This week our statistician Josh James looks at Arsenal's history of scoring late winners in the Premier League.
Saturday's match against Aston Villa was the first time this season Arsenal had clinched victory in the final five minutes of a Premier League game, and the 35th time in all since the league started in 1992/93.
So, on average, Arsenal win fewer than two games per season in the last five minutes of play, but since the start of 2010 Arsenal have managed it 11 times - earning an extra 22 points in the process.
"This weekend was the fourth time in Premier League history that Arsenal had beaten Aston Villa in the last five minutes"
Last season Arsenal turned one point into three in the final five minutes on no fewer than six occasions - more than any previous Premier League campaign.
That accounted for more than a quarter (28.6 per cent) of the team's league wins in 2011/12. Overall in the Premier League, roughly one in every 12 (8.2 per cent) of the Gunners' 428 wins were secured in the final five minutes of play.
Saturday's late victory was the first since April of last year, when Mikel Arteta scored after 87 minutes to defeat Manchester City at Emirates Stadium.
The last three late winners have all come at Emirates Stadium though, perhaps surprisingly, prior to that there was exactly a 50:50 split between late home wins and late away wins (16 each).
Arsenal's winners in last five minutes of Premier League games
|Oct 3, 1992||Chelsea||2-1||H||85||Ian Wright|
|Apr 10, 1993||Ipswich Town||2-1||A||87||Paul Merson|
|Aug 16, 1993||Tottenham Hotspur||1-0||A||87||Ian Wright|
|Dec 12, 1993||Sheffield Wed.||1-0||H||90||Ian Wright|
|Apr 23, 1994||Aston Villa||2-1||A||90||Ian Wright|
|Sept 10, 1995||Manchester City||1-0||A||90||Ian Wright|
|Apr 6, 1996||Leeds United||2-1||H||90||Ian Wright|
|Nov 24, 1996||Tottenham Hotspur||3-1||H||88||Tony Adams*|
|Sept 21, 1997||Chelsea||3-2||A||89||Nigel Winterburn|
|Aug 7, 1999||Leicester City||2-1||H||90||Frank Sinclair (og)|
|Sept 25, 1999||Watford||1-0||H||86||Kanu|
|Oct 23, 1999||Chelsea||3-2||A||90||Kanu|
|May 2, 2000||West Ham United||2-1||H||90||Emmanuel Petit|
|Dec 2, 2000||Southampton||1-0||H||85||Patrick Vieira|
|Dec 9, 2001||Aston Villa||3-2||H||90||Thierry Henry|
|Apr 6, 2002||Tottenham Hotspur||2-1||H||86||Lauren|
|Sept 21, 2002||Bolton Wanderers||2-1||H||90||Kanu|
|Dec 26, 2002||W.B.A.||2-1||A||85||Thierry Henry|
|Feb 1, 2003||Fulham||2-1||H||90||Robert Pires|
|Sept 17, 2006||Manchester United||1-0||A||85||Emmanuel Adebayor|
|Dec 13, 2006||Wigan Athletic||1-0||A||88||Emmanuel Adebayor|
|Jan 21, 2007||Manchester United||2-1||H||90||Thierry Henry|
|Aug 12, 2007||Fulham||2-1||H||90||Alex Hleb|
|Mar 29, 2008||Bolton Wanderers||3-2||A||90||Jlloyd Samuel (og)|
|Feb 27, 2010||Stoke City||3-1||A||90||Cesc Fabregas*|
|Mar 13, 2010||Hull City||2-1||A||90||Nicklas Bendtner|
|Apr 3, 2010||Wolves||1-0||H||90||Nicklas Bendtner|
|Oct 30, 2010||West Ham United||1-0||H||88||Alex Song|
|Oct 29, 2011||Chelsea||5-3||A||85||Robin van Persie*|
|Dec 21, 2011||Aston Villa||2-1||A||87||Yossi Benayoun|
|Feb 11, 2012||Sunderland||2-1||A||90||Thierry Henry|
|Mar 3, 2012||Liverpool||2-1||A||90||Robin van Persie|
|Mar 12, 2012||Newcastle United||2-1||H||90||Thomas Vermaelen|
|Apr 8, 2012||Manchester City||1-0||H||87||Mikel Arteta|
|Feb 23, 2013||Aston Villa||2-1||H||85||Santi Cazorla|
* Scorer to put Arsenal ahead
Only two teams have claimed more late winners in Premier League history than the Gunners - Chelsea (39) and Liverpool (47).
However, this can be partly explained by the fact that Arsenal have won more Premier League games than any side apart from Manchester United. So looking at late wins as a proportion of overall victories is more revealing.
Where late winners were scored
Arsenal are ranked 27th in this chart, with 8.2 per cent of their wins coming in the final five minutes of games. This average has crept up in the last few years - between 2003/04 and 2005/06 the Gunners went three consecutive seasons without winning any games in the last five minutes.
Manchester United are ranked even lower, in 36th place, with just 6.7 per cent of their wins being secured late on.
In fact the stats show that, historically, the league's more successful teams do not depend upon late winners as much as the sides in the rest of the division do.
The team with the highest ratio of late wins in Premier League history is Hull City (21.4 per cent), though as they have only won 14 games in all, those stats may be skewed.
So, only including sides that have 50 or more Premier League wins to their name, Stoke City (16.7 per cent), Wigan Athletic (15.9 per cent) and Bolton Wanderers (15.4 per cent) are the three teams with the highest proportion of late wins.
As for being on the receiving end of late winners, this weekend was the fourth time in Premier League history that Arsenal had beaten Aston Villa in the last five minutes - the joint-highest number of times the Gunners have seen off a specific opponent with late strikes.
The other team Arsenal have beaten four times in the final throes is Chelsea; three of those wins were at Stamford Bridge.
This weekend's opponents Tottenham have been on the receiving end of a late Arsenal winner three times in Premier League history, but not since 2002.
Not including own goals, 20 different players have come up with these crucial late goals for Arsenal, with Ian Wright proving the king of the last-ditch winner. He scored six late winners in all, including four in the last minute of games.
Those four are among 19 last-minute or injury-time goals Arsenal have scored in the Premier League. The most recent example is Thomas Vermaelen's dramatic clincher at home to Newcastle United back in March.
Thierry Henry is second on the list, with four late winners. They include his last ever goal for the Club - the 90th-minute strike to beat Sunderland last February.
Incidentally, where two goals were scored in the last five minutes (v Tottenham in 1996, Stoke in 2010 and Chelsea in 2011) the scorer who put the Gunners in the lead, rather than the player who scored the 'bonus' goal, is included here.
Stats correct as at February 26, 2013. With thanks to Opta.
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