Stats Zone brings you facts, figures and graphics ahead of every Arsenal game.

The Gunners visit Stoke City this weekend and, as ever, Arsène Wenger's side can expect a tough physical examination by Tony Pulis' team.

The Britannia Stadium has not been an especially happy hunting ground for Arsenal in recent years but they have the passing ability to create chances on Sunday.

Today's Stats Zone focuses on two Spaniards who could make the difference.


Arsenal's new playmaker made a sparkling debut against Sunderland, setting up the best chance of the match for Olivier Giroud and going close himself on three occasions.

Cazorla made 77 passes in his first Arsenal appearance and, as our chalkboard graphic shows, he misplaced just six of them - four in the first half and two after the break.

"I believe a team goes through its strong point and we have seen that straight away with Cazorla," Wenger told Arsenal Player this week. "He is a strong point in our team.”

If the 27-year-old can find time and space at the Britannia Stadium he can cause Stoke serious problems.

(Key: green = successful passes, yellow = key passes, red = unsuccessful passes)

Chalkboard Cazorla Sunderland


Cazorla turned heads on his Arsenal debut and last summer's Spanish recruit was also a stand-out performer against Sunderland.

Mikel Arteta controlled the game from the centre of the pitch, making himself available at all times and initiating Arsenal attacks with short, accurate passes.

The departure of Alex Song saw Arteta deployed in a deeper, more disciplined role and our heatmap graphics demonstrate that.

The first graphic shows Arteta's position against Sunderland this season - with the red areas showing his continual presence in central areas.

The second graphic illiustrates Arteta's position in last season's home game against Sunderland when the Spaniard spent less time in the centre circle and had more licence to roam.

Heatmap Arteta Sunderland 12/13

Heatmap Arteta Sunderland 11/12


  • Since their return to the top flight, there have been five meetings in all competitions between Stoke and Arsenal at the Britannia Stadium with the Potters winning three to the Gunners’ one
  • Peter Crouch has scored seven Premier League goals against Arsenal; only versus Blackburn (eight) has he been more prolific. He has scored in both games for Stoke against the Gunners
  • In 2011/12, Stoke scored the highest percentage of goals from set pieces in the Premier League (58 per cent), while Arsenal scored the lowest percentage from dead ball situations (14 per cent)
  • Six of the nine goals Stoke have scored against Arsenal have come from set pieces
  • Santi Cazorla set up seven scoring chances, more than any other player in the top flight on the opening weekend
  • Stoke have picked up just 20 points in 20 Premier League games in 2012
  • Stoke have scored first in all five games they have played against Arsenal in all competitions at the Britannia Stadium under Tony Pulis, and on four of those occasions inside 11 minutes
  • Stoke are unbeaten in their last seven home matches (W3 D4 L0), but have drawn the last three in a row; the first of those a 1-1 draw with Arsenal
  • Arsenal have won just one of their last six Premier League matches (W1 D4 L1)

All stats provided by Opta

Copyright 2017 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to as the source
24 Aug 2012