The surprising stat that shows how much Mikel Arteta has changed Arsenal’s approach

Arsenal’s start to the 2020/21 Premier League season has been a mixed one so far.

The Gunners have looked very impressive at times, particularly in their 1-0 victory over Manchester United at Old Trafford on Sunday evening.

However, Mikel Arteta’s side have come unstuck in a few games – albeit against very strong sides in Liverpool, Manchester City and Leicester City – where they lost.

What Arteta has done so far with the London-based club since taking over from Unai Emery late in 2019 is very impressive, and the style of play is evolving more and more into what the Spaniard wants.

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Last season, the Gunners conceded 48 times in the Premier League and it was clear the side needed some defensive reinforcements to prevent shipping so many goals.

Seven games into the 2020/21 campaign, Arteta’s men have conceded seven times – which averages at a goal-per-game – but it is four less than at this stage last term, with arguably a more difficult start to the season this time around.

Thomas Partey and Gabriel Magalhaes were the two standout defensive signings that Arsenal made in the summer transfer window, and their performances against Manchester United at the weekend was further proof – if needed – that the Gunners did some fantastic business.

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Now, according to Experimental 3-6-1, the North London-based team are in the category labelled “Quiet Attack, Quiet Defence”.

This is rather self-explanatory and it means whilst the Gunners haven’t been that electric in front of goal this season, their defence has had a lot less to do that the majority of teams in the top-flight.

Only two teams – Southampton (9) and West Ham United (10) – have faced less shots per-game on average than Arsenal, who face around 10.5 in each match.

That’s a pleasing number for supporters, and Arteta, but one…