fulham with 125.06%.   So clearly clubs were willing to let Sheffield U and Fulham trip and kick like mad, take the free kicks and endlessly advance.  They didn’t respond out of revenge – there was no need.

Those clubs were kicking the opposition and harming themselves. Referees got to know what they were up to, and were blowing for almost every tackle.   If the opposition had retaliated the ref might well have reduced his punishment of the fouling club rather than risk sending off half the team.

What about teams that didn’t foul much but got fouled a lot.  That’s an interesting technique since it allows  the players to whine at the ref that they are being kicked off the pitch while they are the innocent bystanders.    Aston Villa got the lowest percentage (ie they got fouled but didn’t foul back) and got 77.43%.  Arsenal were second with 81.95%.  Tottenham were third with 88.87% and fourth were Newcastle with 89.91%.

I certainly think this was deliberate by Arsenal, who have suffered for years when playing clubs that just kick them off the park.  Reducing Arsenal’s own tackles dramatically not only stopped yellow cards against Arsenal, but also through no retaliation they changed the referees’ attitude.

Certainly Arsenal took the deliberate policy last season of not fouling nearly as much as they had under Mr Emery.  (This is largely why Arsenal had such a hard start to last season, they were trying to get used to the complete reversal of Mr Emery’s approach).

But of course tactics can change over the season.  So which clubs evolved in the last two thirds of the season, and which declined?   Here is the table on Christmas Day last year, showing at the end of the table where the club was, and whether it improved or declined.

Team P W D L F A GD Pts End of season +/-
1 Liverpool 14 9 4 1 36 19 17 31 3 -2
2 Everton 14 8 2 4 25 19 6 26 10 -8
3 Tottenham Hotspur 13 7 4 2 25 12 13 25 7 -4
4 Leicester City 13 8 0 5 24 17 7 24 5 -1
5 Southampton 14 7 3 4 25 19 6 24 15 -10
6 Manchester City 13 6 5 2 19 12 7 23 1 +5
7 Manchester United 12 7 2 3 22 19 3 23 2 +5
8 Chelsea 13 6 4 3 26 14 12 22 4 +4
9 West Ham United 13 6 3 4 21 16 5 21 6 +3
10 Wolverhampton Wanderers 13 6 2 5 13 17 -4 20 13 -3
11 Aston Villa 11 6 1 4 21 13 8 19 11 0
12 Newcastle United 13 5 3 5 17 22 -5 18 12 0
13 Crystal Palace 14 5 3 6 19 25 -6 18 14 -1
14 Leeds United 13 5 2 6 22 24 -2 17 9 +5
15 Arsenal 14 4 2 8 12 18 -6 14 8 +7
16 Brighton and Hove Albion 13 2 5 6 15 21 -6 11 16 0
17 Fulham 14 2 4 8 13 23 -10 10 18 -1
18 Burnley 12 2 4 6 6 18 -12 10 17 +1
19 West Bromwich Albion 13 1 4 8 10 26 -16 7 19 0
20 Sheffield United 13 0 1 12 7 24 -17 1 20 0

Those changes are quite large – with Arsenal, as we know, making  the greatest advance going up seven places.  Leeds and the two Mancunian teams went up five.  Southampton and Everton fell apart.

It is clearly not just a case of getting the tactics right at the start of the season – it is having the vision to change the tactics and sustaining that vision.  That is what Arsenal did and why we had such a superb second two thirds of the season and why Everton fell apart.

Thanks to James Curtis of Curtis Associates Research Ltd for preparing this data.

8 comments to Which PL clubs foul more than they are fouled?

  • Raj

    The 2 sets of data so little correlation to each other so making conclusions is difficult, and referees Bias is difficult to assess.

  • Raj

    To work out Bias we need info on each tackle taken place and is it a foul, and if so committed, why? So Fouls need to be categorized and classed, then if a yellow or red card was given and reason why?

    These need to over 2 or 3 seasons, then we can report the data as information of probable bias, and get it published as news.

  • GoingGoingGooner

    The table only list fouls that were called, unfortunately.

    We’ve all seen Mr. Dean ignore fouls for 87 minutes and then call a few fouls or give cautions late in a match which, to the jaded eye, served to only even the numbers after the outcome was no longer in doubt.

    I’m not certain how to get around this short of repeating that magnificent effort of a few years back of getting our own referees to call the matches for Untold.

  • GoingGoingGooner

    Watford overran our midfield the last part of the first half; we had trouble retaining the ball

  • GoingGoingGooner

    A few changes at half time (added ESR, started pressing hard) and we completely took over the match.

  • GoingGoingGooner

    Question: The referee was a person of colour, as was one of the assistants…Are there any referees in the Premier League that are not white?…interesting considering the number of Black Britons (and foreigners) that are on the rosters.

  • Walter Broeckx

    GoingGoingGooner, he just fluffed his chance on getting a promotion by giving Arsenal a penalty 😉 The difference one ESR came on was immense…. We suddenly stepped it up a few gears and Watford was lucky that the score was only 4-1 as we Laca could have had a hattrick if it wouldn’t have been for the post and some near misses

  • “The receiving league” – I note that Villa, Totts and Leicester occupy 3 of the top 4 places. Could it be connected to the fact that Grealish, Kane and Vardy all have a preference for a grassy diet, especially during matches.