By Tony Attwood
If you have been a regular reader of Untold you’ll know that while many commentators are very selective in the matches they choose to draw conconclusions, especially as to how Arsenal are doing (such as when they concluded that Arteta should leave on the basis of the first three games of last season), we tend to be more interested in current form – for example as shown by the last six league games played.
So looking at that once again we find that Tottenham and Liverpool are the two Big Seven teams that are slipping behind the pace in recent history as shown by the Last Six table… As we see, Arsenal have slipped down to fourth but are only one point off Newcastle and Chelsea at the top. Leicester City are very much finally in recovery mode, which means it will soon be time to look at their tackles, fouls, cards and penalty statistics once again.
|7||West Ham U||6||3||1||2||8||4||4||10|
Tottenham however, a club that was very much talked up pre-season as a shoo-in for a top-four position come the end of the season, are down to ninth in the last six games list. Only Liverpool of the Big Seven are below them, with a very average two wins, two draws and two defeats.
So what do Tottenham’s recent results look like? They opened the run with a fine victory over Leicester, except at that time everyone was beating Leicester who were in fact bottom of the league. They did pick up two more wins but then games against other members of the Big Seven have suggested that they are slipping behind the power of the rest of those clubs. Here are the recent results.
|17 Sep 2022||Tottenham Hotspur v Leicester City||W||6-2||Premier League|
|01 Oct 2022||Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur||L||3-1||Premier League|
|08 Oct 2022||Brighton and Hove Albion v Tottenham Hotspur||W||0-1||Premier League|
|15 Oct 2022||Tottenham Hotspur v Everton||W||2-0||Premier League|
|19 Oct 2022||Manchester United v Tottenham Hotspur||L||2-0||Premier League|
|23 Oct 2022||Tottenham Hotspur v Newcastle United||L||1-2||Premier League|
So Tottenham are slipping a bit. But what about over a longer period? Here for the first time we can now also offer another table which gives a deeper insight into how clubs are doing across the last 100 games.
This obviously includes the 11 or 12 games this season, the 38 last season (2021/22), the 38 of the season before (2020/21, and the 12 or 13 games from the end of 2019/20.
Now we know that Arsenal struggled through quite a bit of this period finishing 8th in 2020/21, and 8th in 2019/20. And yet over the 100 games we are fourth.
Of course in this regard Fulham, Bournemouth and Brentford benefit by having had some time in the Championship, but the fact is that while many commentators have seen Arsenal as a club that has been in deep decline from which we are only now recovering, the decline wasn’t that deep and as we’ve suggested in the past the recovery started some time ago.
Yes, we are some way behind Manchester City, but then so is everyone else!
Meanwhile, the media is returning to the old game of suggesting that Arsenal need more players (a touchy subject since until now they have been saying this is because the Arsenal squad is too small
Considering this the Sun says “Few people at the Emirates expected the team to be challenging for the title,” but there is no evidence to support this assertion. I get the feeling that the use of various tables showing the clubs progress suggested that Arsenal could challenge – especially with the expenditure of over £90m net this summer, and £125m the summer before.
So given the oddity of that statement, we don’t really feel that the follow-up line “there are already concerns that the surprise table toppers are already starting to feel the pace,” has any validity.
The paper then says Arsenal are focussing on a deal with Palmeiras for Danilo claiming Arsenal “were prepared to pay £22m but the Brazilian League leaders were not interested in selling their young star while they were still involved in the Copa Libertadores.
“But with the Brazilian season finishing before next month’s World Cup finals, Arsenal believe that Palmeiras could be willing to cash in on Danilo in January and will test their resolve with an improved £26million bid.”
Danilo played an astonishing 57 games in the various competitions they have in Brazil, scoring seven goals. After that many games, the Premier League should seem like a doddle.