Compared to the league’s top strikers, Alexandre Lacazette touches the ball and shoots less in the opposition penalty area.
Lacazette has struggled to impose himself on the Premier League this season.
His nine goals in 25 appearances leave him way short of the division’s top scorers, and while he’s Arsenal’s top scorer this season, fans would have expected a little more.
Stats from Twitter user @Orbinho give a bit of insight into why the Frenchman hasn’t been so prolific.
Touches in the opposition box & Shots in the area
Sterling 190 & 47
Salah 185 & 78
Kane 170 & 92
Richarlison 168 & 62
Lacazette 161 & 48
Zaha 150 & 36
Aguero 148 & 70 https://t.co/kr3UgdCO25
— Orbinho (@Orbinho) February 6, 2018
Compared to Harry Kane and Mohamed Salah, Lacazette has less touches in the opposition penalty area – the area where strikers can do the most damage.
There could be several reasons for this.
One is that Lacazette has simply played less than those two. He’s had 1,797 minutes of Premier League football this season, compared to Salah’s 1,958 and Kane’s 2,138.
More time out on the pitch would have given Lacazette more opportunities to receive the ball in the opponent’s penalty area.
The same could be said for Aguero as well. His 148 touches is quite low, but he’s played even less than Lacazette with 1,698 minutes.
Another reason is the style of play of the individual players and the teams they’re in.
Both Lacazette and Kane like to drop deep to receive the ball. Salah, on the other hand, plays more off the shoulder.
This might be why Lacazette doesn’t get many shooting opportunities, either.
At a glance, Kane’s output is amazing. He has just nine touches more than Lacazette, yet almost twice the amount of shots.
Kane does shoot more. He has 4.6 shots per game in the league this season compared to Lacazette’s rather wimpy 2.2.
But why is there such a big difference?
One explanation is that Tottenham are simply better at creating chances for Kane than Arsenal are for Lacazette.
We’ve seen numerous time this season that we haven’t adapted to Lacazette’s movement and have starved him of service.
This, combined with the Frenchman’s tendency to be selective with his shooting, results in a low number of shots.
What’s the solution?
It’s not as simple as telling Lacazette to shoot more. He may get lucky and score from unlikely areas, but this will just result in attacks breaking down and wasted shots.
It’ll come down to a combination of him adjusting his movement so that he’s in better areas to score and not outside the box, and Arsenal creating more chances for him.
If not, Lacazette will always linger behind the league’s best strikers, no matter how much natural ability he has in front of goal.