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Tuesday, 5 December 2017

Assist king De Bruyne & Dave's saves - best Premier League stats



De Gea himself simply said: "It was a good game for me"

Arsenal had 15 shots on target, but only one beat the inspired David de Gea.

Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho said it was a "world's best" performance from his goalkeeper.

Gunners boss Arsene Wenger said the "absolutely outstanding" Spain international was "man of the match by a clear mile".

De Gea's remarkable showing was crucial to United's 3-1 victory on Saturday - and it meant he equalled a Premier League record.

His 14 saves were the joint-most in a single Premier League game - matching former Newcastle keeper Tim Krul and ex-Sunderland stopper Vito Mannone.

Most saves in a single game since August 2003 (when Opta began collecting this data)

DateTeamPlayerOpponentSaves19 Apr 2014SunderlandVito MannoneChelsea142 Dec 2017Manchester UnitedDavid de GeaArsenal1410 Nov 2013Newcastle UnitedTim KrulTottenham1421 Mar 2015West Bromwich AlbionBoaz MyhillManchester City137 Nov 2004FulhamMark CrossleyNewcastle United132 Jan 2017SunderlandVito MannoneLiverpool1328 Feb 2016Swansea CityLukasz FabianksiTottenham138 Apr 2006Manchester CityDavid JamesTottenham13

There was another interesting stat to come out of Saturday's scintillating match in north London - to do with expected goals.

If you don't know about expected goals, it's a way of judging how many goals a team should score based on the quality of chances they create. We wrote in detail about it in August.

Arsenal's failure to beat De Gea more than once saw the Gunners chalk up the biggest difference between goals scored and expected goals since the metric first appeared at the start of this season.

The quality of their chances meant that ordinarily a team would score five times, but instead they got just the one - when Alexandre Lacazette smashed in from six yards out.

Biggest differentials between expected goals and goals scored

DateTeamOpponentExpected goalsGoalsDifference2 Dec 2017ArsenalManchester United5.0114.0116 Sep 2017Crystal PalaceSouthampton2.4102.4110 Sep 2017Crystal PalaceBurnley2.0102.0112 Aug 2017SouthamptonSwansea City2.0102.012 Dec 2017West Bromwich AlbionCrystal Palace1.8601.86Man City's midfield leader De Bruyne left the Premier League when he joined Wolfsburg initially on loan from Chelsea in 2012

De Bruyne (verb)

1. To thunder a long-range shot into the top corner with either foot.

"she really De Bruynered that"

2. To provide an absurd number of assists over a two-year period.

"nobody De Bruyners like De Bruyne De Bruyners"

It's true - nobody does.

Manchester City's 26-year-old midfielder got his eighth assist of the league season so far with a telling final ball for David Silva to arc home in Sunday's 2-1 late win over West Ham.

It was just another example of the brilliant vision we have come to expect of the Belgium international since he returned to England two years ago, having left Chelsea after two years in January 2014.

Analysis: Total belief, squad unity and late goals - who can stop Man City?

And he's consistent too - that's him up to 35 league assists for City since his debut for the club in September 2015.

No player across Europe's 'top five' leagues (England, France, Germany, Italy and Spain) has set up more goals in that time, with Arsenal's Mesut Ozil close behind.

PlayerAssistsKevin de Bruyne (Man City)35Mesut Ozil (Arsenal)32Christian Eriksen (Tottenham)30Luis Suarez (Barcelona)30Neymar (Barcelona and Paris St-Germain29Lionel Messi (Barcelona)29Angel di Maria (Paris St-Germain)27The race to the bottom Dunk (right) scored an own goal as Liverpool thrashed his Brighton side 5-1 on Saturday

The 2013-14 campaign ended painfully for Liverpool - they missed out on the league title by two points - and it was cruel on Martin Skrtel.

The then Reds centre-back scored four own goals between August and May - the most by any player in one Premier League season.

On Saturday, Brighton defender Lewis Dunk scored his third own goal of the season so far as his side were thrashed 5-1 by Liverpool - and we're only just in December.

His games to own goals ratio is one every five matches.

But we shouldn't start thinking about his place among the Premier League's most prolific just yet - it wouldn't be fair as he's only played 15 games, and is still to reach a landmark five own goals.

All of which is perhaps unfair on Richard Rufus.

In a top 10 all-time Premier League ranking of games per own goal, it's the 42-year-old former Charlton defender at the top.

His luckless five own goals in 99 matches leads the list at a ratio of one every 19.8 games.

And the most Premier League own goals of all time? That's of course ex-Manchester City centre-back Richard Dunne, with 10.

Games per own goal in the Premier League (at least five own goals scored)

PlayerGames playedOwn goalsGames per own goalRichard Rufus99519.8Michael Duberry161532.2Martin Skrtel242734.5Scott Dann194538.8Neil Ruddock195539Gareth McAuley199539.8Richard Dunne4311043.1Frank Sinclair288648Wes Brown308651.3Henning Berg275555 Rufus scored six Premier League goals for Charlton - so at least he ended up with a net positiveHow long?

The last time Crystal Palace scored away from home in the league was when Christian Benteke's 74th-minute strike sealed a 2-1 victory over Liverpool at Anfield in April.

It's all gone downhill from there.

Even though Roy Hodgson has steadied the ship somewhat since Frank de Boer's 77-day stint, Palace still can't score on the road.

They've now gone 10 away games without finding the net - matching the 1923-24 efforts of West Brom, whose 10th goalless away match came on Christmas Day in 1923.

Palace still have a way to go before rivalling the 13 away days over which Preston North End failed to score during the 1921-22 season.

Hodgson's next three trips on the road? Leicester, Swansea and Southampton.

Top-flight goalless away runs

DateTeamGoalless away games22 Apr 1922Preston North End1318 Mar 1950Manchester City1225 Dec 1923West Bromwich Albion102 Dec 2017Crystal Palace101 Jan 2007West Ham United96 Nov 1948Everton93 Dec 1898Sheffield Wednesday9Five managers, five clubs, one winner Redknapp's first job in England's top flight was at West Ham - where he worked for seven years from 1994

Saturday saw two managerial debuts at two struggling clubs.

Alan Pardew started life at West Brom with a 0-0 draw at home to Crystal Palace, while Everton's Sam Allardyce era began with a 2-0 win over Huddersfield Town at Goodison Park.

In taking over at The Hawthorns, Pardew became the fifth manager to have worked for five Premier League clubs - following Allardyce (seven), Mark Hughes (five), Roy Hodgson (five) and Harry Redknapp (five).

And the man who comes out on top in the head-to-head? It's Mr Redknapp - the guy with the longest track record does not lie.

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