Arsenals top four ambitions were boosted on Monday night as a 2-0 victory over Newcastle United at the Emirates propelled them into third place in the Premier League table with just a handful of games remaining.
Goals from Aaron Ramsey and Alexandre Lacazette were enough to extend Arsenals winning run at home in the Premier League to ten games and a there is a growing sense of optimism that Unai Emery can deliver Champions League football next season.
Having played the role of underdogs in the race to finish in the top four for much of the season, Arsenal are now in pole position to do just that having clambered two points above a Tottenham side in freefall.
Impressive as Arsenals recent results have been, though, there are concerns amongst the clubs supporters that their iffy away form could yet prove to be their undoing. Of Arsenals seven remaining Premier League games, five are to be played away and Emery himself acknowledged that improvements are required beyond the Emirates.
Speaking after the Newcastle win, Emery challenged his players to find the same consistency on their travels as they have in N7, yet how will he instigate a turnaround in their performances on the road?
Arsenal home form vs away form
Home comforts play a big part in football and in general, teams are expected to pick up more points in their own stadium than elsewhere. Of the 20 teams in the Premier League this season, only Crystal Palace have won a greater proportion of their points away (20) than at home (16).
Nevertheless, picking up points on the road is vital to a teams overall success and Arsenals record away from home contrasts starkly with that of their top-six rivals. While Liverpool, Spurs, Manchester City, Manchester United and Chelsea (in that order) occupy the top five places in the Premier League away table, Arsenal are down in tenth.
In fact, Arsenals total points (19) away from home is fewer than Leicester City, Crystal Palace, Watford and Wolves. That Arsenal could leapfrog all of those teams with a win over Everton at Goodison Park on Sunday doesnt detractt from their poor overall record. Such a result would still have them six points away from Chelsea in fifth.
Arsenal havent had much of an issue finding the net in their away fixtures with their average of 1.85 goals per game not too far removed from their home total of 2.29 per game, however, their respective defensive records are vastly different.
While Arsenal have kept seven clean sheets and conceded only 12 goals at the Emirates – only Liverpool and Chelsea (both ten) have let in fewer at home in the Premier League this season – they have shipped 27 away from home, a difference of 1.22 goals per game.
Remarkably, they havent kept a single clean sheet away this season from 14 attempts, even conceding to notoriously goal-shy Huddersfield as well as a doomed Fulham team.
Arsenals problems away havent been solely restricted to domestic duties either. Although they secured group stage victories against limited opponents Vorskla in Russia, Qarabag in Azerbaijan and a slightly better Sporting team in Portugal, they have since lost twice from two Europa League knockout games.
A 1-0 defeat to BATE Borisov in Belarus was humiliating given the chasm in finances and quality between the two teams, while a 3-1 reverse to Ligue 1 mid-table side Stade Rennais left the Gunners in a precarious position to reach the quarter-finals prior to their 3-0 win in the return.
Much has been made of Arsenals favourable end of season run-in due to the fact they will not have to play any of their top-six rivals, yet defeats against BATE and Rennes show that they cannot afford to underestimate any side on their travels.
Arsenal's remaining Premier League fixtures
Everton (a), Watford (a), Crystal Palace (h), Wolves (a), Leicester (a), Brighton (h), Burnley (a)
Although it is undoubtedly a bonus that they will not have to face a direct rival, there are potential banana skin fixtures that could trip Arsenal up. Everton have won two and drawn one of the previous five meetings between the two clubs at Goodison Park and are in decent form having enjoyed back-to-back 2-0 victories over Chelsea and West Ham.
Watford beat Arsenal 2-1 in the corresponding fixture last season and are a stronger side this term, Wolves have been beaten only three times in 12 games against top-six opponents this season, Leicester are on a good run under Brendan Rodgers and Burnley rank sixth for Premier League points won in 2019.
How can Emery rectify Arsenals away form?
Arsenals previous away game in the Premier League was actually one of their better performances this season as only a Hugo Lloris penalty save from Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang in injury time denied them all three points in the north London derby at Wembley.
That encouraging display could form the basis for Emerys tactical thinking beyond the Emirates for the remainder of the campaign considering Arsenal not only stifled Tottenhams attack wiRead More – Source