The simple trick that will take Arsenal racing up the league next season

By Bulldog Drummond

This season Arsenal have the third highest number of wins of any club in the league.  Only Manchester City and Liverpool have won more games, which says an awful lot about Arsenal.

The problem is that most of the games we didn’t win we have lost – we have in fact the lowest number of draws of any club in the league.  Just three.  Compare that with seven clubs who count their draws in double figures!

In terms of goals scored and goals conceded we are the sixth highest for goals scored and the sixth lowest for goals conceded in the league.  And not surprisingly therefore in terms of goal difference we are sixth in the league.

Now, these figures give us clues as to what the manager will try and do next season to improve our league position, and I suspect that a key feature will be that this season Arsenal have lost five games by a single goal.  Here are the games lost by one goal…

Date Game Res Score
2 Dec 2021 Manchester United v Arsenal L 3-2
6 Dec 2021 Everton v Arsenal L 2-1
1 Jan 2022 Arsenal v Manchester City L 1-2
9 Apr 2022 Arsenal v Brighton and Hove Albion L 1-2
16 Apr 2022 Southampton v Arsenal L 1-0

What is interesting about that list is that these games come against teams from across the whole spectrum of the League table.

Now we can add in the drawn games that could have been won.

Date Match Res Score
2 Oct 2021 Brighton and Hove Albion v Arsenal D 0-0
18 Oct 2021 Arsenal v Crystal Palace D 2-2
23 Jan 2022 Arsenal v Burnley D 0-0

Now we are three points and a lot of goals behind Chelsea – so let us say four points – four more points gained through the season would have had Arsenal in third.   Looking at the tables above, two of those one-goal defeats which had been turned into draws, and any one of those draws becoming a victory, would have given us the four points needed for third place.

Of course, some will immediately be critical, saying that aiming for third is a lack of ambition, but anyone who has worked in a successful business will know that the safest way to expand or develop the business is through clear, attainable projects, rather than going around saying “we are going to be the best because I say so”.

Finally, let’s have a quick look at the progress being made compared with recent seasons…

Pos Season P W D L F A GD Pts
4 2021/22 34 20 3 11 54 41 13 63
9 2020/21 34 14 7 13 46 37 9 49
8 2019/20 34 12 14 8 50 42 8 50
5 2018/19 34 20 6 8 68 43 25 66
6 2017/18 34 17 6 11 66 46 20 57
6 2016/17 34 19 6 9 66 42 24 63
3 2015/16 34 18 9 7 58 34 24 63

So we are now back to the position we were in, in 2015/16 under Arsene Wenger.  This was the last season in which we made the top four – in fact in 2015/16 we finished runners up.

However, although our points total is the same as then our goal difference is 11 goals worse than it was in the 2015/16 season under Wenger.   But this is only the second time since Mr Wenger left that we have made the 63 point mark by this stage of the season.

In 2015/16 we were unbeaten in our last ten league games

Date Match Res Score
5 Mar 2016 Tottenham Hotspur v Arsenal D 2-2
19 Mar 2016 Everton v Arsenal W 0-2
2 Apr 2016 Arsenal v Watford W 4-0
9 Apr 2016 West Ham United v Arsenal D 3-3
17 Apr 2016 Arsenal v Crystal Palace D 1-1
21 Apr 2016 Arsenal v West Bromwich Albion W 2-0
24 Apr 2016 Sunderland v Arsenal D 0-0
30 Apr 2016 Arsenal v Norwich City W 1-0
8 May 2016 Manchester City v Arsenal D 2-2
15 May 2016 Arsenal v Aston Villa W 4-0

So in the last four games it was two draws and two victories – enough to take us to second.   This time two draws and two victories might be enough to give us fourth or even third… but three victories for Tottenham would see them overtake us.

Pos Team P W D L F A GD Pts
1 Manchester City 34 26 5 3 84 21 63 83
2 Liverpool 34 25 7 2 86 22 64 82
3 Chelsea 34 19 9 6 68 29 39 66
4 Arsenal 34 20 3 11 54 41 13 63
5 Tottenham Hotspur 34 19 4 11 59 39 20 61

I’d prefer to see three victories for us.  Just to be on the safe side.

3 Replies to “The simple trick that will take Arsenal racing up the league next season”

  1. So apart from one season the only person who has done worse han Arteta is Arteta.
    Thats progress

  2. Alan – perhaps state of the club when Arteta arrived and the pandemic have had a negative influence on Arsenal during the first 1,5 years of Arteta’s tenure?

    We had lots of internal and external obstacles, and he arrived to a chaotic club in December 2019. It seems like you blatantly are ignoring facts and are judging him solely on results.

    From my point of view no manager could have performed consistent in our tense and very negative atmosphere during that period of time.

  3. Arsenal has progressed a fair bit this season but the fact that they are only 3 pts behind Chelsea is less due to Arsenal but more due to Chelsea’s general collapse in form over the last 10 games.
    At Chelsea’s current form, Arsenal still has a shot at third if they keep up their recent good form.

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