In the first of the mini-series analysing Arsenal's top five players of the season, our statistician Josh James reflects on Mikel Arteta's 2011/12 stats.
The stat rolled out towards the end of the campaign - especially by worried Gooners ahead of the last game of the season - was that Arsenal didn't win in the league without Mikel Arteta in the team. Thankfully that changed with the victory over West Brom on May 13, but the summer signing's influence on the team was obvious.
Arteta missed six league games through injury in his debut season (having joined after the opening three matches of the campaign) and Arsenal's record for those fixtures was W1 D4 L4. The record for league games he did play in was W20 D3 L6. In all competitions his personal playing record was P38 W25 D5 L8 for a win percentage of 65.8. By way of comparison, Arsenal's overall win percentage for the season was 57.4.
Arteta got off the mark in just his third game for the Club, the 4-3 defeat at Blackburn, and added five more before May for a total of six. Four (66 per cent) of the goals were at Emirates Stadium and Arsenal won each of the last five games he netted in by an aggregate scoreline of 18-1.
Significantly, three of the goals were scored to put Arsenal ahead in the match (v Blackburn, Wigan and Man City) and the last of those also proved to be the winner. He also scored one direct free kick (v Aston Villa).
He scored home and away against Blackburn, and in fact netted in three league matches last season against Rovers, as he also found the net for Everton against them in his final game for the Toffees, the day before his transfer to Arsenal.
As well as six goals, Arteta contributed three direct assists (against Chelsea, Sunderland and Tottenham) - it was his cross that Bacary Sagna powered home to start the comeback in the home fixture with Spurs.
Arteta made a total of 38 appearances for Arsenal in 2011/12 (all but one from the start) and they are broken down as follows: 29 in the league, six in the Champions League and two in the FA Cup (plus one as a substitute). He was only subbed off in four matches, and even captained the team once - for the 1-0 FA Cup win over Leeds in January. That was one of 20 home fixtures he played in, which was 52.6 per cent of his total.
In total he was on the pitch for 3,212 minutes (53 and a half hours) of the season, which was 72.8 per cent of the total available playing time since he signed on the final day of the transfer window. His longest run of consecutive starts (all competitions) was eight, from January 29 to March 3. He made 17 starts in a row purely in the league from making his debut against Swansea on September 10. He either scored or assisted every 274.8 minutes in Premier League football.
|Champions League||13/09/11||Borussia Dortmund||1-1||D||A||-||-||90|
|Premier League||17/09/11||Blackburn Rovers||3-4||L||A||1||-||90|
|Premier League||05/11/11||West Brom||3-0||W||H||1||-||90|
|Champions League||23/11/11||Borussia Dortmund||2-1||W||H||-||-||90|
|Premier League||18/12/11||Man City||0-1||L||A||-||-||90|
|Premier League||21/12/11||Aston Villa||2-1||W||A||-||-||90|
|FA Cup||29/01/12||Aston Villa||3-2||W||H||-||-||19|
|Champions League||15/02/12||AC Milan||0-4||L||A||-||-||90|
|Premier League||24/03/12||Aston Villa||3-0||W||H||1||-||90|
|Premier League||08/04/12||Man City||1-0||W||H||1||-||90|
Stats correct as at May 28, 2012. Josh James also provides the stats for the Arsenal Analysis pages of the matchday programme. To subscribe, or buy online, click here.Copyright 2013 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source 28 May 2012