Stats: Comparing Arsenal's win over Manchester City with Chelsea's last season

Manchester City Etihad

Arsenal's win over Manchester City may have had similarities to Chelsea's nearly 12 months earlier, while the victors tried to impose their own style on the game.

Arsenal have received widespread praise for their performance against Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium yesterday as they boosted their chances of qualifying for the Champions League, and dealing a blow to City's title chances.

Not only have the Gunners ended something of a hoodoo in Manchester and beating one of the top four sides away from home, and showed some discipline and fight that perhaps hasn't been associated with Arsene Wenger's side in recent years. 

Fight and discipline is something that is often associated with Arsenal's London rivals Chelsea, and Jose Mourinho masterminded a victory last season at the Etihad Stadium, with the team remaining compact and facing very little threat from the Manchester City side as a result.

Let's have a look at statistics of some key performance indicators from the two games:

Chelsea's 1-0 over Manchester City, February 2014:

  Passing AccuracyTackles AccuracyInterception WonLong Ball AccuracyBlocked CrossSavesAppearances
Chelsea 75% 73% 10 39% 9 3 1

Arsenal's 2-0 win over Manchester City, January 2015:

  Passing AccuracyTackles AccuracyInterception WonLong Ball AccuracyBlocked CrossSavesAppearances
Arsenal 76% 64% 39 55% 10 4 1

Though there are differences, which is what you expect given they are very different sides. But the passing accuracy, blocked crosses and saves produce similar figures.  

But in key areas you see a rise in certain numbers and where the side's generic game plan has been modified just for the trip to Manchester.

Chelsea season 2013/14:

  Passing AccuracyTackles AccuracyInterception Won GAMELong Ball AccuracyBlocked Cross GAMESaves GAMEAppearances
Chelsea 83% 77% 9.89 60% 2.79 2.53 38

 Arsenal season 2014/15:

  Passing AccuracyTackles AccuracyInterception Won GAMELong Ball AccuracyBlocked Cross GAMESaves GAMEAppearances
Arsenal 84% 75% 19.18 49% 2.41 2.5 22

The main similarity is the rise in blocked crosses which demonstrates the compact shape that both sides approached their game with Manchester City with, and saves were kept pretty close to an average. As a result of these two statistics they didn't allow City to impose their authority on the respective games. 

Their passing accuracy drops below the average, possibly because of the calibre of opposition. The one aspect that is different is perhaps a difference in philosophy between the two managers. Jose Mourinho was quite comfortable to let his opponents have the ball, while Wenger likes his side to keep hold of possession a lot more. 

The numbers at least suggest shifts in their game plan to keep themselves at tight at the back and determined to get some more control of the game. 

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