Arsenal Player Analysis: Round 16 Player Analysis and Round 17 Team Selection
Following each round of the Premier League, each Arsenal player’s season-to-date performance is analysed and ranked against their internal competition.
In assessing the respective players on field production and their comparative internal rankings, each player is allocated into eight positional categories (with some players allocated to multiple positional categories due to their perceived versatility).
Those positional categories consist of:
- right fullback
- centre back
- left fullback
- defensive midfield
- centre midfield
- attacking midfield
Once categorised, each player’s output in defined key performance indicators (KPIs) for their respective positional category is then considered, using data sourced from Whoscored.com.
Different weightings are then assigned to the KPI data considered for each positional group based on the assumption that the cornerstones of Arsenal’s tactical approach is as follows:
- Defensively: press the opponent when they are in their own half, and then when the ball transitions into Arsenal half, establish and maintain compactness by adopting a medium block, position focused pressing game, in which the forwards and midfielders prioritise retention of shape, and only press the ball when it goes out to an opposition fullback or when a centre back pushes forwards.
- Offensively: transition the ball quickly forward on turnovers to create higher probability goal scoring opportunities, and create overloads on the flanks to generate cut back opportunities.
- Arsenal’s goalkeeper’s primary aims are to stop shots and claim crosses.
- Arsenal’s centre backs’ primary aims are to recover the ball from their opponent (tackles and interceptions), win aerial duels, clear the ball from danger and block shots.
- Arsenal’s fullbacks’ primary aims are to recover the ball from their opponent (tackles and interceptions), cross the ball multiple times during a match (with the intent of providing assists), and contribute to the team’s offensive transitional play through multiple forward dribbles per match.
- Arsenal’s defensive midfielders’ primary aims are to recover the ball from their opponent (tackles and interceptions), and contribute to the team’s offensive transitional play through accurate passing, and multiple long range passes per match.
- Arsenal’s central midfielders’ primary aims are to recover the ball from their opponent (tackles and interceptions), contribute to the team’s offensive transitional play through accurate passing, and multiple forward dribbles per match, and contributing to Arsenal’s offensive play by providing multiple key pass and shots per game.
- Arsenal’s attacking midfielders’ primary aims are to provide assists, score goals, create goal scoring opportunities through multiple key passes, multiple through passes, and multiple forward dribbles per match.
- Arsenal’s strikers’ primary aims are to score goals, and record multiple shots and successful aerial duels per match.
The findings of the aforementioned analysis, provide an invaluable insight as to:
- how each player ranks against their internal competition within their positional category; and
- which 11 players make up Arsenal’s most productive team.
Internal player rankings
Following Round 16 of the Premier League, the player rankings are as follows:
Formation and line-up
Based on the above analytical comparison, Arsenal’s aforementioned tactical basis, and with Bellerin, Holding, Tierney, Ceballos, and Xhaka recovering from injuries, the 11 players which comprise Arsenal’s most productive starting 11, for their round 17 clash versus Manchester City, would appear to be as follows: