PROMISING STATISTICS AT BOTH ENDS POINT TO BRIGHT FUTURE

by .

I feel like we’re moving out of the hysterics phase now into a more even-keeled conversation about where we are. The transfer-tweakers have stopped being important, people are a little bit more understanding of the journey, and most are on board with the idea that the players we exited were solid decisions.

Great players would have made for a nice window, but no one wants to be looking at bad deals this summer, wondering why we can’t go for proper talent.

Arteta did his piece from Dubai, his messaging was pretty clear… we’re going on a charge for top 4, the vibe at the camp is good, the fans are going to be incredibly important to the journey, the needs to be the realisation that the journey we have taken will come with bumps.

The average age of the Arsenal squad is 24, our first team usually only starts 3 players over the age of 25, Cedric Soares and Lacazette are the only players older than 29 in our squad (both 30).

Isn’t that crazy? For context:

Liverpool and City have squads about 3 years more mature than ours.

Liverpool start with five 30 year-olds and two 29-year-olds.

City has 6 players older than 29, they start 4 of them. There aren’t many sub-25 players starting on the regular up there.

‘AGE ISN’T AN EXCUSE’ until you realise that nearly every successful side that wins in the Premier League is littered with players over the age of 26 years old.

‘WE SHOULD HAVE DONE SOMETHING DIFFERENT’ we tried signing ready-made players, but it’s really hard to find the top, top talents that are older because they are so expensive.

Point here, our youth strategy is not short term, but when it matures, the hope is they’ll be absolutely elite.

Another interesting stat I found last night, is the average age of our starting defence is 23.6, and they’ve kept the joint 3rd amount of clean-sheets this season. 13 in 21 games.

We probably have the youngest defence in the league, they are already competing with Chelsea, Liverpool, and City for clean sheets. That stat really is ’10 clean sheets in 18 games’ with the new defence. Ramsdale has the best clean sheet percentage in the league, quite something, eh?

How can you not be excited about that… then imagine how good it’ll be when we have Saliba and some depth on the right. We could be building one of the best defences in the league.

There’s still plenty to be done on the attacking side of the game, but again, you don’t build a title-winning side in a season when you have our resources. The key statistic that gives me a bit of hope is that we’re joint 3rd in the league for shots per game. Remember how relevant that stat was when it was bad? Well, we’ve turned it around. The counter to this is usually ‘yeah, but bottom for shots on target’, well, surprisingly, we’re ranked 4th for shots on target.

At some point, those shots get better, and we start getting end product out of our improved statistics.

How we use our attack over the next 17 games is going to be interesting. Are the two striking options Laca and Eddie? Or will Arteta try and use Martinelli in that role. Kaya Kaynak reckons he’s been taking up #9 positions in Dubai. We’ve seen him do well there under Emery. He has all the ingredients to learn the position, so who knows what is in store.

Right, a short post today, because I’ve been on overdrive this week with content. See you in the comments. Podcast will land this weekend. Fingers crossed Balogun can impact this bland United game.

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Bankz

Bankz is here for the tr4phy

Bankz

DM, groovey, are you guys lurking around?

Bankz

Let’s do this!

Bankz

(((BOOOOOM))))

Danny

FA Cup weekend but for the first time sine 1991-92 season, we’re out of all cup competitions at the start of February.
Dark days indeed.

Johng

Europe

Bob N16

Dark days indeed…..wow!

Gazza

All looks promising until we lose at Wolves

Bergkamp63

Danny Dire !

Jamie

Boro awarded a dodgy goal at Old Trafford. Definite handball. Ref conspiracy against Utd obviously.

Killroy-TM

8th were we will finish

Bergkamp63

Balogan missed a good opportunity in the first half then hooked on the 60 min mark. Hopefully he gets better with game time.

Killroy-TM

Pedro you been going on for eons about the youngest squad if you replace youngest with inexperienced and older with experienced than it doesn’t look that good anymore does it. You need older experienced leaders in the squad, who fits that in the present squad? No mentors at AFC for me.

Bergkamp63

Pedro,

He looked ok, didn’t get too much service.

Bergkamp63

Laca
Odegaard
Elneny
Xhaka
Partey

Plenty of experiments and at international level

Bergkamp63

Experience !

Bloody autocorrect

andy1886

Not sure how we’re third in that table with the same number of shots per game as Chelsea but fewer on target (5.2 vs 5.3).

Ultimately it’s a pointless stat, the only shots that matter are the ones that result in a goal.

Redbearer

Enjoyed Ronaldo’s penalty miss earlier. Manure are full of whingers, Fernandes is even more annoying than CR7 imo… still I think they’ll win it when it goes to pens…. De Gea is usually top draw in one on one’s…. was discussing who would finish 4th if we don’t with the boys earlier and I’d hate to see the scum land it, the WHU lot hate them too and I’m not sure that the chavs hold much affection there either! Hoping that this break refreshes us to push on and get more points on the board.

Jamie

‘mon the boro, let’s go lads

Graham62

From previous post.

I wonder, does this “culture change” take into account a 29 year old dysfunctional Swiss dickhead, who’s leading by example.

Pedro, do you think Xhaka had anything to do with Aubameyang’s disagreements with Arteta.

Did you read raptora’s earlier post?

Why can’t you review things like that and give, you know, a more balanced appraisal.

Jamie

What the fuck, Mata still plays for the mancs?!

Redbearer

My bad Henderson’s there… hope the Boro boys hang in there!

englandsbest

I think (hope) Pepe will be a used often in attack

I think (hope) Eddie will score a hatful of goals

Include Saka, Martinelli, Emile, Laca, and the options are not bad at all.

WengerEagle

Anyone tell the Keeper’s they are allowed to make a save here?

Redbearer

LMFAO

WengerEagle

Aha in your face Utd!

Rich

That was brilliant

Awful game, but so glad I stayed all the way to the end

Jamie

Amazing. Get fucked

bacaryisgod

Pedro

Taking off your pro-Arteta hat for a moment, do you not have any concerns over our failure to score in the last 7 1/2 hours of play?

It’s easy to find both positives and negatives in the stats but this is the most recent and pressing cause for concern.

Time Up

It took a player to miss in order to end this boring game.

Time Up

I think Top 4 is not a trophy any more, Arsene.

Pedro has come up with “We are the youngest team trophy”.

Take that Arsene.

bacaryisgod

The youth strategy is essentially the only realistic path we could take which is why I was fully behind it. However, that strategy is only as good as the ability to retain key players within that youthful core. Where do we stand? The only risks are Martinelli and Saka. Their deals expire in two years. It stands to reason that making top 6 this season will make it more likely they’ll renew this summer but with Saka’s agent, those negotiations will likely run down to crunch time. Eddie leaving at the end of the season is only a catastrophe if… Read more »

Pedro

Bacary, two games against Liverpool, second-stringers against Forest, 20 shots and 5 on target against Burnley.

Not that worried.

Poor Ralf, what a mess United is…

bacaryisgod

Pedro

The team that lost to Forest did have 3 of our starting attacking players (Saka, Martinelli and Odegaard) and Laca came on too.

Regardless, I would rather be in our position than United. The Greenwood situation must be an absolute nightmare for team morale.

Nelson

Only an inexperienced board would put all their eggs on two players who are now negotiating pre-contracts with other teams. You think that they are still dedicated to our team. Laca is already talking to Leon. There are two teams targeting Eddie. I don’t like this development.

CaliGooner

Youth strategy is all well and good Pedro. I hope it brings us champions league BUT the real problem is in two years when saka and ESR and martinelli are big swinging dicks in the league the Manchester’s and Chelsea and Newcastle are going to buy them from us. We may sell them for 9 figures but I don’t see us winning the league or other major trophies. Players have all the power. All it takes is city to tell saka to ask to leave and Chelsea telling ESR the same thing and then all of a sudden years of… Read more »

Jamie

The problem with having so few games to play is that we’re left with a bunch of what ifs until there are actual results to talk about.

Missus is out on the razzle and I’m in my pyjamas smoking a monte cristo hitting refresh on legrove for some stimulation.

eb, give me the 411 on Haaland. Still best mates with Øde and heading to London this summer yeah?

bacaryisgod

Cali

There is a window of opportunity though.

Klopp and Guardiola won’t be around forever. They are truly generational coaches. The only way to keep our best players will be through consistent Champions League qualification and occasional title challenges.

The glimmer of hope is that KSE seems to have finally put some money into the transfer budget. If this continues we’re capable of competing.

Killroy-TM

“According to a report by Italian outlet Calciomercato.it, Real Madrid will need to fend off stiff competition from two Serie A giants in the race to sign William Saliba. The French defender, valued at €30 million by Arsenal, is also a target for AC Milan and Inter Milan.”

Arsenal’s generational manager and his ability to identify talent. Sending Saliba twice out on loan. Good luck with keeping Salubrious with that kind of interest.

raptora

“valued at €30 million by Arsenal”

Exact same money we paid for him. Imagine if true.

Pedro

Jamie, that sounds like a decadent night!

izzo

So Arteta says top 4 yet Pedro has been saying Top 6 and top 4 is a stretch. You clearly don’t know SHIT. If Arteta doesn’t achieve his goal of Top 4 then he should do the right thing and bounce.

Nigel Tufnel

The saddest part of all the comments is that Kilroy believes everything he reads on calciomercato.it.

I’m sure there’s many other gooner suckers paying the bills for that website with their clicks…. but

Read the wording lol…

Race to sign ?

With 29 months to go on his current deal. LOL

But how many are especially naive enough to believe it all and then spread it around on blogs in panic 2 and a half years before the guys contract ends. Not sure if it’s sad or actually funny.

Dark days on legrove. Indeed.

Nigel Tufnel

Bacary, So right about Klopp and Guardiola. Man City will continue to overspend to stay in the mix with any future coaches, but only occasionally dominant like currently. Liverpool are going right back to the struggle against the big spenders after Klopp. I’ll be so excited the day Gerrard takes over. But Bacary, is the Greenwood situation the only reason you’d rather be Arsenal than United right now? The magic is gone there already and they need a clear out just like we did… it will be a hard one too. With the age and prices. Greenwood was one of… Read more »

Killroy-TM

Sorry Nigel Toffeynut, forget you only believe what has been reported in the Artetaverse media, now your comment makes perfect nonsense.

Madhu

Pedro forgot that apart from youngest squad, we also have the youngest and most inexperienced coach, Technical director and CEO to boot. Beat that any PL club.

Nigel Tufnel

Kilroy,

Enjoy the next 29 months of bedwetting over Saliba. Only the people here who are losers will get caught up in that.

I’ll be trying trying to enjoy Arsenal football, and your Saliba panic won’t cross my mind in any way, whether he stays or goes. No difference to me.

In fact, I’ll continue to enjoy making fun of your self imposed misery.

DivineSherlock

The one thing I really credit Arteta for is defense , it has improved , but when you make majority of your signings in defense , you sure as hell have to improve it .

Aaron

0 goals for in 4 games, is that not a Pedro stat, but hey at least we are young.
Bottom line can we score goals, if not 8th is the new 4th.

BacaryisGod

Nigel

Greenwood isn’t the only reason we’re in better shape than Man United but they can just keep spending until something finally comes together. The Greenwood situation is so troubling for them on the footballing side because he’s their version of Saka or ESR-he really represented the club’s future. He hadn’t quite put it all together but the pieces were there for him.

Funny about Fergie-I also have a friend who saw Ferguson at a Hollywood event-no idea what he was doing there but my friend said he was the most down to earth guy you could meet.

Muppetman

When did paper rumours become fact? No one knows what will happen with him. Once again people just want to portray the doom case scenario. Just chill out and see how it all pans out, change something that you can effect like recycling more or something:-)

Graham62

Divine Sherlock

When we had Martinez in goal we were, defensively, a much better unit..
Leno came back in, we were poor again.
Ramsdale brought in, we improved again.

For me it’s the speed of it all. When we do play at a higher tempo, which isn’t that often, we are far more effective.

Graham62

Saliba, Guendouzi.

Let’s say the bigger clubs want them.
Do we think they would want to be an Arsenal player with Field Marshal Montgomery in charge?
I also worry for our star players like Saka, ESR, Martinelli.

Terraloon

There’s no doubt that it was highly amusing seeing Man U go out on penalties but let’s be honest they should have been way out of sight even by half time. My guess is had Cavani been playing he is just too good at finishing not to have taken advantage of at least one of those many chances. What was interesting is how fresh they looked up till half time but in the second half they seemed to be treading water. I am far from convinced that they have turned the corner but and a big but they have so… Read more »

Graham62

I’m still scanning the obituaries to see who Aubameyang actually murdered.

Graham62

Creating a different culture and higher standards is great, as long as it’s applied fairly and as long as the players buy into the “process” and manager.

They’ve also got to see and feel the benefits and enjoy the “process”

Leadership and a winning mentality has to be spot on.

Those of you that see and feel this with Arteta are blind.

The Bard

Caligooner spot on mate. That why talk of the long term project is PR bs to keep the fan base quiet. If one of the bigger clubs come in they are gone. We struggled to hold onto players when Wenger was boss and we were top 4. It’s about the money and the Kroenkes don’t want to invest the sums needed to make the jump. I dont have problem with it but they need to be honest.

NORG

G62
Villa wanted ESR before the season started, Klopp admires Martinelli and repeats the statement and Pep would love to have Saka.
All three would command a good fee but I believe ESR will eventually be the big fish.
Saka’s agent is on his case – there could be trouble ahead.

Tee

“0 goals for in 4 games, is that not a Pedro stat, but hey at least we are young. Bottom line can we score goals, if not 8th is the new 4th.” Gibberish. 0 goals in 4 games is now the metric to propagate their agenda. Is anything a given in this league other than man city the runaway league winner this season? How is 8 the new 4? We are 2 points off 4th with a match in hand – that’s the reality of where we are not your 8 is now the new 4 take. We would struggle… Read more »

Terraloon

Norg All three would command a good fee but I believe ESR will eventually be the big fish. It’s really odd that ESR signed the length of contract he did for the relatively small wage. From an Arsenal perspective it seems great but what on earth is he and or his agent thinking of from the players point of view. I sort of alluded to it yesterday but the contract situation in respect of the younger guns is all over the place and that really is a priority because players will become unsettled and will obviously look at what others… Read more »

Tee

“Those of you that see and feel this with Arteta are blind.”

Blind? Like you were before the season started or after our first three matches?

Lol blind man calling people blind.

No amount of your doom and gloom to slate Arteta would change the fact he is here to stay until the kroenkes say otherwise. Your nightmare just began and could last as long as Arteta’s contract

Terraloon

Tee How is 8 the new 4? We are 2 points off 4th with a match in hand – that’s the reality of where we are not your 8 is now the new 4 take. Come next Thursday it’s just as likely Arsenal will be in 8th and some 5 points off 4th. Things are far too close to realistically to crow no matter what side of the debate you sit. Arsenals game in hand is Spurs away with games against Chelsea away and Liverpool at home . None of those will be a cakewalk. For me the Wolves game… Read more »

Tee

“It’s really odd that ESR signed the length of contract he did for the relatively small wage. From an Arsenal perspective it seems great but what on earth is he and or his agent thinking of from the players point of view.”

You sounded pained.

Anyways, irrespective of his long contract be test assured his contract will he reviewed along the line and he will be paid what he deserves

alexanderhenry

Pedro Predicting Arsenal’s future success almost exclusively on the assumption that our youth players will become ‘elite’ seems a little naive. Also, pointing out that our team has a younger average age than city’s or Liverpool’s is kind of irrelevant. It’s not a bad thing but surely the more relevant point to make is that their players are better than ours at the moment. After all, as I’ve been saying of late- we’ve been here before.: Project youth land. Still, there is something particualarly satsfying about watching home grown talent coming through so I hope you’re right of course and… Read more »

Tee

“Arsenals game in hand is Spurs away with games against Chelsea away and Liverpool at home . None of those will be a cakewalk.For me the Wolves game will be telling so as they say one game at a time.”

It is still a game in hand. Isn’t it?

Besides, enough of making it seems like we are the only team to play all these teams you mentioned. They will also play against each other. You gain some you loose some. This is where consistency comes in

Graham62

Look, I know my perceptions of Arteta are negative and persistent but they are my opinions and that’s why I keep coming back on here. Do I agree with Pedro and his take on things, no I don’t but this never ending PR bs and spin really is a pain in the backside. Process, project, culture are standard PR rhetoric. Trying to convince people to by into a product has nothing to do with providing data and all that crap and then having the audacity to highlight because I’m not buying into it, “I am clueless” and “no nothing about… Read more »

Tee

“Right now I’d actually like to see some more experienced players come into the squad, but ones whose experience is an actual positive on the pitch, not a negative like xhaka’s.”

Except the outcome of transfer is not a given. You can’t really say if an established player will hit the ground running.

Xhaka was killing it in the bundesliga (he was even in the team of the season) but turned out to be what we don’t need.

It isn’t straight forward

Bob N16

Graham, not sure if your post can be discussed really but I’ll try!

You’re yourself admit that you’re so entrenched in your view of Arteta that either a reader of Legrove shares your viewpoint and metaphorically nods their heads or they disagree with you and probably feel that any response in defence of Arteta will be met with deaf ears or decide to aggressively respond in a manner that you can find patronising.

Why you choose to repeat your ‘negative and persistent perceptions’ when you know the responses are pretty much set in stone?

alexanderhenry

Tee

The outcome of any transfer isn’t a given.

That’s like saying: ‘the sky is blue’.

However, you can say that signing one or two older, experienced players is more likely to have a certain type of effect on the team, than signing more youth.

Regarding Xhaka, I’m amazed we’ve stuck with him for so long. Pound for pound, one of Arsenal’s worst signings in recent years.

Raulishuss

Alexander

I agree with your point completely. We need to start signing elite experienced players from here on. We can’t keep hoping on potential plus this young players aren’t physically at the top yet like the salahs, mane,sterling,rashford etc.

Chika

If I remember correctly, we scored no goal in our first three games of the season but today, we’re only two points away from 4th. Droughts come and go, nothing really wrong with that as long as we achieve our aim this season.

Karsa

We’ve scored 15 goals in our last 6 Premier League games.

Ishola70

Chika “Droughts come and go, nothing really wrong with that as long as we achieve our aim this season.” There is plenty wrong with droughts going into the last part of the season. This part of the season is where you kick on and there is less room for error and recovery with games receding in comparison to the first three games of the season. That’s if you want to achieve your so-called aims. Otherwise it then just becomes a reliance on others failing. The “first three games of the season” has been quoted on here an awful lot by… Read more »

HerbsArmy

I agree with you, Graham, it’s quite odd that younger people think they can teach the older generation about football, as if they’re somehow reinventing the wheel.
There are quite a few on here that have been watching Arsenal massively under achieve, and football in general, in excess of fifty years.
As you say, Graham, Pedro delivers a first class platform with so many extreme opinions, but there is very little in the way of historical context.

englandsbest

Jamie

It will be Haaland or a goalscorer of equivalent quality.

raptora

Guendouzi with another good game. Marseille was losing by 0-2 by the 12′. He stole the ball in the opponent’s half, then landed a pinpoint pass towards Milik who scored with his second touch. Another assist for the player, once upon a time rated at £45m by transfermarkt, who we’ve practically sold for £9m.

Inspired the comeback victory and one of 3 players with the biggest influence in what could be a top 3 finish and a truck of money from UCL qualification for Marseille.

Ishola70

Guendouzi always showed promise and ability for his age at Arsenal and this taking into account his younger age and lack of experience at the higher levels of football when he first came to the club.

Guendouzi has been ostracised not because of his lack of ability but because he is a bit of a loose canon on occasions.

Those that said he wasn’t a good promising player when at Arsenal are either lying to themselves to make them feel better about his departure or failing that they just can’t read and recognise player ability and potential.

Chika

Ishola

If we finished 4th at end of the season, would you ignore that to keep moaning about this drought?

Ishola70

Chika
“If we finished 4th at end of the season, would you ignore that to keep moaning about this drought?”

I’m not really moaning about this drought at this particular time.

More simply pointing out that in the run-in to the season which we are fast approaching droughts can be more damaging to a team in comparison to the “first three games of the season”

englandsbest

Looking back we should be impressed that the Club did not shell out huge amounts of money in Jan. And that it got rid of numerous unwanted. And that it placed players like Balogan in smaller clubs where they would get games and experience. Tthere’s no shortage of money – that’s clear – provided it’s VALUE for money. I’m pretty sure Josh and Mikel concurred in their recent chat. Can we get get by till summer? they must have asked each other – and agreed that they ciould. The question is : what did they mean by ‘get by’? Top… Read more »

Chika

Ishola

Admittedly, they can be damaging, but there’s really nothing much we can do about it right now. We have to hope that our attackers start to convert the scoring opportunities we create. In the summer we can sign the right players when we’d have a larger pool to choose from.

Nelson

“Except the outcome of transfer is not a given. You can’t really say if an established player will hit the ground running. ”
______________________________________________________________________________
I thought that’s what the scouts are for. You can minimize the risk when signing experienced players. For example, Yves Bissouma or Rúben Neves. They are EPL ready and have no history of brain dead.

Muppetman

Raps Guen is going for 9 million. We all know you don’t have to mention it every other day.

DivineSherlock

What I wanted to say earlier is that we have spent the most in defense , consequently we have improved more in defense . . 50million for Ben White , 16million for Tomiyasu , 8million for Tavares and Ramsdale for 25million. Not to mention Gabriel for 22million and Tierney for 24million and Pablo Mari + Cedric . . Thats close to 150million spent on defense for Arsenal . The expectation should definitely be that Arsenal improve in defense ! 75million he wouldnt have had to spend if he had convinced Martinez and Saliba to play for us . The same… Read more »

Karsa

Neves and Calvert Lewin in the summer would be good for the experience factor.

Bissouma would depend on potential police charges. Has there been any updates on this?

curse

thanks Pedro for your comment yesterday

Gonsterous

Watching some highlights of guen. It seems the French league is piss poor because he still seems very casual with the ball. You need to protect the ball better in the PL or risk getting punished by the opposition.

Raulishuss

We’re the team with the Highest goal diff, top scorers(along with man c), best defense in the last six games but it’s all doom and gloom i guess.

Chris

I think we have to try Martinelli through the middle.

Aside from a couple of glaring misses, he has shown to be a composed and excellent finisher.

I am just not convinced we will score the required goals with Lacazette up top, and my gut says Nketiah’s won’t give us what we need either.

So for me Martinelli is the best option up front, his position on the wing/out wide can be covered by other options.

curse

samesong, it’s not an either or, we all want forth but I’m not looking at fifth or sixth as failure. europa will be like a rights of passage for this squads journey. A decent level of competition that will have the likes of Amari, Azeez, Patino get more game time. A champions league test run. Mikel isn’t the best at rotation, it’ll be good practice managing Europe without the pressure that would come with CL. But of course it would be very nice to skip a stage in this project by getting 4th, the type of legend Auba was looking… Read more »

Raulishuss

3 games is not a lot ishola but you were on here raising hell and throwing tantrums. Now you want to make sense of it because it suits your agenda.

Chris

There was a good article about Sevilla on the BBC the other day, detailing their growth as a club on the pitch and off. Would certainly be good to see some sustained competition to Madrids and Barcelona. Sevilla already has such a powerful European pedigree having won 5 Europa Cup titles. It’s a great basis to build up to being a domestic force and grow into a constant presence with the big clubs. If we land EL football next season I hope we take it as seriously as we can. Obviously win it and we get what we are striving… Read more »

Raulishuss

Raptora is always taking about ex arsenal players or coach. Guy even went as far as comparing om to liverpool(OMFG) Just to justify his guen obssesion. Fyi rap we don’t need daily updates about guen or emery and you’re boring af. Literally a bamford clown this one.

Graham62

Bob N16

After all this time, you still act as the arbitrator.

Take it, or leave it, it’s your choice.

Raulishuss

Some want us to beg players to stay and still expect us to dine with the big boys.

Chika

Ishola

“3 games is not a lot ishola but you were on here raising hell and throwing tantrums. Now you want to make sense of it because it suits your agenda.”

Haha I noticed that too.

Chika

*Raulishuss