Saturday 3 December 2016

Knock on wood: Arsenal would be champions if shots against the woodwork went in

Published 20/05/2016 | 12:41

Arsenal's Alexis Sanchez hit the woodwork five times in the 2015-16 Premier League season
Arsenal's Alexis Sanchez hit the woodwork five times in the 2015-16 Premier League season

Arsenal would have won the Premier League title if every one of their shots which hit the woodwork this season had gone in, the Premier League has revealed.

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The Gunners hit the frame of the goal 21 times in their 38 matches, two more than any other side, and topped a revised table published on the Premier League website based on every shot which hit the woodwork going in, above Manchester City and West Ham on goal difference with 70 points.

Actual champions Leicester were down in fourth on the revised table, with four more defeats and 12 fewer points than they ultimately recorded.

If the woodwork table was used, Manchester City would have secured an automatic place in the Champions League group phase rather than facing a qualifier, and West Ham, who hit the woodwork 19 times, would be joining them in time for their move to the Olympic Stadium.

Instead, the Hammers are reliant on Manchester United winning the FA Cup final on Saturday just to claim a place in the Europa League.

Tottenham would have scored 19 more goals but would have conceded the same number and were eighth on the 'woodwork' table and out of the European places.

The table showed no significant changes at the bottom, with Aston Villa, Norwich and Newcastle still occupying the bottom three spots.

Tottenham forward Harry Kane and Everton striker Romelu Lukaku were the unluckiest players - each hitting the woodwork seven times during the season.

Leicester's Jamie Vardy also struck the frame of the goal on six occasions.

:: How the revised table looked:

1st Arsenal 70 points (+36 goal difference)

2nd Man City 70 (+33)

3rd West Ham 70 (+23)

4th Leicester 69

5th Liverpool 67

6th Southampton 66

7th Man Utd 64

8th Tottenham 62

9th Everton 60

10th Swansea 51

11th Watford 48

12th Crystal Palace 47

13th Chelsea 46 (+4)

14th Stoke 46 (-24)

15th Sunderland 45

16th West Brom 41

17th Bournemouth 40

18th Newcastle 38

19th Norwich 37

20th Aston Villa 13

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