Sport Soccer

Friday 2 December 2016

Statistical look at this weekend's Premier League action

Published 04/11/2016 | 12:06

Free-scoring Arsenal meet Tottenham's stingy defence this weekend
Free-scoring Arsenal meet Tottenham's stingy defence this weekend

Ahead of a Premier League weekend headlined by the north London derby, Press Association Sport looks at what the statistics can tell us.

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Unbeaten runs on the line

For all the consternation over Tottenham's recent form - captain Hugo Lloris claimed after Wednesday's Champions League loss to Bayer Leverkusen that "we cannot be in a worse situation" - they are the only team who remain unbeaten in this season's Premier League. Opponents and rivals Arsenal have themselves gone nine league games undefeated, though, having not lost since their thrilling opening match against Liverpool. The match could come down to Arsenal's free-scoring attack - they have scored three or more goals in six of their 10 games, and one every 6.5 shots - against a Spurs defence which has soaked up 19.2 shots for every goal against and has yet to concede more than once in a game.

War of attrition

Struggling Swansea - 19th in the table and winless in nine league games, including a league-worst six at home - appear ideal opponents for a Manchester United team languishing in eighth. Much of the focus for United has been on Zlatan Ibrahimovic's goal drought but the team as a whole have not scored in their past three games, the longest such run in the league. With both teams in the Premier League's bottom four in shot conversion, needing nearly 14 shots apiece to find the net, Sunday could be another low-scoring encounter.

Stoke to put the Hammer down

If Jose Mourinho's men being on the longest scoreless streak in the league is surprising, so is Stoke's league-leading scoring run of six. They have also scored more than once in each of their past three games and on Saturday go up against a West Ham side who have conceded at least three goals in four of their 10 games. That is the worst record in the top-flight - in games against Manchester City, Watford, West Brom and Southampton - and two goals on two other occasions. The Hammers have tightened up of late, but with their next four games being away to Spurs, Manchester United and Liverpool, as well as at home to Arsenal, their tendency to leak clumps of goals could again be exposed.

Stoppable force meets moveable object

A struggle for goals has been the story of Burnley's season, failing to score in half of their games and taking only 8.4 shots per match. They have been largely tight in defence, though, conceding no more than once in any of their past 19 home games, and will rarely have a better chance to resolve their problems at the other end than at home to a Crystal Palace side who have not kept a clean sheet in their past 15 Premier League games. That is the worst run in the division by some distance - Sunderland, with 11, are the only other team in double figures.

Foxes fracas

Leicester have been unafraid to put their foot in this season, committing more fouls than their opponents in all but one of their games this season. The only team to have done so in every game? West Brom. Referee Craig Pawson is in for a busy afternoon. West Brom have scored no more than once in any of their past 10 Premier League away games, the worst such run in the league, and appear ill-equipped to end Leicester's league-leading 20-match unbeaten run at home.

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