Previous names: Dial Square, Royal Arsenal, Woolwich Arsenal

Sunday, May 26, 2024

Is this the midfielder this Arsenal team needs to shake off one glaring weakness next season? 

 By Danong

Arsenal had an impressive 2023–24 season, finishing second in the Premier League with 89 points, just 2 points behind the league champions, Manchester City. Almost every stat this Arsenal team set was impressive; in fact, they broke record after record.

They set a club record-breaking 28 wins in a 38-game league campaign. They set a club record goal difference of +62, conceding the fewest goals (29) in 20 years. They also equaled the record for most goals from corners (16). 

Most of Arsenal's records were quite heartwarming, but there is one surprising statistic that has emerged, indicating the need for improvement in the upcoming season.

Arsenal scored a whopping 91 goals, but it's a bit of a letdown that only six of them were from outside the penalty area. The Gunners could use some more firepower from a distance. 

This discovery has exposed Arsenal's heavy reliance on close-range finishes and their limited ability to make impactful shots from a distance. 

While some Gooners may not view this stat as significant, given the continued success in scoring goals, it should be, as Arsenal strives for excellence in all areas. The fact that Manchester City scored 15 goals from outside the penalty area only highlights this weakness.

Being able to find the target from a distance and score from a long range, if not setting up the forwards for tap-ins, could have been really useful for the Gunners. 

It would have been handy in the first half of the season, especially considering the losses they experienced due to them struggling in front of goal. During the first half of the season, the team's attack lacked bite.

In the matches against Aston Villa (1-0 loss in December) and Newcastle (1-0 loss in November), having the option of long-range shots could have been useful. If Arsenal had won either of these matches, or even if they had ended in draws, they would have become the league champions. 

Arsenal appear to have mastered scoring from set pieces, and scoring from long range could be the key to their success next season.

With the transfer window upon us, Arsenal is looking to strengthen their midfield in addition to their attack. Maybe the Arsenal scouts should think about bringing in a top midfielder who has an eye for a shot. 

Even though he might be a bit expensive, Douglas Luiz is that player. The Brazilian definitely brings a much-needed long-range threat to a team. 

His shot-power rating in the FC 24 game was 83. In the 2023–24 Premier League season, Douglas Luiz, though a deep-lying midfielder, proved to be a consistent threat in front of goal. 

With 28 shots taken in 34 matches, he has shown his willingness to pull the trigger when the opportunity arises. His shooting accuracy of 60.71% is an impressive stat, with 17 of his shots finding the target. This accuracy has resulted in a goal for every 3.11 shots he takes, showcasing his efficiency in front of goal.

On average, he takes 0.87 shots per 90 minutes, highlighting his active involvement in the attacking phase of the game. 

Douglas Luiz's shooting stats speak volumes about his proficiency in front of goal and his ability to make a significant impact for his team.

We'll have to wait and see what happens this summer—if Luiz, who can't stop being linked with a move to the Emirates since Arsenal had three bids rejected for him, is finally captured.

Ultimately, Arsenal must step up their game in terms of scoring from distance. It could provide them with the extra boost they need to outwit Manchester City for the league title.

Sunday, May 19, 2024

Timber the answer to Arsenal's summer transfer straregy

By 1970s Gooner

Jurrien Timber had a most impressive 25 minutes against Everton at the Emirates today, the last game of the campaign. It was his second appearance since he suffered that horrible injury in the season's opener.

But he was immense. Strong and determined he inverted towards the midfield as if he was playing all season there.

He will most definitely be Arteta's first choice left back for next season. No doubt about it. 

And in addition to saving all that money to buy a left back Arteta won't have to go for an additional centre back to cover for the fabulous duo of Gabriel and Saliba. Timber remember is a centre back as well as a full back. 

Tomi will be a cover for all positions at the back and the same goes for Timber! This is in addition to Quior and Zinchenko providing additional cover.

The transfer strategy and the financial resources will therefore switch towards getting another centre forward and a central midfielder if Partey goes.

The center forward will be selected to have the versatility to also play on the wing.

Add to all the above the large room for improvement that is within this young squad and the experience gained in the last two seasons.

It's a sure recipe for surpassing City and lifting the premier league trophy next May. 

On the Brink of Glory: Arsenal’s Progressive March Under Mikel Arteta

By Danong

Mikel Arteta has done an impressive job at the Emirates Stadium. Take a look at this trend:

2019-2020: 56 points and finished 8th
2020-2021: 61 points, finished 8th
2021-2022: 69 points, finished 5th
2022-2023: 84 points, finished 2nd
2023-24: ??

It is apparent that Arsenal under Mikel are on the rise; each season they improve. Since the Spaniard took over halfway through the 2019–20 season, Arsenal's points have increased significantly each season in an upward trend. 

Compared to the past seasons prior to the Arteta era, the Gunners have never remained still or exhibited signs of deterioration.

The 2023–24 season concludes today. An Arsenal victory over Everton will see the Gunners finish with a maximum of 89 points. Unfortunately, these points may not help them win the title (though they may win if Manchester City, who have 88 points, drop points against West Ham on Sunday).

Even so, reaching 89 points is commendable given Arsenal's growing momentum, but it is insufficient to meet coach Mikel Arteta's target of 90 points if his side is to win the Premier League.

"The demands, you might have to win every game. I don’t know. I have no clue. There are a lot of games and we are all going to have crazy schedules and this league might be different to last season," said Arteta back in March of the title race as quoted by 90MIN.

"Anything under 90 points I think would be very difficult."

Anyway, given the trend, there's every reason to expect Arsenal to gather more points next season than they did this season. So, if not this season, Arsenal will return with an even better version next season, aiming to win the Premier League title with 90 or more points. 

Whatever happens on Sunday, whether Arsenal win the league or not, the most beautiful days for the Gooners are ahead.