For many years, the talk of Arsenal has surrounded their exciting, attacking talent.
Attacking football has taken the team forward and put them in the category of being one of the leading scoring teams in the Premier League.
However, are we seeing the start of a fresh new era at the club, which is taking them in a different direction?
Arsenal are not playing defensively as such, but they are changing their approach to think about defensive responsibilities a little more, and that has resulted in fewer goals conceded.
Yes, there are problems in attack, and the team certainly needs to sort that out, but there is also less pressure on the forward players when the team is conceding less. Players like Reiss Nelson, who is in line to start more in the future, can have a little more time to adapt.
This is only based on the start of the current season, and there is time to change, but we could be witnessing a new type of Arsenal football evolving under our noses.
The Defensive Record So Far
When you think of Arsenal, you don’t always think of a team that has an excellent defensive record, but that is the way they are heading.
The Gunners have played 10 Premier League games and conceded 12 goals so far. This is just over one goal per game, and something they will be happy with.
To compare them to the rest of the league, neighbours Tottenham are the only team to be in single figures for goals conceded with nine so far.
No longer do we see Arsenal games filled with goals, especially important for those using matched betting to bet on football as goals and Arsenal often came hand in hand for many punters.
A Problem in Attack
At the same time Arsenal have been solving their defensive issues and ranking amongst the best for that category, they have been amongst the worst when it comes to goals scored.
Had the defensive improvement not come along, Arsenal would be looking at a very bad situation when you look at the goals they have scored.
A glance at the latest Premier League table shows that just Burnley, Sheffield United, and West Brom have scored fewer than the 10 goals Arsenal have so far. All of those three clubs are in the relegation zone.
An average of one goal per game is simply not good enough for a team in the top half of the table, let alone one that sees the top six as a minimum and is hoping for the top for in the next couple of years.
The positive of this is that the improvement needed is only small, thanks to defensive improvements Arsenal don’t necessarily need to be free-scoring anymore.
Will We Be Entertained?
For many years, Arsenal fans have been entertained by their team. This change in approach may mean fewer quality chances and more games where the winning margin is smaller, sometimes even by the odd goal.
That doesn’t mean that we won’t be entertained, but Arsenal have played 10 Premier League games so far, with 22 goals in them, so just over two per game. In the past, that figure would have been closer to three. Things are certainly slightly different.
It may not last, but if it does, a lower number of goals does not necessarily mean a lack of entertainment.
Arsenal fans may have to bite the bullet on occasions if a game is poor, but points on the board are also crucial. If the results pick up, fans are more likely to forgive quiet 1-0 victories.