Arsenal are just TOO NICE! Mikel Arteta’s side make the FEWEST fouls of any side in Europe’s top five leagues this season… while relegated Fulham prove to be the dirtiest English side with a foul every eight minutes
- Arsenal have committed the fewest fouls of any side in Europe’s top five leagues
- The Gunners are often accused of lacking bite and being too nice to opponents
- And data from CIES shows that no side has committed fewer fouls than Arsenal
- Mikel Arteta’s side commit a foul every 10 minutes and 44 seconds this season
- Fulham have committed more foul than any other Premier League side
Arsenal have long been accused of lacking bite and the statistics back it up, as new data shows that the Gunners have made the least fouls of any team in Europe’s top five leagues this season.
The Spaniard has often attributed his side’s lack of consistency for their poor showing this season, with Arsenal unable to string a run of good results together to propel them out of mid-table obscurity.
However, data from stats whizzes the CIES Observatory outline that Arsenal’s problems may stem from being too nice to their opposition.
The Gunners have committed a meagre 317 fouls, averaging a foul every 10 minutes and 44 seconds – the fewest of any side in the top leagues of England, France, Spain, Germany and Italy.
Barcelona occupy second position for fewest fouls made this season, with Ronald Koeman’s side blowing their lead at the top of LaLiga as Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid vie for the Spanish crown this weekend.
Those statistics won’t make pretty reading for Arteta, who has long defended his side’s determination despite their lacklustre showings this season.
Manchester United legend and Sky Sports pundit had accused the Gunners of being ‘soft’ earlier this campaign and the new data only serves to underline the Irishman’s point.
‘I think they look soft. Probably lacking a bit of confidence,’ he said after the Gunners’ loss to Wolves in November.
‘I didn’t see that fight the manager was talking about. I didn’t see that determination to get the result.
‘You can have an off night, but you still find a way to get that result, and at this moment in time, I don’t see it with this group of players. I think they look a bit soft.’
Meanwhile, at the other end of the spectrum, Getafe have committed the most fouls of any side in Europe’s top five leagues this season. The Spaniards have committed 589 fouls this campaign, equating to a foul every five minutes and 44 seconds.
Fulham have earned plaudits from fans and pundits for their attractive style, but it is in fact Scott Parker’s side that have committed the most fouls in the Premier League this season at 435, at seven minutes 48 seconds a foul.
Manchester United have committed the second-most fouls this campaign with 429, a foul every seven minutes and 56 seconds.
Sean Dyche’s Burnley are often unjustly lumped with the tag of playing physical football, but the Clarets are 13th in the top flight for fouls committed with 364 at a foul every nine minutes and 18 seconds.
PREMIER LEAGUE TABLE FOR FOULS COMMITTED/MINUTE 2020-21 (CIES)
|2. Man Utd||429||35||7:56|
|3. Sheffield Utd||427||35||7:56|
|7. Aston Villa||387||34||8:33|
|10. West Brom||378||35||8:56|
|18. West Ham||350||35||9:42|
|19. Man City||327||35||10:15|
Drag left and right to view the full table
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