Arsenal Player AnalysiS: Europa League Match Day 3

Following each season of the Premier League, each Arsenal player’s career-to-date performances are analysed and ranked against their internal competition.


In assessing the on-field production and the comparative ranking of each player which comprise Arsenal’s senior squad, each player is allocated into six positional categories (with some players allocated to multiple positional categories due to their perceived versatility).

Those positional categories consist of:

  • Goalkeeper
  • Defenders
  • Central Midfielders
  • Wide Midfielders
  • Forwards

Once categorised, each player’s output in defined key performance indicators (KPIs) for their respective positional category has then been considered, using data sourced from

To provide a realistic picture of each individual player’s on-field production, only data from those seasons, throughout the player’s professional career, where the player has started at least 15 league games in at least two seasons (consecutive or non-consecutive) was considered. Where a player has not met that criteria, their productivity data was not assessed.

Different weightings were then assigned to the KPI data considered for each positional group based on the assumption that Arsenal adopt a 3-5-2 formation and the cornerstones of Arsenal’s tactical approach is as follows:

  • Defend in a low block.
  • Attack through their central and wide-midfielders quickly transitioning the ball forward after recovering it, by dribbling it up the field and playing through passes and cut backs into the centre forwards as they attack the channels between the oppositions fullbacks and centre backs.
  • The goalkeeper’s primary aims are to stop shots and claim crosses.
  • The centre backs’ primary aims are to press and tackle their opponent to recover the ball (2+ per game), and win aerial duels (3+ per game).
  • The central and wide midfielders’ primary aims are to press and tackle their opponent to recover the ball (2+ per game), and contribute to the team’s offensive play by producing multiple dribbles (1+) and key passes (1+) per match.
  • The forward’s primary aims are to contribute to the team’s offensive play in the final third through multiple shots (3+) and multiple dribbles (3+) per match as well as goals (15+ per season)

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

The player rankings by position are as follows:

Formation and line-up

Based on:

  • the above analytical comparison
  • Arsenal’s aforementioned tactical basis and minimum required KPIs
  • Saka, Partey, Willian, Chambers, Elneny, Kolasinac, Mari, and Martinelli recovering from injuries
  • and this being one of the easier fixture of Arsenal’s three between 23 November and 30 November

the 11 players which it is suggested should comprise Arsenal’s starting 11, for their match day 3 Europa League clash versus Molde would appear to be as follows:


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