Draws can only take you so far in football and if you were to draw every single game of the season you’d probably finish 18th and still go down. But they seemed to have saved Arsenal in this one.
Arsenal have drawn a huge number of games this season, it has been 13 so far. Only Wolves come close with 11. If we take 13 points away from the club they would be left with 18 points and would be 19th based on goal difference and a huge 7 points from safety with 13 games remaining. This is a shocking statement to make about Arsenal who are surely one of the great clubs of English football and certainly one of the most successful. But this season has been a gigantic step backwards for the club, who, in truth, have been going backwards for some time.
Of course the other argument of the Gunners drawing games is that those could have been wins and if they were the club would now be on 57 point and be 2nd in the table. But let’s not fool ourselves and this is meant with all due respect to a great club but Arsenal have mostly looked like losing the games they drew this season and there has been countless times when the club have been leading a game only to be over run in the second half and outplayed and then getting pegged back. In no way shape or form are Arsenal better than the 31 points they have so far this season.
The club have won just 6 games this season, an amount they had reached by the end of September when they went the season unbeaten in 2003/04 and those six games represent a return of a 24% win rate. Even if we leave out Liverpool who are having an amazing season and look at Manchester City in 2nd, City have a win rate by comparison of 64%. Chelsea in 4th have managed 48%, and even West Ham in 18th have the same win rate as the Gunners.
Arsenal are also on target though presumably not on purpose to achieve the most draws in a Premier League season. Currently it is held by 3 clubs: Newcastle, Aston Villa and Sunderland who have 17 draws in a 38 game season. Arsenal just need 4 more to equal that record.
Points wise if Arsenal continue like they have they will be very lucky to reach 50 points which would be one of their worst seasons in a generation. Can Mikel Arteta turn the clubs fortunes around? On the evidence we have seen in the 6 weeks he has been at the club he could but it looks to be a very long road ahead for Arsenal.
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