This week our statistician looks at Arsenal's half century of games this season.
Arsenal played their 50th game of the season at the weekend and have won 26 (52 per cent), drawn 12 (24 per cent) and lost 12 of them.
The Gunners have scored 99 goals in those 50 matches and conceded 59. Thirty-five (70 per cent) of the games have been in the league, eight in the Champions League, four in the FA Cup and three in the Capital One Cup.
"Arsenal have used 35 different players in the 50 games, with Olivier Giroud and Santi Cazorla appearing the most times"
With two lots of extra-time included in that list, it means the team have played 76 hours of football, scoring once every 46 minutes overall. They found the net at least once in 41 (82 per cent) of the matches.
Arsenal have used 35 different players in the 50 games, with Olivier Giroud and Santi Cazorla appearing the most times. They have both played in 46 (92 per cent) of the games in their debut seasons in English football.
No player has featured in more than 92 per cent of games in an entire season for Arsenal since Kolo Toure in the 2003/04 campaign (93.2 per cent).
Cazorla is the only player to feature in all 35 Premier League games so far, while 18 players appeared in all four competitions, with Giroud and Theo Walcott scoring in all four. Twelve players played in five games or fewer.
Exactly half of the 50 games have been at Emirates Stadium, though there hasn't been a great difference between the home and away playing records, with a 56 per cent win rate at Emirates - compared to 48 per cent away - and the 12 defeats being split evenly home and away.
Arsenal are currently on an eight-game unbeaten run, which is the longest undefeated streak of the 50 games so far. The longest winning sequence was five consecutive victories - between March 13 and April 13.
Results, competition by competition
|Capital One Cup||3||2||0||1||14||7|
This is the 16th season in a row that Arsenal have played at least half a century of matches.
However, with three games remaining, Arsenal will play a total of 53 games in 2012/13, which is the Club's lowest total during the Champions League era (1998/99 onwards).
Arsène Wenger took over during 1996/97 (when Arsenal played 46 games), and the average number of games per full season since then is 57.7.
"This is the 16th season in a row that Arsenal have played at least half a century of matches"
This is the 41st season (out of 109 in total) that Arsenal have reached a half century of games - the first instance was 1929/30 when the Gunners won the FA Cup for the first time.
Although the number of league games has been reduced (it was usually 42 games per season for much of the 20th century), the introduction of European competition in 1963/64, the League Cup in 1966/67 and the Champions League in 1998/99 has led to a gradual increase in the number of games per season over the years.
During the pre-war period, Arsenal played an average of 41.9 games per season, compared to 52 per season on average since 1946/47. Throughout Gunners history the overall number of games per season averages out at 48.1.
The limit on replays in cup competitions nowadays means that there isn't too much deviation between particularly busy and quiet seasons. In the past 16 years there hasn't been more than six games difference from one campaign to the next.
This season the minimum number of games the Gunners could have played was 46, while the maximum would have been 69 (had Arsenal finished third in the Champions League group stage and dropped into the Europa League, and all domestic cup games gone to replays).
So although Arsenal generally play more games per season in the modern era, the current season's tally is some way short of the Club's record - that stands at 70 matches in 1979/80. In fact that's not just a club record, but a record for English football.
That campaign kicked off on August 11, 1979 and finished on May 19, 1980 - meaning Terry Neill's side played once every 4.03 days on average, with Brian Talbot ever-present throughout.
"Brian Talbot started all 70 games, and was only subbed off in two of them. He therefore played more than 102 hours of first-team football that season!"
The total was made up of 42 league matches, 11 in the FA Cup, nine European Cup Winners' Cup games, seven League Cup fixtures and the Charity Shield to kick off the year.
Talbot started all of these games, and was only subbed off in two of them. He therefore played more than 102 hours of first-team football that season!
Of the 70 fixtures Arsenal won 30, lost 11 and drew 29. That season Arsenal reached the final of the Cup Winners' Cup - where they lost to Valencia on a penalty shoot-out - as well the FA Cup final where they suffered a 1-0 defeat to West Ham.
Had their League Cup run been extended beyond a quarter-final replay defeat by Swindon Town, then Arsenal could have played another three matches.
The Gunners played 10 games in the month of April alone that season.
Second on the list for most games is the first Double-winning campaign of 1970/71, when Bertie Mee's side played 64 times. What's more, Arsenal used just 16 players in the whole of that campaign.
The last time Arsenal played the bare minimum number of games was 1965/66, when they played 42 league games and just one in the FA Cup – a third-round defeat at Blackburn.
All stats correct as at April 30, 2013
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