Manchester City 1 – 1 Arsenal: All the stats

Arsenal survived a late first half strike from Joleon Lescott to draw Manchester City 1:1 away.  Laurent Koscielny’s score in the 82nd minute was enough to secure a share of the spoils for the Gunners.

In past articles we’ve noted that possession as primary statistic is wonderful if your team actually does something with that possession.   In past seasons, Arsenal have been profligate with their possession advantage at times.  This season, despite not having dominance in possession regularly, the Gunners have made the most of their possession.  In this match, Arsenal actually dominated possession, 59%-41% away to the defending Premier League Champions.

What did they do with their advantage?

Arsenal attempted 204 more passes than City during the game (638-434).  More importantly, they completed 88% vs. City’s 79%.  If you’re going to attempt that many fewer passes than your opponent, you need to make them count, and the Citizens didn’t do that.  In fact, Arsenal intercepted 25 passes to City’s 16, despite having 204 fewer opportunities to do so.

Mikel Arteta, as usual, led the Gunners with 106 passes, of which he completed an amazing 100 (94%).  Interestingly, Kieran Gibbs also completed 94% of his passes (63 of 67).  It should come as no surprise that Yaya Touré led City with 63 passes attempted and 87% completed (minimum 3 passes attempted).  Think about this, though.  Arsenal’s top passer attempted 43 passes more than City’s – and actually completed 7% more.

In addition, in the attacking half, Arsenal completed 82% of their passes to City’s 66%.  This accuracy was similar in the final third, where Arsenal completed 80% of their passes to City’s 64%.  And yet City outshot Arsenal, 15-10 (9-5 inside the box and 6-5 outside).

Arsenal’s Arteta (119) and Aaron Ramsey (107) had the most touches for the Gunners, whereas Vincent Kompany and Gael Clichy with 78 each led Manchester City.  What does it say when one team’s midfielders lead the team in touches and the other team’s back line leads their team in touches?  How about when the first team has 868 touches to the other’s 637?

More alarmingly for City, David Silva, who supplied the assist on their goal, lost possession 21 times, leading them in that category.  Aaron Ramsey led the Gunners with 21 lost possessions as well.

As a final secondary statistic, both teams won 50% of the aerial 50/50 duels, whereas City actually won 54% of the ground 50/50 duels.

In summary, unlike previous matches, it was Arsenal’s failure to win the 50/50 balls that was most directly responsible for them failing to capitalize on tremendous dominance in possession and passing accuracy.  In fact, given that Vito Mannone took the long way to City’s 40th minute corner and paid for it when he got none of the ball and Joleon Lescott scored….

This was two points dropped by Arsenal, not by Manchester City.

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  1. […] of Robin van Persie and Alex Song. On Sunday the Gunners became only the second side …Manchester City 1 – 1 Arsenal: All the statsFull-Time WhistleArsenal Top The Winners Section…Football365.comEPL: Arsenal start to […]

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