Arsenal had their highest share of possession since the 2003/04 season during the defeat against Stoke City in Saturday’s Premier League clash at the Britannia Stadium.
In a classic example of possession isn’t everything, Arsenal managed a whopping 77.3% possession against Stoke – their largest share in a Premier League match since the 2003/04 season, the Invincibles’ season.
77.3% – This was the highest possession figure that Arsenal have had in a single Premier League match since 2003-04 (77.3%). Defeated. pic.twitter.com/VnvZYv68Ys
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) August 19, 2017
In most cases, keeping so much of the ball would have led to a victory. Depraved of the ball for so long, Stoke only managed to create one big chance in the game. Unfortunately for us, they took that chance.
It wasn’t ineffectual possession for us, either, as we certainly made a number of opportunities. With better finishing on the day, and some more luck when it came to referee decisions, we might have been dominant winners.
It should be pointed out that the figure is bloated due to Stoke’s decision to sit on their lead. A good chunk of the second half saw the Potters camp on the edge of their box with no way of getting out.
It would have been hard for Arsenal not to have had most of the ball as a result.