By Bulldog Drummond
“All the news that fits” is a phrase thrown at newspapers who endlessly promote their own agenda through their choice of stories. And choice is important. Of course there are some stories that all the newspapers will cover, but actually the number of these is quite small. England matches, the resignation or sacking of a PL manager… but otherwise it is a matter of finding all the news that fits with the media’s existing agenda.
And in this the media follow each other. Although everyone likes a scoop, the media doesn’t want to be seen as out of the loop, ploughing its own furrow etc etc. They like to be in the mainstream – and this applies to football as everything. if something is not mentioned elsewhere, it is unlikely that the rest of the media will touch it.
And there is one more point: they love the negative. Negative, for the media is empowerment, because it suggests that “we, the media, can see what’s wrong and how to put it right. We are in the know. It is only the people in power who are the obstacles to change. Listen to us. Read our words. We know.
Because of the enormous power of the media, and because very few criticise the media and point out its omissions and errors, Untold gets criticised for the number of commentaries we run on the way the media treat Arsenal. We are, I am told, obsessed by the media although the number of such stories we run is but a tiny fraction of the number of negative Arsenal stories that newspapers and websites like the Mirror and its subsidiary Football.London publish.
So I thought this morning, instead of focusing on the fact that Arsenal have lost their first three games of a season we could look at another equally valid (if not more valid) statistic. Instead of “how many games has the team lost at the start of the season” I thought we could look at “how long it is since each of the top teams has won a trophy?”
And working from this point on I then thought we could see how many trophies we have won since our rivals have won something. Surely as valid stats as the ones about when Arsenal last lost the first three games.
In doing this I am not trying to hide the fact that we didn’t win anything in 2020/21, nor the fact that I would have liked us to win one or two of our opening games – but rather just put into focus how long some clubs’ supporters have been waiting for a trophy.
Since we last won a trophy – the FA Cup in 2020 – there have been five trophies up for grab: The Champions League, The Europa League, the FA Cup, the League Cup and of course the Premier League.
Three teams got into the action in 2021 when we won nothing: Chelsea, Manchester City and Leicester City.
In what follows we can see the teams that have not won anything more recently than us (Liverpool, Manchester United, Tottenham and assorted other occasional winners back to West Ham in 1980 who you will recall won the cup in that year – at least you will recall if you were there).
|Club||Date||Most recent trophy||Arsenal trophies since|
|Chelsea||29 May 2021||Champions League|
|Manchester City||23 May 2021||Premier League; Lge Cup|
|Leicester City||15 May 2021||FA Cup|
|Arsenal||1 August 2020||FA Cup||We won!|
|Liverpool||5 June 2020||Premier League||1 FA Cup|
|Manchester United||24 May 2017||Europa League||1 FA Cup|
|Tottenham Hotspur||24 February 2008||Football League Cup||4 FA Cups|
|Aston Villa||24 March 1996||Football League Cup||8 FA Cups, 3 PL titles|
|Everton||20 May 1995||FA Cup||8 FA Cups, 3 PL titles|
|West Ham United||May 1980||FA Cup||2 Lge Cups, 5 Lge titles, 8 FA Cups, 1 CWC.|
So since the last Liverpool trophy, we’ve won the FA Cup, and the same with Manchester United who won the Europa League in 2017.
But it is as we go down the table a little more that the numbers become interesting. For example since Tottenham last won a trophy we have won four FA Cups. Going further down the table, since Aston Villa last won a trophy we have won an astonishing eight FA Cups and three Premier League titles – a set of figures that is replicated with Everton.
And as for West Ham now trying to convince everyone that they are a “big club” what with them coming sixth last season and having a stadium they don’t have to pay for, since they actually won anything we have won two league cups, five league titles, eight FA Cups and the Cup Winners’ Cup.
Of course, like everyone, I would like us to be doing better this season, but perhaps because I have been watching matches for many a long year, and don’t believe the commentators on radio and TV, I actually have a better sense of perspective than some others.
It makes me see this current situation as a blip, nothing more. The general trend will be resumed.
The statistical enquiry of 2021 that the media totally ignored
How the media created an alternative story that Arsenal failed in 2020/21, when in fact Arsenal brought about a revolution
- Which PL clubs foul the most and which are fouled the most?
- Behold: The dirtiest teams in the PL last season; and the one that were fouled the most
- Making up statistics about Arsenal is ok… until someone bothers to check.
- New fouls and yellow card data suggest refs are reacting to club ploys.
- Arsenal keeper to be replaced by 8 year old who’s never played football
- 2020/21: The key data tables
- Clubs are showing signs of fighting back at journalists
- Are Arsenal really making progress, or are we starting to slip back?
- Luton 3 Arsenal 4: maybe it is time to say positive things
- Luton v Arsenal – the referee, the team, Saka and Cliff Bastin
- Luton Town – how do they play the game. The tackles, fouls and cards.