Man Utd v Arsenal: Stat attack

  • By: Ben Coley
  • Last Updated: November 2 2012, 8:22 GMT

Our Ben Coley looks at the stats to highlight some key pointers ahead of Saturday's Premier League game at Old Trafford.

The stats suggest we shouldn't expect a repeat

HEAD-TO-HEAD

Last year's 8-2 victory was United's third consecutive win in this fixture, one they've lost once (2006) in the last decade.

United have won six of the last seven meetings of the sides in all competitions, with Arsenal's sole win in that period coming at the Emirates Stadium, their only victory in the 10 encounters.

Historically, United edge the overall picture. These sides have met a total of 214 times, with United winning 90, Arsenal 78 and 46 draws.

GOALS

In the last 30 meetings of the sides, both teams have scored on 14 occasions. The average number of total goals in this period is exactly 2.5, with United responsible for 49 and Arsenal just 26 - indeed, United have kept 13 clean sheets during this period.

United have played 14 games so far this season, with a total of 55 goals (regular time) in those matches - an average of 3.93 per game.

Their last nine games have all seen more than two goals scored, while both sides have found the net in six of their nine Premier League games and 10 from 14 overall.

Arsenal have also played 14 times, with a total of 44 goals (regular time) at an average of 3.14 per game, but that falls to exactly 2 if you remove two 6-1 victories and Tuesday's win at Reading from calculations.

Both teams have scored in eight of the Gunners' 14 games overall, and four of their nine in the Premier League, but three of their last four have seen just one team score.

SCORERS

Seven different players have scored for United against Arsenal over the course of the last two seasons, while none has been more prolific than Wayne Rooney who has six in his last seven appearances against the Gunners.

None of the current Arsenal squad has scored in more than one game against United, with Andrei Arshavin, Aaron Ramsey, Thomas Vermaelen and Theo Walcott those to have found the net.

Thirteen members of the United squad have scored in the league this season, none more prolific than Robin van Persie. The former Gunner has seven goals in nine appearances, and has found the net in each of his last two Premier League games.

Just seven members of the Arsenal squad have found the net in the league, with much-maligned Gervinho their top scorer with three. He has found the net in four of his 11 appearances in all competitions but will miss Saturday's game through injury.

HALF-TIME/FULL-TIME

United have lost twice (regular time) this season, and on neither occasion were they in front at half-time, nor indeed at any point during the game.

Only six times in 14 games across all competitions have they taken a lead into the break, and they've gone on to win on five occasions, with their sole failure to do so coming on Wednesday at Chelsea.

Arsenal's first four wins this season saw them lead at the break, but their last three have seen them go in level. They haven't won from behind in regular time.

They've only actually gone in behind twice in the league, salvaging a point against Manchester City and losing at Norwich.

GOAL TIMES

United have scored 24 goals in the Premier League this season, with 10 of them coming in the first half and 14 in the second. They've conceded first seven times in 14 games in all competitions.

Arsenal have scored 14 goals in the Premier League this season, with seven in the first half and seven in the second. They've conceded first in seven of their 14 games in all competitions.

BOOKINGS

United's Premier League games now average exactly three yellow cards per match (counting Fernando Torres' two on Sunday), and there have been three red cards issued, all to the opposition.

Arsenal's games average 2.67 yellow cards and there has been one sending off, a red card issued to QPR's Stephane Mbia in their last match.

The last six meetings of these sides in the league have seen 32 yellow cards and a resultant red, an an average of over 5.3 cards per game.

CORNERS

United's Premier League games have provided 110 corners at an average of over 12, with United responsible for exactly half of them.

Arsenal's games average just over 11.5, with Arsenal responsible for 69 of them. Twice this season they've not conceded a single corner kick in a game, and only twice have they had fewer corners than their opponents.

SUMMARY

Everything points to a United victory here. Not only have they won six of the last seven meetings of the sides, but they're clearly in much better form.

Given the prices, it's interesting to note that more often than not only one of these teams finds the net. When we consider that Gervinho is Arsenal's top goalscorer and he is absent, markets such as United to win to nil and only one team to score are worth looking at.

For those searching for a more obscure angle, you have to go back to 2006 for the last time United won more than six corners against Arsenal.

Given that Arsenal have had more corners than their opponents in seven of nine Premier League games and average over 66 per cent of the total yield, this is one battle they may be able to win in a game they're likely to lose.