Arsenal star Francis Coquelin kept up his bourgeoning reputation with another dominant midfield display up against Liverpool’s Joe Allen.
The Gunners crushed their fellow top four rivals 4-1 as Hector Bellerin, Mesut Ozil, Alexis Sanchez and Olivier Giroud all got on the score-sheet for the hosts.
It was a clinical attacking display from the North Londoners, but their impressive form in the final third owes much to the protection offered by arguably the Premier League’s best defensive midfielder on form.
Francis Coquelin vs Joe Allen
|Tackles||Interceptions||Effective Clearances||Def Duels Won||Ball Recoveries||Accurate Passes||Errors Leading To Shots||Mins Played|
As per the table provided by Opta Stats, the former Charlton Athletic loan star won his midfield battle against Allen by dominating in as many as six key categories.
Coquelin produced more tackles, interceptions, defensive duel winners and ball recoveries – recoding as many as 10 in the latter compared to Allen’s five.
Moreover, the North London star also appeared more comfortable and assured in possession, recording 46 accurate passes to Allen’s 44 and committing zero errors.
The Reds midfielder is often unassuming in Brendan Rodgers’ side, but that’s not to say that he doesn’t have outstanding qualities which often go undetected.
The former Swansea City star has deservedly featured a number of times this season, however he could do little to impose himself against a spirited opponent in front of a gleeful Emirates stadium crowd.
Much has been made of Coquelin’s inclusion coinciding with the Gunners’ title-chasing form, and while this season may prove a bridge too far, there is every reason to be hugely optimistic of a genuine title challenge next season.