Arsenal could be the best side in England for a calendar year, Jose Mourinho is setting ugly records and Tottenham fans may well be craving a return to the UK charts for Sinead O’Connor.
BBC Sport takes a look at some of the most interesting statistics from the weekend’s Premier League action.
Arsenal, Spurs, Liverpool or… Scunthorpe
Arsene Wenger’s side won 25 of their 38 games in all of 2015, an average of 2.13 points a game which was the best return in England’s top four leagues.
And they are digging in to retain their place as the best side in the country for 2016, averaging 1.88 points per game. Scunthorpe United and Brighton may have something to say on the matter though.
A number of stats seem to be pointing towards Arsenal prosperity. The Gunners have some serious momentum as they are unbeaten in 19 games, their longest stretch without defeat since 2007.
And after Sunday’s win over Bournemouth, they now have November – traditionally their worst month in the league by some margin – behind them.
The north-London outfit historically take 1.59 points in November, before moving up to an average return of 1.99 in December.
Mourinho breaking all the wrong records
Jose Mourinho may well boot a water bottle. In fact, the Manchester United boss may need more outlets for his anger.
After Sunday’s home draw with West Ham, this is now United’s worst start to a league season since 1989-90 and no wonder Jose is so unhappy on the touchline. Four games at Old Trafford without a win means he has overseen the Red Devils worst home run in 26 years.
Mourinho has a 38.5% win percentage from 13 matches. But be confident if you’re from the red half of Manchester. Sir Alex Ferguson’s mark after as many games was also 38.5%. Things turned out OK for him.
Who has the ultimate away-day hoodoo?
Every football fan has looked at their club’s next fixture and thought ‘we never do well there.’
In the case of Tottenham fans considering a trip to Chelsea, such a feeling is fully justified. They lost there again on Saturday and put simply, Spurs are rubbish at Stamford Bridge.
It’s now 30 games without a win at the Bridge for Spurs. What is strange is that Mauricio Pochettino’s side have done well against Londoners in recent years. Since the start of last season, Spurs have picked up 20 points in London derby games – the most of any side involved.
The last time they won at Chelsea though was in February 1990, when Sinead O’Connor was top of the charts with ‘Nothing compares 2 U’.
But in terms of the worst current away-day hoodoo, nothing compares to Queens Park Rangers’ visits to Nottingham Forest.
Rangers first made the 254-mile round trip in 1934 and have never, ever produced a win in 33 visits. Now that is a proper hoodoo.
Why Liverpool may not miss Coutinho
We hear what you’re all saying. “What? Philippe Coutinho is magic.”
But Liverpool’s players enjoy sharing. Take goals scored – Jurgen Klopp’s side have 11 different scorers in the league.
That’s a league high and two more than Arsenal and Spurs. Sunderland (more on them later) have just three scorers.
The Reds have 10 players who have created a goal, with Adam Lallana and Coutinho leading the way on five each, though the likes of Jordan Henderson and Roberto Firmino have three assists.
If we look at the players in the league who have been involved in the most goals, no Liverpool player makes the top 10. This suggests they are not relying on Coutinho, or anyone other individual for that matter.
Klopp may do well to start playing James Milner up front though as a goal from the converted left-back is something of a lucky charm. In his 15 seasons in the Premier League Milner has never been on the losing side in any of the 45 matches he has scored in.
The league’s most important player?
The cliche of a player who can grab a goal from out of nothing lives on strongly in Sunderland’s Jermain Defoe.
At Liverpool on Saturday he had just 20 touches – two were to take kick-offs.
Of the players in the league to have scored five times this season, no one has seen less of the ball than Defoe’s 272 touches. He finds the net every 39 touches on average.
It’s a good job he’s Mr Efficient. On Saturday, Jason Denayer in Sunderland’s midfield played 95 minutes and contributed just seven passes, hardly music to the ears of a striker.
Remarkably, Denayer’s almost non-existent contribution in possession does not top the great dismal offerings from players over the years. Blackburn’s Gael Givet got through 90 minutes having played just two passes in 2011.
Defoe has been involved in a higher percentage of goals for his team than any other player in the league. All of this prompts questions.
How would Sunderland – dubbed “the most defensive team” Klopp says he has seen in his life – benefit from being more positive and getting more support to their talisman? And, crucially, what would happen if the league’s bottom club lost him for a spell? Surely the towel might as well be thrown in.
He still has an England flag etched on his boots. The stats show the 34-year-old perhaps has a chance of adding to his 55 caps for his country. They also show he may not get much help in achieving this dream from his Sunderland team-mates.
‘Riyad, it’s Jamie. Any chance you could pass to me?’
Leicester’s fall from grace becomes more emphatic with every passing week and each damning statistic. But why? Look away now Foxes fans.
Their heroic duo of Riyad Mahrez and Jamie Vardy are doing little to aid the situation. The pair formed a dynamic partnership to fire Leicester to the Premier League title last season but this term, Mahrez has only completed 10 passes to his team-mate.
After 13 games, Claudio Ranieri’s side have now delivered the worst start to a league season as reigning champions since Ipswich in 1962-63.
The stats perhaps tell us Leicester’s demise is because of a new-found respect from opponents.
Leicester have played 750 more passes this season and made 213 tackles compared to 299 after 13 games of their title-winning campaign. The number of interceptions they have made has also dropped significantly.
Such stats imply teams are nullifying last season’s deadly counter-attacking style by letting Leicester have more of the ball.
Answers are needed. And by the way Leicester fans, Ipswich were relegated two years after winning the title.
Pardew’s place in ‘crazy’ history
Crystal Palace boss Alan Pardew described it as “madness”, Swansea manager Bob Bradley opted for “crazy”.
As five goals arrived after the 75th minute in Swansea’s 5-4 win over Crystal Palace, the fixture took its place in Premier League history.
Only once before have five goals been scored after the same stage in a fixture in the competition – Portsmouth’s 7-4 win over Reading in 2007.
Pardew has not seen his side keep a clean sheet in the league for 18 matches. Swansea perhaps showed him he’s not likely to see one any time soon in the most emphatic and punishing of manners.
Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/38124948